Mercy--a compassion or forbearance shown especially to an offender or to one subject to one's power; a blessing that is an act of divine favor or compassion; compassionate treatment of those in distress.
Looking at even more of what God requires of us, I've looked at what His Word has to say about mercy. Here are some of the scriptures I came across, along with some of the conclusions that I've come to.
1. God is merciful. PRAISE GOD, God is merciful! It is a part of who He is. It's always been a part of who He is. When He first chose to reveal Himself and His glory to Moses in the desert, that's one of His main characteristics that He chose to reveal about Himself.
"Remember, O Lord, your great mercy and love, for they are from of old."--Ps. 25:6
"And the Lord said, 'I will cause all my goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim my name, the Lord, in your presence. I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.'"--Ex. 33:19
2. The Lord will have mercy on those who love Him and turn to Him.
"Turn to me, and have mercy on me, as you always do to those who love your name."--Ps. 119:132
"Let the wicked forsake his way, and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on him, and to our God, for He will freely pardon."--Is. 55:7
"His mercy extends to those who fear Him, from generation to generation."--Luke 1:50
3. The Lord doesn't just have a little bit of mercy. He won't have mercy on those who turn to Him and then become frustrated when they mess up again. Rather, He delights to show mercy--He enjoys it!!! He is patient with us as we try to learn to follow Him.
"Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of His inheritance? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy."--Micah 7:18
"But because of His great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ, even when we were dead in transgressions--it is by grace you have been saved."--Eph. 2:4-5
"But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display His unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on Him and receive eternal life."--I Tim. 1:16
4. In fact, David, someone known as a man after God's own heart, willingly relied on God's mercy when he knew he had sinned and the Lord was bringing punishment. God gave David a choice as to what the punishment for his sin would be. He would experience: a period of famine; a period of unrest, being defeated by his enemies; or a period of judgment by the Lord Himself. David's response is incredible.
"David said to Gad, 'I am in deep distress. Let us fall into the hands of the Lord, for His mercy is great; but do not let me fall into the hands of men."--II Sam. 24:14
5. Because of God's great mercy, we have many blessings in Him.
a. We have access to Him. It's not because of anything that we have done
that we have the right to approach Him and pray to Him and ask anything
of Him at all. It's because of His mercy.
"But I, by your great mercy, will come into your house; in reverence will I bow down
toward your holy temple."--Ps. 5:7
"Give ear, O God, and hear; open your eyes and see the desolation of the city that bears
your Name. We do not make requests of you because we are righteous, but because of
your great mercy."--Dan. 9:18
"He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy. He
saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit."--Titus 3:5
"Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy
and find grace to help us in our time of need."--Heb. 4:16
b. Because of His mercy, we have forgiveness of sins!
"Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great
compassion, blot out my transgressions."--Ps. 51:1
c. Because of His mercy, we are able to rely on Him for encouragement to
persevere, to not give up in doing His work.
"Therefore, since through God's mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart."
--II Cor. 4:1
6. His mercy requires a response on our part.
a. He desires for us to show mercy to others. In fact, again we see where His
desire for us to show mercy to others is more important to Him than getting
every minute detail right religiously. He expressed this through His prophets
in the Old Testament, and Jesus Himself reiterated it on more than one
occasion in the New Testament.
"Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy."--Matt. 5:7
"For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt
b. We are to offer our lives to Him, as living sacrifices to Him, allowing Him to
transform us into the type of person He wants us to be.
"Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living
sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God--this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform
any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is--his good, pleasing, and
perfect will."--Rom. 12:1-2
7. As we mature in Him, as we grow in Him with godly wisdom, we will also grow in mercy.
"But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate,
submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere."--James 3:17