God and I must meet; there is a day appointed for it; and
surely the thoughts thereof would be like death, and worse, were I not
assured that mercy goes before him. Why, then, should I be afraid to meet
with God, since mercy goes before his face? Mercy means no ill—will do no
harm—displays the flag of peace—proclaims the manifesto, that "mercy shall
be built up forever." But how shall I know that mercy goes before his face!
Because truth goes hand in hand with mercy; and the veracity of truth
forbids me to doubt the certainty of mercy.
How must the heart of a guilty rebel rejoice—to find that
pardon is proclaimed by his offended sovereign! Mercy and truth are the best
means of preserving the kings of the earth, and when they exercise it, their
throne is upheld by mercy. But the King of heaven, in every act of his
administration, preserves mercy and truth; and in them establishes his
throne. The King of kings will never go without his royal retinue, his
life-guards—mercy and truth shall form the van—justice and judgment support
his throne—infinity, eternity, and immutability carry his crown—power and
omnipotence bear the robe of royalty—wisdom and righteousness hold the regal
scepter—graciousness, long-suffering, and patience proclaim his sacred
name—and love encircles all the flaming train!
In every circumstance, then, I can be in, I have comfort;
for, in his providence towards me, mercy goes before him; and it works for
my good; yes; even in my afflictions, mercy goes before him, and I am
chastened, that I may not be condemned with the world. Thus mercy is the
precious ointment that, in all things, at all times and in all places—casts
its pleasant scent abroad, and perfumes his conduct towards me.
And whenever, or wherever I meet God; whether in the
dissolving pang, or solemn appearance at his bar, I shall find him a
reconciled Father, and all his affections yearning for the son of his
adoption. Neither the hour of death, therefore, nor the day of judgment,
shall terrify me. "But I will sing of the mercies of the Lord forever; with
my mouth will I make known your faithfulness to all generations. For I have
said, Mercy shall be built up forever; your faithfulness shall you establish
in the very heavens!"