Among the many false opinions that have developed concerning the nature of God, lies one that speaks about God’s goodness. Many people envision God as a cosmic killjoy, like a cop standing in the middle of all the world’s traffic. He’s ready to blow His whistle when one car veers slightly to the left or right.
People who have this view of God would basically see Him as the spoiler of all their fun.
“Stop that!” “You can’t go there!” “You don’t need those nice things!” “One more time doing that and I am going to zap you!” “Don’t you dare cross that line!”
At the heart of this belief people are really asking the question, “Does God really want to bless me and meet my needs?” In other words, “Can I truly believe that God wants to provide for me?” Well, the answer from the Bible is that He does in more ways than we can imagine.
Cosmic Killjoy or Not?
Psalm 84:11 gives some insight into this God who controls the universe. And it doesn’t describe him as a cosmic killjoy in any way, shape or form. Instead it says,
“For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord will give grace and glory; No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.”
First, as part of God’s basic nature:
1. He acts as a sun. Ever bash your toe as you walk through the hallway in the darkness of the night? Ouch!
Wish you had carried a flashlight? Well, one function of the sun is to provide light. This light obviously aids our ability to see. So, we have a better sense of direction and of our surroundings when there is light enough to direct our path. God acts in this way for us as He illuminates our mind so that we can clearly see the path he wants our life to follow.
2. He acts as a shield. A shield is piece of armor generally carried on the arm that serves to defend against attack from an enemy. It is able to deflect weapon blows and block all the arrows and bullets that come one’s way. The cool thing here is that we don’t actually have to carry the shield. God serves in that capacity for us…He is actually the shield. And this shows us that he is really on our side…He is part of our team. He wants to defend us, not strike us down.
Second, in what He provides for us:
1. Grace. This refers to God’s unmerited favor. God will show his love, mercy, favor and goodwill to all of us. He will sustain us through difficult times in our life. He will give us the strength to endure. We don’t earn this. He just gives it to us.
2. Glory. God will lift us up. The deeds we accomplish for Him will not go unrecognized. There will be honor given one day to those who have spent their life serving Him.
Finally, His action step:
1. Bestowing abundant goodness. The verse says “no good thing will [God] withhold.” But wait, there is one interesting little caveat here. We finally have a role in what we receive. Did you catch that? The last phrase of the verse says God will withhold no good thing to those who walk uprightly. So it would seem our level of willingness to walk obediently and live a godly life determines the level or the extent to which God measures out goodness to us. Walk obediently…more blessing. Walk less obediently…less blessing.
God knows what is for our good. His promise is to bestow that on us. I greatly prefer this type of God directing the traffic of my life.
Questions: Have you ever viewed God as a cosmic killjoy…like a cop ready to strike you down? If so, how did your view of God change?
Prior Post: Chew On This For Awhile