Goodness Out … Love In

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Why did Jesus want to dispel the thought of human goodness?

Mark 10:17 And as he was setting out on his journey, a man ran up and knelt before him and asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone. ESV

I think the primary reason in lowering the concept of human goodness was to make way for the reality of His love and grace so that we can bear His image to the world around us; the image He has given us in His Spirit.

As in death so in life… 1 Cor 15:49 Just as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the man of heaven. ESV

He is formed in us … Gal 4:19 my little children, for whom I am again in the anguish of childbirth until Christ is formed in you! ESV

We are to be conformed into His character … Rom 8:29 For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. ESV

Our goal is to be like Him … 1 John 3:2 Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. ESV

So, goodness can’t have anything to do with the process of spiritual maturity. Anything we attempt only disrupts the process. As one commentator put it … human touch can only mar the divine output.

Only when we realize that God has removed any of our “perceived goodness” will we be able to understand His grace.  Anything that we might do ourselves has been rejected by God. He removed on the cross the power of one thing that continually works against us in our journey to spiritual maturity … sin.

We cannot have anything to do with the work of the Holy Spirit. It is not of ourselves, it’s the gift of God by His grace that will continue until our transformation is complete. That is what Paul meant…

Phil 1:6 And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. ESV

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