Why is God so Good?
He said to his brothers, “My money has been put back; here it is in the mouth of my sack!” At this their hearts failed them, and they turned trembling to one another, saying, “What is this that God has done to us?” Genesis 42:28
And they took offense at him. But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his hometown and in his own household.” And he did not do many mighty works there, because of their unbelief. Matthew 13:57-58
“Why does God allow so much suffering and pain in our lives?” It’s a question I hear. And we might more wisely ask, “Why does God allow so much goodness and pleasure?” Before there can be salvation from our sin, we must recognize that we are guilty and deserve punishment. Joseph pushed his guilty brothers to show repentance for their sin toward him. When they did, he showed them mercy by providing the food they needed and returning their money to them. Joseph literally saved his evil brothers from death at no cost to them.
Jesus graciously came into the world to save sinners. He warned of coming judgment. Yet it was in His hometown where He had the most resistance. Those who had seen Him grow up there were perplexed by the authority and wisdom of His teaching, but, instead of submitting to Him, they took Him to be some kind of upstart. They took offense at Him. The consequence of this was He did not do many mighty works there.
Paul wrote to the Romans “…do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance?” (Romans 2: 4). In God’s plan before there can be forgiveness, salvation, and reconciliation, there must be recognition of personal responsibility for sin leading to repentance.
Think about it
Have you seen the goodness of God toward you or do you get stuck on all the suffering you have experienced? Joseph’s brothers got it and received salvation. The people of Nazareth didn’t. Are you more like those repentant brothers or like the resistant Nazarenes? Ask God for a heart changed by Jesus Christ, so that you do not take offense at Him but rather bow before Him in contrite faith.