In the famous Sermon on the Mount, as recorded in Matthew 5, we read the following;
7. Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
8. Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
9. Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
10. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for their’s is the kingdom of heaven.
11. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
12. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
Also later we can read in Matthew 9:
11. And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners?
12. But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.
13. But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.
Throughout the life and ministry of our Savior consistently upended the mainstream viewpoint and tradition’s of His day. In the Beatitudes He clarifies on the Mount challenged the mainstream scriptural interpretation of daily life, both actions and thoughts. In the verses quoted in chapter 9 He states the Father desires us to both have and to show mercy to others, quantifying that this trait and action is more important than our attempts at sacrifice.
I cut into both chapters with the intent to emphasize the concepts of mercy. Our Creator loved us enough to allow HIS Son to die in our place, showing us the greatest of both mercy and sacrifice. Mercy because we deserve death, sacrifice because HIS Son chose to accepted the suffering and act of being placed on on the cross to die so others could live.
Our lives, as believers, are to reflect the example of our Saviour. We all fall short, every day we fail, yet every day we are to continue in our walk to be a reflection of GOD’s grace. We need to remember as believers our life is going to have both joy and heartaches, both success and failure; but whatever we encounter, see, hear, choose, or experience, we must always remember, “…But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice:…”.
Have and show mercy to others, we may suffer persecution for our faith, show mercy even when you’re shown none.