God Is Good, But How Good Is He?

I read something on the weekend that hit me like a stone. It was in a book written by someone who is troubled that the church no longer fears God like in the good ol’ days of the Old Testament. The problem, apparently, is the result of “overemphasizing the goodness of God.”

Think about that. We have “overemphasized” the goodness of God. That’s like saying, “He’s good, but He’s not that good. There’s a teeny, tiny part of him that stinks of badness.”

I beg to differ.

If I had just one adjective to describe God I would say He is love, but if I were given a second adjective I would say He is good.

Indeed, God is the very definition of good. Look up “good” in the dictionary and it says, “see God.”

The devil – who is thoroughly bad – doesn’t want us to think of God as being perfectly good. But He is good and everything He does is good.

The Jew says, “God is one,” and He is.

The Muslim says, “God is great,” and He is.

But the Christian says, “God is good” and rejoices!

It is the goodness of God that makes the good news good. Just as there is no bad news in the good news, there’s no badness in God.

Imagine where we would be if God were bad, or half bad and half good. We would live under a cloud of uncertainty, fearful of His mood swings. But God is not like that!

God never has a bad day, nor even a bad moment. He doesn’t have a bad temper. He never has occasion to say, “oops, my bad.”

Everything about Him is good and He is good all of the time.

All of His gifts are good. If you think you have found something good and it doesn’t have God’s fingerprints all over it, you are working with an inferior definition of good. God is the benchmark for what is good.

Perhaps you have never heard that God is good. Perhaps you don’t believe it. Then taste and see for yourself! His goodness will lead you to repentance. It’ll change your mind.

Make the Good Shepherd your shepherd. He will lead you from the front, while His goodness follows you from behind all the days of your life. If you don’t know where the goodness of God is right now, turn around. It’s right there next to His everlasting mercy.

It is simply not possible to overemphasize the goodness of God. You might just as well try and overemphasize His wisdom or try and grasp the breadth, width and depth of His love!

God is good. All the time.

But that’s just my opinion. What do you think?
Sources: 2 Chr 6:41, Ps 23:1,6, 34:8, Rms 2:4

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Comments

  1. So good Paul! I agree with you!

    God is bigger than the biggest.
    He is stronger than the strongest.
    He is wiser than the wisest.
    He is better than the best.
    He is greater than the greatest.
    He is always always always ALWAYS good.

    In case somebody misunderstood me, this is what I meant: God is always good.

    Whooohoooo!

  2. perry kuey says:

    Great points. The goodness of God is the basis of our identity. We believe Jesus’ death on the cross made us good…right standing with God. We were bad. Now we are good. I am good because my God made me good by filling up and living inside my new nature. Only then can I do any good in this world.

    Not only that. He sets all things right because he is good. I suppose I am talking about His righteousness now. Peterson defines righteousness as setting all things right. But if we say “God is good” Then we believe He is working all things out for our good. He is setting everything right.

    Enjoying your clarity in your writing Paul

    Perry

  3. He is so good that Prov 13:20 and I Cor 15:33 can’t touch Him!

  4. Brilliant Paul. Love Love Love the post!
    What an incredibly bizarre thing to say that people have over emphasized the goodness of God! Just makes you laugh a bit.
    Blessings mate. Keep up the good work!

  5. Tung Lee says:

    Can’t agree more, and more people need to know that God is good
    “No one is good except God” Luk 18:19

  6. Cornel, Perry, Ryan and Tung – thanks for the comments. You guys get it. Gerry, I never thought that! Awesome. Thanks for pointing out that our bad company doesn’t corrupt God’s good character. Just as our sin is no match for his grace, His goodness is greater than our badness – and thank God it is! God can take the worst sinner and make him righteous at no risk to his (God’s) own holiness. More reasons to be thankful.

  7. God is Good.. :) All the time.. I think the Cross is more than enough prof of that…
    some one said “GOD LOVES U, Jesus came to SHOW IT”..:)

  8. I heard this saying once that said ‘God might not seem nice at times, but He is always good.” And it is true I believe. Some things that God does may not, in our human understanding seem nice. Like allowing earthquakes, war, even causing ‘bad’ things to happen. But He is always good. He always has a plan as to why He allows things, and it is a good plan. Its trusting him with our unjust circumstances and painful challenges, knowing He is good. So yes… God is GOOD!

  9. If God allows these things to happen,He might as well just done them Himself.Just thinking about some of the traditional things we been taught Tracy.Not so sure about the allowing teaching we have been fed.Seems like a pat anwser for things people don’t understand to me.Just can’t see it in the new convenant.

  10. Can you give an example Sandy as to what you mean? If God didnt allow sin for example, we would all be dead. He allowed Job to be tested. He allowed Judas the free choice to decieve Jesus. I dont quite see where you are coming from by saying that God doesnt ‘allow’, and that we have been misled. If you go down that road, God becomes a very distant overseer of His creation, and is not intimately involved with us…..

    • Colleen G says:

      There are two kinds of “allow” in Christian-speak. One means God stepped back and let things happen like free will, set up weather patterns to follow a natural based course, etc. The second kind is a warped view of “allows” that sees God having to give a stamp of approval to to said “bad” events because nothign can happen without HIs express approval. In other words God either steps back and lets nature take it course or He secretly directs evil and bad things to happen because His all-power will not allow Him to let go of the puppet strings of this world.
      Either God can let Himeself not act and lets things happen or He has to act on everything, everywhere which turns Him into a manical puppet master wielding both good and evil.

  11. Paul, you have a great gift for understanding God, Christ, and the Bible! I think you have a perfect sense of humor as well, showing up in not only your writing, but the pictures you put up on your blog :) Don’t ever let it go to your head! Please just keep doing what you are doing! You are more valuable than you know as you promote the Gospel, and the grace of God! He has put you in a good place. I thank God for you and share your blog with others. – Sandy

    • Thank you, Sandy. I am encouraged. Don’t worry, I am surrounded by people who would never let anything go to my head! Yes, God has me in a good place – the best place I have ever been. I marvel at how he got me here.

  12. Onesmus gitonga says:

    Nothing foul or bad is in God. He is too good to fully understand his goodness. I actually can’t explain why he is so good even to a bad people except that he is good coz he is God. Thank you Abba for your goodness. I’m with you Paul.

  13. Roshan "Ccean" Easo says:

    Paul, I always remember why I fell in love with escapetoreality each time I dare to read this. “Our responsibility, our only responsibility, is to believe God is good and true. “

  14. Amen! I think that part of the problem is that we confuse what is good for us, and what isn’t. So many times on FB I see posts from friends about getting a raise, havibg a baby, getting married…followed by “God is so good!”. Yes. He is. But He was still good when I became a widow 2 years ago. He is just as good during our darkest of times, as He is during the best of times.

  15. To say God is good but He allows bad things to happen is insane. What earthly father would allow bad things to happen to their children, if you earthly fathers wouldn’t how much more Our Heavenly Father. God is not in control of evrrything that happens. To think that He is, is the cause for this “God allows” doctrine which is not biblical at all. Thank you Paul for the simplicity of the article. I don’t comment much but I’m a regular on your blog.

  16. Everything works for good for those that believe, the bad is from the man God, yes God said we are Gods.We create and God speaks of it before the creation.

    • Chris Romans 8:28 does say God works all things for the good of them that love him… but what it doesn’t say is that God causes the bad things. Jesus on earth revealed the heart of God, not even once did He put sickness, a curse or poverty on anyone to teach them a lesson. Jesus didn’t kill anyone because God needed them in heaven. Instead he raised the dead. He healed the sick. He delivered the oppressed. Jesus is the heart of the Father, look to Him and you’ll know the heart and will of our Father.

      • It seems you have not read what I have said. The bible also says that before God there was nothing, this is what makes God , God. He is the creator.Read John 1:1-3. Even the first words of scripture tell us this , this is the beginning of truth.

      • It is impossible for God to kill anyone, and the only place man can take life is in his heart.

      • Now if you really understand the implications of my last comment, you will start to understand death.

  17. Romans 5:12 AMP
    Therefore, as sin came into the world through one man, and death as the result of sin, so death spread to all men, [no one being able to stop it or to escape its power] because all men sinned.
    It seems like my bible tells me God didn’t create death, but it entered in as a result of sin. John 10:10 is clear about who’s the killer, destroyer and thief. Romans 11:29 says the gifts of God are irrevocable, life is a gift from God and He won’t take it back. God is not a killer. He gives life in abundance

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