â€œThe LORD is gracious, and full of compassion; slow to anger, and of great mercy.â€ Â Â (Psalm 145:8)
Not one of usÂ deservesÂ Godâ€™s mercy, for â€œwe have turned every one to his own wayâ€ (Isaiah 53:6), and â€œall have sinned, and come short of the glory of Godâ€ (Romans 3:23). What we deserve is death and eternal separation from the God who made us. Nevertheless, â€œit is of the LORDâ€™s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail notâ€ (Lamentations 3:22). â€œHe hath not dealt with us after our sins. . . . For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear himâ€ (Psalm 103:10-11).
It is by His mercy, not our merit, that we are saved. â€œNot by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved usâ€ (Titus 3:5). â€œGod, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)â€ (Ephesians 2:4-5). It is â€œaccording to his abundant mercyâ€ that He has â€œbegotten us again unto a lively hopeâ€ (1 Peter 1:3).
In fact, one of the very titles of God is â€œthe Father of merciesâ€ (2 Corinthians 1:3). Over and over the psalmist assures us that â€œhis mercy endureth for everâ€ (26 times in Psalm 136:1-26; alsoÂ Psalm 106:1; 107:1; 118:1; etc.). His mercy is not only infinite, but eternal.
How can one possibly reject His mercy? â€œDespisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering?â€ (Romans 2:4). Sadly, most do. Instead, the divine challenge is: â€œI beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mindâ€ (Romans 12:1-2). This is our logical response to Godâ€™s great mercy! HMM