Originally scheduled for May 21
Have you ever considered how much easier it is to learn from an
example than it is to learn from a book? Let’s face it; some of us
are just not cut out for book learning. Before the printing press
this was not a problem. Even today, though, there are advantages to
learning from an example. You don’t have to study; you just have to
keep your eyes open. If you do, you will see not only the example
doing what’s right, but also the world’s reaction. You get to see
how other people treat the example. That’s why Christ, in the Sermon
on the Mount, gave us that little verse. Combined with his example
it lets us see the connection between words and action.
Christ is our example of mercy. We may note certain characteristics
· His example
of mercy is greater than anything we could ever accomplish; the
sacrifice on the Cross. We can imitate but we cannot equal such a
· It is
often called “grace” — the word in the original Greek means “gift”,
for it was freely given. It is a characteristic of mercy that it is
not purchased at the cash register.
As He was rewarded by his heavenly Father, so too are the merciful
here on earth rewarded — with mercy.
Communion is a regular
reminder of the mercy of God. We see in the elements, the bread and
the cup, a reminder of the sacrifice he made. He gave up his body
and blood so that we might be the recipients of God’s mercy. That
alone would make it worth remembering. We might also note that we
take this communion frequently, as if to teach us that we should
offer mercy to others just as consistently. Perhaps most important
of all, the character of mercy shown in communion reminds us that it
must be given, not bargained for. As you partake this morning,
search your mind see if there is someone to whom you should be
showing mercy. Perhaps it is simply the grace of forgiveness that is
needed. Then do so quickly, and without thought to cost or pain.
Blessed are the merciful.