Sunday February 2, 2020
Chapters 5-7 in the book of Matthew contain the widely known Sermon on the Mount. The sermon presents the way of righteous living for those who are in Him. The Beatitudes (Matt.5:3-12) describe the inner qualities of a follower of Christ and promise him blessings in the future. If we live for Christ and live like Christ, we become a light that can guide others to Him. One way to do that is to become a do-gooder.
Now there are times when our good deeds are done in secret, known only to the Father and rewarded by Him. But then there are shared goodnesses that are accomplished openly to demonstrate His love toward others. They also demonstrate our love for Him and our obedience to His Word. (See WORD WISDOM for a deeper study of obedience)
We know that we have no intrinsic good in us besides Him (Ps.16:2), and that apart from Him we can do nothing that is purely good. But with God in our hearts, goodness will pour forth from our hearts.
A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks. (Lk.6:45)
How do we accomplish such a great and lofty task? Paul commands us to “seek after that which is good for others” (1 Thess.5:15). “Seek” literally means to run after it and chase it until we catch it. Peter admonishes us to be zealous for what is good (1 Pet.3:13-15). Again in Titus 2:7, Paul tells us that we should show ourselves as an example of good deeds. Paul explained to Titus, Christians are expected to practice what is good in order to “meet pressing needs” (Titus 3:13-14).
Diligently help Zenas the lawyer and Apollos on their way so that nothing is lacking for them. Our people must also learn to engage in good deeds to meet pressing needs, so that they will not be unfruitful. (Titus 3:13-14)
In this particular context, Paul was discussing hospitality; but the application can apply to many things. When there is a work that needs to be done, we must learn to meet these needs. Paul wrote elsewhere, “So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of faith” (Gal.6:10). We must focus on the opportunities that are before us so that we may be “bearing fruit in every good work” (Col.1:10).
We are going to have an influence on others…either for good or bad. Therefore, we need to consistently show an example of good deeds. But here’s the thing…being a do-gooder does not only bless the one who receives but the one who gives as well. In fact, someone of great goodness will find great favor with the Lord and will receive freely from the greatest do-gooder, God Himself.
The great theologian, John Wesley said, “Do all you can, to all the people you can, in all the ways you can, as often as you can, for as long as you can.” Now that’s a do-gooder!