éleos is Greek for “mercy” as it is defined by loyalty to God’s covenant; pity; compassion.
God’s éleos is stunning. While reading Nehemiah this week I was again reminded of my need for a Savior and the lengths He goes to prove His love and mercy to us.
In Nehemiah 9 the people confessed their sin and worshipped the Lord for He alone is God.
In verse 6 the people begin praising and praying, rehearsing all the wonderful things the Lord did from Abram to the present, beautifully recounting the mercy of the Lord.
Then in verse 16 their prayer takes a turn.
“But they and our fathers acted presumptuously and stiffened their neck and did not obey Your commandments. They refused to obey and were not mindful of the wonders that You performed among them,”
Lord, let us be always mindful of Your wonders.
Never let us stray from the enthralling works of Your hands.
“but they stiffened their neck and appointed a leader to return to their slavery in Egypt.” -Nehemiah 9:16
Whoa. They wanted to return to slavery, to their chains. To the exhausting labor and endless yelling by evil taskmasters.
How often do I, do we, go back to our chains? Seeking comfort in the lies and endless labors of Satan and our old life?
May God’s wonders captivate and capture our hearts so much that the old life would lose all appeal and our allegiance would remain with the One who broke our chains, not the one who bound us in them.
“But You are a God ready to forgive, gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, and did not forsake them.” -Nehemiah 9:17
The mercy of God never ceases (enough said) to blow me away at its drenching, overwhelming enormity. And it doesn’t stop at verse 17. The chapter goes on to recount how God responded in unfathomable mercy to the Israelites even after their sins, disobedience, defiance and rebellion.
Our God is beautiful and rich in éleos. How can we not serve and wholly follow this great King, the real Aslan, who loves us so much He takes pity on us, extending compassion and steadfast love to us even after we rebel?
I hope you experience an outpouring of the love and mercy of God today as you seek to serve Him in all you do.