Empty Cross Ministries
February 13, 2021
Daily Devotion in Romans 1
When God Gets “FED UP”!
A sad discourse of the damage done by sin is detailed in Romans 1. Paul addressed the people that “… knew God …” or had some kind of relationship with Him (Romans 1:21, 28, 32). Somehow they ignored what they had learned about Him and the way He had shown them to live. They “did their own thing.” The saddest part of this chapter is that God got to the point that He gave them over to the consequences of their sins. God gave up on them!
I imagine God thinking or saying, “I convicted your hearts about sin. I gave you the knowledge to know what is sin and that you would stay away from it, but you ignored me. You think you are so smart (Romans 1:21, 22), but you will not stop sinning. I give up on telling you to flee from iniquity, and now you will reap the consequences of your wickedness.”
Three times God said He would not restrain them anymore from their sinful commissions (Romans 1:24, 26, 28). God’s guiding and warning hand came off of those people, and soon they were involved in at least 23 different violations (Romans 1:26-31) of God’s will and way. They found out their sin would take them much farther down sin’s slippery slope than they had ever expected it to take them.
Sadly, there are many today that are also like the Roman 1 casualties. They have heard admonitions to do right from their Sunday school teachers, parents, preaching, Scripture reading, and hundreds of other avenues. They know what is right or wrong, but sometime they decided to ignore what they had learned and live their lives their way. Soon one sin led to another. Other sins led to a more hardened heart, not heeding any righteous instructions. It happens to Christians and the unsaved alike.
One day they may come to the “bottom of their barrel” and see how low they have sunk. They may repent, turn their lives around, and live righteously. Some may die in their sin and never stop their iniquities.
However, there is hope when one can still hear the small, convicting voice of the Holy Spirit and obey His plea. Constant ignoring of that prodding conscience can result in what happened to the people spoken of in this chapter of Romans — God’s giving up on them.
What a frightening life that would be, to be without God’s help and blessing.
God is so good to give us many chances to turn from our sin and to turn to him. Too many confuse His mercy and grace with His toleration and allowance of sin. Although different for each person, one day God’s forebearance for sin will stop and the God’s lesson for us or the consequences of our iniquity will begin.
The sin of Noah’s day was raging. None of it escaped God’s eye. People of the time thought that they had gotten away with it. Their wickedness waxed worse. God saw “that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was evil continually” – Genesis 6:5. God was even sorry that He had created man. It was time for the wage for their sin to be paid and for it to cease.
In all the sinful chaos, God did see one righteous man, Noah. After him, his family, and selected animals were safely inside the ark Noah built, God actions said, “Enough of that sin.” The world-wide flood put an end to their evil-doings. In this case, God’s people were spared the consequences. Man had another opportunity to start over again thanks to one man’s not doing what everyone else was doing.
Man’s sinful nature still remained, however. Iniquity will always be a battle and it continued especially in the twin cities, Sodom and Gomorrah (Genesis 19). After tolerating their iniquities for so long, there came a time when God would no longer put up with their sins of sodomy and other sexual sins. It was apparently “enough” for God. Shortly, after God’s own were removed, the city was destroyed. Nothing of life there remained. Grace had ended for their sin.
Jonah also learned that there was a limit to what trespasses God would put up with. Perhaps he thought he had gotten away with his disobedience of not going to Ninevah, as he was commanded. Maybe he even thought his going to Tarshish was an acceptable substitute to God.
Shortly, Jonah learned otherwise. As a pounding tempest pummeled the ship and crew, the wayward child of God learned that God was saying, “Enough. You’re going no further in your sin.” The rest of the story tells how God got Jonah’s attention and how his heart was changed to willingly want to obey his Creator.
In the early church at Rome, there came a time when God’s people felt God’s “enough”, but much differently. They thought they knew better and purposed to ignore His commands. They thought they were so smart. They didn’t receive a lesson to teach them to obey their Father. Instead, the time for grace and second chances had passed. God let them reap the consequences to their own sins. It was like God said, “you want to continue to sin so bad, I will allow it to take its natural course and destroy you.” Three times God stated that He gave them over to their sin.
All throughout the Bible, a merciful God has tried to get His children to do right. Today is no different. He desires that we obey the first time. Many have lost and suffered much because they did not. His goodness in teaching us only goes so far. Some have faced jail, failure in school, loss of friends, accidents, a destroyed marriage, and many other consequences to get their attention to turn to God. God desired them to “learn and turn”. Others have hardened their sinful hearts, and were on their own and reaped devastation.
If we’re saved and trusting on God’s way, we have His promise of Heaven, but even we battle sin. No one in their right mind wants to pay its penalty. When the heart is still sensitive and unhardened is the time to repent of its violation, before God has to deal with it. Be a faster learner in this area, not a slow learner.
Do not confuse God’s mercy and graciousness with license to sin. No sin is okay. There could be a time at hand where God’s has to say to you, “enough”. Shudder at the thought. Why go through the trials and testings, obey and serve him now. Some, sadly sin without remedy. Obey and repent now before it is too late.
“You play with sin; you pay.”
Words to Understand:
Apostle: an early Christian teacher who had been with Jesus
Corruptible: changed for the worse; corrupted
Maliciousness: to injure or cause harm or damage
Malignity: to speak badly about others; holding a grudge
Reprobate: one who turned from living right and obeying God’s commandments; depraved
Unseemly: not decent
1 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God,
2 (Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,)
3 Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh;
4 And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:
5 By whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name:
6 Among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ:
7 To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.
8 ¶ First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world.
9 For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I make mention of you always in my prayers;
10 Making request, if by any means now at length I might have a prosperous journey by the will of God to come unto you.
11 For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established;
12 That is, that I may be comforted together with you by the mutual faith both of you and me.
13 Now I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you, (but was let hitherto,) that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles.
14 I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise.
15 So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also.
16 ¶ For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.
18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
19 ¶ Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.
20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,
23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.
24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:
25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.
26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:
27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.
28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;
29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,
30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,
31 Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:
32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.