Yesterday, we began our study of Psalm 14 by looking at the opening phrase, “The fool says in his heart, ‘there is no God.’” Now that the fool has denied God, the next few verses describe how his foolish belief has led to foolish action.
Please read Psalm 14, focusing on verses 1-4.
The foolish heart leads to evil acts. In the opening three verses of this Psalm, the fool is described as ‘corrupt’ twice, and David twice repeats the refrain “there is none who does good.”
The fool is corrupt. Everyone is corrupt. Therefore, everyone is a fool!
This conclusion is quite logical: when people deny the Lord as their God, they are rejecting the source of all truth, love, goodness, and righteousness. Naturally, this will lead them down a dark path.
But it isn't the dark path that is activing on the fool. It isn't a passive verb. David doesn’t say that the fool has become corrupt, but that fools are corrupt. This is an active verb. The fool chooses to act in ways contrary to God. He chooses to commit abominable deeds. After all, the things that are abominable to God seem to taste sweet to the fool.
Do not fall into the trap of thinking that David is describing a few atheists in these verses, but most people are generally good. He declares that God—the all-seeing, all-knowing Sovereign Lord over the Universe—has surveyed His creation and determined that no one seeks after Him, ‘not even one;’ all have turned away from Him and become corrupt. This depraved state of the fool is the natural state of all people. Apart from Jesus Christ, we do those things that we should not do, and we fail to do the things that we should do.
In verse 3, David says it both positively and negatively: ‘all have turned aside,’ and ‘there is none who does good.’ Fools are utterly corrupt.
What makes this worse for God’s people is the said reality of verse 4: these foolish evildoers “eat up God’s people as they eat bread.” They are not content to simply deny God and live however they please. These foolish evildoers insist on attacking the people of God.
Anyone who believes the truth of Jesus Christ is the enemy of the fool. Anyone who reminds them of their foolish disbelief in the God of the Universe is worthy of being attacked.
Jesus told us that the world would hate us because the world has hated him. This Psalm tells us why: the world is full of fools who reject God; they have become complacent in their rejection of God; and they despise any true believer, whose mere existence reminds them of that which they have worked so hard to reject. The fool’s evil belief has led to evil actions, which attack any righteousness in their path. That is the sad state of the present world in which we live.
Fortunately, verses 5-7 of this Psalm look forward to the reality that will one day come. We will look at these verses tomorrow.
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