The Lord is gracious
Slow to Anger
and abounding in steadfast love
During the month of October we are looking at each of these characteristics of God, to see what they reveal about who God is. This week looking at God being Slow to anger/long suffering.
Slow to Anger = patient; long-tempered; slow to express wrath
Mercy emphasises the misery which our sin causes.
Long-suffering emphasises the sin which caused our misery.
In a world of sin, sickness, suffering, violence and injustices we want to see wrong rightened, we want to see justice done and suffering relieved and we actually question, why doesn’t God step in, why does He allow these things, why doesn’t He bring justice?
Well, my friend, He will, oh yes He will and what a terrible day of judgement and punishment that will be. You see it is because He is long-suffering that He is putting off that day. He is suffering long with us, with our sin, our disobedience our calamities and disasters because of His great mercy. He could step in now, but we would be destroyed, so in His mercy He is giving us a chance to come to a place of repentance, a place of Salvation in Christ Jesus.
But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that wth the Lord, one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
The Lord is not slow to fulfill His promises as some count slowness, but is patient towards you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.
You see, God is long-suffering, but there will come an end to that, an end of that leniency . Just as He put up with Sodom & Gomorroh for so long, so did a day of judgement come. As in the days of Noah when the peoples’ wickedness and violence got so bad, so God called an end. Thankfully, in His grace & mercy God has always provided a way out, a way to be saved, whether in the form of an ark, of sacrifice, of following Angels or ultimately through the death of Jesus. There is a way of salvation and He is suffering long, patiently giving people a chance to come and be saved.
This is not where I expected my thoughts on God being slow to anger to take me, I hadn’t really been thinking about there being an “end” to His patience and endurance. However, my thoughts have lead me to this this place and all I can say is that in every instance I looked at in the bible of when God’s patience did run out, He always, always provided a way for the people to be saved. And so too with us and for that I am profoundly grateful.
The Lord IS slow to anger and long suffering, but when He reaches an end of that there is a way of salvation from His wrath and righteous judgement. That way is Jesus. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life and it is through Him we are saved. Jesus is the place where we are hidden from the wrath to come. Let us come and hide ourselves in Him today .