Scripture: Romans 1:18-32
The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19 since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.
21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.
24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.
26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.
28 Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. 29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. 32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them
Observation: “God gave them over” four words that should strike fear in us all, if not for His incredible grace. I read a bunch of stuff trying to really understand what this actually meant, and what I conclude is that it simply means God is withdrawing from this situation. He is saying “if you insist you want this so bad, go ahead, I won’t interfere” The answer and solution to this is very simple, in vs. 21 it says”they did not glorify Him as God or give thanks to Him”. They knew about Him, but chose to not follow Him.
click on the link below to read an interesting article on this subject.
Application: going to go in a different direction that you may expect today. This is really about being obedient to God, acknowledging him as God, giving thanks and doing as the word says. The bible tells us to pray for our leaders and respect those in authority. We just had municipal elections yesterday. So, whether you are happy with the results or not, our job right now is to hold up these men and women in prayer. Lets remember that these positions are thankless ones. They are jobs where you can never please everyone, so there will be constant scrutiny and criticism. Pray for them,.
Prayer: Thank you Lord for people willing to step up and lead. God give them wisdom and a listening ear for the people. Help them make the tough decisions, even when it’s not popular. God help them to be people of integrity and honesty. Help us to be people of integrity also as we hold them up in prayer rather than complain about them. In Jesus name, amen.