Sandy asked a great question on my last post, and it bears repeating and addressing. Since God is the only good, Sandy wondered about the verses featuring a call to do good, like this one: “Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good” (Romans 12:21 KJV). What does it mean to overcome evil with good if God is the only good? The only answer I have for any of this is another question: What is the source for the good in my life?
What is the source of my ‘goodness?’ What is behind and beneath the ‘good’ in my life? What is the motive? A lovely woman who called Shulamite Ministries yesterday asked nearly the same question as Sandy, and as we talked, she used the word motive. And that word is apt here! The motive is the heart behind the ‘good’ word or deed. The motive reveals the source.
Human ‘goodness’ is sourced in the flesh, which is Satan. The true motive can be hidden from all but God, but in the end, He knows. And the ultimate fruit of human goodness is death. That’s all it can be.
God as Source is Life
God’s goodness, on the other hand, is life. He is the only source of life in all the universe, and He pours out His goodness and life on and through those who meet His requirements.
How great is the goodness You have stored up for those who fear You. You lavish it on those who come to You for protection, blessing them before the watching world.
Psalm 31:19 NLT
When God is the source of good in my life, when His goodness motivates my word or action, then that is the good that overcomes evil. That is the good that replies to those who hate me. It is the goodness of God alone that confounds my enemies.
I think that there’s considerably more on the subject of God’s goodness, but this is all I have at the moment. Just the question, “What’s the source of the goodness?” The Holy Spirit is faithful to show me when my focus is goodness instead of the Lord, and that’s usually when I stumble. When my eyes are where they should be, fixed on Jesus, then the Spirit takes care of everything else. Good thing, too, because this dumb sheep can’t handle anything!
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.
James 1:17 NKJV
Indeed, His goodness is completely other than…
And when it is through me that His goodness is being poured out, then I end up being a receiver just as much as the other guy to whom the goodness is being directed to…
Our “Father of lights” colours our world with such amazing beauty and life, one can hardly take it in…
I end up being a receiver just as much as the other guy … Sandy, this is brilliant!
What a beautiful way to express it, Sandy. Thank you
Yes, thank you for this enlightment!
You hit the nail, I think! When the source of my goodness is “me”, I am good for being loved, I am good for being honored, I am good because I want people to think I am good, … or simply for being left in peace or because I am afraid of being different. When the source of my goodness is God, whatever I do will automatically serve the other one; by understanding their real need, by having insight for them from the Spirit, by forgiving or even by a strong word of correction. The first is for nothing like… Read more »
Ahah! Yes, you both “hit the nail”. And the goodness of God is Jesus! His overwhelming love and goodness gave us Jesus.
So, literally, Jesus is the “Goodness of God”… and strange enough, while with us, He refused that label of “goodness”. It seems that “goodness” is the false way and the poisoned tree.
Love abounding to the hearers,