Who Needs The Gospel?  They Do!      Rom. 1:18-32      Sept. 11, 2005
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Introduction
    The lesson title needs clarification so that the  "They," includes everyone.  The gospel is "good news" for all.  Paul in the Book of Romans makes some hard statements about sin and sinners.  He answers some questions that still are ask with regularity, such as
"what about the person who has never heard the gospel message.  "He answers by saying they are  "without excuse."  Creation itself reveals the truth of God.  If people respond to the truth they receive, I believe God will make sure they receive more.  So Who Needs The Gospel? They Do!
 

1.    Who Needs the Gospel?  Those . . Without Excuse.  1:18-20
        18 For God's wrath is revealed from heaven against all godlessness and unrighteousness of people who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth, 19 since what can be known about God is evident among them, because God has shown it to them.  20 From the creation of the world His invisible attributes, that is, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what He has made. As a result, people are without excuse.

    A.    Those Without Excuse through . . Suppression.  1:18
        18 For God's wrath is revealed from heaven against all godlessness and unrighteousness of people who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth, 19 since what can be known about God is evident among them, because God has shown it to them.

    B.    Those Without Excuse through . . Sightings.  1:19
        20 From the creation of the world His invisible attributes, that is, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what He has made. As a result, people are without excuse.

        Paul specifically says these people are without excuse.One reason he said this is because they suppressed the truth.  This is true even after God took the initiative to show them the truth, but their unrighteousness suppressed it.  Did you ever think about unrighteousness suppressing the truth?   It is an interesting thought. They were also without excuse because of the sightings God gave them causing knowledge of His attributes, saying they are "clearly seen."
 

2.    Who Needs the Gospel?  Those . . Without Exultation.  1:21--23

        A.    Those Senselessly . . Without Exultation.    1:21
                21 For though they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God or show gratitude. Instead, their thinking became nonsense,
                and their senseless minds were darkened.

        B.    Those Stupidly . . Without Exultation.  1:22
                22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools  23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man, birds, four-footed animals, and reptiles.

        These people expressed their senseless minds; even though they possessed a knowledge about God.  The text says. "their thinking became nonsense."   It follows then we can say they acted stupidly because, "Claiming to be wise, they became fools Exulting the Lord expresses wisdom; what a privilege to glorify and praise Him.
 

 
3.     Who Needs the Gospel?  Those . . Without Ethics.  1:24-27

        A.    Those Without . . Sexual Ethics.    1:24 & 26-27
            24 Therefore God delivered them over in the cravings of their hearts to sexual impurity, so that their bodies were degraded among themselves. 26 This is why God delivered them over to degrading passions. For even their females exchanged natural sexual intercourse for what is unnatural.  27 The males in the same way also left natural sexual intercourse with females and were inflamed in

their lust for one another. Males committed shameless acts with males and received in their own persons the appropriate penalty for their perversion.
 

        B.    Those Without . . Significant Ethics.  1:25

                25 They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served something created instead of the Creator, who is blessed forever.  Amen.

        Several have said , "it is sex o'clock in the United States."  The climate in Rome during the first century would be similar to our nation.  All kinds of sexual promiscuity took place during this time in Rome, and they were without ethics sexually.  Unnatural sex acts caused God to give them over to depraved minds.  Paul must have expected more morality from the ladies as he says, "even their females exchanged natural sexual intercourse for what is unnatural."  Our ethics come from what we worship.  The people of Rome worshiped the created rather than the Creator so they lacked significant ethics.  Where does America get it's ethics?  Today I read a magazine article rating entertainer's incomes, and a prominent Lesbian talk show host makes 16 million a year. We certainly do not, as a nation, possess Biblical Ethics. God says there is a built-in punishment for these sins.  Could "sexually transmitted diseases be part of the punishment?"
 

4.    Who Needs the Gospel?  Those . . Without Evaluation.  1:28-32

        A.    Without . . Mental Evaluation.  1:28
        28 And because they did not think it worthwhile to have God in their knowledge, God delivered them over to a worthless mind to do what is morally wrong.

 

        B.    Without . . Moral Evaluation.  1:29-31
            29 They are filled with all unrighteousness, evil, greed, and wickedness. They are full of envy, murder, disputes, deceit, and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, arrogant, proud, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents,  31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, and unmerciful.
 

        C.    Without . . Meaningful Evaluation.   1:32
        32 Although they know full well God/s just sentence "that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them, but even applaud others who practice them."

        Paul tells us three times in the text what God gave these folks over to (check vss 24,26.)  Now in verse 28 it says God gave these folks "over to a worthless mind," so I say they were without mental evaluation.  Check the 21 terms used to describe the morals (sexual sins) of these people.  They expressed a total lack of moral evaluation.  So Who Needs The Gospel?They Do!   I am pleased to be part of the "they" who have received the gospel.  Amen?  Amen!