The words of G-d through His prophet Isaiah (27:4):
I have no wrath; if only I could be as briars and thorns at war, I would step on her, I would set them aflame altogether.
“I have no wrath” — I cannot express My case to pour out my wrath against the nations, for Israel, too, sins.
“if only I could be as briers and thorns at war” — against those with whom I am at war, and that is Ishmael. If only I could punish them without the objection of the Attribute of Justice! If the Children of Israel would repent, that would set Me as briars and thorns against those with whom I am at war! I would step over the Attribute of Justice and punish them (Ishmael)… and set them aflame altogether.”
Interestingly, Rashi interprets this end-times prophecy as referring to Ishmael, the progenitor of the Arab nations, though I’m not sure how this is indicated by the text. Remarkably, though, according to Rashi, this reflects accurately the current state of Israel’s affairs, very much oppressed and abused by the Arab peoples from both within and without its borders. Why does G-d not rescue us from our woes and punish the wicked ones? Because we too are wicked! We too commit wrongdoing and do not repent, so we have no right to demand “justice” against our enemies when the same claim can be made against the Jews. The Jewish people must return to the ways of the Torah; this is the only route to providing salvation from our enemies. Until then, even G-d must act “fairly,” though it is not He that holds back the redemption, it is we.
See also this post.