As Christians, we often turn to the Bible for guidance, revelation, and inspiration. That’s why God gave us the scriptures to use during our time on this earth. And one thing that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ ask of us is to show kindness and compassion for others. As we learn to do this, we can turn to the many Bible stories about kindness to teach us what it means to be kind and loving to our brothers and sisters.
9 Powerful Scriptures About Kindness in the Bible
1. The Good Samaritan
The story of the Good Samaritan is a well-known parable about kindness from the New Testament of the Bible, specifically found in the Gospel of Luke, chapter 10, verses 25-37.
25 On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
26 “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”
27 He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’[a]; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b]”
28 “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”
29 But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
30 In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. 31 A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. 32 So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. 34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35 The next day he took out two denarii[c] and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’
36 “Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”
37 The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.”
Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”
Summary of The Parable of the Good Samaritan
A man is traveling from Jerusalem to Jericho. Along the way, he is attacked by robbers who strip him of his clothing, beat him, and leave him half-dead on the side of the road. As the injured man lies there, a priest passes by but deliberately avoids him. Then a Levite, who holds a religious role, also passes by without helping the wounded man.
However, a Samaritan, a member of a group that was historically despised by Jews, comes across the injured man. Despite the historical animosity between Samaritans and Jews, the Samaritan is filled with compassion. He tends to the man’s wounds, pouring oil and wine on them to disinfect and soothe, and he bandages them. He then places the injured man on his own donkey and takes him to an inn.
At the inn, the Samaritan continues to care for the man. He pays the innkeeper and instructs him to look after the man. He assures the innkeeper that he will cover any additional expenses that may arise during the man’s recovery.
Jesus concludes the parable by asking the religious expert which of the three individuals—priest, Levite, or Samaritan—acted as a neighbor to the wounded man. The religious expert answers, “The one who had mercy on him.”
Meaning and Message of The Good Samaritan
- Kindness, Compassion and Mercy: The story illustrates the significance of showing kindness, compassion and mercy to those in need. The Samaritan’s actions exemplify true neighborly love, going out of one’s way to help and care for others.
- Breaking Stereotypes: By making the despised Samaritan the hero of the story, Jesus challenges societal stereotypes and prejudices. He shows that kindness and goodness can come from unexpected sources.
- Inclusion: The parable conveys the idea that one’s neighbor is not limited by ethnicity, religion, or social status. Everyone is called to love and care for all people, regardless of differences.
The Parable of the Good Samaritan in the New Testament continues to inspire discussions about kindness, empathy, and treating others with respect and love. It serves as a timeless reminder to live out these values in daily life.
2. Rahab Hiding Israelite Spies
The story of Rahab hiding the Israelite spies is found in the Book of Joshua in the Old Testament of the Bible, specifically in Joshua chapter 2.
Then Joshua son of Nun secretly sent two spies from Shittim. “Go, look over the land,” he said, “especially Jericho.” So they went and entered the house of a prostitute named Rahab and stayed there.
2 The king of Jericho was told, “Look, some of the Israelites have come here tonight to spy out the land.” 3 So the king of Jericho sent this message to Rahab: “Bring out the men who came to you and entered your house, because they have come to spy out the whole land.”
4 But the woman had taken the two men and hidden them. She said, “Yes, the men came to me, but I did not know where they had come from. 5 At dusk, when it was time to close the city gate, they left. I don’t know which way they went. Go after them quickly. You may catch up with them.” 6 (But she had taken them up to the roof and hidden them under the stalks of flax she had laid out on the roof.) 7 So the men set out in pursuit of the spies on the road that leads to the fords of the Jordan, and as soon as the pursuers had gone out, the gate was shut.
8 Before the spies lay down for the night, she went up on the roof 9 and said to them, “I know that the Lord has given you this land and that a great fear of you has fallen on us, so that all who live in this country are melting in fear because of you. 10 We have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red Sea[a] for you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to Sihon and Og, the two kings of the Amorites east of the Jordan, whom you completely destroyed.[b] 11 When we heard of it, our hearts melted in fear and everyone’s courage failed because of you, for the Lord your God is God in heaven above and on the earth below.
12 “Now then, please swear to me by the Lord that you will show kindness to my family, because I have shown kindness to you. Give me a sure sign 13 that you will spare the lives of my father and mother, my brothers and sisters, and all who belong to them—and that you will save us from death.”
14 “Our lives for your lives!” the men assured her. “If you don’t tell what we are doing, we will treat you kindly and faithfully when the Lord gives us the land.”
15 So she let them down by a rope through the window, for the house she lived in was part of the city wall. 16 She said to them, “Go to the hills so the pursuers will not find you. Hide yourselves there three days until they return, and then go on your way.”
17 Now the men had said to her, “This oath you made us swear will not be binding on us 18 unless, when we enter the land, you have tied this scarlet cord in the window through which you let us down, and unless you have brought your father and mother, your brothers and all your family into your house. 19 If any of them go outside your house into the street, their blood will be on their own heads; we will not be responsible. As for those who are in the house with you, their blood will be on our head if a hand is laid on them. 20 But if you tell what we are doing, we will be released from the oath you made us swear.”
21 “Agreed,” she replied. “Let it be as you say.”
So she sent them away, and they departed. And she tied the scarlet cord in the window.
22 When they left, they went into the hills and stayed there three days, until the pursuers had searched all along the road and returned without finding them. 23 Then the two men started back. They went down out of the hills, forded the river and came to Joshua son of Nun and told him everything that had happened to them. 24 They said to Joshua, “The Lord has surely given the whole land into our hands; all the people are melting in fear because of us.”
Summary of Rahab and the Spies
As the Israelites, led by Joshua, prepared to enter the land of Canaan to take possession of it, they sent two spies ahead to gather information about the city of Jericho, which was one of the fortified cities in Canaan. The spies entered Jericho and lodged at the house of a woman named Rahab.
Rahab was a prostitute and likely an innkeeper. She had heard about the mighty deeds of the Israelites and their God, and she believed that their conquest of Canaan was imminent. Recognizing the strength of the Israelite God, she made a decision that would change her life and the course of the story.
The king of Jericho learned about the presence of the spies in the city and sent soldiers to Rahab’s house to capture them. Rahab, however, hid the spies on her roof and misled the soldiers by telling them that the spies had already left the city. She then negotiated with the spies, making a pact with them. In exchange for saving their lives, she asked that her family be spared when the Israelites attacked Jericho.
The spies agreed to Rahab’s terms and gave her a scarlet cord to hang from her window, indicating that her house should be spared when the city was captured. They instructed her to gather her family inside her house, and they assured her that as long as the scarlet cord was visible, her household would be safe.
When the Israelites eventually conquered Jericho, they marched around the city walls for seven days, and on the seventh day, the walls of Jericho miraculously fell down. Rahab and her family were spared, as promised. They were brought out of the city and placed in a safe location outside the camp of Israel.
Meaning and Message of Rahab and the Spies
- God’s Grace: Through his story, we see that God’s grace always includes unlikely individuals in His plans.
- Rahab’s Faith and Action: Rahab’s faith and action demonstrated her belief in the God of Israel and her willingness to take risks to protect His people.
- Kindness: Her story serves as a reminder that God’s salvation is available to all who turn to Him, regardless of their background or past.
Rahab’s story in the Old Testament is a story of courage, faith, and unexpected alliances during the conquest of the Promised Land by the Israelites. Rahab’s story is also noteworthy because she is mentioned in the genealogy of Jesus Christ, as recorded in the Gospel of Matthew.
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3. Pharaoh’s Daughter
The next Bible story about kindness is that of Pharaoh’s daughter. It is mentioned in the Old Testament of the Bible, specifically in the Book of Exodus chapter 2, verses 5-10.
5 Then Pharaoh’s daughter went down to the Nile to bathe, and her attendants were walking along the riverbank. She saw the basket among the reeds and sent her female slave to get it. 6 She opened it and saw the baby. He was crying, and she felt sorry for him. “This is one of the Hebrew babies,” she said.
7 Then his sister asked Pharaoh’s daughter, “Shall I go and get one of the Hebrew women to nurse the baby for you?”
8 “Yes, go,” she answered. So the girl went and got the baby’s mother. 9 Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Take this baby and nurse him for me, and I will pay you.” So the woman took the baby and nursed him. 10 When the child grew older, she took him to Pharaoh’s daughter and he became her son. She named him Moses, saying, “I drew him out of the water.”
Summary of The Story of Pharaoh’s Daughter and Moses
The story begins during a time when the Israelites were enslaved in Egypt under the rule of a Pharaoh who felt threatened by the growing number of Israelites. In an attempt to control their population, he ordered that all Hebrew male babies be killed.
During this period, a Hebrew woman gave birth to a son named Moses. Fearing for his life, she placed him in a basket made of reeds and set it afloat on the Nile River, hoping that he might be spared. Moses’ sister, Miriam, watched from a distance to see what would happen to her baby brother.
Coincidentally, Pharaoh’s daughter happened to be at the river at that moment. She noticed the basket among the reeds and sent her maids to retrieve it. Upon opening the basket, she found the baby Moses and was moved with compassion and kindness. Recognizing that the child was a Hebrew, she decided to adopt him as her own son.
Miriam, seizing the opportunity, approached Pharaoh’s daughter and offered to find a Hebrew woman to nurse the baby. Pharaoh’s daughter agreed, and Miriam brought Moses’ biological mother to nurse and care for him.
Meaning and Message of Rahab and the Spies
- Compassion and Kindness: Pharaoh’s daughter’s compassionate act of adopting Moses unknowingly played a crucial role in God’s plan to deliver the Israelites from slavery.
- It also highlights how God can use individuals from different backgrounds and positions to bring about His purposes. Moses’ upbringing in Pharaoh’s palace provided him with the education and experiences that would later equip him for his role as a leader and deliverer of his people.
The story of Pharaoh’s daughter and Moses demonstrates the providence of God and how He can work through unlikely circumstances to fulfill His plans. Pharaoh’s daughter plays a significant role in the early life of Moses, who would later become a central figure in the history of Israel.
4. The Woman Who Poured Perfume on Jesus’ Head
The story of kindness found in Matthew 26:6-13 is about a woman who anoints Jesus with expensive perfume. This event takes place shortly before Jesus’ crucifixion and is recorded in the New Testament of the Bible.
6 While Jesus was in Bethany in the home of Simon the Leper, 7 a woman came to him with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, which she poured on his head as he was reclining at the table.
8 When the disciples saw this, they were indignant. “Why this waste?” they asked. 9 “This perfume could have been sold at a high price and the money given to the poor.”
10 Aware of this, Jesus said to them, “Why are you bothering this woman? She has done a beautiful thing to me. 11 The poor you will always have with you, but you will not always have me. 12 When she poured this perfume on my body, she did it to prepare me for burial. 13 Truly I tell you, wherever this gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.”
Summary of the Woman Who Poured Perfume on Jesus
In this passage, Jesus is in Bethany, a village near Jerusalem, and is dining at the home of Simon the Leper. During the meal, a woman enters with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume. She breaks the jar and pours the perfume over Jesus’ head. This act of anointing was a sign of honor and respect, often done for guests or individuals of importance.
However, some of Jesus’ disciples, particularly Judas Iscariot, react negatively to the woman’s action. They question the “waste” of such expensive perfume when it could have been sold to benefit the poor. Jesus responds by defending the woman’s gesture, acknowledging that what she has done is a beautiful thing. He points out that the poor will always be present, but He, as a physical presence, will not always be with them.
Meaning and Message of the Woman Who Pours Perfume on Jesus
- Reverence and Respect: Jesus interprets the woman’s act of anointing as a symbolic preparation for His upcoming death and burial. He recognizes the deeper meaning behind her action, understanding that she is expressing her devotion and understanding of His impending sacrifice.
- Kindness and Love: Jesus concludes by declaring that the woman’s act of kindness will be remembered and commemorated wherever the Gospel is preached. This prophecy has indeed come true, as this story of the woman anointing Jesus with perfume is retold and studied as an example of sacrificial love and devotion.
The story emphasizes the importance of showing kindness, love, and devotion to Jesus and recognizing the significance of His sacrifice. It also highlights Jesus’ ability to see beyond the surface and understand the motivations and intentions of people’s actions.
5. Zacchaeus Gave Half of His Possessions to the Poor
The story of Zacchaeus giving half of his possessions to the poor is found in the New Testament of the Bible, specifically in the Gospel of Luke, chapter 19, verses 1-10.
1 Jesus entered Jericho and was passing through. 2 A man was there by the name of Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector and was wealthy. 3 He wanted to see who Jesus was, but because he was short he could not see over the crowd. 4 So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore-fig tree to see him since Jesus was coming that way.
5 When Jesus reached the spot, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.” 6 So he came down at once and welcomed him gladly.
7 All the people saw this and began to mutter, “He has gone to be the guest of a sinner.”
8 But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.”
9 Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. 10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
Summary of the Story of Zacchaeus:
In this story, Zacchaeus is introduced as a wealthy chief tax collector in Jericho. Tax collectors in that time were often despised by their fellow Jews because they worked for the Roman authorities and were seen as collaborators. They were also known for extorting money from their own people.
Eager to see Jesus passing through Jericho, Zacchaeus climbs a sycamore-fig tree since he is short and the crowd is blocking his view. As Jesus approaches, He looks up and addresses Zacchaeus by name, telling him to come down from the tree because Jesus intends to stay at his house.
The people around Jesus are surprised and critical of His choice to spend time with Zacchaeus, as he is seen as a sinner due to his occupation. However, Zacchaeus responds to Jesus’ acceptance with a profound change of heart. He declares that he will give half of his possessions to the poor, and if he has cheated anyone, he will repay them fourfold.
Jesus affirms Zacchaeus’ repentance and transformation, stating that salvation has come to his house. He highlights the purpose of His mission, which is to seek and save the lost.
Meaning and Message of the Story of Zacchaeus:
- Repentance and Transformation: Zacchaeus’ encounter with Jesus leads to a complete change in his behavior and priorities. He turns away from his past greed and dishonesty to a life of generosity and restitution.
- Jesus’ Inclusivity: Jesus’ willingness to associate with “sinners” challenges social norms and underscores His mission to reach out to all people, regardless of their background or reputation.
- Salvation and Grace: Zacchaeus experiences the transforming power of Jesus’ grace and forgiveness, leading to his salvation.
- Generosity and Restitution: Zacchaeus’ commitment to giving to the poor and making restitution demonstrates the tangible fruit of his repentance.
The story of Zacchaeus serves as a powerful reminder of the potential for transformation and redemption when one encounters Jesus and responds with a changed heart.
6. Boaz, Ruth, and Naomi
The story of Ruth is a narrative found in the Hebrew Bible, specifically in the Book of Ruth. Ruth Chapter 2 summaries how Ruth and her mother-in-law, Naomi, receive kindness from Boaz
Now Naomi had a relative on her husband’s side, a man of standing from the clan of Elimelek, whose name was Boaz.
2 And Ruth the Moabite said to Naomi, “Let me go to the fields and pick up the leftover grain behind anyone in whose eyes I find favor.”
Naomi said to her, “Go ahead, my daughter.” 3 So she went out, entered a field and began to glean behind the harvesters. As it turned out, she was working in a field belonging to Boaz, who was from the clan of Elimelek.
4 Just then Boaz arrived from Bethlehem and greeted the harvesters, “The Lord be with you!”
“The Lord bless you!” they answered.
5 Boaz asked the overseer of his harvesters, “Who does that young woman belong to?”
6 The overseer replied, “She is the Moabite who came back from Moab with Naomi. 7 She said, ‘Please let me glean and gather among the sheaves behind the harvesters.’ She came into the field and has remained here from morning till now, except for a short rest in the shelter.”
8 So Boaz said to Ruth, “My daughter, listen to me. Don’t go and glean in another field and don’t go away from here. Stay here with the women who work for me. 9 Watch the field where the men are harvesting, and follow along after the women. I have told the men not to lay a hand on you. And whenever you are thirsty, go and get a drink from the water jars the men have filled.”
10 At this, she bowed down with her face to the ground. She asked him, “Why have I found such favor in your eyes that you notice me—a foreigner?”
11 Boaz replied, “I’ve been told all about what you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband—how you left your father and mother and your homeland and came to live with a people you did not know before. 12 May the Lord repay you for what you have done. May you be richly rewarded by the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge.”
13 “May I continue to find favor in your eyes, my lord,” she said. “You have put me at ease by speaking kindly to your servant—though I do not have the standing of one of your servants.”
14 At mealtime, Boaz said to her, “Come over here. Have some bread and dip it in the wine vinegar.”
When she sat down with the harvesters, he offered her some roasted grain. She ate all she wanted and had some left over. 15 As she got up to glean, Boaz gave orders to his men, “Let her gather among the sheaves and don’t reprimand her. 16 Even pull out some stalks for her from the bundles and leave them for her to pick up, and don’t rebuke her.”
17 So Ruth gleaned in the field until evening. Then she threshed the barley she had gathered, and it amounted to about an ephah.[a] 18 She carried it back to town, and her mother-in-law saw how much she had gathered. Ruth also brought out and gave her what she had left over after she had eaten enough.
19 Her mother-in-law asked her, “Where did you glean today? Where did you work? Blessed be the man who took notice of you!”
Then Ruth told her mother-in-law about the one at whose place she had been working. “The name of the man I worked with today is Boaz,” she said.
20 “The Lord bless him!” Naomi said to her daughter-in-law. “He has not stopped showing his kindness to the living and the dead.” She added, “That man is our close relative; he is one of our guardian-redeemers.”
21 Then Ruth the Moabite said, “He even said to me, ‘Stay with my workers until they finish harvesting all my grain.’”
22 Naomi said to Ruth her daughter-in-law, “It will be good for you, my daughter, to go with the women who work for him, because in someone else’s field you might be harmed.”
23 So Ruth stayed close to the women of Boaz to glean until the barley and wheat harvests were finished. And she lived with her mother-in-law.
Summary of the Story of Ruth, Naomi, and Boaz:
After the death of her husband, Ruth, a Moabite widow, accompanies her mother-in-law Naomi back to Bethlehem in search of a better life. Ruth takes on the role of caring for Naomi and seeks to provide for them both. Being a foreigner in a new land, Ruth decides to glean in the fields, a practice where she gathers leftover grain from the harvesters. This is a way for the poor and the foreigners to obtain food.
Ruth’s dedication and hard work lead her to the fields owned by Boaz, a relative of Naomi’s late husband. Boaz notices Ruth and inquires about her from his workers. He learns about her loyalty to Naomi and her commitment to provide for her.
Boaz approaches Ruth and encourages her to continue gleaning in his fields, ensuring her safety and well-being. He also instructs his workers to intentionally leave behind extra grain for her to gather.
Impressed by Ruth’s character and devotion, Boaz extends an invitation for her to eat with his workers during mealtime. He also instructs his workers not to harm or embarrass her. Ruth is deeply moved by Boaz’s kindness and expresses her gratitude.
When Ruth returns home in the evening with the grain she has collected, Naomi is curious about her success. Ruth shares the events of the day and informs Naomi about Boaz’s generosity. Naomi recognizes that Boaz is a close relative of their family and realizes that his actions could potentially play a significant role in their future well-being.
Meaning and Message of Boaz, Ruth, and Naomi:
- Kindness and Generosity: Boaz’s actions exemplify kindness and generosity towards Ruth, a foreigner and widow. His care for her contrasts with the difficulties they would typically face as vulnerable individuals in society.
- Providence: The events in this chapter highlight how seemingly chance encounters and circumstances are guided by a higher purpose. Ruth’s choice of field and her interaction with Boaz set the stage for significant developments.
- Faithfulness: Ruth’s commitment to caring for Naomi and her willingness to work diligently in the fields demonstrate her faithfulness and dedication.
Ruth Chapter 2 sets the stage for deeper connections between Ruth and Boaz, which will have significant implications for their future and for the continuation of the story’s themes of kindness, loyalty, redemption, and God’s providence.
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7. Joseph of Arimathea
The story of kindness involving Joseph of Arimathea is found in all four Gospels of the New Testament of the Bible, specifically in relation to the burial of Jesus Christ after His crucifixion.
38 Later, Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate for the body of Jesus. Now Joseph was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly because he feared the Jewish leaders. With Pilate’s permission, he came and took the body away.
39 He was accompanied by Nicodemus, the man who earlier had visited Jesus at night. Nicodemus brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds.
40 Taking Jesus’ body, the two of them wrapped it, with the spices, in strips of linen. This was in accordance with Jewish burial customs.
41 At the place where Jesus was crucified, there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb, in which no one had ever been laid.
42 Because it was the Jewish day of Preparation and since the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.
Summary of the story of Joseph of Arimathea:
Joseph of Arimathea was a wealthy and respected member of the Jewish council, often referred to as the Sanhedrin. He was a secret disciple of Jesus, which means he believed in Jesus but hadn’t openly shown his support due to fear of the Jewish leadership.
After Jesus was crucified and died on the cross, it was customary for the bodies of executed criminals to be left exposed as a form of disgrace. However, Joseph of Arimathea was deeply moved by Jesus’ death and wanted to ensure that Jesus received a dignified burial. He approached Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor, and requested permission to take Jesus’ body down from the cross.
Pilate granted Joseph’s request, and Joseph, along with another secret disciple of Jesus named Nicodemus, took Jesus’ body from the cross. They wrapped the body in linen cloth, as was the Jewish custom for burial, and placed it in a tomb that had been cut out of the rock. This tomb belonged to Joseph himself, indicating his foresight and provision for the burial.
The tomb was located in a garden near the place of crucifixion. This location is significant because it fulfills the prophecy that Jesus would be buried in a rich man’s tomb (Isaiah 53:9).
Meaning and Message of the Story of Joseph of Arimathea:
- Compassion, Kindness, and Courage: Joseph of Arimathea’s story highlights the theme of compassion and the willingness to openly identify with Jesus, even in difficult circumstances. His act of kindness and courage in ensuring a dignified burial for Jesus serves as a reminder that acts of kindness and respect toward others, especially in their time of need, are important expressions of faith and love.
- Devotion: Joseph’s example challenges us to be bold in our beliefs and to show kindness and compassion even in challenging situations. His act of kindness is a testament to the lengths people may go to honor and serve their beliefs, and it also emphasizes the value of dignified treatment for all individuals, regardless of their circumstances.
Joseph’s act of providing a proper burial for Jesus despite the risk to his own reputation and safety is an act of kindness, compassion, and devotion. His involvement in the burial of Jesus also played a significant role in fulfilling Old Testament prophecies regarding the Messiah’s death and burial.
8. 10 Lepers
The story of the 10 lepers is found in the New Testament of the Bible, specifically in the Gospel of Luke, chapter 17, verses 11-19. It’s a story of healing, gratitude, and faith.
11 Now on his way to Jerusalem, Jesus traveled along the border between Samaria and Galilee. 12 As he was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy[a] met him. They stood at a distance 13 and called out in a loud voice, “Jesus, Master, have pity on us!”
14 When he saw them, he said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed.
15 One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. 16 He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him—and he was a Samaritan.
17 Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? 18 Has no one returned to give praise to God except this foreigner?” 19 Then he said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.”
Summary of the 10 Lepers:
As Jesus was traveling on his way to Jerusalem, he passed through a village along the border between Samaria and Galilee. In this village, he encountered ten men who were suffering from leprosy. Leprosy was a highly contagious and incurable disease in ancient times, and those afflicted were often shunned and considered unclean according to Jewish law.
Standing at a distance, the ten lepers called out to Jesus, addressing him as “Master” and asking for pity or mercy. Jesus saw their condition and responded by telling them to go and show themselves to the priests. In Jewish tradition, it was the priests who would verify the healing of a leper and pronounce them clean, allowing them to rejoin society.
Acting in faith, the ten lepers obeyed Jesus’ command and started on their way to see the priests. As they were going, they experienced a miraculous healing. Their leprosy was completely cured. However, only one of the ten, who happened to be a Samaritan, returned to Jesus.
This Samaritan, upon realizing that he had been healed, came back to Jesus. He fell at Jesus’ feet, thanking him and praising God in a loud voice. Jesus took note of this act of gratitude and expressed surprise that only one out of the ten had returned to give thanks. He highlighted the fact that the one who returned to give thanks was a Samaritan, a foreigner in the eyes of the Jewish people.
Jesus then affirmed the Samaritan’s faith and told him that his faith had made him well. This statement goes beyond physical healing; it implies a deeper spiritual well-being.
Meaning and Message of the 10 Lepers:
- Gratitude: The story emphasizes the significance of gratitude and giving thanks for the blessings we receive. Only one leper demonstrated gratitude by returning to Jesus to express his appreciation for the healing he had received.
- Faith: The healing of the lepers demonstrates the power of faith and obedience. Jesus’ command to go to the priests was an act of faith on the part of the lepers, and their faith led to their healing.
- Inclusivity: The fact that the Samaritan, an outsider in Jewish society, was the one who returned to give thanks, highlights Jesus’ inclusivity and the idea that faith and gratitude transcend cultural and societal boundaries.
- Spiritual Healing: The Samaritan’s response to Jesus not only resulted in physical healing but also brought about spiritual well-being. Jesus’ statement that his faith had made him well indicates a deeper transformation beyond the physical.
In this story, we’re reminded of the importance of recognizing and acknowledging the blessings we receive, as well as the transformative power of faith and gratitude in our lives.
9. Feeding of the 5000
The story of feeding the 5000 is a well-known miracle performed by Jesus Christ, as recorded in all four Gospels of the New Testament: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. It’s a remarkable event where Jesus multiplies a small amount of food to feed a large crowd of people.
13 When Jesus heard what had happened, he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place. Hearing of this, the crowds followed him on foot from the towns. 14 When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick.
15 As evening approached, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away, so they can go to the villages and buy themselves some food.”
16 Jesus replied, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.”
17 “We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish,” they answered.
18 “Bring them here to me,” he said. 19 And he directed the people to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. 20 They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. 21 The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children.
Summary of the Feeding of the 5000:
The story takes place in a deserted area near the Sea of Galilee, where a large crowd had gathered to hear Jesus teach and witness His miracles. The crowd consisted of men, women, and children.
As the day wore on, the people became hungry, and the disciples approached Jesus, suggesting that He send the crowd away to find food in nearby villages. Jesus, however, had a different plan. He asked the disciples to provide food for the people. The disciples were perplexed because they only had five loaves of bread and two fish, which they considered insufficient for such a large group.
Jesus directed the disciples to organize the crowd into groups and had them sit down on the grass. Then, taking the small amount of bread and fish, He blessed the food and began breaking it. Miraculously, as the disciples distributed the food, it continued to multiply, and everyone in the crowd ate until they were satisfied.
After everyone had eaten, the disciples collected the remaining fragments, and there were twelve baskets full of leftover food—more than what they had started with.
Meaning and Message of the Feeding of the 5000:
- Divine Power: The miracle of multiplying the food showcases Jesus’ divine power over nature. It highlights His authority to provide for the physical needs of His followers in extraordinary ways.
- Compassion and Provision: Jesus’ response to the hungry crowd exemplifies His compassion for the needs of people. He didn’t dismiss them but instead met their physical hunger with abundance.
- Faith and Obedience: The disciples’ obedience to Jesus’ instructions, despite their initial doubts about the available resources, emphasizes the importance of trusting in His guidance and power.
- Symbolism: This miracle is often seen as a symbol of the spiritual nourishment Jesus provides. Just as He satisfied the physical hunger of the crowd, He offers spiritual nourishment to those who seek Him.
- Abundance in Scarcity: The story illustrates the principle that God’s provision can be abundant even when human resources appear inadequate.
The feeding of the 5000 serves as a powerful demonstration of Jesus’ identity as the Son of God and as a caring provider. It invites us to trust in His ability to meet our needs and reminds us of His invitation to gather around Him and be spiritually fed.
Final Thoughts On These 9 Bible Stories About Kindess
We hope you enjoyed these examples of kindness in the Bible. Please share them with friends and family so we can all be reminded of God’s hope for us to be kind. Be sure to save this article for future reference when you need some inspiration to be kind, even when it might be hard! If you have any other favorite kindness stories from the scriptures, comment below so our other readers can enjoy them as well.