Futile Thinking and a Depraved Mind in Romans 1

Many of you finished studying Romans 1 this Sunday, June 26,
2016. You may have had a very interesting discussion on topics that seem ever
more current and questions that were difficult if not seemingly impossible to
answer. Perhaps as you prepare next week’s lesson you may want to discuss on
the Forum what you and your class learned or had problems with in your study of
Romans 1. I have three observations that I will share.

1. Paul described a culture or society that was pagan because
it had turned away from God. This society or culture had suppressed the truth
in an effort to enjoy wickedness (Romans 1:18).

2. Therefore, the thinking of most of the people became
futile, empty, vain, meaningless, illogical, and irrational. Imagine living in a
society or a nation where the thinking of the leadership and their followers (most
of the people from “top to bottom”) was “futile, empty, vain, meaningless, illogical
and irrational” (Romans 1:21). What might life in that kind of a country be
like?

3. Persisting in turning from the truth and the futile
thinking that follows will lead to God giving these people (a society or
nation) over to a depraved mind. I believe that means God decides to just let
them do whatever their futile thinking leads them to do, which will result in
more futile thinking and a lifestyle that is self-destructive and unhappy (Romans
1:28). In such a situation, the only solution is to repent and turn to Jesus Christ
for salvation, for Him to free believers in Him from slavery to sin.

On August 28, we will discuss more about the solution for
Christians if they find themselves falling back into the futile ways of the
world’s thinking and living: “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be
transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and
approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” (Romans 12:2).

Each weeks Bible Lessons and Commentaries are posted on the International Bible Lessons Commentary website.

May God bless your study and teaching from Romans in the
weeks ahead!

For the Love of God’s Word,

L.G.
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