Summary: In the hodge-podge world in which anything goes, God expects us to choose. You determine which type of man or woman you will be. Paul urges you to be a spiritual person focused on God and His will in your life.
1. Recent census numbers have been released
a. Consider this:
b. There are 6,852,475,000 people alive in the world today
c. By 2040 there will be 9,000,000,000
d. Even more sobering, if the Lord lets the world stand until 2050 we will see 150,000,000 deaths in the world each year
e. It's hard to imagine 150 m people dieing each year
2. And here's the thing we are going to learn from Paul today:
3. They all fit into one of three categories:
a. Natural man
b. Carnal man
c. Spiritual man
4. And group number one has the biggest population by far
TRANSITION: Let's examine some characteristics about the:
I. Natural man
A. He is actually found in 1 Corinthians 2:14, "But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned"
1. He foolishly sees the things of God as foolishness
2. He rejects the concept of God as a simple-minded hoax
3. He overlooks the enormity of evidence around him
a. I saw an article from CNN that discussed the search for Higgs Boson
b. Supposedly this played a role in the Big Bang that started the universe
c. Man are spending billions of dollars to prove themselves right and God wrong and coming up short
4. This is the pride of the natural man
B. The natural man is lost
1. His failure to accept God leads to his own demise
2. Instead he chooses what he considers the path of least resistance
a. Just don't worry about it and it'll be OK
b. How often does that work?
c. Matthew 7:13-14 say he will have plenty of company on his foolish choice
C. But he does not see his lost condition
1. Majority rule in his mind is real vision
2. but he is blind to his own true end
3. John 9:38-41, "Then he said, "Lord, I believe!" And he worshiped Him. And Jesus said, "For judgment I have come into this world, that those who do not see may see, and that those who see may be made blind." Then some of the Pharisees who were with Him heard these words, and said to Him, "Are we blind also?" Jesus said to them, "If you were blind, you would have no sin; but now you say, 'We see.' Therefore your sin remains"
a. Some close their eyes to the dangers of their lives
b. Their eyes must be opened
D. How do we reform the natural man?
1. Lead him to the cross of Christ like Philip and the Ethiopian
2. Be a tool of reformation for the world, set the example and teach the truth
3. Be matter of fact but loving
a. There is more blind faith in evolution than for creation
b. God expects love and obedience from everyone
c. There is an eternal penalty to pay for failure to love and obey
TRANSITION: Let's move on to the:
II. Carnal man
A. He is the babe in Christ
1. The immature one
2. 3:1, "And I, brethren, could not speak to you as to spiritual people but as to carnal, as to babes in Christ"
3. He needs spiritual growth
a. He has the physical strength of a man
b. But the spiritual IQ is lacking
c. He requires constant attention
B. He must grow
1. Hebrews 5:12, "For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food"
2. These men languish on milk not solid food
a. 3:2-3, "I fed you with milk and not with solid food; for until now you were not able to receive it, and even now you are still not able; for you are still carnal. For where there are envy, strife, and divisions among you, are you not carnal and behaving like mere men?"
b. They must be fed and challenged to grow
3. God intends for them to learn to feed solid food to others
a. First they must learn to eat meat themselves
b. The hard tough seasoned word of God is what grows us
C. The carnal man has the principles but has not progressed
1. He is proud of his spiritual progress
2. But he has not really progressed
a. He will respond loudly thinking he has all the answers
b. He shows off his knowledge as often as he can
c. But his knowledge is really shallow
D. Christians must grow to spiritual adulthood
1. The carnal mind still finds himself quarreling internally
2. Galatians 5:19-21, "Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God"