Agonizomai: Romans Chapter 3 - Universal Corruption<br>Man's Corrupt Words - Part 4

Monday, February 16, 2009

Romans Chapter 3 - Universal Corruption
Man's Corrupt Words - Part 4
Mouth - full of curses and bitterness




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Romans 3:14 “Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness.”


Curses and bitterness are all directed against God. Sometimes openly so, and at other times more subtly. Mankind has turned into what the psychiatric profession calls “help rejecting complainers”. People who want to complain and so reject all offers to help them. They refuse to be corrected or comforted. Bitterness and complaint have become their purpose – they have grown comfortable with it – it is their “friend”.

But when men complain they exhibit a chafing against the will of God for them. It is God’s will that whatever is in their lives be there in the way it is at the time it is there. Are they sick? They complain, but do not understand that the sickness is there for a reason that the God of all creation has determined. Are they frustrated, passed over for a promotion, broke, family problems, friends unreliable, house falling apart, car on the fritz, kids acting up or the weather either too hot or too cold? God has purposed this for them but, instead of thanking Him and submitting – searching out or simply submitting to His reasons – they follow their bitter, resentful and depraved hearts into complaint, thus compounding their sin and misery.

They will not see that all things are there to bring them to repentance, whether God’s kindness when things “go well”, or God’s judgment warnings when things are a disaster. All things are drawing men towards God so that they will call out to Him either in thanks and praise, or in sorrow, repentance and supplication. But the fallen man will not come. All lost men are like the Jewish leaders that Jesus rebuked…
…you refuse to come to me that you may have life. {John 5:40}
This despite the various evidences we have seen that God has put into the lives of all men.

When they complain, all men either blame or reproach God. And everyone complains. To our great shame, even Christians complain – in unguarded moments we complain about the weather, the government, our jobs or our families – and if we don’t do it openly then we think it. We catch ourselves forming the thought and giving rein to it in our minds, instead of …“taking every thought captive to obey Christ.” {2Corinthians 10:5}

Try to imagine what God hears in the hearts of every fallen person on earth. A constant bitter droning complaint wafting up to Him, blaming Him, slandering Him from every quarter without ceasing, day or night. And this in the place where prayers of thanksgiving, praise and gratitude ought to be ascending like a sweet and pleasing odor. These good things are God’s due, His right and His desert, but mankind instead sends only ungrateful and bitter evil His way.

The wonder is not that God is wrathful with men, but that He delays to wipe every one of them from the face of the earth, and to consign them to the torments of hell without further ado; that he forbears their rebellious ingratitude and is patient and merciful and kind in the face of slanderous lies about Him; that He still calls upon all men everywhere to repent, and holds out the hope of salvation to them. It is a fathomless wonder that He saves any one at all, rather than simply pulling the plug on us all.

When a lady complained to C.H Spurgeon that she could not understand how God could hate Esau and love Jacob, Spurgeon replied that it was not God’s hating Esau that gave him a problem – it was trying to understand how God could love Jacob.

As we Christians consider these thoughts, let us not take the word "they" too much to heart. “They” are “we” apart from the free grace of God in Jesus Christ. In fact, though we have greater light than they, we ought to be considering how grace upon grace is needed in our case, as we falter and stumble constantly in the very same things that we are supposed to have turned from.


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