#1,152 – Every Good Thing Comes from God (Ezekiel 31:9–11) - Radical

#1,152 – Every Good Thing Comes from God (Ezekiel 31:9–11)

“I made it beautiful,” God says, “in the mass of its branches and all the trees of Eden envied it that were in the garden of God. Therefore,” thus says the Lord God, ” because it towered high and set its top among the clouds and its heart was proud of its height, I will give it into the hand of a mighty one of the nations. He shall surely deal with it as its wickedness deserves. I have cast it out.”
-Ezekiel 31:9–11

Oh. Please don’t miss what these three verses are saying. This is so significant for each one of our hearts and our lives for the way we think about ourselves, the way we think about the world around us.

All good things are evidence of God’s goodness. It is He who makes things beautiful.

So God here in Ezekiel 31 is talking about his judgment coming toward Egypt. But in the beginning, he’s talking about Assyria and how Assyria was like a cedar in Lebanon. And the description is this towering majestic tree, high with branches that were beautiful. The trees of Eden envied it, that were in the garden of God. This beautiful tree, but don’t miss what verse nine says. God says, “I made it beautiful.”

So all that had had came from me, God says, and then he says in verse 10, “Therefore thus says the Lord God, “because it towered high said it’s top among the clouds and its heart was proud of its height.” In other words, Assyria had all of this greatness and Assyria thought that that greatness was attributed to Assyria. To the leaders of Assyria, to the people of Assyria instead of to God who is the one who gave it height.

And God says, “I’m going to give it now and to the hand of a mighty one of the nations and it will be dealt with as its wickedness deserves.” It will be cast out, brought down, brought low is the language we see later in the chapter. So what does this have to do with your life, my life? The way we view our lives, the way we view the world around us, every single good thing that you or I have ultimately comes from God, not from us. We are not the reason for good things in our lives.

You may say, “Well, I mean, I’m the one who did this. I’m the one who did that.” I think about an athlete. So we’re in the middle of major league baseball playoffs and I’m a baseball fan. Think about baseball players. You have quite the gifting to be able to hit a ball, going a hundred miles an hour with a little stick. It’s pretty amazing. They could say, “Well, I work really hard. I get up every morning, 4:00 and train and I eat well and I practice for hours and hours and hours. I’m to get credit for hitting that ball.”

Well, it’s not that there’s nothing good there or hard work that hasn’t been done. Of course, there is. But I would just ask the question, who gave that baseball player the ability to wake up at 4:00 in the morning? Who gave that baseball player breath, a heartbeat at 4:00 in the morning? Who gave that baseball player healthy food to eat? Who gave that baseball player time and skill to be able to work for hours at this sport? Who gave that baseball player every good thing he has? God did. God is the author of every good thing. We read this later in the book of James. Every good gift comes down from God, everything.

So that’s baseball. Think about anything in your life, my life though. Any way in which we might be tempted to pride because of what we have done, what we have achieved, what we have, don’t do it. Strike it down in your heart. It all came from God. All of it. Not half you, half him. It’s all from him. It’s all evidence of his goodness. He makes things beautiful. Ezekiel chapter 31, verse nine. He’s the one who raises up.

He’s the one who blesses. Everything good we have comes from God and we should give him glory for it. When we look around in the world and all kinds of good things that should just lead us into a life of worship. Every good thing you see around you in the world today, realize it’s not because of this person or that person. It’s because of God. It’s because of God who gives every good thing. So live your life in worship. See how this transforms the way you view the world around you.

You live your life just praising God, whenever you see something good, you’re like, “God, you did that. You’re the author of that. You’re the one who made that beautiful.” So God help us to live like this. Help us to live God-centered lives that are constantly overflowing in praise to you for your goodness and our lives Lord, for every good thing we have we give you glory.

For every good thing we’ve done, every good thing we’ve achieved. You’re the one who’s done it. We praise you oh God for your goodness and us, we praise you for your goodness around us. I think about all the good things I see around me in my life and the world around me and other people. You’re behind all of it. You’re behind all of the good. I give you all glory. God keep us we pray from pride and idolatry. Keep us from thinking we’re the source of all these good things when you are the one, who’s the giver of all these things.

Keep us from idolatry. The essence of idolatry, enjoying gifts, exalting gifts, over the giver. You’re the giver of all the gifts. We pray that you would guard our hearts from getting attached to things, people, good things, good people. Help us to give you all glory to attach our hearts to you, to love you with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength because you are supremely good.

You’re the author of all that’s good. You make all things beautiful and we praise and glorify you. We humble ourselves before you and we praise you for your benevolence, for your goodness on display in our lives and for your goodness on display in the world around us. All, all, all glory be to you, in Jesus’ name and the name of the one who makes your goodness possible in our lives, who saves us from the wrath and judgment we wickedness, we deserve. Who saves us from being cast out, who enables us to enjoy your grace and your goodness. We pray all these things in his name. Amen.

David Platt serves as pastor at McLean Bible Church in Washington, D.C. He is the founder and chairman of Radical. He is the author of several books, including Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, Counter Culture, and Something Needs to Change.

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