Do we never “consider God unless compelled to”? Probably this is true of all human beings whether they are believers or not for every human being is capable of hypocrisy. Calvin quotes Statius in that “fear first made gods in the world”. So often it is fear that brings people to know God: it may arise in circumstances of illness, bereavement or tragedy or through a sense of pointless existence. Calvin seems to distinguish between those who do know god and those who claim they do through some “semblance of religion”. In his eyes such people are not open to the “bridle of the Holy Spirit”.
How would our world change if we were open to the “bridle of the Holy Spirit”? Calvin describes hypocrites as thinking they can win God’s favour “through frivolous little trifles and worthless little observances” so much so that trust is placed in these and not in God Himself. Calvin insists that these people who are guilty of hypocrisy are not utterly ignorant of God, would you agree with this?
How many people would you know who would claim to be faithless but whose lives bear fruit for the living God?