Recovering Pharisee-Step 4

Notes from the book,
“12 Steps for the Recovering Pharisee (like me)”, by John Fischer

Step 4:  We realize/admit that we have decided that we don’t want to get what we deserve after all, and we don’t want anyone else to either.

     Mercy is God’s steady, persistent refusal to wash His hands of a wayward people.  God is both just and merciful, and there should be no doubt here which one of those qualities He favors.  Exod 20:5-6; Num 14:18-19; Psa 103:10; 145:9;

     Now is not the Day of Judgment; it is the day of salvation.  We are storing up wrath when we condemn others, because this is a time in history when God is overlooking these things so He can attend to the salvation of many as possible. There is a reason for God’s restraint. The longer He waits, the more who can be saved.  Rom 2:1-5; 2 Pet 3:9, 15; 2 Cor 6:2; Jam 2:12-13;

     Sometimes I wonder if as Christians we can prefer the destruction of our enemies over their salvation.  Would that be cause for great rejoicing, or would we go off and sulk somewhere like Jonah?  One of the ironic similarities between heaven and hell is that no one in either place thinks they got what they deserve.  Our first thought should be that our enemies might repent and receive the same mercy that God has shown us.  Jon 4:2, 9-11; 2 Cor 5:17-20; Rom 10:1-4, 17; 11:22-36; 12:3,10,16; 13:8; 14:7-13; 15:1-6


2 thoughts on “Recovering Pharisee-Step 4

  1. I think we just don’t know what day it is. Today is the Day of Salvation. Not the Day of Judgment. We get it twisted and try to play God – the only true judge.

    God delt with me about how to deal with someone who was really killing me spiritually. He said to be merciful to them. This was one of the reasons why He gave me to do it.

    Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know him who said, “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” and again, “The Lord will judge his people.” It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. Hebrews 10:28-31 NIV

    Judgment is for those who willfully sin, reject God’s law and treat the blood of Jesus in a common way (in a manner that is trivial). You are treating the blood of Jesus in a trivial way when it is used to justify self but condemn others. Mercy is always covered by the blood. Jesus’ blood covers it all. The blood was shed for all, not just for your personal benefit. We are trying to get souls saved and in the kingdom now. We are not trying to try them and find the guilty now. This is the Day of Salvation—not the Day of Judgment. To withhold mercy is to stand in judgment of your brother or sister. This means you are playing God.

    Lev 16:14-16; 2 Cor 6:2; Matt 18:10-11; Rom 2:1; 14:4; Jam 4:12; 1 Pet 2:19-23; Acts 17:30-31; 1 Cor 4:5; 2 Tim 4:1


  2. This perspective makes our petty judgements and resentments seem painfully selfish… and frankly… well, petty.

    It is such a complex thing to unravel from our thinking. Judgement that is. Especially for those of us who have practiced it for so long.

    Amazing how puny and contrary we can be.



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