In Deuteronomy 4:28, God through Moses described the idols Israel would worship once they were scattered among the nations saying, “And there ye shall serve gods, the work of men’s hands, wood and stone, which neither see, nor hear, nor eat, nor smell.”
In scripture, God often distinguishes Himself as “the living God” in contrast to such idols constructed in the imagination of our own evil hearts (Jeremiah 18:12; Jeremiah 23:16-17).
When we consider that none knowingly worship a god that they perceived to be false or dead, then we better understand the necessity to heed God’s command for all to repent (Acts 17:30).
For as sinners born in spiritual darkness, we all initially worship an idol of our own imagination, imagining that our god indeed does see, hear, eat, and smell – that He is the one true and living God and not just a mere “likeness.” (Deuteronomy 4:16-18, 23, and 25).
In casting down such imaginations (2 Corinthians 10:5), it is instructive to discern from scripture whether your God truly sees, hears, eats, and smells by considering whether or not what your God sees, hears, eats, and smells is consistent with the revelation of God’s Word.
(1) What does your God see? Did He see of the travail of His soul and find total and complete satisfaction there in His finished work for His seed – for all those given unto Christ by the Father and for whom He lived and died? (Isaiah 53:10-11)
(2) What does your God hear? Does He hear the sinner’s plea for unadulterated mercy (propitiation / favor unmerited by the sinner but by way satisfaction to His holy justice) and that to the exclusion of all else – a plea from one who desires to be found in Christ based solely upon the just satisfaction Christ made at the cross as the elect sinner’s Substitute and accounted to that sinner by God’s free imputation? (Luke 18:9-15)
(3) What does your God eat? Did the God-man fully consume the wrath of God that was poured out on Him at the cross so that all whose sins He bore must be declared righteous in Him? (Hebrews 2:9; Matthew 26:39; Matthew 26:42; Romans 5:9)
(4) What does your God smell? Does your God smell the “…sweetsmelling savour…” of the sacrifice Christ made at the cross that demands life for all those whose sins He bore? (Ephesians 5:2)
Do these passages which distinguish what the true and living God sees, hears, eats, and smells, align with your own persuasion as to how God feely justifies sinners?
Does your God justify sinners based upon the Person and finished work of Christ alone?
If not, then as Paul described the elect at Thessalonica, I pray God will be pleased to grant you faith and repentance so that you too might be identified with all the saints of God who have “…turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God;” (1 Thessalonians 1:9).
By Randy Wages