Psalm 103:8 (NIV)
8 The LORD is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love.
How often I have heard the words from those who have only read a brief part of the old testament as they complain that the God of the Old Testament is a harsh unloving vengeful God.
My very quick response to them is that they have never read the Old Testament if that is the conclusion they have reached. Hear what the psalmist says about God in this passage. God is compassionate. He is moved by our plight in our fallen world. He is not just moved by compassion but he actually prepared something far before any of us would ever see our need for a savior from our sin.
He created us knowing full well that we would rebel against him and suffer because of it. This was not something that caught him unaware it was something that he planned for before time began. His compassion before we were ever born caused him to provide a way out of our fallen state through His Son’s sacrifice on the cross.
He is gracious to offer us a way out when there is no way we could ever deserve such an offering. It is his grace that crafted a way out of our sin and rebellion. But he is not just compassionate and gracious but he is slow to anger. He does not judge us instantly as our sins deserve but he waits longing for all to come to repentance. It is because of the cross that even the rebel can find a home. Those who refuse to receive Christ in this life still experience his race that causes the rain to fall and the sun to shine and his mercy to be shown to all.
O but this is not all dear saint. He is not only compassionate and gracious and slow to anger but abounding in love. The word abounding indicates that this is something that he has reserves of we can never exhaust.
O come to this fountain so rich and sweet and cast your pour bankrupt soul at the Savior’s feet, plunge in today and be made complete. His compassion is enough, his grace is plenteous, his long-suffering yet waits to be gracious to you and his love is abounding towards all who will come to HIm.
Come home now and find your eternal rest and peace in the one who is all this and more,