Truth and mercy

Two components of a relationship with God are truth and mercy. Every relationship with the LORD has these characteristics, so if you know him, you should expect to see truth and mercy. They are evidence that a relationship actually exists. It says in Psalm 117 and 118 that the truth of the LORD and his mercy endureth for ever. That means they are eternal or timeless. God’s truth and mercy are always available.

God’s truth is associated with his work. It says in Psalm 111:7 that “the works of his hands are verity and judgment.” The same word translated verity in this verse is translated as truth in Psalm 117:2 where it says, “the truth of the LORD endureth for ever.” The Hebrew word ’emeth means stability (571). God is trustworthy. He is like a firm foundation that enables a house to stand for many years. Everything he does as a result of our relationship with him will withstand the test of time.

God’s mercy is associated with his love or lovingness toward those whom he has a relationship with. The Hebrew word for God’s mercy, chesed is often translated as loving-kindness. “Chesed implies personal involvement and commitment in a relationship beyond the rule of law…Biblical usage frequently speaks of someone ‘doing,’ ‘showing,’or ‘keeping’ chesed” (2617).

In Psalm 118:22-23 it says, “The stone which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner. This is the LORD’s doing; it is marvelous in our eyes.” The word translated doing in this passage is ’êth (ayth). It is properly translated as nearness. Eth is generally thought of as being with or by someone. Jesus quoted psalm 118:22-23 in his parable of the husbandmen (Matthew 21:42) except in the version of the story recorded in Mark 12:1-11, instead of saying this is the LORD’s doing, it indicates that Jesus said, “This was the LORD’s doing” (Mark 12:11).

The parable of the husbandmen is about the owner of a vineyard who tries to collect fruit from his husbandmen, but instead is left empty handed. Jesus’ reference to the stone that was rejected implied that he knew the chief priests and Pharisees were planning to kill him (Mark 12:12). In Psalm 118:17-18, it says, “I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the LORD. The LORD hath chastened me sore: but he hath not given me over unto death.”

The love that God demonstrates is not sentimental, but intended to produce fruit or good results in the form of a visible expression of power (2590). God’s mercy or loving-kindness towards his son Jesus was demonstrated when he raised him from the dead, three days after the chief priests and Pharisees had him put to death. The truth of his resurrection is still be declared 2000 years later.

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