Stewardship: Our Generous God *
I’ve read a number of stories lately about our military warriors, and one of the things that strikes me is the different facets of personality they display.
The same man man can be utterly tender and loving toward his children, and utterly ruthless and violent toward his enemies.
We don’t say that he is two men, nor do we conclude that one facet must (of necessity) cancel out the other. We recognize that, in our complexity, we have very different responses to different classes of people.
Mercy and justice are not contradictory, though their joining in one person is a deep mystery.
When we embrace the truth that God is filled with goodness and generosity, that does not diminish or cancel out His other attributes. He is holy and good. He is kind and righteous.
From Psalm 145:
18 The Lord is near to all who call on him,
to all who call on him in truth.
19 He fulfills the desire of those who fear him;
he also hears their cry and saves them.
20 The Lord preserves all who love him,
but all the wicked he will destroy.
21 My mouth will speak the praise of the Lord, and let all flesh bless his holy name forever and ever.
We need not hesitate to proclaim God’s mercies over all of His creation, and even over his enemies, the rebellious sons and daughters of Adam. But at the same time, God is morally pure. He hates all evil. His goodness and His holiness are fully interwoven, never to be separated.
In the final day of judgment, we will each give an answer for our stewardship of all of God’s gifts. Did we seek to know Him and be faithful (the subject of our studies next week), or did we selfishly squander the riches of His patient mercy?
You cannot have a Bible without the clear division between the righteous and the wicked. And God’s response toward each is morally consistent.
God is near to those who call upon Him in truth. His believing servants experience deep levels of generous goodness that the wicked cannot know, though deniers experience far more of it than they dare to acknowledge.
The psalmist concludes these 21 verses of astonishing goodness by acknowledging that the name of the Lord is holy. When we embrace Him, we embrace all of Him. And because He’s God, we can expect that our minds will struggle to contain His immensity!
* This series is part of a 12-week study on the topic: Being Stewards of God <— (outline). We’re now in week 3, staring directly into the generous heart of God. If you’d like to receive these posts in your inbox, just put your email address in the Email Subscription box on the blog’s right sidebar —>