The fool says in his heart, 'There is no God' (Psalm 14:1).
There are some people who say, “There is no God.” Do we become wise the moment we say, “There is a God?” Let’s think about what we mean when we say, “There is a God.” We need to learn to move beyond the foolishness which says, “There is a God” without really listening to what God has to say to us. We need to learn to listen to God if we are to be led out of the way of foolishness and into the way of wisdom.
There are many people who do not dismiss the idea of God, but they rarely turn to the Word of God to learn more about Him. They like to draw some comfort from the words, “He’s got the whole world in His hands”, but they feel very uncomfortable when they’re reminded that “it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Hebrews 10:31). When they’re asked if they believe in God, they tell us that “there must be something, somewhere.” When they’re asked what they believe about God, they have nothing else to tell us about Him. Their ‘god’ is not the God of salvation. Their ‘god’ is “an unknown god” (Acts 17:23).
There are also some people who have much to say about “God.” When, however, we look closely at what they say about God, we find that their ‘god’ is very different from the God of the Bible. They use the word “God”, but they do not listen to what God’s Word has to say to them.
Some people hold on to the idea that “there is a God” but they refuse to let God get too close to them. They like the idea of God. It makes sense of their life. There is, however, something about God that they don’t like. They don’t like the idea that God might have something to say to them about the way they live their life. They don’t say , “There is no God”, but there is very little about their way of life which suggests that they really believe that “there is a God.”
Concerning such people, God’s Word says this: “God is not in all their thoughts” (Psalm 10:4). We could express this in another way: “God is in very few of their thoughts.” When thoughts of “God” do come into their minds, they are rarely thoughts which bring glory to God. When our minds are not being fed with the truth of God’s Word, we are wide open to thoughts of God which do not bring glory to Him. Such thoughts do not come from God’s holy Word. They come from “the god of this world” who “blinds the minds of the unbelieving” so “that they might not see the light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God” (2 Corinthians 4:4).
What are we to say about those who say that “there is a God”, yet refuse to take seriously what He says to them through His Word? They may not actually say, “There is no God”, but their whole way of living is self-centred rather than God-centred. At the heart of their life, there is “a God-shaped blank.”
The real God is more than just an idea which makes sense of our life. He is not only the God who loves us. He is also the God who changes us. Many people like the idea that God is love, but they don’t like the idea that God calls for a change in their way of living.
We read the words, “The fool has said in his heart to say, ‘There is no God.’” Let’s not be too quick to say, “We are wise. We believe in God.” True wisdom doesn’t stop with saying, “There is a God.” True wisdom knows that “faith without works is dead” (James 2:17).
If we are to be really different from those who say that “there is no God”, we must commit ourselves to both listening to the Word of God and doing the Word of God (James 1:22).
When the Psalmist speaks of unbelief – “There is no God”, he speaks also of sin – “All have turned aside, they have together become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one” (Psalm 14:3). We say, “There is no God” when we do not “seek God” (Psalm 14:2). We do not seek God when we do not take time to listen to what He is saying to us through His Word.
We must note what God is saying to us in the first three verses of this Psalm 14 – “all have turned aside … there is no one who does good, not even one.” We are all sinners – every single one of us! None of us can look down on others and say, “We’re not like them” – “you are without excuse, every man of you, who passed judgment, for in that you judge another, you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things” (Romans 2:1). To every single one of us, the Word of God says, “There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands, no one who seeks God. All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one … all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:10-12, 23).
* Is there any hope for any of us? There is no way of salvation that begins with “I” – “no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by observing the law” (Romans 3:20). From the human point of view, our situation is hopeless.
* Is there a way of salvation which comes to us from God? The final words of this Psalm are words of hope: “Oh, that salvation for Israel would come out of Zion! When the Lord restores the fortunes of his people, let Jacob rejoice and Israel be glad!” (Psalm 14:7). These words teach us that salvation comes from God – “When the Lord restores … ” They teach us that His salvation comes to those who come to Him with a deep longing to be saved by Him – “Oh, that salvation … would come … “ The human situation can be changed. Jesus Christ changes everything. He changes people.
Don’t be like the fool who tries to run away from God.
- This can be done by saying, “There is no God.”
- It can also be done by trying to keep God at a distance, “If there is a God, I’m not going to let Him tell me how I should live my life.”
Stop running away from God, and start running to the Lord Jesus Christ. Run to Him before it’s too late. Make sure that you can say, “I know whom I have believed” (2 Timothy 1:12). Jesus Christ is the True and Living Way to God the Father (John 14:6).
When you come to God the Father through His Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ,you will move beyond an empty faith which doesn’t make much real difference to your life. You will move into a living knowledge of Christ, who makes you “a new creation” (2 Corinthians 5:17).Your faith will be more than, “There is a God.” It will be “Christ lives in me. For me, to live is Christ” (Galatians 2:20; Philippians 1:21).