Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Wearing Mercy as a Garment

'Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousands of rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?" 8 He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?'
- Micah 6:8

'Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.'
- Matthew 5:7

'Once you were not a people, but now you are God's people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.'
- 1 Peter 2:10

'Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful.'
- Luke 6:36

'Most of us have not come to grips with the clear directive of Scripture that all Christians must have their own ministries of mercy.'
- Tim Keller, Ministries of Mercy, p. 43

Lead on, O King eternal,
till sin's fierce war shall cease,
and holiness shall whisper
the sweet amen of peace.
For not with swords' loud clashing
or roll of stirring drums
with deeds of love and mercy
the heavenly kingdom comes.

- Lead On O King Eternal, The Psalter Hymnal, verse 2

Dear Christ Our Redeemer Family and Friends,

Christians, above all others, should be living examples of received mercy. The mercies we display should be reflective of the mercies we've been shown. We were the objects of deserved wrath. We were guilty, vile, helpless, and thoroughgoing enemies of God, but now through Christ we have been shown mercy. And, I dare say for many of us this mercy is scarcely comprehended. Christians who are not merciful are dull and do not understand the mercy they've been shown. We have committed treason of cosmic proportion, and yet God has shown us a treasurehouse of mercy. We deserved wrath…we received mercy. His dealings with His people are merciful, derived from His unfathomable love for Christ and for us in Christ. An awareness of mercy received begets mercy in the one shown it, because, truth be known, we cannot long comprehend God's mercies toward us without it effecting a resembling mercy in our own lives and demonstrated in mercy towards others.

It is our privilege and joy to wear mercy like a garment on display for others to see and experience, because we have been shown great mercy. May this church and all around us be filled with visible demonstrations of mercy received.

Pastor Dan

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