The more one thinks about the goodness of God, the more questions tend to pop up in one’s mind. Last week, we said even amid all the evil in the world, our God remains a good God. How do we know this? Because the Bible tells us so. Yes, most of the things we know about God is what the Bible tells us. Then there are those things that the Spirit of God living in us also tells us. God is good. We cannot imagine a supreme being that is not good. The very idea of a supreme being tells us He must be good, and He must be good all the time, otherwise He stops being the supreme being. Why? Because we know in our spirit that good always tops evil.
There is however another side to this story. And this is at it concerns us. We always tend to think that the goodness of God means He will do us – yes, me and you, a lot of good. We assume that the goodness of God means that He does a lot of good to us. The question that then pops in my mind is, is God good because He does good to us, or is God good because He is simply good? Is our God a God that does good things for us or is He just the good God? If the goodness of God is because He does good things for us, then what happens when the things that happen to us are not good. What happens to those of us who have lost loved ones? Does it mean God is not good with us? What happens to those who have been making requests of God and it looks like what they are asking is not manifesting? Does it mean God is not good to them? What happens to those people who get involved in car accidents? Can we say Good is not good? If the goodness of God is tied to an immediate outcome, then it is ultimately tied to perspectives. Those who perceive that God has done what is good for them will say God is good and those who perceive otherwise will say God is not good? Does the goodness of God depend on perspectives? Perspectives sometimes are also influenced by our state of mind or our mood. Should the goodness of God be tied to our moods?
I think of these things and I come to an understanding that the goodness of God is not about me and it is not about you. The goodness of God does not depend on what you get and what you do not get. The goodness of God is not about what happens to me. God is good because He is God. To everyone of us God is good. To those who have a lot of reason to praise Him, God is good. To those who are struggling because of issues and burdens, God is good. Our challenges will not stop God from being a good God. The bible tells us in Mark 10:18 that “No one is good—except God alone.” Only God is good. For us children of God, sometimes we do good things and sometimes we do bad things, but our God is always good. Psalm 119:68a captures the essence of God’s goodness when it says, “You are good, and what you do is good”. God is good and does good things, but it is not about me and it is not about you. If the goodness of God depends on you and me, then there will be a plurality of opinion. In Christendom, we do not argue about the goodness of God because we know that is what makes Him God.
Brothers and sisters, even while you are down in the valley of life, God remains as good as He is when you are on the mountain top. Our issues will not stop God from giving rain in its time and neither will it stop the sun from shining in the daytime. “He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous” (Matthew 5:43b). It does not matter what our station in life is, God remains good all the time. God’s goodness is not something we earn, it depends on God and God alone.
One last thing, we should know that we are not in a position to determined how good God has been to us. The goodness of God is not determined by some momentary affliction that we get. The bible tells us anyway that our light afflictions are but for a moment and they work for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory (2 Corinthians 4:17). So, we cannot judge the goodness of God from what is happening to us this moment. If what is happening to us is good may God be praised, if not may God still be praised. We must always remember, just as the word of God tells us, that we only know in part, the time will come when we shall know fully, but now, only God knows fully. So, my brothers and sisters, in good and bad times step out in faith, “for I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end” (Jeremiah 29:11). Hallelujah!
Pastor Simbo Odunaiya