"THE MYSTERY OF INIQUITY"
I. THERE IS A CERTAIN MYSTERY ABOUT INIQUITY.
A. Why are people drawn to iniquity when the results are always negative?
1. God said, "Come now let us reason together."
2. A person seems to lose all sense of reason when he gets caught up in sin.
a. Sampson caught up in his lust for Delilah lost his common sense.
b. Dr. Lorraine Day said that the homosexual is so driven with the desire for sex that their desire for sex exceeds the desire for life.
3. Solomon in exhorting his son said, (This is my free translation)
Say to wisdom, "You are my sister; and call understanding your closest friend." That they may keep you back from strange women, from the prostitute which flatters you with her words.
For I was looking out of the window of my house one evening and I saw among the simple ones, a young man void of understanding, and as he passed by her corner there in the evening twilight, she came up to him, and propositioned him. She was a prostitute dressed in seductive attire, she was the loud brash sort,the kind you find on the streets. She is always on the prowl for a prey, you find them on almost every street corner in the big cities. So she caught him, and kissed him, and with an impudent face she said unto him, "You are my dream boy, I have been looking for you and at last I have found you. Come, go to bed with me. Let's make love all night, lets drown ourselves in sex." With her fair speech she seduced him, he was deceived by her flattery. He went after her as an ox goes to the slaughter, or as a fool is led into captivity. He won't wake up until he discovers he has contracted a venereal disease.
B. Why do we have this curiosity for that which is forbidden?
1. Somehow as Eve, we think that we might be missing out on something desirable.
2. So many people as the cat have been killed by curiosity.
C. Name for me one worthwhile pursuit that God has forbidden man to engage in.
1. The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul.
2. Why do people think that the law of God is so onerous?
D. Why do men choose evil over good?
1. Why did Adam and Eve choose the tree that would bring death over the tree that would give life?
2. Why do men today choose the path that leads to death rather than the path that leads to life?
E. I see a mystery of iniquity in the rejection of Jesus Christ.
1. This is Palm Sunday the day that the Christian Church remembers the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem riding on the donkey, according to the prophecy.
2. He had fulfilled the prophecies concerning the Messiah and is now officially presenting Himself to the nation as their Messiah.
3. When the religious leaders heard the shouts of the disciples as they hailed Him as the Messiah, they ordered Jesus to silence their blasphemy. Rather than recognize Him as the Messiah, they plotted to kill Him.
a. The prophecy of Isaiah was thus fulfilled, "He was despised and rejected by men."
b. David prophesied, He was the chief cornerstone, but He was rejected by the builders.
4. I see a mystery in the rejection of Jesus Christ by so many people today.
a. I cannot see one good reason to reject Jesus as your Savior, yet people do.
b. Jesus said the reason people reject Him is that they love darkness rather than light because their deeds are evil.
c. If you have refused to allow Jesus to be the Lord of your life, you might ask yourself the question, "Why?"
II. IN SPEAKING HERE OF THE MYSTERY OF INIQUITY, PAUL IS TALKING ABOUT A COMING WORLD RULER WHO WILL BE INIQUITY PERSONIFIED.
A. He will be Satan's counterfeit messiah.
1. In our text Paul calls him the son of perdition, the man of sin. He tells us that he opposes God.
2. John tells us in Revelation 13
that Satan gives to him his power, throne and great authority, and he opens his mouth in blasphemies against God.
3. Daniel tells us that he shall speak against God.
4. Jesus said, "I came in My Father's name and you did not receive Me, another will come in His own name, him you will receive."
B. The mystery of iniquity is found in the acceptance of this false messiah by the world that has rejected Jesus.
1. The bible tells us that even though he is a blasphemous man that the world will worship Him.
2. Jesus said, "I came in My Father's name and you did not receive Me, another will come in His own name, him you will receive."
3. Jesus is the personification of goodness, and is rejected by men. This man of sin is the personification of evil, and he is hailed.
C. Man has been designed to worship, you can not help it, it is built in. You have to worship something, if not the true God then some substitute.
1. In the law of Moses God said, "When you look up into the heavens and you see the sun, moon, and stars, and are driven to worship them."
a. Look at the Greeks who were noted for their philosophers, worshipped Venus, Jupiter, Mars, Neptune, the Moon.
2. I am always amazed at the foolish things man will worship when he refuses to worship the true and living God.
a. I see little girls worshipping Madonna.
b. I see men worshipping their sports cars.
c. I see people putting on foolish looking garb in order to worship their gods.
d. This is all a part of that mystery of iniquity that is already at work in the world today.
3. Our nation has demonstrated that righteous morals are immaterial as long as the economy is good.
D. Our world is in such a state of moral degeneracy that when this evil emissary from Satan comes on the scene, the world will be ready to worship him as the savior, despite his corrupt morals and character.
1. Daniel prophesied that he will bring prosperity, and to the world that is the most important thing.
2. Speaking of this man of sin Paul said,
[Even him], whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
E. The only way that you can be saved from being deceived by this coming world ruler is to have a love for the truth.
1. John in the book of Revelation tells us,
And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.