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How the Fall Affects Us

Summit Life / J.D. Greear
The Truth Network Radio
January 13, 2020 9:00 am

How the Fall Affects Us

Summit Life / J.D. Greear

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January 13, 2020 9:00 am

We often look back at our country’s history of slavery, oppression, and racism and think, “How could they have been so blind?” And yet we continue to practice the same idolatry today, where we reject God as the center and ruler of our lives. As Pastor J.D. returns to the “Romans” series in this message, he shows us why, thank God, it doesn’t matter what kind of sinner we are but what kind of Savior Jesus is.

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Today on Senate life with Katie Greer, the insertion of our self in the center rather than God has affected every single part of our lives, our rejection of God at the center of our lives has corrupted every other part of our lives. Every part of our lives, literally every dimension of our lives is affected by the disorder that comes from putting ourselves in the center instead of God down our country's history of slavery, oppression and racism in think we have been so blind yet we continue to practice the same doubt today where we reject God as the center and ruler of our lives as Pastor Jaeger shows us why it doesn't matter what kind of sinner we are kind of Savior. Jesus is the text this week from Romans chapter 1 has a very mature content. As Paul gets into some pretty raw stuff as you take on this message ahead of all excess last week. Literally I put you off right in the middle of a passage like take just a few minutes. Your walk you through the poles, setting up his argument because in order to understand the last part of Romans one, you got understand the first on board what he saying there one Polish is demonstrated to us that every single person, Jew or Gentile religious or irreligious. All of us have essentially the same problem and the problem is is that all of us are turned away from the knowledge of God that was made known to us in creation and in our consciences. God has sufficiently revealed himself.

Paul says to all people.

He revealed himself both to us in creation and in us from our consciences. At least enough for us to respond to that revelation, with humility and all. The problem was we didn't want to know the truth about the glorious all ruling holy God.

And that's because we wanted to be glorious, all wise and all ruling and so we suppress the knowledge of God that was evident in creation and from our conscience so when it comes to the knowledge of God. I told you we all know we all know but sometimes we don't know because we don't want to know that suppression of the truth Paul explains takes two forms. One is an irreligious form and irreligious expression of suppression think atheism or agnosticism or you just deny that God exists. Paul is saying the only way that you can arrive at that conclusion is to have a heart that is biased against the obvious evidence of an all-powerful creating all ruling God and I will just say from my own experience. If you listen closely to an atheist will almost always hear that their disbelief is driven by some implication that comes from their being in all glorious, all wise God, and that implication drives how they interpret the evidence in creation the same excellent well if there really was a God and wiser so much suffering, if there really was a God why there's so many different religions. Why don't more people know in the way that you say that he is something like that. That's the irreligious expression of suppression is that is that we just deny that that God exists. The religious version of suppression, Paul explains, is that we substitute out knowledge of the true God with a version of God that we can control. I pointed out to you that throughout history mankind in different cultures, warts and all kind of different gods.

But they've all had one thing in common and that is they were conceptions of God that we could control and conceptions of God that existed to serve us, is what Paul means when he says in verse 25 they exchanged the truth of God for a lie and they worshiped and served. What is been created instead of the create tour who is praise forever. Amen. I explained to you that this kind of worship occurs. Whether you are formerly religious or not. Anthropologists say that we are telling creatures delegates is a fancy word that means we already purposed people, which means we always find some greater cause to live for. We find something to which we attached ultimate value something we feel like without that one thing life would not even be worth living is like Jordan Peterson, the Canadian psychologist who is not a Christian, says he says there really no true atheist. Practically speaking, there just those who acknowledge the gods are worshiping and those who do not.

Even if you grew up as a Christian, I explained, chances are it was something besides God that took the ultimate central place in your heart. Maybe it was even while you were growing up in church, it was getting the approval of your friends. It was accomplishing your dreams was getting married and having a boyfriend having a family one day something mattered more to you.

You gave more glory to that created thing that you did to God.

By the way, the word for glory in Hebrews work abode and it literally means weight when you give something glory you are giving it away a godlike weight God was supposed to be the one that made life worth living.

He was the one. His will was supposed to dominate your thinking pleasing him was supposed to be your focus fellowship with him us was to be her life. Instead you found something else to give that godlike weight to the approval of your friends material success romance. Whatever you put in that in that category. That's the natural shape all explains of every human heart. Even if you grew up in church and some of my travels overseas out going to these temples that are erected to a foreign God.

Remember being one of them, a while ago over endive somewhere, in Asia and there was going.

This templates is gigantic of a beautiful temple in the middle of it is about 25 foot statue of a goddess who has multiple breast on multiple arms and you watch these worshipers come in and prostrate themselves before the statue with many of them were very emotional. Many had traveled a lot of miles to get back to this some poor, some of them and taking a little money they had appointed out an offering before this statue of this God, and remember being in that temple and just at one point, just feeling so overwhelmed at what I felt like was the spiritual darkness and the oppression that I just had to leave I had to walk outside to get out away from them and I remember later finding myself just going back over that incident in my mind and and feeling sorry for the people there and thanking God, in my heart that I wasn't I would like them but then in the middle that fought it just occurred to me I had a whole list of things in my heart that have taken God's place just like that statue head and there's things that I've given godlike way to my heart are just as nauseating and oppressive to God is that statue would be to me.

I have lived my life. For example, for the admiration of others. I've given that godlike weight in my life and I've pursued that sometimes even at the at the expense of pursuing God in that idol that statue that false worship is just as nauseating to God as it was, is, is that statue was to me. The bottom line.

The poll is getting to is that all of us alike.

All of us have rejected the truth that is evident in creation and in our consciences about an all glorious all ruling God and we replace that God would created things. Things we could control our own will and gave those things the place and priority in our hearts that only God deserves all of us. For this reason, Paul says God delivered us over to disgraceful passions.

This was the first wave of God's judgment.

I explained that I just gave us what we asked for compared it to.

If the earth were to say to the son. I'm sick and tired of you be in the middle of the solar system, and all day every day I can rotate around you. Now I'm going to be in the center of the solar system and everything is gonna rotate around me with the sun you were looking at the earth they wouldn't have to punish them. A sonata nuclear rate of energy the sun like to say the earth.

I have it your way. The earth is 30,000 times smaller than the sun and would not have the ability to keep all the planets in orbit, and so the solar system would begin to unravel simply because the sun gave to the earth would ask for when the same way. What God did to us in the first wave of judgment. Is he just granted us our wish and we put ourselves instead of him at the center of our lives and our lives in our society began to unravel. I explained you that throughout the rest of the passage in Romans.

When you read it in Greek. You see a lot of gonna tit for tat a lot of parallelism and in and in the passage. For example, verse 23. They exchanged the glory of God for an image so God exchange them over to disgraceful passions and unnatural sexual desires, they dishonored God so God let them dishonor themselves. Verse 28 they did not see fit to acknowledge God so God gave them over to an unfit mind. Paul then begins to do now in this morning to get into today is again begins to give examples of what this looks like in our lives and our families and in our societies when we begin to come unraveled. Verse 26. The are there women exchanged natural sexual relations for natural ones. The men in the same way also left natural relations with women and were inflamed in their lust for one another. Men committed shameless acts with men received in their own persons the appropriate penalty of their error. But this is the longest in the clearest passage in the Bible on homosexuality's go-ahead to acknowledge right up front here II know I know that historically we in the church have not done a great job in talking about this and maybe even in a worse job and caring for those who are going through this, but let's begin by Lisa looking humbly in open mindedly. At what what God's word says about this and then afterwards we'll talk about what that means for those of us who were seeking to follow Jesus, the apostle Paul says that one of the results of displacing God in the center of our hearts was that we developed unnatural sexual patterns. We exchange the truth about God for a lie.

Verse 25. So God exchanged our natural healthy passions for unnatural ones.

Verse 26.

In one sense we shouldn't be surprised that this is where Paul turns first, Paul is not picking on homosexuality is not saying that it is a worse sin than all the other sins. It's just that if God made us in his image, male and female, then it shouldn't surprise us that the effects of our rejection of God in the center of our life would show up in those primary relationships Paul Sykes homosexuality. One scholar says, not because it is a greater sin than any other, but because it is the clearest evidence of a rejection of God's order in creation now in recent years some of try to say that this passage Romans 126 and 27 refers only to certain kinds of homosexual act, promiscuous homosexual acts like prostitution or one night stands or a master forcing a slave to have sex with him or that kind of thing and that Paul was just you just unfamiliar with the with him with a committed, loving same-sex relationship, the kind we see in our society today. And if Paul had been aware of that he most certainly would not have blown them altogether if he saw the friendship and the sacrificial love and the commitment the union that we see it. Same-sex relationship sometimes to David. He certainly would've ever understood that that is a very natural every natural thing, but that is not true, enduring, committed same-sex relationships were most certainly a thing in the Roman world, and Paul most definitely knew about Plutarch, who was a contemporary of Paul's not a Christian. In the first century makes a distinction in his writing, between homosexual sex for her pleasure, which he considered to be unworthy and homosexual practice that was rooted in a committed relationship which Plutarch considered to be beautiful and worthy and one of Plato's works. You wrote you about 300 years before Paul Plato mentions two adult men who were lovers for more than 10 years as a well read it well traveled Roman citizen. Paul would certainly have known about these things. Paul would have known about a very dominant stream within Roman culture, yet Paul does not distinguish between kinds of homosexual acts in Romans one identifies all sexual relationships between men between men and women between women as a departure from the creator's design for human flourishing.

They are unnatural.

He says literally Greek. He says they are against nature. Now, again, it is important to realize that Paul is not just randomly picking on homosexuality here is just citing it as one of the clearest examples of elevating our desires over the creator's design where new situation in which we say is not about what the creator wants is not about the creator's design. It's about what I want. Homosexuality is just one note one example, though, and so Paul goes on to mention the other ways that our idolatry the other ways that are prioritizing of our desires are the creators that design other ways that we see creation unravel to come back to this discussion on homosexuality in a minute.

The first, which is get their artwork their way to the rest will Paul says here verse 28, and because they probably day that is pulled rhetorically building an argument you see in chapter 2 that they is weak. Paul can explain that he's a cheap member. This group, as are all of us.

This is not an us and them like those sinners and us righteous people.

He's like everybody's date is a bagel weed is awesome. Then just one gigantic group we observe redundancy day in Romans one, you can read it is weak because we do not think it worthwhile to acknowledge God.

God delivered us over to a corrupt mine so that they do not do what is right that he begins to begin to list out things we saw sexual disorder that was the first thing verse 26, 27, now we got economic disorder. Their fillable unrighteousness and evil and greed and wickedness you can think of that again is economic disorder. The social disorder.

The full envy and murder and quarrels of deceit and malice their gossips and their slanders again social disorder dissing Facebook right there had been you got spiritual disorder, verse 30, their God haters their arrogant or proud there boastful they are inventors of evil. That's a spiritual disorder and then you got disobedient to parents, senseless, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful you could think of that is family disorder you got sexual disorder economic disorder social disorder spiritual disorder family disorder and that is not even intended to be an exhaustive list. This is a sample will Paul is trying to show you is that our idolatry the elevation of our desires are God's will. The insertion of our self in the center rather than God has affected every single part of our lives. It's what theologians call the doctrine of total depravity. That doesn't mean that we are all as bad as we could be just that our rejection of God at the center of our lives has corrupted every other part of our lives. Paul starts with homosexuality, but he goes on to show how every part of our lives, literally every dimension of our lives is affected by the disorder that comes from putting ourselves in the center instead of God. I was when I was a student in college as part of this thing is extracurricular thing called the Northlands to the legislature were every year. Each college was in the delegation down the rally here where you have a team and you would present bills and you would debate the bills and try to pass them they would put us all up in this one hotel in downtown Raleigh get one hotel filled with hundreds of colleges as you can imagine what that situation was like come first night it was there I went to bed about 230 in the morning which was about two hours before everybody else went to bed and don't have five roommates.

I was full guy in the room so I'm in bed and I'm you that that that moment right before you go to sleep in a split second was just going into REM and in all the sudden the door of my hotel room to bust open on a roommates guy. He is out of breath. Pendleton's face as I gently grab your Bible I come quick as always it now. I just let this got a Christ.

About three weeks before is a brand-new Christian.

I honestly thought somebody was dying and needed to get saved what they done in the cardiac arrest and on the so I jump out of bed like you all had on was a pair shorts so I grab the first thing that I see this jacket just grabbed but it doesn't fit and I grab my Bible and I'm running down the hall after this got peak takes a left into this on this hotel room so I follow him. I go in I do in this room and there is no less than 35 college students that are seated all over the beds and the couches in this hotel room and they're all just sitting there and my friend out of breath me out of breath friends like was the music. The reason I like your who is ill to me says they had a question about homosexuality and I told him that you can answer it now.

This is like every speaker's worst nightmare item that you must have a Mike, is this really happening because I'm showing up literally half naked in front of a group of total strangers to address on the spot. Maybe the toughest question you could possibly ask in a group of college students, so I'm sticking here and wrote down what I'm wearing.

This is purple like a track jacket that you give it edema fit and understanding their you know, just they're just me and a new shirt on and there are certain hourly me and I'm stirring awkwardly back at them and I was like what you do, so I thought. Romans one, Romans 100 says something about about this open up and I will just read the passage of them. Think of what I meant to say and I get to the end of that list and said so we'll think about that and I think one of you got this guy was going to babysit what sounds to me like the Bible say. He says only Bible saying that that homosexuality that the worst sin is like the worst form of corruption and I said well I don't know everything there is to know about this passage but I'm positive that's not what Paul is saying that what you see is a Paul identifies that as one result of a life that is no longer centered on God. But then he goes on to an end to these other things and did you listen to the rest of that list.

And did you identify yourself in almost 95% of those other things I SMS and how many of you are guilty of 95% of the things that are listed in that list go back filament With you will fall back to that list right will will will deliver 26 and 27, if you got your text in front of you just put a check above it.

If you are guilty of it.

There filled unrighteousness, evil, greed always one more than they had wickedness full of envy and jealousy about their friends murder you. So I murder nobody.

Whenever Jesus said that if you hate somebody in your harder for you desire. You delight in their harm and that is the spirit of murder in your guilty of a quarreling deceit and malice their gossips and talk about her friends and.slanderers at the wise sometimes about about people to the gate. Inventors are God haters, you are not not a God hater basin help all defined in Romans one we got all our because we want to be in the centers of the gods are God haters were arrogant proud, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, senseless, untrustworthy, unloving, merciful and just in case you know Paul mistreated through this one, and for fun but disobedient to parents about anyone of them that know everything will time with respectful submission right away all the way media beating nobody, nobody comes out clean. And that list has elastomers and how many are guilty of 95% of that list. What Paul is showing us is that the corruption manifested itself differently in different people.

I might struggle more than you with certain things on that list and certain other things you might struggle with more than me, but my heart is corrupt and my heart is full of disorder and so is yours.

In fact, here's a really important question ask about that list are those things solicit others things the cause of God's judgment or the result of God's judgment. Careful, the answer is both their both the cause and the result of it. The chief send the really wicked sin was rejecting God is the center and the ruler of our life. That's the sin that brought on all the other corruption and that original sin that chiefly wicked sin of rejecting God's role in putting our role in its place. That's the one that all of us have participated in a life equally to. Here's the thing we don't always get to choose which way that corruption affects us and some people the corruption manifested itself is in the your pride or unbridled personal ambition or an out-of-control temper. Maybe it manifest as an inability to control your impulses for food or propensity toward doubt and worry or depression. Those things are all included in that list in Romans one and others. It manifest itself in some form of corrupted sexual desire by the lake. All of us in some way have experience corrupted sexual desire, but the point is that the central sin is the same. We rejected God's rule and substituted our own in its place that manifest in different people differently and we don't get to choose our corruption that let me say something here that I fear might get misunderstood, but I thought it's important enough that even though my get misunderstood.

I will say it anyway. In this sense, you can almost think of homosexuality as an affliction and not just a simple choice because for most gay people. They feel like they didn't choose their desires met. Here's what I've learned after two decades of pastoring almost every person I've encountered in the church at least almost every person who struggles with the same-sex attraction is almost always dealing first and foremost with an unanswered prayer.why did you change this when I asked you to got asked you take to the desires away if you didn't do it, so me say that again especially for you parents if your child one day, says this to you.

This is what you have to understand every Christian I know who struggling with same-sex attraction is dealing first and foremost with the question of why God did not answer their prayer to change them.

Which means that people with same-sex attraction really ought to be first and foremost recipients of our compassion. That is, it makes same-sex behavior any less simple anymore than it would make outburst of temper or envy or materialism less simple. This means we don't always get to choose our weakness or corruption and see. That means that gay and lesbian people are not worse sinners than other people there not a different kind of sinner than the rest of us. They just got affected with a different dimension of the Kursk and that changes how we think about it and how we talk about it. She there are three ways I see is really going wrong with this in the church at large three ways window XI we believe God, and we care about this, we would gotta really care about this, he dies, he is crystal clear in this passage, as well as at least five other passages in the old and New Testament passages like for example 1st Corinthians work honestly could not get any clear, do not be deceived. Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters, nor adulterers, or men who have sex with men, nor thieves, and of the greedy nor drunkards or slanderers or swindlers. Anybody who willfully and obstinately says this is who I am or what I'm going to do.

These people will not inherit the kingdom of God here describing how the fall of excess on couldn't help but notice that this message contain teaching for mature content will finish this message tomorrow. Pastor Jamie points out that sometimes the exchange truth that God relies if you're finding are serious or Romans challenging her heart gripping. I would like to encourage you to get our new Bible study. We can go deeper into the theology and issues discussed in the book of Romans. This brand-new statement will come as a three-part box set throughout the year. The first line including the box to hold them all today as you read through this book and work through the study questions, you'll be reminded that the gospel has always been countercultural, that is, and will send you both the first study, but in the case to hold and display it as an expression of thanks.

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