Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Being an Advocate of His Goodness

Hello everyone,

I began last week’s letter with some tough questions, frequently voiced by people everywhere, concerning the existence of a good God in a world gone mad. In this letter, I pray you will receive some understanding regarding the ‘bigger picture’ of God’s goodness to all humanity, in spite of it constantly being questioned.  It is a lengthy one, so take some time to pour over it, I believe it will be a great encouragement to you.

Having said that, as Christians, the basis of us believing in God’s goodness should never be in what we see around us, it has to be deeper and more concrete than that.  With our spirits filled with the Holy Spirit, and our minds constantly renewed to the Word of God, we find a solid, sure foundation of what we know Him to be.  As we put truly knowing the character of God as our first priority, we will see His goodness played out in our lives, and even when we walk in the shadow of the mountains we face, our trust and confidence in Who He is to us, never wavers.  That’s because we have learnt that our trust is not in what we see, but in what we don’t see, yet know to be true.  Just the same, we have an earnest expectation that no matter the circumstance, His Word is true and will always triumph.  Whatever He has promised, He will do.  Isaiah 64:4 says, “For from of old no one has heard nor perceived by the ear, nor has the eye seen a God besides You, Who works and shows Himself active on behalf of him who [earnestly] waits for Him.”

Of course, I could never, in one letter, and by my own limited understanding, do the full truth justice.  I can, however,  briefly skim across the pages of the Word, and ever so lightly summarise what it reveals when it comes to the question of God’s goodness in an evil world.  My intention is to stir in you a hunger to dig deeper into God’s Word, by His Spirit, in your own time, to find the truth that is hidden for you.  And when you find it - and you will - you will find it to be a treasure so precious and liberating, because you will discover a perspective that is beyond what you perceive in the natural.

The truth of the matter is, we live in a fallen world that has been suffering under the curse of sin (Genesis 3:17-19; John 8:24). This world is under the rule of the evil tyrant, the devil (1John 5:19), and He has been relentless in his efforts to destroy all that is good on the face of the earth.  The sad reality, is that he was given the authority to lord over the earth and the kingdoms of this world by man himself.  This happened when Adam, the first man, was deceived to exchange the dominion and authority he was given by God, for a lie.  He was meant to rule and reign on this earth, to multiply and be productive in a world that was subject to his authority and an earth that would willingly yield to his will.  It was mankind, not God, that threw it all away by choosing to question the authenticity of God’s good character (Genesis 3; Romans 5:12-15; Luke 4:5-6). Adam and Eve placed God’s goodness on trial and judged it, and acted upon that judgement by deliberately rejecting the truth they knew in their hearts about Him.  Does this sound familiar?  Is it possible, that even after the second Adam (Jesus), and all He did for us through the finished work of the cross, we have chosen to put God’s goodness on trial again?  Can it be that even now, we so easily question the goodness of God by what we hear and see in the natural?  When we have tasted and seen for ourselves, that God is good, how can we question His goodness based on the devastating results of sin we see all around us?

The devil and his despicable agents, work tirelessly, stirring up hatred and every evil thought and intention under the sun, in the minds and hearts of people everywhere. They continuously entice chaos and unrest wherever they roam. Famine and flood, sickness and death, calamity and devastation are their handiwork and their efforts are effective and touch all.  Even the earth groans for her relief and release of the evil done and embedded in her.  But the day will come, and is very near, when the devil and all his evil cohorts will be stopped and dealt with once and for all. The day of reckoning, a terrible day, where all will give account before God.  

And in the meantime, because of His goodness, God, through the life and blood of His Son, made a way for us to live victorious in this cursed world.    In spite of its evil, sorry state, because Jesus overcame the devil, sin and everything we will ever face in this world, we overcome too! John 16:33 says, “I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.]” AMPC.

Now, in Christ, we no longer have to live as victims to our circumstances.  In Him, we are victorious over sin and all its deadly effects!  1 John 3:8 says, “The reason the Son of God was made manifest (visible) was to undo (destroy, loosen, and dissolve) the works the devil [has done].”  AMPC.  

This is the good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, In Him we are not only redeemed from the curse, we have been made the righteousness of God (2 Corinthians 5:21, 1 Peter 1:18-19). Our original authority has been reinstated through the finished work of the cross (Ephesians 1:20; Colossians 2:10-16; 1 Corinthians 15:20-22; John 1:12). God the Father said that all authority has been given His Son, and with His Spirit alive inside us, the authority of Jesus to enforce the devil’s defeat, and carry the resurrection power to heal, restore, and give life and love to all, lives in us! 

Every day we surrender to the control of the Holy Spirit within us, and operate in the authority of His written Word, that is engraved on our hearts and minds, we live as God’s representatives and ambassadors on this earth.  We have been given the Name of Jesus, the Name above every other name that - whether it be sickness, poverty, or bondage of any kind or form - must bow its knee to it.  We are His vessels, full of the glorious treasure of His Holy Spirit, empowered, like skilful soldiers, ready to fight the good fight of faith.  We push back the darkness by carrying the light and love and goodness of God everywhere we go, to everyone who is desperate to receive it.  And we will keep pushing and fighting off the evil by demonstrating God’s goodness everywhere, by faith, in His love, until the day of His return.  

What’s more - we don’t do any of this by our own strength.  We do this by His power that is at work within us.  That’s why we must constantly keep our hearts and minds vitally connected to His.  The only way to achieve this, is by keeping the truth of His Word alive in our hearts and minds.  We cannot afford to become ignorant of His truth.  We must constantly build ourselves up in faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, guarding and keeping ourselves in the love of God, that never fails or weakens, under any kind of pressure.  Just as it says in Jude 1:20,21, “But you, beloved, build yourselves up [founded] on your most holy faith [make progress, rise like an edifice higher and higher], praying in the Holy Spirit; Guard and keep yourselves in the love of God...”).

As children of the Most High God, and ambassadors of His eternal kingdom, we cannot repeat history, and once again stoop to deception and place God’s goodness on trial.  Not when we know the Word and profess to live by it.  It’s time to do what we know is right, to stand boldly for what we know to be true.  We must be advocates of His goodness, not ignorant distorters of the truth.

Much love,


Monday, February 19, 2018

God’s Goodness on Trial

Hello everyone,

How can we know the goodness of God when everything around us seems to be evidence of the opposite?  How can a good God exist, when there is such brokenness, and evil done to the innocent and helpless every day?  These are some tough questions frequently asked, and not just in the secret places of peoples hearts, but out load, for all to hear.  Can it be true, that even amongst His own people, God’s goodness is on trial?

In a court of law, a trial is a formal examination of evidence before a judge and a jury to determine the truth.  It seems as though the hearts and minds of mankind have decided to become judge and jury concerning the authenticity of God’s goodness. God’s own creation has placed their Creator on trial.  Perhaps not always blatantly, but certainly in their hearts. Each time disaster or calamity hits, or cruel devastation reaps havoc and heart-ache in the lives of the helpless and innocent, God’s goodness is placed on trial.  

As Christians, I really believe the greatest problem we face concerning knowing and experiencing the goodness of our God, is being ignorant when it comes to His Word.  All the answers we will ever need is found there. The Word provides us with a perspective of the truth, not speculation or assumption based on circumstances.  When we read the Word in faith, by the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we will find what we need to know.  Aren’t we promised that the Holy Spirit will lead us into ALL truth? John 16:13&14 says, “But when He, the Spirit of Truth (the Truth-giving Spirit) comes, He will guide you into all the Truth (the whole, full Truth). For He will not speak His own message [on His own authority]; but He will tell whatever He hears [from the Father; He will give the message that has been given to Him], and He will announce and declare to you the things that are to come [that will happen in the future]. He will honor and glorify Me, because He will take of (receive, draw upon) what is Mine and will reveal (declare, disclose, transmit) it to you.” AMPC.  If we trust Him, the Holy Spirit will reveal the answers to us, but they won’t all come by mental understanding.  It’s our spirits that are able to grasp the truth first.  That’s because we live and move in a realm that consists of and operates by, things seen and unseen to the natural eye.  To know and understand the goodness of God in a world gone mad, is impossible, without having the eyes of our hearts enlightened to the truth of God’s Word.

When we choose to open our hearts to God’s Word of truth, and search for His real character in its pages, we will certainly find Him!  Jeremiah 29:13 &14b says, “Then you will seek Me, inquire for, and require Me [as a vital necessity] and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. I will be found by you, says the Lord,...”. This is a promise He has made and we can rely on, because He does not lie. That’s what Numbers 23:19 tells us: “God is not a man, that He should tell or act a lie, neither the son of man, that He should feel repentance or compunction [for what He has promised]. Has He said and shall He not do it? Or has He spoken and shall He not make it good?”  

And when we do find Him in His Word, we find He is undeniably very good!  In fact, contrary to the opinion of those who don’t know Him, and have not opened their hearts to experience His goodness, or their eyes to see it, there is nothing but good in Him, all the time.  1 John 1:5 says, “...God is Light, and there is no darkness in Him at all [no, not in any way].”AMPC

Choose to take time this week to find the good character of your God, in His Word.  Trust the Holy Spirit to guide you, and lead you into the truth concerning His goodness.  Use the truth you find to form a solid foundation within your soul of how good He is, so that you are always prepared to boldly proclaim the truth when others so quickly and easily, with their words of distorted truth, put His goodness on trial.

Much love,


Sunday, February 11, 2018

Know His Goodness

Hello everyone,

The Word of God, in Matthew 19:17b, says, “There is only One Who is good [perfectly and essentially]—God.”.  By faith, as believers, we hold onto the Word of God and all it says, as absolute truth.  It’s what we base our lives on. We have made the choice, that no matter what our circumstances shout, or what opinions are raging on around us, to believe God’s Word above all else.  

Having said that, we can believe that our God is good, just on the basis of what His Word says about Him.  But you and I know that there is more than enough evidence in our own lives to back this truth don’t we?  We have come to personally know Him in a way where we simply can’t separate Him from His goodness, in spite of the trouble we face, or the challenges we encounter in this life.  Just like the psalmist, we can wholeheartedly say, “Oh taste and see that the Lord [our God] is good! Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) is the man who trusts and takes refuge in Him.” (Psalm 34:8 AMPC).

Today, I would like to take you to a passage of scripture that describes the goodness of God to us in a way that influences us spirit, soul and body.  It’s actually from the Old Testament.  I’m so grateful that the whole of God’s Word, Old Testament And New.  It has all been inspired by the Holy Spirit, and is as relevant for our instruction and encouragement today as it was the day it was written.  Romans 15:4 says, “For whatever was thus written in former days was written for our instruction, that by [our steadfast and patient] endurance and the encouragement [drawn] from the Scriptures we might hold fast to and cherish hope.”

The more time we spend expectantly searching for God and His good character in His Word, the more we will find Him.  Jeremiah 29:13 assures us of this. “Then you will seek Me, inquire for, and require Me [as a vital necessity] and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. I will be found by you, says the Lord,...”

Now, although the particular piece of scripture we are going to look at was written for the Israelites, according to the covenant God made with Abraham, it’s just as relevant for every born-again believer today.  Galatians 3:29 pretty much sums that truth up for us, “And if you belong to Christ [are in Him Who is Abraham’s Seed], then you are Abraham’s offspring and [spiritual] heirs according to the promise.”

So let’s go straight to Jeremiah 31:10-14, and with expectant, open hearts, choose to see God’s good character and intentions towards us.  As we let the truth we find here soak and sink into our hearts and minds, we will become even more convinced of God’s goodness, regardless of what our present or immediate circumstances may appear to be.  And that truth will cause the peace of God to radiate through us and fill us with joy.   That joy becomes our strength to ride out whatever we go through in this life, with a full confidence that God is with us.  Like a good shepherd, He will always lead us through to victory. That’s what 2 Corinthians 2:14 says,  “But thanks be to God, Who in Christ always leads us in triumph [as trophies of Christ’s victory] and through us spreads and makes evident the fragrance of the knowledge of God everywhere,..”

Jeremiah 31:10-12;14, Hear the word of the Lord, O you nations, and declare it in the isles and coastlands far away, and say, He Who scattered Israel will gather him and will keep him as a shepherd keeps his flock. For the Lord has ransomed Jacob and has redeemed him from the hand of him who was too strong for him. They shall come and sing aloud on the height of Zion and shall flow together and be radiant with joy over the goodness of the Lord—for the corn, for the juice [of the grape], for the oil, and for the young of the flock and the herd. And their life shall be like a watered garden, and they shall not sorrow or languish any more at all...I will satisfy fully the life of the priests with abundance [of offerings shared with them], and My people will be satisfied with My goodness, says the Lord.“

One morning I decided to listen to a message on this particular passage of scripture, by Jeremy Pearsons.  It stirred my heart and grew my faith and expectancy concerning the goodness of God in my life.  It inspired me to make a point of really opening my eyes to see the evidence of the goodness of God in every portion of scripture, and use it as a basis for my belief in the truth that He really is a Good God!

“He ... will keep him as a shepherd keeps his flock.”
In verse 10, we see that God is described as a shepherd. That’s something we can bank as our point of reference towards Him. He is diligent, protective and careful concerning us, and as we look through the Word, we find Him to be an extremely good shepherd.  John 10:11, calls Him the Good Shepherd Who risks and lays His own life for His sheep.  In verse 14, He is called a Good Shepherd because He recognises and knows His sheep and they recognise and know Him.  Can anything or anyone compare to this kind of goodness?  The Creator of the universe, so lovingly and willingly giving of Himself to His own creation?  He wants to be intimately, and completely known by us and holds nothing back from us concerning His good character.

For the Lord has ransomed Jacob and has redeemed him from the hand of him who was too strong for him.”
Verse 11 of Jeremiah 31, tells us of God’s goodness towards us with regards to our spirits being redeemed and ransomed from, “... the hand of him who was too strong for (us).”. It’s always important for us to remember that without Christ in our lives, we are weaker than the devil and  at the mercy of our circumstances, or anything that comes against us.  However, with Christ in us, where we are weak, He is strong and He is greater than anyone or anything that comes against us. (1 John 4:4, “He Who lives in you is greater (mightier) than he who is in the world.”)

“They radiant with joy over the goodness of the Lord—for the corn, for the juice [of the grape], for the oil, and for the young of the flock and the herd.”
Here we see God’s goodness manifest in the physical well being of His children.  He provides every need to the point where we become radiant with joy because of His blessing!  I know you can probably think of several scriptures, just off the top of your head, concerning God’s goodness to us, specifically when it comes to His generous provision.

And their life shall be like a watered garden, and they shall not sorrow or languish any more at all...”
One translation says, “...their souls shall be like a well watered garden...”.  The goodness of God touches our intellect, our emotions and our wills.  When we choose to meditate on His promises and believe He is as good as His Word says He is, we will grow an expectation and faith to see that goodness demonstrated in our lives.  Sorrow and the fear of lack or failure no longer dominate our souls, when our minds are full of hope.  We have been given the mind of Christ, we see with His eyes and think His thoughts when we keep our attention on His Word.  Remember, we have not been given a spirit of fear, but love, power and a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7)

...I will satisfy fully the life of the priests with abundance..., and My people will be satisfied with My goodness, says the Lord.“
The NKJ version says the Lord will satiate the life of the priests with abundance.  To satiate is to saturate something to the point that it simply isn’t possible to absorb any more than it already has.  Can you imagine your life being so filled with the goodness of God, that you simply can’t absorb any more of it?  Can you see yourself as being so completely satisfied with the abundant goodness of the Lord, that it just overflows out of your life, into the lives of others?  

This may be an extravagant perspective of the goodness of God made available to us.  I will remind us, however, that we can believe that our God is this good, just on the basis of what His Word says about Him.  

The question is, are we willing to dare to believe and expect it for ourselves?  I do, and my hope is that as you renew your mind to the truth of His Word, you will choose to believe it too.

All my love,


Sunday, February 4, 2018

Know God

Hello everyone,

“God is good! His praise will always be on my lips!” That’s what David passionately declared, while he was being ruthlessly pursued and hunted down by his enemies. It was also the heartfelt song of praise from the beaten and bruised lips of Paul and Silas, after being cruelly whipped and struck, then chained and thrown into a dark, cold and damp prison.  I find it so remarkable that each chose to proclaim the goodness of their God towards them, not based on their immediate circumstances, but on the nature of who they truly knew and believed Him to be.

It’s true that you can’t separate God from His acts of kindness and goodness, but when you truly get to know Him, you find being in His presence is really sufficient to know that He is good, and more than enough, even without His acts.  Paul knew this too, in 1 Corinthians 2:2, he says, “For I resolved to know nothing (to be acquainted with nothing, to make a display of the knowledge of nothing, and to be conscious of nothing) among you except Jesus Christ (the Messiah) and Him crucified.”  And in Philippians 3:10, he says, “[For my determined purpose is] that I may know Him [that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognising and understanding the wonders of His Person more strongly and more clearly], and that I may in that same way come to know the power outflowing from His resurrection...”(AMPC).

Experiencing the goodness of God is far more than having Him meet our needs.  It’s knowing and experiencing Him, ...perceiving and recognising and understanding the wonders of His Person more strongly and more clearly... 

There is nothing more wonderful than knowing God for Who He is, and as His children, having His Spirit alive inside us, there is nothing preventing us from experiencing His presence. In John 14:21, Jesus says that He will manifest Himself to us.  “The person who has My commands and keeps them is the one who [really] loves Me; and whoever [really] loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I [too] will love him and will show (reveal, manifest) Myself to him. [I will let Myself be clearly seen by him and make Myself real to him.]” AMPC.  Our relationship with the Lord was never meant to be mechanical, nor is it religious.  He is a Living Spirit Who desires to have us know, feel and be satisfied by Him.  

I pray that you will hunger after knowing God this way. Jesus said that if we choose Him and His ways, above our own, we truly love Him.  And every heart that is dedicated to live that way will know just how it is to be loved by the Father.  In fact, the very same way Father God loves His Son Jesus, is how we can be loved. That inseparable bond of love is exactly what He offers us.  

If we choose to walk in that, we will find ourselves like David, Paul and Silas; praising Him for His goodness, not based on only what He has already done, and will still do for us, but on the nature of who we truly know and personally experience Him to be.

All my love,