James 1:17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.
The Disciple is tempted by Satan to sin by telling us God is withholding something from us and that God is not good. That is what happened to Eve, David and many other people in the Bible. Verse 17 gives four reasons that God is good:
- God gives only good gifts. Everything good in the world comes from God. Sometimes we don’t immediately recognize that something is good, but time will deliver the verdict maybe even in heaven.
- The way God gives is good. Wiersbe says that the phrase “every perfect gift” can be translated “every act of giving”. Sometimes we give to someone in a less than loving way. But when God gives it is in a loving and graceful way.
- He gives constantly. “comes down”; means God gives constantly. Even when we do not see His gifts, He is sending them. How do we know this? Because He tells us so and we believe His Word.
- God does not change. There are no shadows with God. It is impossible for God to change. He cannot change for the worse because He is holy; He cannot change for the better because He is already perfect. We should never question His love or doubt His goodness when difficulties come or temptations appear.
The first barrier against temptation is a negative one: the judgment of God. The second barrier is positive: the goodness of God. Fear of God is a healthy attitude, but the love of God must balance it. We can obey Him because He may discipline us, or we can obey Him because He has already been generous to us and because we love Him for it.
Are you influenced more by the fear of God’s judgment or His goodness and generosity?