Here is an illustration of of God's Goodness:
A little girl and her mother were reading the New Testament one morning when they came to
John 3:16 “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”
Stopping for a moment in the reading the mother asked, "Don't you think it is wonderful?" The child, looking surprised, replied in a negative way. The mother, somewhat astonished, repeated the question, to which the little daughter replied, "Why, no, Mommy, it would be wonderful if it were anybody else, but it is just like God." The little girl was absolutely right. It is God's nature to give freely of His grace and of His mercy and through these, offers forgiveness for all.
(from Illustrations of Bible Truths Copyright © 1995, 1998 by AMG International, Inc. All rights reserved. Used by permission.)
Here is a wonderful Scripture to help us focus on God's Goodness.
Romans 8:29-30 29 For God knew his people in advance, and he chose them to become like his Son, so that his Son would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. 30 And having chosen them, he called them to come to him. And having called them, he gave them right standing with himself. And having given them right standing, he gave them his glory.
Last week I was reminded of the victory we have in Jesus and spent this past week thinking about the goodness of God; pondering the statement “How good is God!” Pondered the wonderful presence of God in all things in our lives. God’s goodness is poured out into our lives changing from the inside so that what we do is more like Jesus. In 2 Corinthians 5:17; Colossians 6:14-16 emphasizes the newness of being in Christ Jesus.
One thing we are aware for sure is that we will never be a perfect model like Christ. Our challenge is to be more loving, more caring, more faithful, more obedient, more compassionate, more inspirational, and more forgiving as we apply the knowledge and the wisdom we obtain from the Holy Spirit. The thing is it is not about how much more I can be, it is about God's Goodness filling me so that goodness flows out of me!
Galatians 6:9 So let's not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don't give up.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 16 Always be joyful. 17 Never stop praying. 18 Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.
The Psalmist stated perfectly his focus of God.
Psalm 86:5 O Lord, you are so good, so ready to forgive, so full of unfailing love for all who ask for your help.
Much like any caring parent, God takes delight in providing gifts to His children.
Romans 8:28 states, “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.”
Easton’s Dictionary, a common Bible dictionary, tells us that biblical Goodness is a precision of God’s character which He exercises towards His creation according to their various circumstances and relations
Psalms 145:8-9 The Lord is merciful and compassionate, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. The Lord is good to everyone. He showers compassion on all his creation.
God’s goodness as poured into His creations has mercy and compassion. God’s goodness for the un-repentant sinners is His long-suffering patience. God’s goodness provided for His children is His grace. “God’s goodness appears in two very specific ways: giving and forgiving.” (Easton’s Dictionary)
As we seek to identify with God and become like Jesus, our character, the inside of us, is shaped and molded. Someone once said, “Goodness consists not so much in the outward things we do but in the inward things we are.” Those inward things come from God giving His Son and Holy Spirit to transform us into His perfect image. Remember the Psalmist’s focus, “you are so good, so ready to forgive, so full of unfailing love for all who ask for your help.”
There are at least four things that will help us apply and embrace His Goodness in our lives.
God’s Goodness Supplies all the temporal stuff - Job, money, health, family
Think about how He takes care of you and provides for your welfare. Jesus teaches about these things
Matthew 6:31-34 31 "So don't worry about these things, saying, 'What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?' 32 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. 33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. 34 "So don't worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today's trouble is enough for today.
God’s Goodness Leads to Repentance
Because He loves you; He wants fellowship with you. We must evaluate our sin in light of His grace, mercy and goodness.
Romans 2:4 Don't you see how wonderfully kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Does this mean nothing to you? Can't you see that his kindness is intended to turn you from your sin?
His goodness provided a Savior
John 4:42 Then they said to the woman, "Now we believe, not just because of what you told us, but because we have heard him ourselves. Now we know that he is indeed the Savior of the world."
God’s Goodness Is Expressed in His Forgiveness
Grace – “Amazing Grace how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me.”
Acts 2:38-39 38 Peter replied, "Each of you must repent of your sins, turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ to show that you have received forgiveness for your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 This promise is to you, and to your children, and even to the Gentiles—all who have been called by the Lord our God.
His Goodness allows us to access His Kingdom.
Colossians 1:13 For he has rescued us from the kingdom of darkness and transferred us into the Kingdom of his dear Son,
Dear Friends, what joy and excitement there is to know we are called and encouraged to be like Jesus! What joy wells up within our hearts to know that God’s goodness is provided for us to become like Jesus!
2 Peter 1:3 By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know him, the one who called us to himself by means of his marvelous glory and excellence.
In His goodness, God has called you His special people, set apart for His special purposes.
1 Peter 2:9 … “You are royal priests, a holy nation, God's very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.
In the pouring out of God’s goodness, appearing in His giving and forgiving, let’s take a moment humble ourselves and express our thanksgiving/gratitude for God’s goodness in our lives.
Take a moment in quietness before God and listen to His goodness for you today.
In a world that does everything to tear us down, to tempt us, to be critical and judgmental – let’s provide others and ourselves the grace that is needed to encourage one another. Let’s provide the hope that resides in us all for those who need help to know how good God is.
Jeremiah 29:11-12 For I know the plans I have for you," says the Lord. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. in those days when you pray, I will listen.
Psalm 67:1 May God be merciful and bless us. May his face smile with favor on us.
Dean Walker; Pastor