by Jonathan McLeod

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Propitiation (3 of 4)
Series: Finished
Jonathan McLeod

Men, have any of you ever forgotten your anniversary? (I won't ask for a raise of hands.) It's one of the biggest mistakes a husband can make. Forgetting your anniversary is sure to make your wife angry (or at least very annoyed). When a man forgets his anniversary, what does he often do? He goes out and buys his wife a gift (flowers, jewelry, etc.) hoping that when he gives her the gift she will no longer be mad at him.

You could say a husband's gift for his upset wife is an example of propitiation. Propitiation is an offering that appeases the wrath of someone.


• God's wrath: His righteous hatred of all that is SINFUL.

"Remember! Do not forget how you provoked the LORD your God to wrath in the wilderness. For the day that you departed from the land of Egypt until you came to this place, you have been rebellious against the LORD. Also in Horeb you provoked the Lord to wrath, so that the LORD was angry enough with you to have destroyed you" (Deuteronomy 9:7-8).

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness (Romans 1:18).

• God's mercy: His goodness to those who are in MISERY and DISTRESS.

"Nevertheless in Your great mercy You did not utterly consume them nor forsake them; for You are God, gracious and merciful" (Nehemiah 9:31).

Turn Yourself to me, and have mercy on me, for I am desolate and afflicted. The troubles of my heart have enlarged; bring me out of my distresses! (Psalm 25:16-17).

• God HATES sin, but He LOVES to show mercy.

The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in mercy (Psalm 103:8).

You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy (Micah 7:18 NIV).


The cover of the ark of the Testimony (covenant) is traditionally known as the mercy seat ("seat" meaning "location"). The NIV translates the original Hebre ...

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