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Josh Bovill 12DA 17/12/08
Explain the Biblical idea of the Goodness of God (25).
This essay will explain the Biblical idea of the goodness of God.
The issues that arise with this question are whether the Bible portrays God as morally good/
perfect and whether God commands good things? Or are things good because God commands
Firstly two key ideas emerge about God's goodness in the bible first that God is good, second,
that God's actions are good.
Sections of the Bible for example the Jewish Scriptures and the New Testament paint a clear
picture of God being good. Many passages state that God is good and perfect. God's goodness
is revealed directly to people through God's activity in the world.
God is the creator, and God's creation is repeatedly stated to be good and to reveal God to the
world. By saying that creation reveals God, Christians mean that something is learned about
the nature of God through creation.
God's actions in the world are clearly seen as good in the Bible. The creation myths in Genesis
and Psalms clearly state that God's goodness is visible in the creation and the sustaining of
Furthermore, God's goodness is seen through his actions for the benefit of people, such as
healing miracles or support for God's followers in battle for example at Jericho. The picture
that emerges is of God acting within the world and God's activity is clearly seen to be good.
The goodness of God's actions is not a matter of human judgement, and this is nowhere more
clearly seen than in the story of Abraham's attempt to sacrifice Isaac at the command of God.
The story concerns duty and faithfulness to God, but the fact that God is clearly stated to
challenge Abraham to do something which most people would believe to be immoral
sacrificing a child raises important questions about the nature of God's goodness.
The story of the sacrifice of Isaac clearly presents an image of God as the lord and master of
all, whose will is beyond human comprehension. This story, probably more clearly than any
other in the Bible, indicates that God's commands are what make an action good. The duty of
people is to respond to and obey these commands in this story Abraham's faith in God is put
to the test and what matters is Abraham's response to God's commands. One important
aspect of the story is that faith in God involves surrendering your will and wishes to God.
The goodness of God this God his way is perfect the promises of the Lord proves true he is
a shield for all who take refuge in him this quote is from 2 Samuel 22:31 and clearly supports
the argument that God is portrayed as good in the Bible.
The goodness of creation God saw everything that he had made and indeed, it was very good
this quote is from Genesis 1:31a and clearly supports the argument that God's acts are
portrayed as good in the Bible and that He himself is also.
In conclusion to what I have written about the first point believers in the concept of God and
the JudeaChristian faith must understand that the concept is shrouded in mystery so there
will be things we will not clearly understand about God. But as far as the resource of the Bible
is concerned God is portrayed as Good and Perfect.
Secondly the concept of what makes an action good? Does God command good things? Or
are things good because God commands them?
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Josh Bovill 12DA 17/12/08
If goodness does not originate from God it must instead be an independent standard and God
is the enforcer of this standard.
This view is not supported in Christian tradition, which emphasises the goodness of God's
actions, and the fact that goodness originates from God.
In the Bible God is clearly pictured as being perfectly good and his commands are the moral
law. For example, the Ten Commandments express God's will and state what is good
according to God.…read more