God is holy. He neither treasures sins nor sinners. He can do anything to make his children holy and He did. God sent his only begotten son, Jesus to the sinful world for the remission of our sins. ( John 3:16).
He said in 1 Peter 1 verses 15 to 16,
“But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.”
God cannot ask us to be what He has not empowered us to be. Devil preaches his version of the sermon to the people, saying no one can live without sin. This is one of the lies of the devil. Every child of God can live a godly life.
God said in 2 Timothy 2 verse 19,
“Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity.”
Paul knows how important it is to live a righteous life and that is why He did not plan to send this message to the Romans by letter. He intended to go there himself and preach the gospel to them but was hindered according to him.
In his letter to the people of Rome, he revealed God’s wrath on unrighteousness and mentioned the cure which is salvation.
The righteousness of God is disclosed to his people through salvation. ( Romans 1 verses 17 to 18).
Who wrote Romans 1:18-32 and when was it written?
Romans 1:18-32 was written by Apostle Paul. It was written when he was in Corinth around 55 to 57 AD.
What is the context of Romans 1:18-32?
The context of Romans 1:18-32 talks about God’s wrath on unrighteousness.
These verses strictly addressed God’s position about the unrighteousness of people. God‘s anger is released to every form of ungodliness. Anyone that suppresses the truth is an enemy of God.
“For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them.”
( Romans 1:18-19)
According to Paul, this message is directed to the children of God. Those who know the truth but refuse to do so and rather go in their foolish ways. They did not glorify Him as God, nor were they thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their senseless hearts and their foolish hearts were darkened thereby choosing to bow to another God.
Romans 1 verses 22 to 23,
“Professing to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.”
These are very wicked and godly people but with ungodly behaviour. They manipulate the word of God for their selfish interest, exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, therefore God gave them up to vile passions.
According to Paul, suppression of the truth is a manner of unrighteousness, and sinfulness of man. Anyone that rejects the truth is vulnerable to serve other gods and of course, will not see anything wrong in sin. That is where you see shameless acts of some women exchanging natural use for what is against nature, dishonoring of their bodies.
Likewise, also some men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another. They forgot they are meant to be a replica of the divine nature of God and not their corrupt human nature.
Apostle Paul further explained the consequence of replacing the living God with another god. God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting.
Such people will be filled with all manner of immoralities, being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful.
He ended the message with the due penalty for those that fall into this category. Any believer that knows the truth but drifts away from the truth deserves death. In the same vein, anyone that approves of those who derail from the truth deserves the same death penalty.
What is the message of Romans 1:18-32?
The message of Romans 1:18-32 warns believers to hold on to their faith.
This message was written to mature Christians in Rome. God does not share his reverence with anyone, neither does he share his glory. We serve a jealous God.
He said clearly in Exodus 20 verses 3 to 5,
“You shall have no other gods before Me. You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me”
A lot of Christians understand the gospel but because of the lust of the world, the lusts of their hearts, they neglect the truth, some even hang on to what they term the new generation truth, they interpreted the scriptures in a way that suits them, not exactly what the word of the Lord says. There is no old truth, and no new truth, truth is truth.
With this their pervert ways, they are misleading the baby believers who do not have in-depth religious knowledge of God or those that are not yet saved. This message is a warning letter to them.
Joshua was very clear about this. Joshua 24 verse 15,
“And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of he River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
God is saying, I will turn my back on you, if you turn your back on me. Then you begin to see believers wallowing in sins with delight. The end thereof is death.
“Their sorrows shall be multiplied who hasten after another god; Their drink offerings of blood I will not offer, Nor take up their names on my lips.”
(Psalm 16 verse 4)
Remember those who serve the lord shall not lack any good things.
What are the triggers of God’s wrath among the people today?
One may ask the question. Does God get angry? And why should he?
The answer is very simple and clear. God gets angry for cogent reasons. His anger is different from ours with clear distinctions. Men get angry by emotions but God’s anger is triggered by the following attitudes of men.
Neglecting God’s Glory
The primary reason for our creation is to give glory to God. God does not want anything to tamper with this attitude from men. He created men to give glory and honour to his name continually.
“I will say to the north, ‘Give them up!’ And to the south, ‘Do not keep them back!’ Bring My sons from afar, And My daughters from the ends of the earth— Everyone who is called by My name, Whom I have created for My glory; I have formed him, yes, I have made him.”
( Isaiah 43 verses 6 to 7)
This is what we saw in the message of Paul to the Romans in Romans 1.
God releases his anger to anyone that fails to acknowledge him as their God or be thankful unto him but rather changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things. ( worship of idols). These bad people are referred to as fools by God.
The wrath of God is extended when we pray to him. Jesus made it clear when he taught his disciples how to pray in Matthew 6. We must begin our prayers by giving glory to God.
“In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name.
Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread.” (Matthew 6 verses 9 to 11)
Anyone that cannot give glory and honour into his name is not acceptable by him. Such mortal human beings cannot receive anything from God. It is only after you have worshipped him that you can ask him for anything ( Give us this day, our daily bread must come after Hallowed be thy name; Your kingdom come.
Lastly, even if we have received from him and we fail to give glory, God releases his anger to curse the blessing.
“And now, O priests, this commandment is for you. If you will not hear, and if you will not take it to heart, To give glory to My name,” Says the Lord of hosts, “I will send a curse upon you, And I will curse your blessings. Yes, I have cursed them already, Because you do not take it to heart.”
(Malachi 2 verses 1 and 2)
Touching His Elect
We are the apple of God’s eye. Anything that touches us touches God.
Moses in his song mentioned in Deuteronomy 32 verses 10 to 12,
“He found him in a desert land and in the wasteland, a howling wilderness;
He encircled him, He instructed him, He kept him as the apple of His eye.
As an eagle stirs up its nest, Hovers over its young, Spreading out its wings, taking them up, Carrying them on its wings, So the Lord alone led him,
And there was no foreign god with him.”
The eyes of the Lord behold the righteous, but He hates the wicked, and the one who loves violence in his anger He will rain coals; fire and brimstone, and a burning wind upon the wicked.
God will always defend his elects. His wrath is discharged upon the enemies of the righteous. He can do anything to save his children even to the point of death.
“My defence is of God, Who saves the upright in heart. God is a just judge,
And God is angry with the wicked every day. If he does not turn back,
He will sharpen His sword; He bends His bow and makes it ready. He also prepares for Himself instruments of death; He makes His arrows into fiery shafts.”
(Psalms 7 verses 10 to 13)
The LORD examines the righteous, but the wicked, those who love violence, he hates with a passion.
Disobedience to God’s commandments is another trigger of his anger toward his people. Israelites’ exit from Egypt was based on serving God. God said repeatedly to Pharaoh through his servant Moses, ”Let my people go that they may serve me.” ( Exodus 4:23, 5:1, 7:16, 8:1, 9:1)
God deliver them from Egypt so they may serve him. He therefore gave them the commandments to serve in Deuteronomy 28 verses 1 to 2,
“Now it shall come to pass, if you diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God, to observe carefully all His commandments which I command you today, that the Lord your God will set you high above all nations of the earth. And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the Lord your God:”
The majority of believers ran to God when they need God but as soon they are out of their predicaments, they quickly forget. Some have made several vows and promises ( If only you can deliver me from this; I will serve you all the days of my life ).
The Israelites were willing and ready to serve God when they were about to leave Egypt but God saw their attitudes after they left, therefore made it a commandment with blessings and curses.
The following verses 3 to 14 list all the blessings that followed those that will subscribe diligently and acceptably to this commandment of service. This does not end as God put curses for those that will do otherwise in verses 15 to 68.
One way God’s anger is provoked is to bring back the affliction to those that disobey his commitments. The curses in Deuteronomy 28 were concluded with God saying, He will send them back to Egypt if they refuse to obey the commandment to serve Him.
“And the Lord will take you back to Egypt in ships, by the way of which I said to you, ‘You shall never see it again.’ And there you shall be offered for sale to your enemies as male and female slaves, but no one will buy you.”
(Deuteronomy 28 verse 68)
Specific Grace for Churches in the New Testament and the world today?
God bestowed specific grace on all churches of the new testament. This forms the basis of their strength which impact their members and the entire nation. Apostle Paul also mentioned the exceptional faith of the Roman churches in Romans 1 verses 8 to 12.
The giving grace was conferred on the Macedonian churches while the churches in Judea were known for their uncommon grace to overcome temptations and persecution.
Churches in Rome
These churches are known as the epitome of faith in the new testament. No other church contends with their level of faith.
Paul mentioned in verse 8 of Romans 1,
“First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world.”
He expressed his desire to visit them in honour of their faith and to impart to them some spiritual gift, so they can be rooted in Christ. This is not a coincidence looking at the history of the Roman churches. The early Roman churches were predominantly dominated and led by Jewish disciples of Jesus in the early days.
It got to a point where the people were unbigoted from other religious groups, in other words, they entertained freedom of religion as long as you don’t cause conflicts with other religious bodies. This later became a problem for the Christians and Jews in Rome as they began to experience persecution.
The Roman Emperor Claudius threw out all Jews from the city of Rome in 49 A.D. This decree lasted until his death five years later.
Churches in Macedonia
God endues churches in Macedonia with special giving grace. Their generosity is of reference for every other church in the new testament even to the churches of today. There were giving with joy from the bottom of their heart. It was not because they have much but because of their kindness.
They were even referred to as poor with trials and afflictions but out of their liberality and willingness to give, they kept giving.
Paul wrote to the Corinthians, referencing their unmatchable giving style.
2 Corinthians 8 verses 2 to 3
“that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded in the riches of their liberality. For I bear witness that according to their ability, yes, and beyond their ability, they were freely willing,”
The Macedonian churches first gave themselves to the Lord, and then to the Apostles. They did this following the example of Jesus.
“For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich.”
(2 Corinthians 8 verse 9)
The kingdom of God is their focus. Giving is not measured by volume but by quality. For if there is first a willing mind, it is accepted according to what one has, and not according to what he does not have.
The Macedonian churches give everything including their resources, time, energy, and everything God has blessed them with.
Churches in Judea
Judea churches were imparted with unusual grace to overcome temptations and persecutions. Churches in Jerusalem, a city in Judea suffered great persecution. Trials and punishments from Judea are a result of the expansion of the gospel. It is simply resistance to the gospel of Christ.
The last statement by Jesus before ascending to heaven gave insight into what should be expected from Judea. Among the list of where Jesus asked for the gospel to be preached, Jerusalem is the first. I am not surprised by what the Apostles suffered.
Acts 1 verse 8,
“But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
They were threatened to stop preaching in the name of Jesus. The Apostles stood their ground.
Acts 4 verses 18 to 21,
“So they called them and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John answered and said to them, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God, you judge. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard. So when they had further threatened them, they let them go, finding no way of punishing them, because of the people, since they all glorified God for what had been done.”
They were also sent to prison until finally one of them was stoned to death. (Act 7 verse 58)
Paul in his letter to the Thessalonians made mention of the undying passion of the Judea churches,
“For you, brethren, became imitators of the churches of God which are in Judea in Christ Jesus. For you also suffered the same things from your own countrymen, just as they did from the Judeans, who killed both the Lord Jesus and their own prophets, and have persecuted us; and they do not please God and are contrary to all men,”
( 1 Thessalonians 2 verse 14 to 15)
They remained faithful and dedicated throughout their troubled history.
Even when Paul returned there three years after, they glorified God to see him in a new fashion.
“And I was unknown by face to the churches of Judea which were in Christ. But they were hearing only, “He who formerly persecuted us now preaches the faith which he once tried to destroy. And they glorified God in me.” (Galatians 1 verse 22 to 24)
What is Romans 1:18-32 prayer?
Heavenly Father, thank you for the salvation of my soul. Sanctify me by your truth and let your word dwell richly in my heart. May I continue to be the doer of your word and not only the hearer in Jesus’ name. AMEN
The word of God is the truth. Any word that stands against the word of God is lies from the pit of hell. Let God be truth and let any mortal man be a liar.
Paul speaking in 2 Corinthians 13 verse 8 to 10,
“For we can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth. For we are glad when we are weak and you are strong. And this also we pray, that you may be made complete. Therefore I write these things being absent, lest being present I should use sharpness, according to the authority which the Lord has given me for edification and not for destruction.”
How then can we stand in the truth we don’t know? Believers in our human race have the responsibility to feed themselves on the word of truth. This is a great way to build our faith. What you don’t feed tends to die. Continuous study of the word of God is a necessity if we want to stand firm in our faith.
2 Timothy 2 verses 15 to 16, King James Version
“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness.”
The entrance of the word of God gives light. It gives understanding to the simple. What association does darkness have with light? Remain lighted, the devil will flee.