Mercy When It Is Undeserved
Despite What You May Think, Mercy Is Not The Sole Property Of God.
Mercy is not justice.
Justice demands the punishment of the wicked.
Those who are guilty or have loved ones who are guilty ask for mercy instead of justice.
Even though others may be asking for justice.
Mercy is compassion on someone based on their need.
It is not justice, for mercy extends compassion on others in spite of what they deserve.
It is the opposite of payback.
When people deserve to be punished for a wrong they have done towards us, we want justice and we want them to suffer punishment.
Yet God wants us to show mercy towards those who have wronged us.
In return, God will bless us with His mercy.
Mercy Should Be A Part Of The Christian Life
Having only one of the qualities of the beatitudes will not save us.
In verse 3, we see the poor in spirit.
These are those who realize their wretched condition before God and humble themselves.
But humility alone will not save just like baptism alone will not save.
In verse 4, we see those who realize their condition and grieve and mourn over their situation.
These people know that they are in spiritual poverty.
They realize they will be lost unless something is done to fix the problem.
So they cry out for God’s deliverance.
The meek and gentle will gladly be willing to submit to God.
This does not indicate weakness, but it shows a resolve to obey God no matter what their situation.
This should create in them the hunger to do the will of God, knowing that doing His will is necessary for salvation.
When we realize our spiritual condition, we know that something needs to be done, and we learn that only God can do that for us.
When we submit to God and begin learning of His requirements for us, we have a sense of calm and peace come over us.
As a result we should learn to treat others with the kindness and mercy that God has shown towards us.
Mercy can also be the same thing as forgiveness. In the Lord’s prayer, we are admonished to forgive others as we have been forgiven.
God has shown us mercy, and we must show mercy to others.
This does not mean we condone sin or turn a blind eye to it.
It is the spirit that seeks to extend forgiveness whenever possible, whether it is asked for or not.
It does not hold a grudge or keep in memory some wrong someone has done to us.
Love does the same thing (1 Corinthians 13:5)
Why should we show mercy to others, and what qualities should we demonstrate to show our mercy?
Let us notice a few things.
Why Should We Show Mercy?
Hopefully it is because we realized our own condition before God and know that God has shown mercy to me.
Isaiah 64:6 - “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousness are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.”
Isaiah 59:2 – “But your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden His face from you so that He does not hear”.
Romans 3:9-10 “What then? are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin; As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:”
Romans 3:23 – “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”.
We are all lost because of sin, and we need God’s mercy and forgiveness.
Ephesians 2:7-9 “That in the ages to come he might show the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
Because of what God has done for us, we should turn that gratefulness into treating others with mercy.
We also need to realize that for God to continue showing mercy to us, we must show mercy towards others.
We should not do this because we have to, but it should be done by a willingness because of the joy we have in knowing what God has done for us.
Matthew 6:12, 14-15 - “And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors....For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.”
James 2:13 - “For judgment will be merciless to one who has shown no mercy; mercy triumphs over judgment”
What does mercy imply to others?
We do not seek revenge on others and we do not hold a grudge.
That is God’s department (Romans 12:19).
It shows we are willing to forgive, even if they do not ask for it.
It also lets others know that we are eager to forgive if they just ask for forgiveness.
We should look to the example of Jesus as He hung upon the cross when He said “Father, forgive them…”.
And the example of Stephen when he asked God to not “lay their sin to their charge”.
The story of the prodigal son lets us know the father was eager to forgive.
If these Bible examples are put into practice, we will be merciful.
We usually reap what we have sown.
God says this is true (Galatians 6:7-8).
Those that forgive will find forgiveness from God.
Those that do not forgive will not have it from God.
Those who show mercy will have it shown to them on the day of judgment.
If you recognize that God has shown you mercy…
You need to show mercy to others.
When we do that, God will extend His mercy to you.
In a way, when we show mercy to others, are we not imitating the qualities of God?
If you haven’t extended mercy to others, do so before it is too late.
By Carey Scott based on an outline from unknown.
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