Only God Is Good

Crown in the sky

The truth that only God is good does not disqualify the goodness we could have inside as some purport. The truth that God is good defines the source of all goodness. We don’t have to be bread in order to share bread with someone who is hungry, we just need to have bread. We don’t have to be water to share water with someone who thirst, we just need to have water. We don’t have to be God to share goodness with another soul, we just need to have God in us.

There are many situation we encounter in life that calls for the goodness of God, however what is often applied in those situations is a counterfeit of good. This counterfeit is what we have been oriented through our senses to believe is good. There is a humanitarian spirit in the world that has an intent to do good but instead of looking to God it draws from an imagination  based in human feeling. In application, humanitarian efforts feel good but afterwards we find the power of the spirit unto life was not imparted. You can give someone bread and water so that there stomach is full but there soul can still be famished in what it needs  because life is of the spirit. Our flesh does need bread and water to be nourished but our souls needs the goodness that comes from the spirit of God to be nourished.

I have found in my own life when I have faced the depravity of man, there are times when my mind conjures a solution that would feel good to all but in the end would only serve as a sedative and not address the underlying need for the spirit of life that comes from God through His goodness. There are times when people need to feel the pain of a bad decision so that they will learn to change their thinking however when they are simply bailed out by the humanitarian spirit the learning is aborted. Often times the goodness of God does not appeal to the senses therefore it is not attractive and that is where faith is needed. We have to trust in the goodness of God even when we can’t sense the good. We have to learn to walk in the spirit by abasing the carnal and worldly instincts.

The mandates of Love for human behavior exceeds the rudimentary acts of being humane.  Loving involves complying with universal spiritual laws which is a lot different from just doing what you feel or just fulfilling basic human needs. It has somehow been forgotten that we are sojourners here in these bodies of flesh and that we are spiritual in origin. God is the source of all life, so if we are going to have life in order to minister life to others then God has to be our source. As good can be the enemy of the best, so is the good imagined by man often opposed to the goodness of God. The good ordained of God through His Word is best.

In Book of Matthew Chapter 19, there is an account of a man running up to Jesus calling him “Good Master” and inquiring what good he could do to inherit eternal life. Jesus replied, “Why do you call me good, for there is none good but one, that is God.”  Jesus instructed the man to keep the commandments to inherit eternal life. The man stated that he had kept the commandments from his youth and wanted to know if there was more he should do. Jesus replied, if you will be perfect (spiritually mature) go and sell all that you have and give the money to the poor and then come follow me. The scriptures tell us the man went away grieved because he had many possessions.  The man failed to see the “good” in what the “Good master” had advised. It is evident that the man had some preconceived notions about “good” that got checked.  We need to humble ourselves in order to source our solutions from the spirit of God which is one with His word. You can always check your “good” by how it lines up with Holy scripture inspired by the spirit of God.  

Here is 2 Timothy 3:16-18,

All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.

God is love, so everything He does is an expression of love but God’s love is not always received or acknowledged by man. Man is often like a rebellious child despising the standards, guidance, and correction handed down by their parents. If we truly want to be good and virtuous to benefit those we have affection and concern for then we have to lay our intent in the hands of God and except His love and guidance.

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The Music Maker

High contrast music instruments silhouette in circle shape. Vector file available. Stock Vector - 11859954

When you think of an instrument maker and how he crafts different instruments you will realize there are vastly different processes employed to produce each instrument. Take brass instruments, first the brass has to be extracted from the ground and then fired to extreme heat to be formed. Now look at wood winds, they have to be taken out of trees and be carved out with sharp tools and treated. Then we have drums and xylophones and harps and pianos, all with their unique processes. Take each instrument with its unique construction process and consider the differences in sound that they produce. Now look at your life and take a look at the experiences you have gone though and how that has impacted your unique voice, your unique perspective. God desires to make all of us unique instruments to be played harmoniously together to express His heart song. It is an inspirational song of love, beauty, and peace.

There is a scripture which says, “We know that all things work together for good to those who love the God and are the called according to His purpose.” We are all called to be instruments of God and He has begun our varied construction processes however those that love Him are the ones concerned about His purposes.  When we are concerned about His purposes we surrender our instruments to be tuned how he sees fit, whether that means tightening our strings further or loosening them a bit, whether that means we are fine the way we are or we need a few more holes drilled in us, whether that means we are formed as a tuba or a trombone. We have to trust that He is in control of the process. In the end some of us will give our sound when the hands of God seems to pound on us, some of us will give our sound as He plucks on our strings, and some of us when the Holy Spirit moves though us as a rushing wind.

What I have written here is just a metaphor to say ALL that you have been through in your life is being used to bring you to the knowledge that God has a purpose for your life and if you will trust Him and try to tune into His direction, He will bring a harmony into your life that vibrates with love, beauty, and peace.

The Fear of The Lord

Proverbs 1:7 says,

“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.” Psalm 110:10, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever.”

Proverbs 2:4-6 says,

 “If thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures; Then shalt thou understand the fear of the Lord, and find the knowledge of God. For the Lord giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.”

The fear of the Lord is the frame that holds the picture of God. You cannot begin to understand the first things of God until you have a frame of reference from which to approach His Gloriousness. Without the framing of the fear of the Lord you will lack the proper perspective to prioritize even the most miniscule things of God. It is easy for someone not understanding the fear of the Lord to forsake some detail of God as trivial not realizing it will tip the scale on the balance of their life. 1 Corinthians 1:25 says,

“The foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.”

The fear of the Lord teaches you your place in respect to the one by which all things are sustained. The whole of creation is the product of His brilliance and all things have purpose according to His design. This is why it is of vital importance to understand the correct order of things, to avoid vanity, perversion, and destruction. The Lord Jesus explains in John 14:6,

“I am the way, the truth, and the life.”

God is reality. Anything outside of God is mere deception and not real at all. To seek God is to seek life. When you are seeking God, you are seeking all things because He is the beginning and conclusion of all things that are real. When you have the right perspective from the fear of the Lord, you understand that the knowledge and wisdom of God is the key to enjoying creation to the fullest. Those unlearned in the fear of the Lord seek creation more than the creator and squander the intended blessings of creation. God made creation so good that even its misuse brings a small level of enjoyment. I say a small level because the shallow enjoyment experienced through unenlightened experimentation is nothing compared to the deep fulfillment experienced by those instructed in the fear of the Lord, who have humbled themselves to live according to the creators design. When true purpose is fulfilled the experience is optimized. The fulfillment of the soul is made possible by the enlightenment of the spirit. In order to save the world Jesus came to restore that light. The Book of John begins with a teaching on the fear of the Lord saying,

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.”

The fear of the Lord is the first illumination. Once you begin to understand creation after the fear of the Lord, then instruction can begin. There is no randomness about creation. Everything fits together according to specific design and function. There is definite order and relationship in creation. Creation tells us many things about the Creator because creation is an expression of the Creator. Creation is even reflective of the Creator. One could no more dismiss the relationship between a piece of art and the mind of an artist than creation from the mind of the Creator. Unfortunately, people who don’t understand the fear of the Lord make this mistake every day. Though creation is specific, ordered, and intentional many unenlightened people speak of the Almighty God as if He is actually many different things to many different people instead of someone specific, with an order, and distinctive. The problem here is that people define God as they see fit instead of humbling themselves to accept God’s definition of himself. The hidden motive of the rebellious and prideful is to allow room to define themselves instead of humbling themselves to conform to God’s definition of them. This is at the root of why people use anamorphic names like “the man upstairs” and “my higher power” to refer to their deity. I say their deity because in actuality they aren’t referring to the Almighty at all. They are referring to the deity in their mind that they have concocted that fits their way of living. People may not actively seek out forgers of metal and carvers of wood to custom design their deities any longer but people very much still form images in their mind of a God they are comfortable with and make that imagined image their deity. You can easily have in the same room a Mormon, a Klu Klux Klan,  a Homosexual, a Jehovah Witnesses, a Seventh day Adventist, a Catholic Priest, and a transvestite who all confess that they know God and serve him. This conundrum is due to an overall lack in understanding the fear of the Lord. The fear of the Lord teaches that you must be completely willing to humbly conform to the one true and living God instead of defaming the character, nature, and image of God to fit the needs of any one person or group. This is what Jesus spoke of when he said, “If any man will follow me, let him take up his cross.” It is also what Jesus is referring to when he says, “They that seek their life will lose it, and he that loses his life will find it.” He is trying to instruct them in the fear of the Lord. The fear of the Lord teaches that God is life and that we should seek our existence in Him for outside of God there is only death. Anything that opposes God opposes life and should be considered evil. Proverbs 8:13 says,

“The fear of the Lord is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate.”

Pride and arrogance should be hated because those characteristics support and strengthen self reliance instead of reliance on God.

Many people object to the view that we should fear a loving God and say that the bible is only referring to a reverential fear and not a since of terror. Rejecting the concept that we should actually fear God based on the idea that the word fear in the phrase the fear of the Lord was mistranslated is evil in root. Evil because it refuses to surrender its humanistic ideas of God even though God himself says we should dread opposing Him and scripture strongly supports that there is virtue in actually fearing God. It is very true that God is a loving God but it is also true that God will recompense evil. God hates evil and regularly destroys it. The Almighty God is terrible and fearful and not one to be played with or provoked. The Apostle Paul says in Hebrew 10:31,

“It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.”

In Hebrews chapter 10 Paul is trying to make sure that we do not forsake the fear of the Lord in this dispensation of amazing grace after the sacrifice of Christ. Paul is warning us not to take God for granted as if God is going to remit the sins we commit willingly after we know better. Jesus taught in Matthew 10,

“Fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”

This is New Testament teaching on the Fear of the Lord by God himself. Proverbs 16:6 says,

“By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil.”

Through the mercies of God truth is revealed. There is a lot of preparing of the heart that takes place by the hand of God before the truth is sown, much like a farmer prepares the earth for a crop he wants to harvest. The fear of the Lord restrains men from evil which keeps them alive while the truth takes root and the iniquity is purged. It is the fear of the Lord that makes man teachable. It is my hope that the teachings of this book would build upon your foundation of the fear of the Lord toward a deeper revelation of God and your life in Him.