Wednesday, April 05, 2006

The Fruit of the Spirit: Goodness

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another." Galatians 5:22-26

The Webster’s 1828 Dictionary defines goodness as being “the state of being good; the physical qualities which constitute value, excellence or perfection.” Also, “the moral qualities which constitute Christian excellence; moral virtue; religion.” It is also closely tied with kindness, benevolence, and mercy.

I looked up the word “good” as well, since goodness is the state of being good. Out of more than 40 definitions number 8 stood out. It means, “sound; perfect; uncorrupted; undamaged.”

Perfect and uncorrupted describe the world as God first created it. At the end of each stage of creation God affirmed its goodness. After the fall of man and the entrance of sin, we no longer had the perfectly good natures that we had before.

Goodness can only be attained now by the grace of the perfect incorruptible Christ who took our sin upon himself. God is good, and this is declared throughout Scripture.

“They shall pour forth the fame of your abundant goodness and shall sing aloud of your righteousness.” Psalms 145:7

“For how great is his goodness, and how great his beauty!” Zechariah 9:17a

We are now the righteousness of God in Christ, and we are called to goodness. Psalms 23:6 says, “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD forever.”

In Romans 15:14 Paul is writing to the Christians in Rome telling them that he is satisfied with them for the reason that they are full of goodness. We should be full of goodness as well and strive to have Christian excellence and moral virtue. By God’s grace, the goodness that we lost through sin has been restored to us through Jesus Christ’s payment of that sin.

The Lord is good!

7 comments:

Wholesome Works said...

Elizabeth,

Another good post!

I've really enjoyed your pictures. I think they're all very appropriate.

Zachary

the traveler said...

What a great definition of good! Without Christ, goodness is impossible.

Susanna Moore said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Susanna Moore said...

Inspiring post! I think in this day and age we use the word good too casually. If the word really means "uncorrupted, undamaged, and perfect" then there really is very little true goodness. This is why it is so important to fully rely on God's grace. Thanks for bringing out that we are now the righteousness of God in Christ. Keep up the "good" work!!!

I'm sorry that my first comment was unintentionally deleted.

Kaitlin said...

Great post, Elizabeth!

Sparky said...

Haven't been by in a while. Glad to see you are keeping up the good work.

Lindsey said...

Wonderful post, Elizabeth! I'm so enjoying your posts on the fruit of the Spirit. Keep up the wonderful work!