I am fully convinced, my dear brothers and sisters, that you are full of goodness (Romans 15:14, NLT).
The Greek word for “goodness” is used four times in the New Testament and all by the Apostle Paul. This word is not found in any other writing of the ancient world; it is strictly a Pauline biblical word.
Evidently, goodness is important to Paul and should be to us as well. Paul even lists goodness as a fruit of the Spirit . . .
But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things! (Galatians 5:22-23, NLT)
Since living in the Spirit produces goodness, we should be good people. Do we feel like good people? Do we feel better about our goodness after 30 years of walking with Jesus than our first year in faith?
Are we growing in goodness?
In the Greek, the word means “thoroughly kind,” which should be the Spirit-induced nature of all followers of Jesus.
In recent conversations, I’ve caught myself saying to one person about another person, “That person is just a good person.” And often, the person I’m speaking with instantly agrees. While goodness might be difficult to describe and define, we all know a good person when we meet one!
How do we become a good person?
First: Become filled with the Spirit.
Paul writes in Romans 15:14 that we are to be full of goodness. Paul also writes in Galatians 5 that goodness is a fruit of the Spirit. Being full of the Spirit is being filled with goodness.
Second: Live as people of light.
Ephesians 4:9 teaches . . .
Walk as children of Light (for the fruit of the Light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth) (NASB1995).
We walk in the Light by exposing darkness. When we succumb to compromise and temptation, we lose our goodness.
Third: Walk in your calling.
Our God will count you worthy of your calling, and fulfill every desire for goodness and the work of faith with power (2 Thessalonians 1:11, NASB1995).
Calling, goodness, and power walk together.
We walk in our calling and release goodness in our lives by the power of the Spirit. We can test the decisions we make about God’s will for us by asking, “Will this decision increase God’s power for goodness and calling in my life and ministry?”
If I was talking about you — not gossip or slander — but saying to someone, “(Your name) is a good person.” Would they agree? Would you consider me a good person?
Goodness is a testimony that allows others to appreciate our calling while enhancing the effectiveness of our ministry.
Let’s try goodness this week!