INTELLIGENCE DARKENED AND DWARFED
IGNORANCE OF GOD
While the attack of evil was directed finally towards the capture of human WILL, the method of approach was that of suggesting the possibility of a development of the INTELLECT. By the assertion of the right to exercise the will outside all limitation, it was declared that man should know. In his attempt to grasp knowledge, man alienated himself from the light of daily fellowship with God (Gen. 3:8), and thus his intelligence was darkened and dwarfed, rather than enlightened and enlarged. The result of this is so far reaching in the being of man, that it is important to devote a discussion of the fact of man's ignorance of God, resulting from sin. In order to a proper understanding of this, there must be a correct conception of man's original capacity for the knowledge of God; and secondly, an understanding of the injury that happened to this capacity; in order that thirdly, there may be an explanation of the idolatry which resulted.
In dealing with MAN'S CAPACITY FOR GOD, the thought again gathers round the threefold fact of his personality, that as to spiritual essence, man has INTELLIGENCE, EMOTION, AND WILL, these being but a shadowing forth of the Divine personality. These three facts in man are interrelated, so that the appreciation of the intelligence will determine the action of the emotion, and finally of man's capacity for the knowledge of God. It would seem as though in the whole creation, man is the only being to whom God could perfectly reveal Himself, and this fact defines the dignity of human nature. In this connection a statement in the beginning of the Gospel of John has to be carefully noted. "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him; and without Him was not anything made that hath been made. In Him was life; and the life was the light of men." (John 1:1-4) The declaration, "in Him was life," is a general and comprehensive one, declaring that all forms of life are related to the living Word. The announcement that "the life was the light of men," (not plants and animals) is a particular declaration revealing an essential truth concerning the nature of man. This cannot be said concerning the life of any plant, nor of animal life, until in the scale of being man is reached. In man's life became consciousness of God, and capacity for the understanding of Him, This statement of John of course has far wider application. It certainly indicates the truth that perfect light concerning manhood has shined in the Word Incarnate, but as Jesus was the fulfillment of an original purpose, it becomes evident that according to that purpose, man is capable of intelligent appreciation of, and communion with God. The whole process of creation was carried forward through the Word of the Eternal, and every form of life exists and subsists through the energy of that Word (Col. 1:16-17). In man however, life was first of such a nature as to comprehend the Creator. In the writings of the apostle Paul it is evident how he perpetually recognizes as one of the most glorious results of the redemption of man, the fact that there is restored to him the knowledge of God. Especially in the epistles of the imprisonment, when writing to the churches of his love, he thanks God for their faith, for their hope, for their love, but still is laboring for them in prayer; and the overmastering desire that he has for them is that they may come to the full knowledge of God. In the creation of man, God originated a being capable of knowing Him. For the comprehension of wisdom there must be intelligence, and in man God created an intellect equal to such wonderful knowledge. Adam was capable at his outset being capable of communicating and learning from His Creator, and that after first standing up from the ground. And what a mind he possessed naming the animals with meaningful names. He was not a monkey standing erect and being changed by God at that point, a sorrowful human attempt to deal with creation being 6 days in length.