Scripture: John 16:20, Galatians 5:22, Colossians 3:12-14
Date: 01/01/2011 
Lesson: 1
God wants us to enjoy the effects of positive emotions, but because of sin we must face negative emotions as well.
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Good morning and a very Happy Sabbath to those of you joining us this morning from across the country, around the world, welcome to "central study hour," coming to you from the Sacramento central Seventh-day Adventist Church, here in Sacramento, California. This morning we are going to sing my favorite Christmas song. And I've been holding out because I wanted to have the choir sing along with us this morning with "silent night." And of course I wanted to give those of you who are viewing an opportunity to get in that song request. And many of you came through, about 60 of you. So we're going to sing that this morning along with "joy to the world.

" And that is our first one, "joy to the world." So pull out your hymnals those of you here, and those of you at home and join with us as we sing 1st, 2nd and 4th stanza, 125, "joy to the world... I want to introduce you to the Sacramento central church choir. They are right here and their bright, smiling faces. I forgot to tell you some of the names that requested "joy to the world." And of course there were so many, I can't tell you all of them. But I want to say Peter in bulgaria, kiarah in the cayman islands, ken and anja in germany, humberto in guatemala, roger in honduras, anand, ruby, corrine and cheryl in india, immanuel in malaysia, selina and jonathan in netherlands, felicia in nicaragua, andy, josie and jolly in saudi arabia, sharlene in thailand and carlos in venezuela.

So those were just a few that requested "joy to the world," and I wanted to mention your names. Our next song, "silent night," 143. And we are going to sing all four stanzas. It's actually not that long, so we will sing all of them. This is a request from many, many people, but nadica in croatia--i believe that is one of our first requests from croatia--hyacinth in india, agustin in Mexico, selina, sandrea, chief, c.

j., Craig and jonathan in netherlands, bonnie in new zealand, andy and josie in saudi arabia, ruby, rholyn, peace and yet in south korea and shanna in taiwan. Thank you to everybody else that requested songs for this holiday season. And 143, "silent night..." Father in Heaven, thank you so much for loving us enough that you willingly became a man and came and lived on this world to save each and every one of us. And because of that sacrifice that we can't even comprehend, because of that night over 2,000 years ago in a dirty, filthy stable with animals, you came to this world. And it is a mystery that we will never understand, but we thank you for what you did for us.

We thank you for creating us in your image, for creating the Sabbath for us so that we can worship you together as a church family one day every week. Thank you so much for loving us. And I pray that you will be with us throughout the rest of this day, though the Sabbath school, that you would just open our hearts and minds, that we'll be receptive to the words that you have for us this morning. In Jesus' Name, amen. At this time, our lesson study is going to be brought to us by Pastor Doug Batchelor.

He is our senior pastor here at Sacramento central Seventh-day Adventist Church. Good morning, friends. Good morning. How is everyone? We're glad to have you here. Now I'm a little bit bipolar when I teach this lesson right now because I'm living in two dimensions of time.

We're surrounded with the trappings of Christmas and singing Christmas songs. And for those who are streaming live, you're on schedule. But this lesson will be broadcast, it is our new years day lesson. And so actually I'm in 2011 when I teach this, but of course we're recording this a few weeks early. And so if you're visiting our class, and you're wondering why are you teaching lesson number one in 2011? It's because we try to stay on the cutting edge here at central church, ahead of the curve as they say.

Actually it's because of course we have to tape the programs three weeks in advance in order for us to be able to not only edit them, we then add the closed captioning for people that might be hearing impaired. And then we send them to be duplicated and sent off to the different networks. And it takes about three weeks to get that all done. So especially when I enter a new year and a new quarterly, I like to explain that to our friends. And like I said, when I'm surrounded with the poinsettias.

So welcome. We are entering into a new quarterly I'll talk about in just a moment. We have a free offer that will hopefully enhance your study for this week. And all you need to do is call the number; we'll send it to you. Ask for "a love that transforms," "a love that transforms.

" We'll be talking about "emotions" in just a moment. That number is 866-study-more, 866-788-3966. Of course we not only have people who are watching on television, but these programs are also rebroadcast on the radio. Now as I mentioned, we're entering into a new study. It's called, "Jesus wept.

" And it's dealing with the Bible and human emotions. And when I first read that, I thought, "oh, I'm in trouble." Because I don't think of myself as a very emotional person. I like to think of myself as an analytical person. But you know, the more I've studied into the lesson, I thought, no, I guess I am emotional. I guess we all have emotions, and it's probably healthy for me, for my own benefit to be studying these things.

And so we're in lesson number one today. We're going to be talking about emotions just in general. And there is a memory verse. We got a lot of verses we're going to consider, but the memory verse is John 16:20, John 16:20. And here in your quarterly they're using the niv.

If you would be nice enough to say that with me here at central church, are you ready? "I tell you the truth, that you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices; you will grieve, but your grief will be turned to joy." Now I thought on the front end of this lesson it'd be a good idea to talk about some of the definitions for emotions. And I got this right off dictionary.com. "Emotion: an effective state of consciousness in which joy, sorrow, fear, hate or the like is experienced, as distinguished from cognitive and volitional states of consciousness." Second definition: "any of the feelings of joy, sorrow, fear, hate, love." Three: "any strong agitation of the feelings actuated by experiencing love, hate, fear, etc. And it's usually accompanied by certain physiological changes as increased heart rate, respiration, and overt manifestation as crying or shaking." And fourth: "an instance of any of the above." Now I've got a list here of emotions that we can actually talk about. Hey, I just looked out there and saw David derose.

You want to help me teach the lesson? I bet you could. Hey, where's vicky? Can we find a microphone? Come on up here, David. I'm going to--i like to give people lots of warning here at central church. He had no idea I was going to ask him this, but I'm talking about the physiological effects of emotions, I thought, "oh I got a doctor in the house. Maybe we could use him.

" Think you got room for my laptop? Yeah, we'll let you. We'll share with you and your laptop. We like to keep things interesting here at Sacramento central. Thanks, I'm not bored, doug. Would you like to look at the lesson.

Sure, it'd be nice. You review that while i-- okay. I'm going to tell what some of the emotions are that we found--oh, I just went through the internet and said, "what are some of the primary emotions?" Some categorize them in just four or five places. And you've got fear, joy, love, sadness, surprise, anger. Then they have breakdowns of those: anxiety, apprehension, distress, dread, tenseness, uneasiness--these are all under the fear--worry, alarm, fright, horror, hysteria, mortification, panic, shock, terror.

So that's what we're studying this quarter. No. That's just one aspect of it. What happens to you physiologically when you feel some of these things? You know, the physiology of emotions is incredible because our brain--actually you have an emotional brain. It's called the limbic system.

And it feeds into our physiology. So if I'm afraid, my limbic system is gearing into my physiology, and it's saying, "I need to get ready to do something." We have this fight or flight response that I think most of us are familiar with. It's like when you're sitting in the audience and get called up front to be involved, yeah. I'm glad you didn't flee. [Laughs] or fight.

I usually feel the fight or flight whenever I'm at the airport. Ticket line you got the fight. And then you get on the plane, you have the flight. So that's some of the negative emotions we think of. But anxiety is another common one.

And a lot of people when they're anxious will have all kinds of physiologic systems. You may get--a lot of people get headaches when they're anxious. They'll get tension in their neck muscles and muscles that go up to the back of the skull. They'll have intestinal symptoms, many people will have either digestive upset or bowel changes when they're anxious. So all these emotions.

Love, on the other hand-- probably their heart too. Yeah, exactly, palpitations. So we've got all these things. And when we see a patient, many times we talk about emotional issues that can feed into their physical state. Now I've got a few quotes here that I was looking up on emotions.

And I thought one of these was interesting. It says, "let's not forget that the little emotions are the great captains of our lives and we obey them without realizing it." And you know, then I looked and I thought well that was interesting. It was vincent van gogh who of course got depressed and killed himself. So I started thinking, boy, I better be careful about some of these quotes on emotions because I'm not sure everybody's idea about the good or bad of emotions is all healthy. So you know, just because someone has an emotion, should we express or just let every emotion run wild? What do you think? Well, there's actually a passage that comes immediately to mind, doug.

And it may be running through a lot of people's minds. Paul wrote about this, speaking about anger. It's one of the most powerful emotions we have. In Ephesians 4:26, Paul says, "be ye angry and sin not." So a lot of times people will say, "well, they got me so mad," by the way, no one can make you mad. You realize that.

That's probably a discussion in itself. But, "they made me so mad that I did," such and such. And it's not an excuse because basically, I mean there's many verses we could look at, but God is really asking us to be in charge of our emotions through Christ dwelling in us. You know, that makes me think about a verse. I think we gave this out to somebody.

We do have verses for you to read. Ecclesiastes 4--no I'm sorry--Ecclesiastes 3, verse--jolyne, let's get a microphone over here to jolyne. Now I'm having her jump around in this familiar passage Solomon wrote. Ecclesiastes 3, I want verse 4 and then jump to verse 8. "A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

" Alright, so something that Solomon is telling us there about emotions is there are appropriate times for emotions. Is it always wrong to hate? This passage--i mean Ecclesiastes is a difficult book, but it seems, you know, pretty clear here. He's saying, emotions are not wrong. I mean we--it's appropriate to have--i mean we should be angry, we should be upset at injustice, for example. Yeah.

Well, first of all, we're made in the image of God. Does God hate anything? He loves sinners, but he hates sin. And there's "a time to love, time to hate." And then it says there's a--what did I miss here? "A time to weep and a time to laugh." And of course the name of our quarterly is dealing with "Jesus wept." So there's obviously a time to weep. But I think knowing whether or not we ought to resist certain emotions might have to do with timing. Have any of you ever told your children, "don't cry?" Would you tell that to a boy at his mother's funeral? I mean is that a right time to cry? For sure, for sure.

So what are you thinking? Well I guess one of the things that runs through my mind is there's all these constructs we have. Some of them are social constructs. Some of us are told we shouldn't show certain emotions in certain situations. And it's actually wrong, some of those things, because you know, Christ tells us we should weep with those who weep, we should rejoice with those who rejoice. I mean it's not wrong to empathize with someone in their situation.

Even when society may say, you know, grown men shouldn't cry. If someone's weeping, that may be the most comforting thing we can do for someone. Yeah, personally I think I was told that so much growing up, "you're a boy, and boys don't cry." That it's, you know, it's been a struggle. I can probably count on one hand the number of times I've really cried in the last ten years. And so it's not because I haven't felt like it.

It's like you can almost repress it so much that you forget how. But I think probably the best pattern for our emotions, if you're a Christian, would be Christ. So we have another verse that we've distributed. Who has Hebrews 4:15? Whoever has that? Right over here. "For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin.

" Alright, so did Jesus feel the panorama of human emotion? For sure. And I'm sure that he was able to regulate those things. I mean sometimes you can just tell a story and it evokes all kinds of emotions. You know, Jesus tells the story of the prodigal son, and those listening often felt varying degrees of emotions based on how they had experienced those things. Or the parable of the good samaritan.

And I think Jesus deliberately told certain stories to touch people's hearts. Matter of fact, there's a quote that I did find from dale carnegie. He said, "when you're dealing with people, remember you're not dealing with creatures of logic, but creatures of emotion." And Jesus understood that. And then someone else said, "they might forget what you said, but they'll never forget how you made them feel." Now in our church, in the Seventh-day Adventist Church--wait, I'm not going to say. I'm going to start differently.

How many of you would agree that different denominations might land in different places emotionally? Well, let me just give you an idea. When you think of, and I'm not trying to--not trying to--yes, I guess I am trying to--label people. But if I were to just say to you episcopalians, do you think of a very kinesthetic, emotional denomination? Not typically. You've got your stiff upper-lip british. If I say pentecostal.

..see? You all, you understand that. And they're all Christians? But look at how restrained and how exuberant the two categories are. Now when I say to you Seventh-day Adventists, do you think of us as an emotional group? Well, it depends on what part of the world you're in. You know, as I've traveled, I find that some cultures maybe are a little more demonstrative than others in expressing their emotions. But the message is often--it's something of a cerebral message.

And so I think that if we were to be categorized we'd probably err a little more on the side of restraint when it comes to emotion than demonstration. You know, restraint as far as emotion though doesn't mean we're not emotional. I mean I think one of the things-- that's a good point. You know, the adventist church is a church that's founded on the Bible. And like you pointed out, doug, there's so many times in the Bible where God tries to connect with our emotions.

He's not just trying to speak to our intellectual brain. As you were going through some of those examples I was thinking, you know, of nathan when he approached David, you know, over the sin with bathsheba. And the way God used nathan to reach David was to tell him a story that evoked his emotions rather than trying to convict him about, you know, the commandments or, you know, doing right. He didn't point to the verse that said, "don't commit adultery and don't kill." He told a story that helped him see what he'd done. That's a good, very good point.

Alright, speaking of David, we have a story in 2 Samuel 13. This is in our lesson under page 1. I'm going to try to review it as quickly as I can. It actually goes for about 39 verses. And it says, "now it was so that absalom The Son of David had a lovely sister--" and that word is not used very often in the Bible-- "a lovely sister whose name was tamar.

" Keep in mind absalom and his brother were two of the most handsome young men in the Kingdom. This is their sister. So she probably was lovely-- "whose name was tamar; and amnon The Son of David--" now amnon is a half-brother of tamar. "Amnon, The Son of David loved her." He is smitten with love for this sister. And he "was so distressed over his sister tamar that he became sick.

" Can a person get sick from emotions? No question. And "she was a virgin. And it was improper for amnon to do anything to her. But amnon had a friend whose name was jonadab The Son of shimeah, David's brother. And jonadab was a very crafty," or cunning, "man.

" Almost sounds like the devil here giving counsel. "And he said to him, 'why are you, the King's son, becoming thinner day after day? Will you not tell me?' And amnon said to him, 'I love tamar, my brother absalom's sister.' So jonadab said to him, 'lie down on your bed, pretend to be ill. And when your father comes to you, say to him, 'please let my sister come and give me food, and prepare the food in my sight, that I might see it and eat it from her hand.'" Now what's going on here? People in the palace were always concerned about poisoning. Amnon was the crowned prince. He was either first or second in line to be king if you went by age.

And he's thinking, "dad, you know, I'm feeling sick. And someone might be trying to dispatch me with what I'm eating. And if my sister, who I can trust, will come in and actually prepare the food in front of me, it'll probably be safe. And then, you know, I'll know I can eat it." And that was the excuse for getting her in his private quarters. And he ends up following this advice.

So she comes and she's, you know, says, "look, I'll be happy to help you, brother. And she bakes him food in front of him." And then he eats and he says, "have everyone go out from me." And I'm not going to go into the whole story, but he rapes his sister. And then after that happens, and she pled with him, "no, no," of course, and then she said, you know, "you're being foolish. And if you at least asked the King--" they still did marry half sisters back then, "he said he will give me to you. Don't do this.

" He wouldn't listen. It says after, verse 15, afterward, after he raped her, it says, "then amnon hated her exceedingly, so the hatred with which he hated her was greater than the love with which he had loved her. And amnon said to her, 'arise, and be gone!'" He said, "get out of here." Now have you ever heard stories of people saying, yeah, their love turned to hate? Well here's a Bible example where that happens. But was it really love he felt for her? Or was it lust and infatuation? And that can be very powerful. You know, sometimes we dismiss these kids that are going through junior high school.

They get smitten with somebody else, you know, some girl sets her eyes on some young man and she's just sick, sure she's in love and has all of maybe even physiological changes. And sometimes the young boy, he falls in love with his teacher and starts to fantasize that somehow they're going to run off and get married together. So but these things--and we say, "ah, it's just puppy love. You know, he'll get over it." But sometimes it's very strong. I know somebody that their young, teenage daughter hung herself over this, over some rejection.

These emotions that they felt. And you look back, and you think, "how foolish it was." But for them it was very real. You know there's an interesting physiology behind this. And it's a principle that I think everyone can relate to. It's the principle of what we feed strengthens.

You hear about it in exercise, you know, "if you don't use it, you?" "Lose it." Well, it's the same with emotions. And so here we have this story where amnon is feeding this lustful emotion. And his friends are encouraging that. And so as he continues to dwell on it, those emotions get deeper and deeper. And it's exactly what we shouldn't be doing.

When God has shown us that something is not where we should be putting our affections. We shouldn't be exercising our emotions in a certain line. We need to try and cut that off. And by Christ's grace, he gives us the power to do that. Yeah, so if someone might have an emotion of anger because they're bitter over an experience, and if you're a Christian and you know you should forgive, if not for their sake, for your sake, because you can eat yourself up for years, whenever you rehearse what that person did to hurt you, you feel the emotions.

And you got to fight--and sometimes it really takes a miracle, 'cause these things are very strong, and the memories can be very painful. You could be surrounded with it. And it takes some discipline sometimes. Alright, let's finish off this story. So he basically evicts tamar.

Well she goes out into the hall, she tears her clothes, puts earth on her head. And it turns out that her brother absalom finds her and he suspects what's happened. And he says, "has your brother--" and this is verse 20-- "has your brother amnon been with you?" Because I guess it had circulated through the palace. This was a soap opera. And boy, talk about a reality show, David's household.

And amnon said, "be at peace, my sister. He is your brother; do not take this thing to heart." And so absalom made up his mind, he would, he basically had the right as family since The Father wasn't going to do anything, the brother then sort of had the right of vengeance. He began to plot and he waited two years. Now I wonder what was happening to absalom emotionally during those two years when he was thinking about how he was going to get even with his brother amnon. And "when David heard of these things," verse 21, "he was very angry.

" But that's as far as it went. And I think David was handicapped because everyone kind of at this point knew what had happened with bathsheba. So if David was to publically punish or evict amnon for his bad behavior, folks would wag their tongues and say, "ha, look who's talking. What right do you have with the way you've behaved?" So David was angry, but he never did anything about it. And that backfired on him.

Anyway, so we're not going to read the whole story. Absalom ends up killing his brother in kind of an ambush. Then he flees and becomes a-- he goes and lives with his grandparents actually in another country. It asks in your Sabbath school lesson, "what are some of the emotional states that can be identified by the participants?" Alright, and we mentioned amnon, but what was he feeling emotionally? Lust. We mentioned infatuation.

Was it love? Is love an emotion? I'm asking that really, 'cause I am not sure. I looked in some of the--i went to psychology definitions online, they didn't list love. The Greeks had multiple terms for love, at least three that I know of. And some of them have to do with the passionate love, you know, erotic love. Others had to do with the love of friendship.

And then there's the agape love that's this love as a principle that we're called to as Christians. So we don't even have to feel loving towards someone to love them. Right, yeah, now that I think about it, love would be an emotion. I think typically some of the psychiatrists and psychologists that study this, they always think of the anger and the joy, maybe put love as a subcategory of joy. I'm not sure.

But I thought that was interesting. What was tamar feeling? I think there was probably some fear before and after, distress, shame. Yeah, you take the whole plethora of emotions that go along with shame. David, lists one word for David. Anger? I don't know if you'd call frustration, just more of a definition, but he probably felt very frustrated.

He felt like his hands were tied. He didn't know what to do. I mean what's he supposed to do with a crowned prince? Absalom. What was he feeling? Anger, probably yeah, probably a seething rage, a vengeance. For his sister what was he feeling? Is empathy an emotion when you feel what another person feels? That's definitely.

I mean you're entering into an emotional state. So empathy connotes that you're feeling with them. Yeah. I think that's very important. When we talk about emotions, we're always thinking about what we're feeling.

But when you're empathetic, you know what pathos means? To feel. And someone says, "say it with pathos," they mean, "say it with feeling." When you have sympathy, it means you have kind of a symbiotic feeling with someone. And so part of emotion is not just what you're feeling. Part of emotion is when you say, "I'm going to weep with those that weep," as the Bible says, "rejoice with those that rejoice. I'm going to share in your emotion.

" And I think that's so important with our health that we do bear each other's emotions. Oh no, it's extremely powerful. In fact, I was just speaking with some folks who don't attend church, this week. They're Christians. And I was telling them about that important social health implication that there is in church fellowship.

So even though you may not feel that you're connected with the person next to you, you've never seen them before. You know, we have a lot of visitors here at sac central. But just being--coming into community and taking an interest in people. I mean it's powerful. And if we empathize it's even more powerful.

Yeah, have you noticed if you walk into a room where folks are sad and negative that you begin to feel that? You may not even want to. And likewise, if you walk into a room where people are cheerful and positive, can that have a contagious effect? Definitely. So as Christians, what do we want to be? Won't people want to come--which room would you want to walk into? You came to a--if we say we got two Sabbath school classes here at central we'd like to welcome you to. We got the whine and pine, sad and misery class over here. And we got the happy, rejoicing class over here.

Pick your class. Which one would you go to? Let me see your hands. I'm just wondering. [Laughs] we may start some new classes here at central. Alright, we talked enough about the whine and pine.

Let's talk about some of the positive emotions. It's under our next day. Somebody has Galatians 5:22-23, do you have that verse? "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control." And it goes on to say, "and against such there is no law." That's right. Thank you very much. You know, under the positive emotions I found online, it had "ecstasy, gaiety, euphoria, bliss, elation, delight, happiness, jubilation, amusement--" I wouldn't have thought of that as an emotion-- "enthusiasm, excitement, exhilaration, thrill.

" Some people are addicted to--they call 'em thrill seekers. And so you've got these different emotions. Now you can read in Colossians 3:12-14, "therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you must do. But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection." Now the reason I'm sometimes stymied by love as an emotion, at what point--hopefully you're not always angry. And you may not always feel ecstasy or exuberance or some of these other emotions.

How often should a Christian be love? I mean God is love. So while it is an emotion, I think it's a state of being for a Christian, that you abide in love. And we're told to put on love, not just before a wedding, but you're to put on love all the time, right? And so but I'm sure you have feelings of love too that, you know, would maybe be a different definition. This text in Colossians 3 is fascinating. You know, as we're speaking about emotions, I never saw this before, Paul is saying what we should put on, these are all things that we can choose.

None of them are emotions, do you notice that? Kindness, humility. But then in verse 15, it says, "and let the peace of God rule in your hearts." That's an emotion. Yeah, that's an emotion. So God gives us his peace as we're choosing to align ourselves with him, you know, having that love, that compassion, that humility through his grace. Yeah, it's like we're to assemble these different components of the Christ-like character, and then that will as a whole, it develops peace and love when we put them together.

So positive emotions, how can we foster and encourage positive emotions? Who wants more of the positive emotions? Anyone here? Well let me just give you some ideas. You ever, you know, we just came through the thanksgiving season. What happens to you emotionally when you start counting your blessings? It's powerful. You're just strengthening, just like we were saying, what you feed strengthens and grows. Have you ever noticed just a, almost a switch, a change in your whole state of emotion and behavior.

You might be thinking about something about didn't go right, something you lack. And then all of the sudden you say--the Holy Spirit speaks, and you say, "you know, I've got so much to be thankful for." Or you may encounter somebody who is really suffering, and the Holy Spirit says, "compared to what they're going through, do you really have any complaints?" And one of my typical answers when people say, "how are you doing?" Don't we--we all ask that, right? How are you doing? And most of us give a quick answer. I hope most of us know when someone says, "how are you doing?" Unless they're a really close friend, they're really prying, most of us just want a quick answer. They're not really asking you to download all of your feelings at that time. We all have a few friends that you are reluctant to ask them how they are doing, 'cause you get too much information.

Now I'm just being honest. Isn't that right? But when people ask me, "how are you doing?" I typically say, "much better than I deserve." Because what do we deserve according to the Bible? Death, that's right. Yeah, and so we have so much to be thankful for. Just remembering that makes you feel better. I tell you what, we probably just--I'm looking at the clock here, to keep making progress here, we haven't gotten to the part about Jesus yet.

Let's turn to the next section. And it's Mark 8:1, matter of fact, dr. Derose, I'm going to let you read that. It's right there. Okay, Mark 8:1, "in those days, the multitude being very great and having nothing to eat, Jesus called his disciples to him and said to them, 'I have compassion on the multitude, because they have now continued with me three days and have nothing to eat.

And if I send them away hungry to their own houses, they will faint on the way; for some of them have come from afar.'" Alright, thank you. Now here Jesus isn't weeping, but he's demonstrating an emotion. What emotion is identified in here? Compassion. He says, "I have compassion." What is compassion? Yeah, it's with feeling, feeling what another one feels. You know, there's this parable that Jesus shares in Matthew 18.

It's called the "parable of the unmerciful debtor." And it talks about this man who was found who could not pay his debt of 10,000 talents. And he was brought before the King and they're going to liquidate everything he has and he falls down before the King and he pleads for mercy. He says, "master, have patience with me, and I will pay you all." And it says that, "the King was moved with compassion." And by the way, that's in Matthew 18:26. "The servant therefore fell down before him, saying, 'master, have patience with me.'" Now is he asking for mercy? He's asking for patience. "And I will pay you all.

" Would he ever be able to pay it all back? No. "The master of that servant was--" notice-- "moved with compassion." He felt for him, yeah you know, he saw maybe the wife is being taken off in one direction to be sold, part of someone else's harem, the kids are being taken off to be sold as slaves. And the King saw the crying, he saw the connection of loss and said, "okay, 10,000 talents, just forget about it." You know how much 10,000 talents is? If that was silver, someone once told me that would add up to--of course, the Market has changed a lot, so I don't know what the modern equivalent is, but at one time it was $52,800,000. Now if you owed me $52,800,000, you can cry all day long and [laughs] I might feel some compassion, but I'd set up a payment program, something, right. A merciful one though, right? Yeah, a merciful one.

Something that shows some progress anyway. But that represents our debt to God. And he forgot the whole thing. And then I heard an illustration I've used whenever I share that parable of a--you've probably heard me share it before--there was a streetcar accident in san francisco, where this streetcar hit a pedestrian and kind of rolled over them, and they were trapped under the carriage, under the frame. And traffic came to a standstill.

And all these people gathered around, and the man was caught under there. He was still alive and trembling and injured. And some people looked underneath the streetcar and said they've called the emergency vehicles, help is on the way. And then the story went on to say one business man got down on all fours and he had to basically do this combat crawl to get underneath the chassis, to get underneath where the man was, crawled right up to him, put his hand on his shoulder and said, "you're gonna make it. I'm here with you.

" And I heard someone say, "that's the difference between compassion and pity." See pity will look down, compassion actually gets down. Now when Jesus had compassion on the multitude, did he just say, "better send them off to get some fast food," or did he get down and do something? See that's a big difference. When God looked at our world, and he saw the mess we were in, did he have pity on us? You know, whenever I see a car accident in the traffic, we all sometimes you'll see the--you know, the fire truck and the flashing lights and some car is precariously, you know, situated on the side of the road. And you think, "oh, I wonder how bad this one was." And it's almost like you slow down and you give them a courtesy salute of pity. And they call 'em rubberneckers.

They stick their necks out and they say, "oh, look at that." Usually have another accident while they're looking at the other accident. And is that compassion? You might pity that person, or you might even be thinking, "glad it's not me." But compassion is when you pull over, and you say, "how can I help?" You're feeling you want to do something about it. Any thoughts? Well, you know, some people find difficulty seeing Christ's compassion and some of the miracles because they say, "well, he was God. I mean what did it really cost him, you know, to feed the multitude or to heal someone." There's a lot of dimensions we can't unpack this morning, but you know, one of them is it says, "by his stripes we are healed." I mean there's a whole dimension to the cost of healing of Jesus. But even in this miracle, Jesus was trying to keep under the radar screen to extend his ministry.

And when his heart went out in compassion and he did things like this, I mean, then there's a tumult to make him king. So there was a price even when Jesus was ministering as far as his heart. His compassion was costing him something and it usually does the same for us. That's right. You know, I think God has hardwired us, if our wiring is correct, to feel some empathy for all living things.

If a human has no sense about any intelligent creature that suffers. You know, maybe they struggle with sadism or something, but I think all of us, you know, feel something for any creature, but even more especially for humans that are suffering. Now we have a verse that someone is going to read for us, Mark 6:34. Who got that one? Mark 6:34, "and Jesus, when he came out, saw a great multitude and was moved with compassion for them, because they were like sheep not having a shepherd. So he began to teach them many things.

" How many of you remember the story in the Bible where David is trying to convince king Saul, "let me go fight Goliath." And he says, "nah, get out of here." He says, "oh but wait, a lion came and took one of my lambs. And I went after the lion and killed it. And a bear came and took one of my lambs, and I went after the bear and killed it." And I used to think, "well, didn't he have any compassion on the bear?" No, I didn't think that. I thought to myself, I actually had a bear. We kept goats up in the hills, used to milk goats every morning for our cereal.

And one morning we woke up because a bear, it was pitch black out, still very early, grabbed our goat, libby, and we woke up with hearing a bang in our house, because the goats actually slept under the house. And the whole house shook, and then we heard, "waa, waa!" If you have goats, you know what I'm talking about. And it was getting fainter. And I knew, goats don't wander around at night. They sleep.

And I thought, "oh, it's a bear." And my gun was out in the truck. And I'll admit to you, I was like 19 years old. I thought to myself, "I hate to lose libby, but I'm not going out there in the dark with a 22 to shoot at a bear." But I did feel compassion for her. So when I hear these stories about, you know, David feeling so much for his sheep. And then when you read where Jesus said he felt compassion for the multitude, as a shepherd does for its sheep.

And I don't think he just felt it that day. These are sheep that had no shepherd. They're just--people in the world, a lot of 'em kind of wandering aimlessly, aren't they? They don't have any direction. They don't know where they're going. He felt that.

I mean it's encouraging I think to all of us. Because if you look at God's people, I mean John says he came to his own, and his own received him not. I mean these weren't people that had it all together. And so if you're feeling, you know, this morning that you don't have it all together and maybe, "why did I even show up today?" I mean these kind of stories tell us that God has compassion for those that may not value themselves. I mean it's a powerful message for all of us, 'cause we all have those days and those weeks.

And we're precious to him, just like those helpless sheep. If--just a question. Does emotion help us in our prayers? Does God want emotion in our prayer? How many times have you heard someone say from up front, "we don't want you to be emotional about your response to Jesus." I've heard it. Some pastor makes an altar call, he's manipulating people's emotions. Well, I hope you feel something if Jesus is calling you.

I think you can choose. Maybe you don't feel anything, but you know it's the right thing to do. I think you should still make that decision. But I'm hoping if you're like the prodigal son and you've come to your senses, and you're going back to your father, you'd feel some yearning inside for your family, some fear of death, which is you know, on one side salvation is all about running from destruction, fear, and longing for eternal bliss. I mean aren't we kind of caught between these two extremes in the whole salvation scenario? So how can it be wrong for us when we pray with some emotion? I think that rather than just rehearsing prayers, when we pray with our hearts, your prayer might be shorter, but if it's intense and sincere--who was it that said, I think it was Mark twain, let me see if I still have it.

Yeah. "Any emotion, if it is sincere, it's involuntary." Now you can't, I don't think you ought to try and drum up feelings of emotion when you pray. But you ought to pray with your heart. And if you're praying with your heart and you're sincere, there probably is going to be some emotion there. You know, it's fascinating to speak about prayer and emotions because if you look at the so-called model prayer, the prayer that Jesus taught his disciples to pray more than once, how does it start? "Our father which art in heaven hallowed be thy name.

" It's not just to be a rote prayer, but he's saying this is the way we're to approach The Father. If you think about it, it's not focused on my needs, on how I'm feeling. We begin by recognizing we're God's children, and we're praising him, you know, "praise be to your name." So it's really, God is telling us to rejoice. When we come into his presence, the way we're to pray is recognize who he is, recognize who we are, and rejoice. So rejoicing isn't commanding an emotion, but it's strengthening that emotion of joy when we praise God.

Now having said this, and we'll talk about this in future lessons I'm sure. I haven't even looked through all of the different lessons yet, so if sometimes I cover something too soon. Probably we're going to talk about at some point emotions in worship. And we started out talking about the opposite poles of different church denominations and how we would peg them as how emotional or how much they demonstrate their emotions in their worship. If God wants us to worship with our hearts, does he wants us to worship him with emotion? I'm going to let that hang.

We're going to move on. Alright, let's go back here to--i had a couple of other verses here. Somebody please read for us Matthew 26:37, who got that? Right up, hold your hand up. "And he took with him Peter and the two sons of zebedee, and he began to be sorrowful and deeply distressed." What was the great sorrow and stress that Jesus felt in the garden of Gethsemane? Was he afraid of the physical suffering? I'm sure that was in his mind, but I think bigger than that he was probably sorrowful about the impending separation from The Father. Strongest love attachment in the universe, I believe, is the one that exists between God: father, son and spirit.

To sever that, even temporarily, to save man for the first time in eternity, must have been for Christ in his human form a horrific thought. No doubt. And basically he begins really bearing the sins of the world at Gethsemane. Yeah, I mean he takes, begins to taste death on our behalf. And did Jesus go through some physiological changes in the garden there? No question.

I mean sweating of blood, this diapedesis we talk about in medicine, I've never seen it in a patient. But it is a physiologic response. And that's just what, from intense stress, huh? Yeah, intense stress and grief and all that he was experiencing. Yeah. Alright, and somebody was going to read Mark 3:5, right up front here.

You got the microphone. "And when he had looked around at them with anger, being grieved by the hardness of their hearts, he said unto the man, 'stretch out your hand.' And he stretched it out, and his hand was restored as whole as the other." So here Jesus is in church, and he's getting ready to heal a man whose got some deformity of the hand, and he asks him, is it appropriate to heal a person on the Sabbath day or not, and they wouldn't answer him. And he became angry. So Jesus is feeling an emotion. Is he angry in wanting these people to be lost? Why is he angry? He's grieved too, it says.

Yeah, he's both grieving and angry at the same time. Yeah, at their lack of compassion for each other. You know, one of the central messages that John had in his letters, the apostle John, is when the brethren did not love each other. So much of what John said talked about the relationship with each other. And of course the two commandments are summarized in love for God, faith in God and love for one another.

And the Lord over and over tells us the best way for us to show love for him is by showing love for one another. And in the judgment, he says I'm going to judge you based on, "I was hungry, and you fed me; I was thirsty, you gave me drink; I was naked, you clothed me," I was in hospital or in prison or alone. And he--he thinks about how we feel to each other. That affects God. Is there singing in heaven? Amen.

Is there joy in heaven? That's right. What does the Bible record brings joy in heaven? When someone lost is found, when a lost soul comes to him, there's rejoicing among the angels in heaven. So they have these emotions in heaven. Now there's some emotions we're going to talk about later, you know, I don't know that Jesus would feel. Did Jesus ever feel guilt? Well, when he took ours.

That ran through my mind too. Not for any sins he committed. So it's going to be an interesting study when we go into this. You know, i--we got so much more to say. And I think I'll be able to pay some of what we missed in this lesson on future lessons, but they tell me that we are out of time for today.

I want to thank dr. Derose for coming up. Didn't he do a good job? the Lord is gracious, amen. Considering he had absolutely no warning at all. Want to thank our friends who have been studying with us.

Don't forget we have a free offer. It's "a love that transforms." We'll send it to you. And just call the number 866-788-3966. God bless you, friends. Happy new year.

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