In a recent sermon, the pastor of my church commented on some highway billboards in Colorado that atheist groups were using to try to dissuade people from going to church and not too long ago, there were similar billboards right here in the Dallas/Fort Worth area where I live. They featured a happy looking family with a caption that read, “We’re just fine without God.” The message they wanted to convey was clear: “We say there is no God. See how happy we are!”
It might come as a surprise to many atheists, but the Bible actually teaches us that people do in fact have a tendency to believe they have no need for God when life is good and everything is going their way. They truly believe they’re just fine without God. In the Old Testament beginning in book of Judges and continuing through the books of Kings 1 and 2, the people of Israel went through that cycle of sin, repentance, judgement, and restoration time and again. When life was good, they were just like atheists today: They thought they were just fine without God, and they turned away from Him.
The prophets Amos and Hosea preached during a time of almost unparalleled prosperity in both the northern kingdom of Israel and the southern kingdom of Judah, yet it was during that time when the people of both kingdoms turned from God. They were just fine without God, so they thought. But both kingdoms eventually fell, first Israel in the north, and later on, Judah.
Jesus told the story of the rich fool whose fields yielded such a bumper crop that he went out and had new storehouses built to house the abundance of grain. He then planned to kick back and live a life of ease. He trusted in his riches. He had no need for God. He was just fine without God right up to the moment God told him he was about to die.
It’s interesting how the atheist organizations that sponsored the billboards only showed pictures of cheerful and happy people. What you never see is a picture of a drug addict laying in an alley saying “I’m just fine without God.” You don’t see a picture of a frightened and distraught young teenage girl who found out she’s pregnant by a boyfriend who broke off the relationship the instant she told him about the baby with a caption that exclaims “I’m just fine without God.” You’ll never see a depiction of a family mourning the loss of a little child with a tagline underneath that says, “We’re just fine without God.” You won’t see an image of a wounded soldier in a foxhole who’s under fire on some battlefield telling the whole world, “I’m just fine without God.” You’d never see anything like on any billboard because it would be absurd. That’s how it is with advertising. You usually only see the side the advertisers want you to see.
In their war against God and followers of Christ, the atheist community wants the world to believe that there is no almighty God who bestows blessings, no almighty God who exalts, no almighty God who watches over us and guides us. They’d have us believe that the universe and everything in it came into existence by some random cosmic event without the involvement of a creator. They’d have us believe that man is the measure of all things and people create their own fate apart from an omniscient and omnipresent God. As followers of Jesus Christ, we must stand by truth. And the truth is, no one is “just fine without God.” Paul took it a a step further in the third chapter of Romans where he wrote:
None is righteous, no, not one;
no one understands;
no one seeks for God.
All have turned aside; together they have become worthless;
no one does good,
not even one.
In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said our Father in Heaven makes the sun rise on the evil and the good, and he causes rain to fall on the just and the unjust. So it’s easy to see how atheists can fool themselves into believing they’re just fine without God. Even as believers, we have to guard against becoming complacent, because some of us have a tendency to say, “God, I’ve got this.” when we think everything is going our way. We must never forget that the reason Jesus Christ came into the world as God in the flesh is because we are not good. No one is fine without God. Everyone is lost without God. Everyone is condemned to eternity in hell without God. Everyone is hopeless without God. That is a truth we cannot shy away from and one we must hammer home at every given opportunity.
2000 years ago Jesus was born into a world that was anything but fine. It’s anything but fine today. Lord Jesus, we need You because we are not “just fine without God”. We’re not even good and can never be good enough. But the good news is, we don’t have to rely on our goodness. We only need to rely on You!
Merry Christmas, and glory and honor to Jesus Christ!