GOD'S THREE DEADLINES
Evangelist J. Harold Smith preached a sermon on "God's Three Deadlines," and applied it to individuals.
Today, I want to apply the title to our nation.
I see in Romans 1:18-32 what happens when a nation leaves God.
He gives them three deadlines.
In each step away from God, the Bible says "God gave them up."
As I studied Romans 1:18-32, I found that three times "God gave them up" v. 24, 26, 28.
In NIV it says, "God gave them over."
This leads to two questions,
(a) why did God give people up,
(b) what happened to people when God gave them up.
Everyone knows my role in attempting to elect President Bush and President Reagan.
These were God fearing men who tried to bring our nation back to righteousness,
although they were not perfect men, and our nation was surely not a perfect nation.
The sudden and devastating defeat of President Bush stunned most evangelicals.
Why was Bush put out of office?
Why would God allow Bush to be defeated?
Was Bush not trying to bring righteousness to our nation?
I'm not sure whether God is giving President Clinton to America because our nation
has passed the second deadline in God's schedule, or the actions and decision of President Clinton
will bring God's second deadline.
Biblical scholars say that "God gave His people up," in Romans 1, was not because
the people disobeyed spiritual law, i.e. the law revealed in the Bible.
These people were given up because they disobeyed God's natural law.
There is a body of natural law that great nations have recognized.
There is a body of law that is called "inalienable rights" or "self-evident truths."
This body of law is the basis of American law, British law, and Roman law.
Historians tell me all of Western Civilization is built on natural law, while Communist rule
and most governments that arise out of the bush (i.e. Third World Nations) are based on social contract,
or what is pragmatically good for the people as they work out an agreement through revolution
or some social process.
GOD'S THREE DEADLINES
1. God gave them up to sexual impurity, v. 24.
2. God gave them up to homosexual acts, v. 26.
3. God gave them up to homosexual civilization, v. 28.
What does it mean, "God gave them up?"
It means the same thing as when a man gives up on his marriage,
or a man who is trying to get a business started, gives it up.
He turns his energy and attention elsewhere.
What a terrible thing to say God has given up on America.
Does this mean that God has turned His attention to the revival taking place in South Korea,
Africa and South America?
God does not just turn His back on America as a person turns out the light
and the room instantly goes from bright light to darkness.
It has been happening slowly, systematically, but steadily.
It has been a slow erosion of morality, a creeping rotting of the core by sin.
The cancer is in our soul and we seem helpless to do anything about it.
I. GOD GAVE AMERICA UP TO SEXUAL IMPURITY, ROM. 1:21-24.
"Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanliness through the lust of their own hearts
to dishonor their own bodies between themselves" v. 24.
When God gives them up to "uncleanness," what does this mean?
The word uncleanness simply means to do that which is dirty, or filthy.
The Companion Bible says, "ceasing to know God (v.21) results in idolatry
and idolatry ends in filthiness of the flesh and spirit" p. 1684.
A. America gave up on God's law.
America knew God but regarded Him not.
The Bible says, "because that when they knew God, they glorified Him not as God" v. 21.
America has a Christian tradition based on the Protestant-Puritan ethic and a Judeo-Christian ethic,
all grounded in the word of God.
(1) We knew the Ten Commandments but kicked them out of our classrooms.
(2) We knew to pray, but bannded it from our public schools.
(3) We honored God with the Seventh Day of the week, but violated it with entertainment, sports, and recreation.
(4) We knew it was wrong to take God's name in vain, but the so-called free speech movement
brought filthiness and blasphemy into our grammar schools.
(5) We knew that the physical body was sacred and that sex should be pure, but movies, advertisement,
and the Woodstock generation began to treat the body like animals and that we were no longer made
in the image of God.
(6) We knew that life was sacred but Roe v. Wade told us that the pre-born were not sacred,
that a person did not have a soul that lives forever, and that people could commit fornication and adultery
and not worry about the consequences.
(7) We knew that sex was sacred, but the misuse of the birth control pill allowed people
to have free sex without consequences.
B. America gave itself up to sexual impurity.
The answer began in the sexual revolution.
We understood America had a traditional purity of the body, purity of sex, and purity of language.
It was reflected in our laws that you could not curse, you could not sexually abuse a child,
you could not rape a women, and you could not commit bestiality or homosexual acts.
There was a time when two homosexuals were caught in an act they were discharged from the military,
or in public life they were brought before a judge for indictment.
But the sexual revolution brought us the following.
Playboy magazine and letting down the bars of sexual purity. X-rated movies
and opening the flood gates of sexual impurity.
HBO and cable television letting down the bars of entertainment and bringing sex into the home.
Massage parlors letting down the bars of sexual restraint and cleanliness.
C. America became blinded because she turned from righteousness to sexual sin.
What happened when people knew God and turned from Him?
"Their foolish heart was darkened" v. 21.
When people turn away from God, they are blinded to basic moral principles,
and the foundation that has kept them out of trouble.
America rejected God, and she stepped across God's first deadline.
America came under the control of fools, and "changed the glory of the incorruptible God
...into an image made like corruptible man" Rom. 1:23.
Even though we had the great Billy Graham crusades, and even though we had more preaching
on television and radio than ever before, and even though we had the growth of the super churches,
people began to reject God in their lifestyle, thinking, and pursuit of vile imaginations.
As a result, "God gave them up."
How does God give up someone?
In the Old Testament we read, "the Spirit hath departed...Ichabod" I Sam. 4:21.
How does the Spirit depart?
When Israel was defeated as an army, they then realized that the Spirit had departed.
But the rot had set in years before and they didn't know what was happening.
Cancer had been eating in the body, but they didn't recognize its symptoms.
The Spirit departs:
1) slowly, 2) in measured steps of response to man's rebellion,
and 3) as if to warn us that God will not leave us if we will repent and turn to Him.
II. GOD GAVE AMERICA UP TO HOMOSEXUAL ACTS, ROM. 1:26.
God's second warning is very clear.
God gives up on a society because it allows homosexuality and lesbian activity to slowly seep into America.
Like poison in the kitchen cabinet or like a snake in the church's nursery,
God gives up on a nation when because it has allowed homosexuality to find a place in society.
God allowed our leaders to bring homosexuality into our nation because America allowed it.
The result of the second deadline is very clear in the book of Romans.
"For this cause God gave them up to vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use
of that which is against nature: and likewise also the men leaving the natural use of the women,
burn in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly,
and receiving in themselves that recompense of their error which was meet" v. 26-27.
To correctly interpret this second deadline, we must look at the word "vile affections,"
because God gave them up to vile affections.
The phrase, "affections" means lust or desires.
God left them alone to do what their lower nature wants.
The word "vile" means "infamous," that which is "grossly criminal, shocking, or brutal."
These are stern words that introduce homosexual activity.
A. Homosexuality enters because God gave us up.
It is very clear from Scripture that the second deadline results when God gives people
over to homosexual activity.
God's second warning to America is the unleashing of the homosexual on our society.
1) We see homosexuals in the military, "Ask not, tell not."
This is the erosion of national security, national protection, and the symbol of national strength.
2) Homosexuals in the White House.
Not to long ago I was appalled to see a picture of gays who have come out of the closet
and willing to have their picture taken.
This was published in a national newspaper for all to see.
We are getting the homosexuals in Congress, the Judiciary, the White House,
and in appointed Cabinet positions. . . Why?
Because God has given up America.
We have passed the second deadline.
The Bible says "Their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature;
and likewise also the men leaving the natural use of the women, burned in their lust one toward another;
men with men, working that which is unseemly" Rom. 1:26, 27.
B. Aids is the symbol of the second deadline.
My next point is open to debate...debate by conservative scholars.
I have an opinion, but I want you to read the Bible and determine what your opinion is.
Because of their homosexuality, God's Word says,
"Receiving in themselves that recompense of their error" Rom 1:27.
What is the recompense of their error?
I think it today AIDS is one of the manifestations of it.
Is AIDS God's judgment?
God does not judge today,
He will judge when we stand before the judgment seat and receive reward for those things that we have done.
Judgment is punishment in Hell.
AIDS is nature's consequence for breaking natural law.
If you expose yourself to pneumonia virus, you'll catch pneumonia.
If you expose yourself to a measles virus, you'll catch the measles.
If you have sex with an HIV carrier you will get AIDS.
That is natural law, and God is allowing natural law to bring the judgment of AIDS upon our nation.
As God is giving up on America, He is allowing AIDS to pass from the homosexual community
to the heterosexual community.
Because we have passed God's second deadline.
III. GOD GAVE THEM UP TO A HOMOSEXUAL CIVILIZATION. ROM. 1:28.
If America continues to ignore Romans 1, we will have a homosexual civilization.
That does not mean every person will be homosexual.
There will always be a pure Lot who lives among the sodomy of Sodom.
But notice, Lot put himself in a homosexual civilization and had to live in that civilization.
Christians, here is the result of God's third deadline.
Christians will live in a world that has a homosexual lifestyle.
Christians will live in a world that is anti-God and anti-Christian.
Christians will live in a world of persecution and martyrdom.
Christians may have to go into the closet, just as homosexuals have come out of the closet.
If you think I am just preaching, I am as serious about this matter as I have ever been.
God's third deadline is committing America to a homosexual lifestyle,
even though Christian you will not become a homosexual, you will live in a homosexual world.
A. A reprobate mind is a homosexual lifestyle.
God gave them up to a reprobate mind.
What does the word reprobate mean?
The word "reprobate" is dikaios, which also means the opposite of just.
In verse 17 of this chapter, "the just (dikaios) shall live by faith."
Now when people turn from God, their lifestyle is the opposite of God's standard.
Webster's says, "condemned strongly as unworthy, unacceptable, or evil,
to refuse to accept or morally abandon."
When God gives us to a reprobate mind, God has abandoned us.
Notice what the Scriptures say, "As they did not like to retain God in their knowledge,
"God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not natural." (v. 28)
Notice two things that come out of verse 28.
1) The cause is that they did not retain God in their knowledge, and
2) the effect, they were given over to that which is not natural.
B. What is a homosexual civilization?
A homosexual lifestyle is
a) rebellion against law,
b) rebellion against God,
c) rebellion against purity,
d) arrogantly supporting only themselves, and
e) mean spirited and vengeful.
A listing of the events in a non-natural lifestyle, i.e. a homosexual lifestyle is very graphic
from the Living Bible, Rom. 1:28-31.
1. Every kind of wickedness and sin
11. Haters of God
15. Always thinking of new ways of sinning
16. Continually being disobedient to parents
C. How America is becoming a homosexual civilization.
Let me describe the change in American's thinking towards homosexuality.
1) Illegally, America, at the beginning recognized that homosexuality was sin,
so we legislated against it.
2) Salvation - Next, we turned to soul winning because we knew that homosexuals were perverse,
but they could be saved from their sin of perversion.
3) Compassion - We know that homosexuality is terrible, but we realized we should
at least have some feeling for their right as individuals.
4) Recognition - Next, we came to recognize at least we should give them an equal right to life,
liberty, and pursuit of happiness, as other minority Americans.
5) Legal Acceptance - If America continues, they will become a recognized minority.
6) Experimentation - Many Americans will experiment with their lifestyle as recommended
by the Surgeon General, Joycelyn Elders, and there will be many Christians
and unsaved who will experiment with it.
Some will be addicted, others will find it reprehensible.
7) We become a homosexual civilization because the majority have at least experimented with it,
and they are larger than just a minority of Christians and other Americans who find it reprehensible.
D. Result of the third deadline.
The greatest judgment by God is not HIV or AIDS, but allowing the nation to
1) change its thinking about homosexuals,
2) change its desires about homosexuality, and
3) becoming a homosexual civilization.
God's three deadlines tells us that when we give in. . . He gives us up.
When you take a rattlesnake into your bosom, you will be poisoned and die.
But, a rattlesnake will not strike another rattlesnake, they are the same nature.
Right now, America is not homosexual, but one day when we no longer fear taking the homosexual
into our bosom, we will become homosexual.
They will no longer become poison to us because we have been poisoned.
When are we a homosexual nation?
Romans 1:32 says, it is when "we not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them."
If you have never really accepted Jesus as your personal Savior, would you do it right now?
Do not delay or put it off. If you would like to receive Christ by faith,
pray this simple prayer in your heart:
I acknowledge that I am a sinner.
I believe Jesus died for my sins on the cross, and rose again the third day.
I repent of my sins. By faith I receive the Lord Jesus as my Savior.
You promised to save me, and I believe You, because You are God and cannot lie.
I believe right now that the Lord Jesus is my personal Savior,
and that all my sins are forgiven through His precious blood.
I thank You, dear Lord, for saving me. In Jesus' name, Amen.
If you prayed that prayer, God heard you and saved you.
I personally want to welcome you to the family of God and rejoice with you.
(End Of Sermon)
From Dr. White: "From the information below, you can see the years of ministry
when Dr. Falwell would have preached the sermon. "God's Three Deadlines."
Today, you can also see that the sermon has come to pass.
God, help us!"
Jerry Lamon Falwell, Sr. (August 11, 1933 May 15, 2007)  was an American evangelical
Southern Baptist pastor, televangelist, and a conservative political commentator.
 He was the founding pastor of the Thomas Road Baptist Church, a megachurch in Lynchburg, Virginia.
He founded Lynchburg Christian Academy (now Liberty Christian Academy) in 1967,
Liberty University in 1971, and co-founded the Moral Majority in 1979.