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The Wrath of God

Part 2: The Self-Destruction of a Nation

Pastor Gary Buchman
Emmitsburg Community Bible Church

(8/8) I. Review - Wrath Ė a def. - The Wrath of God is Godís settled, determined indignation, anger, and condemnation because of sin, in which He acts to judge that sin. (v.18)

A. Two Reasons-

  1. Individually Ė everyone is a sinner, and God is Holy (Rom. 3:23; 5:24)
  2. Nationally Ėrejecting God and His truth (Deut. 8:6-18, Jer. 18; Rom. 1:18ff)

B. How is Godís wrath revealed? 5 ways

  1. The Curse Ė (Gen. 3:15ff)
  2. The Consequences of wrong decisions. (Gal. 6:7-8)
  3. The Cataclysmic disasters. (Gen. 6-9; Amos 4, Rev.)
  4. The Cessation of Godís Constraint. (Rom.1:24, 26, 28, cp. Ps. 81:11-12)
  5. The Condemnation of a Godless eternity. (Matt. 25:41, Rev. 20:11-15)

C. Committed to the Cure (Rom. 1:13-17)

  1. I am seeking fruit (v. 13)
  2. I am a debtor (v. 14)
  3. I am ready (v. 15)
  4. I am not ashamed (v. 16)
  5. I know the power (v. 17)

II. The Five Step Process of National Self-Destruction (Romans 1:18-32)

Our first President said these words as He left office, "Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, Religion and Morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of Patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of Men and Citizens. The mere Politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and cherish them. A volume could not trace all their connections with private and public felicity (Happiness or contentment). Let it simply be asked, where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation desert the oaths which are the instrument of investigation in Courts of Justice? And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle." (George Washingtonís farewell address.) That used to be required reading but no more. Why?

"God who gave us life gave us liberty. Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed a conviction that these liberties are the gift of God? Indeed, I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, that his justice cannot sleep forever." (T. Jefferson- notes to the state of Virginia, panel 3 Jefferson Memorial)

"And whereas it is the duty of nations as well as of men, to own their dependence upon the overruling power of God, to confess their sins and transgressions, in humble sorrow, yet with assured hope that genuine repentance will lead to mercy and pardon; and to recognize the sublime truth, announced in the Holy Scriptures and proven by all history, that those nations only are blessed whose God is the Lord.

And, insomuch as we know that, by His divine law, nations like individuals are subjected to punishments and chastisements in this world, may we not justly fear that the awful calamity of civil war, which now desolates the land, may be but a punishment, inflicted upon us, for our presumptuous sins, to the needful end of our national reformation as a whole People? We have been the recipients of the choicest bounties of Heaven. We have been preserved, these many years, in peace and prosperity. We have grown in numbers, wealth and power, as no other nation has ever grown. But we have forgotten God. We have forgotten the gracious hand which preserved us in peace, and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us; and we have vainly imagined, in the deceitfulness of our hearts, that all these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom and virtue of our own. Intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us!" (Abraham Lincoln) He could be preaching Deut. 8)

Some sage has said, "The only thing we learn from history is that we donít learn from history." Another has said, "Those who donít learn from history are doomed to repeat it."

A Nation in Self Destruction begins with:

A. Suppression of Truth (vv. 18-20)

18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse.

Godís wrath has been revealed from Heaven. First, by revelation; that is, God said what He would do and what would happen if men chose to believe the lie and disobey and dishonor Him. Secondly, His wrath has been revealed in the outpouring of His wrath on man in actuality, especially the first four of the five that we spoke of. The fifth has been revealed but will not be experienced until physical death occurs.

How does a Nation self-destruct and incur the wrath of God? They begin by suppressing the truth.

The word, suppress, or hold in verses18 means:

  1. to put down by authority or force: subdue <suppress a riot>
  2. to keep from public knowledge: as: to keep secret: to stop or prohibit the publication or revelation of <suppress the test results>
  3. to exclude from consciousness: to keep from giving vent to: check <suppressed her anger>
  4. obsolete: to press down
  5. to restrain from a usual course or action <suppress a cough>b: to inhibit the growth or development ofÖ

Take any of those definitions and apply them and that is what we have done to the truth of Godís word. In order to do what we want instead of doing what is right, we have to put down, keep from public knowledge, keep secret, stop or prohibit, exclude from consciousness, press down, restrain the truth.

Consider that in the first half of the 20th century we taught the Bible in our public schools. In the 18th and 19th century we used the Bible to teach reading and the alphabet. The supreme court always defended the Bible and stated that it was essential to a childís development and declared in the 1890ís that we were a Christian nation. In 1954 we added the words, Under God, to our Pledge of Allegiance and on July 30th 1956 President Eisenhower signed into law that the motto, "In God We Trust," would be the official motto of the United States. Then in 1962 and 63 we took the unprecedented action of removing prayer and Bible reading from our schools and began to teach that man evolved from monkeys. WE then proceeded to remove the posting of the 10 commandments from schools and court houses, and Jesusí name from our prayers. Our nation criticized Presidents Reagan and Bush for quoting from the Bible. Children cannot be taught divine creation. Bill Nye the science guy thinks it will warp their minds. They must learn about the theory of evolution. All contrary to 200 years of history of government being based on the teachings and morals of Godís word.

Yet God has revealed Himself in Creation (cp. Psalm 19:1)

In Our Conscience and Conduct

In Our Covenants (Bible)

In Our Christ

In Our Conflict

In our Changed Lives and men prefer darkness over light

The United States has suppressed Truth and endorsed lies and elect as leaders those who boldly lie.

B. Apathy (vv. 21-23) 21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible manóand birds and four-footed animals and creeping things. Believe it or not every people group in the world believe in a god, a higher power. When Ann Sullivan was finally able to communicate with Helen Keller, the blind, and deaf lady, she told her about Jesus. Helen was only 5 or 6 and responded, I always knew about Him. I just didnít know his name. Eccl. 3:11 says He has put eternity in our hearts. We have to convince ourselves to the contrary that there is no God, because our hearts tell us otherwise.

But in our willful ignorance (Psalm 14:1 The fool has said in his heart, "There is no God."), we refuse to acknowledge Him. Nor are we thankful to Him and became futile in our thoughts. How so? We have done exactly what Deut. 8 warns us not to do. "Beware that you do not forget the Lord your God by not keeping His commandments, His judgments, and His statutes which I command you today, 12 lestówhen you have eaten and are full, and have built beautiful houses and dwell in them; 13 and when your herds and your flocks multiply, and your silver and your gold are multiplied, and all that you have is multiplied; 14 when your heart is lifted up, and you forget the Lord your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage; 15 who led you through that great and terrible wilderness, in which were fiery serpents and scorpions and thirsty land where there was no water; who brought water for you out of the flinty rock; 16 who fed you in the wilderness with manna, which your fathers did not know, that He might humble you and that He might test you, to do you good in the endó 17 then you say in your heart, ĎMy power and the might of my hand have gained me this wealth.í Jeremiah 18:12 says, "And they said, "That is hopeless! So we will walk according to our own plans, and we will every one obey the dictates of his evil heart."

Even Thanksgiving Day has become a day to thank each other or our lucky stars instead of Thanking God. History books have been re-written to say that the pilgrims thanked the Indians not God for their provision that first year.

We have become apathetic toward God. We donít care about Him unless there is a national disaster. Instead we promote pluralism, political correctness, separation of Church and State, the evolution of life and values and things that the Bible called abominable. We prefer moral relativism to moral absolutes and the highest court in the nation leads the way.

We worship men and our pets and mother nature, planet earth and not the Father of Creation.

C. Lust (v. 24) 24 Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, 25 who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.

Once we were able to push God out of our consciences we thought ourselves free to pursue the passions of our Bodies. On the heels of getting God out of schools came the sexual revolution, the playboy era and pornography. Sex became our new object of worship. Philip Yancy in his book, Rumors of Another World, said, "When a society loses it faith in its gods, or God, lesser powers rise to take its place, Blocked longings seek new routesÖ.In modern Europe and the U.S. sex has a near sacred quality of mythic numinous (divine) power." Our books, movies, sit-coms, advertisements, clothes, etc., all display our fixation on our God. For years Sports Illustrated sold subscriptions to their magazine not with sports, but with their near pornographic swimsuit issues.

Love and relationships have nothing to do with our love of sex. Tina Turner once asked, "Whatís love got to do with it?" A Swedish Rock band sang, "In Lust we trust." And the Bloodhound gang sang, "you and me baby ainít nothing but mammals, lets do it like they do it on the Discovery Channel." And what has God done? He gave them up. You donít want me, you donít want the best. You think your way is better? Itís yours, I will back off. And that brings us to:

D. Perversion (vv. 26-27). 26 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.

Homosexuality and Transgenderism have become the new normal. Listen carefully to this quote and see if you can guess where it came from. "Even in purely non-religious terms, homosexuality represents a misuse of the sexual faculty and in the words of oneÖeducator, of, "human construction." It is a pathetic little second rate substitute for reality, a pitiable flight from life. As such it deserves fairness, compassion, understanding and when possible, treatment. But it deserves no encouragement, no glamorization, no rationalism, no fake status as a minority martyrdom." Where did that come from? Answer, January 21st 1966 issue of Time Magazine.

We have witnessed a nation that considered homosexuality a perversion and criminally punishable become a nation that embraces and endorses homosexuality. God destroyed cities and had the inhabitants of Canaan destroyed because they practiced perversion. Read Leviticus chapters 18 and 20. Paul makes it clear that those who practice these perversions will not enter the kingdom of heaven (1 Cor. 6:9-10).

In a book published about 20 years ago called Walking Tall, by menís author Steve Farrar wrote this:

"Militant Homosexuals like to paint themselves as a minority. That is by design. Marshall Kirk and Erastes Pill published an article in the homosexual magazine Guide, in November 1987. The article, "The Overhauling of Straight America."

outlines a strategy by which homosexuals can best implement their agenda. Here are the main points as outlined in the gay strategy.

  1. Desensitization, "to desensitize the public is to help it view homosexuality with indifference instead of keen emotion."
  2. Portray gays as victims not as aggressive challengers. "In any campaign to win over the public, gays must be cast as victims in need of protection so the straights will be inclined by reflex to assume the role of protector." In other words, make homosexuality a minority
  3. Give the Protectors a just cause. "Our campaign should not demand direct support for homosexual practices, but instead make anti-discrimination as its theme."
  4. Make victimizers look bad. "To be blunt-they must be vilifiedÖthe public should be shown images of ranting homophobes whose secondary traits disgust middle America. These images might include the Ku Klux Klan demanding that gays be burned alive or castrated.

Marshall Kirk has one other bit of advice for those trying to elicit sympathy for the plight of the gay movement: "In the early stages of the campaign the public should not be shocked and repelled by premature exposure to homosexual behavior. Instead the imagery of sex per se should be down- played, and the issue of gay rights reduced as far as possible, to an abstract social question."

Thatís what we have done with Rosie OíDonnell, Ellen Degeneres, the old show Will and Grace and now the TV is filled with homosexual imagery and support of bisexual, transsexual, and transgender confusion. WE are made to believe that anyone who does not support this is archaic and bigoted homophobes. Remember just a few years ago when the Boy Scouts were vilified for refusing homosexual scout leaders. Now Gay pride and gay day parades are held all over the country.

Did you see the article that suggested that a follow up to the Disney animated movie Frozen, should have the Queen Elsa in a lesbian relationship?

The goals of the authors quoted have been realized. We donít think of the acts that homosexuals do, which I find repulsive, to an emphasis on the civil rights of homosexuals as a true minority. Pornography, lesbianism, male homosexuality and more are a deep perversion of Godís gift of marital sexual love.

What has God done? This is the second time it says, "God gave them up." He has removed His restraints and His protection and grace. He lets them do what they want apart from His grace. That has led to the spread of HIV/AIDS and other venereal diseases and deaths and will lead the homosexual to hell.

E. The Fifth step is Depraved Thinking. (vv.28-32) And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, 30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; 32 who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.

Here is the third time it says, "God gave them over." This time it is to their dark depraved, debased, corrupt, evil thinking. The KJV says a reprobate, a corrupt, evil, and rejected by God way of thinking. Letís just read this list without commenting on each one because there simply isnít enough time. If God were in our consciences we could not do these things, so we must get rid of the knowledge of God.

They know that if these are sins, they would all deserve hell, but they have convinced themselves that God is irrelevant and therefore no in their thoughts and then they praise, applaud, approve those who choose darkness over light.

III. What Do You Do?

A. Self- Examination and Repentance Ė How has these thoughts affected you and your thinking?

B. Teach Your Children (grandchildren) Well

C. Speak Truth with Love

D. Pray for Revival

E. Model Righteousness

Letís Pray about it!

Read other thoughtful writings by Pastor Gary Buchman