Tuesday, December 02, 2014

The Goodness of God

And Jesus said to him, "Why do you call
Me good?  No one is good except God alone.
Luke 18:19

The goodness of God is goodness in its original and untainted form. Since God is impassable and immutable, then His goodness is unchanging and unaffected by anything outside of Himself. Therefore God is good in a complete sense, in an absolute sense, not in a relative sense.  His goodness is pure goodness, untainted, undefiled, unaffected, untempered, and without degrees. It permeates all that He is and all that He does, which is why the Psalmist declares that God is good and does good. Therefore, God's goodness is true goodness, the goodness by which all other goodness is measured, and goodness is defined in God Himself.

When men call each other good, we do it in a relative term, as compared to other men. What we see as goodness in men is the vestige of the image of God, as all men were created in the image of God (Genesis 2); and that image has been marred and defiled by sin, it has become compromised and disfigured. When what we call goodness in men is seen in the light of God and His true goodness, we see that what we call goodness is not really goodness at all, not goodness in its true sense, in its God likeness; but is a goodness of degree as compared to other men, as in contrast to what men would call bad or evil as related to the times or culture they live in.

When the Lord becomes our standard of goodness, our definition of goodness, as He should be, then how we use that term takes on a whole new meaning. All of a sudden we realize that we can't consider ourselves good in any way, and what we have called good in ourselves is not good at all; and we realize our dependence on this goodness as our ticket to heaven has been a false hope, a self-deceiving hope.

Because God is good, He came down and took upon Himself the mantle of man in the person of Christ. Christ as God and man was good, good in our stead, good in our place. His goodness has become our ticket to heaven, not for all men; but for all men who place their faith in Him and His vicarious life and death on their behalf.  He becomes the ticket to heaven for all who renounce their own goodness and by faith cling tenaciously to His goodness and receive it as their own.

My friends, don't compare yourselves to other men, to the rest of mankind, to determine your own goodness.  Compare yourselves to the only One who is truly good and see your goodness for the filthy and soiled rag that it is. Confess to God that your goodness is not good enough and that you will rely on it no longer, and by faith ask Him to cover you with the goodness of His Son, who was good in your place. And Christ, who took on the mantle of man, will place upon you the mantle of His goodness, and you will have the true ticket to heaven; and you will taste and see the goodness of God in His salvation of your very soul.

1 comment:

R+R said...

Wow, this is great. So encouraging, thank you Pastor.