Friday, February 22, 2008

Knowing God (Pt. 2)

Knowing God (Pt. 2)

In the last message I stated “…they go on rejecting God by exchanging the truth of God for a lie, the lie of their mind.” The mind is not bad, we are called to love the Lord with all our heart, soul and mind (Mark 12:30), but when the mind is in control of both heart and soul, then there is a problem. This is something that I struggle with, I love to learn, but when my heart and my head disconnect then there is only judgment in what I say, and I do not do it for the glory of God, but to merely when an argument. This is sin. This is pride. So do not commit intellectual suicide by saying the mind is bad, it is necessary that you may spread the gospel to thinkers as well as to the spiritually ignorant. But do not forget your heart, or only sin will be found (pride).
Now to continue on, “The Mountains and the hills do not willingly worship (Piper).” They were made to worship! They know nothing else! They do not do it willingly because that is their soul purpose! But we close our ears, and worship the creation rather than the Creator (Romans 1:25). The wrath of God is revealed against mankind because of their acceptance of this lie, because of their suppression of the truth that all of creation screams out. The wrath of God is the first doctrinal thing we must learn. “So we will recognize our deep spiritual need and be prepared to receive the knowledge of God in the Lord Jesus Christ, the Savior…(Boice).” We must come to God humbly with a contrite spirit (Isaiah 66:2) else we come boasting of our knowledge of spiritual matters, for in this He would reject us.
God’s wrath against mankind is perfectly just. For example, if I were to commit a crime against another man, then I would be judged according to that crime, and against the man I wronged. But since the crime is against a temporal man then my sentence will not be for eternity. However God is eternal, and since our sins are committed against the Eternal Being of God then it is perfectly just for us to be punished forever. Here are the words of Jonathan Edwards on this matter from his sermons "The Justice of God in the Damnation of Sinners:"

“Every crime or fault deserves a greater or less punishment, in proportion as the crime itself is greater or less. If any fault deserves punishment, then so much the greater the fault, so much the greater is the punishment deserved. The faulty nature of any thing is the formal ground and reason of its desert of punishment; and therefore the more any thing hath of this nature, the more punishment it deserves. And therefore the terribleness of the degree of punishment, let it be never be so terrible, is no argument against the justice of it, if the proportion does but hold between the heinousness of the crime and the dreadfulness of the punishment; so that if there be any such thing as a fault infinitely heinous, it will follow that it is just to inflict a punishment for it that is infinitely dreadful.
… Our obligation to love, honor, and obey any being, is in proportion to his loveliness, honorableness, and authority; for that is the very meaning of the words. When we say any one is very lovely, it is the same as to say, that he is one very much to be loved. Or if we say such a one is more honorable than another, the meaning of the words is, that he is one that we are more obliged to honor. If we say any one has great authority over us, it is the same as to say, that he has great right to our subjection and obedience.

But God is a being infinitely lovely, because he hath infinite excellency and beauty. To have infinite excellency and beauty, is the same thing as to have infinite loveliness. He is a being of infinite greatness, majesty, and glory; and therefore he is infinitely honorable. He is infinitely exalted above the greatest potentates of the earth, and highest angels in heaven; and therefore he is infinitely more honorable than they. His authority over us is infinite; and the ground of his right to our obedience is infinitely strong; for he is infinitely worthy to be obeyed himself, and we have an absolute, universal, and infinite dependence upon him.

So that sin against God, being a violation of infinite obligations, must be a crime infinitely heinous, and so deserving of infinite punishment.- Nothing is more agreeable to the common sense of mankind, than that sins committed against any one, must be proportionably heinous to the dignity of the being offended and abused; as it is also agreeable to the word of God, I Samuel 2:25. "If one man sin against another, the judge shall judge him;" (i.e. shall judge him, and inflict a finite punishment, such as finite judges can inflict;) "but if a man sin against the Lord, who shall entreat for him?"

The infinitely punishable act is that of sin, disobedience, pride, etc. And because it is a crime against God’s infinite glory than the lowest term of sentencing is eternity. Due to it being an infinitely heinous act then the least amount of punishment is that of Hell (dreadful). So you see that God is perfectly just in His sentencing and in the punishment itself. We must learn this to be able to come to Him humbly to receive the gift of eternity with Him, because the price has been paid, and we are free in Christ, if we are Christian.

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