Someone in my life once made an intentional, foolish, immoral choice. When asked how a professing believer could do such a thing, the person responded that they didn’t believe in God anymore.
This is the way of foolishness and moral corruption. We want what we want, regardless of the consequences to others. We cover up our selfish decisions by painting them with glittering, sparkling excuses. We justify an affront to a holy God and his people by pretending he doesn’t exist.
But that doesn’t change the fact that he does.
He looks down from heaven to see if there is anyone left who will seek him, but all have turned away. He finds no one who does good, not even one. Because no one is good but God alone.
Then here comes grace. Romans 5:6-8 says that at just the right time, when we were powerless to seek him, God loved us and saved us from the judgment we deserve for our sins by putting that judgment on Jesus instead. That doesn’t automatically make us “good;” rather, it gives us a way out from under the power that sin has over us. It gives us the opportunity to admit we can’t be good on our own and exchange our sin for the goodness of Christ, receiving his grace and power to transform our lives. This is the salvation from Zion promised to Israel and the world.
Have you said in your heart, “there is no God”? Maybe you’ve said it to justify doing things your own way. Or, maybe life has disappointed you with circumstances so overwhelming that you reject a good and loving God who allows such things to happen. Maybe it’s easier to pretend that he doesn’t exist than to ponder suffering within the framework of the sovereignty of God and the spiritual forces of evil that seek to destroy us.
Even if you’ve never said or thought “there is no God,” we sometimes act like he doesn’t exist. We pretend to be something we aren’t by spray-painting our lives with fake gold to cover up the hard and rocky places in our lives. We fail to grasp the power God offers us for true transformation by…
- holding onto the things that would enslave us instead of ridding ourselves of them (See Ephesians 4:31 and Colossians 3:5-10).
- walking in our own power instead of the power of the Holy Spirit (See Galatians 3:3, Colossians 1:29, & Ephesians 1:19-20).
- clinging to our old grave clothes instead of clothing ourselves with the character of Christ (see Romans 6:6-7, John 11:44, Ephesians 4:20-24, & Colossians 3:12-14).
We are powerless to affect change in our lives. Control is an illusion that seeks to deceive us every moment of every day. But when we open our hearts to receive grace to help us in our time of need (Hebrews 4:16), the LORD restores his people and gives us cause to rejoice.