Good In Every Way

April 24, 2016
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Listen while you read: "How Sweet The Name Of Jesus Sounds"1 (Lyrics)

Genesis 1:31a – Then God looked over all he had made, and he saw that it was very good! (NLT)

I grew up in a family where dad regularly berated things that he felt threatened his Christian lifestyle. Theatres were places where curse words were said or sexual scenes displayed. They must be avoided. Not until much later in life did he learn to appreciate the arts. The political realm was a home for crooked individuals who were always looking out for special interest groups — many of whom disagreed with his beliefs. Perhaps he forgot that government was established by God. Playing cards and dancing were forbidden. I suppose that he overlooked the Scripture where David danced before the Lord. Sunday was the Sabbath and sacred. Mom could cook, but no buying groceries, working in the yard, or washing clothes. I guess he didn't see the place where Jesus said that the Sabbath was made for man.

When God looked over His original handiwork, He pronounced it good. This would have to include everything that would eventually develop from the original creation: government, the arts, competitive events, theatre, technology, electronic games, education.

Dad tended to throw out the baby with the bathwater rather than just letting the dirty water out so that clean water could flow in. He wasn't the only Christian who is guilty of polarization — the either/or scenario. If I coach a softball team that is suffering from one player's bad attitude, I don't dissolve the team. I work on its direction by working on the one player. If the government leaders of my particular country, state, or town are corrupt, I don't advocate dissolution of government. I work to change the present one. If my child's school is getting poor reviews, I shouldn't bash education. I should work to better it.

Most of what has developed out of God's original creation is inherently good. Sin is the problem and the reason that creation heads in the wrong direction. Rather than trying to do away with or completely re-create what God has already created, I must work to enhance His fingerprint by being salt and light in my world.

What can you do to cleanse those good things that sin has damaged?

Prayer: Father, thank You for Your good creation. Show us how we can work to purify what sin has tainted. Amen.

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About the author:

Martin Wiles <>
Greenwood, South Carolina, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks for writing this devotional. Blessings.

    I really enjoyed your comments today, and agreed with you. Thanks.

    I appreciate very much your very positive thoughts. You are absolutely correct.

    Thank You Martin for your devotional today. This a fine challenge as we look forward. Blessings.

    Amen. Thank you for your message.
    God Bless.

    Well done, Martin. Thank you, a good start to the Sabbath.

    Martin thank you for another wonderful devotional. You never fail to give me food for thought. Much love to you and your family.

    Dear Martin Wiles,
    Thank you for the fine devotional. May we be on the repair and construction crew for Jesus sake.
    Keep writing.

    Good morning Martin. Thank you for your Devotional which I have read and re-read. We had a similar upbringing, in my case in a Scottish “Free Church” family. You are correct in your statements that God made everything “good”. It was Satan who convinced mankind to mess it up! Personally, I don’t think we can “purify” sin by our selves. We simply acknowledge our sins before Jehovah through His Son, and believe that He will keep His promise of forgiveness.
    Yes, the world is certainly a sin filled place, and most of the driving force is money and power!
    Let us all pray that Jehovah will deal with these issues in His own way and in His own time frame, and allow us to be His humble but faithful helpers. Amen.

    Hi Martin,
    You could have been talking about my parents. We were not allowed to go to movies for the reason you quoted. We never went to dances. Sunday sports were out, even listenening to the radio when I was a boy was not allowed. The only thing we were allowed to do on Sunday was go to church and read a book (a good book) even playing with other children was frowned upon or disallowed. As a result I spent a lot of time indoors painting and drawing, which I still do on occasion.
    Having said that, my wife and I never shop on Sunday, never fill the car up on Sunday. When we go on vacation I never book a trip which flies on Sunday. However in a resort or on a cruise, like we did last February, we do things which we do not do at home, like eat in the restaurant, but we curtail our activities other than that.
    Good habits learned young are hard to break in old age. A good thing really!

    Great message Martin, and very well written. I appreciate your thoughts and the biblical insights you shared.

    Hi Martin,
    it is sad that that many pulpits today do not address sin and its effects.
    Rather they disregard the topic completely or pronounce guilt trips than deal with the real issues.
    I enjoyed the way you presented your case.

    Hello Martin:
    I enjoy reading your devotionals. This one is particularly well-written and carefully thought out.
    I find that there is a lot of throwing out the baby with the bath water these days. I particularly am thinking of the mentally ill and disabled in both our countries that no longer have institutions to support them. I grew up in such an institution as a blind child where the government of Canada provided me with the education of a rich man’s child. My parents were poor immigrants and had no clue what to do with me. In the 1950’s all blind children went to such schools. I got free music lessons, free skating lessons, swimming and trips to museums and theaters while my parents struggled to look after the other siblings. While I’d be remiss in saying that I always liked it or that the school was perfect, I thank God, my country’s government and the wonderful people who cared for me and taught me. Many of them were dedicated Christians who gave far more than duty required. They also became dear friends and saw me through a failed marriage, the raising of children and the acquisition of a Master’s degree.
    So when I see homeless people on the street or hear about folks who are sent to prison because there is no other place for them to go, I wonder how it would have been had we had the wisdom to fix the institutions our forefathers had put in place. I know many blind folks who are independent, living in their own apartments with no friends but their computers and no real community around them. Might they have been better off in an improved facility rather than being lonely out on their own?
    I think that your devotional touched on a very important premise. We need to look at the whole picture when we deem something to be good or bad. God knows there is way too much polarized thinking these days.
    Thank you.

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