What do we have that won’t wear out, break, die, go out of style, or ever need repair? We can rejoice and give thanks, because our life and our future are tied to the goodness of our Eternal Father, the creator of the heavens and maker of our world. Not only is God good; he is good to us. But more than just being good, he is loving and his love will not wear out, grow old, fade away, or need repair.
So, today, we will continue our exploration of the depths of Psalm 65. We will try to ponder the questions which ought to be utmost on every person’s mind.
As I am pondering the Promises of God …
As I am pondering the Goodness of God,
Do I Recognize the Goodness of God?
Where Do I Look to Recognize the Goodness of God?
Psalm 65:1- 4 HCSB
God’s Care for the Earth
1 Praise is rightfully Yours,[a]
God, in Zion;
vows to You will be fulfilled.
2 All humanity will come to You,
the One who hears prayer.
3 Iniquities overwhelm me;
only You can atone for[b] our rebellions.
4 How happy is the one You choose
and bring near to live in Your courts!
We will be satisfied with the goodness of Your house,
the holiness of Your temple.[c]
The Word of God for the Children of God. In Excelsis Deo! Alleluia! Amen.
The Psalmist attributed as David is saying he owes God everything because it is God who made him who he is. It is because of forgiveness he is allowed to come into the glorious courts of the divine temple of God in heaven. He can actually live in the presence of the eternal God who rules the earth. In his majesty, God still hears the prayers of those who serve him and comes to their aid when in need. Thus God deserves his praise, both in songs and in his devotion of life.
Since we all were once dead in sin, helpless and hopeless on and in our own worldly devices, but now have been forgiven by the blood of Jesus, we owe God all we are today. As his children we come to him in prayer and know he hears us and answers our needs according to his divine will. None of our cares are ever too small to merit his attention or too large that he cannot take care of them.
God our Father deserves our praise and our worship as we honor him both in songs and in the way we live our lives for him. It is only by His grace that we live in his courts and have him live in us (John 14:23, Ephesians 2:8-10). We are to be anxious for nothing but pray about all things because the Lord is near and his indescribable, undeniable goodness and peace will fill our hearts in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:4-9, 19,20)
What our challenge is in 2021 is we need to see that God blesses us abundantly in so many various ways. From Psalm 65, David tries to remind us of how much God gives to the people of the earth. God blesses us through material things. So, today, we must consider that the things we have are a blessing from God. God has set the earth up in such a way that we can be prosperous while we live here.
Consider where we are today. There are other planets, like Mars and the Sun, in our own solar system unable to any sustain life, and are desolate wastelands. How amazing we are placed on this planet earth that not only has the ability to sustain life, but is able to give great abundance to the people who live on it.
The earth, challenged as it is by the machinations of man, continues to remain and be productive, even though people may think that we are destroying it. God has not made a delicate earth, but has created a planet that could be useful for people with their primitive technology in 2000 B.C. as it could in our 2021 A.D.
Second, God has given us the beautiful things that we see in creation to know that he exists. We are able to look at the mountains and the waves and know that there is power in this world and someone put these things in motion for us.
The earth is accomplishing God’s purpose. God’s love is so great that these things were placed here so we would know that there is a powerful Creator who answers our prayers. If God can set these things in motion by His own divine will and accomplish His purpose, how much more can God do for those that He loves so much that He created all of this for us and gave up His Son for us.
Finally, we see God’s blessings through the grace he has offered to all of humanity. Our iniquities continue to prevail against us. We are not living the way we should. All of us sin and are falling short of the holiness and glory of God. But God, rather than issue wrath against us, made atonement for our sins.
God is merciful and covers over the sins we have committed. But he must remain just. Just as much as a judge can be merciful, he must also be fair, just, and keep to the requirements of the law. To be able to show us mercy, a price had to paid. The price was the sacrifice of His only Son. This would allow God to be just by covering our sins. This atonement is found in the blood of Christ.
But this forgiveness is not automatically applied. We are required to come in contact with the blood of Christ through repentance and immersion in water.
Romans 6:4 HCSB 4 Therefore we were buried with Him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too may walk in a new way[a] of life.
We can become UNITED as the Body of Christ, His Church in the world, in the sight of God if we will simply choose to come to Jesus and serve Him today.
Ephesians 4:1-6 HCSB
Unity and Diversity in the Body of Christ
4 Therefore I, the prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk worthy of the calling you have received, 2 with all humility and gentleness, with patience, accepting[a] one another in love, 3 diligently keeping the unity of the Spirit with the peace that binds us. 4 There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to one hope[b] at your calling— 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 one God and Father of all, who is above all and through all and in all.
Except, what is all of this “goodness of God” supposed to look like? How are we to recognize this Goodness of our Father God and where are we to recognize it?
Does the Bible Talk about the Goodness of God?
Read, diligently study, pray through the entirety of Psalm 107, and Psalm 136.
The Apostle James wrote, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change” (James 1:17 ESV). God’s goodness is an attribute of His unchanging character.
“God is light,” 1 John 1:5 says, “in him there is no darkness at all.” There is no dark side to God. He does allow us to endure the consequences of disobedience and the pain and suffering of the fallen world we live in to affect us. But God cannot be anything but who He is, and He is good. In His goodness, God chose to love and save humanity through Jesus Christ (John 3:16-17).
Christ-followers are described as those recognized by light. “But whoever does what is true comes to the light,” Jesus spoke, “so it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.” (John 3:19-20 ESV).
In the King James Version of the Bible, there are forty eight (48) references to the word “goodness.” How many can you find and How many do you know?
Whatever version or translation of the Bible you use or is available to you, how many references to the word “goodness” can you find, learn, study, pray over?
What about outside the Bible if you have no Bible to read or none is available?
What about recognizing the Goodness of God from what you can observe daily?
10 Ways to Recognize the Goodness of God Daily:
Recognize God’s Goodness in Nature
Genesis 1:31 KJV
31 And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.
God, our Creator, spoke the world into existence. On the sixth day, He proclaimed it, very good. Not just good as He labeled the other days of creation before but very good. God is unchanging, so if He proclaimed creation very good then, it remains very good now. God is evident in His creation.
In every season, and every location across the globe, God is intentional in every note of every symphony of nature and His goodness purposefully surrounds us with magnificent reminders of His faithfulness and hope and love, both as large and expansive as a sunrise sky and as small and intricate as a blooming flower.
Recognize God’s Goodness in People
Romans 8:26-28 AKJV
26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. 27 And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. 28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
We were created in God’s image to glorify Him. He has good plans for us. Those, in Christ, are “called according to his purpose.” His purposes draw us, and others, closer to Him. Our mission on this earth is to share the hope we have in Jesus Christ through the gospel. “Love God, and love your neighbor,” are the most important commands (Matthew 22:34-40, Mark 12:28-34).
The people in our lives are purposefully placed. We were not meant to be alone. (Genesis 2:18-22) The people in our lives are part of God’s purpose for our lives. Some are meant to breathe life and faith and hope and love into our lives, and others we are meant to share the message of faith, hope and love of Jesus with. All things working together for good, conforms us to the image of Jesus Christ.
Recognize God’s Goodness in Answered Prayers
Psalm 34:8-10 AKJV
8 O taste and see that the Lord is good:
blessed is the man that trusteth in him.
9 O fear the Lord, ye his saints:
for there is no want to them that fear him.
10 The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger:
but they that seek the Lord shall not want any good thing.
Answered prayer reminds us of God’s goodness. King David wrote Psalm 34 in reference to a perilous situation he found himself in. His point of view is very critical, because God’s goodness can be found not only when His blessings are obvious, but also when the bottom falls completely out. Good people will suffer and through that suffering, God remains good. God hears our prayers, and He is moved by the prayers of the righteous.
Recognize God’s Goodness in the Truth of His Word
1 Timothy 4:4-5 AKJV
4 For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving: 5 for it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.
Daily Prayer and time in God’s Word are crucial if we are to witness and experience the goodness of God. We can pour out our praise and problems, lift our anxiety up to God, and confess our sins daily.
These are all privileges of living under the New Covenant forged by the blood of Christ. Christ is the living Word of God. The Apostle John wrote, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1-5). When we seek His Light from our darkness with all of our hearts, God promises we will find Him. His goodness abounds in the Truth of His Word.
Recognize God’s Goodness in His Blessings
Psalm 31:19-20 AKJV
19 Oh how great is thy goodness,
which thou hast laid up for them that fear thee;
which thou hast wrought for them that trust in thee before the sons of men!
20 Thou shalt hide them in the secret of thy presence from the pride of man:
thou shalt keep them secretly in a pavilion from the strife of tongues.
When we leave our lives in the hands of our good God, we will see the good things God has for us. When we become distracted by idols (anything holding our attention more than God), it’s difficult for us to recognize the good things God has for us, as if trading them in for something that has less value. “Fear seems to drive us away from God and taking refuge in God seems to draw into the life of His Son Jesus and to the intercession of the Holy Spirit. (Psalm 91)
We can choose to distrust everything our eyes see. We can also choose to trust more the goodness of God, counting the blessings He has littered our lives with.
Recognize God’s Goodness in His Providence/Provision
Jeremiah 29:10-14 AKJV
10 For thus saith the Lord, That after seventy years be accomplished at Babylon I will visit you, and perform my good word toward you, in causing you to return to this place. 11 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. 12 Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you. 13 And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart. 14 And I will be found of you, saith the Lord: and I will turn away your captivity, and I will gather you from all the nations, and from all the places whither I have driven you, saith the Lord; and I will bring you again into the place whence I caused you to be carried away captive.
How do we observe and testify to the providence and provision of God daily? In the way He sustains us each day. He is faithful to meet our physical needs and love us through the people He’s placed around us.
Jesus, in His Sermon on the Mount, instructed us not to worry. But often, we toil over the next day before this one is done. The fact we are alive today is proof God will be in our tomorrow. He knows the number of our days (Psalm 103:13-16). Even when life is hard, we can trust God to sustain us. God uses the hard things in life to strengthen us and make us more like Him. We can trust God’s providence even if His provision does not exactly align with our own desires.
Recognize God’s Goodness in Your Breath (Another Day of Life)
James 1:16-18 AKJV
16 Do not err, my beloved brethren. 17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. 18 Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.
Every breath is a gift from God. Another day of life, full of His providence and blessing, ought to help us recognize God, daily. Often, we take the simple joy of breathing for granted. God, in His goodness, knows every hair on our heads.
At any given time, that number can change. Daily, we lose strands here and there, sometimes unnoticed. But not to our good God. He notices. He is 100% everywhere and all-knowing, and cares for us deeply enough to know the most finite details of our days. Each day, each breath, is evidence of our good God.
Recognize God’s Goodness in His Forgiveness
1 John 1:7-9 AKJV
7 but if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. 8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
Forgiveness reveals God’s goodness, daily. Forgiveness was birthed by our good God, who didn’t have to forgive humanity for breaking His laws.
Daily, we come to God for forgiveness, because we all fall short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:21-23) In Christ, we are able to come to our good God and we can freely confess unto our Father in Heaven our sins. In His goodness and through the sacrifice of His Son, we are able to embrace the gift of forgiveness He has given to us access, and thus we forgive others as He has done for us.
Recognize God’s Goodness in Acts of Kindness
Psalm 145:5-9 AKJV
5 I will speak of the glorious honour of thy majesty,
and of thy wondrous works.
6 And men shall speak of the might of thy terrible acts:
and I will declare thy greatness.
7 They shall abundantly utter the memory of thy great goodness,
and shall sing of thy righteousness.
8 The Lord is gracious, and full of compassion;
slow to anger, and of great mercy.
9 The Lord is good to all:
and his tender mercies are over all his works.
Everyday random and planned acts of kindness are proof of God’s goodness. We are placed, purposefully, in the pathways of each other’s lives. Nothing good ever happens apart from the Father. Every good work exists because of Him. He makes good of all things, even those intended to harm us. How much more can He take any random act of kindness, turn it into 100% blessing (Acts 3:1-10)?
Recognize God’s Goodness at the Cross
John 3:16-17 AKJV
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
In single the greatest act of love, God sent His one and only Son, Jesus Christ, the promised Messiah of the Old Testament, to earth. Fully God and fully man, Jesus came to earth to die a sacrificial death on the cross by crucifixion. He was innocent, yet died a criminal’s death, intentionally for us, to carry out the will of His Father, only He was capable of fulfilling. The cross is a daily reminder of the indescribable, immeasurable, undeniable, unchangeable goodness of God.
I fervently pray whoever comes to read these words, discovers His goodness. But not only discovers His goodness, but is empowered by those discoveries.
In the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, Let us now Pray,
God, our Father, companion and guide, we would be lost without your direction— wanderers in wildernesses of our own making. We praise you for dealing so graciously with your people in the past, when you guided them to freedom and a promised new life. We are heirs of that promise fulfilled in Jesus, our Redeemer.
Through him, you have established for us a permanent direction for our lives and as we dwell in him, our lives are blessed with fruitfulness. Holy God, may this time of worship be a joyful response of praise and thanksgiving for all that goodness you have shown, acts of hope you have done for all, for all that you are doing, and for all that you will continue to do for us and all people through the power of the Holy Spirit and in the name of Jesus. Alleluia! Alleluia! Amen.