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Enemies of the Cross

TEXTPhil. 3:18

INTRODUCTION:

A.      THE CROSS REPRESENTS FREEDOM FROM DEATH AND SIN.

B.      IT HAS ITS ENEMIES - THOSE WHO OPPOSE ITS MESSAGE.

C.      JESUS' DISCIPLES MUST DEFEND THE CROSS.

          1.       Not by brute force - Peter( John 18:11 ).

          2.       Our warfare is not carnal( John 18:36;  Eph. 6:12 ).

I.      THE CROSS HAD ENEMIES IN PAUL'S DAY.

A.      JUDAIZING TEACHERS( Acts 15:1;  Gal. 3:1-3;  5:1-4 ).

B.      THE JEWS THEMSELVES.

C.      SOME DENIED THE BASICS( 1 Cor. 15:12;  1 John 4:2-3 ).

D.      WORLDLINESS( Phil. 3:18-19 ).

II.     THE CROSS HAS ENEMIES TODAY.

A.      PAGANISM.  Eastern religions, mysticism, idols, angel & devil worship, horoscope.

          1.       Salvation thru the cross depends on allegiance to one God( Eph. 4:4-6 ).

          2.       Idolatry is always condemned( Gal. 5:19-21;  1 Cor. 10:14;  1 John 5:21 ).

          3.       God will not allow such in his presence( Rom. 1:21-25;  Rev. 21:8 ).

          4.       Bondage to non-existent masters( Gal. 4:8;  Acts 19:26;  1 Cor. 8:4 ).

B.      HUMAN PHILOSOPHY.  New morality, evolution, humanism, modernism.

          1.       Stands in opposition to teachings of Christ( Col. 2:8 ).

          2.       In opposition to true knowledge of God and his will( 1 Cor 1:20-25 ).

          3.       Called ignorance by Paul( Eph. 4:17-19 ).

          4.       Where has the "Age of Reason" left us?( Matt. 9:36 ).

C.      RELIGIOUS DIVISION.  Denominations, sects in the church, Unity in Diversity.

          1.       Jesus prayed for unity( John 17:20-21 ).  Why?

          2.       1 Cor. 1:10-13.

          3.       Why division?  How can we guard against it?( 1 Cor. 4:6 ).

          4.       Stern warning( Matt. 15:9;  2 John 9 ).

D.      SCHISMS AND FACTIONS.

          1.       These are not desired among God's people( 1 Cor. 12:25 ).

          2.       Nothing can defeat the cross faster than an inside job.

          3.       Such can only cause us to devour one another( Gal. 5:15 ).

          4.       They will certainly cause our worship to be vain( 1 Cor. 11:17-30 ).

          5.       Eph. 4:1-3.

E.      HYPOCRISY IN THE CHURCH.

          1.       Our lives must be worthy of that which we profess( Phil 1:27 ).

          2.       Do we practice what we preach?( Rom. 2:21-24 ).

          3.       The language of Jesus( Matt. 23:27 ).

CONCLUSION:

A.      POGO:  "We have met the enemy and he is us."

B.      WHAT WEAPON DO WE USE?( Eph. 6:17 ).