Gospel Gazette Online
Volume 22 Number 3 March 2020
Page 13

The Goodness of God

Samuel Osei Young

Introduction

One of the most encouraging and challenging topics of the Bible to study is “The Goodness of God.” When we know that God is good, we can and must live with love and kindness in our hearts toward others. As Christians, we are to be good and to do good because God is good. What does it mean to say that God is good? Let us see what the Bible has to say on this topic.

Matthew 19:16-17 tells us of a conversation Jesus had with a rich ruler. “Now behold, one came and said to Him, ‘Good Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?’ So He said to him,  ‘Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments’” (NKJV).

The Greek word used here and elsewhere in the New Testament for “good” is agathos. It means “beneficial in its effect, being good in its character or constitution.” No human being can make a claim to being wholly good in character. As Romans 3:10-12 states, “As it is written: ‘There is none righteous, no, not one; There is none who understands; There is none who seeks after God. They have all turned aside; They have together become unprofitable; There is none who does good, no, not one.’”

Only God is wholly good—God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. Concerning Himself, Jesus said, “‘I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep‘” (John 10:11). Jesus is good, just as God the Father is good. We see the goodness of God made manifest in the life of Jesus. As Acts 10:38 tells us, “…Jesus of Nazareth…went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.” On one occasion, after Jesus healed the deaf man, the crowd gave the following response. “And they were astonished beyond measure, saying, ‘He has done all things well. He makes both the deaf to hear and the mute to speak’” (Mark 7:37). As God in the flesh, Jesus demonstrated the goodness of God in everything He did. In Jesus, we see the goodness of God in a living person! What does the goodness of God look like, and what does it mean for us?

The Goodness of God Is Merciful

God, in His goodness, is merciful. Because He is merciful, He has made salvation possible through the blood of His Son, Jesus. This salvation is available to all who are willing to embrace it in obedient faith.

The Goodness of God Provides Help

Jesus demonstrated this characteristic of God as He time and time again responded to cries for help by healing people of their diseases (Matthew 15:25-28; Mark 9:20-27). God has promised to help us in time of need if we are willing to come to Him in faith and are ready to receive what He has to offer.

The Goodness of God Gives Strength

God provides strength and guidance to those who recognize their need for Him. Too many people rely on their own strength and their own wisdom as they go through life. They end up failing miserably. As Jesus said in Matthew 5:3, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Heaven is reserved for those who recognize their need for God and are willing to receive His help.

The Goodness of God Offers Hope

In His goodness, God is a giver—a giver of hope and a giver of all that is good. In fact, every good gift comes from God (James 1:17; Matthew 7:7-11).

Responding to the Goodness of God

How should we respond to the goodness of God? The following five courses of action are given to us in the Bible.

Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the Lord, The Creator of the ends of the earth, Neither faints nor is weary. His understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the weak, And to those who have no might He increases strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, And the young men shall utterly fall, But those who wait on the Lord Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:28-31)

Conclusion

God is good! Let us trust in His goodness and follow His good instructions. Let us allow His goodness to mold us and to make us more like Him every day! “The Lord is gracious and full of compassion, Slow to anger and great in mercy. The Lord is good to all, And His tender mercies are over all His works” (Psalm 145:8-9).


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