Backing up a couple psalms . . . The apostle Paul, in Romans 3, quotes from Psalm 14 in order to demonstrate that we, left on our own, do not seek after God. In fact, not only do we not seek God, we are such fools that we say, “There is no God.” And, divorcing ourselves from God and his good and righteous instruction, we “do abominable deeds.” Apart from faith, the fruit of divine regeneration, we “have all turned aside,” “have become corrupt,” and “there is none who does good, not even one.” Oh my, this declaration seems so harsh and hopeless; well, yes, it is, but only if considered without reference to God’s grace.
Remember, only two chapters later, in Romans 5, Paul is able to declare, “God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). Jesus did not die for righteous people but for unrighteous people. Think about that! We might be willing to lay down our lives for a good person but for a wicked person? Oh, no! Who would give up life for the sake of someone who has deliberately and consistently done wrong? Such a person is not, we reason, worthy of another dying in his or her place. But Christ has done that for us! Amazing! We can affirm the testimony of David that “God is with the generation of the righteous” (14:5), that the Lord is our refuge (14:6), that salvation has come (14:7) and, with Jacob and Israel, we will rejoice and are glad!
God loved the world of sinners lost
And ruined by the fall;
Salvation full, at highest cost,
He offers free to all.
O ‘twas love, ‘twas wondrous love,
The love of God to me;
It brought my Saviour from above,
To die on Calvary! --Martha M. Stockton (1872)