Mercy

One of the misnomers of the way that people think about the Bible is this.  The Old Testament is full of the law and judgement while the New Testament is full of grace and mercy.  That sounds right, but in actuality, that is not the way that it is.  There is judgement (believe it or not) in the New Testament and there is grace (believe it or not) in the Old Testament.

Listen to the mercy we find today in Exodus 34: 5-7:

5 The LORD descended in the cloud and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name, “The LORD.” 6 The LORD passed before him, and proclaimed,
“The LORD, the LORD,
a God merciful and gracious,
slow to anger,
and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness,
7 keeping steadfast love for the thousandth generation,
forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin,
yet by no means clearing the guilty,
but visiting the iniquity of the parents
upon the children
and the children’s children,
to the third and the fourth generation.”

mercyThis passage here just happened after the Israelites had made the golden calf, one of the worst failures of their main failures.  Really, this was a bad one.  God was not happy with them.  This was one of the lowest points in the Old Testament.

And yet, here we are.  And what do we see?  God is a merciful God.  Slow to anger.  Abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.  He shows mercy for many generations.

In spite of everything, God always shows love.  Always shows underserved mercy. Always shows grace.

To me, that is what truly makes mercy, mercy.  The fact that it is undeserved.  The notion that it is unearned.  It is truly just given.  Today, right now, in this moment, God wants to show you mercy.  Not because you are good or perfect, not because you have earned it.  Not because of anything that you’ve ever done.

He wants to show you mercy because He is merciful.  He wants to show you kindness because He is kind.  He wants to show you grace because He is graceful.

He is good.  And His mercy endures forever.

Today, no matter how you approach God, know that He is a merciful God.  Don’t be afraid.  Don’t be scared.  Don’t be worried.  Don’t feel alone.

God loves you.  He will show you mercy.  May His mercy guide you, strengthen you, and uphold you.  May you live today in the mercy of our God.

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