I have to relate this incredible analogy from Dr. Knox Chamblin on the verb in the phrase "suppress the truth by the means of their unrighteousness" in Romans 1.
We believe simply that means that people are maybe just bored by God or neglectful. Maybe we interpret the idea of just not being inspired by Christianity or more in love with the world.
Dr. Chamblin relates it to someone visiting an art gallery, full of the most beautiful paintings and valuable pieces of art ever assembled. The verb 'to suppress' is not just that person going through the gallery and yawning- it is more akin to them taking a switchblade and spray paint and seeking to destroy the pieces, marring them forever.
We are not just disinterested in the things of God- in our natural, fallen, broken covenantal state- we despise Him.
Martin Luther was honest just before his conversion. He said 'I don't love God.... in fact, I hate Him". We spew and vent and mock and question our Creator to no end. He patiently takes it and offers love.
The wrath of God is His settled and unswerving opposition to all things evil and unrighteous. But His main desire is to let that wrath pour out on the cross and allow us to escape His punishment.
We often use Rev 3:20 "Behold I stand at the door and knock" as a salvation verse. But in context, it really is a repentence verse. We have turned our back in contempt on the Father. He is knocking on the door, just as He was calling out in the garden, "Where are you?" "Please open this door". But we dread it- we do not want to face this shameful meeting.
But what does God do? "I will come in a sup with Him and he with Me."
If we turn to Him now, we find the Father's arms of love. But if we keep hiding and hating, He will have no choice. We have decided our fate.
Review Man's Depravity below- it is time to leave the mud and mire and be cleansed. Is this where we really want to be?
God gave them over: He lets them have their way
Judgment contained in the activity- consequences are there!
Desires- Heart Thoughts- mind Actions- will
Evil is corrupted good:
Insolent- instead of humble and teachable
Sex- good but polluted by deviancy
Arrogant- instead of humble and meek
Envy- good things but not a good god
Boastful- instead of humble and quiet
Murder- killing a Image Bearer of God- destroying life.
Inventors of evil- instead of creators of good
Strife- ruining good relationships
Disobedient to parents- instead of trusting
Deceit- instead of truth
Senseless- instead of good common sense
Malice- hurting instead of helping
Faithless- instead of developing faith
Gossips- whispering evil intents
Heartless- instead of caring
Slander- loud, evil, arrows and darts
Ruthless- instead of giving mercy
God haters- instead of God lovers
Keep going in spite of consequences and encourage the practice in others.
This is why we need to be saved..... the wrath and consequences are MUCH DESERVED!