8 February 2012

What is wrong with the world?

“The fact is that the day is very dark. The heavens are lowering with heavy thunder clouds. Men little dream of what storms may soon shake the city and the whole fabric of the land, even to a general breaking up of society...The days are evil.”

Those words were written by Charles Spurgeon in the 19th century – and they could easily describe London and the UK today. Despite 150 years of unparalleled advances, the times are still evil. What’s wrong?

Here’s 2 answers from the Bible that might surprise you!

First, the world we have is our heart’s desire.

People often say that the trouble in the world is evidence that God does not exist, or if he does, he doesn’t care. The Bible would turn that thought on its head. God cares for right and wrong so much that he’s punishing all our wrongdoing right now! Romans 1 verse 18 tells us that “The anger of God is being revealed against all the godlessness and wickedness of humans”...Right now, God is actively responding to all our wrongdoing, like this:

In our minds and hearts we tell God to shove off and let us live how we want. God’s response to that deeply offensive response to him is to give us over to the sinful desires of our hearts (v24), to shameful lusts (v26) and to a depraved mind (v28). He’s given us over to our heart’s desire and it’s out of the godless human heart that all the bad things come. The trouble in the world is not so much the cause of God’s anger but the evidence of God’s anger against us. He has condemned us to live as our hearts desire.

Secondly, we reject the true God we know.

People make out it is not possible to know for certain that God exists. So they get on with life without reference to him or fear of him. But their uncertainty is a lie, says God. Romans 1 verse 18: “The anger of God is being revealed against all the godless and wickedness of humans who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them...being understood from what has been made, so that humans are without excuse.”

If I found something as simple as a freshly baked cake on the table for me, I’d ask who made it, and I’d want to thank them for it. But we wake up every morning to the wonderful world God made, and in our hearts we willfully deny what is screamingly obvious – God made it. And therefore we deliberately don’t do what we should – worship him and thank him for it all.

All the time we cut ourselves off from the one person who can right all our wrongs; and at the same time we provoke him to act against us, not for us. What fools we are!

What is wrong with the world? We are what is wrong with the world, and our attitude to the plain truth. We reject the true God we know.

God said at the birth of Christ, “You are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” Jesus is our only hope and the only way out of our mess.

So why not join us at St George’s, as we meet each week, to find out more about our Saviour? God has promised, “Return to me and I will return to you.”

Simon Smallwood
Vicar – St George’s