Monday, January 2, 2017

The God They Didn’t Know

Acts 17:23For as I walked around and looked carefully at your objects of worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: to an unknown god. So you are ignorant of the very thing you worship—and this is what I am going to proclaim to you.”

Caught this little devotional from Acts 17:23-32.Check it out. The people of Athens were known to be quite religious, worshipping a host of nature gods. They even had set up an altar “to the unknown god.” Paul pounced on this point of contact to declare unto them the God they didn’t know. He starts by laying the foundation: This God, he claims, is the Creator of heaven and earth, all this is.

Acts 17:24 “The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands.”

He not only “made the world and all things therein”, but also is “Lord of heaven and earth.” To cause to exist and then to rule over all of creation, one must be omnipotent (All-powerful). He is much too great to dwell in “temples made with hands.” How ludicrous to think He might need anything, including the worship of men.

Acts 17:25 And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything. Rather, he himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else.

This God “hath made of one blood all nations of men” and “hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation” (v. 26). To know all men, their race, futures, and details of their lives, God must be omniscient (all-Knowing), eternal, boundless. He has done this so “that they should seek the Lord” (v. 27). He is not hard to find, for He is “not far from every one of us.” He is the sustainer and source of all life.

Acts 17:28-29 ‘For in him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’ “Therefore since we are God’s offspring, we should not think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone—an image made by human design and skill.”

But mankind has not known this God. He has been patient, but hates sin and “commandeth all men every where to repent” (v. 30), to gain forgiveness based on the work of “that man whom he hath ordained” (v. 31) as a final sacrifice, or as righteous judge. We can be sure of this because, when the sacrifice was slain, God “raised him from the dead”.
Acts 17:32 When they heard about the resurrection of the dead, some of them sneered, but others said, “We want to hear you again on this subject.”

Some mocked at the declaration of this mighty God; some refused to act; but others believed. This is still true today. Know God, know peace


Karen said...

Great post. I am thrilled to hear from missionaries in Iraq of muslims turning to Jesus Christ. He is a might God!

Brian Ray Todd said...

Thank you for the comment Karen. One of my former pastors took a Missionary/Pastor role in Slovakia years ago and told of many Muslims secretly meeting with him to pray and hear the gospel of Jesus Christ and converting to Christianity. I also hear testimonies of how the "man in white" appears to many Muslims in dreams. The Lord is at work in the work and we need to recognize that and be a part of His redemption work through the Word of God and the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He truly is Almighty God.