Musings 83

Rom 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them…22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures. 24 Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them. 25 For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. 26 For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts & receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error. 28 and just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are gossips, 30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful; 32 and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.

One of the most obvious ways (from the text) that God hardens hearts and turns men over to sin is when He hardens their hearts toward Himself and turns them over to various forms of humanism. The core aspect of sin is always in relation to God.
1. Men suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because that which is known about God is evident within them.
2. Men exchange the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man
3. Men exchange the truth of God for a lie, and worship and serve the creature rather than the Creator
4. Men do not see fit to acknowledge God any longer
5. Men are haters of God
6. Men approve the sinful practices of others even though God hates them

What is so interesting to note, is that as men continue in their downward slide as they suppress the truth of God, men become more man-centered the greater distance they stray from the truth of God. But perhaps even more interesting (so to speak), is to note that man begins to think of God as a humanist and as man-centered. In other words, not only does man suppress the truth of God and become man-centered, but in his thinking he begins to think of God as man-centered as well. This is to say that as man suppresses the truth of God and of man as being in the image of God, man begins to make a god in his own image. It can also be said that as men suppress the truth of God they take His rightful place at the center of all things and become their own arbiter and standard.

The slide of men into sin takes a horrible toll on man and his submission to God. This slide into sin also takes a terrible toll on worship as men think that they are worshipping God but are really worshipping an image of themselves that they now call “God.” This wicked slide away from God lands man in a very, very distorted worldview and theology. Man thinks of God as being almost dependent on man and of God as also being very focused and centered upon man as if God loved man more than Himself. This is truly a frightening way of looking at things, yet this is the truth of the matter. Not all who use the word “God” mean even close to the same thing.

What we now see is a nation who has such a distorted view of God that it appears that the vast majority of churches that have the name of Christian are far from the true God. The so-called services are not about the wonders and glories of God, but instead about the greatness of man and the duties of man that he should do for God. What is missing is the true glory of God in that He saves by grace alone. The true God loves Himself and His glory and He must save men by grace alone and bring them to share in His love for Himself. God does not exist in heaven weeping and hoping that men will love Him, but instead it is His free gift of grace that He gives some men to love Him. God is sovereign over all men rather than men being sovereign over God in their choosing Him to be saved and in their praying to Him to get Him to do things for them. Even orthodox groups have suppressed the truth of God and so they think of God as being man-centered. Those who love the true God must be broken and pray. Those who love the true God should seek Him to open the eyes of blinded men so that His glory would shine in and through men as He deserves.

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