I Am A Good Person

“You don’t have to be a member of a church to be good.  You don’t have to be a regular attender of the church assembly to be good.  There are good people and bad people everywhere.”  This is the way that some reason.  This is the way that some try to excuse themselves.

How do we respond?  First, in an absolute sense, God alone is wholly good (Mark 10:18; Ecclesiastes 7:20).  “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).

Second, God will not judge by weighing our good deeds and bad deeds in a scale.  “Whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all” (James 2:10).  It is not a matter of one’s good deeds outweighing one’s bad deeds.  “The wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). 

Third, none will be saved by his own goodness (Ephesians 2:8-9).  If we could be counted as righteous by our own goodness, then Christ died in vain (Galatians 2:21).

Fourth, God’s grace is found “in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3, 7, 11; 2 Timothy 2:1; 1 John 5:11).  One gets into Christ by baptism (Galatians 3:26-28). 

Fifth, Christ is the Savior of the body (Ephesians 5:23).  There is one body (Ephesians 4:4).  The body is the church (Ephesians 1:22-23).  “For by one Spirit we were all baptized into the one body (1 Corinthians 12:13).

Sixth, the New Testament teaches that we are to assemble.  “And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much more as you see the Day approaching.  For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful expectation of judgment…” (Hebrews 10:24-27).  The disciples came together on the first day of the week to break bread (Acts 20:7). 

Seventh, there are acts of worship which are to be done together in an assembly with other Christians.  (1) The Lord’s Supper – the disciples came together on the first day of the week to break bread (Acts 20:7).  (2) Giving – it was also to be done on the first day of the week.  It was to be done in such a way that it would not need to be collected when Paul came (1 Corinthians 16:1-2).  (3) Singing – we are to speak to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs (Ephesians 5:19; Colossians 3:16).  (4) Preaching and (5) prayer are to be done in such a way that others in the assembly may be able to understand and be edified (1 Corinthians 14).  Paul says, “Let all things be done for edification” (1 Corinthians 14:26b); “Let all things be done decently and in order (1 Corinthians 14:40).  Implied is that the church assembled.  Moreover, some items of worship are designed to be done together (e.g. The Lord’s Supper, speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs).

Let’s return to the idea of being a good person.  The Bible does speak of good people.  The word “good” is used in different ways in different contexts.  (1) It is used of being fair and kind to others (e.g. Psalm 112:5; Romans 5:7; 1 Peter 2:18).  (2) It is used of relationship with truth, and with God.  Jesus spoke of good trees (Matthew 7:17), good men (Matthew 12:35), good hearts (Luke 8:15), and good servants (Luke 19:16-17; Matthew 25:20-23).  Joseph of Arimathea is referred to as a good man (Luke 23:50-53).  Does this refer to his willingness to be identified with Jesus?  Or, does it refer to His justness and fairness?  Barnabas is referred to as a good man (Acts 11:22-24).  This seems to refer to spiritual connection with God and His word.  It is my belief that true goodness can only be found in relationship with God and His word.  Let us be truly good.

About Bryan Hodge

I am a minister and missionary to numerous countries around the world.
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