MERCY, GRACE AND FAVOR: WHAT ARE THEY?

. In governance, the president of a country has the power to pardon convicted persons. When he grants such a pardon, the person’s prison sentence is nullified and the convict walks out of jail.

Apr 20, 2024 - 07:49
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MERCY, GRACE AND FAVOR: WHAT ARE THEY?
MERCY, GRACE AND FAVOR: WHAT ARE THEY?

MERCY, GRACE AND FAVOR: WHAT ARE THEY?

By: Elijah Asuo Wiredu

These are concepts that are often used interchangeably. They are worth discussing because they are part of our everyday language and our walk with God.

Mercy is the exemption from judgment. It implies that our actions and inactions merited punishment but God decided to pay us as we deserve. In governance, the president of a country has the power to pardon convicted persons. When he grants such a pardon, the person’s prison sentence is nullified and the convict walks out of jail. This right is known as the prerogative power of MERCY. In Matthew 18:21 Jesus told a parable about an unmerciful servant.

The Parable of the Unmerciful Servant

21 Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?”

22 Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.

23 “Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. 24 As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand bags of gold was brought to him. 25 Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had to be sold to repay the debt.

26 “At this the servant fell on his knees before him. ‘Be patient with me,’ he begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’ 27 The servant’s master took pity on him, canceled the debt, and let him go.

 

In the parable. Peter asked Jesus a question about Forgiveness. Jesus answered the question by comparing God to a rich man who forgave the debts a servant owed him- meaning the servant to given the freedom not to pay the money. This is MERCY. It is important to note that it is in the image of God to grant MERCY instead of judgment.

 

Favor

Favor is when God chooses to like someone against all odds or protocols. It can be described as “tangible evidence that a person has the approval of the Lord” especially, when the person has not done anything to merit such liking.

Romans 9:11-14

11 (For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;)

12 It was said unto her, The elder shall serve the younger.

13 As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.

14 What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid.

We can infer from the text above that when God chose Jacob over Esau, the boys were not even born yet. God chose to love Jacob. The 14th verse implies that we can’t say anything about it. He is God and he does what pleases. If he chooses you, then you are favored because he could have chosen anyone else.

Grace

Grace refers to the blessings we receive from God that we don’t deserve or that we have not worked for. It is also the unmerited divine assistance given to humans. Grace can be of two types: common grace and saving grace. Common grace is God’s grace available to every human being equally. This includes the provision of air, food and essentials, water bodies, sunlight, etc. Saving grace is God’s grace that gives us the chance for salvation.

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