A Prayer for Mercy

A mother once approached Napoleon seeking a pardon for her son. The emperor replied that the young man had committed a certain offense twice and justice demanded death. “But I don’t? ask ... More


Psalm 122 begins with a group of excited pilgrims, singing as they make their ascent to the “City of God.” The thrones for judgment possibly refer to the courts of justice by the town gate (v. 5; See also Ruth 4:1-2, II Sam. 19:8, and Neh. 8:1). The psalmist prayed an intercessory prayer on behalf of his brothers and friends in Jerusalem (vv. 6-9). He prays for their peace and prosperity. Peace is much more than the absent of conflict. It suggests completeness, health, justice, prosperity, and protection. The world can’t provide this kind of peace. Real peace comes from faith in God because He alone manifests all the characteristics of peace.

In Psalm 123, the writer lifts his eyes to God, waiting and watching for Him to send His mercy (v. 1). As he waits, he realizes that the evil and the proud offers no help (vv. 3-4). We desire mercy from God; we hope he will show us mercy, and we will continue waiting on him till it comes. The eyes of a servant are to his master’s directing hand, expecting that he will meet his need through his supplying hand (v. 2). Servants look to their master or their mistress for their needs to be met in due season. And to God we must look for daily bread, for His grace is sufficient; from him we must receive it thankfully.

Where can we look for help but to our Master? And, further, to his protecting hand. If the servant is wronged and injured in his work, who should make things right, but his master? And to his correcting hand. Where should sinners turn but to him that smote them? They humble themselves under God’s mighty hand. And lastly, to his rewarding hand. Hypocrites look to the world’s hand, thence they have their reward; but true Christians look to God as their Master and their Rewarder. God’s people find little mercy with men; but with the Lord there is mercy. Scorning and contempt have been, are, and are likely to be, the lot of God’s people in this world (v.4). Let us not faint under trials, but look unto Jesus, and by faith and prayer cast ourselves upon the mercy of God.


I am so thankful for God’s mercy. It is only by His mercy and by His grace that I am saved. If I got what I deserved it would be eternal separation from God, in Hell for ever.

Psalms 122:1-4 (English Standard Version)

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