In Romans 11:22, Paul uses opposites: goodness and severity. The apostle means that God's character runs the gamut from overt compassion to utter harshness.
God seems to display irreconcilable contradictions, such as great wrath and deep compassion. Yet these are not contradictory traits but rigorous responses.
Charles Whitaker observes that modern Israel, instead of expressing righteous indignation at the breaking of God's Covenant expresses a juvenile anger about the consequences of what their sins brought about. Sighing and crying involves far more than wallowing in worldly sorrow. As God's called-out ones, we must realize that on …
The Bible oftentimes speaks in polar opposites: good and evil, light and darkness, heaven and earth. A pair of opposites like these, called a merism by theologians, is destruction and restoration. Citing many prophecies, Charles Whitaker points out that restoration often follows swiftly on the heels of God's wrath, providing us …
When we (following Jesus' example) display the way of God in our lives, bearing His name, and keeping His commandments, God's glory radiates in our lives.
Good is a term we use very loosely, yet it is a major characteristic of God! It is defined in terms of what God is: absolute goodness! This study gives a general overview of this sixth fruit of the Spirit.
Love motivates the two intrinsic parts of God's holy character—goodness and severity, as He seeks to rescue humanity from the consequences of sin.
God does not like to inflict punishment on people, but because of sin, He is obligated to correct. But as quickly as God punishes, God restores and heals.
Among the spiritual realities that a faithful Christian must understand is God's sense of justice. The deaths of Nadab and Abihu are a case in point.
Because we would die from exposure to God's glory, the name of God, reflecting His characteristics, is the only way we can approach God.
There is an aspect of God's goodness that is rarely associated with goodness. As surprising as it may seem, God's goodness can be feared! Martin Collins explains why this is so.
God gives grace from start to finish in a person's relationship with Him. It cannot be limited merely to justification and His forgiveness of our sins.
At times, God has to ignite our conscience and undermine our self-confidence to get our attention in a similar fashion as he did to Joseph's brothers.
The Shekinah, the pillar of cloud and fire, depicts God's visible presence and protection. Yet His glory is manifested in many other ways as well.
Goodness is a nebulous concept, used to describe everything from a tasty snack to God's sublime character. But God's character defines what goodness is.
Because even Satan can transform himself into an angel of light, we must be careful not to assess goodness by surface appearances. God's goodness is our pattern.
Using the army boot camp analogy, Richard Ritenbaugh teaches that God places us through a similar humbling process, causing us to look at our sins in a spiritual mirror, contrasting our lives with the sinless life of Jesus Christ. In this process, we must (1) put out evil, (2) put on the new man, empowered with the mind of …
Grace implies empowerment for growth. It is the single most important aspect of our salvation, and His giving of it is completely unmerited on our part.
The demise of an institution can result from the irresponsibility of its constituents; if one member sins, the whole body experiences the effects.
We must adopt God's perspective on time, developing longsuffering and developing tranquility under adversity, waiting patiently on God.
John Ritenbaugh, cuing Revelation 15:3-4, focuses on God's absolute holiness, demanding total veneration, drawing a clear and logical connection between goodness and holiness. God demands that we align ourselves with His holiness, separating ourselves from the evil, corruption, and filth of the world. Becoming holy involves …
Determining the will of God is difficult to do unless we know the character of God. Holiness is the foundation for all of the other traits of God.
The fear of God is the first line of defense, keeping us from profaning God's name, tarnishing the image of the Lord, and defending us from pain and/or death.
Martin Collins, maintaining that there never has been, and never will be, another death like Jesus Christ's, reminds us that Our Omniscient God, who cannot sin, knew that we would sin and, therefore, pre-ordained a sacrifice that would satisfy all legal requirements, but would also motivate us to repent of sin and pursue …
We must not limit God's glory to something physical like fire or cloud, but rather recognize God's glory as radiating from His character, which we can share.
We must have established some relationship with God before we can rightly fear Him. A holy fear is the key to unlocking the treasuries of salvation and wisdom.
Jeremiah compares studying and meditating upon God's Word to physical eating, enabling a person to receive spiritual energy, vitality, and health.
Martin Collins, continuing the series on the awakening of guilt in Joseph brothers, focuses on a message by Rabbi Daniel Lapin, who proclaimed that Moses never just said, "Let my people go" The second part of this request was "that they can worship God in the desert." Egypt has long served as a metaphor of …
We may have guilty consciences like Joseph's brothers and self-pity like Jacob, but we can break through if we acknowledge God as Jacob and Elisha did.
Richard Ritenbaugh insists that a raw display of emotion and exuberance does not necessarily glorify God. What we do to glorify God will reflect just how highly we esteem Him. Because God has redeemed us (purchasing us with an awesome price), we must become living sacrifices, no longer joined with the world—a condition …
Both the time element and the significance of the Great White Throne has been lost on most of 'Christianity' because it refuses to keep God's Holy Days.
David Grabbe, focusing on the unsearchable judgments of God described in Romans 11:33, points out that sometimes human nature sees God's decisions as unfair, as in the slaying of Uzzah, the favoring of Isaac over Ishmael, the favoring of Jacob over Esau, or the hardening of Pharaoh's heart. When we internalize the fact that all …
Richard Ritenbaugh, reflecting on America's Pledge of Allegiance, originally written in 1892 by Francis Bellamy, a Baptist minister and Christian socialist, suggests that the current embracing of socialist values could have had earlier sources than we originally thought. Interestingly, the original arm position, with the arms …
God has given the nations of Israel time to repent, but the carnal mind translates more time into license to carry on. Thus, God warns about complacency.
Biblically, patience is far more than simple endurance or longsuffering. The patience that God has shown man gives us an example of what true, godly patience is.
The Lake of Fire (Second Death or Third Resurrection), dreadful as it initially appears, produces both immediate as well as ultimate benefits or good.
Richard Ritenbaugh, asking why Christians should ruminate about sorrow and grief instead of focusing on happy thoughts, reminds us that death and suffering are staple features of the human condition and that we need to learn how to handle grief and loss, thereby becoming a witness for those who do not yet know the truth. Isaiah …
We must emulate the ways of God, demonstrating justice in our lives, thoughts, words, and deeds, preparing to judge in God's Kingdom. Not all sins are equal.
As we approach the coming self-examination prior to Passover, we can apply six significant lessons taught to ancient Israel through the book of Lamentations.
Many think the Third Commandment merely prohibits profane speech. In reality, it regulates the purity and quality of our worship of the great God.