Vance Pitman

"Slow to Anger"

Who is God?
Oct 24, 2021
Exodus 34:6

In this message, Pastor Vance continues our series “Who Is God” from the book of Exodus and teaches on the what the Bible means when it says that He is “slow to anger.” What is the difference between our anger and God’s anger? We explore that question and more in this message!

Sermon Notes

Who is God?  “… slow to anger”

Exodus 34:6

“When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” – John 8:44b

“The idolatrous heart assumes that God is other than He is and substitutes for the true God one made after our own likeness…The essence of idolatry is the entertainment of thoughts that God that are unworthy of Him.” – A.W. Tozer (The Knowledge of the Holy, p. 3)

“The LORD passed before him and proclaimed, ’The LORD, the LORD, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children and the children’s children, to the third and the fourth generation.’ And Moses quickly bowed his head toward the earth and worshiped.” – Exodus 34:6-8

Anger (noun): the strong feeling you get when you think someone has treated you badly or unfairly, that makes you want to hurt them or shout at them (MacMillan Dictionary)

God’s anger is His resolute opposition towards anything that threatens His righteous design for the creation He loves


“Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice.” – Ephesians 4:31

“Be angry and do not sin…” – Ephesians 4:26a

Unrighteous anger – Emotional, out of control anger at things that aren’t the way I want them to be

Righteous anger – Holy Spirit controlled anger at things that aren’t the way God designed them to be

Sin angers the heart of God, not because of His disappointment in me, but because of sin’s devastation of His loving plan for me!

“Therefore the anger of the LORD was kindled against his people, and he stretched out his hand against them and struck them, and the mountains quaked; and their corpses were as refuse in the midst of the streets. For all this his anger has not turned away, and his hand is stretched out still.” – Isaiah 5:25

” Then the earth reeled and rocked; the foundations also of the mountains trembled and quaked, because he was angry. Smoke went up from his nostrils, and devouring fire from his mouth; glowing coals flamed forth from him… The Lord also thundered in the heavens and the Most High uttered his voice, hailstones and coals of fire. And he sent out his arrows and scattered them; he flashed forth lightnings and routed them. Then the channels of the sea were seen, and the foundations of the world were laid bare at your rebuke, O Lord, at the blast of the breath of your nostrils.” – Psalm 18:7-8,13-15

“The anger of God is ‘His steady, unrelenting, unremitting, uncompromising antagonism to evil in all its forms and manifestations.’” – John Stott (The Cross of Christ, p. 171)


1) God is always patient towards us

“The Lord doesn’t have his finger on the trigger. It takes much accumulated provoking to draw out his ire. Unlike us, who are often emotional dams ready to break, God can put up with a lot…His anger requires provocation; his mercy is pent up, ready to gush forth. We tend to think: divine anger is pent up, spring-loaded; divine mercy is slow to build. It’s just the opposite. Divine mercy is ready to burst forth at the slightest prick.” – Dane Ortlund (Gentle and Lowly, p.148)

2) God is always patient towards us because He loves us

“But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.” – 2 Peter 3:8-9

3) There is a limit to the patience of God

“And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment.” – Hebrews 9:27

“Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance?” – Romans 2:4

“Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.” – Galatians 6:7-8

Sermon Notes
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