Exodus 34:6 The Lord (is) merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness …
I Am Slow to Anger
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Anyone who’s been a parent, knows what it is to fly off the handle, as it were. We try not to, but every now and then our kids drive us nuts. Completely bonkers. Yep, you parents know exactly what I’m talking about.
And for those of us who are perfectionists, and I used to be one, it’s even worse. How can they do that? How can they be so disrespectful? If I’ve told them once, I’ve told them a thousand times, when the toilet paper runs out, replace it! Don’t wait for someone else to do it for you. How can you be so lazy?! How can you be so disrespectful?!
And the more often they do that same thing, the angrier you get.
But put the shoe on the other foot, and none of us like to be on the receiving end of that sort of anger. Sure, sometimes we know it’s our fault, we know we deserve it, but it’s still not very pleasant. Other times, we’re around someone who’s touchy, someone who constantly flies off the handle. It’s not nice is it?
So with all these people with short fuses in our lives, with all this spontaneous anger that we can be confronted with, it’s easy to start imagining that God’s like that – that He goes off His rocker, every time we put one foot wrong.
I mean imagine, if He is like that, you and I would have a serious problem. He is so powerful. Look at the heavens, the trillions of stars, the incredible power of God. It’s beyond comprehension. Imagine if, when you put a foot wrong, for the hundredth time, the same thing, imagine if God unleashed even a fraction of that power in a fit of rage against you.
Yeah, we would have a serious problem. And after all, He has every right, because He is perfect in every way. And you and I, well, let’s face it, we’re anything but.
So … is God easily provoked to anger and fits of rage by our failures? That’s the question.
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)
Don’t you love that – and this isn’t the only time that you’ll hear those words. They appear over and over again throughout the Bible.
Listen to them again, just in case you get to imagining that God is some grumpy old man, with a big stick:
God is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.
That’s who God is.
That’s God’s Word. Fresh … for you … today.