Read Matthew 9:36
When he saw the crowds,he had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless,like sheep without a shepherd. (NLT)
This is how Jesus saw those who were looking for love in all the wrong places and who were seeking happiness in unhappy pursuits. Incidentally,it is not quite how he saw the self-righteous religious leaders who figured they had life sorted out: he gets stuck into them! But with the general populace it seems his primary feeling is compassion.
We sometimes reverse this perspective. We can play along with those who are outwardly respectable and ‘know their stuff’,all the time looking down our noses with judgemental anger at those whose sins we especially despise. Respectable rebels get our indulgence; scandalous sinners get our pursed-lipped disapproval.
Jesus was able to show compassion to the lost because he had the love of his Father as his centre point. He was able to show pity on them because he saw beneath their façade and recognised their lostness. He also knew that while they were like lost sheep,he had come to be their good shepherd.
May we not be ‘selective’ in our denunciation of human wrongdoing. May we be guided to speak and act not by any sense of moral superiority but by the Father’s heart of God. May we not look down on the lost sheep but up to the good shepherd.