The Lord passed before him and proclaimed, “The Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children and the children’s children, to the third and the fourth generation.”(Exodus 34:6–7, ESV)
Who made this amazing proclamation? The Lord proclaimed it; he proclaimed it about himself. Think about that for a minute. This is not what Moses or someone else declared to be true about God. This is what God declared.
What did the Lord call himself? “The Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious….” This name, “The Lord,”comes from the Hebrew word “YHWH,” the proper name of God. He says his name twice: “The Lord, the Lord.” Typically in Scripture, this kind of repetition is for emphasis.
And how is God describing himself? He is emphasizing that he is merciful, gracious, slow to anger, abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness. He then makes it clear that he is steadfast in his love for thousands and that he forgives their sin. He also declares that he is just; therefore, he will not clear the guilty, and he will visit the sin of the non-repentant upon their descendants.
Have you repented and received God’s mercy, grace, love, and faithfulness? God is waiting to show you his great goodness. He is patient with you. He desires to pour out his steadfast faithfulness on you. Let’s focus on mercy and grace. God’s mercyis compassionate and forgiving. Although he has the authority and power to punish people for their sins, in mercy he withholds punishment for those who repent. So God’s mercy is his legal compassion. God’s gracespeaks of God’s relational compassion or favor. Grace is the unmerited favor of God. So, in light of how much God has given you, how do you extend that mercy and grace to others? Will you extend it?
Lord, I repent of the thoughts, desires, words, and behaviors that do not align with your Word. God, you are merciful and gracious. Help me to extend your mercy and grace to others…. (Continue praying.)