Slow to Anger
Character of God Series
What does it mean for God to be slow to anger? In this video, we’ll explore how anger and justice shape our understanding of God’s character.

Questions for Personal Reflection or Group Discussion:

  1. To say that God is “long of nose” is to say that he is patient—it takes him a long time before he becomes angry. He gives people time to respond to his gracious warnings. In your culture, what expressions are used to describe a patient person?
  2. In 2 Peter 3:9, we read one of the reasons behind God’s patience. How would you interpret this passage? What does it suggest to you about God's character, and how does that change the way you see yourself and others?
  3. Let’s consider how Jesus took the consequences of evil upon himself as we read Romans 5:6-11. Does Jesus’ self-giving love help us see God’s anger toward evil and his patient love for people at the same time? If so, how?
  4. Take time to discuss other themes or key takeaways from what you read together.
The Attributes of God

Exodus 34:6-7 is the first description of God’s attributes found in the Bible, and it’s also the most referenced passage in the Bible. Here we learn that all of God’s actions are an expression of these attributes: compassion, grace, patience, loyal love, and faithfulness. This list of God’s character traits has been carefully designed to help us see the meaning and importance of each trait in relation to the others.

God's Core Character

How does God’s mercy relate to his passion for justice? Sometimes God brings severe consequences in response to human evil. But how does God’s mercy and love balance with his anger at destructive human behavior? These are crucial questions that the biblical authors love to explore in narrative, poetry, and in the literary design of this Exodus passage.

The passage tells us that God’s core character traits are rooted in generous mercy and loyal love, which means that God’s anger is not a primary attribute. It’s a divine reaction to selfish and destructive human decisions, and it’s rooted in God’s love. Just like you would get angry if you saw a beautiful work of art being vandalized, so God’s anger is a response to evil done to or by his human images. God would not be good if he didn’t get angry at evil.

God's Judgment

God’s anger and judgment is a really important theme in the Bible, but it’s not the whole story. God’s core character is one of generous love that created the world, and he plans to rescue and restore his creation from human evil. Exodus 34:6-7 invites us into a lifetime of pondering the depths and mysteries of the character of God.

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Exodus 34:6-7 is quoted and adapted by biblical authors more than any other passage in the Bible. In
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