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Confessing Christ in an Antichristian Culture
“When A People Abandon God” # 1 Romans 1:16-32

Date:April 24, 2022
Author: Wayne J. Edwards

Introduction:

Within the last generation, America has regressed from a God-fearing nation to a God-hating nation, from primarily a Christian nation to a post-Christian nation, and now to an Antichristian nation.  Today’s neo-paganism is “wokeism,” a religion that aims to reconstruct western culture with a new set of values, including the foundation for the Christian Faith. Every concept of the Christian Faith is being redefined under the view of “experiential feelings” rather than “absolute truth” and “divine revelation.”

We will explain this further in our new sermon series – “Confessing Christ in an Antichristian Culture” – This sermon is entitled: “When A People Abandon God”

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Old Testament reading – Psalm 78:1-8 – New Testament Reading – 1 John 2:15-29

“When A People Abandon God”

Romans 1:16-32

Wayne J. Edwards, Pastor

 

   The Apostle Paul’s passionate letter to the Christians in Rome was about the power of the gospel, God’s plan for the redemption for lost man.

  • In the first 17-verses, Paul drew their attention to the power of God’s love, grace, and mercy, in imputing the very righteousness of Christ to those who heard and heeded the gospel.
  • In the next 14-verses, Paul drew their attention to the power of God’s wrath, which will be poured out on those who rejected His gospel as the only means whereby they can be saved.

 

   God has called us to confess our faith in Jesus Christ as our Savior even in what is now becoming a very antichrist culture.

  • This will require a complete change in our philosophy of life – from tolerance and progressiveness to intolerance and protectiveness, especially regarding those who have any level of influence and authority over our children, for their temporal future and eternal security hangs in the balance.

   From Romans 1:18-3:20, the Apostle Paul presented proof after proof, and scripture upon scripture, to demonstrate that no man has the inherent righteousness to stand before a Holy God.

  • The wages of sin God imposed upon Adam and Eve are upon us all, for we all have sinned and continue to fall short of the glory for which God created us.
  • At the Great White Throne Judgment, every nation will be brought before the bar of God’s judgment.
  • Even though God will judge each nation according to the light of truth to which they were exposed, the verdict will be the same, and the punishment will be the same. Why?
  • There was a time when the people of the pagan nations knew more about God than many of the Jews in Paul’s day, but their fathers and grandfathers failed to hand that truth down to their children and their grandchildren.
  • What they knew about God made them guilty of their sins.
  • But rather than confess and repent of those sins, they rejected the One True God and replaced Him with a god of their own making, one more tolerant of their sin.
  • Such suppression of God’s Word continued from one generation to the next until the true knowledge of God was entirely lost.

 

Within the last generation, America has gone from a God-fearing nation to a God-hating nation, from primarily a Christian nation to a post-Christian nation, and now to an Antichristian nation.

  • Monotheism – the general acceptance of the one, true God of the Bible.
  • Atheism – the God is dead movement began in the early 70s at Emory University in Atlanta, GA,
  • Pantheism – God and the universe are equivalent; God is a part of everything; therefore, there are multiple gods.
  • Today’s neo-paganism is “wokeism,” a religion that aims to reconstruct western culture with a new set of values, including the foundation for the Christian Faith. Every concept of the Christian Faith is being redefined under the view of “experiential feelings” rather than “absolute truth” and “divine revelation.”

  1. The Revelation of God’s Truth – Vs. 19-20 – “What may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse.”

  • God made Himself known to every person on earth through:
  • Natural Revelation – if there is a creation, there must be a Creator. If there is a design, there must be a Designer.
  • Divine Revelation – the Holy Scriptures and His audible word spoken through the prophets, priests, and other rulers.

 

  1. The Suppression of God’s Truth – Vs. 18 – “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in

  • In Hebrews 6:4-6, the writer describes those who hear the gospel, receive the gospel, and who are so enlightened by the gospel that they experience the work of the Holy Spirit in their lives, but then they suppress that truth, turn away from it, and return to worship their former gods.
  • The application of that verse is very clear: If a person or a nation of people deliberately turn away from the plan of salvation God has provided, they should not expect to find salvation in any other way, for there is no other way to be saved.
  • So, who is suppressing the truth of God’s Word? False believers – those who heard the Word, received the Word, believed the Word, and for a time lived according to the Word. But, when the cost of discipleship became too much, they allowed the spirit of rebellion to take root in their heart, and they no longer wanted to hear the Word of God.
  • The writer of Hebrews said it was “impossible” for God to revive that heart again, not because HE prohibits it, but because they do not want to repent.
  • Every time we hear the Word of God, and the Holy Spirit convicts us of our sins, and we fail to confess it, and repent of it, we are suppressing the truth we have told others that we believe.
  1. The Rejection of God’s Truth – Vs. 21 – “Although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.”

  • Instead of glorifying God as God, those who suppress the truth redefine God as a lesser god, one who is more tolerant of their sin.
  • Instead of giving thanks to God for every blessing of life, those who suppress the truth can never be satisfied with their lives.
  • Paul said there were two consequences for the rejection of God’s truth:
    • Spiritual darkness – they can no longer discern spiritual things.
    • Mental blindness – they can no longer find the answers to life’s questions.
  1. The Replacement of God’s Truth – Vs. 23 – “They changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man, and birds and four-footed animals, and creeping things.”

  • Notice they have not rid themselves of the fact of God’s existence; they have just brought Him down to their level.
  • When a society becomes filled with all kinds of false religions, it is at the very bottom of the downward spiral – i.e., this is the final stage of society.
  1. The Results of man’s rejection – “God gave them up.”

  • Verse 24 – “To uncleanness”sexual activity of any kind outside the bonds of marriage.
  • Verse 26 – “To vile passions” – sexual activity of any kind that is contrary to the natural use of the male and female body.
  • Verse 28 – “To a debased mind – any kind of behavior that is unbecoming of a true child of God. If such behavior is not corrected, it will lead to total depravity.