It’s a “giving up to,” not a “giving up on.”
That’s really the message of Romans 1:18-32 where the Apostle Paul talked about what happens when God turns someone (or a nation) over to a “reprobate mind.” The Greek word “adokimos” is used in Verse 28 for “reprobate” and basically means “unapproved, rejected, perverse, perverted, worthless, castaway, etc.”
Thus, it’s the picture of one who’s lost his/her direction, perspective and sensibility. And, dear Reader, from the looks of things that’s exactly where we are as a nation.
An honest, in-depth reading of Rom. 1:18-32 sounds like it’s taken from today’s headlines and tonight’s television line-up. It talks about “all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who hold back the Truth in unrighteousness” (v.18). And, it goes on to describe these as those who “knew God, but didn’t glorify Him and were ungrateful — which caused them to become vain in their imaginations, which sprang from a dark, foolish heart of sin” (v.21).
But, instead of coming to their senses and repenting, they “professed themselves to be wise (enlightened) and became fools” (v.22)!
And, what tell-tale signs are there to reveal this?
First, they resorted to manmade idols, good-luck charms, horoscopes, Ouija boards, etc., instead of trusting in the living God (v.23). Likewise, they engaged in “unclean lifestyles and worshipped created things more than the Creator” (vv.24-25).
Second, immorality (sexual sins) became quite commonplace and even applauded (vv.24-32). Even a casual reading of these verses shows that lesbianism and homosexuality spring from a reprobate mind — which comes from “not wanting to retain God in their knowledge” (v.28), i.e., “not including God in one’s views and values.”
So, what does He do in response to this?
Oh, He’s God and He could zap them and turn them into crispy critters or change them into dung beetles in North Dakota. Instead, He “gives them up or over to” (vv.24, 26, 28) — which means “turning them over to themselves to self-destruct.”
And, dear Reader, isn’t that exactly where we are as a nation?
Should we be surprised that everything’s falling apart and unraveling? From the early 1960’s … Vietnam, Kent State, bra-burnings, draft dodging, wholesale use of LSD and marijuana, Dr. Spock … to Tricky Dick, Watergate, Roe v Wade, Madelyn Murray O’Hair, etc., in the 1970’s … our nation has been under attack from within.
And, now, for almost one generation (40 years), we’ve continued operating under a reprobate mind until we’re no longer a blushing nation; instead, we’re a nation under God’s Wrath — and, unless there are some changes, we’ll soon experience His Judgment.
What might those changes be?
A change in the White House? Party changes in Congress? Better education? A balanced budget? Less foreign aid?
The answer is “None of the above.”
No, when everything’s “falling apart,” there’s a need for “falling down” and crying out to God in brokenhearted repentance (II Chronicles 7:14).
As Einstein or someone else once said, “The formula for insanity is to keep doing the same things you’ve always done the same way you’ve always done them and expecting different results.”
And, that certainly applies to our individual lives and nation, dear Reader.
God hasn’t “given up” on us; however, He has “given us over to.”
That’s why we must repent. Turn away from our sins and turn back to God; otherwise, we soon will be a nation “gone under.”
To contact Bro. Tom or receive his daily e-mail devotional, entitled “Morning Manna,” write him at P.O. Box 582, Coushatta, LA 71019 or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.