Think of Jesus, His character and actions, as related to mercy and compassion. Jesus was full of mercy and compassion when He forgave the adulterous woman, but He told her to go and sin no more. Jesus was full of mercy and compassion for the tax collector who had stolen money; but Jesus so revealed truth to the man so that he gave back more than he had stolen. Jesus had mercy on the rich young ruler by seeing into his heart and telling him the truth, but that man chose not to follow because his heart desired riches more. Jesus had mercy on the sick and healed on the Sabbath, and when the religious elite condemned Him for it, He exposed their hypocrisy with truth.
Jesus had overwhelming mercy when He died that we might live. Jesus is mercy, but He does not let evil “walk all over Him” or around Him. He spoke the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15) so people could grow in righteousness. He stood in the Father’s will. He extended grace and mercy and asked people to follow Him expecting them to pursue righteousness the same way He obeyed His Father….in truth and righteousness.
Even on the cross, He held fast to truth and mercy. He asked forgiveness for those who knew not what they were doing…the ignorant and unrepentant. The Master was forgiving the debt that could not be paid any other way. We should live in mercy, compassion, forgiveness, and truth by following our Master’s example. Remember the parable in Matthew 18: 21-35.