In my third book The Ultimate Hunt I delved into a study of what makes God – God. The more I studied the attributes of God the more I realized that with our finite minds we cannot begin to really understand the depth and breadth of the many qualities that create His magnificence.
Today let’s explore just one of his attributes – His goodness. Scripture tells us that
“You are forgiving and good, O Lord, abounding in love to all who call to you”. Ps. 86:5 Much like any caring parent, God takes delight in providing gifts to His children. Romans 8:28 states, “All things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” Jim—you might want to add the translation here—it’s not King James.
What is the goodness of God? Easton’s Dictionary tells us that Goodness is a perfection of God’s character which He exercises towards His creatures according to their various circumstances and relations (Ps. 145We8, 9; 103:8; 1 John 4:8). Viewed generally, it is benevolence; as exercised with respect to the miseries of his creatures it is mercy, pity, compassion, and in the case of impenitent sinners, long-suffering patience; as exercised in communicating favor on the unworthy, it is grace. “God’s goodness appears in two things: giving and forgiving.”
As we seek to identify with God and become like Him, our character 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.” The Psalmist said, “You are good, and what You do is good; teach me Your decrees.” I see four things that will help us apply and embrace His character into our lives.
God’s Goodness Supplies Temporal Wants – Job, money, health, family
“And yet He left not himself without witness, in that he did good and gave you from heaven rains and fruitful seasons, filling your hearts with food and gladness.” Acts 14:17
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 and goodness.
“Or did you think that because he’s such a nice God, he’d let you off the hook? Better think this one through from the beginning. God is kind, but he’s not soft. In kindness he takes us firmly by the hand and leads us into a radical life-change.” Romans 2:4 The Message
God’s Goodness Is Expressed in His Forgiveness
Grace – Amazing Grace how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me.
“For a multitude of the people …., yet did they eat the Passover otherwise than it is written. For Hezekiah had prayed for them, saying, The good Jehovah pardon every one.” 2 Chronicles 30:18
His Goodness allows us to access His kingdom. His goodness provided a Savior.
“Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him.” Psalm 34:8
My friend aren‘t you glad we are called and encouraged to be like Him “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.” 2 Peter 1:3
None of us will ever 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. “And let us not be weary in well-doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” Galatians 6:9
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 we need to encourage one another.
Personal Application: As we experience and better understand the goodness of God how can we better apply this to our daily living? How does the goodness of God impact your thankfulness for His grace and provisions? What can you do to show your gratitude for His goodness in your life? Promise yourself (and God) that you will do one thing (at least) this week to demonstrate your gratitude.
Jim E. Grassi, D. Min.