“No one does good, not even one.”
This is God’s assessment of our capacity to do good enough to earn salvation (Romans 3:12). No one can do it… not even the nicest grandmother who knits the perfect Christmas socks! Not even one person. But what about all the good we see around us – caring police officers, diligent teachers, Chick-fil-A workers who say “My pleasure”? Aren’t they doing good? Well, yes. Sort of.
When we think of good, we are viewing good in a relative sense. Some people are nicer or more helpful than others. And that is good. But when God defines good, He is referring to His perfect holiness, a kind of goodness that is beyond our ability to independently produce. Our “goodness” is riddled with ulterior motives and self-serving purposes. This is why “no one is good except God alone” (Luke 18:19). And this is why we need to be rescued. We have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). We, like Adam and Eve, have ignored what God says is “very good” (Genesis 1:31) and have attempted to re-define good on our own terms, claiming to be “like God” (Genesis 3:5-6).
God could have just cast us away like a chef disposes of food that has gone bad, but He didn’t! He invites us to “taste and see that the Lord is good! Blessed is the man [woman and child] who takes refuge in Him!” (Psalm 34:8) God gave us His Son, Jesus, the only person to live a sinless life and die in our place. This is how good He is! He switched places with us. Jesus took our badness on Himself so He could give us His goodness (2 Corinthians 5:21). He did this when we were His enemies and wanted nothing to do with Him (Romans 5:8). Who does that? And He invites us to repent of our own self-salvation plan and to trust Jesus.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:8-10
He saves us apart from good works. But then He creates us “for good works.” He does in us what we could never do for Him.
We long for every person to hear and respond in faith to this good news! We are a church made up of messed up people who are tasting and seeing that the Lord is good. If you would like to learn more about how to have a relationship with Jesus, please contact us at (864) 609-5321.