As he was setting out on a journey, a man ran up and knelt before him, and asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone.
Do you ever find yourself in conversations in which you feel you are talking past each other? The rich man walks up to Jesus and asks him a question about salvation…or about self-justification. And Jesus seems to fixate on a single word: Why do you call me good? Who is good, but God?
Job seems to be good. At least he is blameless. He sticks to his claim that his suffering is not justified. It has not been earned. It is not the result of some sin or failure on his part. And, according to the story, he appers to be right. And it appears not really to matter or, at least, not to be the main point. And he laments. “[His] complaint is bitter” (Job 23:2).
Maybe Jesus has a point. Maybe our (relative) goodness—as hard as we try to maintain it—isn’t the main thing. In suffering or in salvation. There is a turn to be made here, a discovery or recovery that holds out hope for our ultimate well-being and wholeness. Can we find it together in these hard times?
Enter into worship.
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