Fruit of the Spirit series: The glory of goodness
Moses had a unique relationship with God.
Scripture says Moses talked to God face to face. In the same chapter scripture says that no one can see God’s face and live.
In fact, when men saw a vision of God, they did not see a form or body, they saw the brilliance of light. What they saw was the brightness of His glory.
The more Moses got to know God the more intrigued He was about Him. It was like Moses was seeing there is more to God than I realized – I want to know You more.
Moses said to God, “I pray show me Your glory.”
“Glory” = #3519 Kabowd (Ka-vode) weight, honor, splendor
That is a tall order! Translated to mean: I want to see what makes You tick. What You are all about. What is Your essence, I want to know You! Show me Your heart – the inner You.
It’s interesting that God is willing to show His glory to people – to us!
Then God said, “I will make all My goodness pass before you, and I will proclaim the name of the Lord before you. I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy.” Exodus 33:19
The word “goodness” here means the the best of the best.
Goodness is what God looks like!
God told Moses this encounter with My goodness will be so overwhelming that I will have to place you in the cleft of the rock and cover you with My hand while I pass by or else My glory, which is My goodness would consume you.
It was so awesome that every time Moses spent time face to face with God it made his face shine and he had to put a veil over his face.
When God causes His goodness to pass before us, and we recognize it, it makes our face shine too! His goodness is our radiance.
Ill. There is no physical description of Jesus in the bible. I think this is on purpose. Isaiah is the only one that comes close. He said “He has no form of comeliness and when we see Him there is no beauty that we should desire Him.” Isa. 53:2
Yet the Bible still tells us what Jesus looks like:
“The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of His being . . .” Heb. 1:3
God’s goodness in the face of Jesus are manifested in people who are being led by the Spirit to do selfless acts of goodness to others.
“Jesus went about doing good and healing all those oppressed by the devil.” Acts 10:38
We, His church, His body represent Him on earth. We do not represent the church – we represent (we are RE-Presenting) Him on earth.
Our mission purpose statement: PRESENTING JESUS THE REVELATION OF TRUTH AND GRACE AND TRANSFORMS LIVES.
GOD has presented Jesus to us and we are RE-PRESENTING JESUS
What is your purpose?
It is not just your destiny or your ministry to do things. Your purpose is to be an accurate reflection of the glory of God. We are Re-presenting the glory of God (His goodness). “Creation groans for the revealing of the sons and daughters of God” Rom. 8:22. The earth groans for this. Someone said, even water longs to be walked on again. We are here to make a supernatural difference and manifest God to the earth. I don’t have the right to adjust my assignment from God to what I think I am qualified to do.
- The devil will try to stop this from happening by oppression and all kinds of attacks.
- Regardless of what the devil throws our way - our part is to stay focused on loving God – walk with Him through whatever trial it is and have the confidence that what the enemy has planned against you can turned around by God for good (Gen. 50:20). Romans 8:28 = such promises would not be in the Bible if everything worked the way we expected and we always got what we requested. This is why we can give God a thank offering before we know how things are going to turn out.
You can’t escape the goodness of God!
His kindness/goodness led you to repentance (Rom. 2:4).
His relentless goodness is what chased you down. “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the day of my life …” Psalm 23
It doesn’t leave you on days you don’t behave well.
We ARE TO anticipate that we are going to experience the goodness of God. If you know God’s nature (goodness = His best), then this knowledge will help you through the tough times.
Ill. David had a prophecy that he would be the next king of Israel. Then for the next several years after this he had to run for his life from King Saul. Sure he had times he must have been disappointed – confused – even depressed. He wrote,
“I would have fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of God in the land of the living.” Psalm 27:13
ill. Fainting goats? When they get startled from loud noise their muscles lock up and they fall over.
PIC Fainting Goat
XNS who fail to see the goodness of God we will fall into unbelief, doubt and skepticism.
“But he who fails to find Me injures himself; all who hate Me love death.” Proverbs 8:36
The goodness of God is present in every situation but you have to look for it!
Ill. Let’s say you are in a crowd of thousands of people. You are supposed to meet someone at this general location. You don’t have a cell phone. In the crowd you look past all the people and specifically look for that one person you are to find. You don’t stop looking until you find them. It’s the same way with God’s goodness in every situation. You won’t find it unless you are looking for it!
Guaranteed – it is there. It was planted by God in the beginning!
The first time Goodness is mentioned in the Bible is at the end of every day God created is the often repeated phrase,
“And God saw that it was good.”
In the midst of disorder, chaos, darkness God demonstrated His goodness and it was His goodness that changed the atmosphere from formless, void and chaos into something beautiful.
There is a lot of evil in this world. But there is more goodness of God. In fact, God told us (the believers) to overcome evil with good. You have to look for the goodness of God.
“Taste and see that the Lord is good.” Psalm 34:8
ill. When dating Pam I tried to impress her like I was a man of means and culture. Took her to fancy restaurant ordered wine. Just before we went out that night I read an article in a magazine how to order wine and look like you know what you are doing. The waiter brought the bottle to the table – I felt the cork, smelled the glass of wine that then taste and savor it in my mouth acting like I knew what I was doing.
First you have to have a taste, experience of the goodness of God for yourself THEN you will begin to see it more clearly. Tasting is a personal experience. I can’t taste something for you – you have to taste and see for yourself.
How we learn Jesus is by personally experiencing – Tasting His goodness.
Ill. You can hear about being born again and yet not understand it. But once you experience it then you understand it more clearly.
Ill. God puts good desires in you and ideas for good works that you must act on according to faith, trusting Him.
Paul wrote to the church these words, “We pray for you that God would count your worthy of this calling and with power fulfill all your GOOD desires and works done by faith, so that the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you . . .” 2 Thes. 1:11-12
Goodness is something that comes from God through people.
- Sometimes I thought God was leading me only to find out it was my own idea. Other times I had a little thought to do something and discovered it was indeed God leading me. Sometimes trial and error. Learn by doing and sometimes trusting that instinct that God is leading you.
Ill. I love to see healings and miracles. I love it more when God does His healings and miracles through me to someone. Sometimes people will come to me in hopes that God will answer my prayers because I am a man of God. Some times a miracle did happen. More times than I care to admit there was no noticeable change.
I am learning that some times I am led by God and other times led by my feelings or emotions. It takes practice to learn to discern God’s still small voice talking to you.
My prayer when I get alone with God has been – God You’ve got to do something in my life so deeply that when people come to me, they encounter You. That is an ongoing prayer.
It is a necessity that I be filled with the Spirit – and also for every believer listening. It is vital that we live Spirit-filled lives. How will we know we are filled with the Spirit.
- Not because of some experience that happened some time ago.
Ill. To illustrate what it means to be filled with the Spirit I take an unopened bottle of water and ask, “Is this water bottle full?” Many answer yes. It is as full as much as it can contain but it is not as full as it can be. Then I take another water bottle and pour into it until it overflows. Point: It is only full when it is overflowing.
It is the same for us.
We are only filled with the Spirit when we are overflowing! It is not by what I contain but from what flows from me NOW!
Jesus made that clear in John 7 “rivers of living water”.
Being filled with the Spirit does not point to some experience that happened years ago. It is not measured by what I contain but from what flows from me now!
Since God’s glory is His goodness then His goodness is what will flow from me if I am filled with His Spirit.
Concl: As a recipient of the goodness of God – I owe people the opportunity to experience God when I meet them. It is good news that must be preached!
“How will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him if they have not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher.” Romans 10:14
Don’t mistake a preacher as someone behind a pulpit in a church building. The best preachers carry no titles and don’t preach in church buildings. The best preachers Re-present Jesus to a world that has never tasted and seen Him.
PIC of Preach the gospel at all times and when necessary use words:
“So as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to the household of faith.” Gal. 6:10