Proverbs 16:6 Dissected & Defined
By mercy and truth iniquity (self-righteousness) is purged: and by the fear of the LORD (respect for what God can do) men depart from evil.
This verse is a key verse to the ministry of RU. It is the verse on which we base all the codes of conduct for our Men and Women’s School of Discipleship. It teaches the value of a proper balance of distribution.
The distribution consists of the commodities of mercy and truth, coupled with the fear of the Lord. The Bible uses the words “mercy and truth” in that order seventeen times. It never switches the order to truth before mercy.
I believe that in order to transform a person from self-righteousness (doing good in your own power rather than the power of God) that you must apply mercy to their mistakes, BUT you must always follow that mercy with the Truth, for only the Truth makes Free!
By Mercy AND Truth
However, there are many who give harsh truth and they never administer mercy. There are others who are too kind; giving mercy, but not speaking Truth. No, the proper balance in a violation is to not give them what they deserve (mercy) and instead give them the Truth (explanations of what is right). If we do this, then it should produce gratitude. That gratitude to the Lord is known as fear or respect. That should lead people to depart from evil and its ways. If it does not, then God will eventually give judgment.
This formula has worked for thousands of unrighteous addicts and self-righteous Christians. Yet, I have never seen a violator given truth without any mercy who every seemed able to depart from his evil ways.