Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
Question: What is “charity,” and will it help us be merciful?
Answer: Charity is love expressed in kindness and good-will toward others. Being charitable with the world-at-large will help us when we suddenly need to be merciful to someone in
particular. In the Bible, Paul writes one of the most beautiful passages, in which he shines a
light on charity, shows us what it is, and how it is expressed in our daily lives:
“Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.” (I Corinthians 13)
Peter agrees with the importance of charity. He writes:
“And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins. Use hospitality one to another without grudging.” (I Peter 4)
There is a lot to think about in those passages above; so much we can use to practice charity. Love, expressed in human charity, is too important to ignore. We must work to understand
how to be charitable in daily life. Then, we will find it easier to be merciful when faced with the need to forgive, or the need to sacrifice for another.
Practice: Use a modern Bible translation, if you have one, to help you understand better the meaning of Paul’s words. How can you use his ideas?
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(Excerpted from “First Lessons in Christian Science, Volume Two: The Beatitudes”
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