Attributes of the Gift of Mercy

_________________ Attributes of the Gift of Mercy



Greek word – Eleeo (el-eh-eh'-o) -- to have mercy on
to help one afflicted or seeking aid
to help the afflicted, to bring help to the wretched
to experience mercy
kindness or good will towards the miserable and the afflicted, joined with a desire to help them
of men towards men: to exercise the virtue of mercy, show one's self merciful
of God towards men: in general providence; the mercy and clemency of God in providing and offering to men salvation by Christ
the mercy of Christ, whereby at his return to judgment he will bless true Christians with eternal life
The Biblical illustration for the gift of Mercy is John and the Good Samaritan.


Mercy/Compassion is neither a “feminine” or “masculine” gift. It is a character trait of God as are all the Motivational Spiritual Gifts.


More people have the gift of Mercy than any other gift. It balances all the other gifts as in the case of balancing strengths and weaknesses. To reflect upon Paul’s assertion, 1 Corinthians 13 is a description of godly Mercy.




1Corinthians 13:1 If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but I do not have love, I have become as sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. 2 And if I have prophecies, and know all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith so as to move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 And if I give out all my goods,
and if I deliver my body that I be burned, but I do not have love, I am not profited anything. 4 Love has patience, is kind; love is not envious; love is not vain, is not puffed up; 5 does not behave indecently, does not pursue its own things, is not easily provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices in the truth. 7 Love quietly covers all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 8 Love never fails. But if there are prophecies, they will be caused to cease; if tongues, they shall cease; if knowledge, it will be caused to cease. 9 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part; 10 but when the perfect thing comes, then that which is in part will be caused to cease. 11 When I was an infant, I spoke as an infant, I thought as an infant, I reasoned as an infant. But when I became a man, I caused to cease the things of the infant. 12 For now we see through a mirror in dimness, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I will fully know even as I also was fully known. 13 And now faith, hope, and love, these three things remain; but the greatest of these is love.

The greatest of these is Love. In these last days, God says that the love of man for mankind will grow cold. That is a most terrifying thought. We just think it's bad now. My dad used to have a morbid joke about the news: Let's get today's body count. That's cold.

  • PERCEPTION A cowboy rode into town and stopped at the saloon for a drink (root beer, of course!). Unfortunately, the locals always had a habit of picking on those of a British background, which he was. When he finished, he found his horse had been stolen. He came back into the bar, handily flipped his gun into the air, caught it above his head without even looking and fired a shot into the ceiling. "WHICH ONE OF YOU SIDEWINDERS STOLE MY HOSS?" he yelled with surprising forcefulness.

    No one answered. "ALRIGHT, I'M GONNA HAVE ME ANOTHA SODA, AND IF MY HOSS AIN'T BACK OUTSIDE BY THE TIME I FINISH, I'M GONNA DO WHAT I DUN IN TEXAS! AND IIIIIIIIIIII DON'T LIKE TO HAVE TO DO WHAT I DUUUUUN IN TEXAS!"

    Some of the locals shifted restlessly while he had another root beer, walked outside, and his horse was back! He saddled up and started to ride out of town. The bartender wandered out of the bar and asked, "Say partner, what happened in Texas?"

    The cowboy turned back and said, "I had to walk home..."


Persons with the gift of Compassion have the ability to feel atmosphere of joy or distress in a group of people. Most of the people with this gift do not recognize it as an attribute of the gift and the ability will distress them.

They have a tendency to be attracted to people having emotional or physical distress. And the folks experiencing distress will develop a physical attraction to the Compassion person of the opposite sex because they misinterpret the attention. They have an ability to project themselves into another person’s problems. Their desire to remove hurts and bring healing generally prevents them from looking for benefits in the pain felt by the objects of their attention.

They have a greater concern for mental distress than physical distress because of their knowledge that inner feelings are of utmost importance. They will always reach out with love and caring to soothe and heal.

Compassion people are sensitive to words and actions so as not to hurt anyone and when hearing anything critical, they react to it. Their tendency to react harshly when intimate friends are rejected or hurt makes them a champion in causes. Their sense of loyalty causes them to feel another’s pain and this trait keeps the rest of us in touch with feelings as none of the other gifts can do.

They sense genuine love and have a greater vulnerability to a sense of lack of love. They are more easily hurt and more frequently hurt. Compassion people need to feel that “protective care” from their mate and will back off if hurt. They understand commitment and will give it unconditionally. They have a need for deep friendships with deep commitments and they have a need for genuine awareness of commitment.

They measure acceptance by physical closeness and quality time together. They will be attracted to other compassion people. This is the only gift that will be attracted to itself. All the other gifts seem to pair off with other gifts such as an Administrator with a Perceiver or Teacher…A Giver with an Exhorter etc.

Mercy people do not like confrontations. They will avoid firmness with a person in counseling until they are made to see the benefit to that person. Mercy people must realize they need to temper their gift with wisdom. We must not interfere with God when someone is in the middle of being broken…we might prolong it.

They have a great ability to detect insincerity immediately and will close relationships or reject those displaying insincerity and insensitivity.


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