Thursday, December 12, 2013

Advent Archive: Romans 1:18-23

In Romans 1:18-23, Paul has a two-fold perspective that he wants to introduce. He starts this perspective with “God reveals his wrath to all of those who are ungodly and unrighteous, who have the truth but live in unrighteousness.” He then moves into v.19 and 20 with “God has shown Himself to them, so that they will worship Him for His greatness and power. But they don’t.” He goes on to say in verse 21-23 rather, “Instead of worshipping God, they find transient, fleeting things to worship. As a matter of fact, they get rocks and carve little idols out of them and then worship the idols that they made with their own hands.”
Do you see the two-fold perspective? They know to worship God because He unmistakably reveals Himself to them, but they don’t. Instead they worship everything and anything but Him. They find little things in their lives to worship instead of God. When they should be “WOW!-ed” by the magnificent all-powerful, star-making, ocean-pouring, mountain-forming God, they instead sit and oogle over, and worship self-made little rocks in their own hands. The two-fold perspective is this: 1) they have the truth, 2) but they don’t act on it.
What an indictment against those Paul was talking about here in Romans 1:18-23. However, we are lying to ourselves if we try to say that we don’t do the exact same thing that these ungodly and unrighteous people did. When we should be searching after God and worshipping Him, we find anything else to worship instead. When His Spirit calls us to prayer or to meditate in scripture, we find any other thing to occupy our time. When we could worship the great God of the universe who made everything by just talking, instead we devote our time and energy to Facebook and X-box. Oh, that God would save us from the indictment of Paul and the pointless worship of menial things.

Food for Thought: What are the two steps to disobeying God like these people did in Romans 1:18-23? In what ways have you disobeyed God like this?