In a previous post, I wrote about trusting God because He is good. But I want to explore that thought deeper and explain what I mean and why I believe God is good. And because He is good, you can trust Him.
Before I say anything else, I want to acknowledge that God is good because that is what God reveals to us. God does not need justification. If He does, He can speak for Himself. Just ask Job! Also, God is not a human, and His mind is not like ours. So we have difficulty understanding and describing who God is or is not. At some point, whether you want to believe in God or you’re going to believe God does not exist, you reach a point where you have to have faith. Faith begins where our understanding ends, and we choose how to orientate our lives.
I want to examine God’s characteristics that help us see His goodness and why we can trust Him.
God is Love
When thinking about the characteristics that confirm God’s goodness, the first one that comes to mind is that God is love. The book of John contains the most famous Bible verse declaring that God loves the world. And God loved the world from the beginning. Love is another one of the characteristics (besides His goodness) that you cannot remove from God. If you take love out, you are no longer talking about the God of the Bible. We cannot stop with the assumption that God’s love is like our love. We often stop at the shallow edge of the water and assume that human love is like God’s love. But these are two different things! God uses human language and analogy to help us understand as best as we humans can.
God is Wise
A critic will have a different take on a book than the author. While it is a limited analogy, I want to express that because God is the creator, He understands the best way to navigate life. I am always astonished as I read through the Old Testament laws. I think about how many line up with food safety and medical safety taught today. God instructed the Israelites to avoid spreading infection thousands of years before we understood microbiology. Wisdom is the sense of not just knowing but knowing what is best. As Jesus explained, those who hear His words and put them into practice are building on a solid foundation.
God is Holy and Just but Merciful
God is holy, which means He cannot tolerate sin. So He is just when He punishes those who insist on living wicked and evil lives. But thankfully, there is mercy for those who repent and seek forgiveness. Jesus’ death on the cross opened the door for all who accept Him as Lord and follow Him to receive eternal atonement (mercy). But to know that God seeks justice is to understand that He is not in Heaven scheming ways to punish you when you mess up. He is not vindictive or petty, and He is not fickle. God is not out to get you or ruin your life.
C.S. Lewis captures the idea of God, who can be trusted, in his book The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Four children find a portal to a magical land called Narnia. In Narnia, animals can talk. The children soon learn that a ruler of the land named Azlan is also a lion. Taken back, the question is asked if Azlan is safe. And the answer was no; He is not safe but good. (Lewis, C. S. (2005). The lion, the witch, and the wardrobe. ZonderKidz.)
God is not tame or controllable. He is not a cosmic Santa Clause awaiting our wish list of prayers. But He is good, and we can trust Him.