God knows about your suffering: Spurgeon on God’s Compassion

God knows about your suffering: Spurgeon on God’s Compassion June 21, 2024


Charles Spurgeon the preacher
Charles Spurgeon Suffered significantly with his health. SRC: wikkimedia

One of the hardest things about going through any form of suffering such as sickness,  is the sense of being alone, isolated, and unseen.  In the following quote from preacher Charles Spurgeon, he explains that God sees, and God promises to act and be with us. This is the very definition of compassion. Because we know God is with us we can know hope and joy even in the midst of pain.  God calls us to show his compassion to others.  Spurgeon is commenting on this passage from Exodus 3.

Then the Lord told him, “I have certainly seen the oppression of my people in Egypt. I have heard their cries of distress because of their harsh slave drivers. Yes, I am aware of their suffering. So I have come down to rescue them from the power of the Egyptians and lead them out of Egypt into their own fertile and spacious land. It is a land flowing with milk and honey—the land where the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites now live. Look! The cry of the people of Israel has reached me, and I have seen how harshly the Egyptians abuse them. 10 Now go, for I am sending you to Pharaoh. You must lead my people Israel out of Egypt.” 

11 But Moses protested to God, “Who am I to appear before Pharaoh? Who am I to lead the people of Israel out of Egypt?” 

12 God answered, “I will be with you. 

(Ex 3:7–12, NLT emphasis added).

Spurgeon’s Comments

3:7 “I know about their sufferings.” This is a beautiful verse. God had seen and heard, as if their griefs had had two avenues to his heart. God sees not with eyes and hears not with ears, as we do, but, “I have observed the misery … and have heard them crying out.” And then he adds, as if to show the perfection of his sympathy with them, “I know about their sufferings.” It is still true today concerning us and concerning our God—he has seen, he has heard, and he knows. When the sorrow is known, then God begins to work. He is no passive spectator of the misery of his chosen, but his hands go with his heart.

3:8 “I have come down to rescue them.” When the cry of God’s children goes before him, depend on it, something will be moving before long. When a father hears the cries of his children, when a mother hears the cry of her baby, it is not long before there will be a movement of the heart and of the hands. I am sure, brothers and sisters, there have been crises in history which have been entirely due to the prayers of God’s people. There have been singular occurrences that the mere reader of history cannot understand, but there are many still alive who wait on God in prayer, and they make history. More history is made in the prayer closet than in the national cabinet. There is a greater power at the back of the throne than the carnal eye can see, and that power is the cry of God’s children.

3:12 “I will certainly be with you.” What more does Moses need? He said, “Who am I?” This showed his weakness. God said, “Never mind who you are. Certainly I will be with you.” Here was strength enough for him.

Spurgeon (2017) The Spurgeon Study Bible: Notes. Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers, p. 75.



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