Who is God? - Part 2 - God is Good

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Many have tried to answer this question and have relied on the words of men and their religions to find the answer. Many have turned to the idea that God is whatever we want him to be, or the sum of all good. Some also argue that God is a figment of our imagination, created only for the purpose of blaming someone or something for the good, the bad, and the unexplainable.
But for those of us who have come to a life-changing and life-saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, we know that God is more than just a myth or legend. We know that God is not revealed through the teachings of Buddha, Allah, Confucius, the Pope, Aristotle, or New Age incantations or affirmations. Rather, we believe that God is revealed through the infallible and divinely inspired teachings of the Bible.
However, even as Christians who know the Bible and claim to live our life centered around its teachings, we complacently rely on our imaginations or the teachings of our Christian parents or leaders to help us from our opinion of who God is. I’m not saying that what you’ve learned from your parents or pastors is incorrect. What I am saying is the most intimate relationships are developed from firsthand accounts and so when we encounter Jesus firsthand by learning about Him directly from His Word, we begin to develop an intimacy with Him that nothing or no one else can produce.
Admittedly, I’ve also struggled with complacently accepting a sermon for my knowledge of Jesus. But after encountering Jesus firsthand through the intimate moments spent meditating on His Word, I’ve learned that intimacy with Jesus cannot be taught, but rather experienced. And it is through our time studying the Word of God, meditating on His Word, and through prayer that we find ourselves arriving at the answer to the infamous question Who is God?
To help facilitate this intimacy and shed light on truths I’ve encountered during my own time spent in God’s Word and in the solitude of prayer and meditation, I’ve decided to dedicate a devotional series to the character of God, both those which are communicable and incommunicable.
I pray that as you listen and / or read each devotional in this series you find yourself closer to God and more intimately familiar with who He is.

Link to Last Week's Devo - Who is God? - Part 1 - A Loving God – SimplyHealthyHome (shopsimplyhealthyhome.com)

God is Good

We've often heard the phrase "God is Good", but "good" can mean a variety of different things to a variety of different people. Good can imply generous, altruistic, fair, kind, etc. 

Today's devo is a look into what the Bible tells us about God's goodness.

When we talk about a good, we refer to something that leads to the mental, physical, or spiritual betterment of the one experiencing that good. There has been much philosophical debate about what the greatest good is. Aristotle argues that the greatest good is the happiness found in living in accordance with virtue, while others like John Stuart Miller view the greatest good as that which brings most utility to society. 

However, we see an entirely unique and distinct characteristic of the greatest good in Mark 10:18

"So Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. " Mark 10:18 NKJV

The passage in Mark 10:18 shows us that the goodness is a characteristic of God alone. But, why? Why is it that only God can be good, when we've experienced firsthand the kindness and generosity of our friends, family members, or even strangers?

To answer this question, we must first answer the question "Why do we say that something is "good"? We often refer to objects such as our house, car, clothes, health, food, kids, spouse, friends, or job as being "good". But what we really mean by calling these things good is that they contribute to our betterment on a physical, mental, and / or spiritual level in some way. 

And so, when we say that God is good, we are referring to God's bestowment of a good, which in turn leads to our betterment. His goodness can be experienced by the blessings mentioned above, but also through non-material blessings such as the peace, joy, and hope that comes from knowing Him. 

It is God's nature to be good. That is, it is God's nature to better what is around Him, and it is only God that can exist in this way because only God is completely self-sufficient and holy. There is never a time when God needs a good for His own betterment, because He already has everything He needs. And God's goodness will never fail, but God is unchanging, and perfect in love, patience, and kindness. 

The Qualities of God's Goodness

1. God's goodness always points back to Him. 

God's goodness exists to better that which is around Him, but also to point those who receive and witness His goodness back to Him. 

God's goodness is not self-seeking, but rather it is a natural indicator of the glory, love, and unfailing generosity of our God. When we see the goodness of God in our day to day lives, we are reminded that it is God in all His power, kindness, and majesty that blesses us with the things we don't deserve. 

It His goodness that sustains us, protects us, heals us, and fulfills us. 

"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. Of His own will He brought us forth by the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures." James 1:17-18 NKJV

2. God's goodness never changes. 

God's goodness never changes.

Unlike the generosity and benevolence of humans, God's goodness is not subject to time, emotions, mental and physical capacity, or circumstance. His goodness exists outside of these boundaries.

God is good ALL the time, because God, according to His nature, always betters that which exists around Him. 

"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. Of His own will He brought us forth by the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures." James 1:17-18 NKJV

3. Only the goodness of God can fill our souls.

God's goodness is more than just the seen. It is also the unseen. God's goodness is the peace, joy, and hope that bring us purpose and fulfillment. 

When we put our faith in Jesus Christ, we gain access to the greatest hope, a hope that never changes or diminishes. This hope is not in our ability, but rather in the ability of an all-knowing, all-powerful, and unchanging Savior that promises to love us, take care of us, and make a way for us to live eternally in paradise. 

It is the goodness of God, made manifest through the bestowment of His Son Jesus Christ that fills every void of the soul and brings our soul to a place of harmony with its lover and Creator. 

"Oh, that men would give thanks to the Lord for His goodness,
And for His wonderful works to the children of men! For He satisfies the longing soul, And fills the hungry soul with goodness." Psalm 107:8-9 NKJV

To Summarize

God is good. He is good because He is the only person that gives in a way that leaves our soul feeling satisfied. He is good because it is in His nature to better all that is around Him. He is good because it is only He that can give endlessly without needing to be given anything in return. 

God is good is more than just a phrase to describe a benevolent God.

God is good is the reality we live and experience every day.

God is good is the beauty of the rising and setting sun that revives and rests our souls.

God is good is the joy and comfort found in the priceless moments shared amongst friends and family.

God is good is our ability to rise out of bed each morning, walk to our kitchen table, and run on the treadmill or nature trail.

God is good is our ability to reason and plan.

God is good is our ability to love in a way that reflects Christ's selfless and unconditional love for us. 

And the qualities of God's love - that it always points back to Him, that it is never fails, and that it is the only good that can satisfy our soul - that shines through each of these goods so many of us are blessed with day to day. 

I Hope You Have a Blessed Week, and Don't Forget to Stay Tuned in for Next Week's Devotional!

Your Sister in Christ, Julia

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