“The merciful man doeth good to his own soul: but he that is cruel troubleth his own flesh.” (Proverbs 11:17)
Here we find the attribute of mercy. It is a simple statement, yet so true. If we have experienced God’s salvation, we have been forgiven of infinite debt, by a merciful God. Mercy is one of God’s great attributes. We see God’s mercies spoken of again and again in the Scriptures, both in the Old and New Testament. Jesus calls us to forgive our debtors, as we have been forgiven. See Matthew 18:21-35. And beyond forgiveness is the supernatural ability to see others who are poor (spiritually bankrupt), lost (headed for Hell), and in need of a Savior. We (the body of believers) each have the opportunity to exercise mercy each day of our lives to our neighbors around us. It can be a temptation to be frustrated with the daily grind and cares of the world, and be so overwhelmed with our own needs. Yet Christ calls His people to be His body on earth. It is indeed a blessing to the heart and soul when God’s grace allows us to see that other person as a sheep without a shepherd, as Jesus had compassion on the multitudes, and exercise Christian mercy. Remember the Good Samaritan? As a friend of mine recently quoted Augustine, “Preach the Gospel always – use words only when necessary”.