A HEALTHY CHURCH… is built through mercy and truth

I am always so surprised at how fast time flies in the new year. It is March already! The Christmas and New Year’s festivities are long over. We have now settled into our winter routines. I have thoroughly enjoyed exploring the church theme of “I Will Build” spoken by Jesus himself. In January, we explored how “a healthy church is built by Christ, on Christ.” In February, we explored how “a healthy church is built one life at a time. The March theme is, “A healthy church is built through mercy and truth.” The verse is, Proverbs 16:5-6, “Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished. By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil.”


The Proverb is emphatic! It says that pride, iniquity (willfulness), and evil stinks to God and that they will not go unpunished! Yet, it is by BOTH mercy and truth that these sins are purged. Have you ever had that truthful friend who states facts but communicates them in the most insensitive way possible? Or maybe you have a friend who acts as though they are “always right?” Truth alone is not enough. Truth must flow from a heart of mercy. Truth without mercy cuts. Truth with mercy heals.


I think it is fascinating when you look closely, how balance is all throughout God’s word. A Bible following Christian will not land on extremism unless he ignores certain portions of scripture. Do you want to get rid of pride, iniquity, and evil? You need the pure, unadulterated, and undiluted truth of God. Does God have a merciful side as well? He absolutely does. Does either mercy or truth trump each other? No. You cannot have one without the other and remain Biblical. You cannot abandon truth in your own life or you will allow pride, iniquity, and evil to reign. Also, you cannot abandon mercy or you will have no heart for others. 


Have you pondered the moment when Jesus wept over Jerusalem? If Jesus were only cold hard 100% truth he would not have wept but he did weep because he is 100% truth and also 100% mercy. 


The parallels are clear: Every Christian needs 100% truth, coming from a 100% merciful heart. Neither undermines the other. This applies to our own personal lives, our families lives, and the lives of those around us.