Overcome Contradictory Compassion

The inconsistencies of liberal and conservative compassion do not define the nature of good and evil.

That there are liberals who talk compassion for the weak and oppressed, but support the butchery of the weakest persons (the unborn even to the point of birth) does not make abortion less evil.

That there are conservatives who talk compassion for unborn persons, but feel little interest or compassion for their own neighbors, let alone the sorrows of the countless poor, does not make inattentive heartlessness less evil.

That liberals justify their support for butchery in the name of freedom, and conservatives justify their indifference to the miseries of poverty in the name of freedom, does not conceal the selective nature of the freedoms they want. The one says, Keep your hands off my body. The other says, Keep your hands off my wallet.

Will there ever arise a leader who can articulate a dream for overcoming this divide? There is such a Leader. But he will never be elected. His kingdom is “not of this world.” Therefore, it is both infinitely relevant and intolerably repulsive to the world. When he promotes his Way he gets crucified.

Yet, short of his perfection, let us pray that leaders will arise who labor with heart and hand, through Jesus Christ, to be wisely compassionate and to overcome every contradiction of the compassionate heart.

John Piper (@JohnPiper) is founder and teacher of desiringGod.org and chancellor of Bethlehem College & Seminary. For 33 years, he served as pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church, Minneapolis, Minnesota. He is author of more than 50 books.