Error on the Side of Grace
“For judgment is without mercy to the one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment.” James 2:13
“Oh, how quickly we forget”, was the phrase uttered by John Caruthers who is since been with the Lord. John was my counselor when I was in discipleship at the Colony and I remember sitting there discussing a topic having to do with forgiveness. I explained to John how this person was insincere and was just trying to get out of trouble, but he looked at me and said “You may be wrong, therefore error on the side of Grace”.
Now I now we shouldn’t be a door mat for people to continue to wipe there dirty feet on but there is a supernatural act of God that takes place when we give up our right to get even. It’s as if by forgiving the offense we’ve in a sense washed their feet by symbolically removing the dirt, so when they wipe their feet on us there is no dirt that remains, only friction.
Verse 13 seems to be a center piece that answers both issues in chapter 2, partiality, showing favor to those in higher society and a working faith by doing outreach. Maybe there are people who, because of their social status we tend to extend the blind eye, because of their success, but the one who has made some bad choices we tend to say “Sleep in the bed you made”.
James is addressing a couple of issues which in my opinion makes the church untasteful to the outside world. I applaud the ministries that aid in the plight of poverty or the places like The Colony of Mercy which extends the right hand of fellowship to those who have made poor choices and are bound in sin, who cry out for help.
My problem is how quickly I forget that I was one of those men, desperate and although my initial motives weren’t pure, God put people in my life that ignored the motives and trusted Him with the results by putting their faith to work. I wanna be one of those people, able to minister without judgment, if I error I would rather error on the side of mercy.
Jesus, in Luke 7:47 when a “woman of sin” came in and washed His feet with oil said of her “Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much. But to whom little is forgiven, the same loves little”.
So I guess the question is, how much have you been forgiven? Rob Russomano graduated from the Colony of Mercy and serves full-time at America’s Keswick. You can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
Think About This: The more we get to know God, the more we want to know him better. —D.A. Carson
This Week’s Verse to Memorize: The Lord is good to those who wait [confidently] for Him, to those who seek Him [on the authority of God’s word]. Lamentations 3:20 (Amplified Bible)