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60 Mercy Quotes To Help You Forgive

These mercy quotes illustrate what mercy looks like from God’s perspective.

If you are a Karate Kid or Cobra Kai fan, then you undoubtedly heard their slogan, “no mercy.” John Kreese adopted this premise and taught his students that showing mercy would make them weak.

Does showing mercy make you weak, or is it a show of true strength? What does having mercy even mean?

Mercy is usually brought up in a religious context, used to explain God’s ability to forgive instead of punishing for our misdeeds. Mercy means you show compassion and forgiveness, even when you can decide their fate.

Despite whatever horrible thing that person might have done to you, you move past your own pain and judgments and show forgiveness. It is one of the hardest things to do for another human being. Mercy and justice often go hand in hand, as you will see in these mercy quotes.

Don’t forget to also check out these forgiveness quotes on life, love, and friendship.

God’s Mercy quotes to inspire you

1. “God’s mercy is fresh and new every morning.” ― Joyce Meyer

2. “God’s mercy and grace give me hope – for myself, and for our world.” ― Billy Graham

3. “The first fresh hour of every morning should be dedicated to the Lord, whose mercy gladdens it with golden light.” ― Charles Spurgeon

4. “The wonderful news is that our Lord is a God of mercy, and He responds to repentance.” ― Billy Graham

5. “Every act, every deed of justice and mercy and benevolence, makes heavenly music in Heaven.” ― Ellen G. White

6. “A dark cloud is no sign that the sun has lost his light, and dark black convictions are no arguments that God has laid aside His mercy.” ― Charles Spurgeon

7. “Where mercy, love, and pity dwell, there God is dwelling too.” ― William Blake

8. “Computers are like Old Testament gods; lots of rules and no mercy.” ― Joseph Campbell

9. “Mercy is what moves us toward God, while justice makes us tremble in his sight.” ― Pope Benedict XVI

10. “We hand folks over to God’s mercy and show none ourselves.” ― George Eliot

Justice and Mercy quotes

11. “All the great things are simple, and many can be expressed in a single word: freedom, justice, honor, duty, mercy, hope.” Winston Churchill

12. “I have always found that mercy bears richer fruits than strict justice.” Abraham Lincoln

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13. “Nothing can make injustice just but mercy.” ― Robert Frost

14. “Think carefully before asking for justice. Mercy might be safer.” ― Mason Cooley

15. “Too much mercy… often resulted in further crimes which were fatal to innocent victims who need not have been victims if justice had been put first and mercy second.” ― Agatha Christie

16. “Always seek justice, but love only mercy. To love justice and hate mercy is but a doorway to more injustice.” ― Criss Jami

17. “The essence of justice is mercy.” ― Edwin Hubbell Chapin

18. “A little bit of mercy makes the world less cold and more just.” ― Pope Francis

19. “This hour we are stretching forth our hands with the desire to teach the world the true principles of mercy and justice.” ― Marcus Garvey

20. “The idea of determinism combined with complete human responsibility struck me as very hard to reconcile with an idea of justice, let alone mercy.” ― Ken MacLeod

21. “When having my portrait painted, I don’t want justice, I want mercy.” ― Billy Hughes

Mercy quotes that explain what it is

22. “Mercy is stronger than your sword.” ― P. C. Cast

23. “Sweet mercy is nobility’s true badge.” William Shakespeare

24. “The greatest firmness is the greatest mercy.”  Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

25. “Mercy is a sweet gracious working in love, mingled with plenteous pity: for mercy worketh in keeping us, and mercy worketh turning to us all things to good.” ― Julian of Norwich

26. “Mercy will get you killed, but sometimes it’s all that makes us human.” ― Laurell K. Hamilton

27. “Mercy listens — really listens, with interest and concern — then smiles, and reaches out her hand.” ― J. M. DeMatteis

Short but powerful mercy quotes

28. “I never ask for mercy and seek no one’s sympathy.” ― Conrad Black

29. “Mercy should make us ashamed, wrath afraid to sin.”  William Gurnall

30. “Cowards are cruel, but the brave love mercy and delight to save.” ― John Gay

31. “A man gazing on the stars is proverbially at the mercy of the puddles in the road.” ― Alexander Smith

32. “The truth doesn’t have to do with cruelty, the truth has to do with mercy.”  Ken Kesey

33. “I’m so grateful for just the inherent mercy of life.” ― Lizz Wright

34. “Human judges can show mercy. But against the laws of nature, there is no appeal.” ― Arthur C. Clarke

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35. “We shall show mercy, but we shall not ask for it.” ― Winston Churchill

36. “When a man assumes leadership, he forfeits the right to mercy.” ― Gennaro Angiulo

37. “If the end of one mercy were not the beginning of another, we were undone.” ― Philip Henry

38. “Where mercy is shown, mercy is given.” ― Duane Dog Chapman

39. “Mercy often inflicts death.” Seneca

40. “The depths of misery are never below the depths of mercy.” ― Bishop Von Ketteler

41. “The more merciful acts thou dost, the more mercy thou wilt receive.” ― William Penn

Love and Mercy quotes for when it is difficult to show some

42. “There are three things in the world that deserve no mercy, hypocrisy, fraud, and tyranny.” ― Frederick William Robertson

43. “Teach me to feel another’s woe, to hide the fault I see, that mercy I to others show, that mercy show to me.”  Alexander Pope

44. “Love has its place, as does hate. Peace has its place, as does war. Mercy has its place, as do cruelty and revenge.”  Meir Kahane

45. “There is no austerity equal to a balanced mind, and there is no happiness equal to contentment; there is no disease like covetousness and no virtue like mercy.”  Chanakya

46. “We need to show mercy. I mean, because as much mercy as you show people, that’s the mercy you’re going to be receiving.”  Joel Osteen

47. “I suspect that even today, with all the progress we have made in liberal thought, the quality of true tolerance is as rare as the quality of mercy.”  Frank Knox

48. “Mercy and forgiveness must be free and unmerited to the wrongdoer. If the wrongdoer has to do something to merit it, then it isn’t mercy.”  Timothy Keller

49. “Today we are afraid of simple words like goodness and mercy and kindness. We don’t believe in the good old words because we don’t believe in good old values anymore. And that’s why the world is sick.”  Lin Yutang

50. “It strikes me there is something greater than judgment. I think it is called mercy.” ― Sebastian Barry

Mercy quotes that are full of wisdom

51. “I don’t want to be at the mercy of my emotions. I want to use them, to enjoy them, and to dominate them.” ― Oscar Wilde

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52. “For children are innocent and love justice, while most of us are wicked and naturally prefer mercy.” ― G.K. Chesterton

53. “She knows herself to be at the mercy of events, and she knows by now that events have no mercy.” ― Margaret Atwood

54. “What can a soldier do when mercy is treason, and he is alone in it?” ― Laini Taylor

55. “Mercy is most empowering, liberating, and transformative when it is directed at the undeserving. The people who haven’t earned it, who haven’t even sought it, are the most meaningful recipients of our compassion.” ― Bryan Stevenson

56. “Mercy is the stuff you give to people that don’t deserve it.” ― Joyce Meyer

57. “But I want to be better than the lessons they taught me. I want my love to be greater that my hate, my mercy to be stronger than my vengeance.” ― Amy Engel

58. “Mercy without justice is the mother of dissolution; justice without mercy is cruelty.” ― Thomas Aquinas

59. “Lightning has no mercy.” ― Victoria Aveyard

60. “Even the smallest tender mercy can bring peace when recognized and appreciated.” ― Richelle E. Goodrich

What did you learn from these mercy quotes and sayings?

There is a big difference between the words mercy and grace, even though they are often used interchangeably. Grace refers to the kindness that is freely given and not deserved. Mercy differs in the sense that the person showing mercy can harm someone else with their decision and chooses not to.

I’ve often heard stories where parents of a child killed by a drunk driver advocate for a lesser sentence. This person willfully made decisions that resulted in the loss of the most precious part of their lives. Yet, they give victim impact statements pleading with the judge to show mercy. I have often wondered where they find the strength when so many others seek vengeance for far less.

At its core, mercy is about forgiveness, and even though it is not always easy to show, it makes people feel better. There is a reason they say anger poisons the person who holds onto it.

What’s your biggest takeaway from these mercy quotes and sayings? When was the last time you showed someone mercy? How did that make you feel? Let us know in the comment section below.

Danielle Dahl, Lead Contributor
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