The Merciful

The fifth trait, mercifulness, is also one that every born-again person naturally possesses by virtue of his having the merciful God living within him. Those who possess no mercy are not blessed of God and reveal that they are not partakers of His grace. The apostle James concurs: “Judgment will be merciless to one who has shown no mercy” (Jas. 2:13). If one stands before God and receives a merciless judgment, do you think he would go to heaven or hell?[1] The answer is obvious.

Jesus once told a story of a servant who had received great mercy from his master, but who was then unwilling to extend some mercy to his fellow servant. When his master discovered what had happened, he “handed him over to the torturers until he should repay all that was owed him” (Matt 18:34). All his formerly-forgiven debt was reinstated. Then Jesus warned His disciples,”My heavenly Father will also do the same to you, if each of you does not forgive his brother from your heart” (Matt. 18:35). Again, non-merciful people will not receive mercy from God. They are not among the blessed.

[1] Interestingly, the very next verse in the book of James is, “What use is it, my brethren, if a man says he has faith, but he has no works? Can that faith save him?” (Jas. 2:14).