The Admirable Patience of God

Since my conversion to Christ in 1984, I have enjoyed and benefited from reading books about the attributes of God. I’ve also been drawn to the writings of the Puritans. So, a couple months ago, I purchased a little book by George Swinnock.

In a short chapter entitled Patience, Swinnock begins,

God is incomparable in His patience. Patience is that attribute of God whereby He bears with sinners, deferring their punishment or awaiting their conversion. He is “slow to anger” (Ps. 103:8). He is long-suffering (2 Peter 3:9). He endures vessels of wrath with “much long-suffering” (Rom. 9:22). He waits, “that he may be gracious unto you” (Isa. 30:18).

Swinnock then gives three reasons God’s patience is even more admirable. First, God hates sin. Second, God sees sinners. Third, sinners provoke God’s patience. He then concludes,

If God were as impatient as we are, there would be no hope for us. But God is so incomparable in His patience that He is called ‘the God of patience’ (Rom. 15:5). He has all manner of patience in Him.

If you enjoy studying the attributes of God, consider adding Swinnock’s little volume to your devotional reading list.

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