Who’s fooling who?

Each year on April 1st people will go to great lengths to create plausible stories to fool the unwary, I wonder what your favourites are? One of the all time classics was the Panorama report in 1957 on a bumper spaghetti harvest in Switzerland. The BBC followed this up in 2008 with a trailer featuring flying Adélie Penguins. New technology provides fertile territory for plausible gags which in 2012 included a Lynx body spray app for your mobile phone and the stunning Peugeot RCZ which uses a psychochromatic coating to change colour according to the mood of the driver. Usually these gags are harmless fun and the ‘April fools’ who fall for it generally see the funny side and enjoy the joke.

Now it may surprise you to know that the bible has quite a bit to say about fools and foolishness – however it does not regard this as a joking matter. Over 60 times in the book of Proverbs we are given warnings about the danger that ‘fools’ will find themselves in. While the opening words of Psalms 14 and 53 say starkly that ’The fool says in his heart there is no God’.

Why such a strong statement? The Bible never sets out to provide a robust philosophical proof that God exists in the way you might prove a mathematical theorem. Rather it provides evidence of God’s existence through the wonders of creation and accounts of his interactions with historic individuals. In biblical terms, the existence of God is self evident. To ignore God or to declare that he does not exist is folly because God’s existence is not dependent upon our belief in him – he exists regardless. What a shock it will be for those who deny his existence on the day when each of us will meet him face to face! Far better to heed Isaiah’s instruction: ‘Seek GOD while he’s here to be found, pray to him while he’s close at hand.’ I urge you not to be found a fool who denies God, but search him out for yourself before it is too late.

In the meantime I hope that you have a lot of fun with pranks on April Fool’s day.

This blog post featured in the April 2013 edition of Hook Focus