"God is so rich in mercy…." Ephesians 2:4, NLT
Did you know God is loaded? And not just with gold. He is loaded with mercy. He is rich in mercy. Couple that with the fact that He is a giver, and wow, what a picture of our Father. He is so loaded with mercy He’s just looking for people to give it to!
Some people compare grace and mercy this way: grace is when we get what we don’t deserve, while mercy is when we don’t get what we do deserve. Without mercy, we deserve to feel guilty, unworthy and condemned; we deserve to pay the piper, to sleep in the bed we made and to pay for our sins. Without mercy, we deserve whatever bad things come our way when we mess up. Thank God, He is rich in mercy and we don't get what we deserve!
Let’s read the rest of the passage in Ephesians, "But God is so rich in mercy, and He loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, He gave us life when He raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!) For He raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with Him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus. So God can point to us in all future ages as examples of the incredible wealth of His grace and kindness toward us, as shown in all He has done for us who are united with Christ Jesus. God saved you by His grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things He planned for us long ago." (Ephesians 2:4-10, NLT)
What does this mean? Because of God’s mercy, when we believed in Jesus as our Lord, we received God’s free gift of salvation. Salvation is more than just being “saved” from hell. Salvation is the all-encompassing word of the gospel. Several scholars describe salvation as the present possession of all true Christians, including: safety, preservation, healing, peace, harmony, the experience of material and temporal deliverance from danger and so much more.
This gift of salvation, and all that goes with it, went to work in our lives the day Jesus became our Lord. We don’t obtain salvation in the sweet by and by – we have salvation now because of His mercy! This means that although we don’t deserve salvation, or the blessings that go with it, God's love for us is so great that He gives it to us anyway.
So, what don't you deserve? Have you been struggling with a sense of failure? Guilt? Discouragement? Inadequacy? If you will receive God’s mercy you can experience freedom, peace and victory.
Have you blown it? And blown it again, and again? Fallen short of your own expectations? Failed in the eyes of others? Receive God’s mercy today, and step back into a place of hope and confidence.
Have you fallen from such a height, you aren’t sure the Lord has enough mercy for you? Have you committed such blatant sins, you wouldn’t blame God if He gave up you? Well, since He’s rich in mercy, He won’t forsake you. Go ahead and accept the fact that God is not going to give you what you deserve.
Bottom line is this: God loves you and He is rich in mercy!
Say It: "Father, I am in awe of You and Your mercy. I deserve blame, shame and punishment. I deserve judgment and condemnation. But, because of Jesus and the price He paid on the cross, You are rich in mercy towards me. Thank You that I don’t receive what I deserve, but rather, in Your generosity, I receive what I don’t deserve – Your great salvation and goodness. Thank You for loving me and being rich mercy. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.”
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