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October 14, 2020 8:00 am
Same world is racing headlong into what ever seems to bring satisfaction the world. However, glory is in their shame they flaunt their sensuality, their sexuality, they defined our God-given gender. They move from bed to bed. They abort their inconvenient babies. They race after ambition. They openly pursue pleasure.
It's like the running after Judas who chases 30 sparkling pieces of silver ever pleasure 40 pieces of silver could buy. That's why Stevens calling today's lesson running after Judas in today's lesson were looking at some of the characteristics of people who are running after their own desires. Instead of running after Jesus Christ you probably know people like that in this lesson will help you as you seek to influence them for Christ. This lesson also serves as a warning for us to remain faithful. Here's Stephen Davey with today's Bible lesson if you take your New Testament and return to Paul's letter to the Philippians. Notice how Paul describes in his opening statement the world. Look at verse 18. This is where we left off last words that for many walk, there is again for many walk, of whom I often told you, and now tell you even weeping. They are enemies of the cross of Christ.
There are two statements in that text that might surprise you first that Paul would call unbelievers enemies of the cross.
If you went out on the street and you ask people hey are you an enemy of God.
They would say no I'm not an enemy of God. I and I'm certainly not one of his nor he is one of my not that they would say I don't I don't feel like I'm an enemy of God. I've never thought about it like that, but I certainly feel that way. What you talking about an enemy of God. The truth is we are no more capable of judging her own relationship with God apart from his word and what his word reveals any more than a patient who sits before a doctor who says the results of the tests of command and you now have an operable cancer and that patient is I don't feel like I do. I feel fine. I don't feel like I got cancer when you talking about to reject the cross of Christ is more than rejecting a wooden symbol of death it is to reject the priceless gift of the life and bloodshed of God's own son. It is to defy the purpose of the creator. It is to ignore the terms of peace and reconciliation between God and man is to reject the gospel and to reject the gospel means you become an opponent of Christ, whether you feel it or not. James writes in his in his letter.
Do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God. Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. James chapter 4 verse four. It doesn't matter who you are, doesn't matter what your resume says about you in a matter what you think about yourself and what other people say about you as long as you reject the gospel you are. Listen to this horrifying thought.
You are in a state of enmity.
You are the enemy of God. This is the present status of an unbelieving world. Paul writes they are enemies of the cross of Christ.
The second statement that might surprise you with the Paul writes here with great emotion and he says this I I now tell you even weeping as Paul will begin to describe the unbeliever that you need to see him with tears trickling down his cheeks when other Paul wept. Evidently stalwart courageous man and yet very very tender and emotional.
He wept as he warned the Ephesian elders in the flock of coming walls. Teachers accepted 20 he wept over the influence of those false teachers. Romans nine he wept as he expressed his deep concern for the wayward church in Corinth second Cricket chapter 2, but here in Philippians chapter 3. This is the only place in the New Testament where Paul speaks of crying in the present tense and I say that so that when you read what he has to say about the world you need to see these lines spotted. You need to see the ink running a bit as it mixes with the tears of the apostle Paul is worthy of imitation in so many respects and beloved. He is worthy of imitating. In this respect as well. Paul wept over unbelievers like Jesus Christ, wept over unbelieving Jerusalem. Luke 1941 there. There's absolutely no hint here of Paul no thinking or feeling well, you know those unbelievers are going out.
I have read a and didn't they deserve it. The Christian should entertain that kind of spirit toward the lost effect.
The more you know about the coming judgment in all its horror revealed in Scripture. The more you are moved to compassion and urgency in prayer and outreach transfers, and the famous pastor in the 1800s road, if sinners are going to be damned, at least let them lead in the hell over our dead body. If they are to perish, let them perish with our arms wrapped around their knees begging them to this day.
If hell is to be filled or let no one go there on Friday for an unworn. I remember as a boy even in the my middle school and high school years reading those little booklets my father used to get sailors on the streets of Norfolk, Virginia, as they would pour out of the base there.
Norfolk authorship self duty and come downtown Norfolk in those old days to revel.
I can still remember though it's been 50 years prostitutes standing in the open doorways of their partners calling out to these men. I can still see some of those drunken sailors going into the alley right next to the servicing center and throwing up in one of those little booklets. I remember the artist showing a broad highway packed with people walking on it and you could see ahead with the artist showing the highway. Suddenly anything is a precipice and people simply plunging over it and in the flames of hell that marked me first. I didn't want to be one of second I wanted to warn people that was coming when we see people walking through life self-destructing. When we watch our world running like Judas toward their own ambition in life. It should provoking us great pity and passion and compassion to do everything we can to warn them and rescue them by the gospel and the grace and providence of God, and that I want you to know this paragraph is worked all over me. I spent a lot more time in the morning spent together. Do I wait for my world. And do you there are tears streaming down his face and Paul now begins after telling us that here's the world and is going to describe the world for different ways and I'll outline it for you. Number one, he's is first or condemnation is settled. Their condemnation is settled.
Verse 19 he begins his description whose end is destruction.
This is their end.
Paul is playing on words here in the original language. Earlier, he used the form of the same word to refer in fact, this translated perfection or completion or maturity.
We talked about the principle that Paul is saying I'm not perfect and I will be in Christ. One day, but I am being perfected. I am evidencing these marks of maturity. This is the end toward which I'm working now.
Paul uses that same word here to refer to the unbeliever and is not perfection there and is destruction.
Other passages refer to it often as death effect. The word death. Thanatos doesn't mean to cease to exist, it means to be separated at death material part of you is separated from the immaterial part of you.against the Hades is an unbeliever waiting for the judgment to come or to the right presence of God in the father's house. So when you die, the shell of your physical body is separated from whom you truly are in fact on your your body dies your soul is just beginning to see and sense its eternal destination.
The Bible actually talks about two deaths of physical death and a second death effect according to how Scripture explains it. If you are only born once that is physically you are going to experience two deaths to separations one a separation between the shell of your body and your immaterial part and secondly a spiritual death that lasts forever, which is separation from God exactly how that the apostle John speaks of it. In Revelation 2014 where he writes, and this is the second death, the lake of fire. So the second death is not a cessation of life to exist. It is eternal separation from God. I want to quickly add this if you have been born twice, once physically and then born again by faith in Jesus Christ. If you have been born twice you'll only die once physically, you will not face the second death of eternal separation from God's only, summarize it this way. If you have been born only once you die twice. If you have been born twice you die once, but then if the rapture occurs this afternoon. None of us die. We go immediately like Ian again. Elijah transported upward to meet the Lord in the air. First Thessalonians 417. That's another sermon or two or seven or 10 we can get down there okay alarm on the subject and I wanted to address it because of the tax. I get asked this question, by the way, probably more than any other question is how forever one of the verses that the key proof text for those I don't believe it's forever is where Jesus is preaching and in Matthew at least once records and he says this to his audience. Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul. You must fear him who is able to destroy both body and soul in hell. Matthew 1028 now that sounds like both the body and the soul of unbelievers eventually cease to exist. God is going to destroy both.
However, the word used by Jesus for destroy is significant is a word that simply means to deliver up if I Jesus uses the word often and in his in his messages and it's never meant to pass out of existence he means it to point to the fact that you will be delivered up to Missouri. So Jesus is effectively saying you'd better fear him who is able to deliver both your body and soul in hell.
This is this is the terrifying future existence of the unbeliever without Christ and is described throughout the New Testament as eternal hopelessness or not only wasted life but everlasting torment or irredeemable lostness or never ending darkness or eternal despair or banishment from the presence of God forever and Paul is so overwhelmed by the gravity of such an eternal, unremitting, never ending Senate. But Dante described well in his medieval poem where he imagined written above the gates of hell words abandon all hope, ye who enter here to the question is not does a person cease to exist.
The question is where will you exist forever is the question and that question posed to an unbelieving world brought tears down the face of pull apart from Jesus Christ or condemnation is settled. Secondly, he goes further, their cravings are sensual, their cravings are sensual. He writes further in verse 19 is God is there appetite is God is there appetite the word appetite translates clearly, which refers to the: or the abdomen in a particular stomach and Paul uses it, and others, often metaphorically, to refer to the unrestrained physical forbidden sensual desires out about its one author wrote the poem is effectively saying that the unbeliever lives with no higher authority than the dictates of their body, their body governs everything how they feel what they want what they pursue what they love that dictates everything.
By the way, would you notice that Paul doesn't specifically point out anyone appetite he led and elaborated as refer specifically to fornication or drug addiction or gluttony or gossip. The unbridled use of the tongue doesn't really matter to his point.
The point Paul is making JA. Modular rights perceptively. Is that whatever the appetite is.
It has Lordship over them and they worship it, that's true, isn't it anything someone is pursuing in defiance of God is there God is it really that serious and what's wrong with the desire someone asked me how can it be wrong to quote a famous song from a generation ago, when it feels so right and what a person desire really be a warning that that they are to pursue it, but that it is drawing them further away from God, ultimately bringing judgment and death stay for our wrote in his book standing tall in a family taking shelter in the basement of their home. Severe storm was passing through the news reports that tornadoes have been cited in the weighted and in the basement until storm passed by them and after it was gone. The family went upstairs and the father opened the front door look outside all the damage and downed power line was in the street right in front of their home and it was spraying a shower of sparks that it just moved back and forth for the father realize what was happening his five-year-old daughter run near the edge of the lawn heading for that sparkling water in the street and and he yelled Laure stop. Lori kept going. Laure stop right now. You know Lori kept running for that enticing sparkler stop. Lori screamed as he jumped off the porch and ran toward her. Lori reached it first grabbed and was instantly killed to her little minded sparkled. It looked entertaining.
It looked worthy of holding it didn't look deadly. It looked like something you would want to experience the world is racing after the sparkling gods of their own satisfaction and they will discover apart from Christ too late that they had chosen on the satisfying deadly sparkling God. In the meantime of wasted their lives, as Paul considers the self-destructing empty lives of the unbeliever. He weeps as he writes effectively.
There condemnation is settled.
Cravings are sensual. Thirdly, their commendations are shameful. Paul writes in verse 19 whose end is destruction is God is there appetite and whose glory is there shame what is he mean Paul is saying without phrase that the world finds its greatest glory in that which is shameful. You don't really hear that language much anymore. Do you that something is shameful what you hear as well the somebody want to do it not it's shameful or shame on you in a war were really down on shame as a culture, and Paul says that they then glory. They exalt that which ought to bring them shame. Shame is actually a wonderful God-given gift when you find yourself blushing when you find yourself thinking I probably shouldn't do that or say that our think that that's a gift from the Lord to say it.
Shame all the world. However, glory is in their shame they flaunt their sensuality, their sexuality, they defined our God-given gender. They move from bed. The bed they abort their inconvenient babies. They race after ambition. They openly pursue a pleasure whatever it is that brings them pleasure. It's like the running after Judas who chases 30 sparkling pieces of silver place they exalt they think glory in practices and habits and desires of which should bring them shame, but none really stop there because of what he says Paul is actually saying they arrive at the most extreme form of wickedness not only proud of their worst perversions. They applaud the same in others they exulted to others. Of course, takes you back to Isaiah the prophet who recorded of his own generation by the way, this is new to our generation. Mrs. generation of man. This is the heart of man apart from the gospel. Isaiah recorded of his generation. They call evil good and good evil. They exchange darkness for light and light for darkness the exchange bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter is an evil God is in darkness.
It slides it isn't better taste its sweet Paul describes this final step of defiance and unbelief. Zero to the Roman church over the world intuitively knows the ordinances of God that those who practice such things and is already listed in the chapter. They are worthy of death that is eternal separation from God. They not only do the same but also give hearty approval of those who practice them there cheering one another on on that broadcast that's leading to the precipice and the world would respond to the gospel. This can be out of bounds. I am going to look at how many people are doing it. This is commendable, don't be on the wrong side of history.
GK Chesterton famously wrote a century ago.
Fallacies do not cease to be fallacies because they become fashion there still tragic diversions from the truth. There still shameful. There still unwholesome. There still self-destructing practices that heap one penalty upon another on poor lost people who are driven then to justify their shame. Commendations are shameful without Paul delivers the fourth descriptive phrase there captivation's are shortsighted of this one more in verse 19.
They set their minds on earthly things. They are earthbound.
Paul says they are dwellers. There are oriented, there are lovers, they are earth worshipers. How tragically short sighted is that I see Paul with tears streaming down his cheeks, effectively informing the church in Philippi that for these unbelievers. Earth will effectively be the closest thing ever get to heaven with his life and breath in your lungs are still times Christ is the only hope the gospel of faith in Christ alone is your only salvation. My question to you is when you give birth for him before it's too late for those of you who believe. I want you to think of a face or a name person you know they need Christ and you're in their life in some way shape or form. Ask God to give you a spirit of the apostle Paul, Christ himself asked him to give you a burden for them, a burden can wear you down.
Ask for that lost. Let's commit to praying that God will give us for those who need to hear the truth of the gospel and friend. Stephen was talking today.
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