Thankful for God’s Mercy

Thankful for God's MercyText: 1 Timothy 1:12-16

There are many things for which we can be thankful. In this lesson, we are going to talk about being thankful for God’s mercy.

To Be Thankful, There Must Be…

  1. A giver – the giver of all good things is God (James 1:17)
  2. A recipient – one who is to receive the gift
  3. A gift that is accepted – not rejected, neglected, or discarded
  4. An appreciation of the gift – recognize its value; the greater the value attributed to it, the more grateful we will be for it
  5. A demonstration of gratitude – spoken or active; done with sincerity

The Gift of God’s Mercy

  • Mercy means “to have compassion, pity on” (Strong’s) – this is related to grace; grace is giving us what we do not deserve; mercy is NOT giving us what we DO deserve
  • When punishment is deserved, mercy causes God to withhold/delay it (Deuteronomy 13:12-18)
  • This is necessarily tied to salvation (Titus 3:5; 1 Peter 1:3) – Paul’s life was an example of God’s mercy to give hope to all who believe (1 Timothy 1:15-16)
  • Without God’s mercy, we would have no hope (Ephesians 2:4-5, 12)

We Must Accept God’s Mercy

  • God’s kindness is meant to lead us to repentance (Romans 2:4) – we have all sinned (Romans 3:23), but we need to turn from our sin (Romans 6:12-14; 12:1); as we do this, we are to pray to God to be merciful and forgive us (Luke 18:13)
  • However, not everyone will accept God’s mercy (Romans 2:5)
  • In order to receive God’s mercy, we must show mercy to others (Matthew 5:7) – forgive others when they sin against us (Matthew 6:14-15; Luke 17:3-4); do not hold a grudge against others (James 5:9)

We Must Appreciate God’s Mercy

  • First we need to acknowledge our own sin (1 John 1:10; Romans 3:23) – our sin makes us deserving of death (Romans 6:23); we haven’t suffered that yet because God is merciful
  • This is about more than just mercy that has been extended to us individually – if God was not a merciful God, we would not have even had a chance to live, let alone be saved
  • What would have happened if God was not merciful, or if He stopped being merciful? – Adam and Eve would have been killed immediately after sinning in the Garden (Genesis 2:17; 3:19); all mankind would have been destroyed in the flood (Genesis 6:5-9); the nation of Israel would have been destroyed (Ezekiel 6:1-8) and with it the promise of Christ (Genesis 22:18); Jesus would not have gone to the cross (Matthew 26:51-54) as an angelic army would have protected Him; the world would have been destroyed long ago (2 Peter 3:9), yet God is patient

We Must Demonstrate Gratitude

  • Thank God for the mercy that He has shown to us and to all mankind (1 Timothy 1:12-13)
  • Give up sin and obey the Lord (Romans 2:4-8)
  • Show mercy to others (Luke 6:36; cf. Matthew 18:23-35) – obedience without mercy is not pleasing to God (Matthew 23:23)

Conclusion

  • We are worthy of punishment for our sins, yet God is merciful
  • He has delayed punishment so that we have time to repent
  • Let us take advantage of His kindness and patience and be obedient to Him now so we can be saved

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