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November 25, 2020 7:00 am
Warning to sinners about their soon who's the Bible referring to in those passages this morning happens to be for everyone who denies the glory of a creator God. Seven. Those who place their faith in false religion verse eight. Those who worship someone other than the living Lord Jesus Christ. Verse 12 this morning isn't just for all the really bad people in the world's warning is for the person sitting in your seat done really bad things average generally nice person. Have you ever thought that way if you ever read a warning about a certain sin in your mind. Went to all kinds of people, but you didn't think about yourself. That kind of thinking that others are sinners, but your generally good is dangerous. The warnings God gives us in Scripture are for everyone who does not respond to the gospel organist see one of those warnings today.
This is wisdom for the hard with Stephen Devi here. Stephen right now within the emerging church which is changing its shape even as we speak. The consultant concludes yes different times do require different messages I've ever taken the time to read messages by some of the great 19th century preachers. If you have you will probably have noted the men of that era addressed quite a different crowd than we do today so they address them in a very different manner and because of those differences, I disagree with those who say that such messages are appropriate now for our time, which of course would rule out Jonathan Edwards and sinners in the hands of an angry God. He will write you see people in our culture are broken and deeply wounded.
They need desperately to be healed and put back together. Jobs and raises the point that evidently people at Edwards community in 1734, one broken and in need of being put together the consultant concludes yes different times do require different messages. Unfortunately, that kind of consulting is one the day in the evangelical church primarily in our country and most assuredly in our generation now host of pastors and seminary professors to consider the idea of preaching on the subject of accountability before God, the God of wrath and judgment. Any mention certainly of hell fire and brimstone in the coming wrath of God to sorta be practical.
Staying upon the reputation of Christianity. So one pastor advertises church I quote there is no fire and brimstone here.
No Bible thumping just practical messages is learning on a Santa hell isn't practical as if learning how to avoid the wrath of God is something really good to know that might come in handy. One day the pastor said services in our church. You don't hear people threatened with hell are referred to as sinners.
The goal is to make them feel welcome. We don't want to drive people away. Can you imagine a medical doctor. Applying that approach to his patients. He will never see God for the medication will never refer to any diseases they have, that would be too personal. Certainly never recommend surgery that would be way too invasive. He'll never in fact tell them they're sick. Even if they're terminally ill is goal is to simply have them visit his practice, and feel welcome. He doesn't want to drive anybody away. What kind of doctor is that in a word, unemployed. How many preachers should be one off the road. No wonder nominal Christians and even unbelievers in our generation are leaving church feeling good about having been in service writers.
The self-esteem is safely intact. Their minds and hearts of been sparked ensued with soundbite theology, Christian principles and a few practical pointers dealing with everything from themselves to their kids and their careers.
But as the word of God penetrated their comfort zone and veneer of self-delusion and self satisfaction. So here's the challenge.
If the goal of the gospel is to make people comfortable then were obviously going to have to redefine the gospel right because the gospel is full of uncomfortable truths. So is it any wonder, then, in our generation did anything of the gospel that is personal and confrontive or distasteful as being peeled away to read.
Not too long ago. The results of one survey taken among students who are attending evangelical seminary. Now these are people who are expecting going to the ministry and supposedly preach the Bible and teach it revealed, however, that 46% of them nearly half of the students question felt preaching about how was quote in poor taste" somewhere along the line of professors failed to inform them that Jesus Christ had more to say about hell that all of the profits and all of the apostles combined, which means he often spoke then in poor taste. You think he wanted people to know the uncomfortable truth of coming judgment.
Listen my friend the gospel that downplays the wrath of God doesn't help people it hurts them and will hurt them for a very very long time and it is another gospel become like a man taking a bullet was present about North Little Rock from the Niagara Falls and as they get swept in the Kearney tells him to worry about and whatever you do not listen to that that rumbling noise you hear. Up ahead, don't worry, no need to feel uncomfortable is Jesus Christ. He is really not concerned with our comfort is concerned with the conformity of our lives to the objective truths of Scripture.
He is not concerned. Comfortable, we will feel in our own personal shroud is interested in personal radical conversion, the death and life of Jesus Christ was was, not to save us from boredom or poverty or a bad job or a bad back, or low self-esteem. He came to redeem us from spiritual slavery to sin and save us from everlasting judgment. So the apostle Paul right it is like the wages of sin is what death that is the paycheck for sinners. If you got your gonna die, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. The gospel message comprising both elements, but the bad news and the good news is being preached around the globe without apology without any advertising schedule without any local sponsors or any sold ticket is being delivered by three unique messenger we discovered them there. Three angels and their message in the future is as important for us today as it will be then let's go back to Revelation 14 were we uncover the truth of these angels and their messages, their manuscripts are provided there in chapter 14 Revelation. The first angel is circling the globe you are with us. Our last discussion, preaching the gospel, highlighting creationism, in fact, he declares an inverse seven that we ought to fear God and give him glory. Why, because the hour of his judgment is comic was there in the tribulation and it is indeed in a unique way, so do what worship him. Verse seven of chapter 14.
Worship him who made heaven and the earth and the sea and the springs of water that always acknowledge creator God. The gospel of creationism. The second angel preaches the consummation of God's reign over the kingdoms of the world. In fact, he talks verse eight about the second angel speaking the news that Babylon the great is fallen, that's a that's a phrase perhaps of all of the kingdoms at the height of their power, who would seek to wrestle away the glory of God in the worship of God and he says effectively. They have fallen like a house of cards that words can produce the greatest power on the planet will fall in this coming day, then the third angel appears he would have never been invited by the way into the average church in America.
Why because he delivers a gospel of condemnation, which he describes in visit details. He describes the horrors of hell known our last study we begin to expound on the clear meaning of this angels final message and by the way, you discover in this the grace of God that God is sending an angel who will circle the globe, as is the time of tribulation is nearing an end, delivering the people one more opportunity to hear the gospel and believe those millions, perhaps billions who are on the verge of receiving the mark of the Christ on the right hand therefore had to noting that they will worship a false Messiah. So he sends his angel delivering the warning of of the terror in the horror of the wrath of God in this coming place called hell. Now the immediate context is that these in the tribulation who are being warned not to take the mark of the beast to follow after Christ. The fuller picture given to us in the rest of the book of Revelation points to effectively culminates in chapter 20 for those who disregard the gospel and face this coming hell. So this third angel effectively takes the lid off of hell. He describes it for us. It's no longer hidden.
It is in the recesses of dusty box and the former evangelical church the will no longer deliver the news. Why because we want everybody to feel welcome and we don't want to drive anybody away. Listen this one angelic message before we dive in me tell you it is created more heartburn in the world of religion than just about any other text of Scripture for religious worlds all over the map from Seventh-day Adventists, Mormons, Roman Catholics, liberal Baptists, and all the other Protestants. The emergent church leaders and anybody that doesn't believe in a conscious eternal place of torment you have to do something with this text in Revelation 14 there going to have to redefine the truth here to dilute it maybe don't come up with an escape hatch. So after certain amount of time you can get out and be free. Or maybe we'll just disregarded or choose to disbelieve it me tell you in this opening comment that this angel delivers the unpopular truth of the wrath of God. We've already learned her last session together wrath of God is personal all the personal pronouns getting verse nine. If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives a mark on his forehead or on his hand.
He will also drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is mixed in full strength of the cup of his anger.
So we also learned that is not only personal but terrible. This is unmixed wrath. This is straight anger.
This is straight fearing this is 100% proof fury of wrath's personal, it is terrible in this room this morning.
By the way is is to the entire human race this this warning of a coming hell. It is not is not just for Hitler and Mussolini.
People look better new or wherever you're putting your mate often make those Michigan State fans. Everyone put in that list. Okay, those are all EMs I could think now that's the startling thing about this angelic message this morning come to mass murderers and serial rapists and dictators and tyrants. Most people would say yeah I got.
We will displace free to be a place for Hitler and is not in the same place where I'm going to be so. We believe that he's gotta be put somewhere know this warning happens to be for everyone who denies the glory of a creator God. Verse seven.
Those who place their faith in false religion verse eight, those who worship someone other than the living Lord Jesus Christ. Verse 12 this morning is just for all the really bad people in the world's warning is for the person sitting in your seat's warning is for people who stand behind wooden things: pulpits, this is then where religion goes in the hyperdrive. This can't be.
This can't be true to go along with the judgment of God thing we had to come up with something a lot more palatable than fire and brimstone for for non-Christians me how barbaric is that it isn't appealing to the masses is an politically correct that it spiritually or religiously graded as drive people away might drive some to the cross of Christ. Maybe you today will run to the one who bore the wrath of God on the cross for use of the by faith in him alone, your delivered from the wrath to come. And if you are, you will be delivered from wrath and fury that is personal, it is terrible. The third point that I would use it outlining this angels message is that the wrath of God is not only personal and terrible. It is painful. Verse 10 and noticed the middle part and he will be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb that this is sort of a side note here you notice that the devil is not managing hell he is one of the occupants in the future. Demons are not terrorizing people and I ran around sticking people, whether with her pitchforks.
They are incarcerated. Now how is primarily created for the devil and his angels. Those that that that rose in that potential coup d'état in Matthew 2541 were told it's created just for them but they're not running the place you learn here that in this descriptive phrase that was under the, the omnipotent, omniscient God will.
I am in host of heaven there managing it under his control makes it even all the more terrifying. I noticed the descriptive phrase it informs us of health torment. The angel described it as a place of fire and brimstone. The word fire poor. The word brimstone you could translate sulfur fire is the word occur together six times in the book of Revelation. Four times they referred to the lake of fire and brimstone or sulfur that is the final destination of unbelievers in this phrase fire and brimstone.
If you've been in the word longer know the Lord long it will take you back in your mind.
Genesis 1924 were the Lord rained down fire and sulfur, or fire and brimstone upon Sodom and Gomorrah psalmist David said that upon the wicked, God would rain down coals of fire and brimstone and burning wind will be the portion of their cup some 11 verse six the prophet said that the vindicating condemning raffle judging brass of the Lord is a stream of burning sulfur. Isaiah 30 verse 33.
Remember your chemistry class sulfur is that yellowish element that burns with a blue flame all the while admitting a noxious sulfur dioxide gas sulfur and in fire brimstone and fire are found to seek and get an image in your mind in volcanic region such as Sicily and Iceland and places in Japan. I remember being flown in a helicopter over it dormant volcano just outside of Kagoshima, Japan, and we actually flew over the mouth of it and just hovered there, rather spectacular, but somewhat unnerving in that the target must've noticed because he told me. Now don't worry the volcano has erupted in about 98 years was very reassuring to me and I said let's just fly on you know move on and imagine. Imagine being brought the final judgment were told in Revelation 20 that all the condemned of humanity will be thrown into this permanent lake described here. Why not fire and brimstone. Imagine being given an immortal body that will survive this torment, yet suffering. It is well thought of molten rock, poisonous minerals and gases.
The pain of fire. The endless existence of suffering and torment to cause one to do what to repent and follow after Christ. When you're given the news as a warning. That's why the angel is being sent by God in his grace all around the globe to warn them.
Don't follow the false Messiah danger. Neither the Lamb is all okay.
I hear the description. I will follow Christ is angels telling them effectively delivering the message to you that this place is a place that you'd like to at all costs. The question is will you is no need to risk. There's no need to speak with bravado. There's no need to shrug it off is the truth of Scripture and I hear people tell me I want to be in hello my friend you know world was in a party down there. They haven't studied the record of Scripture as the angel takes the little felon shows you inside the bravado of a man like like Paul Adair, an oilfield firefighter was made famous in 1968 by a movie that were John Wayne played him movie called health fighters. An actual man, an actual firefighter after the first Gulf War. In fact read Adair led the efforts to The Kuwaiti oil wells that were set ablaze by the defeated Army pressure, never seeing some pictures that he jumped in 1991 that it would be no different.
After he died being after fighting the slaves. He said I could I'd made a deal with the devil to let me live in an air-conditioned place when I go down there so I don't put all the fires out everybody laughs their died at age 89, the devil, he may have tragically discovered by now is a liar.
Besides the devil doesn't control the temperature or its punishments. They are controlled by a God who will demonstrate his wrath forever against all unbelief, it will be sinners not in the hands of a failed devil sinners in the hands of an angry God. The wrath of God will be personal to all who suffer it will be terrible on diluted anger the wrath of God will be painful, fire and sulfur. There's more to this angels warning it and have our attention. You don't have it now. Perhaps he goes on to say in verse 11 that the wrath of God is eternal that phrase and the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever. They have no rest day and night, those who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name occurs, the immediate context is those who choose to follow after this religion rather than Jesus Christ. Broader context is those, of course, who deny him. One day Hades will be poured into an everlasting lake of fire. There are those that would say that the wrath of God is not eternal, and there are more and more in our generation or more men now filling the pulpits of churches in our country today who are denying this doctrine that up until about the early 1800s was universally believed by those who claim to know Christ and the Scriptures. In the last hundred and 80 years at 200 years. It's amazing to see is JI Packer universalism that the idea that that hell is not eternal for people in conscious torment. He said it has quietly slipped within the evangelical church and I I am.
I don't hesitate to say names at times that I really do this Because I think it would be too embarrassing to be recorded and played on the radio, the name of men who abandoned the eternal truths of hell and I have to contend with Christ said in Matthew's gospel that does who are condemned will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous will go into eternal life. You might write this reference down because you have people asking about the neutrality of health. Matthew 25 verse 46, the condemned will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous will go into eternal life. In that text, the same construct.
The same vocabulary you have a parallel between eternal life in one verse, and eternal punishment, clearly stating that both are without, you can't believe the one that last forever. You don't believe the other unless forever and how they want to believe in an everlasting just about everybody I talked in other words, in the torment of the lost in the hell will last as long as the blessedness of the saved, the redeemed in heaven. No, let me ask and answer quickly three questions related to this doctrine of eternal conscious punishment. First, are these flame fire and brimstone. Revelation 14 Luke 16 the place of flame Isaiah 66.
The fire that will are those flames literal flames literal. This is really fire what you you have a choice.
You can either hold the solo script Torah with the Scriptures answer the question for you, or scramble as religions do for another explanation. Let me give a further answer, beyond what we've Artie heard from the lips of Christ in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke and from the pen of Isaiah. Another insight is provided in the parable when Jesus Christ preached this parable of the wheat, referring to the believers and the tears were the weeds referring to the unbelievers. It's interesting that as he came back later to explain to his disciples. Each element was given a figurative meaning except fire as hard as it might be for us to hell is real and Bible believing Christians are often mocked for holding to such beliefs, but it's true and we need to believe it and we need to teach it.
People need to understand what they will face if they don't respond to the gospel, we want you to understand God's word clearly for your own benefit and also so that you can better help others.
You're listening to wisdom for the hearts with our daily Bible teacher Stephen Devi. Stephen is the pastor teacher of a church in Cary, North Carolina. You can learn more about Steven and our ministry by visiting us firstname.lastname@example.org.
We tried our best to fill that site with biblical resources to help you grow in your faith look around and see what's there were always encouraged to hear from listeners. I want to thank Jeff for writing and to share this.
I want you to know that God has used your teaching to help me so much in the past several months. I listen to at least one of your messages almost every day God is use the sermons in my life to help me in more ways than I can explain.
May God continue to use wisdom for the heart to make an impact in our world today for the cause of Christ.
Thanks again Jeff. It was encouraging to hear from you if you'd like to send Stephen a note you can do that from our website. Wisdom online.org you can also address your card or letter to wisdom for the hearts.
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