God is Good!

As we were walking across the parking lot at the grocery store last week, a Christian brother passed by and, with a big grin on his face shouted out, “God is good. He can’t help Himself!”  That’s true. God is good—all the time—because that is His character and He can’t deny Himself. He will be who He is—all the time.  Of course, He is also holy, just, and righteous, as indicated by His name, Yahweh (Jehovah). He is the righteous God who hates sin but loves the sinner and thus provided for redemption.      

Jeremiah, often referred to as the “weeping prophet” (see Jer. 9:1; 13:17), for more than 40 years faithfully proclaimed God’s judgment on apostate Judah, all the while enduring opposition, beatings and even imprisonment. He even composed several melancholy poems of lament (mourning) over the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple by the Babylonians under Nebuchadnezzar.  Yet in the midst of it all, Jeremiah proclaimed His hope in the unchanging goodness of God, writing these words: “The LORD’s lovingkindnesses (mercies) indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Thy faithfulness. ‘The LORD is my portion,’  says my soul, ‘Therefore I have hope in Him.’ The LORD is good to those who wait for Him, to the person who seeks Him” (Lam. 3:22-25).  Jerusalem and the Temple had been reduced to a pile of rubble by invading Babylonian hordes, and Jeremiah, heart-broken, wrote a lament, but then in the midst of this terrible holocaust, he cried out “Great is Thyfaithfulness!”  In the face of death and destruction with life seemingly coming apart at the seams, Jeremiah turned a tragedy into a triumph of faith recognizing that God had never failed him in the past and had promised to remain faithful in the future. In the light of the unchangeableness of the God he knew and loved, Jeremiah found hope and comfort. If ever there was a man who had to “wait on God” (v. 25), it was Jeremiah. He watched while his whole world fell apart and yet he could say, “The LORD is good!” {NOTE: The concept of “wait” is an expectant, joyful, waiting for the just resolution of all things by the One who created, redeemed, and sustains all things, and never sleeps or becomes weary (Isa. 40:28) and who promises: “Those who wait for the LORD will gain new strength; they will mount up with wings like eagles, they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary” (Isa. 40:31).}     

Jonah, the “reluctant prophet” who went—after the ordeal of being cast into the sea and swallowed by the “great fish” that “God appointed (prepared or made ready)” (Jonah 1:17)—to preach to the many thousands of heathen, idolatrous residents of  Nineveh (located near the modern city of Mosul, Iraq), complained when they repented and God forgave them and withheld judgment upon them. Jonah was angry because he knew that God would spare the Ninevites if they repented and he didn’t want these enemies of Israel to be spared.  That’s why he had fled the opposite direction when God told him to go to Nineveh (Jon. 1:1,2). Jonah’s response to God?  “I knew this is what would happen!” ‘For I knew that You are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness (mercy), and the One who relents from sending calamity’” (Jon. 4:2).  God is gracious, compassionate and merciful—God is good, He can’t help Himself—that’s who He is!     

“Give thanks to the LORD of hosts, for the LORD is good, for His lovingkindness is everlasting” (Jer. 33:11b). Praise the Lord that in such a confusing, chaotic time as we are going through right now, God is still the same faithful, loving, merciful, compassionate, good God that He has always been and will always be. We can pray with David: “Behold the eye of the LORD is on those who fear Him, on those who hope for His lovingkindness, to deliver their soul from death and to keep them alive in famine. Our soul waits for the LORD; He is our help and shield. For our heart rejoices in Him, because we trust in His holy name. Let Thy lovingkindness, O LORD, be upon us, according as we have hoped in Thee” (Psa. 33:18-22).  AMEN!           Forever His,            

Pastor Dave

About Pastor Dave

Until my retirement 2 years ago, I pastored an independent Bible church in Northwest Montana for nearly 38 years. During that time I also helped establish a Christian school, and a Bible Camp. I am married and have children and grandchildren. The Wisdom of the Week devotional is an outgrowth of my desire to share what God is doing in my life and in our world, and to challenge you to be a part.
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