When you commit the outcome of any given situation to God trusting Him, then you’ll find out, beloved, how wonderful He really is.
Alright thank you very much. And hello again dear radio friends. How in the world are you? Yes, this is your friend Dr. Cook, and I’m so glad to be back with you to share from the Word of God. We’re just finishing up our thought in the 23rdPsalm. We’ve come to verse six, “Surely, goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life”. How good the Lord is. The last time we got together just as we finished the broadcast, we were facing the fact that God’s goodness involves His discipline, “Whom the Lord loveth, He chasteneth and scourgeth, every son whom He receiveth”. Well, someone has said ruefully well, Lord certainly must love me a lot because I’m getting a lot of chastening. That isn’t the point, it says,” He scourgeth every son whom He receiveth”. God reserves the right to discipline every single one of us, depending on what we need spiritually. He doesn’t make any mistakes. He knows what is good, “If ye than being evil”, Jesus said, “know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your Heavenly Father give good things to them that ask Him?”. The Lord Jesus knew because He is God, just as much God as God the Father or God the Holy Spirit. He knows how good God is and He said so. God’s goodness involves discipline. It also involves His provision for repentance, not knowing that, “The goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance”.
Let me speak with someone who today feels as though you’ve missed it, you’ve blown it, you have failed so miserably that there isn’t any more hope. The world is full of folk like that and their hearts are breaking with despair because they are saying to themselves, as perhaps one or more of you today may be saying, “no more hope for me, no more second chances for me, it’s all over”. Well, brother, sister it’s never all over. I want you to know that -the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance. There’s always a chance for you to say, “Lord, start me over again, Lord forgive me, cleanse me. I repent of my sin and wrongdoing, stubbornness, self-will and all of the things that have marked me as being out of your will, I repent of that and I want to go your way and once again. “The goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance”. There is a chance for you my friend this very minute, to turn to your blessed Lord. Won’t you do that? I’m speaking to somebody who’s saying bitterly to yourself, “I’ve blown it, it’s all over, I can’t do anything more, I may as well do away with myself. Oh, listen don’t do that! It’s always too soon to give up. God hasn’t given up on you. If He had given up on you, you’d be dead. Oh, God hasn’t given up on you, so don’t you give up on God. You turn to Him in faith, out of the welter and pain of your own failure, and the feeling that there just isn’t any more hope for you, out of all that, you turn heavenward, you turn to your Heavenly Father and you call unto Him, “Call unto to Me and I will answer thee”, our Lord says, “and show thee great and mighty things which thou knowest not”.
Did you know that the possibility of blessing is there for you? God wants to show you something new in your life, some new possibility which He can work out, if you’ll turn your life over to Him. Will you do that? God has a way of taking the failures of the past and working them in to the ministry of the future in His own wonderful grace. Goodness, the goodness of God includes His discipline, and includes His willingness for you to try again. Jonah ran away from the commission God gave him, regarding preaching to Nineveh. Instead, he went the opposite direction, took shipping for Tarshish, but God prepared the storm and then God prepared the great fish, and then as the fish threw Jonah up upon the land, a strange sight no doubt with seaweed in his hair and his face wrinkled now and bleached with the gastric juices of the fish that had been his host for the past three days. Now it said the Word of the Lord came again the second time unto Jonah and said, “Arise, give the preaching that I bid thee”. This time he obeyed. God is saying to somebody listening to me right now, ‘okay now is your chance, do what I told you’. Do what I told you. Start obeying Me. If you’ll do that, you’ll know something experientially, you’ll know something about the goodness of God. God is so good to us in comforting us and loving us. He said, “As one whom His mother comforteth, so will I comfort you”. The goodness of God extends to His wonderful, loving treatment of us in the pressures of life. The Lord is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble. When you’re facing the troubles of life and we all do, no getting away from that, just because your Christian, don’t expect that everything’s coming up roses because it doesn’t work that way. We all face the troubles of life, don’t we? And when they come, then what? Oh, you’re serving a good God, He’s a stronghold. He’s a stronghold in the day of trouble.
Now, the logic of this is, you never would know how good God was if He didn’t allow you to experience all these things that drive you to your knees. If there weren’t any troubles in life, you wouldn’t have any real reason to turn to God, and so He allows some of these things to come into your life, so that you can know how wonderful He is. I got an angry letter from someone not long ago, when I had mentioned in quoting from Deuteronomy, “He led thee and allowed thee to hunger, that He might feed thee with manna which thou knowest not, neither did thy fathers know”, and I made the comment that God let them get hungry so He could feed them so, they would appreciate it when He fed them. Someone was very angry with me and said, “Do you mean to say that God allows these things to happen just so that we can get to know Him better?”, and they were very upset- well that’s alright. You can write to me, it’s okay if you’re going to Heaven, when you get there, you’ll know I was right (laughs) because I was on the basis of the Word of God. That’s God’s Word. He said, “I let you get hungry so I could feed you and you’d understand that I was doing it”. And God lets me cry sometimes so that He can dry my tears away. He lets me get under pressure sometimes so that He can prove that He’s greater than the pressures. I don’t know why this is. I’ll ask God about it when I get to Heaven, but I know that that’s the way that it works. God’s goodness extends to His loving provision to dry my tears and ease the pressures, heal my heartbreaks, and lead me in the way everlasting, that’s part of His goodness. Do you know Him that way? Blessed is the man that says, “Thou trusteth in thee”. You learn about God’s goodness when you start trusting Him, that is to say committing the outcome of any given situation to Him. When you commit the outcome of any given situation to God, then you’re trusting Him and you’ll find out then beloved, how wonderful He really is. Goodness.
Then it says mercy, God’s mercy. Now, mercy has to do, not with something you deserve but something you don’t deserve. What kind of a person needs mercy? Well, technically a person who has done wrong, who has been apprehended in doing wrong, who has been convicted of doing wrong, and who has been sentenced for his or her wrongdoing. That kind of person is a candidate for mercy. You and I are in exactly that position beloved, “For all have sinned and come short of the Glory of God”, the Bible said, “and as by one man, sin entered into the world and death by sin, and so death passed upon all men for that all have sinned”. We are all under the same condemnation, and would therefore, we don’t have anything to commend ourselves to God. We can’t say, “Well God give me a break because of this and this and this”-you can’t do that, there isn’t anything there. All of the coin that you present at Heaven’s Gate is counterfeit. It doesn’t pass. All of the good works that you presented at the Judgement, (Bar of Judgement) is worthless because you got dirt on the deed. It’s like handing a surgeon a scalpel with the spec of rust on it. They only use stainless steel now days don’t they, but in the old days, the kind of steel that was used sometimes would be subject to rusting, and so I took that illustration from the story of a doctor a good many years ago. Somebody handed him a scalpel with a spec of rust on an he threw it on the floor, predictably, ’cause you are not going to use that kind of an instrument on a patient. No, dirt on the deed keeps me from being accepted with a Holy God, and so what I need is not my just desserts. Don’t ask God for what you deserve. When you come to God complaining don’t say, “God, I don’t deserve this, I deserve something better”. You and I don’t deserve anything but judgment. “The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked, who can knoweth? All our righteousness”, Isaiah says, “are like filthy rags”. When I you read that expression filthy rags it goes back to my garage days. I used to be a garage mechanic when I was in college and obviously when you’re working on a car from, time to time you have to wipe the grease and oil off your hands so that you can, keep on working, and you have a rag then by you, always a rag nearby so that after you got through working on any given part of this machine, and your hands were covered with oil, you’d reach for the rag and you’d wipe the excess at least, of oil off. But by and by that rag got so saturated with oil and grease that it wasn’t worth anything more. What would you do it did then? Was it of any value? No. Did you hang it up on the wall? No. Did you frame it? No. Did you sell it? No. Did you give it anybody else? No. What did you do with it? Well we threw it in the stove. That’s what we did. Filthy rags. See, I bring my so-called good works to God, He says, “There’s dirt on the deed”. There isn’t anything I can bring to God that will deserve His consideration. I have to ask for mercy, mercy, mercy. NOT justice. Justice was done at the cross. The Lord Jesus Christ paid your penalty. “God made Him”, Paul says, “To become sin for us, He who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him”. So, beloved, you don’t ask for justice. Jesus took care of the justice part of it. You ask for God’s mercy. Surely, goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life. How does that work out? “He that covereth his sins”, said the wise men, “shall not prosper, but whoso confesseth that forsake them shall have mercy”. The beginning point of mercy is the point at which I decide that I am wrong, I confess it to God and I turn my back on my sin. Mercy doesn’t come to people who ask that they might keep on sinning and get away with it.
Mercy comes to people who repent of their sins and who trust God to cleanse them. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness”. Goodness and mercy. He’s a good God and He is a merciful God. The Lord is my shepherd.
Dear Heavenly Father, we pray that today we may be the recipients of and that we may appreciate Thy goodness and Thy mercy, through Jesus Christ our Lord I pray, Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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