Summary: Paul and his companions started a riot because people were coming to Christ and ruining business for the sex trade.
What A Riot! Christianity disrupts the world Acts 19:21-41
"These men who have turned the world upside down…” Acts 17:6
Paul and his companions were turning the world upside down and in the process upset some people who are making money selling sex as religion.
Our world is full of sin – we need a spiritual riot!
1. New Testament Christians lived in a hostile and ungodly world, but were willing to stand for the truth even at great personal risk.
2. The business owners of Ephesus made a lot of money selling sex disguised as religion.
3. People were upset not because they truly cared about religion, but because they worshipped money and sex.
Christianity causes spiritual riots because:
I. We have a better message than the world 19:26
1. Artemis is in ruins, Jesus is still saving people.
2. When people really come to Christ, they really change.
3. What would happen if people who got saved stopped supporting businesses that sell immorality?
II. Greed does not save anyone. 19:25
1. An Ironic Twist: Worshipping at the Altar of Sex without Consequences.
2. We are Not That Innocent: We crave peace and tranquility more than purity and holiness.
3. There is no such thing as “safe sex.”
4. Why don’t Christians experience more opposition from the world in the U.S.? Perhaps we are just going with the flow.
5. Modesty is a virtue. We remember verses about adultery and homosexuality, but conveniently forget verses about modesty.
6. Why don’t we ask God what He thinks? Are we afraid of the truth?
7. “That’s too legalistic. What is on the inside that matters.”
AG Fundamental Truth 5: The Evidences of Salvation: The inward evidence of salvation is the direct witness of the Spirit (Romans 8:16 ). The outward evidence to all men is a life of righteousness and true holiness (To be saved inwardly with no outward sign is not salvation at all)
Islam spreading faster than Christianity: Do they have a better message? Do they have more guns and terrorists? Or maybe they are just having more kids and teaching their children to live out the Muslim faith. We are in trouble! We need a spiritual riot.
Is there a solution? We cannot legalize purity, but we can care about the children discarded by a society the worships sex but curses the blessing.
Ministry to Children MUST be a priority to everyone.
III. Everyone is not doing it 19:27
Some people actually live right…and it works!
IV. Christianity is not blind (but the world is). 19:32
True beauty is the holiness of God on the inside, why do we cover it up with make up and expensive clothes. Let Jesus out!
V. There is Hope! God delivers his people 19:37, 41
1. He is our defender Prov. 22:23, Is 51:22, Ps 106:8
2. It is better to be in riot in God’s will than to have peace outside of God’s will.
3. Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers them from all of them. Psalm 34:19
"If you’ll hold on to me for dear life," says God, “I’ll get you out of any trouble…Call me and I’ll answer, be at your side in bad times; I’ll rescue you, then throw you a party. I’ll give you a long life, give you a long drink of salvation!" Psalm 91:14-16 The Message
You are valuable to God! He loves you dearly! You are a precious commodity. You are more than a body or a pretty face to Him. You are the living witness of His love and salvation. He wants to deliver you! He has delivered us! He will deliver us! Receive His mercy and grace and then give it away.
So Let’s Have a Spiritual Riot!
• Let’s start right here, right now.
• Let’s get on our knees –everyone. You can’t keep sitting in the back!
• Let’s start at home. “We’re not going to watch that.” “You’re not wearing that.”
• Let’s stop shopping at places that put half-naked people on their windows. Just don’t go!
• Let’s stop promoting companies that pander sexual sin by wearing their logos.
• Let’s start believing that holy living actually works and leads to joy.
• Let’s turn off the TV, the stereo, and music that mocks purity.
• Let’s stop believing that experience is a better teacher than God’s word.
• Let’s admit that the message of the world does not work and the message of the Gospel does.
Conclusion: What does a riot look like?
1. What is our message? Christ in us the Hope of Glory!
2. What is the point of the story? People are saved!