For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die—but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5.6-8
Compassion is about being able to see need. Compassion is about helping those who are in a difficult situation. Compassion is being able to enter into another person’s struggle in order to help them overcome it. Jesus certainly did both of all these things; He did much more. Compassion on its own was not enough.
Compassion usually implies value in the person being helped. There is a certain amount of goodness or worthiness in the recipient that makes the act of compassion honorable. We think of compassion as a good thing because it helps weaker member become stronger through the sharing of power. Would compassion still be deemed a positive thing if help and strength were given to a person who would use this strength in a bad way? No. Compassion on its own would be enabling, and causing more harm in the long run.
We — ALL OF US, in our sin, are ungodly. This means that our natural inclination is to use good for our advantage at the expense of others. We naturally use compassion shown to us as a tool to oppress others. Human history bears this out. What we need from Jesus is not just compassion, but reconciliation. We don’t just need to be saved from a bad situation, but we need to be saved TO new life. We need to be reunited with our loving Father, free from the rebellion of sin. This is only possible through the life and death of Jesus.
Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation. Romans 5.9-11