Acts 17 Athens Showing the Difference

Acts 17:16-34 –Showing The Difference –

  • Intro to Topic:
    • Ex: Great Speeches… can be written on a business card… simple… direct…
    • >>>Paul’s great speech… Athens…
    • What would you write? You have 10 verses… now answer the pagan
    • Goal: That you’d be able to do so…
    • Text:
      • Ex: Perfect storm… planets aligned… the great speech…
      • 16, The great theologian… provoked, with time on his hands.
      • 19, The intellectual center of the pagan world…
      • 20ff, The Simplicity of the Speech- cuts to the bone…
      • 33-34, the effect in the hearers… sneering and joining in spite of sneering!
      • >>>The great speech still applies today…
      • Ex: able to demolish houses with little effort and few tools by knowing the weak spots..
        • >>Paul knows the pagan weak-spot is theology!
        • Intro to the Point:
          • FCF: Timid b/c playing on the enemies turf… their weaknesses are not exposed…
          • Thesis: The Gospel answers basic human questions!!!
          • Point: have confident conversations with unbelievers…
          • Ex: Strike at their weak-spots…
          • Ex: Luther… trimming leaves versus cutting the trunk… moral behavior versus theology
          • Need:
            • b/c the world does not know God, does not believe responsible to him…
            • b/c : This philosophy still holds today…
              • Naturalism and divinization two sides of same coin (this life all there is)
      • b/c: People think their views are objective irrefutable, and unassailable, science
      • b/c: fragmented today between science and philosophy…
      • b/c Usually we speak to the simple issues, but now speak to the great depths Christianity answers!
      • >>>Learn to strike at the root, weak spot, and demolish the whole house!
      • Define the Point:
        • >>>Learn from Paul… provoked and planned to speak… how…???
        • 22-26, Contrast– Paul showed the difference between two worldviews
        • 27-29, Confront– he confronts with the truth of responsibility to God and sin’s fair judgment
        • 30-32, Call– to Repentance & Faith
        • Perspective: value of this approach
          • Show the difference— gets the word out… confronts with truth… does not play the silly game of “Well we basically believe the same thing…”
          • Application
            • Ex: Ecclesiastes… (1-10) contrasts life under sun v. under heaven… (11) confronts… know that at the end of the age you’ll stand before God…  (12) Calls “fear God and give him glory…”
            • Ex: Romans 1:18-32… same procedure.. confronts with theology of creation, responsibility… and call to repent and believe…
            • Conclusion:
              • Ex: The great speeches
              • Q: What would you write???  
              • How would you answer the world?
              • >>>Simply show the difference, confront with their responsibility…
                • Cal them to the Gospel…
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