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The Goodness of God, p.1

Anchored In Truth / Jeff Noblit
The Cross Radio
February 24, 2019 12:00 am

The Goodness of God, p.1

Anchored In Truth / Jeff Noblit

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Let's go over to the New Testament book of James, would you do that James chapter 1 James is the pastor of a local church and yet a lot of practical admonition and wisdom, and not that I plan to bring this out and studying this text a new I discovered he's very clear and strong on sovereign grace, even though he deals with the subject lot works and how works are a verification not a foundation for the verification of our true regeneration justification. It gives us some of those weighty concepts and then we can James chapter 1 beginning in verse 17 and will go down through verse 21, and probably just get half of it this evening James chapter 1 beginning in verse 17 and going through 21 he says every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the father of lights with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow in the exercise of his will, he brought us forth by the word of truth, so that we would be a kind of firstfruits among his creatures. This you know, my beloved brethren but everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger with anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God. Therefore, putting aside all filthiness and all that remains of wickedness, in humility receive the word implanted, which is able to save your souls now starting back up in verse 12 he begins talking about trials and how were tempted in trials and because of our fallenness in our proneness to selfishness, self-serving rebellion.

We are vulnerable to lust.

We commit sin, and we could never look to God and say what you put me in this spot are you caused this rebellion are you caused this lust to arrive at you caused this up a transgression in the city said we could never do that. That's not possible God and tempt anyone. That's not God's problem.

The problem is in you and that's why he picks up in verse 17 with everything that comes from God is good seller talk about the goodness of God.

That's with what outside of these couple of expositions will do here. The goodness of God, and I. The absolute goodness of God the absolute goodness of Godwords again. Verse 17 every good thing and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the father of lights with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow. So in other words, anytime we see something that's not good.

Anything time we see something that's less-than-perfect are righteous didn't come from God. It came from man, it came from within our own hearts. You know, in the in Jesus day when the one of the great teachings of the Pharisees was that the futures exposed to these particular items, like maybe a dead body or an unclean meat if you exposed to that made you dirty and spiritually and ceremonially unclean or pure close to a person at a certain disease you could become unclean and a particular when it came took to meets they were really strong about Kate it the can't eat these meets and can't eat these foods, they were cleansed there unclean before God and Jesus made very clear. He said the one thing you guys don't understand it's not what goes into a man that makes him unclean.

It's what comes out of his mouth that makes him unclean. Anything you take, and can't really defile you before God, it's only because your heart is already fallen.

Your heart is already sinful.

You are born limit would closer are more to the original date you were conceived in sin you inherited from your forefathers ate a nature to rebel against God, and that's why the sinful stuff comes out you that's what makes you unclean, not the stuff you put on what's already in the air makes you unclean and that's basically what James is saying here. God didn't put something on you and cause you to sin are because the evil that's in the world man did that out of man's own sin so a under our first meeting for the first main point is God's absolute goodness that a is God never changes in the point is verse 17 has worded their every good thing given every perfect gift is from above, coming down for the father lights with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.

The words God is good and there's something God can't do. He can't become bad he can't change that the immutability of God. He just doesn't change all these good things.

In all these perfect things come for medium now man left to himself man apart from God. This could continually devolves heat the kid to continually digresses and and falls into more and more and more corruption. Do you realize it. Just what many years ago when those in our culture who wanted to promote immoralities said things like this. Well, God just made some people to have attraction to the same-sex. Some men just are attracted to other men.

Some women are just attracted to other women and all we want is for you just to recognize that and and and and and it really they may not of said we just want you to allow us to have a marriage like other folks have, but actually what they said was no we want you to celebrate and embrace these things but you notice it wouldn't too long before that wouldn't enough then all of a sudden some others came up and they took their lust further. So we know we can't really figure out which way we want to go. We have desires for men sometimes and then we have desires for women sometimes over boxing and then numb, then you have the gender issue and you have all the other things in the last time I checked that we got LGBT Q plus and that's this diaphanous not only in their folks. When you take a people and separate themselves from the ejected standard of God, then man will continually fall into corruption. He will continually fall into wickedness. The dominoes just keep falling ill just keep going further down the funnel events after years ago Baptist preacher said I used the sake of societies going to the dogs, but I can say that anymore. Out of respect for doll the things that tongue social. I haven't heard much about all we want is is to be married like other people you'll hear that much more to another.

Just saying. All we want is every single bizarre perverse thing that might come across a fallen man's heart.

We want to be allowed to do that we don't anybody anywhere to question that our call that CN are wrong and so but my point is just James is saying here the perfect and good things come from God. But this kind of stuff comes from man man can come up with this all on his own.

He can never pin that on God we have these what three states now that basically at least I as it works out in reality that basically have made infanticide legal. If a child is is born through a botched abortion. There's provisions to allow the newborn baby to die. Think they have a state like you can walk away and just let it be exposed in an and parish folks were desist stuffy in words of the I'm go to word incident. It's not going to end unless God intervenes is not going to enlist because that's what man does when he decides okay.

We won't know moral standards we don't want no objective truth from which to mower our sales in the God. Our sales will decide for ourselves what's right and wrong will decide for ourselves with good. He met the continually degenerate's that's what man that God didn't do that every good and perfect thing comes from God and he uses these metaphors of light.

Here he is coming that prohibit heaven, the father of lights and I think that's the point is that contrast with what man comes up with man comes up with dark stuff, dark stuff. I told you this before but always comes to my mind. I don't know why but we had a fella one time that got converted and joined our church and he was a former bouncer in one of these club and at that time they close the club at 2 o'clock in the morning on the weekends.

He said he said pastor you wouldn't believe what when they would go at 2 o'clock in the morning and 2 o'clock to close the club eternal blocks of these.

Those people scatterplot roaches slightly.

We lack the darkness. Well, God's not dark. He's the father of lights and he can't change.

He's always holy. He's always perfect.

He's always good. The absolute goodness of God. He is the unchangeable Lord of light and by the way, that's what our message never changes. And that's why our methods never change because we serve an unchanging God if if the truth changes, whether it's a message, or the methods other some methods that may change the primary chief methods on which the church is to function and be built. If those things can change. Then God is a varying shadow, this text is there's no variation in him. He's always truth and he's always light. He is never dim and he never dims to even the slightest shade of gray. There's no variation in him.

There's no seat shifting shadow. James says here he has immutability. He's infinitely perfect and infinite perfection cannot change because of the change that would imply that what he was before was imperfection. As someone said, has it ever occurred to you that nothing's ever occurred to God.nothing separatist dots on thought about that, as if they were something he lacked are something he was deficient in. That's impossible. God has never had this thought quote I've had better days" God's never had that thought God's never had this thought quote I've had finer moments" know he's always perfect. He's always God there's no shifting there's no shadow, there's no change. He's the perfect father of lights. Holy and perfect all the time. He cannot be more faithful than he is. He's just perfectly faithful. He cannot be loving then he is. He's perfectly loving. He cannot be more good than ESE's perfectly good he cannot be more holy than he is a perfectly holy he cannot be just more than he has because he is perfectly just the wonder when he's talking our Jesus was talking. He said, before Abraham was, I am.

I just always have been. This way I didn't become something I want on course to be something I always have been. What I am the absolute goodness of God. Malachi 36 tells us. I am the Lord, I change not. Psalm 102, verse 27 reminds us, but thou art the same, and thy years shall have no end. So he's absolutely good.

He's always good so that he was God never changes. Now, be under God's absolute goodness is God is always good Texas here.

Verse 17 every good thing given and every perfect gift comes for me. A couple thoughts here. Notice thing with me for just a moment about how God is good or how God's goodness is bestowed to his creatures heavier. Thought about that.

He imparts happiness to his creatures and he didn't have to do that yet heard a singing bird were at that time of the year where if you like to hang out in the woods like I do you notice there's a lot more birds singing.

There was no about you, but those birds that I hear singing are happy birds.

I do still think they just saying they're happy about singing there happy about the sun there happy about the worm on a whatever it is, God imparts happiness to his now I'm not a big Person.

Some of you are were praying for you know on that deck.

They can be sweet and cute and cuddly in their own way. That's what I got Pentium 4 but you know see sweet and cute and she's cuddly at, but not nevertheless have you ever seen a cat when when a cat was at There with the just she just Persian Persian per means that cats happy that Happy. God did folks that's the goodness of God, and not now. The dog I haven't had a dog a good while my dog did something in his stomach got twisted any doubt they if that ever happens to an analog large chested animals that can happen to them and bow I've missed him. He was my buddy Abdul Butchart or whatever they just follow me around everywhere I went in. He's about 120 pound German Shepherd and he just made me feel safe and comfortable. I really enjoyed my dog and a dog wags his tail when he's happy to let you know he's happy you know why because God is imparting goodness this creatures we could go on and on and on and on. These things are just this way, God did these things how good he is to his creatures. He gives them satisfaction and even gives them pleasure in the thesis fears rather, in which they have their being their eyes wait on God and he gives them their provision in due season. The Bible speaks of not only his goodness to his his creatures as part creatures here on earth. The Bible speaks of his goodness to the Angels and the books of Isaiah. The books of Revelation. If you study the Angels you find that the modules are happy, the Angels have joy that angels are in the constant love of God, his love is continually exercised to them that there filled with great great joy in great satisfaction and immense happiness because they think they bask in the presence of the perfect and holy God member in Isaiah that the angels are seen in Isaiah's vision and they cried out around the Lord, holy, holy, holy is the Lord of host the whole earth is full of his glory goodness that he shows to them. He extends multitudes of blessings to them. It makes their existence, a perpetual joy he's ever displaying his goodness and manifesting his love and then in a common way. What I mean. That will what God bestows and goodness to both his elect and is not elected those who were saved and unsaved.

Generally his goodness to man. He's even showed much, much greater goodness to man who's made his own image. Think about the constitution of our bodies how God put our bodies all five senses are inlets for great pleasure and great enjoyment. Think about how you can enjoy food some of you hungry right now and you think about what what I enjoy eating. That's a gift from God.

You enjoy the sunset you enjoy the beauty of a flower. You enjoy music, who made you that way God made you that way. He's a God of goodness to me in Ecclesiastes 11 seven says the light is pleasant and it is good for the eyes to see the sun what he means is theirs up and a Julian that theirs is a happiness in that I'm telling you that we have had.

I just I think I heard on the news, driving it while ago that Nashville, Tennessee has set 139 year record for the wettest month it's been the wettest month and 139 years. We can't be far behind. I mean it's just been so much clout and so much rain we need the rain, it can be a blessing, but the sun comes out today and you wake up in the morning.

It's like wow that's good right there. God made us that way. God gave us that happiness, but we need to remind ourselves as JM Pendleton does in his low systematic theology that God didn't have to do this so you think let's just wait all to be well know not of God and want to be that way God chosen his goodness do these things for us. Pendleton said this God might've made the senses, the medium of only pain and discussed he might've rendered every object of site as repulsive and as loathsome as the serpent and every object of taste as bitter as wormwood and every object of smell as offensive as a putrefying carcass in every object of touch as painful as the piercing of the thorn and every sound as doleful as the wail of sorrow. God's goodness is seen in the formation of our bodies with the few be rather to physical enjoyment. Think about that how many think, thousands and thousands and thousands and thousands of things God made so that either in seeing them or touching them or hearing them or spelling them or take whatever is the make us happy to give us pleasure yacht got five grandkids now and even outside of own grandkids, children and babies. Just give me great pleasure there just such are just that just does not mean you just you just you just want to say hi. I mean just smile and it just lift your spirits and just kids are good stuff as long as you erase it on when I get to play with an impending I'm a yeah I know there's difficulties and trials and parenthood understand that but wanted gift babies are wanted gift they are, can it not be the most heinous and brazen sin when mama's molecule their own children. It's so foreign to the great, great goodness and gift that children are to us all. We could go on and on. Think about the Constitution not only of our bodies in his goodness to man, but the Constitution never mind the powers of the mind powers of the mind that God gives us resources of much happiness and much of enjoyment. As we learned in grade knowledge.

It makes us glad I just I can't tell you the great great joys I have in studying the Scriptures out study and meditate and ride and read and pray and God will give me understanding and insights into what his word to say and in there is no joy on earth that compares to that joy. God gives us the happiness we had to give us a mine of course in this case we are getting joy of the Scriptures.

It requires the spiritual illumination but without your mind, you couldn't understand it, the possession of intellect raises us above the beast. This is one of the reasons why the biases were made in the image of God. We are rational beings and this brings us much pleasure and shows the great, great goodness of God, not any pain that we might experience with our bodies are with our minds is a result of man's sin and the corruption man's sin has brought it is not a reflection on God. God is full of absolute goodness now number two will not spend long here, but he's James wants to say something about God's redemptive goodness there is his absolute goodness that in the broadest sense he is so good. This creature seems good that angels he's good to mankind in general.

But Ellis narrowed that little bit to God's elect to those who believe on Jesus. Verse 18. So this good God. Verse 18 in the exercise of his will, he brought us forth by the word of truth, so that we would be a kind of firstfruits among his creatures, so we are those who originally Romans 58 talks about while we work. God demonstrates his own love toward us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us while we were yet sinners while we were in the bondage to hell and while we were unfit for heaven me say that again while we were in bondage to hail and at the same time unfit for heaven. God loved us. He didn't say I'll love you if you believe all my son is not without pictures say I'll love you if you do the rituals of the church baptism, Lord's supper take the sacraments with the priest or whoever it may be, he didn't say I'll love you if you walk down the Baptist island take the preacher said at the front.

That's okay to do that.

Certainly that's not what he said. He said while you were yet sinners while you did nothing. And while you couldn't do nothing to earn my approval. I loved you well to stop right there and praise God for now. That's the goodness of God. That is the goodness of God.

While we were in bondage to hail and unfit for heaven. He loved us first John 410 reminds us in this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us and sent his son to be the propitiation for our sins. You know when I was a lost man and really early in the my Christian pilgrimage. I had learned a lot in.

I was full of steel.

Many carnal and foolish ideas. I used to wonder why a good God could allow so many bad things to happen to good people. Give a run into that. Wow, what a good God allow so many bad things to happen to good people. And then I started gaining some wisdom.

I begin to see man the way God sees man and thus the only true way to see my how God the tribunal. Holy God, who is Beyonc and looks at.

Man.

And then I begin to switch that thing the right side of sales upside down start with nothing to switch it right so that I thought how could such a good God do so many good things for so many bad people because that's what we all were all bad in the eyes of a holy God that support a under God's redemptive goodness, redemption was planned in the heart of God. Redemption was planned in the heart of God. It was God's deliberate purpose to save us.

How does he sit there in verse 18 in the exercise of his wheel while here you are going your own way. Here you are doing your own thing here you are serving and worshiping yourself only. You might add on the little religion you might become a good Catholic are good Baptist or good Presbyterian or whatever it might be that be you putting it on and you doing it for your own glory and for your own self-satisfaction to feel good that you done something spiritual when you are doing your own thing you're all way and care for God's will and cared not for God's glory, and Kellan cared not for God's purpose. He exercised his wheel toward you in goodness to Savior. The choice to offer salvation was the exercise of his will. The method to provide salvation to the death of his son. That was the exercise of his will. The securing of our individual salvation, the preaching of the gospel in the ministry the Holy Spirit to bring the new birth. That was the exercise of his wheel.

It was all his initiative aims all of his power, and all by his plan. He was the exercise of his wheel goodness of God's redemptive goodness. Ellis go to subpoint a, not only under his redemptive goodness to receive that redemption was planned in the heart of God. Redemption is the work of God, he said to hear verse 18 in the exercise of his will, he brought us forth by the word of truth. He did something he acted on us. He brought us forth by the word of truth. We see the same truth in John chapter 3 the old familiar story of Nicodemus talking to Jean, but Jesus is not being understanding what Jesus was saying. And Jesus basically says what's of the Holy Spirit.

The Spirit blows like the wind you don't know where it's going. You know where it's coming from and so is everyone is born of the spirit. God is behind these things.

Ephesians 2 verses one through nine. Oh what a description of how God takes the initiative in God brings us forth, he brings us forth out of our darkness. He brings us forth out of our sin and he does it by the word of truth that one way to say that is by the word marked by the truth. What is the word are are even broader.

What is the message that is marked by truth, that is, it is fully and authentically.

The truth it's the gospel of Jesus Christ. It's the gospel of Jesus Christ. That's the only true word that can save men so Colossians 1 verses five and that Ephesians 1 verse 13. Because of this hope laid up for you in heaven, of which you previously heard in the word of truth, the gospel, the word of truth, the gospel now. Ephesians 113 in him you also, after listening to the message of the truth, the gospel of your salvation having also believed, you were sealed in him with the Holy Spirit of promise. Now if you want to turn over and Isaiah 55 with me would you do that Isaiah chapter 55, and I think I use this text. Not long ago, but I love the power of the picture in the state limit backup if you're in Isaiah 55 if you go if you go back up to him verse seven he talks about the wicked for sake in his ways, and the unrighteous man his thoughts letting return to the Lord and he will have compassion on him, and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon here. Here's what the prophet is saying he saying your sinners. You don't deserve God's goodness. But if you want. Turn then God will have compassion on you and he will abundantly pardon you and he's just not going to fail in doing it say continues on and says in verse eight for my thoughts are not your thoughts. Here's the point. You would not have compassion. But God would you want pardon someone who syndicate you the way you sin against God. But God would consist thoughts are not your thoughts, nor your ways my ways, declares Lord as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts are your thoughts what ways is he talking about what thoughts as he thought he told his ways of compassion.

His thoughts of pardon there higher than ours. Aren't you glad for that.

Aren't you glad God didn't have compassion the way you have compassion towards you, but God didn't pardon the way you generally pardon. I know that you sometimes I had to grab hold of myself memorize Scripture and repent to have the pardoning and compassion are not that I have.

God has no problem with it whatsoever. If he has just naturally this great great high higher than the heavens compassion and pardon for those who are his. That's wonderful, good news, I don't know about you, some of you need look at yourselves and see the sin in their so you appreciate this you understand what depth of compassion and pardon it took to reach you as the goodness of God's redemptive goodness that your side and got the membership.

I look at verse 10, 11, here's my versus not.

Don't lose the flow, the context for as the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return there without watering the earth and making it bear and sprout, and furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater. He said you've never seen a time when God brought his nutrients down on the earth in the form of water that it didn't cause things to grow is always been that way it always works that what he said so verse 11 so will my word. What words to talk about my word of compassion.

My word of pardon to you my word which is forth from my mouth will not return to me deep with outcome for accomplishing what I desire without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it. I desire to show compassion and pardon. I desire that it succeed and you sinners who are worthy of anything but others I am choosing to show compassion and partner you will fulfill that promise. God's goodness. God's redemptive goodness will fail my mama you know what that is. That's good news for center. That's good news for center you listen to me child of God. Not that you would try agrees your heart to even entertain the thought. You can't out see in the compassion of God. You cannot out send the pardon of God and that makes us want to not see that makes us want to not disobey. That's what our church across friends never have figured out about a seven submit if you teach that once saved always you teach that salvation by grace through faith all people, just like live anyway they want to know to know not of God's Spirit lives in the treasure. This great compassion. God's had on them.

The treasure this wonderful pardon God's given them and they'll want to serve their God. Are you listen to me and I know that this is a pretty good crowd this. It didn't quite maybe our average Sunday night prayer we been through a lot this past week than all the floods and things, but that we might be down a little bit tonight, but I'd rather preach to 15 that come because they are part than the preach to 15,000 that come because they're trying to get part by being there. I will just come because we were overwhelmed at this goodness all world when Fisk's see under God's redemptive goodness. We talked about redemption was planned in the heart of God. It was the exercise of his will he plan to do it. We talked about redemption being the work of God. He brought us forth now. Thirdly, redemption is for his glory. Have you heard that from this pulpit.

It's all about his glory that new for you. I don't try to just bring it up is just always there. I miss just the text is just full of it, you have to be program not to see it to not see it go back to James again go back to James chapter 1 again and look at the third part of verse 18 Read all of it will be done after this, in the exercise of his will. That's the father's plan. He will do. It's what he plan to do it through his son Jesus Christ. He brought us forth that speaks of the new birth by the word of truth that here's the here's the part that we would be a kind of first fruits among his creatures are among his creation icon. The first free stuff that James was a Jewish man who was converted to Jesus Christ and he's pastoring a group of converted Jews, they knew exactly what he meant when he said God saves you that you will be icon the first fruit I know exactly what that meant but fight in numbers 1812.

I will look it up to not trust me on this numbers 1812.

Work work work work God has given the Jews, the law when they did that when their harvest came in got it all right.

I want you to bring the first of your harvest to me, that meant they brought it to the Levitical priest, who served in the temple you put in the store have to bring the first, and then he said no. The first you bring the first and the best of what you got to me. I mean an end Took to a man in this aid. In this day when you lived your whole year waiting for the harvest. I mean if the harvest didn't come through. You can't feed your livestock.

If the harvest didn't come come through. You can't feed your family everything depended on it, and when it came in God's that are will you touch any of it. You bring the first to me in the first don't if you got 40 acres. It comes in. You don't take the poorest of the 40 acres and bring that progress to me.

You bring the first and the best of the first to me.

These keys knew exactly what James meant when he said were the firstfruits.

Here's what God say, in the exercise of God's will.

He brought us forth the gate.

He brought us into the family of God so that we might be the best of anything he's ever done. We are the trophies of grace this wonderful and glorious that God made the moon and the stars, the sun and the earth, and Jupiter and Mars. But none of this, none of the rest of what God's maiden creation compares to the work he does when he makes a Christian that little silly song he still working on the does camp because right now we don't look like much. We don't feel like we've accomplished much, and we really have everything we've accomplished against the credit for it anyway, but he's not done yet. He is making us to be the highest of the high this act of love and devotion toward us by God is that is that work where he regenerates us he brings us forth, and he makes us the finest of all his creation. Let me close with this thought in that coming day that glorification day, God the father, God the son and God the Holy Spirit will look on the fruit of their wisdom and their work. What would they be looking on the be looking on the church you us and their God the father, God the son and God the Holy Spirit will stand looking at us and we will stand before them as one individual glorified say yet not exclusively, but stand as part of a whole as the redeemed of all the ages are individually glorified but get there glorified as one as one body, one bribe, one building, one sure and with the deepest satisfaction God the father, God the son and God the Holy Spirit will gaze on their finished work and say this is the pinnacle of anything we've ever done. Look at this church. The Father authored the plan. The sun perform the plan. The spirit applies the results to our lives. Regeneration happened in our hearts we stand as justified before God and then we grow in sanctification and then one day glorification. I'm glad another one.

I don't think you'll find this in any systematic theology Everett Bible end of the ready.

The scope again just to vacate regeneration evidenced by repentance toward God and faith in Jesus Christ.

Justification and sanctification is gradual. Then in the future date glorification than the formal unification that that's that's one of the great miraculous works of God. Listen to me, that finally in free born again true child of God will be in perfect union with all the other born-again genuine saints of God. That's a miracle that's a miracle is going to be interesting to see on that day. Is it not have God's got his elect ones. Although he shall bring them all to get on it that netted nine hours was the functioning local congregations. Until that day know that they all one great glorified unified body that's God the father, God the son and God the Holy Spirit gaze on us in our glorified and unified state they are going to be feel with the deepest joy and the deepest satisfaction as we the church. Are there firstfruits. We are the highest in the greatest of all of God's doing all of God's works.

That's what James is saying the exercise of his will, he brought us forth. We might be a firstfruits highest in the best of everything God you are the work of God. If you're Christian and you are the pinnacle of his work. I don't know about you that motivates me to say sign me up to get in on working with God in this great great work