Ps 103 continues the theme that God is "forgiving but not indulgent"

Yesterday I referenced Ex 34 to show that God is "forgiving but not indulgent" (as Lauren put it so well). Today I would like to quote a portion of Ps 103, which apparently draws on Ex 34. It is easy to see the similarities.

Here is Ps 103:6-14...

6 The LORD works righteousness and justice for all the oppressed.
7 He made known his ways to Moses, his deeds to the people of Israel:
8 The LORD is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love.
9 He will not always accuse, nor will he harbor his anger forever;
10 he does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities.
11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him;
12 as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
13 As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him;
14 for he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust.

Is God forgiving? Absolutely. He is compassionate, and his grace far exceeds our offenses. But is he indulgent? Does he wink the eye at our disobedience? As v. 9 says, "He will not always accuse, not will he harbor his anger forever." Thus, there are seasons in which God exercises justice by punishing humanity for being destructive. But overall, Ps 103 is consistent with Ex 34 in that the emphasis is put on God's mercy, compassion, and forgiveness, and grace. So much for the God who angrily watches you, just waiting for you to slip up so he can crush you.


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