Can you please explain why Mercy is the greatest attribute of God?

Can you please explain to me why Mercy is the greatest attribute of God as said in the Divine Mercy revelations by St. Faustina?

I just thought it should be Love which is the greatest attribute of God.

… not half as well as this article can: :slight_smile:

Bishop Rene Gracida just came out recently and said that the central attribute of God is not mercy, but love. It is love that makes the trinity what it is. The father loves the son, the son loves the father, and the Holy spirit is the gaze between the father and son and is loved as well. The father cannot have mercy on the son, the son cannot have mercy on the Holy spirit, because the concept of mercy presupposes sin.

I suppose I would question the difference between “central attribute” and “greatest attribute.” Perhaps the central attribute is the thing that underpins everything else, out of which all else flows; and therefore His mercy flows out of His love, and becomes the greatest attribute?

Certainly from a decidedly 18th Century perspective, but describes the deserved punishment and God’s Mercy in not allowing instant justice:

God has put Himself under no obligation, has made no promise, to keep any unbelieving man out of hell for one second. God certainly has made no promises either of eternal life, or of any deliverance or preservation from eternal death, but only what are contained in the covenant of grace, the promises that are given in Christ, in whom all the promises are yes and amen…

Therefore natural men are held in the hand of God over the pit of hell; they have deserved the fiery pit, and are already sentenced to it; and God is dreadfully provoked, His anger is as great towards them as to those that are actually suffering the executions of the fierceness of His wrath in hell, and they have done nothing in the least to appease or abate that anger, neither is God in the least bound by any promise to hold them up one moment: the devil is waiting for them, hell is gaping for them, the flames gather and flash about them, and are eager to grab hold of them, and swallow them up; the fire pent up in their own hearts is struggling to break out; and they have no interest in any Mediator, there are no means within reach that can be any security to them. In short, they have no refuge, nothing to take hold of; all that preserves them every moment is the mere arbitrary will, and uncovenanted, unobliged patience, of an incensed God. ~Courtesy Jonathan Edwards c.1741

Poor old Jon, like most puritans, build a different God from Jesus of the New Testament. These men were intent on scaring their congregations into Faith, without seemingly realising that they have distorted the Christian message of Love, Mercy and Justice found in a Father, rather than the wrathful God of the Old Testament. We treat our pets better than Jon’s God treats His creation.

Point taken; but have you heard a sermon recently which you think will still be preached 300 years from now?

While Edwards is on one end of the pendulum swing, I would submit we are currently at the other end.

Thanks for commenting.

Could you provide a direct quote and citation from the book, please?

Attributes in God is a human construct. It is a perfectly legitimate construct, since we can’t comprehend the divine nature in its essence; thus God uses it to communicate with us simple creatures. In reality, however, God doesn’t have different “qualities” by participation in a higher good, as man does. God *is *the higher good, which encompasses all of those attributes. (We call this divine simplicity.) In other words, God’s mercy *is *his love *is *his justice, etc. So in one sense, saying one attribute is “greater” than another is meaningless–though it could be meaningful in other senses (and must be, if our Lord said so).

So what is meant by “greatest”? If we mean that which is most fundamental, I’d say that (at least from a human point of view) justice necessarily underlies mercy. But if we mean the attribute which brings God the most glory, or that which most reveals his character, or which converts the most sinners, perhaps mercy. Perhaps there are other meanings we could assign to “greatest”. Which one do you think was intended in the private revelation you allude to?

If you believe we are inherently sinful, then we are all in need of God’s mercy. No one can earn their salvation. God extends his mercy to invite all to Heaven.

If it was revealed to St. Faustina, it does not make it true. I agree I think it is Love which is the greatest.

This is a deep theological issue, but I agree with Bp Gracida that love is the greatest attribute of God

He says this is the Casperite heresy, that mercy is the greatest attribute of God, according to Gracida.

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