What defines goodness? An online dictionary defines goodness as : the state or quality of being good. Moral excellence; virtue. Kindly feeling; kindness; generosity . Excellence of quality: goodness of workmanship. The best part of anything; essence; strength.
If your enemy is hungry, feed him. If his is thirsty, give him a drink for in doing so, you will heap coals of fire upon his head.
The bible distinguishes the difference between good and goodness. Goodness is one of the fruits of the Spirit. It’s one of the essential aspects a christian embodies as we follow the teachings of Christ and honor God, our almighty father. Goodness is essentially how we behave and what we do. If you haven’t read the first blog post in this series, you can read what the Fruits of the Spirit is according to Jesus Christ here.
God is Good
Do you remember the prayer: God is Good, God is Great, Let us thank Him for our food. By His hands we all are fed, Give us Lord our Daily Bread. Amen.
God is good and is good towards his people. The fact which he is good towards us, we are good to others. He wants us to live peaceably with all men as stated in Romans 12:18.
He does not want us to soil our spirit by seeking vengeance on our enemies. He loves us so much, that he will do it for us. Think back when you were a small child and someone was cruel to you, whether they bullied you, hit you, or mean. What did your father do? He sought justice for you. He fought for you. He did this because he loves you. This is why God is Good and Good is God.
Goodness in Daily Life
The inherent goodness in us is an example of a gift of the fruit of the spirit. When we see cruelty towards others, we fight and support those who cannot do so for themselves. This innate part of our spirit is so strong, there is even an organization called 7 billion Acts of Goodness. which is a movement to create a global culture of care and compassion. This organization is spread across 30 countries globally and has over 10,000 programs.
Excerpts of Goodness in the Bible
The bible has many passages on goodness covering many topics. Exhibiting goodness daily can be challenging at first, but if we’re diligent and aware before we act, it becomes easier. I find it helpful to think: What Would Jesus Do? Below are a few bible entries according to a specific subject matter.
Romans 12:21 = Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Romans 12:9 = Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.
Psalm 34:14 = Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.
Gentleness / Neighbor/Faith
Galatians 6:10 = Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.
Ephesians 4:19 = Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.
1 Corinthians 15:33 = Do not be misled: Bad company corrupts good character.
Emanuel Swedenborg quotes on Goodness
Emanuel Swedenborg spent twenty years exploring the Spiritual World. He was a Swedish Lutheran theologian, scientist, philosopher, revelator and mystic who inspired Swedenborgianism. You can check out some of his free books here.
Recommended Reading: The Book of Romans
I highly recommend reading these sixteen chapters in full. It’s chock full of the good news of Jesus Christ and an example of how a life is to be lived. A life of righteousness befitting a person through God’s grace and redemption we find in Jesus Christ.
You can read the full version in contemporary english online here.