Some evidence about what the Lord (in the Old Testament) is really like.
The LORD passed before him [Moses] 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.”
But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.
The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
The LORD is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
They refused to obey and were not mindful of the wonders that you performed among them, but they stiffened their neck and appointed a leader to return to their slavery in Egypt. But you are a God ready to forgive, gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, and did not forsake them.
And he [Jonah] prayed to the LORD and said, “O 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 you are a gracious God and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, and relenting from disaster.
“Yet even now,” declares the LORD, “return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning; 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 he relents over disaster.
The Lord: merciful, gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love, ready to forgive, relenting from disaster.
So why do I hear the frequent accusation that God ‘changed’ for the New Testament to finally learn grace and love? Perhaps we are all like Jonah: we know the goodness of God’s mercy, but dislike God’s mercy – it’s easier to flee.