In Romans 1:18-32 we see the gospel exposes dark broken layers in our world, and in our soul. Doesn’t that sound fun?
Honestly, haven’t you wondered, “Why is our world so messed up?” Why do we treat each other this way? Why do we say these hurtful things to one another?
Why do we not only see brokenness in our world, but if we are honest, we see brokenness in our lives as well?
We are all layered with arrogance, greed, anger, jealousy, and Scripture is going to help us see the reason we see this brokenness in our world and in our soul is ultimately because we have a broken relationship with the God of Scripture.
Romans 1:18, “18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness”
- Humanity suppresses the knowledge of God.
- The word “suppress” means “humanity holds back the knowledge of God.” It means humanity literally “pushes the knowledge of God out of our lives.”
Romans 1:19-20, “19 because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.”
- Humanity suppresses the knowledge of God revealed in creation.
- It is as though humanity sees the complexity of muscle tissue running through the human anatomy, the expanse of stars, planets, and galaxies, the beauty of mountains, land and sea, and concludes, “Oh, obviously those detailed, intelligently designed beautiful things spontaneously sprung into existence.”
Romans 1:21, “21 For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened.”
- Humanity isn’t ignorant of the knowledge of God. No, deep in our soul we know there is a divine creator, but Scripture teaches us that humanity just isn’t impressed with the knowledge of God.
- There is external evidence for His glory in creation (vs. 19-20) and there is internal evidence for His glory in our conscience (vs. 21), but instead all of humanity simply “suppresses the knowledge of God.”
Romans 1:22-25, “Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures. 24 Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them. 25 For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.”
- In verse 23 we see humanity exchanging the knowledge of God for something else to take His place. Biblically this is called idolatry!
- Idolatry is anything that takes the place that rightfully belongs to the God of Scripture.”
- This means our children can become an idol. Our career can become an idol. It is anything or anyone or any idea in our life that brings out our inner “Gollum, precious!” Religious activity can become an idol. Politics can become an idol. Caring for the environment can be an idol. Working out and eating healthy can become an idol.
- It is because every human being throughout history is created in the image of God (Genesis 1), and created to worship God (Genesis 2), and when we “suppress the knowledge of God (vs.18-21)” we don’t just stay neutral, we exchange (vs. 23, 25).
Romans 1:26-27, “26 For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.”