PROBLEM – Why is mercy so hard
- Grace is what God gives us – Mercy is what we give others – Compassion is what people deserve (fine line). Opposite- ruthless, cruel, inhumane. Judge and executioner
- Do you ever think to yourself, Is my life really pleasing to God?
- Mercy isn’t natural for me, complaining is. Pizza guy
GOD – But it’s what we do
“Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand bags of gold was brought to him. Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt.
“At this the servant fell on his knees before him. ‘Be patient with me,’ he begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’ The servant’s master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go.
“But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred silver coins. He grabbed him and began to choke him. ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ he demanded.
“His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay it back.’
“But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt. When the other servants saw what had happened, they were outraged and went and told their master everything that had happened.
“Then the master called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ In anger his master handed him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed.
“This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart.”
- Didn’t show mercy because he had a legitimate complaint. Never considered the mercy he was shown. That’s me!
- The heart we are to have with mercy (how do I respond?)
Ephesians 4:32 New Living Translation
Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love.
- The truth is two imperfect people can never make a perfect relationship (God+us too). A great marriage is the union of two great forgivers. Why? Mercy is love in every relationship.
APPLICATION – 2 places on the path
- First: humility. It takes humility to be merciful. “Haven’t I forgiven you of more?”
- Worst verse: God will never give you more than you can handle
- The secret is to show vulnerability. People remember that forever. Otherwise their frustration grows and their hearts are hardened.
- Example Alex. That night God worked on me through my son, so I could help my son. Me too.
- Second: move towards other people mercy. Example of Jesus befriending the marginalized (adulteress, Zach, parable)
- Vinicio Riva and he has Neurofibromatosis is a genetic disease that left his whole body covered with thousands of painful tumors. Someone tweeted, I’m an atheist. But the more I hear about Pope Francis, the more I like him. Why? Because mercy is beautiful. It is the tangible expression of God’s love for us. Mercy is love.