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September 8, 2020 8:00 am
Listen closely, as Adrian Rogers explains grave dangers of idolatry. Why is idolatry greatest because it is a repudiation of the very purpose of my why why why this creation, God created God. You do know him and love him down annual down in your heart you have a desire to know him and left. Welcome to Leavenworth finding featuring the inspiring and convicting lessons claimed pastor Bible teacher Adrian Rogers. An idol is anything you love serve fear or trust more than God, and Paul Saul idolatry everywhere he turned in Athens now today in our cities in our country, sometimes even in our churches. We can see idolatry will worship something because mankind is incurably religious. How did Paul deal with the idolatry that he met in Greece. How can we stand firm in our pagan world.
If you have your Bible turned acts chapter 17 will begin in verse 16 and once again here's Adrian Rogers now so that I will talk to you about the day is taken here, probably 17 chapter book by the apostle Paul is in the great city of Athens, the intellectual and cultural center of the ancient world, the glory of Athens was overwhelming. As a result of this cultural superiority as a result of this intellectualism, it was a city that was filled with cynicism. It was a city that was filled with snobbery.
It was a city that was filled with debate and Paul is there and Paul is going to share Jesus Christ is going to meet strong resistance and were gonna learn some lessons because what happened so long ago. Brand is happening today in our society. This Scripture that we go to study is not just what has happened is what is happening is not just what God has said the other so long ago, is what God is saying to our society today because history is like a broken phonograph record, it just keeps repeating itself. There are three things that Paul met in ancient Athens those of the three things that you will meet where you live in Chicago, New York, Cincinnati, Dallas, Miami, Memphis, what three things did Paul meet there in Athens so long ago. First of all, he met superstitious idolatry. What is, and I do down big plane and strike an idol is anything that you love more fear, more serve more our trust more than Almighty God mandated that again listen to me and I lose anything that you love more fear, more serve more our trust more than Almighty God. An idol is whatever is in first place in your life that is an island. Whatever your heart clings to what ever your heart trust in that is your idol by matching this that idolatry is the greatest sin that a man a woman a boy or girl can commit.
Why because it transgresses the greatest commandment. What is the greatest commandment, thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all our heart all my soul I strangle my mind first and great commandment. Idolatry therefore has to be the greatest sin because it breaks the greatest commandment. Idolatry. Paul faced idolatry Americans face idolatry. Anything you love more fear, more trust, more serve more than God is an idol Jesus said seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, we have no right to worship anything other than Almighty God. The second thing Paul face this day and Athens was self-righteous orthodoxy self righteous orthodoxy look in verse 17 therefore disputed he in the synagogue with the Jews and with the_. This did about persons and in the market daily with them that met him. Now Paul is not facing idolatry.
He's facing those who believe in the one true God but they are self-satisfied, they do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Savior and Lord. These are the respectable sentence. The apostle Paul had been the same kind of a self-righteous bigot doing met the Lord Jesus Christ on the road to Damascus and had his life transformed which are going to meet many who may not be open without idolaters, but they going to be self-righteous and then I can see the need of the Savior is 1/3 category that the apostle Paul met this day in Athens and this was sophisticated philosophy, sophisticated philosophy.
These are not the superstitious idolaters. These are not the self-righteous Orthodox, but these are they who see themselves as intellectual giants.
We are to face those looking to accept the 70 verse 18 then certain philosophers of the Epicureans and of the Stoics encountered him some said, what will this babbler say others saw him.
He seems to be a setter forth of strange God's because he preached under them. Jesus and the resurrection not already told you that Athens was not only the cultural but the intellectual center of the world at that time and philosophers clustered to the city philosophy abounded. What is philosophy. The word literally means a level of knowledge.
Somebody said philosophy is that system that tells us what we already know and words. We can understand as philosophy met the need of a man's heart.
Do you want some noted philosopher said about philosophy scope in our world-famous philosopher got to the bottom line and he said this life is a curse of endless cravings and endless unhappiness will for him.
Philosophy was a dead-end road. Huxley, brilliant man, Julius Huxley wrote this. It seems to me he's looking at the human race, and he says it seems to me that we are a cancer on the globe. That's philosophy Bertram Russell arrogant, conceited but honest enough to say philosophy proved a washout to me. H. G. Wells, the noted historian and philosopher said this and I quote, unless there is a more abundant scheme before mankind.
This game of space and time is a bad joke and laugh writing across the mysteries our own Dr. Robert G.
Lee, former pastor this church said philosophy is a chunk of cloud bank bloated with the night when he knew that philosophy the a lot of knowledge can never satisfy the deepest longing of the human heart and ears.
The apostle Paul denigrates it Athens and he sees this idolatry. He sees us orthodoxy.
He sees this philosophy. Not only are you going to confront these things. Number two, you can express confidence in your faith. I want you to leave this I want you to throw up your hands and say well what is the use them were up against God's too great for us all know you not, you can express confidence in your faith look you will not accept the 17 verses 19 through 21 and they took him at his pole and brought him to their applicants say, may we know what new Dr. and whereabouts speakers. They always want their ears tickled, I said let's let the strength to talk about bring us certain strange things to our ears, but we would know therefore what these things mean for all the Athenians and strangers which were there spent their time and nothing else. But the detail are to hear some new thing this babbler will say I have placed their call Mars Hill. I've been up on Mars Hill many times where they would come and make their discourses. Paul has an opportunity now remember, he's in the city of Athens.
He seen all of this and they say hey but let's hear from you if that had been you, what would you say would you be ready to give an answer. Now Paul is given a great opportunity to speak. Remember now that he's looking around at the accouterments of the Golden age of Pericles.
Remember now he's in the shadow of the philosophers Plato and Socrates and Zeno and Epicurus remember now that all of these view holding indescribable beauty is all around him, but the apostle Paul knew that this human wisdom and beauty were magnificent. Foolishness without the Lord Jesus Christ. Religion was a mockery and beauty was baying without the Lord Jesus Christ and so Paul looks at them. He almost says something humorous.
He realizes they had covered all of the bases.
Look, if you will that in verse 22 then Paul stood in the midst of Mars Hill and Sadie men of Athens, I perceive that in all things. You are too superstitious for I passed by, and beheld your devotions and I found an altar with this inscription to the know God whom therefore ye ignorantly worship him, declare I am the Paul walking down the streets is a God. Here is a God here. Here's a God. Here is a guardian or guardian in case they must they put a God all Michelle said the unknown God would own offending whoever is we go to worship him is and what it would own account all the bases like the woman marry form in a succession. She married a banker and then she married an actor. Then she married a minister. Then she married an undertaker one for the money to the show three to get ready for to go to current elevation is what I would now Paul begins to speak.
I want you to see what Paul says about God, what would you said Paul begins to mention the one true God. He begins to stand for the faith in a pagan society. Number one he says this, that God is the God of creative power. Ask 17 verse 24. He says God that made the world and all things therein saying that he is the Lord of heaven and earth well is not in temples made with hands made is worshiped with men's hands, as though he needed anything, seeing he giveth to all life and breath and all things what Paul said about this God is. He made everything he is the God of creative power. Therefore, he stands above and distinct from creation. Now what is happened in America today is this, we've gone from father, God the mother. Have you noticed how much religion there is based on the earth today in our public schools today.
We cannot celebrate Easter, but we can celebrate Earth Day so we can go out worship dirt out of Paul with this one statement.
He manages all the gods. All the gods of Athens and he says you can't put this God in the corner in your temple. You can't put this God only shelf he is the God of creation, but also number two. He's the God of personal love looking verses 26 and following and have made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of your and have to determine the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation. I noticed this.
Why did he create them that they should seek the Lord if haply they might feel after him and find him, though he be not far from every one of us, for in him we live and move and have our being. Here's a God of love who loves us why is idolatry. The greatest sin because it is a repudiation of the very purpose of why why you exist why this planet. Why this creation, God made you God created you. God created you to know him and love him and down in your heart down in your heart you have a desire to know him and love him as a pastor friend Nelson price tested Marietta, Georgia. He had a friend named Claude Brown. While Brown had a trucking firm, Claude Brown before he employs a body gives him a polygraph test. One of the questions on the polygraph test is do you believe in God so lie detector test. He has a sworn affidavit from the man who gave the polygraph test he said in every instance in every instance, when a person professes to be an atheist becomes that question.
He says no I don't believe in God, the polygraph says he's lying. Everyone in the human heart Christ by the tempter feelings library that grace can restore what is Paul saying he is the God of creation is the God of infinite love who made us to know him and worship him and he is the God of supernatural salvation look in verse 31. Because God has appointed a day in which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom you have ordained wear of the given assurance of the all man in that he raised him from the dead. Now Paul is talking about the resurrection of the dead. He's talking about a Savior therefore was suffered, bled, and died on the cross was buried walked out of the grave and shown to be the son of God with power by the resurrection of the dead did not ashamed to preach the resurrection of Christ.
There on Mars Hill.
Some thought it was insane, but he did. You should expect converts to your faith. You should expect converts to your fate.
Listen, there's going to challenge us to your fate, but expect converts the fate when you share the Lord Jesus Christ. I can tell you after many years of ministry and preaching. There are people who will believe notice and accept the 17 versus 32 and 34 and when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some law and other said we would hear the again of this matter.
So Paul departed from among them. Howbeit certain men claim on the him and believe and let me just stop right there. The gospel has power to change lives. This morning, and every time when I preach anytime you witness there will be one of three responses.
First of all, there will be derision.
Some law some life you will you be laughed at for your fate.
Did you know that some people rather face a lion then face ridicule.
What a fearful weapon that derision is they left at the apostle Paul met Paul was brilliant and equivalency of a trip, a PhD but he was willing to be thought a fool for Christ sake, some of you ladies are being laughed at by your unsaved husband's so you can just Google may be laughed at specially in the University by your sophisticated professor because you will fashion Bible believing some of you businessmen may be laughed at because you keep a Bible on your desk and bow your head in prayer in the cafeteria and thank God for the food you will be laughed at Harry on side Bouma pastor Moody Church in Chicago was on the ferry boat in there going from Oakland to San Francisco and they were singing in fellow shipping and a manchild and so are you doing, he said were worshiping God. He said your bunch of phone is less true bunch of fools, but we are fools for Christ sake whose will you hopefully you some and that other said we will hear you again not only derision but delay they just put it all. But the Bible says was not myself tomorrow. For thou knowest not want a day may bring full and the some of you who are not going to laugh but you just simply say, well, not today, perhaps tomorrow some of the time I give my heart to Jesus Christ. What the devil's favorite ways to send the soul to hell someone is wiser said the road to hell is paved with good intentions. If you ever intend to give your heart to Jesus.
Do it now that was derision there was delay, but there was decision and the Bible says and others believed I've been preaching this book long enough to know ladies and gentlemen, there's power in the gospel that I know that not every seed will sprout, but I know when you preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. When you show this God to be the God of creation, the God of personal love, the God of salvation. The God who made it all for something in the human heart that will say yes that is the true, and I will accept that as my truth is you at the Civil War there was a steamboat in the Mississippi River that made the trip from Vicksburg down to New Orleans and that boatlift every Wednesday was the precious riverboat on the old Mississippi one night, a fire broke out in this that steamboat and the captain said to the first mate go down the halls. The corridor is wake and the people telling the ship's own fire do it as quickly as you can have an alarm system. This first mate got up and began to run down the halls of that ship talking on the door to get patient profile and what happened there was some thought it was a joke and they just laughed and went back to sleep. I thought perhaps it was a prime bill. Others who got angry, they thought, perhaps some drunk did know what he was talking about. The rollover went back to sleep. There were others who were sleeping so soundly. They never ever even heard the knock. There were others who awaken get the things got out before the fire closed the corridors and save the lives derision will laugh your way into hell delay don't turn over and go back to sleep.
Decision give your heart to Jesus for listen to me.
I didn't come here to make a talk I can tell you about Jesus, detailing God love it wants to save you and will save you if you trust. If I can do for you. I will but I want you to come to Jesus and do it today if you want to be saved. Christ and his at the door if you will hear his voice and open the door he will come in with you forever like this dear God, I need you I want you Jesus.
You died to save me your promise to save you shed your blood to save me if I would trust you. I trust I believe you are the son of God. I receive you into my heart today.
Now, this moment now is my Lord and Savior. I give you my life and I receive your life into me saying the Lord Jesus and begin now to make me the person you want me to be. Give me the courage to make it public in your name I pray that prayer just now. We would love to know about it and would like to offer you insightful resource on our website. It's our discovery, Jesus page you find answers you may need about your new faith as well as a response section. Let us know how this message has affected you today go to LWF.org/radio and click the tab that says Discover Jesus welcome to God's forever family.
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