1 From the time of creation until today, no group has enjoyed as much of God’s grace or mercy and lovingkindness as this final group. Although, in the final stage, God has done the work of judgment and chastisement, and has done His work with majesty and wrath, most of the time God only uses words to accomplish His work; He uses words to teach, and water, and provide, and feed. God’s wrath, meanwhile, has always been kept hidden, and apart from experiencing God’s wrathful disposition in His words, very few people have experienced His anger in person.
2 During God’s work of judgment and chastisement, although the wrath revealed in God’s words allows people to experience God’s majesty and intolerance of offense, this wrath does not go beyond His words. In other words, God uses words to rebuke man, expose man, judge man, chastise man, and even condemn man—but God has yet to be profoundly angry toward man, and has barely even unleashed His wrath upon man outside of His words. Thus, the mercy and lovingkindness of God experienced by man in this age are the revelation of God’s true disposition, while the wrath of God experienced by man is merely the effect of the tone and feel of His utterances. Many people wrongly take this effect to be the true experiencing and the true knowledge of God’s wrath.
3 Consequently, most people believe that they have seen God’s mercy and lovingkindness in His words, that they have also beheld God’s intolerance of man’s offense, and most of them have even come to appreciate God’s mercy and tolerance toward man. But no matter how bad man’s behavior, or how corrupt his disposition, God has always endured. In enduring, His aim is to wait for the words He has spoken, the efforts He has made and the price He has paid to achieve an effect in those whom He wishes to gain.
Adapted from “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself II” in The Word Appears in the Flesh