LORD, I know that people’s lives are not their own; it is not for them to direct their steps (Jer 10:23). Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Pro 3:5-6
A man’s heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps (Pro 16:9). A person may think their own ways are right, but the LORD weighs the heart (Pro 21:2). The LORD makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him; though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the LORD upholds him with his hand. Psa 37:23-24
The humanist idea of the Roman era was not new. The ole serpent in the beginning told Eve that God did not mean what he really said about the Tree of Good and Evil: “You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” Gen 3:4-5
Humanism denies God’s existence/power and operates under the belief that man has the inherent capability to guide his own steps, to cure his own problems, to solve his dilemmas in life. The serpent crafted the basic concept of humanism when he spoke to Eve, this concept was carried on by the Greeks and then by the Romans in Paul’s day, and today is running rampant in the world and yes, even in our own country.
Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth. Such “wisdom” does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice. But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness. Jas 3:13-18
Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men (1Co 1:25). Who has known the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ. 1Co 2:16
Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other. Gal 5:24-26
Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace. Rom 8:5-6
Paul gave the divine argument to the Romans to help them with living in Rome, the seat of government promoting the heart of humanistic thought. Today, Romans should be on our heart and mind as we contend with humanism in our society, in our community, and yes, possibly even in our own church.
Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand……Rom 5:1-9
Scott and Jane Johnson minister with East Faulkner Church of Christ and BRG Bible. Bible questions can be sent to brgbible @gmail.com.