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The statement ‘God is good’ produces an Amen from the believer, and scorn from the skeptical non-believer. The believer says ‘can’t you see all the good that God does from Genesis to Revelation?’ The skeptic says ‘the Bible is full of judgement from Genesis to Revelation’ – both observations are true!
My parents showed me a lot of love as a child, but they also monitored my behavior, examined my motives, judged me and disciplined me appropriately. While romantic love might be blind, parental love is not – parental love is watchful, corrective, judgemental but also caring and protective. The God of the Bible is a parent – Adam is referred to as the son of God not the romantic partner of God.
Good parents provide for all their children, so Psalms 136:1 (Contemporary English Version) says – ‘Praise the Lord! He is good. God’s love never fails.’ and follows it up in verse 25 ‘He gives food to all who live. God’s love never fails.’
Good parents are watchful and corrective, because ‘All children are foolish, but firm correction will make them change’ (Proverbs 22:15 Contemporary English Version). Proverbs 19:15 (Contemporary English Version) continues – ‘Correct your children, and they will be wise; children out of control disgrace their mothers.’
When the scorner and skeptic says – ‘a good God should not judge’ – they are not seeing the nature of God’s relationship with his creation. God loves me and you because we are his children, not his romantic partners.
Good God, our Father who is in heaven, our Father who gives food to all, Give us today our daily bread, despite all of life’s challenges, Amen!