KNOWING GOD

 

 

Psalm 103:8-14

KNOWING GOD’S MERCY – Page 1

Knowing God #6

 

If you think about it, every one of us at one time or another has been shown mercy. Not having to pay a bill, not receiving a deserved punishment, not being penalized for handing in a late paper, receiving help on a job or project around the house, that was your own responsibility.

 

The greatest shower of mercy who ever lived is God.

 

Lamentations 3:22-23 - It is of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. [23] They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.

 

God shows mercy to everyone, or we’d all be dead. We’ve all sinned. We’ve all violated God’s holy laws. And yet God does not immediately cast us into hell when we violate His commandments. If he did, earth would have been unpopulated long ago!

 

God’s greatest show of mercy was at the cross of Calvary where His Son died for your sins and mine. Romans 8:6-8

 

Now, through faith in His Son, God shows us the mercy of forgiveness and ever lasting life.   

Ephesians 2:8-9

 

God’s mercy is such a tremendous blessing, not just at the moment of salvation, but throughout the life of the Christian.

Psalm 103:8-14 gives the believer a clear understanding of some of the mercy of God. It also gives the one who is yet to come to Christ some encouragement to be born again.

 

We want to continue our series on knowing God this morning by concentrating on Knowing God’s Mercy, as found in Psalm 103:8-14. 

 

THE DECLARATION OF GOD’S MERCY – Vs. 8

 

Psalm 103:8 - The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy.

 

In this verse God declares outright that He is the God of mercy.  “Merciful is the adjective form of a word which means to “love deeply”, “be compassionate”, or “have mercy”.

 

When God described Himself to Moses he said in

Exodus 34:6, …The Lord, The Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth,

 

Because God is compassionate He cares about you!

He is concerned about your well being, your needs, your eternal life!

With God you are not a number on a computer printout. You are a real person!

 

God is also gracious. We think of grace as “unmerited favor”. Because God is gracious to us, He is showing us favor that we do not deserve.

 

Not only does this verse declare that the Lord is merciful and gracious, but slow to anger.

 

There are many of us who can lose our tempers at the drop of hat. But God is holy, and does nothing unholy.

Although God’s righteous wrath is a terrible thing to experience, God is slow to anger.

 

If God was not slow to anger, the children of Israel would have never made it to the Promised Land. Between their complaining, immorality, and idolatry, there was enough for God to wipe them out!

 

This verse also tells us that God is plenteous in mercy.

This means that God abounds in love or in loving kindness.

 

Get this through your head, beloved. God loves you.

This is not just a trite saying.

 

THE DESCRIPTION OF GOD’S MERCY – Vss. 9-10

 

Psalm 103:9 – He will not always chide: neither will he keep his anger for ever.

 

In relation to God’s children, God does not always chide. That is, He is not always scolding us!   

 

Could God find reasons to scold His children all the time?

Indeed, He could!

None of us are perfect. We could all do better.

However, as justified as scolding us would be, God realizes that we would easily be discouraged if all we ever heard was scolding.

 

When He scolds us He is correcting us so that we confess our sins and do better.

 

Hebrews 12:6 - For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.

 

Also note that God does not keep His anger forever. Psalm 32:5

As Christians, Christ died for our sins.

When we sin as Christians, we do not lose our salvation, but we lose our fellowship.

When we confess our sins, our fellowship with God is restored, and God is no longer angry with us.

 

And when we arrive in Heaven, and face the Judgment Seat of Christ and receive our rewards, and our embarrassments, that will be the end of it. There will be no more anger for any of our sins.   

   

Psalm 103:10 - He hath not dealt with us after our sins; nor rewarded us according to our iniquities.

 

This is a terrific verse for the Christian.

He has not dealt with us after our sins, or we’d be in hell, or at least on the way!

 

God has decided to deal with us in mercy.

Our sins and iniquities He dealt with at the cross and put them on the back of His Son instead of on our backs.   

 

THE DIMENSIONS OF GOD’S MERCY – Vss. 11-12

 

In these two verses we have two pictures of God’s mercy.

One picture deals with height, the other with width.

 

Psalm 103:11 - For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him.

 

How high are the Heavens above the earth?

The distance of the Heavens above the earth are like the Engergizer Bunny, “They keep going, and going, and going”.

The space above the earth goes for billions and trillions of miles.

That’s a lot distance.

That’s a lot of mercy!

 

My friend, I may not know why or how you are hurting today. But I can assure you of God’s mercy in your life.   

 

His mercy toward them that fear him.

If you’ve feared Him enough to trust the Lord Jesus as your Savior His mercy is there for you.

As you fear, that is reverence and respect, Him in your Christian walk you will see evidences of His mercy every day! I suggest that you look for them!

 

Psalm 103:12 - As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.

 

If you travel north you will eventually travel south.

If you travel south you will eventually travel north.

South and north meet at the north and south poles.

However, you can travel east forever and never start heading west.

And you travel west forever and never start heading east.

 

If it were possible to walk straight into space in a straight line, we could head east, and never see someone who is heading west.

When it comes to our sins, God sends them in one direction, and us in the other, never to meet again!

 

My friend, every sin you’ve ever committed is paid for. Every sin you will ever commit is paid for!

When you commit a sin as a Christian, that will not keep you out of Heaven, for your sins are paid for!

 

This does not give you license to sin.

Romans 6:1-2 - What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? [2] God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?

 

Because we have received so much mercy from God, we should not want to sin.  We should not want to add to the list of things that Jesus had to die for!

Because we love our loving God and our wonderful Savior, let’s make every effort to flee from sin, and of course, keep short accounts with God by confessing our sins.   

 

THE DELIGHT OF GOD’S MERCY – Vs. 13

 

Psalm 103:13 - Like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear him.

Unfortunately, for some this verse is not significant because they have not experienced the love of a Father.   

The Psalmist is saying here that as a good Father loves his children, God loves those who fear Him.

 

THE DESIGN OF GOD’S MERCY – Vs. 14

   

Psalm 103:14 - For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust.

 

God knows our frame. He knows that He made us from dust. He never gives us more than we carry can for He’s always there to carry us!

 

HE WILL NOT OVERLOAD YOU WITH TRIALS

HE WILL NOT OVERLOAD YOU WITH TEMPTATION

HE WILL NOT OVERLOAD YOU WITH TASKS

 

 

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