Having absolutely no need, God created this world and man
out of His excessive goodness alone. He gave people life, adorned them with His
divine image and gave them free will so that they could participate in His
beatitude. When they sinned, He did not in His just judgement reject them
completely, but, in His infinite mercy He desired to lead them out of the abyss
of the Fall and return them to eternal life, through His Only-Begotten Son.
With his Creator and Savior as the ideal of perfect love, a man must in turn
forgive and love his own neighbors, because we are all brothers by
In the following four parables, the Lord Jesus
Christ gives us instructions on how we must evince our love for people. These
are the parable about the wicked servant, the good Samaritan, the rich man and
Lazarus, and the unjust steward. The conclusion of these parables is that the
works of mercy may be very different in their visible manifestations. The works
of mercy may include all the good things we may do for others: forgive those
who offend us, help the suffering, comfort the sorrowful, give good advice,
pray for our neighbors and a variety of other things. External indications
alone do not allow us to judge which good works are worth more in Godís eye.
Good works are not counted but given value according to the spiritual content,
the depth of love and the power of will which a man applies to perform them.
The first and most vital, though not the easiest work of mercy, is the
forgiveness of offences. The Lord teaches us to forgive our neighbors in His
parable about the wicked servant.
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