sermon: Our Part in the Sanctification Process (Part Seven): Cultivating Goodness
Yielding to God's Divine Purpose
David F. Maas
Given 13-Jun-20; Sermon #1549; 62 minutes
Genesis 1:4 is the first place in the Old Testament where something is called "good." Both the Hebrew word tov and the Greek word agathos denote that something is good if it fulfills its purpose, doing what it is designed to do. After Adam and Eve succumbed to the temptation of eating from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, the nature of humankind became corrupt, unable to carry out its intended function: to collaborate with God in the manufacture of godly character. When Christ bestows His Holy Spirit to His disciples, He resets their spiritual DNA, enabling them to bear abundant spiritual fruit. God has provided strategies which will facilitate His people's cultivation of the spiritual fruit of goodness, working effectively as Christ's sharecroppers. By utilizing the triumvirate admonitions in Micah 6:8—justice, mercy and humility—the children of Light can (1.) add balance to their behavior, emulating the tenderness and severity of God, (2.) add specificity in their daily repentance, diligently naming and rooting out the specific sins separating them from God, and (3.) emulate the providence God has showered upon them by fully using their God-given gifts to tend to the physical and emotional needs of others. The best strategy God's people can employ to increase their yield of the spirit of goodness is to submit to God's divine purpose for them, formulated before the foundation of the world.
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