|“”If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.” Luke 14:26
“Jesus calls you to an exclusive relationship with Him. He will countenance no competition; your allegiance to Him must be total. Your devotion to Him must be so thorough that the love you have for any and all attachments in life by comparison is like the contrast between love and hate.” Walter A. Henrichsen (“Walt”)
Thoughts from the Diary of a Desperate Man by Walter Henrichsen
“For judgment is without mercy to one who has shown no mercy; yet mercy triumphs over judgment.” James 2:13
Mercy is the setting aside of justice. You show mercy to those who deserve justice, but do not execute it for one reason or another. Early in the Old Testament God talks a great deal about people needing mercy, but little of people showing mercy to one another. The idea of mercy begins to be manifest in the prophets: “He hath shewed thee, 0 man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy…”22
God charges the state with the task of justice, the individual with forgiveness. When the state seeks to be merciful, oppression and injustice reign. When the individual seeks justice, relationships are broken, for all are sinners. Thus when the tasks of the state and individual merged during the Theocracy, forgiveness between individuals tended to be neglected. For God did not institute a police system in Israel; the people were responsible for policing themselves, ensuring justice in their society.
For this reason the Psalms show a vindictive side to the people of God. They were charged with executing justice. Paul says, “Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves….Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.” 23 Not until you come to the New Testament where the people of God are no longer a Theocracy, do you find this shift from the individual carrying the responsibility of executing justice to leaving it in the hand’s of God.
The thirst for justice, common to all people, can only be suspended in favor of mercy if you maintain the conviction that God will avenge injustice for you – if not in this life, then in eternity. A friend lost his only son in a senseless murder and freely forgave the assassin, seeking to lead him to Christ. This was possible because of his understanding this truth. Never confuse the God ordained role of the state with that of the individual when it comes to justice and mercy.
22 Micah 6:8
Genesis 41-42 Matthew 12:1-23 (New King James Version)
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Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7
Therefore, I tell you, whatever you ask for in Prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. Mark 11:24
Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. James 5:16
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.” Psalm 91:2
Devote yourselves to Prayer, being watchful and thankful. Colossians 4:2
Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The Prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. James 5:16
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