Doing What Is Good (3 John 1:11)

Pondering 3 John 1:11 today, which in the HRV reads:

Beloved, do not follow what is evil, but what is good is of Eloah {God}, but he who does evil has not seen Eloah {God}.

The implications of this verse are pretty weighty.  Those who do what is evil have not seen God.  Basically, it seems that very quickly we can see if someone has “seen God” based on what they do… evil or good.  But let’s be sure we’re understanding.  Here it is in several other translations:

  • NKJV – Beloved, do not imitate what is evil, but what is good. He who does good is of God, but he who does evil has not seen God.
  • NLT (97) – Dear friend, don’t let this bad example influence you. Follow only what is good. Remember that those who do good prove that they are God’s children, and those who do evil prove that they do not know God.
  • AMP – Beloved, do not imitate evil, but imitate good. He who does good is of God; he who does evil has not seen (discerned or experienced) God [has enjoyed no vision of Him and does not know Him at all].

It seems that “seeing God” has to do with knowing Him and having experienced Him because He IS good.  The thought that all good comes from God is confirmed in Luke 18:19 and Mark 10:18

And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone.

And how do we know what is good? Romans 12:2 shares:

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

So by not being conformed to this world and through testing we learn to discern what is good… that is, what is the will of God.

We also will find in the Word that “good” is connected to works.  Mind you this has nothing to do with earning salvation – that can’t be done, it’s a free gift – rather good works are a result of our salvation, the evidence of it.  This brings to mind what James 2:14-26

What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.

But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder! Do you want to be shown, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless? Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”—and he was called a friend of God. You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. And in the same way was not also Rahab the prostitute justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.

So my question to you today is what are your works saying about you?  Are they declaring to the world that you know God?  Are they good or evil?

I encourage you to choose to be intentional. We are called to be light and salt  – let the Father’s goodness be clearly reflected through our actions that through us, those who don’t know Him yet may come to know Him!

Father, thank You for being good!  Thank You for letting us see You and know You and letting there be fruit that displays our relationship with You.  Help us be transformed by the renewing of our minds and by Your testing that we might know Your will and DO it! Be glorified through our yielded lives.

One thought on “Doing What Is Good (3 John 1:11)

  1. thank you for the word i always need it and sister this ture and jesus sure been telling me same thing,i belive the days of playing church is over and high time also, and love what is good hate what not write thank you blessing to your family and may god bless you more and more judy

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