While considering the benefits of life as Christians, an interesting twist struck me. A particular “benefit” is found in the fruit of the Spirit listed in Galatians 5:22 where Paul showed us that one attribute of the life God provides is “goodness”. The twist is found in the definition and it forced me to consider my own lifestyle in pursuit of goodness.
The word translated “goodness” is the Greek word agathosyne. It means, “goodness” just like it is translated. But in looking at the root of that, agathos, I ran across this further explanation from Strong’s:
A primary word; ‘good’ (in any sense, often as noun): – benefit, good(-s, things), well.
I. Of good constitution or nature
II. Useful, salutary
III. Good, pleasant, agreeable, joyful, happy
IV. Excellent, distinguished
V. Upright, honorable
There. Did you notice it in the main definition and in Roman Numeral II? BENEFIT, USEFUL.
The Benefit Of Goodness
When we think of the benefits of being a Christian, should we also consider the benefit to others that we are Christians? Titus 2 tell us that Christians are people who are “zealous for good works”. Does that describe you? What a challenging idea!
The nice part of this is that the concept of being useful or beneficial to others is a broad topic. We can find many ways to do good to others, so let’s not be the kind of people who select a few and demand everyone follow suit in order to be faithful. In fact, since “doing good deeds” is such a broad idea, it ought to excite us to see what creative and engaging ways we can benefit others!
It could be a smile or a handshake. And it could be opening a door for someone, or giving up a seat on a bus. There are literally thousands of ways to be useful and beneficial to others! So here’s the challenge. Set a goal in the morning to see how many good deeds you can do in the day.
Imagine if everyone in the world woke to such a way of life!
But it starts with us.