The Mystery of God - His Goodness
The Mystery of God - His
The Mystery of God - His Goodness
by Bill Johnson in his book, GOD IS GOOD
Kallistos Ware is quoted saying: “It is not the task of Christianity to provide easy answers to every question, but to make us progressively aware of a mystery. God is not so much the object of our knowledge as the cause of our wonder.”
What we don’t know is sometimes as important as what we do know. A trust is proven most in the midst of confusing circumstances with their corresponding questions. What we have come to know to be true about God is greater than all the circumstantial evidence that denies it. We need to remember the purposes of God at this point in our lives…it’s crucial.
To be a people who can carry the beauty and the glory of God in the earth, we must be proven as a people of trust. The measure of this trust we live with becomes the most evident when things turn out differently than what we expected or prayed for.
This should lead us to a place of greater surrender and not greater frustration. God is predictable in that He is completely true, loving, faithful, honest and joyfully excited about our future. He knows the beginning from the end, and He knows the best route to take in live. God will not be controlled by anyone. As His servants, we will be constantly in awe …about His perspective.
Learning that God doesn’t owe us anything, and He is always faithful to His Word should lead us into an area of profound trust in Him. It is this trust that makes us powerful.
God has a different value system than we do. Our relationship with Him is always on His terms, but His terms are always for our best. “Without faith it is impossible to please Him.” (Heb. 11:6) Bold faith stand on the shoulders of quiet trust. Faith is an activity of the heart. Real faith comes through yieldedness, surrender, and not striving. Faith is superior to reason in that it gives our intellect a context in which to grow safely - in the knowledge of God. The Eternal God is the cornerstone of all logic and reason.
God cannot be comprehended. The finite will never envelop the infinite. He is to be known by our relationship. Almighty God seeks for us to know Him. Jesus is received and celebrated by a perfect Father who is always good. Every true believer is equally received and celebrated, because we are in Christ. To know God is the greatest privilege given to anyone. The cross of Jesus is the ultimate invitation to know God.
To better understand this mystery of the head vs. the heart is given in Ephesians 3:19, “[That you may really come] to know [practically, through experience for yourselves] the love of Christ, which far surpasses mere knowledge [without experience]; that you may be filled [through all your being] unto all the fullness of God [may have the richest measure of the divine Presence, and become a body wholly filled and flooded with God Himself]!” It is experiential knowledge meaning to comprehend that knowledge. That we might know the love of God by Experience in a away we could never comprehend or fully understand.
One of the main responsibilities of the Holy Spirit is to teach us. BUT, we must require of our own hearts that the knowledge of Him takes us to Him. Then we grow in divine wisdom.
Faith doesn’t deny a problem’s existence. It just denies it a place of influence. I don’t have the right to adjust my assignment from God to what I think I am qualified for or can do well.
It’s OK not to have answers for questions. God is attracted to weakness and brokenness (not broken and depressed), but broken because of tenderness to the only one with the right to rule over our lives. It is the Father, who is good beyond measure, that comes through bringing healing to our brokenness. The outcome is strength, peace, and breakthrough in our lives.
The devil tries to steal, kill, and destroy us throughout our lives, but God answered that in Proverbs 6:30-31 “Men do not despise a thief if he steals to satisfy himself when he is hungry; But if he is found out, he must restore seven times [what he stole]; he must give the whole substance of his house [if necessary—to meet his fine].” Sometimes, it requires time in the secret place, crying out for the more that God had promised…not begging…God will keep His promises. We need to recalibrate our own value system needed to be consistent with His.
The life of trust is to be built, not upon principles or theories, but upon the solid rock called God’s goodness. Sometimes the conflict in our souls, or the confusion in our minds, is to bring us face to face with that which s the most reliable and dependable - the goodness of God. Ps. 27:13 “[What, what would have become of me] had I not believed that I would see the Lord’s goodness in the land of the living!”
Devotion, that realm of established trust, is something God can build upon. What we really believe about Him becomes evident in trial. When our will is surrendered to His purposes, all of creation gets closer to the Healing God promised, as His people find out who they are. (See Romans 8:19) We are to reign with Christ. Our privilege in life is to serve with the heart of a king and rule with the heart of a servant. We need to have the wisdom to realize what God has given us access to and what is to remain entirely in His possession. This is where trust is proven. Deut. 29:29 “The secret things belong unto the Lord our God, but the things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all of the words of this law.”
Miracles happen entirely by His grace. They happen when there was great faith, as well as when there was simple obedience in prayer but no real expectation of a miracle. It’s all by grace! Trusting God enough to embrace mystery as a gift is one of the quickest ways to come to know this God who is beyond knowing, whose ways are always good. The one thing we’re assured of in walking with the Lord is the outcome. WE WIN! Because of this, adversity, conflict, or problems need not lead to panic or despair. I know ahead of time how it turns out. Romans 8:28 “We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose.”
God’s goodness is bigger and more valuable than creation itself. It is the most unexplored reality in existence. Surrender is so entirely a grace expression of Heaven that no one could ever take the credit for what God has done in us. Although the goodness of God will never be conquered, in the sense of comprehended or controlled, it must be explored. Psalm 33:4-5 “For the word of the Lord is right; and all His work is done in faithfulness. He loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of the loving-kindness of the Lord.” We have a responsibility to steward the knowledge of His goodness. My thought must be consistent with this reality. I am the one that must change. I must think consistently with who He is and what He is like. Anchoring our souls in everything but His goodness is the ultimate waste of time. Moses said in Ex. 33:13 “Now therefore, I pray You, if I have found favor in Your sight, show me now Your way, that I may know You [progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with You, perceiving and recognizing and understanding more strongly and clearly] and that I may find favor in Your sight. And [Lord, do] consider that this nation is Your people.” Discovering what He is like is the invitation of God to deepen the relationship with God. The relationship with God is built upon His goodness. That discovery allows us the opportunity to take greater and greater risks to pursue the abundance that is God Himself, for He is faithful and true. I must think consistently with who He is and what He is like, or I will feed my soul on the inferior, living with the assumption that what I think I know is true.
Mark Twain said that the 2 most important days in a person’s life are the day he is born and the day he finds out why. Bill Johnson says there are 3 areas that he believes he owes the world:
An encounter with God.
A message of good news
Maintaining an awareness of Him, with the willingness to do whatever He wants, makes this challenging goal doable.
Wisdom is to enable us to reign in life. That doesn’t mean to reign over people. Wisdom does little to help the power-hungry person. Instead, it shows us how Jesus, the person called Wisdom, (I Cor. 1:30) , lived in such triumph and victory as the Son of Man. To reign in life means money doesn’t rule me. I’m not controlled by the fear of man, but instead I live in the fear of God. Circumstances don’t run my life, I reign over circumstances. I live with the tools to have a healthy family. This is the role and benefit of wisdom. It enables us to model a life of victory that has the potential to attract those whose lives are ruled by all these little foxes that spoil the vineyards of their lives. Wisdom puts us in a place to ring others into our personal victory. Any chance of the glory of God being manifest in and through us will be according to the reality of Jesus Christ abiding in us (Col. 1:27) Just as He is interceding for us, so we, too, must pray for the mercy of God to be expended to others in the same way it was given to us. (Ro. 8:34) We are being transformed into the likeness of the One who has been raised from the dead, has ascended to the right hand of the Father, and is glorified before all things in Heaven and on earth. We are to provide an example for people to follow through purity, power, and presence. These influences change everything.
Here is the model for all government, displaying His two basic purposes - ruling and serving. First we rule to protect, and second we serve to empower. I Peter 2:13-14 “Be submissive to every human institution and authority for the sake of the Lord, whether it be to the emperor as supreme, Or to governors as sent by him to bring vengeance (punishment, justice) to those who do wrong and to encourage those who do good service.” Deep personal fulfillment comes to everyone when there is this kind of righteous leadership. The Kingdom of God is the ultimate example.
God is better than we think!