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  • Writer's pictureThe Hermit of Antipolo

Grace and Mercy (Thought for the Day 114)

March 13, 2024Today’s readings:Isaiah 49:8-15Psalm 145:8-9,13-14,17-18John 5:17-30

     

    

     “The Lord is gracious and merciful” (Ps 145:8a). Grace and mercy are two divine attributes of God. They go together. Mercy is about God not punishing us as we deserve for the wrong we do; grace is about God favoring us with the good we do not deserve. Without the mercy of God, we would be on our way to hell; without the grace of God, we cannot find our way to heaven.


     God is “slow to anger and abounding in mercy” (Ps 145:8b), but this is not license to commit sin. His mercy is an invitation to repentance. God is also “good to all, compassionate toward all your works.” (Ps 145:9). He sees our works that are often not in accordance with His will, but extends grace so that we might be led by His Spirit and eventually find the right path.


       What a wonderful and loving God we have.


  • “The Lord is trustworthy in all his words, and loving in all his works.” (Ps 145:13b). We can put our faith in Jesus and never be disappointed. “I form you and set you as a covenant for the people” (Is 49:8c).

  • “The Lord supports all who are falling and raises up all who are bowed down.” (Ps 145:14). We can turn to Jesus when facing the challenges, woes and afflictions in life, being our help and salvation. “On the day of salvation I help you.” (Is 49:8b).

  • “The Lord is just in all his ways, merciful in all his works.” (Ps 145:17). Jesus wants us to experience the fullness of God’s love, starting with being merciful to us and then accompanying us in the way we are to go. “For the Lord comforts his people and shows mercy to his afflicted.” (Is 49:13b).

  • “The Lord is near to all who call upon him, to all who call upon him in truth.” (Ps 145:18). Jesus is always there for us, guiding us in the way of truth. We just need to call upon him and put our lives in his hands. “In a time of favor I answer you” (Is 49:8a).

     Now God’s love and mercy are not just for us to have a good life in this world, but so that we can truly be God’s people, to attain to our eternal destiny, and to serve Him. We are God’s instruments for the life of the world, to carry on with Jesus’ mission.


     God sent His Son Jesus to restore people to Himself and to bring salvation to all. “My Father is at work until now, so I am at work.” (Jn 5:17). Now Jesus has accomplished his earthly mission, but people still need to hear the good news of salvation in him. So then Jesus sends us. It is our turn. We should say, “Until now God is at work, Jesus is at work, so now we are at work.”


      Our basic task is to proclaim Christ. He is the only way to the Father. Only he can bring us to heaven. “Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes in the one who sent me has eternal life and will not come to condemnation, but has passed from death to life.” (Jn 5:24). God is merciful and gracious. It is not only His nature, but is intended to enable and empower us as Jesus’ servants, disciples, apostles and prophets.


      Jesus says, “Amen, amen, I say to you, the hour is coming and is now here when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live.” (Jn 5:25). Jesus brings us from death to life. He is Mercy and Grace.

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