Acts 17: 22-31
Paul then stood up in the meeting of the Areopagus and said: “Men of Athens! I see that in every way you are very religious. For as I walked around and looked carefully at your objects of worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: TO AN UNKNOWN GOD. Now what you worship as something unknown I am going to proclaim to you.
“The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by hands, as if he needed anything, because he himself gives men life and breath and everything else. From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find, though he is not far from each of us. For in him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’
Therefore since we are God’s offspring, we should not think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone–an image made by man’s design and skill. In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent. For he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to all men by raising him from the dead.”
Some people around the world, perhaps even in our churches, have accepted that there are different ways of seeking God. The message Paul was sharing with the people of Athens is still God’s message for us today. God is not a lifeless image, made by man of gold, silver or stone. God is alive, Creator of the heavens and the earth and of all mankind, giving life and breath to all living creatures and has need of nothing. We need not be in ignorance any longer, God has given us his proof by raising his Son, Jesus the Christ from the dead. He is also the One who will judge the world. We are his offspring and all need to reach out to him in repentance.
Father you are the only true and living God, Creator of heaven and earth and all things including mankind. Thank you for drawing us to you in repentance and sorrow of our sin and disobedience. Help us not to fall into the trap of people or things being more important than our relationship with you. Awaken us to live our lives in honor or you. We ask in Jesus’ name, amen.