Psalms 84:11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield: the Lord will give grace and glory: no "good" thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.
This passage of scripture is as plain as it gets, by stating unequivocally that whatsoever comes from the hand of God to fallen man is always given with our "GOOD" in mind. Starting with the best gift ever, in the person of His son Jesus Christ, to all the material benefits He showers upon us every day, and also His tender mercies that are renewed to the human family each morning; all can be summed up in the word "GOOD". This fundamental theme runs as a golden thread throughout the pages of sacred writ, and is exemplified in the personal testimonies of millions of people worldwide. Let's read, beginning with the first Book of the Bible:
Genesis 1:3 And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. 4 And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.
Genesis 1:10 And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good.
Genesis 1:12 And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good.
Genesis 1:21 And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good.
Genesis 1:31 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.
And then we move on to the personal testimonies of those who recognized and experienced the goodness of The Lord:
Exodus 18:9 And Jethro rejoiced for all the goodness which the Lord had done to Israel, whom he had delivered out of the hand of the Egyptians.
Psalms 23:6 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.
Psalms 33:4 For the word of the Lord is right; and all his works are done in truth. 5 He loveth righteousness and judgment: the earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.
Psalms 65:11 Thou crownest the year with thy goodness; and thy paths drop fatness. 12 They drop upon the pastures of the wilderness: and the little hills rejoice on every side. 13 The pastures are clothed with flocks; the valleys also are covered over with corn; they shout for joy, they also sing.
James 1:17 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.
It is obvious then, that the underlying ,logical reason for believing, trusting, following, and looking to Jesus is because of this singular fact, that He is "GOOD".
The problem is that, what we as individuals sometimes refer to as being "good", is not always so, and vice versa. Many things God has ordained for our good are not viewed as such by millions of people, and so there seems to be an apparent conflict between what is really good and what is not.
My good friend once invited me to have dinner at a friend's house. With a sincere look on his face, he described to me what he honestly believed would be a "finger-licking good" meal, consisting of stewed pig feet, and pudding made of pig's blood, bread crumbs and spices. As he spoke, his mouth seemed to water, just from contemplating the food described above. My mind immediately reverted back to the scriptures to see if the "finger licking good" meal I was invited to, was really so. I found my answer in the book of Leviticus. Let's read:
Leviticus 11:7 And the swine, though he divide the hoof, and be clovenfooted, yet he cheweth not the cud; he is unclean to you. 8 Of their flesh shall ye not eat, and their carcase shall ye not touch; they are unclean to you.
Leviticus 17:12 Therefore I said unto the children of Israel, No soul of you shall eat blood, neither shall any stranger that sojourneth among you eat blood. 13 And whatsoever man there be of the children of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn among you, which hunteth and catcheth any beast or fowl that may be eaten; he shall even pour out the blood thereof, and cover it with dust. 14 For it is the life of all flesh; the blood of it is for the life thereof: therefore I said unto the children of Israel, Ye shall eat the blood of no manner of flesh: for the life of all flesh is the blood thereof: whosoever eateth it shall be cut off.
As a result, I had to respectfully decline even though the offer was made in honesty and sincerity. Scientists and researchers have now confirmed what the Lord was saying thousands of years ago, that the consumption of blood and swine's flesh is not good, and consequently exposes individuals to a host of deadly diseases and infections that could otherwise be avoided if we believe that God's instructions on this matter is "good".
Recently a woman was in dire need of medical attention because of a persistent, violent headache that would not go away. After agreeing to have surgery for what was believed to be a brain tumor, her doctors made a startling discovery. A worm, several feet in length was living inside of her brain and was the cause of her incessant , pounding headaches. After extensive questioning and research, it was discovered that she had contracted the worm through the eating of swine's flesh. Like my good friend, she probably thought that pork was "finger licking good" but as it turned out, that was absolutely not the case. Which reminds us of another passage of scripture to which God desires that we all take heed. Let's read:
Deuteronomy 4:39 Know therefore this day, and consider it in thine heart, that the Lord he is God in heaven above, and upon the earth beneath: there is none else. 40 Thou shalt keep therefore his statutes, and his commandments, which I command thee this day, that it may go well with thee, and with thy children after thee, and that thou mayest prolong thy days upon the earth, which the Lord thy God giveth thee, for ever.
We invite every one to take a second look at all the instructions which God has given, and in the end we will certainly conclude that they were given with the best interest of the human family in mind. They should not be viewed merely from a prohibitory perspective, but with the understanding that God is "GOOD", and that His laws and statutes are built upon the eternal principles of goodness and truth. We therefore conclude with an invitation and a promise:
Psalms 34:8 O taste and see that the Lord is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him.
May this be our experience both now and forever. "Good night" and God bless!