7 For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. – Romans 8:7
Conscience, I will put thee in the witness box, and cross-examine thee this morning! Conscience, truly answer! be not drugged with the laudanum of self-security! speak the truth! didst thou never hear the heart say, “I wish there were no God?” Have not all men, at times, wished that our religion were not true? Though they could not entirely rid their souls of the idea of the Godhead, did they not wish that there might not be God? Have they not had the desire that it might turn out that all these divine realities were a delusion, a farce, and an imposture? “Yea,” saith every man, “that has crossed my mind sometimes. I have wished I might indulge in folly; I have wished there were no laws to restrain me; I have wished, as the fool, that there were no God.” That passage in the Psalms, “The fool hath said in his heart, there is no God,” is wrongly translated. It should be, “The fool hath said in his heart, no God.” The fool does not say in his heart there is no God, for he knows there is a God; but he says, “No God,—I don’t want any, I wish there were none.” And who amongst us has not been so foolish as to desire that there were no God? Now conscience, answer another question! Thou hast confessed that thou hast at times wished there were no God; now, suppose a man wished another dead, would not that show that he hated him? Yes, it would. And so, my friends, the wish that there were no God, proves that we dislike God. When I wish such a man dead and rotting in his grave; when I desire that he were non est, I must hate that man; otherwise I should not wish him to be extinct. So that wish—and I do not think there has been a man in this world who has not had it—proves that “the carnal mind is enmity against God.”
The New Park Street Pulpit Sermons, Vol. I (London: Passmore & Alabaster, 1855), 149. Vol. 1, Sermon No. 20; Titled: The Carnal Mind Enmity Against God; Delivered on Sabbath Morning, April 22nd, 1855.