How Well Do I Know and Appreciate God? • Jonah 3:10 When God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he had compassion and did not bring upon them the destruction he had threatened. • God never changes His mind about truth and character. • He always acts consistently with Himself. • The repentance of Nineveh did not cause God to change His mind about truth; it caused Him to change His mind about the consequences of His truth. • It was man who aligned himself with God and not God aligning Himself with man.
Jeremiah 18:7-10 “The instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, to pull down, and to destroy it, “if that nation against whom I have spoken turns from its evil, I will relent of the disaster that I thought to bring upon it. “And the instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it, “if it does evil in My sight so that it does not obey My voice, then I will relent concerning the good with which I said I would benefit it.”
Jonah 4:1 But Jonah was greatly displeased and became angry. • Jonah 4:2He prayed to the Lord, “O Lord, is this not what I said when I was still at home? That is why I was so quick to flee to Tarshish. I knew that you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity.
1) Gracious, • 2) Compassion and Merciful, • 3) Slow to anger, • 4) Abundant in loving-kindness • 5) And One who relents from doing harm.
1. Do I Really Know and Appreciate God’s Grace? • PRINCIPLE: God is a giver, even to those who are out of step with Him. • APPLICATION: Grace is what God does for us freely because of Christ. • It is God’s attitude toward those who violate Him and, therefore, have no claim on Him. God willingly extends His benefits to sinners.
God focuses on grace. He specializes in dispensing grace. • 2 Cor. 9:8 “And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.” • Tim 2:11 “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men …”
Grace is one of God’s names: • Pet 5:10-11 “But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. 11 To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.”
2. Do I Really Know and Appreciate God’s Compassion and Mercy? • PRINCIPLE: God has great capacity for mercy. • APPLICATION: There is no commodity that God has more of than mercy while we often extend little mercy to one another. • God abundantly exercises mercy toward His creatures. • Mercy is what is contained in love. • It is a love towards someone who does not deserve our love.
Ps 103:8 “The Lord is merciful and gracious, Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy.” • Lam 3:22, 23 “It is because of the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, Because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness.” • Rom 12:1 “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.”
2 Corinthians 1:3 “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort …” • Ephesians 2:4 “But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us …” • 1 Peter 1:3 “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead …”
3. Do I really Know and Appreciate God Is Slow to Become Angry? • PRINCIPLE: God is longsuffering with us. • APPLICATION: Here is one of the many characteristics of God that we should imitate—being slow to anger. • The Bible never says that a person should never become angry.
Numbers 14:18 “The Lord is longsuffering and abundant in mercy, forgiving iniquity and transgression; but He by no means clears the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generation.” • Psalm 145:8 “The Lord is gracious and full of compassion, slow to anger and great in mercy”
2Thess. 1:8-10 He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might on the day he comes to be glorified in his holy people and to be marveled at among all those who have believed. This includes you, because you believed our testimony to you.
4. Do I really Know and Appreciate God’s Loving Kindness? • Ps 36:7 “How precious is Your loving-kindness, O God! Therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of Your wings.” • Ps 51:1 “Have mercy upon me, O God, According to Your loving-kindness; According to the multitude of Your tender mercies, Blot out my transgressions.”
Isaiah 63:7 “I will mention the loving kindnesses of the Lord And the praises of the Lord, According to all that the Lord has bestowed on us, And the great goodness toward the house of Israel, Which He has bestowed on them According to His mercies, According to the multitude of His loving kindnesses.”
Titus 3:4 “But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared …” • Application: God is loyal in His kindness toward His creation, and particularly toward His people. • It is a long-suffering love. • God is determined to keep His promises to His people even in the face of rebellion and sin.
5. Do I Really Know and Appreciate that God Relents From Doing Harm? • God repents of doing harm toward those who repent. • APPLICATION: God is willing to acknowledge that people change. • He is ready to begin again with them. • God is full of grace and mercy. • He is slow to anger and abundant in loving-kindness. • This is why God is willing to “relent” or “repent” from exercising judgment on us.