Mercy means “compassion or forgiveness shown toward someone whom it is within one’s power to punish or harm.” Mercy is not getting what we deserve.
Mercy moves the offender from a negative balance up to zero.
“I’ve paid all your bills.”
“What? Really? –Oh, thank you! thank you!”
Grace is often defined as “unmerited favor.”
Grace is getting what we don’t deserve.
Grace moves the offender from a zero balance to having plentiful funds.
“I’ve given you the lottery.”
“What? How can this be?…This is too good to be true.”
The house of one of the families in our church was burglarized years ago. In spite of the shock and grief over their loss, they asked the LORD in prayer what they should do in response to this crime committed against them.
What would you surmise the LORD would say?
God answered them: Sponsor each of the criminal’s children through four years of college.
And so they did.
That, my friend, is grace.
1 Peter 1:3
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
Mercy triumphs over judgment.
Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
1 Timothy 1:16
But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his immense patience as an example for those who would believe in him and receive eternal life.
2 Corinthians 4:1
Therefore, since through God’s mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart.
Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.
It does not, therefore, depend on human desire or effort, but on God’s mercy.
Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
Out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given.
For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all
No! We believe it is through the grace of our Lord Jesus that we are saved, just as they are.
However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.
Now I commit you to God and to the word of his grace, which can build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.
and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.
But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many!
The law was brought in so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more,
so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.
And if by grace, then it cannot be based on works; if it were, grace would no longer be grace.
1 Corinthians 15:10
But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them—yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me.
2 Corinthians 6:1
As God’s co-workers we urge you not to receive God’s grace in vain.
2 Corinthians 12:9
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
You who are trying to be justified by the law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace.
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—