Living Stones Series: First Published in All Around Old Bridge Publication – September 2022
By Pastor Lloyd Pulley
Looking to discover the reason for the unimaginable success of the infant nation, French historian, philosopher, and author Alexis de Tocqueville journeyed to America in May 1831—and what impressed him most was her shining religious character! Among the most notable quotes he is credited with is this gem: "America is great because America is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great."
But what is goodness?
Over time the true meaning of the sense of a word can change. For example, the word “amateur” to us means someone less proficient than a professional. The original word in the French means "one who loves, lover." It referenced someone motivated by the love of the sport, art, music, etc.., and was a word highly regarded. Today to be called an amateur could be considered an insult!
The word "good" has also been ground down to such ambiguity that its use is highly discouraged in literature. "Good" is a "good" word to use in many "good" instances—but what "good" is that? And so, saying God is great because God is good is less meaningful today than the weight of the actual word in history, especially regarding character.
When Moses says to the Lord in Exodus 33:18, "Please, show me Your glory.”, God responds, "I will make all My goodness pass before you." The word "glory" means a thing of substance, weight, and worth. It is the opposite of vanity, meaning weightless or "smoke and mirrors." And so, the Lord's response is a surprising one. One would think God's greatness would be connected to His creation and acts of power and sovereignty. Instead, He answers the request to see His glory by revealing His actual substance—who He is—and it all rests upon the fact that He is good!
Today, our "might makes right" world is all about money and power. Sadly, the ones with the greatest insecurities and the least amount of true greatness, rely upon their use of clever deception as a means to gain control. Those who lack real greatness, or goodness, shrewdly grasp dominance by feigning humility, meekness, and love.
How easily people are manipulated into trusting the power-hungry, those who would gladly remove the very thing protecting people—our Constitution. Many churches succumbed, being deceived by the clever distortion of Romans 13 to "submit" to the government, and rolled over to unconstitutional demands during the COVID-19 threat. Pastor Mike McClure of Calvary Chapel San Jose was fined millions of dollars for not complying with those shutdown orders. He and his church finally prevailed in court as he submitted correctly by showing allegiance to the proper authority—first God, and then the Constitution, which protects Americans from tyranny and its many tyrants. Here is a man of true goodness shepherding his people in the fear of the Lord rather than the fear of man. Insecurity and cowardice will result only in the degradation of this next generation.
I encourage everyone to think long and hard about how much weight they have given to the empty promises of those who have grasped power in this state and nation. Sadly, many of those who profess to be the vanguards for the poor and oppressed are the real oppressors. They have acted in Marxist-like ways, doxing and bullying the opposition. These present-day tyrants have moved from weaponizing medicine and education (CRT, LGBTQ) to presently weaponizing the IRS and FBI. And they represent a genuine threat to the people of this nation. They do not have your best interests in mind. Our rights are not derived from the government but from God, our Creator, who is indeed good!
I encourage you to contemplate this as well—the promises of One whose goodness constitutes His greatness and always has each man and woman’s individual highest good in mind.
Our great and abiding hope is the return of the true Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ. When He does returns, however, all hope is lost for the one who opposes Him. Now, while there is time, we can and should do all we can to resist those who have hijacked honest politics and deviated from any true good. Perhaps God will have mercy on their souls. But we need to speak the truth in this world of lies and hope for a national return to the God of the Bible, to learn of His goodness and His salvation, only through the Lord Jesus Christ.
"Christianity is the companion of liberty in all its conflicts—the cradle of its infancy, and the divine source of its claims." Alexis de Tocqueville
Without goodness there is no greatness and without God there is no good. Our freedom is lost when goodness goes and the only answer is a plea to return to the Lord Jesus Christ.