Summary: Defining proof why God is just in His wrath towards a lost world.
THE WRATH OF GOD
• This a very important portion of Scripture. Not in the top 10 of most popular sermon texts. Not a touchy feely part of Scripture. The prosecuting attorney steps to the front of the Judge and lays out a case against mankind.
• LOST WORLD: Name of a popular movie out the Jurassic Park trilogy. World of dinosaurs, hidden away jungles, island far away from society. The real ‘lost world’ is what you walk into every day. It surrounds your every activity. The defining principles of lostness which are also the reasons for the wrath of God are set forth in our text for today.
• GOD’S COURTROOM: We now enter it. Beginning here and continuing through several chapters God establishes the guilt of mankind. Gentiles and Jews, Pagans and Religious.
• 45 RPM Singles: Popular songs of the day on one side while other side was a throwaway song. To buy one was to get something very good on one side but the flip side you didn’t even want to listen to. In verses 1:17 we have been given the fun stuff about Christianity but starting in verse 18 we get the stuff people don’t want to hear. But it is part of the message: It is the bad news that makes the good news really good.
Parts of town we don’t like to travel in: In KC used to drive into the inner city and preach at the rescue mission each month. Showed up for seminary in 1990. God provided a church 3 months later but in the mean time I wanted to preach somewhere. Called a rescue mission out of the phone book and started a relationship that continued for the next 8 years.
Those faces I would see each Saturday night, the dead sunken eyes, were very different from the ones I would look into the next morning at Church. If I could choose my world it would be the Sunday Morning world but the truth is that the other exists. It is not fun to admit but it is reality. There is a part of us like that: We like the us we dress up each Sunday morning but Paul is going to identify the deeper part of us that has fallen short of God’s glory.
(18) For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness. (19) because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. (20) For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made so that they are without excuse. (21) For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God, or give thanks; but they became futile in their speculations and their foolish heart was darkened. (22) Professing to be wise, they became fools
• Paul here begins to answer some of the tough questions that people like to ask: Why should I go to church when there are hypocrites there? If somebody never hears the name of Jesus how can they be held accountable? What about the heathen in Africa?(little secret, heathen are here, people grow up with very little or no exposure to a healthy concept of God in America).
1) Paul is going to prove that no person will ever be able to stand before God with any defense against God’s judgment.(no OJ’s) PROOF that every body is guilty.
• Did you notice that verse 18 is present tense? We think of wrath as being the Book of Revelation. Some futuristic event. That will be the day of the fullness of God’s wrath
1) (THUMOS-(thermostat) to breath violent, expand our nostrils, our brand: hit walls, scream) God doesn’t kick stars around
2) Here the word is ORGE: Lit. ‘a swelling’ The swelling of God. Wrath is God’s settled response to sin and it is pictured by God swelling. Used of plants when sap increased until sudden blossom or fruit. God’s response to our sin is a swelling, it is a build up with a definite response.
Rom 2:5-6 Because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God. Wrath is not a reaction but an emotion. GOD HATES SIN.
We struggle with dealing with sin in America today. The big word in our society today is TOLERANCE: The only agreed upon sin in America today is to call sin sin. We don’t really call people guilty about anything. People don’t accept guilt upon themselves anymore.
What used to be sinful became a sickness and now is acceptable. Any wrong is now due to environment or my genitics, I didn’t know any better. NOBODY WANTS TO ADMIT PERSONAL GUILT.