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Who is God? God is Patient

February 23, 2015

Grace to you! This week we will look at God’s patience. It is one of His characteristics or attributes. God’s patience is often only partially understood. The Lord reveals this facet of Himself to Moses on Mt. Sinai: “6 The LORD passed before him and proclaimed, “The LORD, the LORD, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.” (Exodus 34:6) God describes Himself as slow to anger to a stubborn and rebellious Israel. His patience leads Him to endure with sinners who habitually disobey Him and reject His grace.

His patience also led Him to not destroy the world immediately when sin entered it by the sin of our first parents in the garden of Eden. It was God’s patience the moved the Lord to send forth His Son born of a woman under the law “at the right time.” (Galatians 4:4). It take great patience on God’s part not to immediately devour the world in judgment in light of His holiness with all the sin that man has done since the Fall. God patiently waited to send His Son in the world so that sinners may have the opportunity to put their trust in the Lord Jesus and His death on the cross as punishment for their sins. If it were not for God’s patience, then all humanity would forever be lost. We need to understand that God’s patience is not slow in carrying out His will. It’s His very patience towards you that allows you time to turn from your sins and to Christ so that you will not perish in your own sins. (2 Peter 3:9)

But God’s patience also has strong warning that comes with it. Many assume that because God has not already called them to account or brought immediate punishment for their sins that God is not going to punish them for their sins at all. This can be an eternally damning mistake. What’s more spooky is that those who resist the grace and mercy of God offered to them in Jesus may find that God will use His long term patience to allow them to build up more sin so that their judgment will be even greater! (Romans 9:22,23) God’s patience will either result in a person seeing God’s goodness towards them as a sinner which then leads them to turn from their sin to Christ as their Savior and Lord. Or, God’s patience will be abused by others resulting in them having more sin to answer for on judgment day.

How will you respond to God’s patience? Will you use it as a motive to turn to Christ now before it’s too late? Or will you continue your rebellion against God knowing that you are adding sin upon sin to your account resulting in greater judgment for you? May God’s patience lead you to everlasting life in Jesus!

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