Show Mercy to Get Mercy

Matthew 5:7   7Blessed (happy, to be envied, and spiritually prosperous–with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, regardless of their outward conditions) are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy!

To show mercy means show kindness or forgiveness especially to somebody a person has power over.  One of the greatest examples of someone who knew how to show mercy was David. Before he became the king of Israel, he had to go into hiding because Saul, the current king, wanted to kill him.  He was being hunted by Saul’s army and hid in a cave. 1 Samuel  24 tells the story.  Saul entered the cave where David was hiding, but didn’t know it. David had ample opportunity to kill Saul right then and there, but instead he cut off a piece of his robe. He was merciful to the very man who was trying to take his life. Instead of retaliating, he let him live.

Saul’s son Jonathan and David had been great friends, but since David was on the run for his life, they were unable to continue their friendship. After several years had passed Saul was killed, and David became the king. In 2 Samuel 9:1-3 it says 1AND DAVID said, Is there still anyone left of the house of Saul to whom I may show kindness for Jonathan’s sake?   2And of the house of Saul there was a servant whose name was Ziba. When they had called him to David, he said to him, Are you Ziba? He said, I, your servant, am he.   3The king said, Is there not still someone of the house of Saul to whom I may show the [unfailing, unsought, unlimited] mercy and kindness of God? Ziba replied, Jonathan has yet a son who is lame in his feet. David sought out Jonathan’s son, Mephibosheth and asked him to come to him. Verses 6-7 &  6And Mephibosheth son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, came to David and fell on his face and did obeisance. David said, Mephibosheth! And he answered, Behold your servant!  7David said to him, Fear not, for I will surely show you kindness for Jonathan your father’s sake, and will restore to you all the land of Saul your father [grandfather], and you shall eat at my table always. David didn’t have to honor the grandson of his greatest enemy. If it would have been anyone else they probably would have killed him,  but for his friend Jonathan’s sake David had mercy upon him. Not only did he restore to him the land of his family, he also made sure he would stay in constant fellowship with him by giving him a permanent spot at his table.

David says in Psalm 18: 25With the kind and merciful You will show Yourself kind and merciful, with an upright man You will show Yourself upright. He knew that if he was merciful, he in turn would be shown mercy by God. We can all take a lesson from David. There are opportunities in our lives where we face the choice to bring judgment or show mercy. We have to remember that if we want to have mercy given to us, we first have to show it to others.

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