“For as the heavens are high above the earth, So great is His mercy toward those who fear Him; As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us. As a father pities his children, So the Lord pities those who fear Him. For He knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust. As for man, his days are like grass; As a flower of the field, so he flourishes. For the wind passes over it, and it is gone, And its place remembers it no more. But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting On those who fear Him, And His righteousness to children’s children, To such as keep His covenant, And to those who remember His commandments to do them. The Lord has established His throne in heaven, And His kingdom rules over all.”
Psalms 103:11-19 NKJV
Humanity has a love/hate relationship with itself. We either love each other or we hate each other, we either place people on pedestals or we label them as he lowest of the low, to be gently reviled. We are either G.O.A.Ts or goats, hero or scape, and often moving down from one to the other.
We place people on pedestals and then shake them to see if they will fall off, and once they do, we heap on the pain, forgetting that we put them up there in the first place.
Psalm 103 reminded me that the Lord our Creator, knows our true nature, and understands that we are just dust. We are but flowers in the field, here today and gone tomorrow. We are volatile and temporary, as our time is short and the memories of what we have done, fleeting, vaporous.
In light of our perishable nature, I am thankful for the mercy of God. If not for His mercy I would still be a condemned sinner, caught up in my filth, bound up in my sins and headed to hell. But God was merciful, as He looked upon this sinner, who had nothing to offer, and extended grace. He showed mercy and did not give me what I deserved.
“For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
Romans 5:7-8 NKJV
Jesus came to earth, the God/Man, to walk among us, to live as one of us, and die for our sins. He paid a sin debt He did not owe for His creation, who owed a sin debt they could not pay. He came with mercy, for all of us had sinned and deserved hell.
“As it is written: “There is none righteous, no, not one;”
Romans 3:10 NKJV
Romans 3:10 NKJV“for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,”
Romans 3:23 NKJV
When I consider the world we live in, I wish that we humans could look upon each other the way that God sees us. If we did, we would look upon the character flaws as evidences of the need for salvation, and as an invitation to judge. We would look upon each other with mercy, and seek to help each other. More people would be saved and Christ glorified.
One might think, “I am not God, I don’t have that much love.” If you are a follower of Jesus, you have God in you, and the power of the Holy Spirit. It is by that power that we can look upon others and consider others with mercy.
We have been given the ministry of reconciliation, going forth to share the Gospel. We go as ones saved by the blood, once sinners, but made new by the grace of God. I am reminded daily of how little I bring to this walk, as the Lord has given me a multitude of thorns in the flesh and a memory of my past sinfulness.
I go and proclaim the message of forgiveness with authenticity, having been forgiven much.
“Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
Philippians 2:5-11 NKJV
Brothers and sisters, Jesus has given us Himself as a role model for how we ought to be. Time and time again, He encountered sinners in His ministry, and He received them with love and kindness. He has compassion for the hurting. I can tell you one thing: there are many hurting people out there.
We are called tone His ambassadors, representatives, so let us love with His love, and show His mercy.
“Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day of Christ that I have not run in vain or labored in vain.”
Philippians 2:14-16 NKJV
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