“…since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—His eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse (Romans 1:19,20).
How would you start a spiritual conversation with someone who claimed to know nothing of the God of the Bible?
I would start with the concept of the “Incomprehensibility of God”.
That does not mean that God is incomprehensible, but rather that we can know anything of Him only in the ways – and to the extent – that He has chosen to reveal Himself.
And fortunately for us, He has opted to reveal much of Who He is to every person, in every place, and in every era. Creation is a part of general revelation. And what we rightly deduce concerning God from what we see is referred to as “natural theology”.
In his compelling argument to launch the book of Romans, the Apostle Paul makes a rather audacious claim: there is no such thing as a real atheist.
Paul says that every person knows not only that God exists – the evidence of creation shouts out to every observer – but each of us also knows that He is eternally all-powerful and the eternal Deity in sovereign control of all worlds.
But how can that be? Every day the people we encounter – from every educational background and across the intellectual spectrum – say that they do not believe in the existence of God?
Paul is blunt and somewhat abrupt: their denial is not an intellectual problem. It’s a moral problem.
The truth about God is not obscure or hard to find. It does not require a trained investigator to seek incomprehensible clues, or a police dog to sniff out His ethereal trail. The Deity is known by the elite, and even by children.
And no one will ever be able to say, “I would have believed, if only there had been sufficient evidence of Your existence!” Paul is saying the repudiation of God is never a failure of cognitive understanding.
The clear proof of Who God is penetrates every mind, “so that [we] are without excuse”!
Takeaway: Atheists (those who deny God), agnostics (those who assert that God’s existence cannot be known), and even those who concede His existence but refuse to submit to Him have a single problem: deep down in their souls they know God is there, but despise the God whom they know exists.
~my thinking on this issue has been assisted by the work of RC Sproul on the topic of natural theology.