Romans 1:24-25 (NIV): 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.
“Therefore, God gave them over” – here we begin to see “the wrath of God” that “is being revealed” from verse 18. His wrath is revealed in the sin that is being committed, by “giving them over” to it. The penalty for their sin is the sin itself. Note: Romans 6:20 & Romans 6:18. The point is, we are bound to be slaves to something, for our nature is to follow. For we are creatures, part of the creation, created by the Creator. Our longing is to follow him but many “suppress and exchange” the truth due to pride.
“God gave them over” – The greatest penalty is to be separated from God. We get what we choose!
“in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another” – Key word: ‘Desire.’ It is by desire that the theme of our life comes to fruition. Those who desire sin will indeed sin. Those who continue to sin will continue to desire sin. For sin opens the door to more sin. It is by God’s grace that our desire becomes His desire. Or should I say: His desires become our desires. We must always remember to continue in prayer, and ask that God will continue to soften our hearts and make our desires – His desires.
“degrading of their bodies” – our bodies are of much significance, and to be treated as such and taken care of. They’re gifts, and by them our hearts and minds become affected. As Christians, our bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit. For all mankind, our bodies are the vessels of our souls. Protect your body, protect your mind, and God will protect your soul. Keep filth far away.
“they exchanged the truth about God for a lie” – Once the truth is “exchanged,” all you’re left with is falsehood. We either receive the truth, and become free from sin and obedient to righteousness. Or we exchange it for deception, and enslave ourselves to sin and rid ourselves of God.
“and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator – who is forever praised. Amen.” – Key word: Worshiped (revered). Mankind, once having exchanged the belief in the true God will inevitably worship something. To worship; revere, bend the knee, devote, and to hold high – all makes sense when the worship is for God. For He is worthy. But mankind has so often chosen to worship the creation instead – how ironic! We worship that which we believe to be worthy (and worth our time), and it is all decided by our desires. What do we desire? Money, sex, thrill, “success,” popularity, image?
So many have chosen to worship the mere creation. Whether the flesh of others – by giving into sexual impurity. Or their own self – by holding themselves as high as God, seeking thrill and satisfaction, power and recognition, popularity and security. We chose to worship the things that provide us with momentary satisfaction. Mankind, with our God-given bodies, indulge without restraint, all in the pursuit of satisfaction and fulfillment.
Mankind chooses to worship the temporal over the eternal. God, both divine and eternal, is the only name to be lifted above every other name, the only One who is worthy to be “worshiped and served.” Why do we, who know the truth, ever dare to worship and serve the created things?
Feel free to use the discussion questions below for a group Bible study and if you would like, the commentary above to help facilitate the discussion.
- “Therefore” <– what is the “therefore” there for?
- What does it mean for God to “give them over?”
- Why is sexual impurity referred to as a “degrading of the body?”
- What does it mean to “exchange the truth?” What are some areas in our culture or our life where we “exchange the truth?”
- What can truth be exchanged for?
- What does it mean to “worship & serve created things?”