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Old 20-11-15, 16:14   #10
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Default The Goodness Of God

by David Wilkerson

ďDespisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering: not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?Ē (Romans 2:4).

What does Paul mean when he says this person despises the riches of Christís goodness? The word for despised here means, ďHe could not think it possible.Ē In other words, this believer said, ďSuch grace and mercy isnít possible. I canít fathom it.Ē It didnít fit into his theology. So, instead of accepting it, he set his mind against it.

Why couldnít the ungrateful servant of Matthew 18:23-35 accept the kingís grace? There is one reason: he didnít take seriously the enormity of his sin. Yet, the king had already told him, ďYouíre free. Thereís no more guilt, no more claim upon you, no probation or works required. All you need to do now is focus on the goodness and forbearance Iíve shown to you.Ē

Tragically, a person who doesnít accept love is not capable of loving anyone else. Instead, he becomes judgmental toward others. Thatís what happened to this servant. He missed the whole point of the kingís mercy to him. You see, Godís forbearance and unmerited forgiveness are meant for one thing: to lead us to repentance. Paul asks, ďDonít you realize that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?Ē

Itís clear from the parable that this is the reason the master forgave his servant. He wanted this trusted man to turn away from his own works of flesh to rest in the kingís incredible goodness. Such rest would free him to love and forgive others in return. But instead of repenting, the servant went away doubting his masterís goodness. He determined to have a contingency plan. And despising the kingís mercy, he treated others with judgment.

Can you imagine the tortured mind of such a person? This man left a sacred place of forgiveness, where he experienced his masterís goodness and grace. But instead of rejoicing, he despised the thought of such unmitigated freedom. I tell you, any believer who thinks Godís goodness is impossible opens himself to every lie of Satan. His soul has no rest. His mind is in constant turmoil. And heís continually fearful of judgment.

I wonder how many Christians today live this tortured existence. Is that why there is so much strife, so many divisions in the Body of Christ? Is it why so many ministers are at odds, why so many denominations refuse to fellowship with each other?
I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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