God Is Patient

May 3, 2020 Speaker: Series: God Is ...

Topic: Sunday Sermons Passage: Nehemiah 9:1–38, Galatians 5:22–23, 1 Timothy 1:12–16

The whole outlook of mankind might be changed if we could all believe that we dwell under a friendly sky and that the God of heaven, though exalted in power and majesty is eager to be friends with us.

  • A. W. Tozer. The Knowledge of the Holy (p. 107)

God’s Patience

God's patience [is often] cited in connection with His Mercy. The Old Testament frequently speaks of God has "slow to anger". In the New Testament, Paul speaks about God's "kindness, forbearance and patience." saying that Jesus Christ displayed his "Perfect patience" toward Paul himself as an example to others.

  • Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology


Mercy + Grace + Patience = Goodness


God's MERCY is His goodness toward those in misery and distress

God's GRACE is His goodness toward those who deserve only punishment

God's PATIENCE is His goodness in withholding of punishment toward those who sin over a period of time

  • Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology


If you will look to Jesus, if you will trust God, if you will do what the Levites have done in Nehemiah 9, if you will come to the place, as the Levites do in verse 38, where you are ready to enter into a covenant with God through Christ by the power of the Spirit, God will save you. God will show you His great mercies, His abundant compassion. 


If you’re not a Christian, when you feel that weight of justice hanging over you, look to Christ. Seek the Lord who acts according to His great mercy and forgives people. Trust Him to do that for you. 


If you are a Christian but you struggle with guilt, look to Christ. Celebrate God’s great mercy, and live in that mercy. No wrath remains for those who hope in Christ.

  • Hamilton, Jr., James M.. Exalting Jesus in Ezra-Nehemiah (Christ-Centered Exposition Commentary)


The greatness of God rouses fear within us, but His goodness encourages us not to be afraid of Him. To fear and not be afraid – that is the paradox of faith.

  • A. W. Tozer. The Knowledge of the Holy (p. 108)


God is patient with us because he does not need to worry about us. He knows, without any hint of

anxiety, how all things will work out. When we as finite creatures are impatient, however, we sometimes show anxiety or frustration about the outcome.

  • Jones, Mark. God Is (p. 147). Crossway.

Our Response

As with most of the attributes of God that we are to imitate with our lives, patience requires a moment-by-moment trust in God to fulfill His promises and purposes in our lives at His chosen time. Our confidence that the Lord will soon fulfill His purposes for our good and His glory will enable us to be patient. James makes this connection when he says, "You also be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand." (James 5:8)

  • Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology


We can look back on events in our lives when God could have justly cast us into outer darkness but did not. Even our sins he can use for his glory (Gen. 50:20). When we consider the glories of God’s wise and loving patience toward us in Christ Jesus, then we are better prepared to display patience toward others as we seek to imitate God’s patience and see the Spirit’s fruit in our lives.

  • Jones, Mark. God Is (p. 147). Crossway,


It is such a good thing that God’s grace is patient grace because the transformation of our hearts is a process not an event. 

  • Paul Tripp


Gospel (News of God's Goodness)
+ Safety (Mercy & Grace toward others)
+ Time (Patience)

= Healthy Church Community

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