January 22 - God’s Absence and Presence
God is our Maker, we are made in His image and likeness, He is the Source of our lives and we need Him to live a full life. He must be constantly present in our lives or His absence would make us less human. The psalmist calls those who live apart from God “fools”. A fool is one who lives his life on his own, in the absence of God. It is so because he has removed God from his life and keeps on saying in his heart that there is no God.
The greatest depravation one could ever experience is the absence of God. This lack causes us to live in total depravity, turning us into irrational beings. The psalmist sees them as morally corrupt. In an absence of God, no one would make the rules and no one could hold anyone accountable. The earthly laws and regulations are only temporal and they do not have the power to make anyone behave. If there were no God, there would not be any morals. Morality is not just the right way of relating or behaving, it is the requirements of God for His created beings. Human made laws can only change the outward behavior, but it does little to change the human heart. A law-abiding person may not be a morally upright person.
In the absence of God, man would become ignorant. They do not know the requirements of God or what is the right way to live. This is the greatest ignorance for any person even though that person is well educated. Worldly knowledge cannot make one wise, it is only the fear of God that enables us to have knowledge and wisdom. Without the real knowledge of God, man would fall into sins and corruption without even knowing it. A fool is one who does not have the correct knowledge to live his life. Some might have the knowledge of the bible, theology and other knowledge about God but without the fear of God, they are still fools.
The chief characteristic of one who is without God is the sense of aloneness. He is by himself and there is no God to walk with him through his life. Since he is convinced that there is no God, so he does not pray. He is to face life by himself and there is no salvation, help or refuge he could go to. Others fail him again and again and he is left to fend for himself. Knowing of his limited resources and inability, he is in a constant state of anxiety and fear. This is not a very good situation to be in.
Joseph walks with God and he experienced the presence. He could make sense of all that had happened to him. God sent him ahead to save not only Egypt but also his own family. There is a purpose in his life and he lived life to the fullest. Would you like to live in God’s presence rather than in His absence?
Ps 14:1-7 Gen 44:1-45:28 Matt 14:13-36 Prov 4:11-13