For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. — Romans 1: 19-20
Several words in this passage are like burrs under a horse’s saddle to atheists, agnostics and skeptics. To be described as ungodly and unrighteous jabs them at the heart of their pride — a pride that upholds their personal judgment as objective, logical, scientific and even noble. They see “truth” not as something greater than they are, to which they must be held accountable, but something that is subject to their own judgment, their own approval, their own powers of observation and measurement. Rather than considering truth to be authoritative, they consider themselves to have the authority that allows truth to be what it is.
The Biblical world view recognizes that God exists because it is clear that he has revealed himself to us.The Bible is God’s revelation of himself to man. But also, all of God’s creation reveals himself to man and affords us the opportunity to perceive his eternal power and divine nature. The passage above cites the creation of the world. But Psalm 19:1 includes the whole universe in which we live: “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.”
God reveals himself to us, and what can be known about God is plain to everyone, because he shows it to us. In John 18:37 Jesus tells Pontius Pilate, “…For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world—to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice.” Jesus also said in John 14:6, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” So those of us who are of the truth bear witness to the truth. It is easy for us to see God’s invisible attributes in the things that he has made. So, the more we learn about his creation, the more our faith is confirmed.
The only reason a person would not be able to see the truth of God revealed throughout creation is that they are covering their own eyes. They don’t see God because they won’t see God. And when you cover your eyes, it’s just as if you are saying, “I don’t care what’s out there. I only care for what goes on in my own mind.”
That is why they are without excuse. God has plainly shown us what can be known about him. Those who can’t see it are refusing to see it, as a matter of their own will. That is why words like ungodly and unrighteous are used to describe them. And that is why God is also revealing his wrath against them. They are without excuse because they willfully block God from their view, substituting themselves for God as the final arbiter of reality.
Logic and imagination are wonderful gifts, and often lead to great creativity and achievement. But when your logic and imagination are held captive by self-centered pride, the reality you create in your mind becomes a maze and a prison. Such a reality is limited, small and marked by sin and selfishness. God isn’t there in your world because you won’t allow him any space.
But the truth is greater than your tiny reality. God is bigger than you — something you lack the courage to admit. Faith takes courage because you will only know God when you are willing to humble yourself before him. And to do that, you must first come to the end of yourself.
Jesus said, “If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow Me.” That is the total opposite to what the world teaches. But read the book of Ecclesiastes. It says that everything about human life is meaningless — “vanity and chasing after wind”. But the book ends by saying “fear God and keep his commandments” because he is going to judge everything we do.
You can only hide your eyes for so long. Eventually God’s judgment will come, and at that time, if you are still trying to hide your eyes it will be too late for you. You will have made your bed and now you will have to lie in it.
There can be no lasting meaning to life, nothing of permanent value, without God. Thus, it is the fool who says there is no God (Psalm 14:1).
“Make your ear attentive to wisdom,
Incline your heart to understanding;
For if you cry for discernment,
Lift your voice for understanding;
If you seek her as silver
And search for her as for hidden treasures;
Then you will discern the fear of the LORD
And discover the knowledge of God.” — Proverbs 2:2-5
“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom,
and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.” — Proverbs 9:10
[UPDATE] No snarky, irate, argumentative, challenges to debate or endless repetitions of demands for evidence that already is apparent, but denied by so-called “skeptics” are welcome here. I will not publish such comments. This site is not a place for free-for-alls.