Inexhaustible Goodness

Just when I think I have a grasp on who God is, I lose it.
When I rest in what I think I know of Him, I become weary.
If I depend on words that i have learned of His kingdom and glory, I soon realize that like Peter, on the mount of transfiguration, there is nothing I can do for Him.

In a staggering momentum I try to keep up with His thoughts and ways, until the years of providence show me there is no holding, resting, or keeping up with Jehovah, the God who created and maintains the heavens and the earth. Words cannot convey the magnitude of His being and working. Knowledge is only the beckoning that draws us to Him, so that we can live in wonder and awe of His magnificent glory as God, the Creator and Redeemer of mankind.

Even with all that His Word says, we can never get our hearts and minds around His inexhaustible goodness.

His Goodness in the Old Testament
Strong’s concordance for goodness in Hebrew translates:
2617a chased ~ lovingkindness
2896b tob ~ a good thing, benefit, welfare
2898 tub ~ good things, goods
Think of a tub overflowing with all that our heavenly Father desires to give His children ~ better still, our languishing in His goodness. 

When we study Psalm 107, we see that of the nation of Israel, God’s chosen people, not many knew Him, yet He continued to bless them and provide for them.

In His goodness, He gave instructions; through His law, He promised blessings and curses similar to those He gave Adam and Eve, but written so that there would be no doubt as to their meanings and consequences. In rebellion, without His counsel, they were afflicted; he therefore brought down their heart with labour; they fell and there was none to help (vs. 12).

Then, they cried unto the Lord in their trouble, and he saved them out of their distresses (6,13,19,28).

Four times in this Psalm, we read of their rebellion, crying out to God, and His saving them. Each of these is followed by the same statement.

“Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men!” (8,15,21,31).

We must be grateful that His goodness does not depend on us, but only on Him. We do not know of His goodness except through our needs, and in those needs He pours out an abundance of His goodness to us, never-ending because He is always good.

His goodness is a facet of His glory; what we cannot see visibly, we see spiritually in His provisions to us as His children, both physical and spiritual.

In Exodus 34:6, Moses asked God to reveal His glory to him, 

“And the Lord passed by before him, and proclaimed, The Lord, The Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth,”

 He promises His goodness to those who fear and trust in Him (Psalm 31:19).

“I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.” Psalm 27:13
“The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.” Psalm 33:5
“Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.” Psalm 23:6

His Goodness in the New Testament
Goodness
in Greek translates:
2570 kilos ~ beautiful, good
19 agathosune ~ virtue, beneficence

In Romans 2:4, we read that His goodness leads us to repentance.

“Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?” Romans 2:4

Goodness is listed as a fruit of the Spirit, the nature and disposition of Christ, working in and through us by His Spirit.
Goodness is related to God’s love, the first of the fruit listed in Galatians 5:22.

His desire for us is that we bear His image, a work that only He can reveal through the power of His Holy Spirit in us. We can read and believe that we are HIs children through a spiritual birth, but we can never on our own bring this to pass. Read and try, as we might, we soon learn that all of life is a mystery that can never be explained here and now. In faith, we continue to seek His kingdom and HIs righteousness, while He is doing His Holy work in us.

“He is bountiful and gracious, ready to do them good, and He is the felicitating end, or the blessedness of the soul.  The goodness of God to His creatures, according to different respects to them, has its different and various appellations.  As it is freely bestowed, it is grace; as it respects them as needy, it is bounty; as it respects them in misery, it is mercy and compassion; as it respects them as provoking, so it is patience; as it intends their good, it is love; as it answers both their necessities and capacities, it is all-sufficiency. All these–His bounty, mercy, compassion, patience, love, and all- sufficiency–are, in a word, His goodness; and goodness calls for love.”  HEAVEN OPENED ~ The Riches of God’s Covenant  Richard Alleine

Our eternal God and heavenly Father; we thank you for this great goodness revealed to us and in us by your Holy Spirit. We praise you for the overwhelming love revealed in and through Jesus Christ, your Son. Let us not settle for less that the goodness you promise, even though it is more than we can comprehend, We long for, pray and wait for you to work it in us. Let us not lose our hope in Christ, nor grow weary, but keep us close and grow us in grace and the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. In His name we pray.  Amen.
Fran

Psalm 25:4-5  Show Me Thy Ways      Scripture Tunes

The Image of Contentment

Let’s remember the main points from this series on Contentment.

  1. Divine Contentment is supernatural, possible only for God’s people.
  2. It is the result of a relationship between God our heavenly Father and His children.
  3. He will teach us and show us what He is doing in us.

In this post we want to meditate on God’s Word and what we learn from Him, concerning His image and how He works His image in us as His children. He is content with His own work in and through us. Therefore, we must learn to be content with what He is doing.

From the beginning He saw that everything He had made was “good.”

“And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness:” Genesis 1:26a

He is still working all things for our good and conforming us to the image of His Son.

“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren;”
Romans 8:28-29

We are being transformed to the image of the Lord as we continue to look to Him for all things.

“And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.”
2 Corinthians 3:182-corinthians-3-18-orange-copy

The apostle John and the Psalmist speak of the future when we will see God in all His glory.

“Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not appeared as yet what we will be. We know that when He appears, we will be like Him, because we will see Him just as He is.”
1 John 3:2

“As for me, I shall behold your face in righteousness; when I awake, I shall be satisfied with your likeness.” Psalm 17:15

While we wait for His second coming we can be content in our role as a servant, even as He served while He was here.

It is enough for the disciple that he be as his master, and the servant as his lord.
Matthew 10:25

Dear Father, You have created us in your image, and given us new hearts so as to fill us with your Spirit and to conform us to the image of your Son. It is enough for us to be like our Master, and to one day behold your face in righteousness and be satisfied with your likeness. Make us content in the work you are doing in us now, by your grace and for your glory. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
Image

Have You Seen Jesus?

“He who has seen me has seen the Father.”
John 14:9

Why is it so important that we see Jesus as God? The Father has made it so. The Book of Hebrews, when studied in depth, opens our eyes to see Jesus as “the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature ~ the image of the invisible God, through whom the world was made ~ all things were created through him and for him.” (Hebrews 1:2-3; Colossians 1:15-16)

We are taught in the first chapter of Hebrews that “He upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high.” How do we see Him there?

“We have such a high priest, holy, innocent,
unstained, separated from sinners,
and exalted above the heavens,

one who is seated at the right hand
of the throne of the Majesty in heaven,
a minister in the holy places,
where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf,
Hebrews 7:26   8:1

He is there, having fulfilled all the law of righteousness on our behalf so that He can “save to the uttermost all who come to God through Him.”

“Where we who have fled for refuge
might have strong encouragement
to hold fast to the hope set before us.
We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul.
Hebrews 5:18-19; 6:20

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In this hope and assurance, we see Him as our life here and forever.

“And we all, with unveiled face,
beholding the glory of the Lord,
are being transformed into the same image
from one degree of glory to another.”
2 Corinthians 3:18

All this is from God, who through Christ
reconciled us to himself
and gave us the ministry of reconciliation.”
2 Corinthians 5:16-19

What should be our response?

Music:  Come Christians Join to Sing

Come, Christians, join to sing
Alleluia! Amen!
Loud praise to Christ our King;
Alleluia! Amen!
Let all, with heart and voice,
Before His throne rejoice;
Praise is His gracious choice.
Alleluia! Amen!

Come, lift your hearts on high,
Alleluia! Amen!
Let praises fill the sky;
Alleluia! Amen!
He is our Guide and Friend;
To us He’ll condescend;
His love shall never end.
Alleluia! Amen!

Praise yet our Christ again,
Alleluia! Amen!
Life shall not end the strain;
Alleluia! Amen!
On heaven’s blissful shore,
His goodness we’ll adore,
Singing forevermore,
“Alleluia! Amen!”
 Christian H. Bateman (1843)

GOD and Sin ~ A Sheep’s View

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There is no greater impact on the world than these two three-letter words; names that have rung out over the universe since the creation. Yet, most of God’s creatures have no true understanding of who He is. Each of us conjures up in our own minds what we imagine GOD to be; and when we have a false image of Him we, then by own nature, Sin against Him.

As, by His goodness, mercy and grace He has been teaching me who He is, this is an acrostic to help me remember in my old age. This is not to simplify who He is, but in these three words I can see an expansion of all His attributes. We have but to sink into His word, discover, and be raised to a new awareness of what He wants us to know about Him.   As we study and meditate on His Glory, Order, and Dominion we will see Sin in its true light also. While this may become one of the series of Little Books about the Magnitude of God, I use here only a fraction of references for this short treatise.

As horrendous is the sin of man, greater is GOD in His glory, order, and dominion over man and sin.

 GOD
Glory   Order   Dominion

 Glory

            “And the sight of the glory of the Lord was like devouring fire on the top of the mount in the eyes of the children of Israel.” Exodus 24:17

         “And there I will meet with the children of Israel, and the tabernacle shall be sanctified by my glory.” Exodus 29:43

         “And Moses and Aaron went from the presence of the assembly unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, and they fell upon their faces: and the glory of the Lord appeared unto them.” Numbers 20:6

         “But as truly as I live, all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the Lord.” Numbers 14:21

For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.” Matthew 6:13

          “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.”   Revelation 4:11

(In this first page in my search ~ from Exodus 16:7 to Joshua 7:19 ~ we find twenty-two references to His glory.)

https://www.biblegateway.com/quicksearch/?quicksearch=glory&qs_version=KJV

Order

            “God hath made with me an everlasting covenant, ordered in all things, and sure: for this is all my salvation, and all my desire.” 2 Samuel 23;5

            “The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way.” Psalm 37:23

 “Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me.” Psalm 119:133

           “These things hast thou done, and I kept silence; thou thoughtest that I was altogether such an one as thyself: but I will reprove thee, and set them in order before thine eyes.” Psalm 50:21

           “And who, as I, shall call, and shall declare it, and set it in order for me, since I appointed the ancient people? and the things that are coming, and shall come, let them shew unto them.” Isaiah 44:7

           “For because ye did it not at the first, the Lord our God made a breach upon us, for that we sought him not after the due order.” 1 Chronicles 15:13

            “Let all things be done decently and in order.” 1 Corinthians 14:40

Dominion

            “In his days shall the righteous flourish; and abundance of peace so long as the moon endureth.
He shall have dominion also from sea to sea, and from the river unto the ends of the earth.
They that dwell in the wilderness shall bow before him; and his enemies shall lick the dust. Psalm 72:7-9

            “Bless the Lord, all his works in all places of his dominion: bless the Lord, O my soul.”  Psam 103:22

          “Thy kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and thy dominion endureth throughout all generations.” Psalm 145:13

           “How great are his signs! And how mighty are his wonders! His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and his dominion is from generation to generation.” Daniel 4:3

           “And at the end of the days I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up mine eyes unto heaven, and mine understanding returned unto me, and I blessed the most High, and I praised and honoured him that liveth for ever, whose dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom is from generation to generation:” Daniel 4:34

           “I make a decree, That in every dominion of my kingdom men tremble and fear before the God of Daniel: for he is the living God, and stedfast for ever, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed, and his dominion shall be even unto the end.” Daniel 6:26

           “I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him. And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed. Daniel 7:13-14

            “Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: Ephesians 1:21

            For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:” Colossians 1:16

             To him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.” 1Peter 5:11

             “To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.” Jude 1:25

“And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.” Revelation 1:6

Sin
Self  in  Neutral

“And Israel joined himself unto Baalpeor: and the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel.” Numbers 25:3

“Then Adonijah the son of Haggith exalted himself, saying, I will be king: and he prepared him chariots and horsemen, and fifty men to run before him”. 1 Kings 1:5

        “But there was none like unto Ahab, which did sell himself to work wickedness in the sight of the Lord, whom Jezebel his wife stirred up.” 1 Kings 21:25

        “And it came to pass, when Rehoboam had established the kingdom, and had strengthened himself, he forsook the law of the Lord, and all Israel with him.” 2 Chronicles 12:1

        “And Jehoshaphat his son reigned in his stead, and strengthened himself against Israel.” 2 Chronicles 17:1

         “And after this did Jehoshaphat king of Judah join himself with Ahaziah king of Israel, who did very wickedly:” 2 Chronicles 20:35

         “Now when Jehoram was risen up to the kingdom of his father, he strengthened himself, and slew all his brethren with the sword, and divers also of the princes of Israel.” 2 Chronicles 21:4

         “Now it came to pass, after that Amaziah was come from the slaughter of the Edomites, that he brought the gods of the children of Seir, and set them up to be his gods, and bowed down himself before them, and burned incense unto them.” 2 Chronicles 25:14

          And he did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord his God, and humbled not himself before Jeremiah the prophet speaking from the mouth of the Lord.” 2 Chronicles 36:12

          “For he flattereth himself in his own eyes, until his iniquity be found to be hateful.” Psalm 36:2

         “He deviseth mischief upon his bed; he setteth himself in a way that is not good; he abhorreth not evil.” Psalm 36:4

         “His own iniquities shall take the wicked himself, and he shall be holden with the cords of his sins.” Proverbs 5:22

         “I have seen the wicked in great power, and spreading himself like a green bay tree. Psalm 37:35

“Lo, this is the man that made not God his strength; but trusted in the abundance of his riches, and strengthened himself in his wickedness.”   Psalm 52:7

“Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.” Jude 1:8

“And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.” Luke 9:23

                                                     ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Romans 6:4,6,9,11

 “We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.

We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin.

We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him.

So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.”

And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord,
are being transformed into the same image
from one degree of glory to another.
For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.
2 Corinthians 3:18

Dear Father, let us remember your glory, order, and dominion today as we pilgrim through this land that the apostle John said, “lieth in wickedness.” Make us to remember that we are dead to sin and alive to you through Christ, your Son. Let us look up today in the hope of our salvation from sin and its dominion. Thank you that we are under your care, even as you have drawn us to Christ, as our Lord and Savior.   In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

PHOTO BY TIM SLOAN/AFP/GETTY IMAGES