Romans 2:3-4 And thinkest thou this, O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God?
4 Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?
This passage comes just on the tail of a long discourse, proving that all men are equally under the law, its condemnation, and its penalty. This context is crucial to understanding this passage.
Many many people are very confused about God and His nature. They either do not believe that He exists or is able to do anything of consequence, because “how can a loving God allow all the sin and evil in the world?” Or they believe that He does not care about sin enough to judge anybody for it. Both stem from a misunderstanding of the nature of God’s goodness (and from a selfish desire to sin without consequences).
What we do not realize is that if God punished everybody as they deserved, or everybody as we would like other people to be punished, then we would also be punished. And everyone would spend eternity in hell. That is not what God made us for: He made us to love us and for us to love Him. We are always pointing fingers at everyone else, saying that he should not have gotten away with that. But we do not realize that we are equally guilty, and equally in need of punishment.
God waits, mercifully, for us to accept His proffered pardon, justly offered because of the sacrifice of His Son (I will not go into great detail of that part of the story for the sake of brevity, since I am assuming that my readers already understand it sufficiently to understand what I am saying here). He is patient, and exceedingly longsuffering with us, waiting and wanting us to turn to Him. He seeks for us to believe in Him and trust Him because He does not want to punish us. He is eternally and infinitely just and holy, and cannot pardon the guilty, but He is eternally and infinitely loving and gracious, seeking our release from bondage to sin and its punishments.
Knowing this, how can we say that someone else deserves more than what he got? He does, but so do you. He is being graciously served for his sake, just as you are. God is working in his life, just as He is working in yours. It is God’s goodness that leads us to Him, how can we drive others away from us because of it? Be patient and longsuffering just as He is towards you!
With joy and peace in Christ,