Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Mercy

"Nothing humbles and breaks the heart of a sinner like mercy and love. Souls that converse much with sin and wrath, may be much terrified; but souls that converse much with grace and mercy, will be much; humbled." - Thomas Brooks

"Among the attributes of God, although they are all equal, mercy shines with even more brilliancy than justice." - Miguel de Cervantes, fully Miguel de Cervantes Saaversa

"When in doubt, lean to the side of mercy." - Miguel de Cervantes, fully Miguel de Cervantes Saaversa

"Write your name in kindness, love, and mercy on the hearts of thousands you come in contact with year by year, and you will never be forgotten. Your name and your good deeds will shine as the stars of heaven." - Allan Chalmers, fully Allan Knight Chalmers

"Live for something. Do good, and leave behind you a monument of virtue that the storm of time can never destroy. Write you name, in kindness, love, and mercy, on the hearts of thousands you come in contact with year by year; you will never be forgotten. No, your name, your deeds, will be as legible on the hearts you leave behind as the stars on the brow of evening. Good deeds will shine as the stars of heaven." - Thomas Chalmers

"The essence of justice is mercy. Making a child suffer for wrong-doing is merciful to the child. There is no mercy in letting a child have its own will, plunging headlong to destruction wit the bits in its mouth. There is no mercy to society nor to the criminal if the wrong is not repressed and the right vindicated. We injure the culprit who comes up to take his proper doom at the bar of justice, if we do not make him feel that he has done a wrong thing. We may deliver his body from the prison, but not at the expense of justice nor to his own injury." - Edwin Hubbell Chapin

"Let your words be few and digested, it is a shame for the tongue to cry the heart mercy, much more to cast itself upon the uncertain pardon of others’ ears." - Robert Hall

"Our whole life should speak forth our thankfulness; every condition and place we are in should be a witness to our thankfulness. This will make the times and places we live in better for us. When we ourselves are monuments of God’s mercy, it is fit we should be patterns of His praises, and leave monuments to others. We should think it given to us to do something better than to live in. We live not to live: our life is not the end of itself, but the praise of the giver." - Richard Sibbes

"If only truth and justice were the rule, there would be no need for mercy." -

"Hate shuts her soul when dove-eyed mercy pleads." - Charles Sprague

"Six hundred and thirteen commandments were given to Moses. King David came and reduced them to eleven (Psalms XV). The prophet Isaiah further reduced them to six (Isaiah XXXIII) Micah (VI, 8) reduced them to three: "He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and walk humbly with thy God." - Babylonian Talmud

"Marriage should combat without respite or mercy that monster which devours everything - habit." - Honoré de Balzac

"There is a time in the lives of most of us when, despondent of all joy in an earthly future, and tortured by conflicts between inclination and duty, we transfer all the passion and fervor of our troubled souls to enthusiastic yearnings for the divine love, looking to its mercy, and taking thence the only hopes that can cheer - the only strength that can sustain us." - Edward Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton, fully Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, Lord Lytton

"All the great things are simple, and many can be expressed in a single word: freedom; justice; honor; duty; mercy; hope." -

"The most valuable things in life are not measured in monetary terms. The really important things are not houses and lands, stocks and bonds, automobiles and real state, but friendships, trust, confidence, empathy, mercy, love and faith." - Russell Victor DeLong, possibly Bertrand Russell V. Delong

"No one has the capacity to judge God. We are drops in that limitless ocean of mercy." -

"It is highly convenient to believe in the infinite mercy of God when you feel the need of mercy, but remember also His infinite justice." - Benjamin R. Haydon

"A man gazing at the stars is proverbially at the mercy of the puddles in the road." - Alexander Smith

"God’s wisdom is infinite; it transcends all our powers of expression. So of his mercy and his benevolence. Infinite existence is everlasting existence. When we speak of God as the Infinite Existence, we mean that allhis attribute are infinite." -

"Mercy is not ordinarily held to consist in pronouncing judgment on another man’s deserts, but in relieving his necessities; in giving aid to the poor, not in inquiring how good they are." - Ambrose, aka Saint Ambrose, fully Aurelius Ambrosius NULL

"Every moral act of love, of mercy, and of scarifice brings to pass the end of the world where hatred, cruelty, and selfishness reign supreme." - Nikolai Berdyaev, fully Nikolai Alexandrovich Berdyaev, also spelled Nichlas Berdiaev

"Inaction in a deed of mercy becomes an action in a deadly sin." - Book of Golden Precepts, aka The Book of Golden Precepts NULL

"When we live at each other’s mercy, we had better learn to be merciful." - William Sloane Coffin, Jr.

"The history of mankind is crowded with evidences proving that physical coercion is not adapted to moral regeneration; that the sinful dispositions of men can be subdued only by love; that evil can be exterminated from the earth only by goodness… that there is great security in being gentle, harmless, long-suffering, and abundant in mercy; that it is only the meek who shall inherit the earth, for the violent, who resort to the sword, are destined to perish with the sword." - William Lloyd Garrison

"Things which matter most must never be at the mercy of things which matter least." - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

"Beyond all mystery is the mercy of God." - Abraham Joshua Heschel

"By negligence and silence we have all become accessory before the God of mercy to the injustice committed against the Negroes by men of our nation." - Abraham Joshua Heschel

"Confession heals, confession justifies, confession grants pardon of sin. All hope consists in confession. In confession there is a chance for mercy. Believe it firmly. Do not doubt, do not hesitate, never despair of the mercy of God. Hope and have confidence in confession." - Isidore of Seville, fully Saint Isidore of Seville NULL

"The saint… wants himself to be simply a window through which God’s mercy shines on the world. And for this he strives to be holy… in order that the goodness of God may never be obscured by any selfish act of his." - Thomas Merton

"Loving kindness, sympathetic joy, compassion, mercy: These are the unmistakable footprints of our spiritual life." - Wayne Muller

"Where there is an ongoing relationship of caring. Where there is a sense of humor. Where there is a sense of mutual mercy. Where there is a sense that God has given sex to you… there is nothing livelier. But when it is merchandised as a commodity for instant gratification, there is nothing deadlier than sex." - William Swing, fully William Edwin Swing

"The Master responds to falsehood and truth, bad news and good news, inexactly the same way: “Is that so?” He allows the form of the moment, good or bad, to be as it is and so does not become a participant in human drama. To him there is only this moment, and this moment is as it is. Events are not personalized. He is nobody’s victim. He is so completely at one with what happens that what happens has no power over him anymore. Only if you resist what happens are you at the mercy of what happens, and the world will determine your happiness and unhappiness." - Eckhart Tolle, born Ulrich Leonard Tolle

"We live by Faith; but Faith is not the slave of text and legend. Reason’s voice and God’s, Nature’s and Duty’s, never are at odds. What asks our Father of His children, save justice and mercy and humility, a reasonable service of good deeds, pure living, tenderness to human needs, reverence and trust, and prayer for light to see the Master’s footprints in our daily ways? No knotted scourge nor sacrificial knife, but the calm beauty of an ordered life whose very breathing is unworded praise! A life that stands as all true lives have stood firm-rooted in the faith that God is good." - John Greenleaf Whittier

"All the great things are simple, and many can be expressed in a single word: freedom, justice, honor, duty, mercy, hope." - Winston Churchill, fully Sir Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill

"What is called sympathy, kindness, mercy, goodness, pity, compassion, gentleness, humanity, appreciation, gratefulness, and service - in reality, it is love." - Inayat Khan, aka Hazrat Inayat Khan, fully Pir-O-Murshid Hazrat Inayat Khan

"Mankind's true moral test, its fundamental test (which lies deeply buried from view) consists of its attitudes towards those who are at its mercy." - Milan Kundera

"Mercy is seasonable in the time of affliction as clouds of rain in the time of drought." - Ben Sira

"Cruel men are the greatest lovers of mercy, avaricious men of generosity, and proud men of humility; that is to say, in others, not in themselves." - Charles Caleb Colton

"There is no cruelty so inexorable and unrelenting as that which proceeds from a bigoted and presumptuous supposition of doing service to God. The victim of the fanatical persecutor will find that the stronger the motives he can urge for mercy are, the weaker will be his chance for obtaining it, for the merit of his destruction will be supposed to rise in value in proportion as it is effected at the expense of every feeling both of justice and of humanity." - Charles Caleb Colton

"Have charity; have patience; have mercy. Never bring a human being, however silly, ignorant, or weak - above all, any little child - to shame and confusion of face. Never by petulance, by suspicion, by ridicule, even by selfish and silly haste - never, above all, by indulging in the devilish pleasure of a sneer - crush what is finest and rouse up what is coarsest in the heart of any fellow-creature." -

"The essential and unbounded mercy of my Creator is the foundation of my hope, and a broader and surer the universe cannot give me." - Chuang Tzu, also spelled Chuang-tsze, Chuang Chou, Zhuangzi, Zhuang Tze, Zhuang Zhou, Chuang Tsu, Chouang-Dsi, Chuang Tse, or Chuangtze

"Nothing is ever lost by courtesy. It is the cheapest of pleasures, costs nothing, and conveys much. It pleases him who gives and receives and thus, like mercy, is twice blessed." - Erastus Wiman

"In causes of life and death, judges ought (as far as the law permiteth) in justice to remember mercy; and to cast a severe eye upon the example, but a merciful eye upon the person." - Francis Bacon

"We hand folks over to God's mercy, and show none ourselves." -

"Mercy more becomes a magistrate than the vindictive wrath which men call justice." - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

"The greatest firmness is the greatest mercy." - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

"The laws of nature are just, but terrible. There is no weak mercy in them. Cause and consequence are inseparable and inevitable. The elements have no forbearance. The fire burns, the water drowns, the air consumes, the earth buries. And perhaps it would be well for our race if the punishment of crimes against the laws of man were as inevitable as the punishment of crimes against the laws of nature, were man as unerring in his judgments as nature." - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow