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This Way To Happiness

The Meaning Of Mercy

Dr. Warren W. Wiersbe | July 27, 1975

Selected highlights from this sermon

What is mercy? In this message, Pastor Wiersbe defines what biblical mercy is—and what it isn’t. When God gives us His righteousness through Christ, He expects us to be like Him and show mercy to others. When we practice mercy, we receive more mercy to share, and that in turn brings us peace, liberty, and joy.

Transcripts for Dr. Wiersbe's sermons are forthcoming. Below is an outline of his message.

Mercy was not an honorable character trait in the Roman Empire, but Jesus called the merciful blessed.

If there is any mercy in the world today, it’s largely because of the Gospel.

Jesus practiced mercy, taught mercy, and died that mercy might be possible for man.

Jesus enables us to live a life of mercy.

Three views of mercy:

  • Explanation of mercy: what is mercy?
    • Whatever is true of God are called attributes of God.
    • God has absolute attributes (true regardless of creation, man, or anything else): truth, holiness, love, and eternity.
    • When we were created, God relates His attributes to man: faithfulness, justice, grace, and mercy.
    • A person cannot show mercy unless he has the power to inflict judgment.
    • We can choose mercy through faith in God’s Word.
    • The desire to retaliate is a fleshly desire.
    • Mercy means doing for people what they don’t deserve and not doing what we think they do deserve.
    • When God gives us His righteousness, He expects us to be like Him in showing mercy.
  • Examples of mercy
    • Three examples of the right kind of mercy:
      • Abraham showed Lot mercy by rescuing him.
      • Joseph showed his brothers mercy in the famine.
      • David showed Saul mercy by not killing him.
    • Mercy means not trying to be God. We do not have the authority to judge.
    • Mercy and truth are always found together in the Bible.
    • Two examples of the wrong kind of mercy:
      • David pampered Absalom and turned his back on truth.
      • Ahab didn’t obey God’s command to kill the Syrian king.
    • The wrong kind of mercy makes it easier for people to sin.
    • It was because of mercy that Jesus came as a Savior not a judge.
  • Experience of mercy
    • We cannot extend mercy to anyone if we have not received mercy ourselves.
    • Remember that the sin committed against you was already paid for on the cross.
    • Surrender yourself to God.
    • We hurt ourselves by bringing vengeance against our enemies.
    • Kindness toward our enemies may win them to Christ.

We are recipients of God’s mercy—past, present, and future.

When we practice mercy, we receive more mercy to share, bringing us peace, liberty, and joy.

When we have an unforgiving spirit, we lock ourselves up emotionally and spiritually and are unable to grow.

If you have experienced the mercy of God, share that mercy with others.

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