He is not afraid of competitive gods. They try to climb to His sublimity but only get high enough to break their necks in a sharp fall. Again and again I demand that the second effort of human genius bears some obvious relation to the first. The sculptor accepts the challenge, so does the painter, so does the musician; why should the Jehovah-dreamer be an exception to the common rule of confirmation and proof?
We wait for the evidence! We insist upon having it. Then, so we don’t waste our time in idle expectancy, we can meanwhile call upon God, saying, “Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed by thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven!” (Matt. 6:9-10).
The God-idea made mean men valiant soldier-prophets; it broadened the piping voice of the timid inquirer into the thunder of the national teacher and leader. For brass it brought gold; for iron, silver; and wood, brass; and for stones, iron. Instead of the thorn it brought up the fir tree, and instead of the brier the myrtle tree, and it made the bush burn with fire.
Wherever the God-idea took complete possession of the mind, every faculty was lifted up to a new capacity and borne on to heroic attempts and conquests. The saints who received it subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of fire. Out of weakness they were made strong, waxed valiant in fight, turned to flight the armies of the aliens.
Anatomise the dead poet and the dead ass, and you will find as much genius in one as in the other; therefore there is no genius! Who that valued his life would set his foot on such a bridge as the rickety “therefore”? But some men will venture upon any bridge that seems to lead away from God.
A very simple anatomy will find the reason; it is because “they DO NOT LIKE to retain God in their hearts” (Rom. 1:28). It is not because of intellectual superiority, but because of moral distaste. An internal cancer accounts for this invincible aversion.