Suppose a young man went out and bought a beautiful diamond engagement ring for his fiancée. The jeweller, wanting to give good service for a $1,000 sale, threw in a very pretty box in which to present the ring to her.
Tell me, how disappointed would the young man be if his fiancée said to him, “What a beautiful box you have given me. To take special care of it I promise to wrap it up and keep it in a safe place so no harm will come to it”.
Rather ridiculous, wouldn’t you say? Yet it’s just as foolish for men and women to be spending all their time on their bodies but neglecting the real self, the soul, which the Bible says will persist long after our bodies have crumbled to dust.
Without a doubt, man is given an ability to worship, but what he worships is his own choice. Nonetheless he has the ability to worship. The Bible, however, points out that man is born with an instinct of God. Romans 1 clearly points out that all one has to do is to admire God's creation and that leaves man no excuse to deny God.
So we read in Psalm 14:1and 53:1 that the fool has said in his heart that there is no God. Why does David use the word ‘fool’? Well why not? Because man is denying something that is natural to him, that God really does exist.
Now it really amazes me the number of times I heave heard world-renowned scientists, biologists, anthropologists and any other name that man wants to call the “science of denying God”, that millions of years ago this happened, that happened, something else happened.
I always smile at this type of blaze assumption because in this super-technological age we are battling at times to forecast the weather a day at a time, let alone trying to stick together loose facts and figures millions of years ago.
Interestingly enough, when man decided to land on the moon in 1969, scientists worked out that because the earth, millions of years ago, just happened, they would have to work out the depth of the dust on the moon’s surface. Taking into account the factors which could affect this, they came up with a figure of around 12 feet or 2.7 metres.
So the astronauts went up, all prepared to land in 12 feet of dust. However, it would appear that these calculations were affected by radiation because the greatest depth of dust found was 3 inches or 1/13th of a metre!
The problem that has always confounded man is that he has never been able to control his own world although he has a natural ability to destroy it. Man has fallen into all kinds of sin to try and escape God, but he cannot escape from himself because of his own conviction that God exists and if he acknowledges that he is accountable to God, and if he does that he has to recognise that he is a sinner.
I can honestly say that about 99% of people believe in God and the other 1% reckon they don’t. However I see many more problems with unbelief in God than belief in God.
For instance, to believe that unaided dead matter produced mind, that mind produced conscience and that the chaos of chance produced this ordered universe as we see it today seems to call, not for faith, but for complete stupidity. It’s no wonder David said the fool says in his heart there is no God.
The president of the New York Scientific Society once gave eight reasons why he believed there is a God. The first was this:-
Take ten identical coins and number them one to ten. Place them in your pocket. Now take one out. There is one chance in ten of the number one coin coming out.
Now replace it. The chance that number two will come out is no longer one in ten but one in a hundred. So with each new coin coming out the chance is multiplied by ten, so that the chance of ten following nine is one in 10,000,000,000 (billion). If that seems so unbelievable try it yourself.
So this is why George Gallup, the famous American statistician, claimed that he could prove that God exists statistically. If you take a human body alone, the chance that all its functions would just happen is a statistically mind-blowing figure — a monstrosity. Surely any thinking person would not base their eternal future on a statistically monstrous figure. Maybe that is why David said the fool in his heart says there is no God.
The Bible talks repeatedly about our eternal future.
Hebrews 9:27 “It is appointed once for man to die and then the judgement.”
Man will die only in body but not in soul.
Luke 13:5 “Unless a man repents he will likewise perish.”
The word ‘perish’ doesn't mean that you will be zapped into nothingness. What it means is that you are completely not the person God would have you to be, and as a natural result of your sin God will judge you.
The fact that we have so many cults today is only a symptom of the frustration within man because he is separated from his Maker by sin. Yet man will go to incredible lengths to deny God.
For instance, suppose we are standing at an airport watching a big jet come in for landing. I say to you, “A lot of people think that plane is the result of someone’s Carefully designed plans but I know better. There was really no intelligence in it at all.”
in some strange way the metal just came out of the ground and fashioned itself into flat sheets. Then all these precisely made flat sheets started to grow together and formed the body, the wings and the tail. Then, after a long while, the engines grew into place and then one day someone came along and discovered the plane all finished and ready to fly.’
Now by this time you're quite sure that I'm only about one cent in the dollar, so you wisely decide to move on. Why?
Because you know where there is a design there must be a designer and having seen other creations of the human mind, just like the plane in question, you are positive that it was planned by human intelligence and built by human skill.
Yet there are educated men, professional men, who tell us that the entire universe came into being by chance and will go to extreme lengths to emphasise their opinions because that is all they are, and without facts we are dealing with man's opinions.
Yet there are many thoughtful men who believe that God is clearly revealed in nature.
James Irwin went up in that 1969 Apollo flight to create history by landing on the moon. Yet when he went up there into outer space he became convinced that only God could create such a beautiful world. There was no other explanation.
The psalmist David had no doubts about who made the earth, the planets and the stars — no doubts whatsoever.
Turn to Psalm 8:3,
David knew God intimately and knew God was the Creator of all things. This is why he constantly praises the Lord for His beautiful handiwork.
Dr Wernher von Braun, director of NASA Research and developer of the rocket which put America's first space satellite into orbit, says this:-
“In our modern world many people seem to feel that our rapid advances in the field of science render such things as religious belief untimely or old-fashioned. They wonder why we should be satisfied in ‘believing’ something when science tells us all that we know so many things.”
Well science most certainly has not got all the answers, although people worship the god of science in the hope that it can explain away the existence of God. However, most scientists today would have to admit that there are many more mysteries of nature today than when the age of so-called scientific enlightenment began.
For every problem science solves there open up another two or three new problems.
Well the realisation would have to hit home that everything as well ordered and perfectly created as our earth would have to have a major designer. Anything so orderly, so perfect, so precisely balanced, so majestic as the creation can only be the product of a divine idea.
The late Professor Edwin Conklin, a noted biologist, very aptly said, “The probability of life originating from accident is comparable to the probability of an unabridged dictionary resulting from an explosion in a print shop”.
You see, God exists, whether or not men may choose to believe.
Psalm 139 (all).
If man acknowledges that there is a God, then he has to acknowledge that he is responsible to God for his life. So if he acknowledges these things, then he would have to recognise heaven and hell. So to go to heaven requires a decision on the basis of sin and repentance.
If he wants to continue in sin, then the natural result is hell;
God does not send people to hell. Hell is the logical result of sin.
Repentance means a child-like change of mind. Man recognises that he is a sinner and no longer wishes to continue in this manner.
So repentance means a complete turnaround from the world towards God.
A minister faithfully proclaimed the Gospel in an open-air meeting in Glasgow, Scotland. At the end of the message an unbeliever stepped forward from the crowd and said, “I don’t believe in heaven or hell. I don’t believe in God or Christ. I haven’t seen them.” Then a young man wearing dark glasses came forward and Said, “You say there is a river near this place — the River Clyde. Well there is no such thing. You say there are people standing here but it cannot be true. I haven’t seen them — I was born blind! Only a blind man could say what I have said.
But your problem my friend is that you are spiritually blind and cannot see. The Bible says of you, “But the natural man receives not the things of the Spirit of God for they are foolishness to him; neither can he know them because they are spiritually discerned.”
Is this your life story? Has the god of this age, Satan, blinded your eyes? Do you think that your life is right? It’s okay? You’re happy with the way things are going? Well let’s read the second half of verse one.
“They are corrupt, their seeds are vile; there is no one who does good.”
Turn with me to Romans 3, verse 10.
The Bible clearly points out that there is nothing that we can offer up to God as righteousness because, as David puts it in Psalm 81:5.:
“Surely I have been a sinner from birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived.”
You see, if there was anything we could do to obtain salvation the cross of Calvary would be meaningless. Isaiah knew there was nothing he could do to obtain salvation when he said in Isaiah 64:6,
“My righteousness is nothing but filthy rags.”
Christ has provided redemption (bought back) for the whole world by shedding His precious blood for all to enter into His kingdom.
So we read in 1 John 1:7 that the blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin so that if we confess our sins He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from ALL unrighteousness.
So there is nothing we can do to win our way to heaven except by receiving the free gift of salvation, the finished work of Calvary for Jesus died once for all.
That is why the Apostle writes in Romans 1:16-17,
“I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believes ..... for therein is the righteousness of God revealed.”.
I can say I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, for no man can honestly find a flaw in the righteousness offered by God to man. That is the righteousness you may possess right now, at this moment, if you will accept it.
But is this all you have to do to accept Christ as your Saviour, to save you for all eternity? Sometimes the simplicity of it all is a bit hard to grasp.
Say, for instance, that you owed someone $500 but have nothing to pay with, so a friend pays the debt for you and gives you the receipt. You don't have to worry any longer. You can look your creditors square in the face because you have the signed receipt.
As Jesus Christ gave His life freely on that cruel cross in your place He said, “It is finished”, meaning that your debt has been paid in full and God gave a receipt. The assurance that He was satisfied with Christ’s finished work is that He (God) raised Christ from the dead on the third day.
“But I can’t see it,” said a certain cabinetmaker, as a friend tried to explain to him. Then an idea came to his friend. He lifted up a plane as though he would plane the top of a beautifully polished table near him. “Stop”, cried the cabinetmaker. “Don't you see that it is finished? You’ll simply ruin it if you use that plane on it.”
“Well that’s just what I’ve been trying to show you,” replied his friend, “about Christ’s finished work of redemption on the cross. It was finished when He gave His life for you and if you try to add to that finished work you only spoil it. Just accept it as it stands — His life for yours and you go free.”
In a flash the cabinetmaker saw it and received Christ — the free gift of salvation.
So if your are like the fool in Psalm 14 and are trying to run your own life, it’s just like driving a car at top speed but have no brakes, which means that your car is out of control.
Well trying to run your own life separate from a loving, just and righteous God will mean that eventually your life will run off the road into the gutter.
Romans 10:9-13 sums it all up.