Summary: Fourth in the series - understanding the Patience of God - We can never produce true patience until we have experienced first hand, the patience of God.
1. Overview & Review
a. Over the past 3 weeks we have been talking about the Patience of God and what an incredible wonder His patience is.
i. We have come to understand that God’s patience is that which restrains His wrath from consuming all that is contrary to His nature.
ii. We learned that God has the right, the ability, the power and the means to destroy anyone of us or all of us for just a single violation of His divine law, but His patience restrains Him because He looks toward the goal He desires to have with each of us…which is that we would turn from our self-directed, self-oriented lives and turn toward Him.
iii. We have learned that God’s patience is ultimately His power of control over Himself, literally His power of self-restraint.
2. I want to illuminate one more aspect of God’s patience before I delve into how God intends to reproduce His patience in us.
a. Romans 3:23-25 says, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus; whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance (tolerance - anoche) of God He passed over the sins previously committed”
i. This passage tells us that we all sin and are all made right with God as a gift of His grace which comes through what Jesus did on the cross.
ii. In verse 25 we are told that God displayed Jesus as a public sacrifice for our sins to “demonstrate His righteousness.”
1. Most of you probably thought that Jesus died for our sins as a “demonstration of God’s love” didn’t you?
2. That was the secondary result – the primary reason that Jesus was a public sacrifice for our sins was to show us the utter holiness and righteousness of God – and the costliness and ugliness and horror of sin – even as the penalty for those sins was poured out on Jesus, God’s only Son.
iii. Why did God do it?
1. Because the passage says “in the tolerance of God, He passed over the sins previously committed.”
b. As we examine the truth of God’s patience with us, one thing that ought to SHOUT off the pages of our bibles is the incredible tolerance God demonstrates by BEARING our offences and sins as He waits for us to turn to Him.
i. Old Testament believers were forgiven based upon the animal sacrifice that they offered.
ii. But during the Old Testament period God’s justice was not served
1. This is because of a curious and key word – Propitiation.
2. The word “propitiation” found in this passage is never found in the Old Testament – because propitiation means “to fully satisfy the wrath and judgment of God.”
3. It is only in the New Testament that we find this concept – and it is only in the context of a person (Jesus) that it is found – “He (Jesus) is the propitiation…” (1 John 2:2)
4. Propitiation is the work of Christ on the Cross in which He met the demands of the righteousness of God against sin, satisfying the requirements of God’s justice and canceling the guilt of man’s sin!
iii. As we look across the horizon of history we see a demonstration of the tolerance and patience of God:
1. God didn’t just forgive sin and forget about the punishment it deserved during the Old Testament period.
2. Instead, He had forgiven sins and stored up His righteous wrath against those sins for a time in the future, a special time.
3. That special time was “in the fullness of time,” at the Cross, where the full fury of His stored up wrath against sin was unleashed against Jesus, His Son!
4. The sacrifices of the OT were the demonstration of God’s toleration of sin and patience as God bore our offense and waited. They were a tool to teach them the costliness of sin and the need for a substitute to bear their sin.
c. in the forbearance (tolerance - anoche) of God He passed over the sins previously committed
i. In this passage, it says God bypassed or “passed over” the sins formerly committed.
1. Bypassing here does not mean the sins were forgotten.
2. Instead, the term for “Passed over” (Paresis) is temporary in its connotation.
a. God passed over the sins of the people because of their animal sacrifices, with this passing over the sins resulting in a temporary suspension of His wrath toward both sin and sinner.
b. These sins weren’t remitted (wiped away), in the old Testament.
c. God did not forgive or take away the sins of Old Testament saints until Jesus died on the cross. T