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Tuesday, June 18, 1996

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1 Kings 21:17-29
Psalm 51
Matthew 5:43-48

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mercy, mercy, mercy

"Have mercy on me, O God, in Your goodness." —Psalm 51:3

The Lord "is rich in mercy" (Eph 2:4). His mercy is everlasting (Ps 136). On the very day we tortured and crucified God, the Lord sent warm sunshine, cool breezes, restful sleep, delicious food, refreshing drink, and many other blessings on His executioners. "His sun rises on the bad and the good, He rains on the just and the unjust" (Mt 5:45). The Lord even had mercy on Ahab, the most wicked man of the Old Testament (see 1 Kgs 21:25, 29), and on Saul, the most wicked man in the New Testament (1 Tm 1:15-16). When we rebel against the Lord, He waits for us to give Him the opportunity to run up to us, throw His arms around us, shower us with gifts, and have a dinner in our honor (Lk 15:20ff). The Lord treats us much, much better than we deserve. He is merciful.

However, the Lord does not force His mercy on us. He respects us and our freedom, even when we abuse it. So we must repent, ask for, and accept God's mercy. When we cry out "Lord, have mercy," we imply that we have sinned and need to go to Confession.

The Lord of mercy desires to have mercy on us (Mt 9:13). He is waiting for you to say, and mean, "Lord, have mercy!" Are you going to do it?

Prayer:  Father, may I receive Your mercy before it is too late.

Promise:  "In a word, you must be made perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect." —Mt 5:48

Praise:  Bill, a Bible teacher, suffered a stroke and loss of vision while driving. In His mercy, Jesus did not allow this to occur until just after he and his wife had exited the interstate. Jesus protected them from injury.

Reference:  (For related teaching, order our leaflet, The Secret of Confession.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, November 29, 1995

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 4, 1995