For although they knew God, they did not honour him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened.
Romans 1:21 (ESVUK)
When trying to share the Gospel with non-believers we need to consider what the Bible tells us about the effects of sin. In Romans, the apostle Paul writes that it makes our thinking dark, foolish, and futile. The claim that sin corrupts our minds runs against modern trends. We live in the so-called ‘age of reason’, where people are told they should think for themselves and come to their own conclusions. Our generation is full of searchers, those who trawl through the creeds of various religions for inspiration to come to their own truth about what god is and what he wants.
In life there are two masters you can serve: God, or yourself. There is no third, neutral position to arbitrate from. Thus, impartiality is always an illusion. John Frame writes that ‘Idolatry is not an innocent search for the divine or the result of honest ignorance. It is, rather, wilfully and culpably turning away from the clear revelation of the true God.’ Coming to Christ isn’t about doing it on your own terms. It’s not about receiving a sign you thought you were owed or questioning God until He’s answered everything to your satisfaction. It’s about submitting to God and allowing him to be the centre of Truth in your life.
Therefore, we must hold fast to the primacy of the Word in determining what is true. It is not for the hearts of man to test scripture; it is for scripture to test the hearts of man. Our job in apologetics is twofold. First, we must convict others that beliefs not grounded in the Word are inconsistent and bear no fruit. Second, we must show that the Word itself is consistent and can indeed explain the world we live in.
However, before you do this, you need to make sure that you submit to God. Do you fit your beliefs about what is right and wrong into what the Bible says, or do you fit the Bible into your beliefs about what is right and wrong? Do you rely on your own heart to interpret scripture, or do you ask God to fill you with His? Pray that you might approach with humility and be led by His wisdom rather than your own foolishness.
--Boaz Moser serves on Cornerstone Leadership as part of the Underclassmen Ministry Team