Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.
The difference between mercy and grace is that God’s mercy refrains from giving us the condemnation that we deserve, while his grace gives us the salvation that we don’t deserve. Two sides of the same coin. We need both.
Thankfully, “He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities” (Ps. 103:10). He delights to show mercy (Mic. 7:18), and summons us to the same high standard.
If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ do that (Lk. 6:32-33).
We are called to love those who aren’t lovable—to be merciful, just as our Father is merciful.
To be merciful like God is to
extend mercy to those who don’t deserve it.