Mercy and Grace?

The first of today’s two questions came from Stevie.  She wrote: “You and I had a conversation recently about the difference between God’s mercy and God’s grace. I’m thinking your readers may find your explanation as enlightening and thought-provoking as I.”

There are lots of theological words that many of us use as if they were interchangeable.  Many of these words are not.  Two words that are often confused are the words “mercy” and “grace”.

So what’s the difference?

There are several ways one could talk about it.  Once resource I found talked about the difference in the following way.  Mercy is when an individual does not receive the consequence – or consequences – one would expect. Grace has to do with a quality or characteristic of God: mainly a kindness that is unexpectedly (and undeservedly) extended by God.

So what about you?  How might you talk about the difference between these concepts?

About Pastor Craig

I'm a 55-year-old who currently lives in Los Angeles, CA but will soon be moving to New Jersey. I'm an ordained clergy person in the United Church of Christ. My passions include spirituality, politics, and sports (Go Houston teams, go!). I use my blog to start conversations rather than merely spout my perspectives and opinions. I hope you'll post a question, comment, or observation for me to respond - so we can get the conversation started!
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2 Responses to Mercy and Grace?

  1. Sharon says:

    On Mercy and Grace. What do you think of explaining them like this? Mercy is not receiving the punishment for my deed(s) and Grace is Christ taking the punishment I deserved.

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