What Does Romans 1:18 Mean?

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness,

Romans 1:18(NASB)

Verse Thoughts

For over two whole chapters, we find God building an irrefutable and airtight case against the sinfulness of all mankind. God is offended with man because of sin, and the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all that we have said, all we have done, and all that we are.

As fallen sinners we are all justly condemned by God and are worthy of His righteous and everlasting punishment, and for two whole chapters we discover God's blistering accusations against us to be righteous and faultless. Indeed, we can come to no other conclusion than that we are all deserving of His punishment. God's assessment of all men, whether Jew or Gentile, bond or free, male of female, moral or immoral, black or white, old or young, the pagan and the saved are: "all under sin."

We are not sinners because we sin, but we sin because we are sinners and we suppress the truth that we have received from God Himself. The whole tenure of the early chapters of Romans is leading to the conclusion that all men are sinners and all need a Saviour for all have fallen short of the glory of God and His righteous requirements - and this designates ALL to be under God's wrath. We may not have committed the same sins as others, but we all fail God's standard. We are all inherently sinful and so all men are condemned under the same godly standard for: "ALL are under sin."

As it is written in the Scriptures, there is none righteous, no, not even one. There is no one who understands and none who seek after God, for all suppress the truth in unrighteousness. God's assessment of the human race is that all are useless. There are none that are good and no one who is righteous - not even one. From Adam forwards, we discover that all men are under sin and all are under the condemnation of God, because all have been given light from God but so many reject the light of the glorious gospel of grace.

As believers, we are astonished to discover that it is not the Law of Moses nor even the Word of God that pronounces men as sinners in this passage, for not all people have had access to God's written Word, and yet from Adam onward, we discover that ALL are under God's condemnation because men love darkness rather than light because their deeds are evil.

God has given man a three-fold light: 1) The light of nature. 2) The light of conscience. 3) The light of the Holy Scriptures. And for those who have never had access to the Word of God, His condemnation still rests upon all men, for all are surrounded by the witness of nature: "The heavens declare the glory of God." Indeed, the trees of the field, the birds of the air, the stars and the storms, the ice and the seasons all give irrefutable witness to His existence, His nature, His character, His goodness, and His glory. All men have received 1) the light beyond - through the beauty and intricacies of nature. 2) the light within - the inner conscience that knows right from wrong. And although that light will not save him, for salvation is found in Christ alone, nevertheless such knowledge and light will condemn him, as Paul tells us in the early chapters of Romans.

For two whole chapters, Paul lays out God's universal standard for man - which declares ALL men guilty of sin, for all are under sin. And Paul starts to pen this vital passage by stating: "The wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and the unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness." Praise God that the rest of the book of Romans gives us clear guidelines on how to be saved by grace through faith in Christ Jesus, the one and only Saviour Whose sacrificial death paid the full price for our sin, and Whose glorious Resurrection imparted to us His resurrected life, making us part of an entirely new creation, children of God, and joint-heirs with Christ - by faith in HIM.

My Prayer

Heavenly Father, thank You for the witness of nature, the witness within, and the witness of Your written Word. Lord, thank You that You will send Your wrath against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of man. And praise You, that You made a way for us all to escape that wrath. You loved the world so much, that You sent Jesus to be the propitiation for the sins of all who believe on the name of the only begotten Son of God. Thank You that His death satisfied You as payment for my sins. All praise, and glory, and honour to You. In Jesus' name I pray, AMEN.

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