Summary: Dear saints of God do not believe the lies that this increasingly secular culture would have you accept! In order to be a person of faith you need not abandon the mind which God gave you. And in order to be a person of reason you need not abandon faith i
The End of Faith? Psalm 14
One day the zoo-keeper noticed that the orangutan was reading two books - the Bible and Darwin’s Origin of Species.
Surprised, he asked the ape, “Why are you reading both those books?” “Well,” said the orangutan, “I just wanted to know if I was my brother’s keeper or my keeper’s brother.”
We live in an age of increasing secularism and skepticism. Science is worshiped as though it was a god, and the very notion of faith is disregarded as fiction. Sociologists call our time postmodern, because in our day truth tends to be regarded as simply whatever you make it.
In our day, the concept of anything as absolute is absolutely unacceptable.
For many in our day it is as though they are standing at the intersection of faith and reason, and must decide which way to go. The culture has wrongly insisted that faith and reason are incompatible.
One of the classes that I took in my undergraduate degree in Religion at Liberty University was a biology class which dealt with the issues of evolution and creation from a scientific and a biblical view point.
The professor held a Ph.D. in biochemistry, he is a brilliant man, and he is also a Christian. He used to say that he was the most worshipful of God when he was looking into a microscope.
He would say that was when he was filled the most awe and wonder of the power and nature of God. God is a God of order and design. He has wonderfully arranged the stars in the heavens as well as the cells of a human eye.
Following after Christ has nothing to do with abandoning reason and intellect; it is in following after Christ that our hearts and minds are opened to using the minds which God gave us to comprehend the depths of all that God has created.
This morning, the premise of this sermon is simply this; in order to accept reason as valid, one need not reject faith in Jesus Christ.
It is not necessary to reject religion to embrace the mind. Faith and reason are not at odds with one another, faith gives reason substance and reason points us toward the need for faith.
C. S. Lewis once wrote, “In science we have been reading only the notes to a poem; in Christianity we find the poem itself.”
Psalms 14:1-7 says, “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God.’ They are corrupt, They have done abominable works, There is none who does good. The LORD looks down from heaven upon the children of men, To see if there are any who understand, who seek God. They have all turned aside, They have together become corrupt; There is none who does good, No, not one. Have all the workers of iniquity no knowledge, Who eat up my people as they eat bread, And do not call on the LORD? There they are in great fear, For God is with the generation of the righteous. You shame the counsel of the poor, But the LORD is his refuge. Oh, that the salvation of Israel would come out of Zion! When the LORD brings back the captivity of His people, Let Jacob rejoice and Israel be glad.” (NKJV)
In this passage of Scripture the Psalmist is making three general statements. First, that only a fool denies the existence of God.
Second, that those who deny God tend to have a natural bent toward immorality. The Psalmist makes this statement through the use of hyperbole. Hyperbole is a literary device which simply means overstatement.
Clearly not every atheist or agnostic is morally bankrupt as the Psalmist declares. Through his overstatement, though, his message is plainly understood – those who turn away from God abandon their moral compass, they are like a ship in the storm with no ruder, no ethical or spiritual direction.
To the person who denies God, the Psalmist says, there is no standard in the universe, and if there is not a standard for morality or ethics, then anything goes.
And we should not be surprised that where we find the denial of God in society or in personal lives, we tend to find selfishness, sin, and corruption.
When you cast aside the moral law giver, is it any surprise that the moral law is cast aside as well?
Just look at what is happening in our own culture. The highest principals of the Scripture are mercy and justice, yet we don’t have to look very far even in our own lives to find cruelty and injustice.
Finally, the Psalmist declares that in the end God’s mercy and salvation will reign supreme. The Psalmist reminds us of the eternal hope that we have as children of God and followers of Christ.