Home Bible Study- Lutz, Florida
Established November 2008
Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth
(2 Timothy 2:15)
This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. 1Timothy 2:3-4
I want to welcome back, all our regular visitors.
If you’ve just stopped by to “check us out,” I pray that you’ll stay long enough to see what we’re about and return with an open Bible comparing what’s written here with God’s Word. After all, this isn’t about me it’s about what God has said in this book.
Please don’t be one of those Christians who attend church, sit in their favorite seat week after week, and accept whatever is “dished” out to them in the form of Bible teaching without checking to see if what is being offered lines up with the Word of God. I used to be one of these people… Make it your practice to have your Bible with you and open to the passage, take notes, and then compare what has been said to Scripture. See if it lines up with God’s Word.
I know of a man who did just that. During a Sunday sermon, his church leader taught his congregation that there are many ways to reach heaven. After the service ended, this man met him at the door of the church with his Bible open to John 14:6. He said, “Pastor, you said there are many ways to heaven. But Scripture says Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me. How do you respond to this?” The pastor replied, “Oh, that doesn’t mean what it says.”
My friends that passage of Scripture means exactly what it says! Don’t be fooled.
One of the common practices used by many churches today is “proof texting.”
Proof texting is the method by which a person appeals to a biblical text to prove or justify a theological position without regard for the context of the passage they are citing.
I have an example of proof-texting for you. I’ve written about the “The Prosperity Gospel” in previous Bible lessons. This message being “dished” out to many congregations today is false teaching, but it is very much in vogue in both the small and the mega-churches across this land. Why?
The masses like it. It’s the kind of message, “People with “itchy ears” desire to hear.” They like the idea that God wants them to have “free stuff.”
Isn’t this the attitude of our free-wheeling society today? Didn’t we just witness this very mind-set in the last election? What happened to the values associated with hard work, dedication to duty, sacrifice, etc. that go along with living a normal life in America? One of these is: a fair day’s pay for an honest day’s work.
Today the slogan appears to be: What? You want me to work?
Far too many people have the attitude that society “owes them a living” today.
They want the federal government to feed them, shelter them, provide them free medical care, and any other need they can dream up including free cell phones.
And this federal administration in particular has been more than willing to meet all their requests for “free stuff,” while ignoring the obvious threats to the future of this country; its financial status, etc.
Do you find it strange then that people are flocking to hear the prosperity gospel today?
People can’t get enough of it! The preachers who profess to believe and teach this gospel have failed to Rightly Divide the Word of Truth, at best. 180 degrees out from that, they are in it strictly for the cash.
Here is one example of Proof Texting used by many prosperity gospel preachers.
14: in order that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles…
The Bible verse does NOT end at the word Gentiles but they end it there because this is all the information they want to “take” from this verse. These false teachers stop in mid Bible verse claiming that the Gentiles have inherited all the blessings God gave to Abraham. These include both Spiritual and material things.
But prosperity teachers ignore the second half of the Bible verse, which reads:
14b: so that we would receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
Our Apostle Paul is clearly teaching the Galatians (and us) of the Spiritual blessing of salvation, and NOT the material blessing of wealth.
Prosperity gospel preachers claim the way you receive “stuff” from God is through FAITH. You must believe that God will respond to your “prayers” for stuff. If you didn’t get your “stuff” from God, you obviously didn’t demonstrate the proper faith, so they say.
They ignore the truths of the Abrahamic Covenant which is an Unconditional Covenant between the LORD God and the nation of Israel. Israel’s blessings were earthly in nature whereas the gentiles (who would be blessed due to this covenant one day future) rewards are heavenly in nature.
This is an extra teaching and separate from the Roman’s study, but I hope this has enlightened a few of you.
Let’s get back to the business of Bible study – Rightly Divided.
Please open your Bible to Romans chapter one.
We have been studying the four “For’s” found in Romans 1:16-18. The truth is, most people are casual Bible readers and when they see these verses they keep right on going. They miss what the Apostle Paul is actually saying.
This is why I keep saying, “Bible reading is NOT Bible study.”
Bible reading is a COMPONENT of Bible study – it is not a substitute.
But we are going to park on each one and before we’re done we will have gained a much greater understanding of these.
1) For I am not ashamed of the gospel
2) for it is the power of God for salvation
3) For in it the righteousness of God is revealed
4) And then in verse 18 the next “For” which makes the gospel necessary:
We’ve examined all of these “for’s “above except for number four. We’ll get to that in just a minute, but let’s review Scripture first. I think this is best because it lays the groundwork for what we are about to study. Let’s drop in at Romans 1:17
Unbelief and Its Consequences
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 that which is known about God is evident (where) within them; for God made it evident to them.
20: For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.
21: For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations (science), and their foolish heart was darkened.
22: Professing to be wise, they became fools,
23: and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.
Now let’s attend to Paul’s fourth “for.”
4) For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness…
These few words, sum up all of Scripture as to the Holy God’s attitude toward sin.
In addition, Paul’s fourth “for” reveals mankind’s appalling sinful state, per the Creator God. It further demonstrates society’s need of the Gospel of Grace because none could obtain the favor of God, or escape his wrath by their own works or good deeds.
Our Creator God's invisible power and Godhead are so clearly shown in the breathtaking works he has made, that even idolaters and wicked Gentiles are left without excuse.
For the wrath of God
God directs His wrath against two areas: ungodliness and unrighteousness.
God is not anti-man or anti-woman. God is anti-sin.
God loves the sinner but hates sin.
Ungodliness is lack of reverence towards God. This is sin against God.
Our sin disregards God. Ungodliness results in unrighteousness.
The effect of sin against God results in acts that are not right with God.
God’s wrath is against ALL sin without exception! No such thing as a “little” sin.
“…who suppress the truth”
The word suppress comes from two words: to hold and down. The truth comes to people but they hold it down – to keep it from affecting their lives. They do not want anything to do with God’s revelation; they reject His truth!
The truth here is general truth about creation. It is not about salvation or the cross.
However, God revealed enough about Himself to lay blame against those who have “suppressed” the truth of His existence – and they are without excuse.
The word unrighteousness is used twice in verse 18, placing greater emphasis on it.
People who are unrighteous are “not RIGHT with God.” Their motivation for rejecting God’s revelation is that they do not want to be “right with God.” The unrighteous type prefer to go their own way – not God’s way.
(To be continued)
© Copyright 2011
GJ Heitzman’s Ministry
All Rights Reserved