The Spiritual Gift of Mercy

Posted in Romans, Romans 12

Romans 12:8e

The Spiritual Gift of Mercy

Prepared by Dr. John E. Marshall

Romans 12:8e (Holman) . . .showing mercy, with cheerfulness.

When we see the word “mercy” in the New Testament, always associate it with the word “misery.” The gift of mercy entails relieving misery in others.

Anyone with the gift of mercy is tender, yea pulled, toward hurting people. Mercy uses pity, kindness, and compassion to relieve misery, to ease burdens of the sick and dying, bereaved and lonely, persecuted and poor, distressed and sad.

This gift can help several of our ministries: bereavement meals, shut-ins, Victory Mission meals, Flower and Bread Ministry, DivorceCare, Foster Care and Adoption, Special Needs, Medical Responders, Stephen Ministry, Quilting, Second Yarn Works, the Rare Breed shelter for homeless teens, Pregnancy Care Center.

The spiritual gift of mercy is beautiful. Nevertheless, it has at least three dangers to avoid. One, actions without feelings. Attitude must precede action.

Christ-followers often try to do kind deeds solely from a sense of duty or guilt. Knowing we are supposed to be merciful, we try to force mercy rather than let it overflow from a heart full of compassion.

Quintilian, the Roman orator, deemed it cruelty to feed the poor without sympathizing with them. We are not to help others as if throwing bones to a dog.

A Christian has to ma

The Spiritual Gift of Service

Posted in Romans, Romans 12

Romans 12:7a (Lesson 2)

The Spiritual Gift of Service

Prepared by Dr. John E. Marshall

Romans 12:7a (Holman) . . .if service, in service;

The gift of service is a God-given empowerment enabling us to gladly perform practical acts of service to the personal needs of others in Jesus’ name. The Greek word implied a slave’s work, the humblest service of one for another.

Our Lord said He came to serve, not to be served (Matthew 20:28). Thus it is no surprise that service is one of the gifts most often claimed by His followers.

Not every believer has the spiritual gift of service, but all believers are to serve. Sometimes a person will justify harshness, indifference, or laziness by saying they don’t have this gift. This claim is bogus. Serving others has to be a priority for us all. Kindness, Christianity in action, is expected of every believer.

People with the gift of service set the standard for the rest of us. This trait is vital, not peripheral, to what we are about as a church. We may not all share the exuberance of servants, but none of us should ever feel too good to stoop.

We should all serve and help when situations present themselves to us. If we ever feel hesitant to serve, say to ourselves, “My Master washed feet.” Thank you, dear servants, for demonstrating again and again the spirit of our precious Savior.

It is difficult to over-esti