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A Prayer for Mercy - Part 1 of 2

Baptist Bible Hour / Lasserre Bradley, Jr.
The Truth Network Radio
July 12, 2022 12:00 am

A Prayer for Mercy - Part 1 of 2

Baptist Bible Hour / Lasserre Bradley, Jr.

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July 12, 2022 12:00 am

“Let thy mercies come also unto me, O Lord, even thy salvation, according to thy word” (Psalm 119:41).

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Oh, for a thousand tongues to sing, my great Redeemer's praise, Thou forest of my God and King, Thou triumphs of his grace.

This is Lecair Bradley, Jr., welcoming you to another broadcast of the Baptist Bible Hour. He leadeth me, O blessed thought, O Word, with heavenly comfort fraught. What e'er I do, where e'er I be, still tis God's hand that leadeth me. He leadeth me, he leadeth me, by his own hand he leadeth me, is faithful for where I would be, for by his hand he leadeth me.

Sometimes it sings of deepest blooms, sometimes where Eden's flowers bloom. I want a chill or tumbled sea, still tis his hand that leadeth me. He leadeth me, he leadeth me, by his own hand he leadeth me, is faithful for where I would be, for by his hand he leadeth me. Lord, I would clap thy hand in mine, nor ever, ever glorify, content whatever thought I see, since it's my God that leadeth me. He leadeth me, he leadeth me, by his own hand he leadeth me, is faithful for where I would be, for by his hand he leadeth me. And when my task on earth is done, then by thy grace of victory's won, in death's home way I will not flee, since God through joy have leadeth me. He leadeth me, he leadeth me, by his own hand he leadeth me, is faithful for where I would be, for by his hand he leadeth me. In our studies in Psalm 119, we come to a section today that we entitle A Prayer for Mercy. And surely that's something to which we can all relate because we know that we stand continually in need of the mercy of God. I pray the message will be a blessing to you. If it is, we'd like to hear from you.

Our mailing address is Baptist Bible Hour, Box 17037, Cincinnati, Ohio 45217. If you were standing before a judge, having been accused of breaking the law, and you knew that you were guilty, you would realize that trying to make excuses, no doubt such excuses would seem rather feeble and inappropriate to the judge, and would not be the correct way to plead your case. It's just a fact you have done wrong.

You violated the law. It would be an order to cast yourself upon the mercy of the court. I was wrong, I regret what I did, and I ask for mercy. The thought of asking for mercy is foreign to many people.

They really have no sense of their own unworthiness. They can't imagine that they've ever done anything so terribly wrong that it would require mercy for them to be forgiven. But mercy is a word that is used repeatedly in the Word of God. And when we come to this next segment of Psalm 119, we find before us a prayer for mercy. We read, beginning with verse 41 of Psalm 119, Let thy mercies come also unto me, O Lord, even thy salvation according to thy word. So shall I have wherewith to answer him that reproacheth me, for I trust in thy word. And take not the word of truth utterly out of my mouth, for I have hoped in thy judgments. So shall I keep thy law continually for ever and ever. And I will walk at liberty, for I seek thy precepts. I will speak of thy testimonies also before kings, and will not be ashamed. And I will delight myself with thy commandments which I have loved. My hands also will I lift up unto thy commandments which I have loved, and I will meditate in thy statutes. We see here a desire for salvation. Let thy mercies come also unto me, O Lord, even thy salvation. He recognizes need. He says, let thy mercies come unto me. He knows that he needs mercy. He needs mercy because of guilt. In Psalm 51, as David prayed following his great sin, he said of the first verse, Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness, according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies, blot out my transgressions. David knew that he could make no defense for his actions.

They were deplorable. His heart was broken. He was cast down.

He realized what a terrible offense it was. Before men and before God. And so he has to ask for mercy. Lord, hear me, have mercy on me, according to the multitude of thy tender mercies, blot out my transgressions.

How wonderful to know that there are many mercies, a multitude of mercies, tender mercies. This was the only plea that he could possibly make. I've violated your law. I've dishonored your name.

I've done what's wrong. I need mercy. Have mercy upon me. Romans chapter 3 verse 19 speaks of the fact that all the world has become guilty before God. The preceding verses describe in vivid detail the corruption of man's fallen nature. In verse 10 it says, All have sinned and come short of the glory of God. It goes on to say, There is none that understandeth. There is none that seeketh after God. Their throat is an open sepulchre.

The poison of aspens under their lips. Their mouth is full of cursing and bitterness. And it concludes by saying that all the world, every member of Adam's family, stands guilty before God. We are violators of his law. We are born with a fallen sinful nature.

So we stand in need of mercy. James chapter 2 and verse 10 says that if we have offended even in one point, we are guilty of it all. There's a tendency in human nature to try to defend ourselves. And so when we talk about being a violator of the law, that may sound rather harsh. I don't like to think of myself as being guilty before God, as having violated his law, as being a rebel. But here he's telling us that even if we're trying to make out a case for ourselves, if we're recalling some things that we consider to be worthy deeds, we're still condemned. Because if we have offended in one point, broken one part of the law, we're guilty.

Think about it. Jesus said the law is summarized in this. I shall love the Lord thy God with all thy mind, heart, soul and strength and thy neighbor as thyself.

Where do you stand even with that summarization of the law? None of us could claim that all of our lifetime we have loved God supremely. We have always put him first. Then in all of our thinking, in all of our actions, we have loved God above everything else. We've never been selfish, never tried to implement our own plans, do things our own way, do what we want to do. We've always been submissive to the God of heaven.

You know, that's not true. So you've violated the law. What about the second part, loving your neighbor as yourself?

Flunk that one too, right? So, seeing that you have offended God, you have broken his law, you stand in need of mercy. Think about some of the specific sins. Giving way to anger, harboring bitterness against another person, seeking revenge, wanting to get even, wanting to harm somebody because you feel they've done you wrong and you want to get back at them. What about the lust of the flesh? All of the sensual desires, the sinful desires, the desires that move you in the wrong direction as to what you look at and what you read and what you hear and what you think and what you do. Pride, the desire for self-glory, that self-righteous attitude where you would feel yourself to be superior to others, even as expressed by the Pharisee when I said, I thank thee God that I'm not his other man, I'm not unjust, I'm not an extortioner.

Fast twice in the week, give tithes of all that I possess. His self-esteem was out the roof, but his prayer didn't go far. God didn't hear his prayer. Yes, there's a need of mercy because of guilt. And there's a need of mercy because of a sense of unworthiness. Knowing that we're guilty should certainly bring about a sense of unworthiness, but even when we feel that God has been merciful to us and drawn us to himself and forgiven our sins, there's never a time in our walk that we can come before the Lord and say, Now, Lord, I feel that I'm entitled to all of these abundant blessings and mercies because of my worthy conduct. At our best, we have to confess that we are but unprofitable servants. The patriarch Jacob said in Genesis 32, verse 10, I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies and of all the truth which thou hast showed unto thy servant. For with my staff I passed over this Jordan, and now I am become two bands.

Jacob was running from the wrath of his brother Esau, but when he lives then for a time with his uncle Laban, God blessed him and prospered him in so many ways. He says, I've become two bands. I've got a large family.

I've got flocks and herds. I've been blessed abundantly, but I'm not worthy of the least of his mercies. You see, when we understand that we are unworthy and undeserving, then we're going to be praying the kind of prayer that the psalmist prays here in Psalm 119. We're going to be asking for mercy.

I'm not entitled to anything. I can't make any demands, but I need mercy. Bless me according to thy mercy.

And then mercy is needed because of our weakness. Jeremiah expresses that in the book of Lamentations chapter 3. In verse 18, and I said, my strength and my hope is perished from the Lord. Now that's a pretty low state. When you're so far down that you say, my strength is gone.

You ever been there? Said, I can't take anymore. My burdens are too heavy. My troubles are too great. I've had so many setbacks, so many things have discouraged me.

I just can't take it anymore. And often at that point somebody says, I don't even have any hope that it's going to get better. And maybe begin to have question about their relationship with the Lord. I wonder, does God really love me? If God loves me and I'm one of his children, why hasn't he protected me from all of these troubles that have been so disturbing? So the prophet Jeremiah, who is a chosen vessel unto the Lord, yet reaches this time of darkness in his life when he says, my strength and my hope is perished.

Remembering my affliction and my misery, the wormwood and the gall, my soul hath them still and remembers that it is humbled in me. He was humbled by it. He wasn't angry at God. He wasn't blaming God. Although, he said the Lord had set him as a mark for the arrow. God had set the arrow of affliction and touched him.

He said, even when I tried to pray, he shut out my prayer. But he's not resentful. He's humbled. My soul is humbled in me. And then he finds hope. This I recall to mine, therefore have I hope. At this darkest moment of despair, feeling to be without strength and without hope, I remember something.

Therefore, my hope is renewed. What does he remember? It's of the Lord's mercies. What are we talking about?

We're talking about mercy. It is of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed because his compassion fails not. They are new every morning. Great is thy faithfulness. That's good to know, isn't it? His mercies are new every morning.

Has that not been your experience? Even in your darkest days, your lowest moments, your most difficult times, when you say, I don't know if I can go on. But when you lay down at night, you say, Lord, if you don't give me strength, I'll never even be able to get up in the morning. I can't face another day. And you woke up and somehow there was a sense that God had heard your prayer.

Though circumstances hadn't changed, you were ready to face the day. And God gave you hope and strength beyond anything you could have imagined. It's of the Lord's mercies that we're not consumed. So mercy is needed because of guilt. Mercy is needed because of unworthiness.

Mercy is needed because of weakness. And the mercy of God is available to us. And so he recognized his need and he prayed for mercy. That's an appropriate prayer. Hebrews chapter 4 verse 16, we're encouraged to pray for mercy. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in the time of need.

We come, where? To the throne of grace. That's a beautiful word, grace. Grace means that you're looking for something you know you don't deserve. Grace is God being gracious to you in spite of your sin and your failure. Later you come to the throne of grace and what do you find there? You come to obtain mercy.

That's what you can expect. And to find grace in the time of need. That's an appropriate prayer. We talked recently about the importance of praying prayers that are biblical. When you're praying the promises of God, you can look for an answer. If you're praying to keep things on your own lust, if you're praying selfishly, if you're greedy, you can't expect that prayer to be heard. But if you're praying a biblical prayer, you're praying something that's in harmony with God's will, you're praying something that God has already promised to provide, you're on good ground. And so we're encouraged to pray for mercy.

We look at Psalm 6 verse 1, 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 sorvexed.

But thou, O Lord, how long? Return, O Lord, deliver my soul. O save me for thy mercy's sake. Here once again, the psalmist is asking for mercy.

My soul is vexed. Lord, don't chasten me in thy hot displeasure. Though I might be entitled to it, I pray for something better. I'm asking for mercy.

And then look at the response in verse 9. The Lord hath heard my supplication. The Lord will receive my prayer. You see, praying for mercy is appropriate. We're encouraged to pray for it in Hebrews chapter 4.

We have an example of it in Psalm 6. David prayed for mercy and the Lord heard his supplication. We referred to the self-righteous Pharisee who boasted about what he had done and what he had not done, but in vivid contrast in the same lesson the publican smote upon his breast and what was his prayer? God be merciful to me, the sinner. And his prayer was heard.

This man went down to his house justified rather than the other. How encouraging then, if you understand that you need mercy, that we have ample evidence in the scripture that God is a merciful God and He will hear you when you pray such a prayer. And then he connects this mercy with salvation, essentially one and the same. The mercy of God is the deliverances of God, the salvation of God. Let thy mercies come also unto me, even thy salvation. When we think about the fact that God is a holy God, God is a just God, God will punish sin, then it's remarkable to think about the fact that He is also a loving God and a merciful God.

We see those two brought together in Isaiah chapter 45 verse 21. Tell ye, and bring them near, yea, let them take counsel together, who hath declared this from ancient time, who hath told it from that time. Have not I the Lord? And there is no God beside me, a just God and a Savior.

There is none beside me. Look at that, a just God and a Savior. God is not going to compromise His character, His holiness.

He's not going to ignore the violation of His law. Sin must be dealt with. He is a just God, but He's also a Savior. Oh, what encouraging words to a person who knows, I need a Savior because I have violated His law. I have offended this just and holy God, but He's a Savior.

So what does He say? Verse 22, look unto me and be ye saved all the ends of the earth, for I am God and there is none else. You say, I need salvation, I need a Savior.

He said, look to me. I'm not only a just God, but I am a Savior. So the psalmist desires salvation. He calls it thy salvation because salvation is from God. Jonah said, after being delivered from the belly of the whale, the Lord directing its course and it spewed him out on dry land. In Jonah chapter 2 verse 9, he says, salvation is of the Lord.

And Jonah knew it very, very well. All kinds of salvation, every aspect of salvation. Salvation of our soul is of the Lord. Salvation from trouble is of the Lord. Salvation from the whale's belly was of the Lord.

In the book of Titus chapter 3, we find a clear statement of the fact that it is all of God. Man is forever looking for some way to interject his own effort and take some credit for what he has contributed to it, but the fact remains that salvation is all of God. Titus chapter 3 verse 5 says, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy.

That's what we're talking about, mercy. It's not according to our works of righteousness, but according to his mercy that he saved us by the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Ghost. This salvation is of God. It includes many mercies, many, many mercies involved in this great salvation. In 2 Timothy chapter 1 verse 9, speaking of God, it says, who hath saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began. We trace back this stream of mercy to the source and where do we find it? It's in God.

Where did it originate? Before the foundation of the world. When God according to his mercy said, I will be their God and they shall be my people. He marked them out. God was not obligated to save anybody. He could have left the whole human race where they were, fallen in Adam, guilty, corrupt, alienated from God. He would have been perfectly just to have left them all there. But he determined to save a multitude.

He made choice of them. He saved us then according to his own purpose that was given us in Christ Jesus. When was it given to us? In a covenant sense it was given to us before the world began. As Job expressed it before the morning stars sang together and the sons of God shouted for joy. Before God ever said, let there be light and there was light. Before this earth ever was formed and created by the almighty God. God was thinking about his people. God knew every one of them by name.

He said, they're mine. Isn't that amazing? Well, I'm glad you've been with us today. If you'd like to help keep the program on the air, you can make a donation by going to our website at BaptistBibleHour.org. Now, till we greet you at this same time tomorrow, this is L'Sara Bradley, Jr. bidding you goodbye and may God bless you. It is my story, this is my song, praising my Savior all the day long. This is my story, this is my song, praising my Savior, praising my Savior, praising my Savior all the day long.
Whisper: medium.en / 2022-11-27 17:55:15 / 2022-11-27 18:04:07 / 9

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