“The fool has said in his heart,
‘There is no God.’
They are corrupt, and have done abominable iniquity;
There is none who does good.”
Biblically speaking atheism is considered folly because God has gone to great lengths to reveal himself to mankind. Paul, when writing to the Roman church divided God’s revelation of himself into two categories; he spoke of things being manifested “to us and in us.”
The things of God are revealed to man through creation. Paul wrote that the invisible attributes of God are visible through His creation. This revelation has a wealth of empirical data to support its effectiveness since all over the world and throughout time people have believed in God. With all the research done by social archaeologists they have never uncovered a single atheistic society. People even in the most difficult surroundings have come to the realization that there is a God and that He deserves their worship.
The things of God are revealed in man through conscience. There seems to be a pattern that develops within cultures. When one generation attempts to suppress belief in God the next generation cries out with a greater desire. When the “Iron Curtain” collapsed in Eastern Europe it did not take long for missionaries to leave their homes and families to bring the gospel to regions that had previously been closed. What they found was that young people who had been raised to believe there was not a God were the first to respond to the message of Christ and surrender their lives to Him.
In a similar passage the writer of Hebrews declared that while God had used many methods to reveal Himself to mankind the pinnacle of His self revelation was the incarnation of Christ. Inner testimony and creation screams that God exists, but it is in Christ that we learn who God is and what He is like. No contemplation about God will be complete without considering Christ. If we want to know God we should start by reading the Gospel according to John. His purpose in writing was to reveal God to us.
- One aspect of this psalm is the frustration of David over the iniquity of the world. He longs for the time when God will rescue His people from the wickedness of this world and the captivity of sin. Read verse 1-3 what is the end result of the person who says “there is no God”, or who simply says “no” to God?
- According to verse 2 and 3, among the children of men, how many do good? How many seek after God?
- We see a richer sense of this psalm when it is quoted in Romans 3:10-12. Read Romans chapter 3
- Note verses 9 and 23 of Romans 3, comparing them with the verse of this Psalm. What does this say about our need for forgiveness and for a Saviour?
- Note verses 22 and 26. How is it that we receive this forgiveness? Have you done this?