God is Good All of the Time
Monday - April 5th
Scripture to Read Today: Psalm 119:65-72
You are good, and what you do is good.
After David's great victory over the giant Goliath, he enjoyed the palace life as he married King Saul's daughter. David was on top of the world. Young women sang songs about him. Every young soldier in Israel wanted to go to war shoulder to shoulder with the young warrior who had defeated the giant. David had been exempted from the nation's taxes for the rest of his life. Things could not have been any better.
King Saul, however, became jealous of David. The attention the king had gotten for years had now been redirected to the shepherd from Bethlehem. According to 1 Samuel chapters 19, 20, and 21, Saul determines to kill David and chases him around the country, trying to do just that.
Finally, in desperation, David even turns to his enemies, the Philistines, for protection from his father-in-law. 1 Samuel chapter 2 tells us David realizes how foolish this move is and flees from the Philistines' capital and ends up in the Caves of Adullam. This is a deep, extensive cave system in the land between the Israelites and the Philistines. Scholars believe David lived alone in this cave for 3-4 months. It is believed that he wrote Psalms 142, 57, and 34 during his stay there in the dark, cold, lonely cave.
With Psalm 34 as the final Psalm written in the cave, most serious students of the Scriptures believe this Psalm is a speech David gives to others telling God's goodness to him during his time in the cave. The group of people who hear David share this from the mouth of the cave would be the people described in 1 Samuel 22:2 as those in distress, in debt, and discontented from Israel. They heard where David was and came there to make him their leader. The next King of Israel becomes the leader of a bunch of renegade losers. Not exactly how David saw this all playing out when, as a boy, God had the prophet Samuel anoint David to be the next king.
One of the most astonishing things David said in that speech he gave at the mouth of the cave after months alone there is recorded in Psalm 34:8. "Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good." What? David? Your father-in-law, the king, is trying to kill you. You got so desperate in your hiding from him that you ran to your greatest enemy for help. You have just spent the last several months alone in a cold, dark, damp cave. You haven't slept in a palace or on a bed for months. How can you say to a bunch of losers from Israel, "Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good?"
David, throughout his life, demonstrated a deep, personal understanding of God's attribute of goodness. At some of the lowest points of His life, He still believed God is good and that He is good all of the time. In Psalm 119:68, David wrote, "You are good, and what you do is good." David never let his personal circumstances define God. He defined his circumstances by the goodness of His God.
The goodness of God describes God as "the source and embodiment of perfect benevolence and kindness." Everything God does is for our good and His glory. He cannot act apart from His goodness. It is who He is.
Before He found freedom from the cave, David could tell others to taste and see that God is good - even when life isn't. How could he do that? He had been through so much hardship and disappointment. David's view of life started with God - Whom he saw as the source and embodiment of good. So, David began to look for the good that God was weaving even when his circumstances gave no hint of anything good. Embracing the goodness of God allowed David to survive and even thrive during trying times.
I do not know what you are going through right now in your life. Maybe it seems overwhelmingly bad and horrible. That is the exact moment you need to embrace and celebrate the goodness of God. He will be good to you - all of the time - even if you can't find any goodness in your life circumstances. In my own life, when nothing good can be found in my experience, I run to God's goodness. It brings a refreshing perspective and hope!
Today, remind yourself that God is good. He is good all of the time. Taste and see the Lord is good!