Understanding the Problem and Peril of Humanity

Understanding The Problem and Peril of Humanity

Synposis: According to the Bible, mankind is in trouble because God is holy and we are unholy. We were originally made good but we became bad. Our parents sinned and their sin affected us. And their parents in turn sinned, all the way back to Adam and Eve, the first people.

God is a righteous judge and must judge sin because He is holy and sin hurts everyone. It hurts us, other people and most of all the heart of God. We are caught in a world system that is hostile to God where evil spirits have influence almost everywhere, including most churches. There are actually evil spirits at work in the lives of  everyone who disobeys God’s Word. We also have the problem that our own nature has been corrupted with pride, lust, deception and unbelief. We have no power to pay God back for the wrong we have done in the past. We have no power ourselves to change to make ourselves acceptable to God. The wages of sin is death.

Jesus came to save us, but we still have inclinations toward pride and independence from God that will take us to hell anyway unless we repent and believe the gospel.

This is a Severe Message. So many ask: “Why should I trust what the Bible says about these things?”

Why Trust the Bible? A Brief Introduction

(Note to group leader: We Can Move Over this Briefly for now – People May or May Not Need to Discuss this in depth – but it should not become the major focus of THIS lesson).

Firstly, even Jewish and Roman history mentions Jesus Christ as a real historical figure who died on a cross. And archeolology confirms the Bible records again and again as more discoveries are made.

Secondly, we have eyewitness accounts in the Bible and even from our times, that Jesus Christ is alive – that he has risen from the dead. These eyewitness accounts have the “ring of truth” and they were given by men who stood by their story even when it cost them their lives. So if Jesus believed in the Scriptures, we should also, because Jesus showed himself to be very special by rising from the dead.

Thirdly, compared to any other document in ancient history, we have existing manuscripts with Bible portions dated to times very close to the time the originals were written. Other manuscripts are sometimes more than 1000 years older than the originals would have been. There are also vast numbers of manuscripts, and it would have been hard to change the message without many people realising that a change was made.

Fourthly, the Bible contains hundreds of literally fulfilled and specific prophecies. For example, the many prophecies about the life of Jesus from the Old Testament.

Fifthly, the promises in the Bible actually WORK for those who believe. For example, healing, provision. God answers prayer, often miraculously, for example in divine healing. You could search youtube for further confirmation of this, or if someone has pain, a believer could drive it out here and now in most cases.

So the Bible might well be reliable. But Are We Really So Unholy?

What is your motivation for living? If you are a true Christian, everything you do should be for God’s honor and glory. But what most people live for is their own honor, their own desires (especially in most cases sexual desires but also greed) and their own comfort. They want to do things their own way.

The Ten Commandments and our disobedience to them show how unholy we are.

Read Exodus 20:1-17.

Questions For Discussion:

Have you ever put anything in your life above God?

Have you ever lied?

Have you ever stolen anything?

Have you ever lusted sexually for someone you were not married to?

Have you ever used the name of God as a swear word or lightly?

Have you given time every week to worship God and rest in His presence?

Have you always honored your father and mother?

Have you bowed down to idols? Have you ever used the occult to try to get supernatural help?

Have you ever desired to take what belongs to someone else?

If God was to judge you according to how well you have kept the Ten Commandments, would you go to heaven or hell?

The Law of Love

Jesus said, “Love your neighbour as yourself.” (Luke 10:27)

Discuss: What does this mean? What does this look like? Have you always done this? Have you ever done this?

Do you have a need for love? Do others? Why do you think God is so interested in us loving people?

Pride as the Main Barrier to Knowing God

You owe your existence to God. You did not create your body, your food, water or the air you breathe. There is a lot you don’t understand. You don’t even understand how your own brain works. But pride causes people to think that they know better than God how to live their life – even though God designed the human brain and much more! Pride causes people to think of themselves and their own glory and pleasure, and become indifferent to God’s honor. It also makes people unwilling to learn from God. With this attitude, you CANNOT be a disciple of Jesus Christ, because pride will cause you to be unwilling to hear and respond to the voice of God.

Signs of Pride

You fight with others. Proverbs 13:10 “By pride comes nothing but strife, but with the well-advised is wisdom”. If your relationships are bad, there is pride somewhere – not only in others, but also in you.

Selfishness. Pride teaches you that you are WAY more important than anybody and everybody else. So it makes you focus on your own needs, wants and desires without thinking of others. If you don’t think of others much, that is a sign of pride.

A Hard Heart – if the message of the Word of God – especially about the love of Jesus expressed through His suffering for you on the cross – does not touch your heart, or simply angers you, it is a sign of pride.

Rebellion – if you are determined to do things your own way against the commands of God, you are proud.

The Bible says that “God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble.” (James 4:6; 1 Peter 5:5). If it seems like God is resisting you, fighting you, or not answering your prayers, maybe the answer is to seek more humility. Once way of showing humility to God is seeking out HIS advice, His instructions, His Words and giving heed to His words before expecting HIM to give heed to YOUR words.

Question: What are some other signs of pride?

Does this mean that God wants us to think we are like rubbish, or worthless? What do you think?


Evil Spirits in the World

Read Ephesians 2:1-3

In the past you were spiritually dead because of your sins and the things you did against God. 2 Yes, in the past your lives were full of those sins. You lived the way the world lives, following the ruler of the evil powers that are above the earth. That same spirit is now working in those who refuse to obey God.3 In the past all of us lived like that, trying to please our sinful selves. We did all the things our bodies and minds wanted. Like everyone else in the world, we deserved to suffer God’s anger just because of the way we were. (Ephesians 2:1-3)

What does this say? What does this mean to you? How does it affect your friends and family?

 

Warning! Warning! Warning!

God made us for Himself. But if we choose to say “NO!” to God Almighty, if we refuse to know Him, love Him or serve Him in spite of us owing Him everything, He is going to deal with us severely – unless we change on that point.

“in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (2 Thessalonians 1:8)

“ I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish.” (Luke 13:5)

Believing for a while in Jesus and then giving up on our faith will leave us exposed to eternal judgment!

“But the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who believe for a while and in time of temptation fall away.” (Luke 8:13)

The person who is right with me  will live by trusting in me. But I will not be pleased with the one  who turns back in fear.” 39 But we are not those who turn back and are lost. No, we are the people who have faith and are saved. (Hebrews 10:38, 39)

More Questions for Discussion:

Do you believe this message about Mankind’s Problem is true?

Why or why not?

What do you think it will take to enter heaven finally?

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About Michael Fackerell

The Christian faith is about Jesus. He came to save the lost. About Jesus Christ, Bible teaching, Testimonies, Salvation, Prayer, Faith, Networking.

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