Romans 3:18 “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”
This sums up the root cause: “no fear of God”.
- No fear of accountability
- No fear of judgment
- No fear of retribution or vengeance
Indoctrinate people and the fear of God disappears:
- There is no God
- You were not created, you evolved by time and chance
- There is no judgment, there is no Hell, there is no after life
- The Bible is false, the Bible is for the weak
- Survival of the fittest, humanism
The Fear of God Restrains Evil
Our founding fathers in America knew that.
- “Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become more corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters.” (Benjamin Franklin)
- “A Republic must either preserve its virtue or lose its liberty.” (John Witherspoon)
- “The sum of all is, if we would most truly enjoy the gift of Heaven, let us become a virtuous people; then shall we both deserve and enjoy it. While on the other hand, if we are universally vicious and debauched in our manners, though the form of our Constitution carries the face of the most exalted freedom, we shall in reality be the most abject slaves.” (Samuel Adams)
- “I go on this great republican principle, that the people will have virtue and intelligence to select men of virtue and wisdom. Is there no virtue among us? If there be not, we are in a wretched situation. No theoretical checks — no form of government can render us secure. To suppose that any form of government will secure liberty or happiness without any virtue in the people, is an [impossible] idea, if there be sufficient virtue and intelligence in the community, it will be exercised in the selection of these men. So that we do not depend on their virtue, or put confidence in our rulers, but in the people, who are to choose them.” (James Madison)
- “But neither the wisest constitution nor the wisest laws will secure the liberty and happiness of a people whose manners are universally corrupt. Here therefore is the truest friend to the liberty of his country who tries most to promote its virtue, and who, so far as his power and influence extend, will not suffer a man to be chosen into any office of power and trust who is not a wise and virtuous man.” (Samuel Adams)
The Rejection of God
Romans 1:18 (NKJV) 18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness.
They suppress the truth in unrighteousness.
Romans 1:19–20 (NKJV) 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,
- We can know God exists by using our reasoning ability.
Romans 1:21–23 (NKJV) 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 man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.
Humanity Rejects the True God
- True reason would lead people to the true God.
So, what does God do in response?
Romans 1:24–32 (NKJV) 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. 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. 28 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.
- Wickedness – the continued state of wickedness; being evil by nature and in practice
- Covetousness – excessively desirous of wealth, greed, and the lust to have the possessions of others
- Maliciousness – deliberately harmful, spiteful, vicious and evil on purpose
- Full of envy – a constant feeling of discontent, coveting another person’s good fortune
- Murder – the taking of life by violence or force for any reason other than God- ordained justice and self-defense; abortion, euthanasia, gang violence, crime
- Strife – bitter conflict and discord, quarreling, rivalry and antagonism
- Deceit – the distortion of truth through misleading, exaggeration, fraud, trickery and cheating
- Evil-mindedness – having a mind that is continually weakened, a bad character and being completely desensitized to sin
- Whisperers – spreading gossip and rumors
- Backbiters – people who slander and speak evil of other people, back stabbers and betrayers
- Haters of God – those who actively and publicly defame God, blaspheme Him and denounce Him
- Violent – those who are uncontrolled, who wish to cause injury and destruction, furious and unconstrained, unrepentant of any pain or damage they cause
- Proud – people who have high opinions of themselves, having pride in their behavior and their own wisdom
- Boasters – those who exaggerate about themselves, vanity and excessive pride, to actively promote oneself
- Inventors of evil things – people will not only do the evil, they will sit around and think up ways to be evil, actively trying to invent and promote new ways to hurt others
- Disobedient to parents – dishonoring, neglectful and refusing to submit to the authority of parents; rebellious
- Undiscerning – people lack the ability to comprehend or recognize truth easily, accepting evil ideas and being unable to distinguish or discriminate right from wrong
- Untrustworthy – people will not keep their word; they have no conscience about keeping vows or doing what they know they should do
- Unloving – those who do not give love and affection, and except for selfish reasons, are incapable of it
- Unforgiving – people with no mercy who are completely unwilling to forgive any wrong or offense, no matter how slight
- Unmerciful – cruel and without pity showing no mercy for any reason, even pronouncing the very presence of mercy as a weakness and undesirable
Three times God says, “When you act like that, I will turn you over.” To a debased [reduced quality] mind
It explains so much of what we see today. A debased mind is a “lower quality” mind.
- The inability to think clearly, properly, reasonably, logically
- The inability to discern truth from lies
- The inability to be self aware, to avoid hypocrisy
- The inability to be self disciplined, truthful, of high integrity
- The inability to think “rightly” about what is important
Next time we will talk about what results in a culture/society when debased minds become the leaders…
To be continued…