Often when we read a message we will do so from the victim’s viewpoint. We will gravitate towards those things in the message that applies to somebody else. Don’t do that with this message, rather just let it change you. God will work on the other guy, you just need to let Him work on you.
Consider all who you need to be more merciful with. Your spouse, children, parents, in-laws, extended relatives, friends, siblings in Christ, co-laborers in Christ, ministry leaders, bosses, workmates, service workers, anyone you come across. It is a crazy truth that we find it hard to be merciful with those closest to us or those we expect more from.
And specifically, learn to be merciful with those who have harmed you, those who consume your thoughts or set a trigger that brings the worst out of you. Let the power of Christ in you show His mercy through you. It will be in showing mercy to others that the Lord will bring healing into your life.
If we want to represent a merciful God, we must ourselves be merciful.
The Lord Jesus taught, “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy” (Matthew 5:7 NASB). We are never judged by the actions of others towards us, but our actions towards them. It is in our mercy to others that we determine His mercy back towards us.
Giving mercy to receive mercy is the spiritual principle of “you reap what you sow”. You can either sow wrath or mercy, but you will only reap what you sow. “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap” (Galatians 6:7 NKJV).
We sometimes want a God of wrath to deal with those who have harmed us. But we always want a God of mercy to deal with our own sins. Let us seek to be as merciful to others as we would hope for God to be merciful towards us.
Be merciful to the degree you want mercy. “If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins” (Matthew 6:14-15 NLT).
We say we would never hurt people on purpose, but we do it all the time. We say, “an eye for an eye”, but only when our eye was hurt first.
King David said, “With the merciful You will show Yourself merciful…” (2 Samuel 22:26 ESV). The heart you have towards others is the same heart that will be used to judge you. You are your own judge by how you judge others.
God is never impressed by the ritual or the sacrifice, but the heart that beats inside you. It is not by your passion to argue a doctrine or judge another that your faith is proven, but by your mercy to those around you.
Do not worry what others say about you, but what you say about them. Do not focus on how others treat you, but how you treat them. “For judgment will be merciless to one who has shown no mercy; but [to the one who has shown mercy] mercy triumphs [victoriously] over judgment” (James 2:13 AMP).
Let Holy Scripture be the mirror for your own heart, not the window through which to judge others.
You never walk the high road by putting others down, but by lifting others up.
If Christ is in you, then His nature will flow through you. Nobody is judged by their knowledge, but how they treat others. “But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy” (James 3:17 NKJV).
If we are not different from the world, then we are not living by His kingdom principles.
Don’t let religion hinder your faith. You don’t need rituals to please the Lord, but you need to have mercy on others. “For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings” (Hosea 6:6 KJV).
The proof of the Lord’s mercy towards you is that you are still breathing.
There are no limits to whom we should extend mercy. “And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses” (Mark 11:25-26 NKJV).
The mercy you show is the mercy you will receive.
The test of our faith is not in arguing what we believe, but in living it. The greatest test of our love to Christ is how we treat others that hate us. The Lord Jesus taught, “But love your enemies, do good to them…Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.” (Luke 6:35-36 NIV).
We always want more mercy than we are willing to give. But the Lord Jesus taught that we should give mercy, whether we receive it or not.
We must come to realize how much mercy matters to God. The Lord Jesus said, “What sorrow awaits you teachers of religious law and you Pharisees. Hypocrites! For you are careful to tithe even the tiniest income from your herb gardens, but you ignore the more important aspects of the law—justice, mercy, and faith. You should tithe, yes, but do not neglect the more important things” (Matthew 23:23 NLT).
By God’s design, mercy is higher than the law. The Ark was designed with three levels, the legs that rested on the ground, where the ground represents man’s ways, the lowest ways of all. The next level is inside the Ark, where the law resided. This is God’s standard by which man should live. But God, in His great mercy, placed the mercy seat of the Christ upon the Ark at the third and highest level.
The Lord said, “You shall put the mercy seat on top of the ark, and in the ark you shall put the testimony [the law] which I will give to you” (Exodus 25:21 NASB). Notice where mercy sits in relation to the law. His perfect mercy covers the law you could never fulfill.
You can either be under the law or under the mercy of Jesus, His own blood sprinkled onto His mercy seat. “But Christ came…with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all…” (Hebrews 9:11-12 NKJV).
With His mercy over you, extend that same mercy to everyone around you.
With all your sin, all that God requires of you is this: “…to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8 NLT).
Blessings to you,