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October 22, 2020 8:00 am
Today on Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt challenges you to become a fully functioning follower of Jesus Christ amazing thing how fast this works in the context of our media. You might see a you know on the national news. You'll see a beheading and then a funny cat videos right after. How do you get your thoughts on something like that. You see things like an epidemic and then a guacamole recipe. You know it's it's like things are happening so fast and it numbers desensitizes what ends up becoming each and every one of us. We find ourselves losing our compassion so it can be that the whole world we live in has a tendency to make us more narcissistic or can be, that were just simply overstimulated one way or the other we're changing losing our compassion. Thank you for joining us today on this additional Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt Fellowship in the Words the radio ministry of Fellowship Bible church located in Metairie, Louisiana Pastor Bill Gebhardt now is once again he shows us how God's word. Our world, how many of you remember Tony 2012, by the way it had over 100 million hits on the Internet it was a campaign to raise awareness of the rebel conflict in central Africa and the incredible stories behind all of the refugees.
But it's got a how many of you remember the at 276 Nigerian schoolgirls who were abducted up until this month hundred 95 were still missing in this month at 82 Mora been found. How many of you remember the ALS ice bucket challenge right in just a matter of a few months or leave even weeks. They raise millions of dollars for ALS research and are not there is no question that social media offers all kinds of benefits when it comes to helping people but what were finding out now as it has a downside as well, and that is is that the material is coming so fast to us at such warp speed were so oversaturated with it that it's changing us. There is now research that has indicated that there is a correlation between social media and the decline of compassion. We as Americans have is a culture think about that we are losing our compassion for others, it seems.
What happens is that there is about 15 minutes of fame and then we ease into something very quickly and it becomes discarded in something new replaces it almost immediately and one expert because this whole phenomenon, a social epidemic, the University of Michigan has done a pervasive research on the study of college graduates over a period of 40 years and what they found this astounding. In this way after 40 years, America's college graduates are 40% less compassionate than they were 40 years ago.
But what they find it really surprised them was the standard stay together for the first 25 to 30 years. It looked like it was about the same but then when the advent of social media came began to drop exponentially. The question comes down to is that you know what's going on here what's happening to us. One of their conclusions was that the whole social media thing is it has a tendency to make us more and more narcissistic. In other words, becomes more and more about me and I only want things to have a great effect on me. One of the illustrations that they used was that the advent of the selfie which some of you may have taken already this morning hears me in church. They even listed them.
I didn't even know there were multiple selfies that is driving my car selfie that's level of difficulty is low to medium depending on pastor going.
I guess I don't know what the duck face selfie is but the love was extremely high. I would imagine there is the to me and my BFF selfie which girls take more than guys from what I read, the kissing somewhere cool selfie.
I like that may want to try that myself. The me and my pet selfie that we've got great seats at the big game. While your home alone selfie the me and my food selfie.
So if you find yourself in a really nice restaurant you want to send that in fact some people responded that selfie editing know what this was. It said hating you are and I got RN was a nurse. It means right now though me and my walking outfit selfie again. Girls do this more than guys do it.
The just woke up selfie the new do selfie you have selfies for almost anything and so their thought is we becoming narcissistic and that's why were losing our compassion. There are many other theories.
The one that makes the most sense to me is the reason that we are becoming less compassionate as a nation as individuals is we are becoming less compassionate because we have been overexposed in a way that no other generation has ever been overexposed. The law of diminishing returns. You know what that laws like if you're something you've experienced. Nationally, I mean emotionally and as you experience that emotionally was so great the first time when you go to an amusement park and you ride the roller coaster first trips amazing stay one of five or six by the fifth and sixth trip is nowhere near as amazing as it was, you begin to lose things you remember dislike about when you purchase things. The first time you ever bought a new car.
The first member that euphoria felt compared to the last time the law of diminishing returns. I can illustrate that in my own life. I can remember way back. Perhaps in the 1970s. I'm not sure if it was the 70s or 80s but I was channel surfing and I stopped and it was showing me the plight of these poorest children in Africa. I first time I never really seen it on television. It was infomercial and it showed malnutrition among the children large pot bellies, then it showed all the diseases and then flies all over their faces and around their eyes and I can remember the first time I saw that it was gut wrenching to see it. I can remember feeling incredible empathy for them and then almost shame of not ever done anything about this, but you know as the years gone by. I'm nowhere near is moved by things like that.
As I once was to become more and more desensitized because we see everything and we see it all the time.
It is an amazing thing.
How fast this works in the context of our media. You might see a you know on the national news. You will see a beheading and then a funny cat video right after it. See how to get how do you get your thoughts around something like that. You see things like an epidemic and then a guacamole recipe. You know it's it's like things are happening so fast they come to us. It desensitizes us and what ends up becoming with each and every one of us as we find ourselves sort of losing our compassion so it can be that the whole world we live in has a tendency to make us more narcissistic or can be, that were just simply overstimulated one way or the other.
We are changing and were losing our compassion. I can remember from the University of Michigan study two quotes of them apparently by Christians that sorta reflect the way I think some of us are Rob V wrote this I get so sick of everyone posting about the latest big thing.
Just last week a guy from work was raising money for his neighbor's daughter who has leukemia. Another person said they needed money for a mission trip to Honduras and this one lady from our small group stories every week about human trafficking. Now I know these things are all supposed to be important, but they're not my things.
I feel bad sometimes but I really wish people. One talk about this kind of stuff was the compassion Marla Kaelin, a personal level we been friends since high school, so I thought would be friends forever.
I can't believe she doesn't want to talk to me anymore. I knew it was a big deal to her when she posted that her mom had lung cancer. It wasn't a huge surprise to me because I remember her mom smoking like two packs a day. Whenever I stayed over there, knowing it was a big deal to her though. I commented on her Facebook post and told her I was praying and then I even sent her a text later in the day to tell her how sorry I felt, but now she's furious because that's all I did. Evidently she expected me to call her actually visitor, I would've done more but I just am so busy she thinks I don't care. I think she's just being a bit of a baby was a compassion to the question I have for you is this. Are you compassionate person. Now I think what you say now might not be what you say.
When I finish because I'm not talking about what you think. Compassionate, I want to talk to you about what the Bible says compassion is, and it's a very different kind of thing the gate this begin by opening our Bibles to Mark chapter 1 Mark chapter 1 and verse 40. I want to use Jesus as a model here number go through several Texans are showing him so you can come to your own conclusion but to see how this works for Jesus, Mark, chapter 1 and verse 40 it says in a leper came to Jesus, I spoken on this before. For those of you know, but leprosy in their world is the worst of all curses are your ostracizing the society completely isolated. Much like today, but in their world.
A person was considered unclean, and depending on which rabbi was teaching it.
There was a distance that you had to be from a leper that even if you got even close to a leper you could become unclean.
That was the culture but notices this leper approaches Jesus and the leper came to Jesus beseeching him and falling on his knees before him, and saying if you are willing, you can make me clean and don't miss this moved with what compassion Jesus is moved with compassion.
He sees the leper's supplied knees all my is the word. It is an incredible word, our English word compassion maybe not enough supplied easel my Jesus looks at him with this type of what we call compassion. Literally what that word means to me to be moved down in your bowels.
That's what it means. I got understand the ancient believed that all the great feelings come from inside you. We use heart that way. You see, we say all boy you know your so's you're so special in my heart. My heart is telling me this, but that's where we talk about the emotional idea in their day. Your bowels is where your deepest emotions were so your move this to your bowels. It means something really deeply grabs a hold of you but supplied easel my mean something else, and what it means is something very important for us to understand it always and I mean this always means that your moved to action. You're always moved to an action if you don't have an action you don't have biblical compassion. So it really doesn't matter how you feel. It doesn't matter if you have alligators. It really doesn't matter. That's the biblical compassion I could be empathy and could be sympathy, but that's the biblical compassion biblical compassion means I moved to do something about this notice with Jesus, moved with compassion. Jesus stretched out his hand and he touched him he said I am willing be cleansed and immediately the leprosy left him and he was cleansed, Jesus felt deep in his mouth.
He was moved by it, and he was moved action in this case. He claims the leper go with me to Matthew chapter 20 Matthew chapter 20 and verse 29 in verse 29 it says and as they were leaving Jericho a large crowd followed him, and two blind men were sitting by the road. Hearing that Jesus was passing by and they cried out. Lord have mercy on us, the son of David and the crowd sternly told them to be quiet, but they cried out all the more Lord, son of David, have mercy on us. Now you remember this from an earlier account with Jesus but that what was the crowd's view of those who were blind, the crowds view was either they send or their parents in somebody did some terrible sin and that's why there blind. You see, so the crowd said you guys shut up.
We want to hear from you, but they cried out, I will tell the story unfolds in Jesus stopping and he called them and he said what you want me to do for you and they said, Lord, we once our eyes to be opened and moved with compassion is moved with compassion. Jesus touched their eyes. And immediately they regained their site and they followed him notice. This is the pattern of Jesus Christ and want to see this on and on. Go go with me now to Matthew chapter 9 just a few pages to your left and I want to show you several counts because I want you to see this is the pattern of Christ starting in verse 18 in verse 18, Matthew Wrightson while he was saying these things to them the Synagogue official he came he bow down before him and he said my daughters just died. That's about as bad as it gets when there's a lot of pain in this world we all know that I don't know of anything equals anything. The loss of a child. I just don't know if there's any pain deeper than that particular pain. My daughters just died, but come and lay your hand on her and she will live while this comes under desperate people doing desperate things, and Jesus got up and began to follow him and so did his disciples now on the way there I woman who had been suffering from a hemorrhage for 12 years. I can imagine what that would have been like came up behind him touched the fringe of his quote for she was saying to yourself, I can only touch is gone and I will get well and Jesus turning and seeing her said daughter to courage, your faith has made you well at once.
The woman was made well and when Jesus came into the official's house. He saw the flute players in the crowd in noisy disorder. Now you have don't go right by that you wait to players. Yes, under Hebrew law.
One of things it's been written about the time of Christ is the statement, even the poorest in Israel should have not less than two flutes and one dwelling woman at every funeral.
These were professionals, the more money you have, the more flute players and professional whalers you get. This is a Synagogue official so I'm going to guess there were many, many flute players and many many professional women who do nothing but wail that would be an interesting profession when it you get a call you make an appointment to go to the house and then you just well.
The idea was that this is this is cultural to them and it was this was kind of been it says it was in disarray and noisy disorder. And Jesus said leave for the girl is not died but is asleep now watch and they began laughing at him with a laugh at him because their experts that's all they do. That's the profession. If anybody knows death, the flute players in the professional whalers, no death, and so they laugh at him think this is funny says, but when the crowd had been sent out. He entered and he took her by the hand and the girl got up so it says no conversation. Nothing this new spread throughout all the land.
I'll bet it did.
This is when Jesus went on from there, two blind men followed him, crying. I have mercy on a son of David and when he entered the house, the blind man came up to him and he said and Jesus said to them, do you believe that I'm able to do this and they said yes Lord, and he touched the rise and it shall be done for you according to your faith.
So now again like that what it says in their eyes were opened and Jesus sternly warned him see that no one knows about this. I want to think about that for a moment. I don't know so you been blind for your life guy touches you and now you see I'm just going to guess how many of you would tell someone really is. Notice Jesus said don't tell anyone. It says, but they went out and they spread the news throughout all the land they told everyone they ever met. Then it says this and they were going up a mute demon possessed man was brought on after the demon was cast out the mute man spoke in the crowds were amazed that they were saying nothing like this has ever been seen in Israel but the Pharisees were saying you cast out demons by the ruler of demons and Jesus was going through all the cities and villages, teaching in the synagogues proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom healing every disease and every kind of disease and every kind of sickness, and then this verse seeing the people he felt compassion. One of the blind seeing the dead walk, compassion is the son of God, he can do this, he felt compassion.
He says because they were distressed, the dispirited notice in this case, like sheep without a shepherd, and he said to his disciples, the harvest is plentiful but the workers are few.
Therefore, beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into the harvest. Why does Jesus want people to want to share the good news of his kingdom because he is compassion. These are like sheep without a shepherd.
These are like people to have life without meaning boiler so many people were like that. They have life but no meaning, no purpose. Jesus, I feel compassion for that. He said look, the harvest is there. All we need our labors to go out bestowing his own disciples that we start thinking about Jesus. This affects every part of his life. BB Warfield and his wonderful work on the life of Christ said that his whole life was a mission of compassion.
Think about it. Everything Jesus taught. Out of compassion he preached that a compassion healed out of compassion. He died out of compassion. Everything that Jesus did was out of this idea of compassion that's really is. Look at chapter 15. Just one more person for Jesus chapter 15 of Matthew in verse 32. It's everything he's got compassion about everything and things little things. Yes, compassion verse 32 Jesus called his disciples and said to him I feel compassion for the people because they have remained with me now three days and have nothing to eat and I do not want to send them away hungry for they might faint on the way while you mean he has compassion because people were hungry.
Guess not. Just because the lepers are not just because the blind are not just because they're dead yes compassion because they have a need always sparks an action question again. Do you live compassion your biblical using that's the question and the most important one without a doubt Pastor Bill give her the radio ministry of fellowship Lord, if you ever missed one of our broadcast or maybe you just like the message one more time. Remember the little green website called in one place.com that's one place.com and you can listen the fellowship and the word online event website you will find on with today's broadcast but also many of our previous audio programs as well at Fellowship in the Word. We are thankful for those who financially support our ministry and make this broadcast possible. Yes, all of our listeners to prayerfully consider how you might help his radio ministry continuous broadcast on this radio station by supporting monthly with just a one-time gift support for ministry can be sent to Fellowship in the Word.
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