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Paul’s MESSAGE AT MARS HILL Acts 17:22-34 7-28-07

Today our thought is to point out that people the world over are not sure Who The True and Living God is. There are people that actually believe that one religion is just as good as another so long as a person is sincere in believing their religion. After all they conclude, there are so many religions in the world that it must not really be all that important, so long as they live a pretty good and decent life.

Well the Apostle Paul didn’t agree with that notion at all. Listen as I read today’s text found in Acts 17:16-34

16Now while Paul waited for them at Athens, [Silas-timothy] his spirit was stirred in him, when he saw the city wholly given to idolatry. 17Therefore disputed he in the synagogue with the Jews,[ discuss, to exhort, reason ] and with the devout [religious] persons, and in the market daily with them that met with him.

18Then certain philosophers [who thought on wise things] of the Epicureans, [followers of a noted philosopher named Epicurus and of the Stoicks,[ whice was another kind of philosophy] encountered him. And some said, What will this babbler say? Other some, He seemeth to be a setter forth of strange gods: because he preached unto them Jesus, and the resurrection.

19And they took him, and brought him unto Areopagus,[ Mars’ hill: , the court of the Areopagites] saying, “May we know what this new doctrine, whereof thou speakest, is? 20For thou bringest certain strange things to our ears: we would know therefore what these things mean.”

21(For all the Athenians and strangers which were there spent their time in nothing else, but either to tell, or to hear some new thing.)

22Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars’ hill, and said, “Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious. 23For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you.

24 “God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; 25Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; 26And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation;

27That they should seek the Lord, if haply [the idea of drawing a conclusion); they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us:

28For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, “For we are also his offspring.”

29Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device.--

30And the times of this ignorance God winked at; didn’t punish] but now commandeth all men every where to repent:

31Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead”

32And when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some mocked: and others said, We will hear thee again of this matter.

33So Paul departed from among them.

34Howbeit certain men clave unto him, and believed: among the which was Dionysius the Areopagite, [a member of the court held on Mars’ Hill:] and a woman named Damaris, and others with them.

We see here that because of Paul having to wait on Silas & Timothy many become believers, God was in this all the way.

Paul stood in the midst of Mars Hill ready to preach. He stood where many of the world’s great philosophers had stood, that had expounded the great thoughts of their philosophies; now Paul was about to proclaim the great truths of God.

The official court sat before him and a large crowd of interested philosophers and poets and citizens surrounded him. All heathens, completely void of any knowledge of the True and Living God.

They were about to hear the most glorious news ever proclaimed to man: and that was God had revealed Himself and made Himself known to man. He had sent His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to earth to save man from sin, death, and the judgment to come.

The first point to Paul’s message to the heathen is that: God was sought by man. Notice the words Paul uses, "You are very superstitious, or very religious."

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