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DIVINE SYMPATHY

(John MacDuff, "The Rainbow in the Clouds")

"I know their sorrows!" Exodus 3:7

Man cannot say so. There are many sensitive fibers in the soul, which the best and most tender human sympathy cannot touch. But the Prince of Sufferers, He who led the way in the path of sorrow, "knows our frame." When crushing bereavement lies like ice on the heart, when the dearest earthly friend cannot enter into the peculiarities of our grief—Jesus can, Jesus does! He who once bore my sins—also carried my sorrows. That eye, now on the throne, was once dim with weeping! I can think in all my afflictions—"He was afflicted;" in all my tears—"Jesus wept."

"I know their sorrows!" He may seem at times thus to forget and forsake us; leaving us to utter the plaintive cry, "Has God forgotten to be gracious?" when all the while He is bending over us in the most tender love. He often allows our needs to attain their extremity, that He may stretch forth His succoring hand, and reveal the plenitude of His grace! "The Lord is very pitiful and of tender mercy."

And "knowing" our sorrows, is a guarantee that none will be sent—but only what He sees to be needful. "I will not," says He, "make a full end of you—but I will correct you in measure." All that He sends is precisely meted out; wisely apportioned. There is nothing accidental—no unneeded thorn; no superfluous pang. He "puts our tears in a bottle." Each one is counted, drop by drop, tear by tear, they are sacred things among the treasures of God!

Suffering believer, the iron may have entered deeply into your soul—yet rejoice! Jesus—a sorrowing, sympathizing Jesus—"knows" your aching pangs and burning tears, and He will "come down to deliver you!" Exodus 3:8

For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are!" Hebrews 4:15