Many men were like that–stones in the path, weeds to tangle weary feet–thorns that lacerated and poisoned.”
–Zane Grey (Arizona Ames)
“Corrupt people walk a thorny, treacherous road; whoever values life will avoid it.”
–Proverbs 22:5 (NLT)
“Only fools say in their hearts, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, and their actions are evil; not one of them does good!”
–Psalm 14:1 (NLT)
“I regard the brain as a computer which will stop working when its components fail. There is no heaven or afterlife for broken down computers; that is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark.”
How does one harden their heart so? Where was it along the journey of life that a person, such as Hawking, says “NO” to their Creator and refuses to listen to the wooing of the Holy Spirit? There is a point, where the Spirit will no longer seek after an individual.
Perhaps part of the blame is the lack of convicting power in today’s preaching. A couple of things to ponder. Why doesn’t the Spirit convict people today when a preacher brings his message? Maybe because the preacher isn’t on the “same page” with the Spirit. How much time does the preacher put in prayer for his sermon? The Spirit should bring conviction when the Word is being preached. Just perhaps the Word isn’t being preached, but one of compromise, tolerance, and the building of personal self-esteem.
Listen! Whenever truth is preached it will bring conviction of sin. Whenever there is a strong presence of God there will be the conviction of sin. Compromise of the truth will not bring conviction, in fact, it will grieve the Spirit and drive Him away. Legalism, ha! The purpose of the Law makes a person conscious of sin! “For no one can ever be made right with God by doing what the law commands. The law simply shows us how sinful we are.” (Romans 3:20, NLT) The Law convicts man; perhaps that is why there is such a demand not to post the Ten Commandments.
When a person is confronted with the truth and the convicting power of the Holy Spirit; that person will either cry out to God, or he will hardened his heart against God. The Holy Spirit will either convict a person or He will enrage a person to the point that person turns completely away from God.