God Does Not Afflict Willingly

Read the Bible in a year by reading Lamentations 3-5 today.
Yes, there is plenty of God’s wrath revealed in the Bible. Yet, it is not something that He does delightfully. Jeremiah reassured us, saying,
For the Lord will not cast off forever.
Though He causes grief,
Yet He will show compassion
According to the multitude of His mercies.
For He does not afflict willingly,
Nor grieve the children of men.
(Lamentations 3:31-33).
The story of the Bible is the story of the abundant mercies of God. Truly, He afflicts that He may have mercy. He shows mercy when He sees repentance. He often does not see repentance, until men and women have seen affliction. Then they realize that they had not obeyed the Lord or that they had not obeyed Him fully from the heart. They make the necessary corrections and then He opens the storehouse of His mercy.
His word hits us hard sometimes, but it is necessary to change us. It hurts. We grieve day and night. Realizing that we have nowhere else to go, we humble ourselves before the great God and He, through the death of His Son, fills our lives with mercy that we thought that we would never see.

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Don Ruhl

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