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Archive for September, 2016

“Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?” Romans 2:4

So what is your perspective of God? How do you see Him? The way you see Him can be a key factor for your relationship with God! Let’s read on and see what Paul, one of the foremost apostles and one who understood the heart of God has to say. It is difficult to analyze this verse fully by itself (without the context) but the essence of the truth that Paul is trying to convey is very well captured in that one phrase: ‘…the goodness of God leads you to repentance’.

Paul outlines three characteristics of God in this scripture: His Goodness, His Forbearance and His Longsuffering. These three characteristics sets the foundation and basis for repentance and acceptance with God!  Let’s look at each of these characteristics a little closely:

  • Goodness “chrestotes” means gentleness, kindness, integrity, moral excellence.
  • The forbearance “anoche” means tolerant and self-restraint. It is a quality of someone to be patient and to be able to deal with a difficult person or situation without becoming angry.
  • Longsuffering “makrothumia” means patience, endurance, slowness in avenging wrongs, a disposition to bear injuries patiently. Ability to refrain from the enforcement of something (debt or obligation) that is due.

The attitude and frame of mind in which God deals with people is in the richness of his goodness, forbearance and longsuffering. His goodness, forbearance and longsuffering towards us is in abundance, in fullness and in plentitude. It is not something that is there today and gone tomorrow but his goodness towards us is forever more.

The only place we can see this kind of richness in goodness, forbearance and longsuffering to some extent is in parenting. A father or a mother deal with their young children with tender love and in the abundance of goodness, forbearance and longsuffering. Parenting was God’s way of showing mankind how much he loves us and cares for us!

Do you feel good, when you are good and forbearing with someone? Yes, you do. God has put that nature in you. He has put the want to be good, forbearing and longsuffering in you! When you judge someone, you don’t see God as their father.

The goodness of God leads you to repentance. The whole purpose and plan around His goodness is to lead you back to Him! An underlying principle is that when you are good to a person – that will turn that person around – it may take some time but in due time it will happen!

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