Whatsoever Things Are True
by Dan Coburn
Pastor, Emmanuel Baptist Church
"I'm so glad I'm not like them."
Ever say that?  Ever think it?  If not, you may skip the balance of this text; (and repent of lying).  For the rest of us, Lets ponder.
Nugget:   The majority of converts just post Jesus were Jewish converts. This was predominantly true until Acts Chapter 10 and following,  where the majority of the converts were Not Jewish; (Hellenistic, Greek, Gentile or any other moniker ascribed to people who were traditionally without God). In Romans Chapter 1, Paul really lays it on the "worldly people"; those with/out God. He gives both a litany of their sin and a progression of the consequences. He was waxing eloquently, and his readers/audience was really enjoying it. "They are inherently liars" - I paraphrase.  "They are evil by nature. Absolutely perverted. Selfish to the exclusion of all else!  They actually celebrate sin - Can you imagine? And if they don't participate in a given sin, they applaud those who do.  What's wrong with them?"   
Now, at this point, you may be saying in your heart: "He was talking about the folks on the opposite side of my political isle".  For our purposes, let's say OK,  Whichever side you are on, he was talking about the other side.  Take a deep vindicated breath, cause it's going to be short lived. Remember the Meat of The Word is always, Application - as we turn the Spiritual Switch:   Since God loves you too much to leave you where you are, and since He is a God of Truth, the first verse in Chapter 2 says: "Therefore you are without excuse, you that judge, because your condemnation falls back on you as you are guilty of the same things".  (loose translation)   In vs 3, he adds: "And since you are guilty of these same things, don't imagine for a second that you will escape judgment".   "Ok preacher, if this is true, we're all hosed. What's your point?"   Point is stated clearly by Peter during the Council of Jerusalem in Acts chapter 15 vs 11. In a similar situation, where one side thought itself elitist to the other, Peter says: "But we believe  that  through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they".  They aren't the enemy. We war not with flesh and blood. They are Jesus' and by extension our - target demographic. It's hard to share the love of God with someone you hate. "But ye have not so learned Christ" Eph. 4:20









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