Lord’s Goodness and Mercy (Nahum 1:7)
Nahum 1:7, The LORD is good, a strong hold in the day of trouble; and he knoweth them that trust in him.
President Calvin Coolidge was awakened one morning in his hotel room to find a burglar going through his pockets. Coolidge spoke up, asking the burglar not to take his watch chain because it contained an engraved charm very precious to him. Coolidge then engaged the thief in quiet conversation and learned he was a college student who had no money to pay his hotel bill or buy a ticket back to campus. Coolidge counted $32 out of his wallet declared it to be a loan, he also advised the young man to leave the way he had come to avoid the Secret Service! Although this young man never earned nor deserved mercy Coolidge showed this young man mercy rather justice. Surprisingly, the loan was paid back.
True Biblical mercy never tolerates sin for one moment, but it shows compassion to the sinner. Mercy helps people overcome sin; it never comforts them in their sin. God declares and demonstrates His goodness to His children. Nahum described the mercy and goodness of God. He is good! He is a refuge for help in the day of trouble. Furthermore, God knows those who trust in Him. He knows His own. The Lord knoweth them that are his (II Timothy 2:19). He has promised to bless those who trust in Him (Psalms 2:12; 34:78; 40:4; 84:12). Those promises remain to this day.
Three Traits which Comfort Christians in Turbulent Times: 1. His Mercy is Pure (The Lord is good)
This verse declares the goodness and mercy of the Lord. Although God’s mercy is something we are not deserving of, we should be very grateful for it. The mercy of the Lord is great and I am glad for its abundance. It is something that I do not deserve, but I am very grateful for. Without the mercy of God I would be without and our life would have no meaning. It is very humbling to think of the great compassion and mercy God shows to his fallen creation. Only the heart of a divine Saviour can love us at the level we receive.
2. His Mercy is Preserving (a strong hold in the day of trouble;) God is a help in trouble, not just in the good days, but also in the days of trouble. We see “in the day of trouble” the Lord will be there for us. Trouble and trials can't be avoided. God wants us to have the right attitude about the troubles that we face, James 1:2, My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;. It does not say if, but when we have trials. Many things and people can help us on good days but when trouble and calamity comes, their help ceases and is not adequate. "God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble." (Psalm 46:1). It is the Lord Himself, His presence, that will shelter and protect the person who places his faith in the Lord. No matter the trouble (whether terrifying trial, seductive temptation, or simple problem) the Lord is good and He cares for those who trust in Him. The Lord will shelter, protect, and deliver the believer into the very presence of God Himself.
3. His Mercy is Personal (he knoweth them that trust in him) Believers will not face the vengeance of God because the Lord knows those who trust Him. The phrase “he knoweth them” emphasizes the personal interest and relationship that we have with God. The word knows suggests a close, personal relationship, a deep, intense, loving relationship. The Lord knows those whose faith and hope are in Him. He knows them because true believers walk with the Lord, fellowshipping, sharing, and talking with Him. They live righteously, obeying His Holy Word and commandments. The Lord and His people have a close bond, a very personal relationship. Therefore, when His people face trouble, whether mild or terrifying, the Lord is a refuge or stronghold for them. What a great encouragement to know that God knows and cares about us as individuals. God personally shows His affection to us.
While speeding one late night, the driver saw the flashing lights of a state trooper in his rearview mirror. As the driver pulled over and as he rolled down the window, he tried to come up with an excuse for being in such a hurry. But as the trooper approached the car, he said nothing. Instead, he shined his flashlight in the driver’s face, then on his exhausted pregnant wife, then on his snoozing 18-month-old in his car seat, then on his three other children, who were also asleep, and lastly on the two dogs in the very back of the car. Returning the beam of light to his face, the trooper spoke and said, "Son, you can't afford a ticket. Slow it down." He returned to his car and drove away. Sometimes mercy triumphs over law. So it is for sinners who call out to Jesus.
Prayer, Father in Heaven, use me as a sanctified vessel, to pour out mercy and love without measure on other people. Father, we live in a world where there are so many hurting people. Help me to stretch out a willing arm of comfort, when I see other people hurting or in pain. May Your Holy Spirit empower me to bless and help all those whom I come in contact. In Jesus name, Amen!
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship.