Reprobate Mind, Rom 1:16-31

According to Rom 1:16-31 all men have some knowledge of God.  God makes himself known in a variety of ways.  Yet, when men don’t retain God in their knowledge, God turns them over to a reprobate mind.  This could happen to any person hearing this sermon today.

In order to understand men’s regression to a reprobate mind, we will read Rom 1:16-31.  And then we will comment on the verses in this passage.  Ultimately, we want to learn how to keep ourselves and our children from being turned over to vile affections and a reprobate mind.

Notice, God makes himself known through the revealed wrath of God, Rom 1:17.  The wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men.  Think of Noah’s flood or Sodom and Gomorrah.

He makes himself know through the written truth of God, Rom 1:18.  The knowledge of God is written in the Bible where men can read it for themselves.  The trouble is that when you refuse to believe the Bible, God takes away the truth that he has revealed to you, Mk 4:24-25.  And he doesn’t only take it away from individuals, he takes it away from nations, as well.

God makes himself known through the manifest knowledge of God, Rom 1:19.  The knowledge of God is manifest in us.  There is a knowledge of God inside of every man.  This knowledge is manifest in our conscience, Rom 2:15.  When men refuse to believe, their mind and conscience are defiled, Titus 1:15.

And he makes himself known through the visible understanding of God, Rom 1:20.  The invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made.  If you want to know something about God just look around you, Job 12:7-10, or look up, Ps 19:1-6.  The visible reveals the invisible.

When men reject the revelation of God, they glorify him not as God, Rom 1:21.  God deserves glory because we are not worthy of all of his benefits [Acts 17:24-28].  Men don’t glorify God when they turn the glory of God into idols or when they deny the glory of God by rejecting the truth of creation in favor of “science falsely so called,” 1 Tim 6:20.

Likewise, they aren’t thankful, Rom 1:21.  The lack of gratitude characterizes this generation.  We have so much from God for which to be thankful, not the least of which is his salvation, which is the ultimate gift of God.

Unthankful people who don’t glorify God become vain in their imagination, Rom 1:21.  And the imagination of man is evil.  It was before the flood [Gen 6:5] and it was after the flood [Gen 8:21].  Man’s imagination exalts itself against the knowledge of God [2 Cor 10:5].  When men refuse to hear God’s words, they walk in the imagination of their own hearts [Jer 13:10].  And these imaginations, like evolution, are vain.

Furthermore, their foolish heart gets darkened, Rom 1:21.  They consider themselves to be wise in their imaginations but they are fools [1 Cor 1:19-21].  And their hearts are darkened so that they reject the truth of God, the revelation of God, the manifest knowledge of God and the visible understanding of God.

When men become fools and vain in their imagination, they start changing things. 

They change the glory of God, Rom 1:23.  They changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man. This is idolatry and humanism which yields the worship of the antichrist.  They made him like fowls, animals and creeping things.  They worship nature, evolution and the science of natural processes [Rom 1:25].

They change the truth of God into a lie, Rom 1:25.  They profess that this Holy Bible is not the truth, but rather a fairy tale.  Or else, they change the words that they don’t understand or accept into their own words.

Also, they change the natural order of God, Rom 1:26-27.  Women with women, men with men.  Sodomy is against nature.

They change the knowledge of God, Rom 1:28.  They don’t like to retain God in their knowledge. They not only want God out publicly, as in schools, they want him out of their minds.

The results are listed in Rom 1:29-32.  Every sin imaginable becomes evident.  You’re seeing these sins on full display in our society today.  In fact, everyone hearing this sermon is capable of committing any or all of the sins listed in these three verses.  This may seem inconceivable.  However, following Adam’s fall, sin entered and we all have it in us and in our hearts.

These sins are the ones you hear about on the nightly news, read about on the internet and see portrayed in Hollywood movies.  These sins will only become more common as children are educated by foolish professors who refuse to glorify God and give him thanks and who promote the lie of evolution and the unnatural use of the body.

Yet God is willing, through salvation in Jesus Christ, to indwell our bodies [Jn 14:23] and clean us up through his presence [1 Pet 1:15-16] and through his words [Jn 15:3].

When men change the glory, the truth, the natural order, and the knowledge of God, God gives them up, first, to uncleanness, Rom 1:24.  Men are unholy and their hearts are wicked and defiled [Jer 17:9-10; Mk 7:20-23].

Following this, God gives them up to vile affections, Rom 1:26.  Sodomy is a vile affection. God restrains these affections by his truth.  Yet when his truth is changed into a lie, then God just gives them up to these vile affections.  People may say that they were born this way.  However, just because the vile affections are there doesn’t mean that they have to give into these affections.  They should live according to the truth.

And then after this, God gives them up to a reprobate mind, Rom 1:28.  When the knowledge of God goes, the mind goes. This is what God did to Israel in Is 6:9-12 and it affected them through the ministry of Jesus [Matt 13:13-15] and through the ministry of Paul [Acts 28:25-28] and it still affects them today [Rom 11:25].  Now it is happening to the Gentiles [Rom 11:19-21].  Thank God when we get saved that we get a sound mind [2 Tim 1:7].

Everything with us and our children hinges on us knowing God, glorifying God, and being thankful.  When they quit this, then God just turns them over to the worldly philosophies of professors and evolutionists.  Then he turns them over to the vile affections that are deep within them and culturally acceptable.  And then he turns them over to a reprobate mind and all that sin that follows.  That which was deep within their heart comes out and is on public display.

Conclusion: With so much worldly pressure to reject God, we must keep reinforcing in our families the truth of God and the knowledge of God, being continually thankful and glorifying him.  Otherwise, our children may give into the sin that is within them and which is now culturally acceptable and legal.