Friday, April 09, 2010

The Fundamentals - Human Pride

This week's installment from "The Fundamentals"

Excerpted from the essay, "Life in the Word," by Philip Mauro

The Bible has nothing to say in praise of man or of his natural endowments. On the contrary, it derides his wisdom as "foolishness with God." It declares that God has made foolish the wisdom of this age (1 Corinthians 1:20); that the natural man is incapable of receiving the things of the Spirit of God (2:14); and that if any man thinks that he knows anything, he knows nothing yet as he ought to know (8:2).

Nor does the Bible predict the ultimate triumph of "civilization." It does not say that the progress of humanity shall bring it eventually to a vastly better state of things. It does not say that human nature shall improve under the influences of education and self-culture, even with that of Christianity added. On the contrary, it declares that evil men shall "wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived" (2 Timothy 3:13).

Even of "this present evil age" (Gal 1:4), during which the professing church is the most conspicuous object on earth, and during which the world has the enormous benefit resulting from the light of revelation and an open Bible, it is not predicted that man and his world would undergo any improvement, or that the developments of the age would be in direction of better conditions on earth. On the contrary, the Bible declares that "in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power" (2 Timothy 3:1-5).

Such is the character of man, and such is to be the result, as Scripture foretells it, of all his schemes of betterment, education, development, self-culture, civilization and character-building. And because of this, the Bible is heartily detested. Men have sought nothing more earnestly than they have sought to destroy this appallingly accurate portrait of themselves and their doings. How astonishing it is that any intelligent person should suppose that man drew this picture of himself, and predicted this as the outcome of all his own efforts! No wonder the Bible is hated, and for the simple and sufficient reason that it declares the truth about man and his world.

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