January 13, 2010

Much Mercy

Written by Boyd Bailey

Much Mercy… “Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.” Matthew 5:7

So much of the Christian life is reciprocal. You show love, you receive love. You extend generosity, you receive generosity. You listen to others, they listen to you. And so it is with mercy. You show mercy and you are shown mercy. Everyone desires it but not everyone gives it. Mercy requires action. It may not be deserved but it is preferred.

What is mercy? It is giving what is not deserved and it is giving what is deserved. A person may have wronged you, but you show them mercy because of the great mercy God has extended to you. Or you may be exposed to the poor and, because of their pitiful plight, you offer compassion, love and mercy by meeting their needs in the name of Jesus. Mercy is a mute point to the unredeemed, but to the saved it is being a mere Christian.

It is out of our heart felt cry to Christ for mercy that our capacity for mercy expands. A common theme in the Psalms proclaims, “O LORD, hear my prayer, listen to my cry for mercy; in your faithfulness and righteousness come to my relief” (Psalm 143:1). Those softened by their humble supplication to their Heavenly Father experience mercy.

Has someone wronged you to the point of your anger boiling over into resentment and bitterness? If you are a child of God this is no place to live. Mercy is your mandate from your Master Jesus, “Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you’ (Matthew 18:33). Mercy melts away misery into joy and happiness. It makes peace.

“But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere” (James 3:17).

Do I go often to God’s throne of grace and receive His mercy? To whom do I need to be merciful in Jesus’ name?

Related Readings: Job 9:15; Proverbs 28:13; 1 Timothy 1:16; Hebrews 4:16

Transformational Living
What did I learn from the Lord in today’s Bible reading? How will I respond?

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