God Is Gracious

Moses had an extraordinary relationship with the Lord God and wanted to see His glory. God favored Moses for many reasons, which we know, and, importantly, because he knew God’s name. God noted that being a gracious person to those who were His People, His Children, He would grant Moses’ request but told Moses that he could not look at His face or he would die.

Ex. 33:19 And He said, “I Myself will make all My goodness pass before you, and will proclaim the name of the LORD before you; and I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show compassion on whom I will show compassion.”

To know God’s name, the Eternal, self-Existent Creator gives a person reason to love God and adhere to His will. Further, we know God has many attributes, names if you will, that also help us to know Him better. So, His proclaiming His name gives the foundation to all the characteristics we know of Him. As the verse says immediately after God declared His Name, He connects His graciousness and compassion with His Name.

As God moved past Moses He reiterates His Name and how who He is means He has compassion and graciousness. Additionally, He states that it takes a long time for His anger to erupt. Mankind opposed God vehemently for about a thousand years before God caused the flood waters to explode upon the Earth, thus destroying them. There are many examples of how God’s graciousness led to His patience coupled with His love and Truth, even to His self-proclaimed enemies.

Ex. 34:6 Then the LORD passed by in front of him and proclaimed, “The LORD, the LORD God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth;

2603a. NÅnDj chanan [335d]; a prim. root; to show favor, be gracious:

Def:  courteous, kind, and pleasant.

ORIGIN Middle English : via Old French from Latin gratiosus, from gratia ‘esteem, favor.’

“You can see this split in the two main headings for the definition of gratia in Lewis and Short. On the one hand, gratia is something that someone shows to you, not so much "thanks" but rather their "favor" to you, the "grace" they bestow upon you: I. A. Favor which one finds with others, esteem, regard, liking, love, friendship (syn. favor) B. Transf., objectively, like the Gr. xa/ris, agreeableness, pleasantness, charm, beauty, loveliness, grace.

“Alternatively, Latin gratia can be the "favor" you do for someone else, the "thanks" that you give to them, a sign of your "gratitude," etc.: II. A. Favor which one shows to another, mark of favor, kindness, courtesy, service, obligation. B. In partic., a mark of favor shown for a service rendered, thanks (by word or deed), thankfulness, gratitude; acknowledgment, return, requital.

“This reciprocal relationship embodied in the word gratia helps to expose the deep logic of today's proverb - and also the impossibility of translating it into English! When you say in Latin gratia gratiam parit, you are expressing that reciprocal relationship: a person's gracious favor engenders grateful thanks on your part; and your act of thanksgiving to that person, in turn, engenders their gratitude, and so on.

“Isn't it lovely? English has derived many word from Latin gratia, such as "grace," "gracious," "grateful," "gratitude," and even "gratuitous" and "ingrate" - but all those separate words do not manage to convey the reciprocality inherent in the definition of Latin gratia itself.”  Web.

God graciously acceded to Abraham’s request not to destroy Sodom and Gomorra if there be ten people not evil because he had in mind that his nephew might be destroyed with the others. Eventually, God removed Lot from the danger.

Gen. 18:32 Then he said, “Oh may the Lord not be angry, and I shall speak only this once; suppose ten are found there?” And He said, “I will not destroy it on account of the ten.”

God graciously told Moses about His plan to free Israel from Egyptian bondage.

Ex. 3:16 “Go and gather the elders of Israel together and say to them, ‘The LORD, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, has appeared to me, saying, “I am indeed concerned about you and what has been done to you in Egypt.
Ex. 3:17 “So I said, I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt to the land of the Canaanite and the Hittite and the Amorite and the Perizzite and the Hivite and the Jebusite, to a land flowing with milk and honey.”’

Proverbs extends God’s graciousness to people’s way of treating other people.

Ex. 22:26 “If you ever take your neighbor’s cloak as a pledge, you are to return it to him before the sun sets,
Ex. 22:27 for that is his only covering; it is his cloak for his body. What else shall he sleep in? And it shall come about that when he cries out to Me, I will hear him, for I am gracious.

God will listen to people calling on His graciousness as He did with Moses.

Num. 14:17 “But now, I pray, let the power of the Lord be great, just as You have declared,
Num. 14:18 ‘The LORD is slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, forgiving iniquity and transgression; but He will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generations.’
Num. 14:19 “Pardon, I pray, the iniquity of this people according to the greatness of Your lovingkindness, just as You also have forgiven this people, from Egypt even until now.”

While people may forget the Covenant, God will not, and He will, further, actively encourage people to honor their part of the Covenant.

Deut. 4:31 “For the LORD your God is a compassionate God; He will not fail you nor destroy you nor forget the covenant with your fathers which He swore to them.
Deut. 7:9 “Know therefore that the LORD your God, He is God, the faithful God, who keeps His covenant and His lovingkindness to a thousandth generation with those who love Him and keep His commandments;

Keeping the Commandments, written into the very creation as we have shown, is people’s part of the Covenant.

Ex. 31:18 ¶ When He had finished speaking with him upon Mount Sinai, He gave Moses the two tablets of the testimony, tablets of stone, written by the finger of God.

Dan. 9:4 I prayed to the LORD my God and confessed and said, “Alas, O Lord, the great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant and lovingkindness for those who love Him and keep His commandments,

Deut. 5:8 ¶ ‘You shall not make for yourself an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth.
Deut. 5:9 ‘You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, and on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me,
Deut. 5:10 but showing lovingkindness to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.

While God expects His People to keep the Covenant of love and honoring God, His graciousness comes from within Him from His lovingkindness.

Psa. 51:1Be gracious to me, O God, according to Your lovingkindness;
According to the greatness of Your compassion blot out my transgressions.

We remember God’s graciousness from times past, which tells us about times present.

Neh. 9:17 “They refused to listen, And did not remember Your wondrous deeds which You had performed among them; So they became stubborn and appointed a leader to return to their slavery in Egypt.
                But You are a God of forgiveness,
                Gracious and compassionate,
                Slow to anger and abounding in lovingkindness;
                And You did not forsake them.
Neh. 9:18 “Even when they made for themselves
                A calf of molten metal
                And said, ‘This is your God
                Who brought you up from Egypt,’
                And committed great blasphemies,
Neh. 9:19 You, in Your great compassion,
                Did not forsake them in the wilderness;
                The pillar of cloud did not leave them by day,
                To guide them on their way,
                Nor the pillar of fire by night, to light for them the way in which they were to go.

God’s graciousness extends even to hearing our prayers, especially when we are in need, sometimes great need.

Psa. 4:1  Answer me when I call, O God of my righteousness!
                You have relieved me in my distress;
                Be gracious to me and hear my prayer.

How does one compete with David’s praise of God?

Psa. 8:1  O LORD, our Lord,
                How majestic is Your name in all the earth,
                Who have displayed Your splendor above the heavens!
Psa. 8:2 From the mouth of infants and nursing babes You have established strength Because of Your adversaries,
                To make the enemy and the revengeful cease.
Psa. 8:3 When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers,
                The moon and the stars, which You have ordained;
Psa. 8:4  What is man that You take thought of him,
                And the son of man that You care for him?
Psa. 8:5 Yet You have made him a little lower than God,
                And You crown him with glory and majesty!
Psa. 8:6  You make him to rule over the works of Your hands;
                You have put all things under his feet,
Psa. 8:7 All sheep and oxen,
                And also the beasts of the field,
Psa. 8:8 The birds of the heavens and the fish of the sea,
                Whatever passes through the paths of the seas.
Psa. 8:9 O LORD, our Lord,
                How majestic is Your name in all the earth!

We know God is gracious and therefore we put our faith in Him, for we have good reason to trust Him because of whom He is.

Psa. 9:10  And those who know Your name will put their trust in You,
               For You, O LORD, have not forsaken those who seek You.

We are ever mindful of God’s graciousness, which people of old encountered and people of now continue to experience. God’s graciousness permeates the pages of His Word because He exemplifies His desire to all He came to give joy and life to those made in His image. Furthermore, believers who are willing to do all God asks receive the blessing of growing evermore in His image.

Psa. 25:6 Be mindful of thy mercy, O LORD, and of thy steadfast love, for they have been from of old.

Those who worship God and seek Him out in times of stress experience His graciousness and stand in the showers of His goodness.

Psa. 31:19 O how abundant is thy goodness, which thou hast laid up for those who fear thee, and wrought for those who take refuge in thee, in the sight of the sons of men!
Psa. 36:7 How precious is thy steadfast love, O God! The children of men take refuge in the shadow of thy wings.

God has several appellations like the Gracious One. To know God’s name gives one the  knowledge of whom God is, as noted above. Thereby, a believer can properly worship God anywhere in the world.

Psa. 48:10 As is Your name, O God,
                So is Your praise to the ends of the earth;
                Your right hand is full of righteousness.

We have heard about the Eternal God and Creator and praise Him; therefore, He cannot become fatigued and He knows everything.

Is. 40:28  Do you not know? Have you not heard?
                The Everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth
                Does not become weary or tired.
                His understanding is inscrutable.

Well over a hundred scriptures demonstrate God’s preeminence over all; He is the singular and only One Person who is God. When a person realizes His Singularity, he has discovered the True God, not some false pretender deceiving almost all mankind. He, then, has the capability of being gracious to all mankind in order that they may learn of Him, Our Father, My Father, in heaven.

Is. 45:5 “I am the LORD, and there is no other;
                Besides Me there is no God.
                I will gird you, though you have not known Me;
Is. 45:6 That men may know from the rising to the setting of the sun
                That there is no one besides Me.
                I am the LORD, and there is no other,
Is. 45:7 The One forming light and creating darkness,
                Causing well-being and creating calamity;
                I am the LORD who does all these.
Is. 45:8 “Drip down, O heavens, from above,
                And let the clouds pour down righteousness;
                Let the earth open up and salvation bear fruit,
                And righteousness spring up with it.
                I, the LORD, have created it.

As we learn of God’s graciousness and lovingkindness, we cry out to Him only with our fears in times of dire distress and know He will save us. We worship and praise the Father and learn to live by His Way becoming His Children safe in His Kingdom now and forever.

Psa. 86:5 For You, Lord, are good, and ready to forgive,
               And abundant in lovingkindness to all who call upon You.
Psa. 86:6 Give ear, O LORD, to my prayer;
                And give heed to the voice of my supplications!
Psa. 86:7 In the day of my trouble I shall call upon You,
                For You will answer me.
Psa. 86:8 There is no one like You among the gods, O Lord,
                Nor are there any works like Yours.
Psa. 86:9  All nations whom You have made shall come and worship before You, O Lord, And they shall glorify Your name.
Psa. 86:10 For You are great and do wondrous deeds;
                You alone are God.
Psa. 86:11Teach me Your way, O LORD;
                I will walk in Your truth;
                Unite my heart to fear Your name.
Psa. 86:12 I will give thanks to You, O Lord my God, with all my heart, And will glorify Your name forever.
Psa. 86:13  For Your lovingkindness toward me is great,
       And You have delivered my soul from the depths of Sheol.
Psa. 86:14 O God, arrogant men have risen up against me,
                And a band of violent men have sought my life,
                And they have not set You before them.
Psa. 86:15But You, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious,
                Slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness and truth.

Psa. 103:8 The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
Psa. 103:9 He will not always chide, nor will he keep his anger for ever.
Psa. 103:10 He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor requite us according to our iniquities.
Psa. 103:11 For as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;
Psa. 103:12 as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.
Psa. 103:13 As a father pities his children, so the LORD pities those who fear him.

Again and again God demonstrates His gracious nature responding to the steadfast and the laggardly ones trying hard, but in vain, not to repent.

Psa. 145:8 The LORD is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.

Joel 2:13 and rend your hearts and not your garments.” Return to the LORD, your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love, and repents of evil.

Jonah did not want God’s graciousness visited upon a certain group of people he cared not for, but knew that God would forgive and bless the repentant.

Jonah 4:2 And he prayed to the LORD and said,  “I pray thee, LORD, is not this what I said when I was yet in my country? That is why I made haste to flee to Tarshish; for I knew that thou art a gracious God and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love, and repentest of evil.

God has taken us into the past through His Word, so that we may see His Goodness and graciousness. That journey into those thrilling days of yesteryear, we relive the past denied to us and know of God’s singular greatness, love and graciousness.

Psa. 111:4 He has caused his wonderful works to be remembered; the LORD is gracious and merciful.
Psa. 111:5 He provides food for those who fear him; he is ever mindful of his covenant.
Psa. 111:6 He has shown his people the power of his works, in giving them the heritage of the nations.
Psa. 111:7 The works of his hands are faithful and just; all his precepts are trustworthy,
Psa. 111:8 they are established for ever and ever, to be performed with faithfulness and uprightness.

Psa. 112:4 Light rises in the darkness for the upright; the LORD is gracious, merciful, and righteous.

Psa. 116:5 Gracious is the LORD, and righteous; our God is merciful.

Day by day, we reject those habits and predilections of bygone misspent days because God’s graciousness guides us into the light of His lovingkindness.

Rom. 2:4 Or do you presume upon the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience? Do you not know that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance?