THE FUNDAMENTAL ISSUE

Scripture Reading:  Romans 1:24-32

“And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done.”  (Romans 1:28)

The opening three chapters of Romans lays out the case for the problem and effects of sin.  Most of us fail to understand how grievous our sin is before a holy God.  And most of us fail to understand the terrible consequences sin brings upon individuals, families and nations.  Paul spells out some of the manifestations of the root problem of sin — “They are filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice.  They were full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness.  They are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless” (vs. 29-31).

All of these sinful actions flow from the fundamental issue — “And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done.”  When people fail to acknowledge that God is God and that they are His subjects who are under His rule, they resort to living their lives according to their self-centered, debased minds.  To acknowledge God means to know that He is the Ruler and Sustainer of all things and our only means of salvation.  He is the King and we are His servants.  Our lives are subject to His will and ways.  Failing to do so results in terrible, sinful patterns that are dangerous and destructive.

Every minute of every day we are to acknowledge God’s presence, power and providential direction of our lives.  We are to submit to His ways as we yield our selfish desires and actions to His perfect will.  Only God can deliver us from our debased mind and sinful nature.  We can never do this in our own strength or by our best efforts.  However, we are not alone; we have the Holy Spirit living in us. He will grant grant us power to acknowledge God, love Him, and yield to His ways.  We will save ourselves so much heartache when we walk by the Spirit and not by the flesh.

O Holy Spirit, I know my tendencies toward sin.  I battle the flesh, the world and the devil every day.  Grant me strength to acknowledge God as God and to yield my will to His perfect will for my life.  Thank You for delivering me from a debased mind and enabling me to see Your truth.  Jesus, You are my King and I am Your servant.  Let me be subject to Your rule over my life this day.

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