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March 26, 2021 1:00 am
Reading the book of Romans is like shining a light into darkness. In its pages we see ourselves as we really are. We find that, apart from God’s grace, we are capable of awful things. In fact, we’re morally bankrupt compared to our Creator. In this message we probe the darkness of the human heart, and the amazing light God shines into those hearts that come to believe in Jesus.Click here to listen (Duration 25:02)
Looking to Jesus reading the book of Romans is like shining a light into a dark closet as we see ourselves as we really are. We find that apart from God's grace we are capable of awful things today probe the darkness of the human heart and the amazing light. God said to those hearts come to believe in Jesus from the Moody Church in Chicago. This is with Dr. Erwin Sir clear teaching helps us make it across. Most people feel better at least as good as the next guy yesterday they do in the next guy is going to hell unless he believes in Jesus Christ.
We as humans are so easily deceived, and you know there's no area in which we are is easily deceived is when it comes to sexuality in the last chapter of my new book entitled, we will not be silenced. It is entitled strengthen what remains since the words of Jesus to the church in Sardis that I tell you this very quickly. I've been to Sardis and there are churches that are right next to pagan temples. Now let me ask you a question. How should we interpret that we could say all you know there was a pagan temple there in the church wanted to be where the darkness was the darkest but there's another way to interpret it.
And I think that's the way we should interpreted the church felt comfortable next to the pagan temples.
So Jesus writes this letter, and he says to them strengthen what remains and in my book, I suggest what Jesus might say to us if he were to write us a letter because at the end of the day it's the church of Jesus Christ that is standing against the darkness and there's no better way to stand against that darkness than to understand and appreciate the gospel which is, of course, this series of messages now for gift of any amount. This book can be yours.
Here's what you do you go to RTW offer.com RTW offer.com or call us at 1-888-218-9337.
Now let us open our Bibles, our minds and our hearts to once again here. Wonder of the gospel where is swings into the twin towers. Some of them.
I'm sure you knew that they would never come out alive again. Some of them.
God bless them, they rescued others and that they themselves die. Others perhaps went in to rescue others and then later on they died, even though perhaps they couldn't rescue anyone but they tried, and today we honor all of them and it is true that greater love has no man than this, but that a man lay down his life. His friend Jesus came to us on a rescue mission right away. From the beginning. The angel said that he shall save his people from their sin and the fire that he came to save us from is much greater than even the fire in the twin towers because the Bible says that our God is a consuming fire, and it is a fearful thing all into the hands of the living God.
One of the reasons that we really don't appreciate the grace of God and think that it's nice, but not absolutely necessary is that we have no contraception as to what it is that Jesus actually came to save us from blinded by sin to our own faults in our own inadequacies and failures. Forgetting the holiness of God. We don't understand the gospel and appreciated, and how far-reaching Jesus Christ coming really was.
In order to help us understand this.
The apostle wrote the book of Romans and I invite you to turn to chapter 1 today in chapter 1 of the book of Romans, and that this is a series in the book of Romans about how God came on a rescue mission and you'll notice that our first message on this series went to verse 17 in our verse 18 of chapter 1, for the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. First of all, were introduced to the wrath of God we think to ourselves that because God is love, somehow. Love cancels wrath. No, actually, love and wrath exist in God perfectly, but both of them exist and it is impossible for me today to over exaggerate God's fierce anger and hatred of sin. And yes of sinners to after all, that is, the sinners he punishes and we have lost sight of that in modern evangelicalism thinking that God is only love.
Forgetting the fact that he is a God of wrath. Just read the Old Testament but notice that the text says, and I think it's there in verse 24 is it not the text says that they suppress the truth in unrighteousness. Actually I should say that's verse 18 I'm ahead of myself. They suppress the truth in unrighteousness. The Greek word really does mean suppress it would be like taking a spring and squishing it together and then knowing that you have to hold it there because the moment you let go. It's going to go back to its original its original shape. Maybe another illustration would help. We've all taken a garden hose and then we used our thumb to try to hold back the water into and to be against the compression of the water and sometimes a little bit of its squiggles out here and then there's a stream of it there but we know this but the moment we let go. The stream of water will flow what Paul is saying is that is verified in other scriptures that we are born into this world as sinners and a great deal of our psychic energy is going to be spent managing our sin. A great deal of it is going to be spent by suppressing what we intuitively know to be true, and we are going to rationalize our guilt. We are going to cover our guilt and we are going to take care of our guilt primarily by living in darkness in the secrecy of our own hearts and in our own activities and this is what man now is going to do as he takes the truth and he suppresses that at angle opportunity in the interest of self-justification sale what truth is he suppresses well let's read the text and let's go through this passage, he says, verse 20 for his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and Godhead, and these divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world in the things that have been made, so they are without excuse. What Paul is going to say this is that when we were created by God. We were created with an innate knowledge of God. We know intuitively that there is a divine law within is called the conscience and that is come to us from God and Paul will expand upon this in the second chapter but also is saying that when we look at the heavens. We should know his eternal power. His eternal authority should be recognized by us, whether we have a Bible or not, whether we know the 10 Commandments or not there is with in single person a moral law so that we are without excuse, and what Paul is going to explain in this chapter is how we take that truth and we suppress it, and we rebel against God to become our own God and in this way, we actually are living in such a way that we are indeed de-self-deception is self-deception that we invite into our lives. We want to be the seat we grasp at any straw not to be deceived because we want to justify the way in which we want to live and we don't want to deal with the God of wrath and anger against sin.
That's true of all of us.
We don't want to deal with them. Now let's see how things develop. It says they are without excuse. Verse 21. I believe it is so that although they knew God, they did not honor him God or give thanks to him, but became futile in their thinking, their foolish hearts were darkened claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles. Therefore God gave them up to do the lust of their own hearts, their impurity to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves because they exchanged the truth of God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the creator who is blessed forever. Amen. In this passage today I'm going to outline three exchanges that are made by human being in order to suppress the truth and willingly accept deception. That's where were going first exchanges found there, right in verse 24 they exchanged the truth of God for a lie.
What happens is simply this. When Paul talks about the fact that they prefer idolatry, making God's in accordance with animals and everything else was the attraction in idolatry. In the Old Testament. Why is it that when you read Jeremiah and the prophets constantly. The people were going after pagan God. What was the big deal about these pagan gods. I didn't know what the answer was until I heard a lecture on a Hebrew scholar and Old Testament scholar who gave a lecture on it and pointed out that great attraction was sexual license you could do whatever you wish to know the God of Israel. He's got these Commandments thou shalt not commit adultery, though, shall not covet thy neighbor's wife pay the pagan God said you can do it all and they said we wanted these pagan God. So from now on, what man is going to try to do is to shut out the true God suppress the truth and he is going to ultimately end up.
Turns out, to worship himself. My desires are now going to become my God whatever I want to do is going to become my God and I'm going to do it in my way and in my time in what you have in this text is, they substitute the creature for the creator and they accept idolatry, but also there's going to be rebellion against the creator Paul indicates this when he says that God turned them over and then he says they accepted and worshiped the creature rather than the creator who is blessed forever.
Amen. Paul couldn't help but give a doxology about God's creation right there and in order to reject this creation in our day. It's done in a couple of ways.
One way is through a theistic evolution, the very absurd notion that nothing times.
Nobody equals everything in all of its complexity and I've read documents the grading's absurd that you can explain human life by random molecules bouncing around on their own, producing all of the complexity that with no intelligence guiding the way some possible but they would rather do that.
They turn the truth of the creator and they begin to worship creation and they turn against the creator and then of course there are other ways that this is also done that. We will point out in a moment what's going on here in the text. What is Paul saying that every one of us are born with his strong desire to replace the true God with our own desires and to come up with a God who always agrees with us no matter what we want to do. The God approves that even if we think of God beyond the world is the kind of God understands us the approves of everything that we are doing and we never are going to be judged by him and if we do mess up. I need to forgive us and to gloss over our sin. That is job and so what we do is we exchange one God for another. I need to tell you today that the God that America is worshiping is the God of the human body, how you look who you are in terms not of your character but your appearance and of course this is all related to sexuality as well. So that's the first exchange that is made in the text and then there's a second change in that's coming up now in verse for this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged the natural relations for those that are contrary to nature and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error. Now that we done away with God, and now that we've even done away with natural law, we can do whatever we want and as a result of that you have in today's society. Actually, the edible quest for same-sex marriage know what I want to say the next few moments. I'm not referring to those of you who struggle with same-sex attraction. But you know that an intimate relationship with someone of the same sex. You understand that that is a sinful relationship i.e. I speak with a great deal of compassion and let me explain to you why. Many years ago I was asked to speak to Exodus International, which is a ministry that you can go online and see and it helps people coming out of same-sex attraction and administers to them and shows them the pathway of hope and I was the speaker about 700 people were present. Turns out that at breakfast, I found myself seated with a group of young women, perhaps five or six.
And as we were eating together. I said to them, if you would feel comfortable would you share with me how did you get into this lifestyle. I need to tell you that it was enough to make anyone weak.
I mean there was brokenness. It was molestation by an uncle of father is being misused by men.
They were horrible stories of brokenness and if you talk to the men who were present they would get you a similar story of how they were inducted into it and how they were misused and Stefan and I began to see that a lot of what we see today in modern sexuality grows out of a tremendous amount of brokenness within people's lives. So I speak compassionately, but I hope I shall also speak clearly and now I'm talking about the wider homosexual agenda and same-sex marriage and what you discover today is that that movement is strongly opposed to natural law.
I remember speaking to someone who was a part of the movement, and I said you know even if you don't have a Bible, even if you don't believe that the Bible is God's word mean does not nature itself teach you that this is wrong. This is not the way it's to be and he spoke vehemently against natural because you see the Bible says that they suppress the truth and so there has to be a live put on this volcano somehow and that religion needs day, you know. Never before in history until the rise of modern Europe. Did you have homosexuals wanting to be married and to be recognized as married course throughout all of history. There's been homosexuality. But this is the first time there's been a clamor for the status that is equal or even above a heterosexual relationship and so that is what we are encountering today and I simply say this that there is a tsunami that is coming toward the church in this area and we have only seen a tip of that tsunami and we had better be ready for it.
Let me ask you a question. How is the truth suppressed.
How do you justify it. How do you make right, something which you intuitively know is wrong.
Couple of ways. First of all, you have an emphasis of saying I was born that way. I have the gay gene. I remember talking to someone who is a kleptomaniacs and he stole even when he knew he would be caught, and then he told me he said I have a kleptomaniacs he said I stole. Even when I was a boy, he said stealing is just a part of who I am. So you have a kleptomaniacs gene you have a pedophile gene, you have an alcoholic gene note. The problem with all of us is bad news, but there is good news at the end of the rainbow bad news.
We all have the sin gene and that's our problem right and send none all sinners laugh at this particular point, we have the sin, and sin builds up in all kinds of different ways in in the life of one person, it becomes this addiction in the life of another. It's that addiction and in the life of that is somebody else. Nowhere in the Bible do we find that God excuses us because we have the wrong genes and the fact is that we are born sinners. Yes we have the sin gene so there other ways that this is of course enforced, and that is legally I think for example of parents in the school in California.
This made headlines. They did not want their schoolchildren, especially in the very early days to be indoctrinated into homosexuality, but the law is that you must, and if not you will be penalized so they don't even want the parents to have authority over their own children in this area. This is the way it must be whenever same-sex marriage is instituted in whatever state there's immediately lawsuits against people who are photographers for weddings because if you are an independent agency even you have your own photographic studio if it's a same-sex marriage, and you say no. There's a lawsuit. Did you hear the story on the news about two women who were in a committed relationship and one of them through a procedure became pregnant and gave birth to a child and then this committed relationship broke up and the woman who was the natural mother became a Christian and she became a Christian. And then there was a dispute between the two.
Regarding parental rights and as a result of this dispute. The judge ended up giving this child to the woman, who wasn't the natural mother. Not because the natural mother was she an abuser, no wishing mistreating the child know that the reason was because anyone who believes the Bible and is going to be brought up in a home were same-sex relationships are not accepted is really ultimately an unfit parent expect more lawsuits along the same line and then of course, so without going into detail and I discuss this more in detail in the little booklet I wrote entitled the truth about same-sex marriage, but one of the great Jim Montross today is your a hater you don't agree with us.
How can you be so filled with hate, so the alternative that we are given is you either buy into this or where is all this hate coming from. One day I was giving a lecture at the University now setting things up before the lecture because I wanted to put my outline on the screen in a college student comes up to me and says do you believe that Christ is the only way to God. I said yeah I said that's what I'm to be speaking about here is how can you be filled with so much hate.
Why are you spreading so much hate, so folks remember this, you oppose, you are a hater.
If you ask the question as to why the same-sex marriage agenda has made so much progress in the United States. That's a longer issue. Also, it has to do with her concerted effort of propaganda, but one of the points is demonize anybody who disagrees with you and make them look so terrible that no one will be willing to be like them.
That's what's happening in society today and you know my friend. This is pastor Lutheran in my new book entitled, we will not be silenced.
I refer to that exactly as a matter fact, the radicals quote Hitler and they use him as an example of propaganda because Hitler said that with the right use of propaganda, you can make heaven appear like hell and hell like heaven. Now, in the book. Also, the last chapter is entitled strengthen what remains since based on the words of Jesus Christ to the church in Sardis and in that chapter I talk about what I think Jesus might say to us, and indeed it has to do with our submission to our culture's view on sexuality, but also instead of the gospel, but we are finding today is a false understanding of what is known as social justice, and then I think Jesus would talk to us about our relationship with the world because many no longer see the world as an enemy for gift of any amount.
This book can be yours. It's entitled, we will not be silenced responding courageously to our culture's assault on Christianity my heart in the book is for the church it's for us. How do we respond for a gift of any amount.
It can be yours. Here is what you do go to RTW offer.com that's RTW offer.com or call us at 1-888-218-9337 want to take a moment and thank the many of you who pray for us the end of the day.
We need your prayers.
We need your support we need to stand together. RTW offer.com or call us at 1-888-218-9337 you can write to us run into when 1635 LaSalle Boulevard Chicago, IL 60614 running to win is all about helping you find God's roadmap for your race of life both teaches that if only mankind suppresses the truth darkening their minds and committing moral perversion. All the while thinking that their enlightened next time more on how badly we need rescuing running to is sponsored by the Moody Church