God’s Patience Demonstrated
Category : General
Nahum 1: 3 (KJV)
3 The Lord is slow to anger, and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked: the Lord hath his way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet.
All things in nature are calculated to terrify the ungodly man. Sinner, hast thou ever seen the clouds as they roll along the sky! Those clouds are the dust of the feet of Jehovah. If these clouds are but the dust, what is He Himself? (C. H. Spurgeon.)
Our text, with its sublime and magnificent imagery, is full of consolation to the afflicted as well as terror to the impenitent. The link between the first sentence of the text and the last. He is “great in power.” He that is great in power has power over Himself. When God’s power doth restrain Himself, then it is power indeed. The purpose of this and following verses is to identify God as the real adversary of Nineveh, and thus the Lord used the most superlative terminology that men knew in order to demonstrate the impossibility of escape by the enemy.
These are the effects of his power; and when they appear unusual, they may be considered as the immediate effects of his power: and although he be in them to punish and destroy, he is in them to direct their course, to determine their operations, and to defend his followers from being injured by their violence. The pestilential wind which slew one hundred and eighty-five thousands of the Assyrians did not injure one Israelite.
Let us remember that God is able at all times to save or to destroy. He exercises much long suffering towards his enemies, that this may lead them to repentance. And it is because of this long suffering that vengeance is not speedily executed on every evil work.
Divine long-suffering gees along with Divine power. God can be long-suffering, because He can, whenever He sees good, punish. His long-suffering is a token, not of weakness, but of power. He can allow persons the whole extent of trial, because, when they are past cure, He can end it at once. “God is a righteous judge, strong and patient, and God wrath every day” Psalm 7:11. The wrath comes only at the last, but it is ever present with God. He cannot but be displeased with the sin; and so the Psalmist describes in the manner of men the gradual approximation to its discharge.
The last attribute is this–“He will not at all acquit the wicked.” Never once has God pardoned an unpunished sin. Trace this attribute to its source, and you find it in this, because He is good.” (C. H. Spurgeon.)
Have a great and God filled day!