In the passage Calvin illustrates concisely and colourfully how human beings reject God’s goodness even in the creation of their bodies. He describes the human body as “exquisite workmanship” yet explains that human beings “substitute nature for God”. How many of the advertisements we encounter day by day fall into this snare?
Could Calvin be mocking those who substitute their own bodies for God? In a reference to the Cyclopes – a malformed giant who assisted the god Zeus in his war against the Titans in Greek mythology Calvin wonders about humans in their shameless war against God.
Whilst we now know the “course of atoms” that cook food and drink and turns some components of food into excrement, some in to blood and some into the energy for day to life we still do not know everything. It is the things that we do not know that point to the signs of God’s divinity yet many according to Calvin set God “aside” from them. In the twenty first century humans are just as guilty of this as they were in the sixteenth century. Yet who would claim that human beings have made progress?