Justice meets Mercy

When justice meets mercy who wins? In this world it depends. In the United States, Presidents and Governors can issue a pardon and release a guilty prisoner. This is an exception though. In most governments, for justice to be just it should be blind. In theory this is good but it often limits society’s ability to exercise mercy.

In God’s kingdom we are told that mercy triumphs…

In the parable of the Unjust Steward, mercy appears to triumph over justice. In an odd way, this difficult parable illustrates our problem with grace. It is undeserved. We sometimes bristle at undeserved mercy. In the parable Jesus commends mercy and abandons justice. In essence, this is the good news of the Gospel. In James we are commanded to be merciful or else face judgment ourselves. Mercy triumphs!

Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom, because judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful.Mercy triumphs over judgment.  James 2:12,13 NIV

Spoiler Alert:  In the book written by Victor Hugo and in the movie ‘Les Miserables’ the concept of justice triumphing over mercy is illustrated wonderfully.  Jean Valjean is relentlessly pursued by an officer of the law Javert, for having stolen a loaf of bread. A priest has mercy on him in spite of Valjean’s thievery of his candlesticks. It is truly a beautiful story and the 1998 and 2012 movies both do a good job bringing the book to life. If you have never watched, please do. If you ambitious read the book.   Les Misérables (English language) is free and worth the read.  My daughter bought me the book years ago, knowing I was a Les Mis fan. I read about half the book or so, but got bogged down in the revolution.  I still enjoyed what I did read greatly

In the book ‘Modern Parables for Financial Freedom’ the short story of The Pair of Bills borrows from Les Miserables with its characters, Bill Balgon ( Valjean ) and Agent Gavert (Javert). The story also illustrates some general truths about Biblical parables. It’s a unique parable about parables.  Give it a read.

A challenge:  In your own realm, let mercy triumph over justice. You’ll be surprised the exhilaration it brings!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *