He loves righteousness and judgment: the earth is full of the goodness of the LORD.
Goodness is a very comprehensive quality. It is love, kindness, benevolence, that which leads you to wish well and to do good to those around you; and the earth is full of the goodness of the Lord because it is so full of His works and Ways, which are the fruits and manifestations of His goodness.
I. THE FORMATION OF THE EARTH SNOWS THE GOODNESS OF GOD. It is like a book, it contains geological leaves which proclaim its history. We read what it has been and what it might have been, as well as what it is. The various forms of life which have appeared upon it have just been introduced at those stages which were adapted to the structure of their being. We are created amid conditions that are just suited to our life, and fitted to make us happy. The light is just suited to the eye, the ear to the atmosphere.
II. The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord, when we consider HOW FULL IT IS OF VARIOUS FORMS OF LIFE. Objects that we despise and trample beneath our feet, and forms of life that cannot be seen with the naked eye are all fearfully and wonderfully made. The microscope, which reveals to you the coarseness and the defects of man's finest works, only reveals to you more clearly and strikingly the wonderful delicacy, and harmony, and beauty of the works of God. And how many forms of life only come into existence during the sunny months or hours that are fitted to make life a luxury, and then depart when it would be a pain.
III. THE AMPLE PROVISION WHICH HE IS CONSTANTLY MAKING FOR ALL OUR WANTS, He daily spreads a feast before every living thing (Psalm 104:21; Psalm 145:15, 16). What goodness the seasons annually reveal to us. Food might have been provided to sustain the life of the body without imparting anything like pleasure in the use of it. But at every stage of its preparation and use it ministers to our enjoyment. There is the blade, the ear, and the waving corn, the leaves, the flowers, the pendent fruit, which harbinger its approach, and which are a beauty and a joy. Then there is the scent which greets the sense of Smell, and the pleasant taste which gives a relish to food; visions of beauty for the eye, and music for the ear.
IV. THE SOCIAL RELATIONSHIPS WHICH HE HAS INSTITUTED, such as family and friendly ties. The instincts and passions, the love and moral emotions which crave these relationships, are of God. Human happiness chiefly springs from these relationships. Who can estimate the amount of happiness there is to-day, not only in the homes of the Christian and the civilized portion of the world, but also in the kraal of the Caffre, the wigwam of the Hottentot, and the hole of the Esquimaux? Even the savage and the wild boast are charmed and tamed and pleased by love for each other and family ties and social intercourse, oven though the home in which they are gathered is only a lair or a den.
V. THE WAY IN WHICH THIS LIFE IS MADE A SCHOOL AND A STATE OF DISCIPLINE FOR THE LIFE THAT IS TO COME. This is not our permanent home; it is only a place in which we are being prepared for a future state. School is good for a child, though the task is often a galling yoke; and so the discipline of suffering is good for man, though at the time it be net joyous hut grievous. There is much from which we shrink in all the trials and adversities and bereavements of life; but Job may be a much better man when he comes out of this furnace than he was when he entered into it.
VI. THE AMPLE PROVISION WHICH HE HAS MADE TO TAKE AWAY OUR SINS. Mercy is one of the sublimest forms of goodness. The earth is full of this goodness, because there is no nation, tribe, or individual excluded from it. Conclusion.
1. The goodness of God ought to be one of the strongest barriers that can be raised up against sin.
2. The goodness of God should lead us to repentance (Romans 2:4).
3. The goodness of God to us should lead us to be good to others.
4. The goodness of God to us in this world ought to inspire us with confidence in His goodness to us in the world to come. The nearer you are to God here the greater is your bliss. Then why should you not say and sing, even as you are passing through the dark valley to the land that is beyond: "In Thy presence is fulness of joy; at Thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore"?
Parallel VersesKJV: He loveth righteousness and judgment: the earth is full of the goodness of the LORD.