Text: "O Lord, rebuke me not in thine anger, neither chasten me in thy hot displeasure. Have mercy upon me, O Lord; for I am weak: O Lord, heal me; for my bones are vexed. My soul is also sore vexed: but thou, O Lord, how long? Return, O Lord, deliver my soul: oh save me for thy mercies' sake" (Psalm 6:1-4)
It will not be improper to describe the book of Psalms as the book of God's mercies. And indeed almost all the prayer themes we have considered so far in this series have greater emphasis in the book of Psalms than any other book in the bible, hence I called them the PRAYERS OF DAVID.
The word mercy in the King James version, which is the first original translation of the Bible from its original text, was recorded used 261 times, 99 of this usage alone was found in the book of Psalms, that represents over 30% of its overall use in the bible and when you consider that there are 66 books in the bible then you begin to see how David was heavily reliant on God's mercy! The other usage of the word mercy was in its plural form, MERCIES, this was used 44 times in the bible and 19 times this was used in the book of Psalms, the prayers of David! And indeed Paul said in Romans 9:16 that it is not of him that willeth or of him that runneth but of God that showeth mercy. David's life and greatness was a product of God's mercies! The man that was a murderer and an adulterer was the same man God referred as 'a man after my heart'. How much of God's mercies he must have enjoyed!
David acknowledged this plenteous mercy of God as he wrote two psalms based on the mercies of God. You will do well to read Psalm 118&Psalm 136. A few verses from Psalm 136 will not go amiss here!
"O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good: for his mercy endureth forever. O give thanks unto the God of gods: for his mercy endureth forever. O give thanks to the Lord of lords: for his mercy endureth forever. To him who alone doeth great wonders: for his mercy endureth forever. To him, that by wisdom made the heavens: for his mercy endureth forever. To him that stretched out the earth above the waters: for his mercy endureth forever. To him that made great lights: for his mercy endureth for ever: The sun to rule by day: for his mercy endureth for ever:" (Psalm 136:1-8)
Indeed when you read all of this chapter you get the impression that the Psalmist was trying to let us know, everything we are and everything we have is by the mercies of God! And who can contest the veracity of such position? It is because of his mercies we are not consumed and his compassion faileth not! Hallelujah!
The worth of God's mercy cannot be measured, but as I study this subject I discovered there are three general headings or benefits that we can capture the blessings or benefits of Gods mercies under. I quickly go through them below.
IN TIMES OF GRIEVOUS TROUBLES the mercies of God will deliver us. In Psalm 31:9 David cried for God's mercies during times of trouble, "Have mercy upon me, O Lord, for I am in trouble: mine eye is consumed with grief, yea, my soul and my belly". And you read in Psalm 136 you will see a lot of deliverance in times of trouble all wrought by the mercies of God!
IN TIMES OF GRIEVOUS SINS when it seems we have missed our mark, and yes we can miss our mark but we must not miss the mercies of God. David missed it when he committed adultery with Bathsheba and also killed her husband. But as soon as David was convicted by the Holy Spirit of his sins through the ministry of prophet Nathan he went before God immediately, "Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according to unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me"(Psalm 51:1-3).
With such contrite heart and David's plead for mercies, Gods anger was appeased. Gods anger may be great, but His mercies are greater! God's anger may be kindled but Gods mercies can extinguish Gods anger! In Psalm 77:9 the Psalmist asked this question, "Hath God forgotten to be gracious? hath he in anger shut up his tender mercies?". God's anger can never shut God's mercy because we are told that Gods mercy is plenteous! Psalm 103:8 tells us, "The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy. He will not always chide: neither will he keep his anger forever". God's anger is for a while but his mercy is plenteous and without end. Even in the days of provocation Gods mercies tempered God's anger(Read Psalm 106:7). What do you think you have done that God cannot forgive? That's an illusion and deception from the pit of hell. Approach God with a fearful and contrite heart, plead for his mercies and his mercies will wipe away your transgression.
Even for sins that are generational, generational sins that has generational consequences and curses, the mercies of God can stay God's anger for his mercies are from generation to generation!
IN TIMES OF GRIEVOUS NEEDS Paul advised us in Hebrews 4:16 to come boldly before the throne of grace and obtain mercies to help in the time of need! When we are needy and without help, the mercies of God provides succor! Psalm 30:1. David in the time of need cried for God's mercy and his mercies never failed., God's mercy always show up. Blind Bartimaeus when in need of HEALING cried out to the Son Of God, 'have mercy on me son of David' and the son of God touched and healed him.
Mark 10:46-49 records his story. At one point they ask him to shut up, but no devil can shut down the cry for mercy, Jesus stepped in and his need was met. God will not ignore the cry of the needy for mercies! Today God is hearing your cry for mercy. All you need do like David is to acknowledge your need for his mercies and like he answered David and many others, he will answer you. And like David also you also will be able to sing 'of the mercies of the Lord forever I will sing of the MERCIES of the Lord', and with your mouth, you will make known his faithfulness to all generations(Psalm 89:1-2) Amen!