Written by Darlene Quiring
Notice these 4 reason that are given for the wrath of God. Romans 1:18-32
I. V. 18 MAN’S REBELLION TOWARD GOD
A. The Nature Of Man’s Sin – Man is ungodly by nature and by choice. This means that he has no relationship with God. Because He has no relationship with God, his relationship with his fellow man is also destroyed. Man is in open rebellion against the Lord and this is by his own choice! (Ill. This is proven by verses like Rom. 3:10; 12.)
B. The Suppressing Nature Of Man – Another sign of man’s rebellion is the fact that he knows the truth about God. This will be revealed more clearly in a moment. Even though he knows the truth, he “holds”, or “suppresses” the truth.
C. The Stubborn Nature Of Man – Man willfully suppresses the truth of God so that he may continue in his sins! Mankind is absolutely enslaved to his sin, Eph. 2:1-3! Beyond that, man stubbornly holds to his sins while he seeks to undermine the truth of God.
I. Man’s Rebellion Toward God
II. V. 19-20 MAN’S REVELATION OF GOD
(Ill. What is this truth that man suppresses? It is the very revelation of God Himself. You see, God has a strong desire to reveal Himself to men! God wants them to come to know about Him so that they will come to know Him personally. To do this, God manifests Himself to man in millions of ways every day. Let’s notice some of them tonight.)
A. The Place Of God’s Revelation – Notice where Paul says that God is revealed – “in them“. The idea is that men have all the truth they need to come to know God within themselves. The truth of God is in the heart and in the mind of mankind!
(Ill. As a very young girl, Helen Keller was stricken by a disease that left her blind, deaf and mute. A lady named Anne Sullivan worked tirelessly and selflessly to help Helen learn to communicate. Eventually, Helen learned to communicate through touch, and she even learned to talk! When Anne Sullivan tried to tell Helen Keller about God, the girl’s response was that she already knew about Him – she just didn’t know His name.)
All this teaches us that even without a Bible, man can come to know about God! I praise the Lord for this truth about God! His desire to reach man runs so deep that He places the revelation of Himself within the very creatures that have turned their backs on Him! What a Lord!
B. The Power Of God’s Revelation – The power of God’s revelation of Himself lies in its scope! God has placed His truth all about us. The Bible backs this up – Psa. 19:1-6. God’s revelation of Himself is so strong and so clear that every rational creature are bound to acknowledge and worship Him! (Ill. The Prodigal Son – Luke 15:17)
(Ill. Notice several areas where God’s Person is on display!
1. Think of the seed that becomes a mighty tree.
2. Think of birds that are able to navigate by the stars. Even when they are raised in a windowless room and shown an artificial sky, they are able to turn themselves in the right direction.
3. Think that there are giant telescopes that can view objects that are over 4 billion light years away. That is a distance of 25 million septillion miles.
4. Think that most scientists now believe that this massive universe came into existence at a specific instance in time. Did you know that among major scientists evolution is very much out of vogue? Many now suspect that a higher intelligence had everything to do with it.
5. Think that at any given instant there are over 1,800 storms in operation at any given time. The energy needed to create and sustain those storms amounts to the incredible figure of 1,300,000,000 horsepower!
6. Think that there are over 10 million species of insects in the world.
7. Think that the earth is 25,000 miles in circumference, weighs 6 septillion, 588 sextillion tons and hangs on nothing! It spins at 1,000 miles per hour with absolute precision and careens through space around the sun at the speed of 1,000 miles per minute in a yearly orbit that is 580 billion miles long!
8. Think that the head of a comet can be from 10,000 to 1,000,000 miles long and travel at a speed of 350 miles per second.
9. Think that the sun’s radiated energy could be converted into horsepower it would be equivalent to 500 million, million, billion horsepower. Each second it consumes about 4 million tons of matter.
10. Think that like from the sun travels at 186,281 miles per second. At this rate, it would take light 125,000 years just to travel across our galaxy, and the Milky Way is just one galaxy among billions in the universe.
Now, imagine that all of this just happened! No way! God did all these things to prove to man that He is real and that He possesses great power! No wonder that Bible declares, “The fool hath said in his heart, there is no God.”
C. The Purpose Of God’s Revelation – The purpose is to force man to a moment of decision! God’s desire is that every person bow before Him in humble repentance and worship. However, not all will! Therefore, God has given man every conceivable revelation of Himself and has left those who refuse to get right with God without any excuse for their continued state of sin!
(Ill. The universe in the Lord’s courtroom. In it, He has proven conclusively that He exists. Those who refuse to believe in Him have been faced with the evidence and are left with no excuse for their behavior. They are guilty as charged and when they face Jesus at the Great White Throne, they will hear the charges read in clear terms. They will all be forced to bow before Him and acknowledge Him as Lord of all!)
I. Man’s Rebellion Toward God
II. Man’s Revelation Of God
III. V. 21 MAN’S REJECTION OF GOD
A. A Reckless Choice – When man has been faced with the truth of God and he makes his stand against God, he has moved into the realm of rejection. This rejection of God is seen in 2 areas of life.
1. They Gave God No Glory – That is, they refused to magnify and exalt God as God. Their primary goal was the glorification of self! Men fail to honor God when they refuse to give Him the place in their lives that He deserves. God deserves the first place, but those who walk in unrighteousness and open rebellion against the Lord give Him no place in their lives. Therefore, He is not glorified in them! As a result, He is filled with wrath at the foolishness and sinfulness of man!
2. They Gave God No Gratitude – While they denied God, they took all the things that He had given man to teach man about Himself and they used it for their own selfish gains without a single thought being given to the great Creator
B. The Resulting Condition – Because they rejected the Lord and His truth, they were given over to wretched lives. Note what the rest of this verse says about their condition.
1. Theirs Is A Hollow Life – “vain imaginations” means a futile existence. They are living for themselves, or so they think, in reality, they are merely wasting their time. They fill their days with themselves, but eventually, those days will end and they will find that their time has been wasted and entirely in vain!
(Ill. What does it mean if a man accomplishes great things in this life and in the end goes to Hell? The answer is, it means that he has wasted his life and it would have been far better for him had he never been born in the first place! If he dies without Jesus, he has lost the only thing he genuinely possessed. He has lost his soul – Mark 8:36-37.)
2. Theirs Is A Horrible Life – This verses says that when they turned their backs on the light of God’s truth, “their foolish heart was darkened.” What men seem not to understand is that the only alternative to Light is darkness! As they move farther away from the Light, they move farther into the dark!
(Ill. This is why I say their life is a horrible life. It is bad to think of the possibility of anyone going to Hell without God. But, add to that a life spent in this cruel world without a relationship with the loving, heavenly Father! That is a horrible life! To life all those years trapped in a dark dungeon of your own making. Living there, thinking you are happy and whole and all the while the cancer of sin is destroying you from within. Then, when it is too late to realize that all the while you could have had a relationship with God and then went to His Heaven and spent eternity there with Him. That is a horror beyond words!)
IV. V. 22-23 MAN’S REACTION TO GOD
A. V. 22 He Reacts In Foolish Regression – When man turns on the Lord, and closes his eyes to the truth of God, he really thinks he is wise! His perception of himself is that he has all the angels figured out and all the bases covered. In reality, God says that while they think they are so smart, they are nothing but fools!
(Ill. Sinners have it all backwards! Look at 1 Cor. 1:25-31. To the world’s eyes the Christian is the biggest fool in existence! He misses out on all the pleasures of the world. He places his faith in a man who died 2,000 years ago, but looks for Him to return at any time. From God’s perspectives, however, the wisest decision any person has ever made is to place their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. I would rather be perceived to be a fool tonight than I had to live in sin and prove that I am a fool at the end of the road.)
B. V. 23 He Reacts In False Religion – You see, man says “No!” to God, then he turns around and invents things to worship! Talk about foolish! What the Lord is telling us is that man is a religious creature. If he doesn’t worship God, he will manufacture a god to worship. If that doesn’t scratch his itch, he will find another man to give his worship to. If that doesn’t fit the bill, then he will ultimately set himself up as his own little god and will live his life only to worship and glorify himself.
(Ill. That’s what a man does when he is left to himself! However, notice if you will the downward spiral: man, birds, animals and reptiles. It is just the opposite of what some people believe about evolution. Notice that when man steps away from God he doesn’t evolve, he devolves. He doesn’t progress upward, he regresses downward. All of this tends to prove the point that a life without God is a life that is on a downward pathway! Walking away from God doesn’t prove that you are wise, it merely proves that you are a fool, and it proves that you want your life to be a disaster and your eternity a failure. It is a sad shape to be in!)
These are the four reasons why God is angry with sinners! If you ask me, a holy and righteous God has plenty of reason to be filled with wrath.