EBible Fellowship Sunday Bible Study – 30-May-2010


by Robert Daniels 


One thing that I would like to talk about today is that the Bible has a lot to say about the wicked.  It is in our nature to be wicked.  None of us are righteous.  The righteousness that God demands from us, none of us have.  Not one of us can do things God’s way perfectly. 

So as we look in the Bible, God describes all of us.  It makes no difference who you are or where you are from, your education or your family heritage.  It has nothing to do with these things. 

If we look at Psalm 58, here God is describing all of us.  For us to honestly see ourselves, we have to read the Bible.  God tells us exactly what we are, and many people are offended when the Bible tells them that they are sinners and that they are wicked.  God is speaking about all of us; and yet for some people, from the moment that they see the term “wicked,” they think about a murderer or about someone who did some horrible act.  They then tend to think, “Oh, this is not talking about me, because I am a good person.” 

Did someone ever tell you this, that you are a “good person”?  No, we are not, not according to the Bible.  We can see the milk of human kindness in people and how they help their fellowman; but according to the Bible, we are not good. 

In Psalm 58, God’s Word is telling you and me what we really are.  We read in Psalm 58:1-6: 

Do ye indeed speak righteousness, O congregation? do ye judge uprightly, O ye sons of men? Yea, in heart ye work wickedness; ye weigh the violence of your hands in the earth. The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies. Their poison is like the poison of a serpent: they are like the deaf adder that stoppeth her ear; Which will not hearken to the voice of charmers, charming never so wisely. Break their teeth, O God, in their mouth: break out the great teeth of the young lions, O JEHOVAH. 

This is God’s description of all of us.  As we come into this world, God says that we are wicked from the womb.  We are born “speaking lies.”  This is God’s description of every single one of us and it is not pretty. 

Does a newborn baby speak?  Of course not; but as God is looking at the heart of a child, what does He see?  He sees a rebellious heart, a wicked person. 

So God’s description of every single one of us is that we are wicked.  We are wicked people and we deserve to be destroyed by God forevermore because we were made in the image of God.  God made us perfectly and we rebelled against Him.  It is our nature to be wicked. 

For instance, look at Ephesians 2:3.  This is our nature, which only God can change.  The only way that we can become righteous in God’s eyes is when God gives us a new heart.  In Ephesians 2:3, God is speaking about what we were before we were saved.  He says: 

Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature… 

So this is our nature. 

…and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. 

It is our nature to be wicked and we, of ourselves, cannot change this.  Maybe my sin is not as outward as someone else’s, but what is going on within my heart?  A sin that I am committing in thought is just as bad as someone else who is acting out this same thing. 

So we cannot wrap our holy rags around us and say that we are better than anyone else.  We should never do this.  It is only by God’s mercy that we do not go out and act out what is going on within our heart.  God is just restraining us. 

The remedy from a wicked heart is salvation.  God has to do that great miracle of salvation within me and give me a new heart, and then I will start doing things God’s way.  Besides this, we, of ourselves, cannot do this.  We cannot do this in a perfect way that is pleasing to God.  The only way that we do things that are pleasing to God is when He really saves us.  Besides this, we cannot do it.  This is because God demands what?  He demands perfection, and we cannot live up to this standard. 

This is why Christ came and did the work of salvation for us.  This is what the problem is; and if we look back in Psalm 58, God is putting His finger on what man’s problem is.  It is the heart.  The heart of man is wicked, and so this is what we need.  We need a new heart. 

In Psalm 58:2, it says: 

Yea, in heart… 

It is the heart.  This is the problem.  We need a new heart.  God has to save me, if He wishes to do so.  Other than this, we are hopeless.  We need a new heart because a sinful heart is going to do sinful things.  It is our nature to sin because we have a wicked heart right from birth. 

Those of us who have children, we do not have to teach our children to sin.  From the moment that you tell a child, “Do not do this,” this is what they are going to try to do because they are born “speaking lies.”  Our heart is there within us and God is the One, if He so chooses to do so, who has to give us a new heart. 

Look at Jeremiah.  This is another familiar passage.  These verses are familiar to most of us.  Do you remember what it says in Jeremiah 17:9?  He starts out: 

The heart… 

He is pointing at the heart of man, and He says: 

The heart is deceitful above all things… 

It says that our heart is deceitful above all things, and then it says: 

…and desperately wicked: who can know it? 

This is the same thing that we see in Psalm 58.  God is pointing at the heart of man.  We are wicked people and our hearts are desperately so.  Our heart has an incurable disease, spiritually speaking, that only God Himself can cure through the Word of God as we become saved. 

If you look at the world today, they are spending billions and billions of dollars in trying to cure cancer or in trying to cure heart disease.  They have the AIDS Walk and the Heart Walk, the “this walk” and the “that walk,” because all they see is the physical part of man.  But there is something far greater than this, which is our spiritual heart. 

If the Lord were to tarry a little bit longer, our physical bodies would die.  At the end of the day, we know that we would eventually die.  But there is something far greater than this spiritually, which is our heart. 

So God tells us that we do not even know how wicked we are.  Our heart is desperately wicked, and He says: 

…who can know it? 

God does.  He says in Jeremiah 17:10: 

I JEHOVAH search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings. 

God knows how wicked the heart of man is.  We do not know our own hearts nor do we know another person’s.  I cannot look at someone else’s heart, but God knows it.  God knows.  This is why we so desperately need salvation.  We desperately, desperately need salvation.  

Look at Matthew 15 where we will see Christ speaking to the scribes and Pharisees.  We read in Matthew 15:1-2: 

Then came to Jesus scribes and Pharisees, which were of Jerusalem, saying, Why do thy disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? for they wash not their hands when they eat bread. 

Can you see where their thinking was?  It was all in the physical act of washing their hands before they ate.  The traditions of their fathers were more important to them than what Christ was saying. 

It continues in Matthew 15:3 where Christ is answering them: 

But he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition? 

They were not interested in what God’s Word was saying.  They were more interested in what their elders taught.  This was where their thinking was. 

Look now at verse 19.  Christ is going to get our attention.  Once you read the whole chapter, you will see the context of what Christ is saying; but we read in Matthew 15:19-20: 

For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts… 

Do you see what the wicked heart produces?  It produces evil thoughts. 

He goes on to include: 

…murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: These are the things which defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man. 

They were more interested in the physical act of doing these things.  However, Christ is getting their attention away from these things and trying to point to what the problem really is, which is the heart of man and what comes out of it.  Out of the wicked heart of man flows iniquity and sin, which is why we so desperately need a new heart.  Our heart is desperately wicked to no end. 

As we look at society in general, we can see that sin is multiplying.  Where is this coming from?  It is not coming from the animals.  It is coming from man as we see sin multiply and multiply and multiply all over the place.  In the home, in the schools, wherever we look, we see sin and it is coming from within the heart of man.  This is why we so desperately need a new heart. 

If we look at another familiar passage in Romans 3, God is telling us what our heart naturally produces and what comes out of us.  In Romans 3:10-18, it says: 

As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps… 

This is just like what we read in Psalm 58.  An asp is a snake. 

It continues:    

…the poison of asps is under their lips: Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: Their feet are swift to shed blood: Destruction and misery are in their ways: And the way of peace have they not known: There is no fear of God before their eyes. 

This is God’s description of all of us.  This is what all of us are and it is not a pretty picture that God paints of every single one of us.  This is why we so desperately need Christ.  We desperately need a new heart because the time of salvation is coming to a close very quickly. 

Look also at Matthew 23.  As we read through the Gospels, at times we see Christ, who is God Himself, looking only at the hearts of the scribes and Pharisees.  Only God can do this and Christ is God Himself.  I cannot look at your heart and you cannot look at mine; but, here, Christ is looking at the scribes and Pharisees and putting the finger on the problem.  He is looking at their heart because He can do this.  If you read through this whole chapter, you will see this.  God is making an indictment against all of us.  Look at Matthew 23:25.  He says: 

Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. 

A lot of people can pretend and act a certain way.  They can be nice, but what is going on within their heart? 

Let us continue on.  We read in Matthew 23:26-27: 

Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres… 

Where did we read this word “sepulchres”?  We read this in Romans 3. 

We can look down our long noses at the scribes and Pharisees, “Oh, look at them,” but Christ is talking to us also.  He just told us in Romans 3 that we are a sepulcher.  We know what a sepulcher is.  It has a dead body in it.  This is what God is telling me that I am.  Here in Matthew 23:27, He is telling the Pharisees this same thing:   

…for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward… 

We live in a world that is into the outward showing.  There is nothing wrong with physical beauty—God made us all—but the world focuses on what they can see outwardly.  People can pretend to be nice or try to be nice or just be a nice person, but God is looking at the heart.  He is looking at the heart of man: 

…which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within… 

So He is looking at the heart, which is: 

…within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. 

What is going on within your heart?  This is what Christ is looking at. 

Then Matthew 23:28 says: 

Even so ye also… 

He is talking to me and to you: 

…ye also outwardly appear righteous… 

Many people are like this.  This reminds me of today.  We are living in a day where we can know a great deal about the Bible.  We can have all of this head knowledge.  We can understand all forms of doctrine and all sorts of things from the Bible.  We can quote Scripture.  We have the “Open Forum” and our Bibles and many booklets.  We can know all of these things, or we can appear to know all of these things intellectually, but the question is, “Am I born again?  Am I truly a child of God?” 

Matthew 23:28 continues: 

Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men… 

We can appear to be saved.  We do not know who is saved, but someone can appear this way. 

Then God says as He continues looking at the heart: 

…but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity. 

So this is where Christ is looking.  He is looking within at the heart of man.  What is really going on within our heart?  This is what He is looking at and why we so desperately need a new heart.  Christ already told us in the book of Jeremiah that the heart of man is “desperately wicked.”  Outwardly, we can appear one way; but, inwardly, our heart can be somewhere else. 

Then in Matthew 23:29-33, He says: 

Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous, And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets. Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets. Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers. Ye serpents… 

Is this not what Christ tells us in Psalm 58, that our mouths are full of poison? 

When I speak to others, I often explain to them that this is Christ talking to us.  Some people tend to think of Jesus as just this beautiful baby Jesus, but Christ is calling us a serpent or a snake.  In the Bible, we know that Satan is known as a serpent.  He tells us in the Bible, “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do.”  This is what we will do if we are not truly a child of God. 

So He says in Matthew 23:33: 

Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell? 

This is Christ’s indictment for all of us.  As I said earlier, we cannot be looking at this as if He is speaking only to the Pharisees.  As we read the Bible, God is speaking to all of us.  He is speaking to all of us and we can learn from this. 

Here Christ is standing in front of them and He is looking at their heart, because He knows their thoughts and the intents of their heart.  This is what God is looking at and He is, so-called, calling them out.  Outwardly, we can look a certain way; but inwardly where God is looking at, we are full of dead men’s bones and we are “whited sepulchres.” 

So each one of us really needs to examine ourselves in light of the Bible.  When God says that I am this way, then I am this way; because God tells us that He knows the secrets of our hearts.  He knows the very intent.  He knows all things.  We cannot hide anything from God.  God sees all things.  He sees every one of us and He knows whatever is going on within the heart of every single human being, all of us. 

Let us look at Psalm 50:16-17: 

But unto the wicked God saith, What hast thou to do to declare my statutes, or that thou shouldest take my covenant in thy mouth? Seeing thou hatest instruction, and castest my words behind thee. 

This is what man does.  Unsaved man does not want to hear the Word of God.  This goes back to Psalm 58.  We want to listen to “charmers, charming never so wisely.”  This is what God says about us as we come into this world.  We do not hear God’s Word.  By nature, we hate the Bible.  We should not want to hate what the Bible has to say to us. 

Many of us hand out tracts.  The moment you hand a tract to a person and they see the title of it, they step back.  This is because God’s Word judges man.  It judges us; and by nature, we do not want to hear it. 

So this is speaking of the wicked; and in Psalm 50:17, we see that he “hatest instruction.”  But God’s Word is given to us “for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.”  We had nothing to do with it. 

Then we read in Psalm 50:18: 

When thou sawest a thief… 

And Satan is known as a thief.  Someone who is bringing a false gospel is also known as a thief in the Bible because they are stealing the Word of God.  This is what evil man wants to hear.  He wants to hear a Gospel that is patterned after his flesh. 

A lot of these false gospels, if you notice, they cater to man’s flesh.  They tell mankind what they want to hear.  This is what unsaved man wants to hear.  They want to hear a gospel that is going to make them feel good.  It will be a gospel that will tell him that he is a good person and that all he needs to do is this or that to become saved.  This is what man wants to hear.  But do they want to hear the truth of the Gospel?  No. 

Psalm 50:18-19 continues: 

When thou sawest a thief, then thou consentedst with him, and hast been partaker with adulterers. Thou givest thy mouth to evil… 

Normally, what is going on in our heart comes out through our mouth, as it says here: 

Thou givest thy mouth to evil, and thy tongue frameth deceit. 

This is what comes out naturally from our rebellious and wicked heart against God. 

In Psalm 109, we will see this same thing.  Psalm 109:1-2 says: 

Hold not thy peace, O God of my praise; For the mouth of the wicked and the mouth of the deceitful are opened against me… 

Do you see what man is doing?  Our mouths are opened against God. 

…they have spoken against me with a lying tongue. 

This is what the mouth of the wicked does.  It speaks against God because we have no care for what the Bible is saying to us. 

Also turn to Proverbs 6.  There are a whole host of verses, because the Bible has a lot to say about the wicked.  These are only a few verses that deal with the wicked and what is going to happen to them in the day of judgment.  We read in Proverbs 6:12-17: 

A naughty person, a wicked man, walketh with a froward mouth. He winketh with his eyes, he speaketh with his feet, he teacheth with his fingers; Frowardness is in his heart, he deviseth mischief continually; he soweth discord. Therefore shall his calamity come suddenly; suddenly shall he be broken without remedy. These six things doth JEHOVAH hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look… 

By nature, we have a proud heart.  It continues: 

A proud look, a lying tongue… 

We all know what a “lying tongue” is. 

…and hands that shed innocent blood, 

This goes back to Romans 3.  We are “swift to shed blood,” as Romans 3 says; and out of the heart comes all kinds of murders and adulteries and fornications.  This is what comes out of our wicked heart.  This is how we are. 

Then we read in Proverbs 6:18: 

An heart… 

God is coming back to the heart in Proverbs 6:18: 

An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations… 

This is where all of these things come from.  They come out of the heart.  It continues: 

…feet that be swift in running to mischief, 

This is what comes out of our evil heart: wickedness.  It is wickedness and it is constant. 

Do you see how desperately we need a new heart, that miracle of salvation?  This is the only remedy for our rebellious ways, that rebellious nature that is in all of us.  This is why we read in Ezekiel 36 that God has to take that stony heart away from us.  He says, “I will give you an heart of flesh,” a heart of Christ; and this is only something that God can do. 

We know that salvation is a miracle.  We have to wonder why God would save anyone.  When we see His description of all of us, why would He even bother?  But, wonderfully, God is gracious and He is merciful.  Still, we just have to wonder why He would save anyone.  It just boggles the mind that He would take the time to give us the Bible, that He would take the time throughout the ages to save this one and that one.  

If we are saved, we all have a different story.  All of us were involved in all sorts of wickedness.  By God’s mercy, He saved you if you are a child of God.  Do you see how wonderful God is that He would even look at anyone and save them? 

Returning back to Proverbs 6:14, it says:  

Frowardness is in his heart, he deviseth mischief continually; he soweth discord. 

I believe that this word “frowardness” has to do with perversion or the perverted heart of man, out from which comes all manner of wickedness.  We wonder why the world is the way it is.  It is because of man’s rebellion.  What comes out of man’s heart is all sorts of ugly things.  This is what comes out of the heart of man. 

Look at Proverbs 15:1-2: 

A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. The tongue of the wise useth knowledge aright: but the mouth of fools poureth out foolishness. 

And it is coming out of the heart.  The “fools” are those who are not saved.  The heart “poureth out foolishness.”  Rubbishness comes out of the heart of unsaved man.  What is unsaved man talking about?  He is talking about the world, sports, etc.  Whatever he is speaking about, it is foolishness.  What comes out of the heart of unsaved man is utter rubbish, because he is not using his lips to glorify God.  So we have to be careful about what we talk about.  If you are a child of God, you love speaking about spiritual things. 

Have you ever spoken to someone after you just heard a Bible study that is fresh in your mind?  You want to talk to them about this study, but the conversation goes right to the world.  It goes right to the world, and yet you are trying to get them to go back to talking about some Bible verses.  But this is not the way their thoughts are.  They want to talk about the world, something else, maybe sports or clothing or something that they have done. 

Today is the Lord’s Day and we should not want to talk about worldly things.  You are trying to turn the conversation back to what you heard maybe in a Bible study or maybe something new that you have learned from the Bible.  You are trying to get them to talk about the Bible, but their thoughts are not there.  Their heart wants to talk about something else.  But for the child of God, because God has given you a new heart, your joy is to talk about spiritual things. 

A group of people can get together where they are supposed to be speaking about God’s Word, and yet their minds can be all over the place.  But for a child of God, they want to speak about spiritual things because of their new heart.  Out of this new heart that God has given them, they want to talk about spiritual things. 

Look also at Psalm 10 where God is speaking about the wicked.  We read in Psalm 10:1-2: 

Why standest thou afar off, O JEHOVAH? why hidest thou thyself in times of trouble? The wicked in his pride… 

And this is a whole other issue.  The wicked have a proud heart.  When you hear people speaking about pride in our land, they say, “Oh, be proud of yourself.”  But no; if you honestly look at yourself through the Bible, what is there to be proud of?  Pride is a root sin that is in all of us that needs to be rooted out.  Even after you become a child of God, pride will rear its ugly head in your life.  True believers have to walk very humbly before God and pray to God for mercy. 

He continues in Psalm 10:2 to say: 

The wicked in his pride doth persecute the poor: let them be taken in the devices that they have imagined. 

Then we read in Psalm 10:3: 

For the wicked boasteth of his heart’s desire… 

This is what he does.  The wicked heart is boasting in what he has done. 

Then we read in Psalm 10:4: 

The wicked… 

God is continuing to speak about the wicked: 

The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God… 

Do you see how God speaks about the wicked?  The wicked will not seek after God.  As a matter of fact, God seeks us out.  He seeks us.  We do not seek Him.  God seeks us out and He saves us.  He tells us clearly in the Bible that He came “to seek and to save that which was lost.”  So God is the One who seeks us out. 

Look at Psalm 10:6: 

He hath said in his heart, I shall not be moved… 

This is pride.  He may not consciously think this all out, but this is what he is thinking “in his heart.” 

It goes on in Psalm 10:7: 

His mouth is full of cursing and deceit and fraud… 

This goes right back to Psalm 58 [note: speaker meant to say Psalm and not Isaiah] and Romans 3.  This is what God is saying about the wicked.  If you are not saved, this is what is coming out of your heart: 

His mouth is full of cursing and deceit and fraud: under his tongue is mischief and vanity. 

God is telling us what we are really like.  We are wicked and the cure for this is salvation. 

As we know, we are living in these last days before the end and salvation is still possible.  How can it be that God would save anyone?  It boggles the mind that He would save one person.  God would be perfectly justified in sending all of us into destruction forever.  He would be perfectly just in doing this.  The more we think about this wonderful salvation that God has given to us, the more we realize that this is an amazing salvation. 

God gave us a perfect example of this.  We are becoming very familiar now with Jonah.  When Christ sent Jonah to Nineveh, God tells us what these people were like.  Look at Jonah 1:1-2: 

Now the word of JEHOVAH came unto Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness… 

It was a very wicked city.  They were no different than any of us.  God tells us what the city of Nineveh was and it was a very wicked city.  They were doing all manner of wickedness there, and here He sends this man into this wicked city with the Gospel. 

This is the answer, is it not, for wickedness, for sin problems?  The answer is the Word of God and salvation.  As you read on in Jonah 3, you will see that God saves this city. 

None of us is beyond salvation, no matter what kind of wickedness we have been in or are involved in presently.  No matter what our situation is, the grace of God is sufficient.  God can save anyone. 

People have all sorts of excuses, “Well, I did this in my past and I did that, so how could God save me?  I am a wicked person.”  But they are the perfect candidate for salvation.  God can save anyone.  No matter what a person has been involved in, God can save this person. 

God tells us in the Bible, “I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked.”  He has none whatsoever.  It is not like He is going to destroy man with a smile on His face.  No, we were made in the image of God.   

Another verse is in Ezekiel 18.  We read in Ezekiel 18:30-32: 

Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, saith the Lord JEHOVAH. Repent, and turn yourselves… 

We have to be careful with this verse.  We can stop drinking or we can stop some sin, but this does not save us.  The repentance that we need is God’s repentance.  True repentance is a gift of God. 

It continues: 

Repent, and turn yourselves from all your transgressions; so iniquity shall not be your ruin. Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel? For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord JEHOVAH: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye. 

This is the grace of God.  It is God’s mercy.  Although He says, “make you a new heart,” we know that we cannot do this.  God is the One who has to give us a new heart, but God has no pleasure in sending wicked people to hell. 

Wonderfully in our day, God is still saving a great multitude of people.  He is still saving sinners, and so we do not have any excuse, none whatsoever.  We have no excuse because, wonderfully, God gives us this privilege to cry to Him for mercy.  It may be that He might save you.  But you need to stop sinning.  That will not save you, but stop doing wickedness and cry to God for mercy.  It may be that He might save you. 

You know that you need a new heart.  God points the finger at the problem and it is our heart.  Our heart produces all sorts of wickedness.  It is in our very nature to sin against God. 

Wonderfully, though, today is still the day of salvation.  God is still saving a great multitude, and it could be me or it could be you if you are not saved.  So we come humbly before God and we plead, as we know, because time is running out.  Time is coming to an end. 

I do not know what your stand is on May 21, 2011.  This is true, but for the sake of speaking, let us just say that it is going to happen regardless of where you stand.  You get there on that day and you are left behind.  This means that May 21, 2011 is going to be the most horrible thing imaginable for you, because God will destroy the wicked.  The Bible has declared this and God is faithful to His Word.  He will destroy the wicked in that day. 

Let us stop here.