Along with Jochebed and Miriam, God used Pharaoh’s daughter to help preserve the life of Moses. Moses was later called by God to lead His people from slavery in Egypt and to the edge of the Promised Land. Even though her father wanted all the Hebrew baby boys to be killed, Pharaoh’s daughter knew this command was wrong. Exodus 2:6 says “she had compassion on him (Moses).” Read her whole story in Exodus 2:5-10. She is also mentioned in Acts 7:21-22 and Hebrews 11:24-28.
After giving Moses back to his mother to be nursed, Pharaoh’s daughter took this Hebrew child as her own and raised him as her son. Here is what we can learn from Pharaoh’s daughter.
1. Pharaoh’s daughter showed compassion. Dictionary.com defines compassion as “a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.” According to Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center, compassion literally means “to suffer together.”
Pharaoh’s daughter did not know who Moses was. She did not even know his family. He was not even related to her by blood, by being an Egyptian. She could have put him back in his basket and left him on the river. Yet, Pharaoh’s daughter saw his plight and was moved with compassion to help him.
Jesus the Christ is the greatest example of showing compassion. When He came down to Earth, Jesus was often tired and hungry like any other normal person; but whenever He saw someone who needed or requested His help, He helped them.
Matthew 14:14 – “And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick.”
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.”
From the beginning of time, humanity has been shown compassion by a merciful God. After the Fall in the Garden of Eden, God could have left us to struggle with sin, trying to gain righteousness on our own, with no hope of ever receiving salvation. During the Flood, God could have given up on us and destroyed all the earth and everyone (including Noah) by water. He could have kept His Son back from performing the greatest act of compassion by dying on the cross. Yet, God saw our hopeless plight and was moved with compassion to provide a way for us to be redeemed.
As followers of Christ, we too must show compassion to others. In Ephesians 4:32, we are instructed to “be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.” When we see others struggling, we should not be able to just walk on by. We should have a strong desire to help alleviate their suffering. Whether a stranger or a friend, we should yearn to make life better for people around us.
It is not enough for us to feel the pain of others, we must work to eliminate their pain.
Compassion is a word of action.
The world would we a better place if we suffered together.