Romans: “The Gospel of Jesus Christ: Hear It! Believe It! Live It!”
“You can’t HANDLE the truth!!!” is an iconic line from a popular movie from years ago. It became an instant classic, and even now takes the minds of those who are familiar with it back to that moment in the courtroom when the witness on the stand was trying desperately to avoid being exposed by the truth. According to Paul’s assessment of people in Romans 1:18, there are a lot of people who, like the witness in the movie, are attempting to “suppress the truth” about God and about themselves. It is said that we need to look for the “good” in people, and during times of tragedy, as more people seem to reach out to help others, some will say “it restores my faith in humanity.” Such “faith,” however, is often short-lived. As the Spirit of God restrains evil and the influence of Biblical wisdom guides believers, we still live in one of the best places on planet earth … BUT … the truth of the condition of all people, apart from the amazing grace of God, reveals the cause of all the “ills” of our society and of every society, culture, people group and nation on the earth: human depravity!! It is only in hearing the truth about their condition that people will be moved by the Spirit to seek out the one and only cure … a cure found only in the Gospel of Jesus Christ! As pastors and other Christian teachers and leaders and churches attempt to build people up in order to make them feel better about themselves, Paul prepares the way for the Gospel by doing the exact opposite! He tells the truth!! He explains that God’s standard of righteousness is beyond what any human being can attain. Not one person will be declared innocent in God’s sight by being “good” … not one! Only the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth will prepare the soil of the heart for the good news of the Gospel. It’s up to those who know the truth to proclaim the truth, to expose the lies, and to lead people to Jesus!!