"He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy."
(Proverbs 28:13 KJV)
"But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us," (Ephesians 2:4 KJV)
The best definition found was in Baker's Evangelical-Dictionary online: "Mercy is a concept integral to an understanding of God's dealings with humankind. In English translations of the Bible, it comes to expression in phrases such as 'to be merciful,' 'to have mercy on,' or 'to show mercy toward.' The corresponding term, 'merciful,' describes a quality of God and one that God requires of his people. The noun denotes compassion and love, not just feelings or emotions, as expressed in tangible ways."
We use the word "Mercy" to identify a characteristic of Our Awesome God that we cannot adequately define, much less understand. But this is a word that we need to be familiar with to help us understand God as much as possible. One of the many synonyms listed for mercy in Webster’s Comprehensive Dictionary is grace and they are sometimes used interchangeably. But mercy and grace are not the same. Mercy is not getting what you deserve but withholding punishment. Grace is getting what you don't deserve or "unmerited favor."
So mercy would be God withholding the punishment we deserve for our sinfulness. This is called forgiveness and we must believe that it can be done and confess our sins. Obedience to God's commands is not required for forgiveness but it should follow out of gratitude. But the consequence of sinning is still death. God can only forgive our sin because Jesus has now paid our penalty. This is God's grace which nobody deserves. God's mercy and God's grace are both wonderful, never imagined gifts.
Our Awesome God with His mercy and grace is all we need, if we accept Jesus Christ, for eternal life in heaven. We need to learn as much as possible about God, His Son and the purpose for our lives on earth and in heaven. If you are a Christian who has strayed away from Our Awesome God or someone who has never been a Christian or a person who needs to help minister to others, join us at Living Word Baptist Church on Sunday at 10:30 AM for worship and caring from our church of Christians. On Wednesdays, we meet at 7:00 PM for Prayer Requests, and a Bible Study follows until 8:00 PM. We welcome all people and love them!
Flo & Bill