Have We Been “Given Over?”
In our country, have we been “given over?” Romans 1:21-32 mentions the following (in black below) and I’ve made bold certain portions for emphasis, and put my own thoughts and sources in italics.
21 Because when they knew and recognized Him as God, they did not honor and glorify Him as God or give Him thanks. But instead they became futile and [c]godless in their thinking [with vain imaginings, foolish reasoning, and stupid speculations] and their senseless minds were darkened.
These are not people in a “far away” land, these are people who “knew and recognized Him as God.”
22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools [professing to be smart, they made simpletons of themselves].
There is evidence of this in the teaching in every major university in our country.
23 And by them the glory and majesty and excellence of the immortal God were exchanged for and represented by images, resembling mortal man and birds and beasts and reptiles.
Self-worship is idolatry.
24 Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their [own] hearts to sexual impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves [abandoning them to the degrading power of sin],
This reminds me of a parent who continues to tell their children that the hot stove will burn them, and finally, after many attempts to scold, discipline and remove the child from the hazard, the rebellious child once more goes toward the stove and the loving parent says, “fine…if you want to rebel so bad, then get burned. This may be the only way for you to learn my truth.”
25 Because they exchanged the truth of God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, Who is blessed forever! Amen (so be it).
Yes, self-worshipers, self-serving, and self-investing. There are many lies that are being exchanged for God’s truth. May we each pray and ask God to reveal if there are any in our own lives. One lie is hedonism:
1.-the doctrine that pleasure or happiness is the highest good.
2.-devotion to pleasure as a way of life
26 For this reason God gave them over and abandoned them to vile affections and degrading passions. For their women exchanged their natural function for an unnatural and abnormal one…
This article is one of many that is an example of this point:
27 And the men also turned from natural relations with women and were set ablaze (burning out, consumed) with lust for one another—men committing shameful acts with men and suffering in their own [a]bodies and personalities the inevitable consequences and penalty of their wrong-doing and going astray, which was [their] fitting retribution.
It is difficult to find primetime television shows that do not glorify this. http://www.charismanews.com/opinion/34273-gay-agenda-makes-not-so-subtle-inroads-into-primetime-tv
28 And so, since they did not see fit to acknowledge God or approve of Him or consider Him worth the knowing, God gave them over to a base and condemned mind to do things not proper or decent but loathsome,
Hence the taking God’s name out of nearly every area of teaching, military and public space.
29 Until they were filled (permeated and saturated) with every kind of unrighteousness, iniquity, grasping and covetous greed, and malice. [They were] full of envy and jealousy, murder, strife, deceit and treachery, ill will and cruel ways. [They were] secret backbiters and gossipers,
30 Slanderers, hateful to and hating God, full of insolence, arrogance, [and] boasting; inventors of new forms of evil, disobedient and undutiful to parents.
It’s interesting to me that the people who are being described here are not saying that God doesn’t exist. They know He exists, and choose to hate Him.
31 [They were] without understanding, conscienceless and faithless, heartless and loveless [and] merciless.
This verse should scare those who don’t like calling sin; sin. Many in our society prefer to not confront sin: Saying to themselves, “As long as it doesn’t hurt me, then, who am I to judge?” We must recognize there will be a point at which people are without conscience. When we repeat what the Judge has already said, we are not judging; we are teaching, sharing, educating and honoring God; He is our Judge and has judged, and has determined these sinful ways to be unrighteous.
32 Though they are fully aware of God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve to die, they not only do them themselves but approve and applaud others who practice them
Notice that God says these people are “fully aware,” not partially aware, or somewhat aware, no, they are “fully aware” of God’s righteous decree! If this happens to those who are “fully aware” of God’s righteous decree, imagine the state of those who are not.
These people are engaging in and applauding others who are also practicing sinful ways! I feel like we are all watching this unfold before our eyes. These are not people of some far away land, but are our neighbors and loved ones. May we be found faithful to put on the ‘full armor of God’, and to pray on all occasions and for all of those who know Him and yet deny Him, while standing firm, knowing that the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but are powerful in bringing down strongholds.
So I ask again, in our country have we been “given over” by God? Share your thoughts with us.