Re: > Re: Defining GOG & EOG

George Murphy (
Fri, 19 Dec 1997 07:50:31 -0500

Glenn Morton wrote:
> At 02:03 PM 12/18/97 -0600, George Andrews wrote:
> >I do not see why Eduardo and you accuse me of being in "direct opposition to
> >Romans 1" when it is here that Paul instructs us of mankind's total depravity
> >with its accompanying tendency toward idolatry. Hence, unbelievers worship the
> >creation and only believers see the God of nature. It appears to me that
> you see
> >the emphasis of Rom. 1 as teaching a natural revelation of God for all to see.
> >Instead, its emphasis plainly reveals man's inexcusable guilt before God. The
> >thrust of Paul's argument in Romans is that mankind has SUPPRESSED the truth of
> >God that HAS BEEN revealed through nature because of their "wickedness."
> Interesting. I have never read that passage that way. I have always viewed
> Romans 1:20 as an explanation of 1:19
> Romans 1:19 (NIV) since what may be known about God is plain to them,
> because God has made it plain to them.
> Romans 1:20 (NIV) For since the creation of the world God's invisible
> qualities--his eternal power and divine nature--have been clearly seen, being
> understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.
> if 20 is an explanation of 19 then the creation is what has been made plain
> to them.

It is "plain" but unbelievers don't see it! That is precisely
what Paul says. Any attempt to get back to some primordial condition of
humans prior to Sin & then to find God in nature ignores the reality
of Sin, & results in the consequences Paul describes: Not atheism but
idolatry, worshipping the Philosopher God or the Clockmaker God or the
Intelligent Designer or something of the sort - a step above birds &
reptiles, but not the real God!
Those who believe in the God revealed to Israel & in Christ can
see that God at work in nature, but that "sight" depends on faith.
Natural theology must be part of Christian theology, not something
independent of it.
I'm not happy with the term "total depravity", for even sinners
are in essence good creatures of God. But aside from that, george A is
on the mark here.

George L. Murphy