October 4, 2020

Unknown god: The god of Pleasure
October 04, 2020
Pastor Jonathan Falwell


What is one thing that you love doing, that you can do alone? Has it ever gotten you into a situation that was comical or catastrophic?


We are in the second week of the new series, looking for “gods” that may be in our lives—though we may be unaware that we’ve placed them above our love for God. Paul had spent time in Athens, teaching men who had no idea there is one true living God, while worshiping gods of every created or imagined thing. Perhaps with that heathen nation in mind, he wrote 2 Timothy, warning Timothy to keep his life clean from the stains of the ungodly world around him, an admonition we all need to heed.

Key Verse: 2 Timothy 3:1-5: But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come. For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good. traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away.

Focal Passage: 2 Timothy 3:1-5

Lovers of Themselves

  • Read 2 Tim. 3:1-2a. When did the “last days” begin? Are we in them now as well? How long will they last? Explain why we are in perilous times?
  • What is involved in being a lover of yourself? How does one fall in love with themselves?
  • What is God’s plan for all of mankind? How does loving oneself turn God’s plan upside down?
  • Read Matt. 22:37-39. How does this passage illustrate God’s plan?
  • If one is a lover of self, how do they treat those around them? How do they see themselves in relation to others? Does life become “all about me”?

The result of messing up God’s plan

  • Read 2 Tim. 3:2b-4a. Why is there a natural progression between loving oneself in the sense Paul means, to being a lover of money?
  • What happens when you become a lover of money? Read 1 Tim. 6:10. How would a person live who has no limits to his wealth?
  • How does it feel to have a friend or acquaintance who is constantly telling of something their wealth enables them to do? Basically, what are they doing? What comes after boasting? What are some things the Bible says about pride?
  • What is the first thing that comes to mind when you hear “blasphemy”? Read Exo. 20:7 and Psa. 139:20. Why do Christians spend their days constantly taking God’s name in vain, never realizing they are sinning? What if we said, “Oh, my John!!” or “Oh, my Linda!!” The world exclaims OMG without ceasing—but why do Christians? Do you do this? How can you stop?
  • As Paul lists the next several sins, (go back to focal passage) where do we see these manifest? If they are in our children or grandchildren, what can we do? Are we afraid to call them to upbraid them, lest we ruin a relationship? If no one interferes, where will they eventually spend eternity?

A false worship

  • Read 2 Tim. 3:4b-5. Do you know someone who lives on the ragged edge of pleasure? What need is he/she trying to fill?
  • Read Eccl. 2:9-11. How did Solomon sum up his life? How did he die?
  • Read James 4:1-10. What did James tell us we need to put first? Yet he says the source of our unhappiness begins with what type of living?
  • For those we know whose life is filled with the list Paul gives to Timothy, what does Paul tell him (or us) to do, if they don’t change their lifestyle?
  • Are you strong enough to distance yourself from those you love whose life is listed in the focal passage?
  • How can you put God first in your life, every day, in every way? Read Eccl. 12:13-14.


The passage in 2 Timothy 3 gives a clear picture of those whose love for themselves leads to acquiring money. Their love for money—making it as well as spending it—often leads them to brag about the amazing or pleasurable things it allows them to do. Their life becomes filled with pride at what they’ve accomplished,  and self-sufficiency moves in, blaspheming the need for God to be in their lives. They may continue the downward spiral by preferring to place parents in nursing homes so they can carry on with their pleasure-filled lives, or it may skip to the next generation: children quickly pick up on the lack of personal love the parent has for them, and they themselves will give their own lives over to the sins of personal pleasure, spending the money that is abundant, trying to fill the need for love with a hate that spirals them down further. What a tragedy! Lives that could have been lived for Christ, lived for themselves and their own pleasure.

Searching out and repenting of sins that are hiding deep in our own flesh is a time-consuming, soul-baring job. But if you truly wish to be sold out to God, you will take each of these demonic evils and see that none of them are lurking in the depths of your soul. If you find one, beg God to clean you, and make you ‘whiter than snow.’ Follow 1 John 1:9, “if you confess your sins, He is faithful and just to forgive you, and cleanse you from all unrighteousness!”