4th AUGUST 2022
Jesus said, “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.” – Matthew 5:7
The greatest weakness of man is his inability to show mercy. Jesus declared the laws like Moses did; Jesus said, among other things, “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy” (Matthew 5:7)
When you go back to read the good Samaritan story (Luke 10:1 – 37), you will understand that mercy means showing compassion, pity, and favour. Therefore, mercy is an act that must be lived and exhibited to save lives and reduce suffering. Jesus showed compassion to the woman accused of adultery and thus prevented the woman from being stoned to death. However, mercy does not mean that sin is ignored. It simply means the mercy of God in refusing to bring judgment on those deserving of judgment.
Note also that mercy is different from forgiveness. That is because the mercy of God is the reason, He forgave us while we were yet sinners. The scripture says; “…he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior…” (Titus 3:5–6). Therefore, mercy is a vital spirit of life that makes forgiveness possible.
How often do you show mercy? I heard some people say they cannot overlook justice by showing mercy. But God forgave us when we were yet sinners and deserving to die. Nevertheless, mercy is given to those who acknowledged their weakness with a contrite heart. Mercy is not for the arrogant, wicked, and the one who sins deliberately. The mercy of God is for those who are ready to make amends and have asked for pardon.
The word of God is telling us today to show mercy so we can, in turn, receive mercy. Only those who show mercy will receive mercy in return. Jesus declared, “Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful” (Luke 6:36). That means that the mercy of God should be renewed in our minds and hearts every day! Do you still feel hurt and vulnerable due to the deliberate criminal or deliberate acts of others? Well, you need not think this way! If you quantify the wrong done to you and then feel the urge to take revenge or withdraw forgiveness, you are far from being merciful! That is the time to change.
One of the reasons we face difficulties in life, and no one to help us early enough, is because our spiritual bank balances do not reflect MERCY on the credit side. Instead, we are highly debited of this vital spirit of life! The much mercy we give is the much we will receive! It is not likely that anyone will ever earn your mercy! Nevertheless, you must give it just like God did for you when you deserved to die; God paid all your debts, forgave you and kept you alive.
Today is a new beginning; open your heart of mercy to embrace others. Remember, just like grace is no longer grace if it is earned, mercy is no longer mercy if it is deserved. Mercy is undeserved compassion. We are not to show mercy to those we think are deserving of our mercy. We are to be like the character of God, extending mercy to everyone every day. Show mercy when people sin against you or offend you, just like God does for us every day. The merciful expend themselves to assist others, and they receive mercy in return!
Lord God, have mercy on me, for I have sinned. Keep me under the power of thy grace and envelope me in thy righteousness. Teach me to be like thee in showing mercy to others. Father, do not let my sin stand against me in your presence anymore. Thank you, Lord, for your redeeming power. AMEN.
FURTHER READING: Matthew 18:21-35; Matthew 5: 44, 45; John 8: 10, 11