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Summary: From Acts 17, how we witness to our culture. Who God is.

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Title: The Unknown God Becomes Known

Theme:

Text: Acts 17:17 - 31

Introduction

It has been an historical two weeks. A little over a week ago the church gathered together to show its support for Emmanuel AME church and its 9 victims.

Then this week we hear the ruling of the Supreme Courts on Gay marriage.

What does this mean for our nation? This is just the tip of the iceberg.

What does this mean for the church? We still must stand for Biblical truth.

(Act 17:16) Now while Paul waited for them at Athens, his spirit was provoked within him when he saw that the city was given over to idols.

Provoked “stirred” “irritate” “provoke to anger”

Jesus in the temple.

He felt like he had to do something.

There was estimates up to 30,000 idols in the city.

Idolatry – a distraction from the truth.

(Act 17:17) Therefore he reasoned in the synagogue with the Jews and with the Gentile worshipers, and in the marketplace daily with those who happened to be there.

• Confrontational

• Intellectual

• Testimonial

• Interpersonal

• Invitational

• Serving

Reasoned “disputed” “discuss”. In a way of respect to others.

(Act 17:18) Then certain Epicurean and Stoic philosophers encountered him. And some said, "What does this babbler want to say?" Others said, "He seems to be a proclaimer of foreign gods," because he preached to them Jesus and the resurrection.

Epicureans – believed in the gods but believed that they were distant. Did not believe in the after life. What we have is what we have here so we better live it up.

Stoic – believed the body and soul are separate. We must discipline the body. Self control is the key.

Idle babbler – as one who would pick different philosophies together to build a new religion.

Preached Jesus and the resurrection. This idea of the resurrection was a stumbling block to them.

1 Corinthians 1:23 but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks [2] foolishness,

(Act 17:19) And they took him and brought him to the Areopagus, saying, "May we know what this new doctrine is of which you speak?

Areopagus - ar'-i-os pag'-os

(Act 17:20) For you are bringing some strange things to our ears. Therefore we want to know what these things mean." (Act 17:21) For all the Athenians and the foreigners who were there spent their time in nothing else but either to tell or to hear some new thing.

This is where they went to debate.

(Act 17:22) Then Paul stood in the midst of the Areopagus and said, "Men of Athens, I perceive that in all things you are very religious;

If they got anything right it was the fact that they were religious. KJV - superstitious

1.a belief or notion, not based on reason or knowledge, in or of theominous significance of a particular thing, circumstance, occurrence,proceeding, or the like.

2. a system or collection of such beliefs.

3. a custom or act based on such a belief.

4.irrational fear of what is unknown or mysterious, especially in connection with religion.


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