The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, their deeds are vile; there is no one who does good.
This is the 4th in a series of Easter season messages and today’s focus is on “fools.” You may be wondering what Easter has to do with “fools.” For that matter, what does Psalm 14:1 have to do with Easter? Actually, it has everything to do with the Easter story. (And since it’s April Fool’s Day)
A fool is a person who acts unwisely or imprudently; a silly person. Do you know anybody who fits that definition? How about that obnoxious co-worker who shows up late, leaves early, plays all day on her cellphone, and then complains about being overworked? Or that customer service representative who just wasn’t willing to help? Did I hear someone say do-nothing politicians? Don’t get me started.
Let’s stop for a moment. You may be thinking, I thought we weren’t supposed to call someone a fool. Jesus said, “anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell.” (Mt. 5:22)
In context, (Mt. 5:21-26) Jesus is referencing severe anger directed at another, hostility that must be reconciled. He instructs us to work out our differences quickly. Unresolved aggressive behavior toward another is symptomatic of a spiritual deficiency. In verse 25, Jesus tells us to “settle matters quickly with your adversary.”
“Fools” are first identified in our focus text (Psalm 14:1) as those who say “There is no God.” Then in the verses that follow David amplifies the meaning by describing the behavior of fools. Just in case you think he must be talking about somebody other than you or me, David writes, “there is no one who does good.” In verse 3 he repeats the phrase and adds the words “not one.” All of us at some time in our lives were viewed by God as fools.
David describes what God sees when he looks at man in verse 2: “The LORD looks down from heaven on the sons of men to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God.” Sadly, what God sees is not a pretty picture. “All have turned aside, they have together become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one.” (v3)
We are born with a sin nature which means based on the previous description, we come into the world as fools which is precisely where the Easter story comes into play. God looked at the foolish state of man and provided a remedy. Out of His love, He sent Jesus to die for our sinful foolish ways. Maybe Mr. T (The A-Team) had a little more depth of meaning than I ever gave him credit for when he shouted, “Pity the fool!” The LORD looked down from heaven with compassion and saw we were incapable of fellowship with Him.
You may think it is overly bold to say the person who is without God is a fool. But those aren’t my words. They are God’s words. The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” God does not want anyone to remain as a fool. (2 Pet 3:9) But to reject His gift of eternal life through Jesus Christ is to remain a fool. The Apostle Paul wrote, “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” (1 Corinthians 1:18) That is to say that, “You are a fool to reject Christ.”
To be clear, Christians can still act like fools. We act foolishly when we disobey God or fail to follow His direction. But the difference between us and the person who denies God is that God no longer sees us as fools. When God looks at the Christian, He sees the righteousness of Christ.
This message will be received by some as “foolishness” and those of us who express such thoughts will be perceived as “fools for Christ.” (1 Co 4:10) But better a fool in the eyes of man than in the eyes of Almighty God.
What then is the most foolish thing man can do? The most foolish thing that anyone can do is to reject the Easter message. Jesus died for your sins and rose from the dead that you might have eternal life. Repent of your foolish ways (sin) and put your faith, trust, and hope in Jesus.
For more on this topic, check out this article: More Than a Great Teacher and Prophet, Jesus is God
Reprinted from The Forever Notebook, Book 2 (April – June) Get your copy here: Paperback and eBook/Kindle formats.