I’m writing this on the day that Stephen Hawking passed away. At the age of 76, he was considered in the same category as Albert Einstein. The intellect of a person such as Hawking is to be respected and admired, but I wonder if his intellect forced him to conclude that everything was created through natural effects. I wonder, too, how many Christians shared the truth of the Gospel with him.
Paul wrote to a community of believers in the church at Corinth about how some looked for worth in what they knew, or human wisdom. He encouraged the people not to fret that they were being accused of foolishness for following and believing that Jesus was who He claimed to be, and that He had risen from the grave. Let’s just look.
“The message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction! But we who are being saved know it is the very power of God. As the Scriptures say, 'I will destroy the wisdom of the wise and discard the intelligence of the intelligent.' So where does this leave the philosophers, the scholars, and the world’s brilliant debaters? God has made the wisdom of this world look foolish. Since God in his wisdom saw to it that the world would never know him through human wisdom, he has used our foolish preaching to save those who believe. It is foolish to the Jews, who ask for signs from heaven. And it is foolish to the Greeks, who seek human wisdom. So when we preach that Christ was crucified, the Jews are offended and the Gentiles say it’s all nonsense. But to those called by God to salvation, both Jews and Gentiles, Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God. This foolish plan of God is wiser than the wisest of human plans, and God’s weakness is stronger than the greatest of human strength…. God has united you with Christ Jesus. For our benefit God made him to be wisdom itself. Christ made us right with God; he made us pure and holy, and he freed us from sin. Therefore, as the Scriptures say, 'If you want to boast, boast only about the Lord.'” 1 Corinthians 1:18-25; 30-31
I pray that Stephen Hawking has met his Creator, Savior, and Lord, and I hope that he can say that he was wrong to have pursued a path that led him and others away from the truth of God. I know that God has pursued him and waited patiently for him to turn his intelligence toward the One who blessed him with intelligence for God’s glory and for humanity’s benefit, and I also know that God will not force us to love and accept Him. He has given us the freedom to choose how we will live and whom we will follow.
For those who believe in, trust in, and celebrate the resurrection of Christ, there is now no condemnation, no fear of rejection, and no being enslaved to the sin that tries to separate us from the creator, sustainer, and redeemer of life, Jesus Christ. The resurrection is the proof that Jesus is the Son of God and that He has set us free, and who the Son sets free is truly free. So, continue to share, as you are given opportunity, this truth of God’s love for all people. God is good all the time! And all the time, God is good!
In Christ’s Love,
Rob, Romans 12