Inspired by . . . Day 18: His Character, Merciful
God is Merciful
But from there you will seek the LORD your God and you will find Him, if you search after Him with all your heart and with all your soul. When you are in tribulation, and all these things come upon you in the latter days, you will return to the LORD your God and obey His voice. For the LORD your God is a merciful God. He will not leave you or destroy you or forget the covenant with your fathers that He swore to them. Deu 4:29-31
The Hebrew word used here is:
compassionate: - full of compassion, merciful.
The LORD is longsuffering, and of great mercy, forgiving iniquity and transgression, and by no means clearing the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation. Num 14:18
The Hebrew word used here is:
From H2616; kindness; by implication (towards God) piety; rarely (by opprobrium) reproof, or (subjectively) beauty: - favour, good deed (-liness, -ness), kindly, (loving-) kindness, merciful (kindness), mercy, pity, reproach,
Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful. Luk 6:36
Behold, we consider those blessed who remained steadfast. You have heard of the steadfastness of Job, and you have seen the purpose of the Lord, how the Lord is compassionate and merciful. Jas 5:11
The Greek word used in both these scriptures is:
compassionate: - merciful, of tender mercy.
Webster says that, “Mercy is a distinguishing attribute of the Supreme Being.”
Just as with love, mercy is a part of God’s character that sets Him apart from all others.
But what does mercy really mean? The best way I’ve heard it described is this:
Mercy is God withholding what we do deserve.
Punishment for sin is just one example. I can think of many things I deserved that God withheld from me. And I’m so very thankful that He did so. You?
God’s merciful compassion is infinite and inexhaustible. Through Christ, He took the judgment that was rightfully ours and placed it on His own shoulders. He waits and works now for all people to turn to Him and to live under His justification.
I fear our world today is filled with many Pharisees. Whitewashed tombs, sparkling with perfection on the outside, but inside they are filled with the unclean bones of the dead. They have no need of God’s mercy, so they do not receive it.
"Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness. These you ought to have done, without neglecting the others. Mat 23:23
We need God’s mercy because we are totally depraved.
For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Rom 3:23
This does not mean that we are as bad as we could possibly be in every dimension. But rather that there is no dimension of our humanity that is not affected by our willful rebellion against God.
But just as the offer of forgiveness means nothing until we are aware of our need, so too His mercy is often shunned by the darkness of our pride.
In a world where more mercy is shown to animals than to people, our cries for mercy should resound. But all is not lost; we can fail a thousand times, and still His mercy remains.
The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy. He will not always chide: neither will He keep His anger for ever. He hath not dealt with us after our sins; nor rewarded us according to our iniquities. For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is His mercy toward them that fear Him. Psa 103:8-11
Lord, merciful and holy, show us ourselves - -
so that we might see our Savior.
In Jesus name,
Note: Interested in reading more about mercy? I found this, mind-bending, article which contemplates, The Marriage of Justice and Mercy, aided by two of my favorite authors, George MacDonald and C.S. Lewis.
Sharing inspiration here: