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The Making of Fools: Studies from Romans 1
Apr 21, 2008
"The Making of Fools"
STUDIES FROM ROMANS 1
"Therefore God gave them over...For this reason
God gave them over...And just as they did not see
fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over..."
Perhaps the greatest danger is not getting what we deserve ("mercy" has been defined as "God not giving us what we deserve") but rather, getting what we want. Hell* is the "permanezation" (I think I just decided to make up a new word meaning "to make permanent") of the rebellious heart:
"The place where personal sovereignty is normal is called Hell.
It is a place of eternal conflict. Billions of willful, stubborn,
prideful, selfish humans and fallen angels will compete for
control...If Heaven is the
supreme resulting in peace and harmony, then hell is the logical
opposite, resulting in pain and conflict."
-Jan David Hettinga, Follow Me, p.88.
Hell is that place where "willful blindness" becomes "penal blindness" for eternity. The deliberate rejection of God becomes judicial punishment...FOREVER. In Romans 1 we see:
1. "God gave them over in the lusts of their heart to impurity" (see verse 24). Why? Because THEY CHOSE to "exchange the truth of God for a lie" (verse 25). They did the opposite of Moses:
"But Moses, choosing rather to endure ill-treatment with the people
of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin."
Every time we CHOOSE the "passing pleasures of sin" we take one step closer to being "given over" to them.
2. "God gave them over to degrading passions" (see verse 26). Why? Because THEY CHOSE the "passing pleasures of sin" (verse 25). One of life's great revelations come when we realize that among the "wages of sin" is death to understanding. Sin takes away our understanding, which left unrepented, ultimately leads to ruin (see Hosea ,14; Romans ).
"One of the penalties of sin is our acceptance of it.
It is not only God who punishes for sin, but sin
establishes itself in the sinner and takes its toll.
No struggling or praying will enable you to stop
doing certain things, and the penalty of sin is that
you gradually get used to it, until you finally come
to the place where you no longer even realize that it is sin."
-Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest, "The Master Will Judge"
3. "God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper" (verse 28). Why? Because consistent commitment to sin erodes reason.
"Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil;
who substitue darkness for light and light for darkness;
who substitue bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!
Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes
and clever in their own sight."
It is so very important to "understand" that the human conscience is something completely different from the "conviction of the Holy Spirit" (see John 16:8-11). The "conviction of the Holy Spirit" comes from an "unchanging God" (see Malachi 3:6; Hebrews 13:8) grounded in and affirmed by His "unchanging word" (see Psalm 19:7; Proverbs 30:5-6). The human conscience however, is culturally defined and as such, is as changeable as the ocean shores (see Jeremiah 17:9; Proverbs 28:26).
"Professing to be wise, they became fools" (Romans ).
*For further study click on, The Bible Says Series: Hell.
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