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Sermon #3029


A Sermon on Romans 1:18


Romans 1:18 ESV KJV
For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. (ESV)

Sermon Description

The wrath of God explained in Romans 1:18 is aimed at everyone who continues in sin. In this sermon titled “Ungodliness,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd- Jones outlines two key descriptions of sin from this verse: ungodliness and unrighteousness. One should be careful that these descriptions are always associated in this order and never mentioned apart. Ungodliness convicts all humans of sin because it shows how far they fall from the measure of God. Unrighteousness furthers guilt, showing how even in relationship with God and others, all have failed immensely and stand condemned. Paul warns that all will one day be judged on their response and relationship with God. The social gospel has no answer to God’s wrath and nothing apart from Christ can reconcile sinners to God. Only hell awaits those who continue in transgressions, broken in their relationship with God, and awaiting His punishment. Yet because of Jesus Christ, there is hope for all who surrender and repent of sin.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. The apostle Paul is explaining why he is eager to preach the gospel. It is because of the greatness and character of the gospel, but also because the wrath of God has been revealed against all ungodliness and unrighteousness.
  2. There are difficulties people have with the doctrine of God's wrath, but it is taught throughout Scripture. God's wrath is revealed as much as His righteousness.
  3. God's wrath is revealed against ungodliness and unrighteousness. This is a comprehensive statement about the nature of sin and its inexcusability.
  4. Ungodliness refers to our relationship with God. Any failure to live for God's glory is ungodliness. Righteousness refers to our relationships with other people. Any failure in our conduct towards others is unrighteousness.
  5. Ungodliness and unrighteousness must always be taken together, but ungodliness comes first. Our relationship with God is primary.
  6. The real essence of sin is ungodliness - failing to live for God's glory. This is what makes sin truly sinful.
  7. Ungodliness was the first sin of Adam and Eve. They questioned God before disobeying His command.
  8. Unrighteousness only becomes possible because of ungodliness. If our relationship with God is right, our conduct will be right. Ungodliness leads to unrighteous acts.
  9. The only way to convict all people of sin is to focus on ungodliness. Many think they are not sinners because they have not committed certain unrighteous acts. But all have sinned by failing to live for God's glory.
  10. It is sinful and insulting to God to believe righteousness is possible apart from Him. Morality comes from godliness, not the other way around.
  11. Our relationship with God is the primary matter on which we will be judged. Our works follow from this relationship.
  12. The world's problems stem from separating godliness and righteousness - being religious without truly knowing God. Some want the benefits of religion without commitment to God.
  13. The world today proves you cannot have righteousness without godliness. Immorality abounds because people thought they could have Christian conduct without knowing God.
  14. Even the church is not free from separating godliness and righteousness. Focusing on man instead of God, being subjective instead of reverent before God, leads to a lack of true joy and praise.
  15. There is no true evangelism without putting godliness first. The primary purpose is bringing people into a right relationship with God. We must start here, not with benefits or experiences.

The Book of Romans

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.