I will bless the LORD at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth. My soul makes its boast in the LORD; let the humble hear and be glad. Psalm 34:1-2 (esv)
A Rock Speaks
I had a world history class in my 10th grade year in high school. My teacher was an avowed atheist and was vocal in his atheism and especially in his scorn of Christians and Christianity. I remember him saying “The law says I have to give the views of Christianity so I have to briefly cover it.” It was very brief and he never mentioned it again unless it was in a negative context.
I don't remember much this man taught except for one day when he covered ancient Israel. As he went along I recall one of his statements on the subject that seemed ironic; he said, “The time of king David and his son Solomon were the golden years of the nation of Israel.” I remember thinking 'Yes, and if you read the Psalms you would know why.' Frankly, I was shocked that he even admitted it but eventually came to realize his statement only verified the historical accuracy of the Bible and testified of the blessing God poured out on Israel through the righteous life of David and the holy and sound impact of his psalms. Without realizing it he inadvertently gave glory to God's work, love, and grace in King David's life, a man after God's own heart (1st Samuel 13:14, Acts 13:22).
David's life was less than pristine. Yet through all of his rebellious actions God still gave him the promise that a member of his family would always be seated on his throne and it would last forever. Jesus Christ was a descendant of David through His Father Joseph (Matthew 1:1-17) and His mother Mary (Luke 3:23-38). As God's only beloved Son (Matthew 3:17) He would be the One who would sit on his father David's throne in an eternal reign (Luke 1:32).
There's no escaping God's plans even to a convinced atheist glorifying the works of God without knowing it. The age of David and Solomon was indeed blessed but the Golden Age will arrive at the Second Coming of Christ when He restores Israel and the Jewish people to their promised and honored place among the nations (Isaiah 10:20, Jeremiah 31:7, Micah 2:12, Zechariah 8:23). He will begin an eternal reign of righteous dominion of all things. The Bible says God is slow to anger and mighty in power (Nahum 1:3). He is merciful in His restraint to forebear punishing the wicked yet is marvelous in His power to accomplish His redemptive design for humanity, the Earth, and even the universe.
In His triumphal entry into Jerusalem His disciples went before Him praising God and Jesus as His Christ. The religious leaders were incensed and told Him to rebuke them. Christ replied, “I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out” (Luke 1940). For the Lord of Hosts has purposed, and who can thwart Him? His hand is outstretched, so who can turn it back? (Isaiah 14:27). God will not be silenced. He can proclaim His praise and glory in the most unusual places and ways. He can even do it from the lips of a rock-hearted atheist.