102. A lifetime of favour.
'His anger lasts only a moment but his favour lasts a lifetime.' (Psalm 30:5) Though Scripture says, 'His wrath can flare up in a moment' (Psalm 2:12), it actually doesn't develop instantly but over a period of time. For instance, God's anger against Nineveh, the capital city of Assyria, had not appeared overnight but was in the process. He had sent Prophet Jonah to warn them earlier (Jonah 3:4) and when they repented, he relented from overthrowing their city (3:10), just as he overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah. Nevertheless, their repentance did not last long and they returned to their evil ways. Therefore, the Prophet Nahum predicted the downfall of Nineveh (Nahum 1:8) and it came true within a few years ! Nineveh fell , never to rise again! Both Alexander the great and Napoleon camped near it but had no idea that a city had ever been there because the site was only known as 'the mound of many sheep'. God's anger, while slow to develop, was sure! But there are no 'fits of rage' with him. Why else would Scripture call 'fits of rage', an act of the sinful nature? (Galatians 5:20) 'For man's anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.' (James 1:20) God's anger is nothing but righteous indignation against willful sin, which we humans cannot imitate. He is not angry with us for anything and everything as we humans are. That is why parents are advised not to 'exasperate (intensely irritate or frustrate) their children'.(Ephesians 6:4) If God gets angry, it would be because of a definite reason. The Lord's anger burned against Moses because he said, "O Lord, please send someone else to do it?" (Exodus 4:13-14) That rash reply by Moses meant forty years of training in the desert, all wasted just in a moment! However, God's anger was just momentary because the Lord said to Moses thereafter: "I know you by name and you have found favour with me." (Exodus 33:12) Truly his anger lasts only a moment but his favour lasts a lifetime! A moment of favour is worth more than a lifetime of labour because favour can achieve in a moment what labour can't achieve in a lifetime! He will put us in places where our labour cannot take us. Amen.