Sunday, December 9, 2018

The Mercy of God

December 9 (Luke 1:50)

And his mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation.  (ESV)

The song that Mary wrote after receiving the joyous news that she would be the mother of Jesus continues by acknowledging God’s mercy, but notice the two aspects of that mercy.  It is for those who fear God and it is always available.

When the Bible talks about fearing God, it does not mean the sort of fear that a child, worried about creatures under the bed, experiences in a darkened room.  It is does not mean the fear an adult faces while waiting for results from a biopsy.  It is the awe-filled respect and honor that is proper from humble creatures toward the infinite and majestic God who created them.  And God’s mercy is for all those who are humble before Him.  Those too arrogant and proud to fear Him would never think they needed His mercy in the first place.

Mary also says that this mercy extends from generation to generation.  It was available not only to her but to people of the third, fifteenth, and twenty-first centuries as well.  It is available to every nation and culture on the planet.  Perhaps it is time for you to quit trying to make life work and simply and completely throw yourself upon the mercy of God.  If you do, you will find rest and restoration for your soul as never before.

As a special feature this month, each devotion will include a link to one of the many glorious, musical versions of the “Magnificat.”  Each one includes the Latin text as well.  This week’s selection can be found here.  This is a lager work by Monteverdi, and the “Magnificat” begins at the 1:09:34 mark.

Lord, I need Your mercy to get through this day, to say nothing of this week, and all that lies in store for me.  From temptations my flesh is too weak to resist to demands I do not have the energy to fulfill, I need Your help.  I do not come asking You for anything based on my own merits, but rather ask for Your mercy.  In the name of Jesus, Who showed the greatest of mercies by taking my death to the cross, amen.

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