Friday, November 12, 2010

Be Merciful

James 2:13
"For judgment is without mercy to the one who has shown no mercy.  Mercy triumphs over judgment."

John MacArthur writes "A person who shows no mercy and compassion for people in need demonstrates that he has never responded to the great mercy of God, and as an unredeemed person will receive only strict, unrelieved judgment in eternal hell.  Mercy triumphs over judgment.  The person whose life is characterized by mercy is ready for the day of judgment, and will escape all the charges that strict justice might bring against him because by showing mercy to others he lives genuine evidence of having received God's mercy.

I must be careful not to judge others, but to be merciful and concerned about them in their need.  I often find this difficult because I get frustrated by people who are too lazy to work and provide for their families.  We can be very quick to judge, and the Bible is clear that we must not judge but be merciful.  God is the supreme judge.  He will judge people or their actions.  God's command to me is to not judge but to be merciful.  I can be merciful by providing food to a family who is struggling -- sometimes this may be groceries, and other times it could be a single hot meal.  Passing on clothes my children have outgrown to children whose parents can't afford it.  Taking a few minutes out of my day to drive someone to a doctor's appointment.  However, if I "show mercy" but am judging in my heart, I am not being merciful.  Mercy is an attitude of the heart that exhibits gratitude for the great mercy God has shown towards me.  It is exhibited by the pouring out of mercy and help to those around me.

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