Summary: What difference does it make if I do all the right things but not know the right Person.
Religious But Lost
· Last Sunday AM & PM we studied the wrath of God. We looked at WHY God’s wrath is exercised upon mankind(gentile world)(1:18-22).
1) Man’s rejection of God’s revelation of Himself(Conscience/Creation)
2) Man’s Exchange of giving God’s glory to giving it to other objects of worship.
We looked at WHAT God’s wrath entails: Eventual day of Judgment but even now a present tense ‘giving over’ to three things:
1) Impure hearts – allowing to go in direction so intent on(Little Dog on lease)
2) Degrading behaviors – more in common with animals than God
3) Depraved/reprobate minds – absent of a sense of God
· Today: The Judgment of God
1) Many who heard read Romans chapter 1 might have cheered as they understood that those ‘pagans, heathen, godless’ finally get what they have coming to them. WITHOUT EXCUSE
2) Then beginning with Chapter 2 Paul shocks his readers by saying that others also are ‘without excuse’.
a) Quick to amen that those people who own the bars, every other word is profanity, exchange God for a fishing pole or golf club, reject God in their lives are really going to be in for it and get what they have coming to them. They are obviously lost!!
3) Romans 2 is going to tells us that nobody is so good that they don’t have to be saved. No ins on God. God you are my debtor and owe me eternal life.
a) Might look at the extremes spoken of in Chapter one and say that that identifies a lost person. How they think and what they do.
b) Judgment is not based on how extreme your bad behavior was but it all comes down to one thing that we are going to discuss this morning.
HOWARD CARTER: Searched for the tomb of King Tut and in the 1920’s he found it. He go to the Circofergus and opened the COFFIN, in it he found another Coffin. This one was elaborated with GOLD LEAFING on it. It was opened and a THIRD COFFIN. It was opened and then there was a SOLD GOLD FOURTH COFFIN. It was opened and a GOLD CLOTH on top of the body. Under the cloth was a GOLD MASK. Underneath it all was an old, dry, withered, dead body. Elaborate outward display and find underneath something old, dry, withered and dead spiritual reality.
A person may impress the world around to be very religious and put on a big production when it comes to their spiritual life.
MAN IS A VERY RELIGIOUS CREATURE.
World is filled with religion: Muslums, Buddist, Shinto, Confusision, Mormons, JW, Christian Science, Catholocism, tribal religions…..Christianity is the predominant religion in the United States and many people are born here and begin practicing their religion in Christian circles but never ever have a relationship with Jesus Christ. THEY ARE RELGIOUS BUT LOST. Dry and withered in an environment of gold.
QUESTION THIS MORNING: Do you have a relationship with Jesus Christ or are you just practicing your religion.
It was a surprise one morning at Eastwood Baptist Church when our Sunday School Superintendent walk the aisle to make a decision. The big surprise was that it was a salvation decision. Dennis Brown came forward to say ‘I have been a very religious person all my life but I have realized that I never had a relationship with Jesus Christ’.
Dennis had grown up in church: learned to say the right things, do the right things, pray the right prayers, stand and sit at right time but had never met His Savior until that morning, never had his sins placed on the cross until that morning.
Had learned all the rote of Christianity.
It wasn’t long before we left Immanuel Baptist Church that a young man with a new baby walked the aisle. Chad Ford came to give his life to Jesus Christ. Chad flatly stated, ‘I have been playing a big game’. Chad played it well, well enough to be the interim youth pastor. Chad was a great guy but his sins which seemed to be very few were still on his account until he received Jesus Christ as his personal Savior.
Imagine the shock years ago at 1st Baptist Norman, OK when the pastor, Preacher Hallick, came forward during his own invitation and gave his life to Jesus Christ.
He knew what to say, how to say it, what was expected but he never had a relationship with Jesus Christ until that morning.
· For some of us those three events seem like the craziest things you have ever heard. Three very religious and moral individuals: faithful, serving in the church, and even tithers(Pharisees: perfect church members) and yet they do not know Jesus Christ.
1) Paul is sounding an alarm in chapter 2 that we know enough to pass judgment on others that we should make sure we know that we ourselves have a relationship with Jesus Christ.