In the Bible's letters to the church in Rome, the Apostle Paul's list of what breaks God's heart and what is against His commands is fairly inclusive. If we want to call ourselves Christians (those who are trying to be Christlike and following Him), faith in Him as well as striving to live a life of purity is necessary. Remember, it's an exchange: He gave his life for us- we give Him our lives in return. Living in a godly manner brings him glory.
There's a better way!
18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of people who suppress the truth by their unrighteousness, 19 because what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world his invisible attributes—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, because they are understood through what has been made. So people are without excuse.
21 For although they knew God, they did not glorify him as God or give him thanks, but they became futile in their thoughts and their senseless hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for an image resembling mortal human beings or birds or four-footed animals or reptiles. 24 Therefore God gave them over in the desires of their hearts to impurity, to dishonor their bodies among themselves. 25 They exchanged the truth of God for a lie and worshiped and served the creation rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.
26 For this reason God gave them over to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged the natural sexual relations for unnatural ones, 27 and likewise the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed in their passions for one another. Men committed shameless acts with men and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.
28 And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what should not be done. 29 They are filled with every kind of unrighteousness, wickedness, covetousness, malice. They are rife with envy, murder, strife, deceit, hostility. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, contrivers of all sorts of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 senseless, covenant-breakers, heartless, ruthless. 32 Although they fully know God’s righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but also approve of those who practice them.
There is hope in Jesus!
The words of the Apostle Paul sting! Those who are believers in Jesus Christ the King (like me) fall short of His Holiness every day. Where is my hope? And where is there hope for those people who do not know Him yet? This list means it is impossible to please God by our own strength. And that's the point. And it directs us to God for salvation and hope. Look earlier in the chapter at verses 16 and 17:
"For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is God’s power for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For the righteousness of God is revealed in the gospel from faith to faith, just as it is written, “The righteous by faith will live.”
What is the Gospel? It's the Good News that Jesus came to the earth in human form to pay the price for our sins. Those who believe that He died and was resurrected, who trust in Him for the forgiveness of their sins, will be saved from an eternity in Hell and instead will enjoy Him in Heaven forever. This message is truly good news! It doesn't matter what you've done in the past- or what you struggle against presently. This gift is God's offer to you - because He knows a perfect and sinless life is not possible.
Don't give up!
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