Tag Archive: Romans 1:22



“Looking at His disciples, He said: ‘Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the Kingdom of God. 21Blessed are you who hunger now, for you will be satisfied. Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh. 22Blessed are you when people hate you, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man. 23Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their ancestors treated the prophets. 24But woe to you who are rich, for you have already received your comfort. 25Woe to you who are well fed now, for you will go hungry. Woe to you who laugh now, for you will mourn and weep. 26Woe to you when everyone speaks well of you, for that is how their ancestors treated the false prophets.'”

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If one has ears to hear, let him hear. Many verses containing the word of Christ, and indeed throughout the Bible, contain some passages that may look curious or downright scary at first glance. Furthermore, they may seem to contradict the rest of what scripture says, though with closer inspection this isn’t the case. Although this section provided me with a lot of comfort, it also alarmed me somewhat.

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It seemed to say that to follow Christ I had to be in a constant state of misery. This obviously isn’t the case. When we look at the example of Paul for instance, we find that he was content no matter what he lacked or what hardships he faced. As he says in 2 Corinthians 12:10, “I delight in weakness, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions in difficulties.” Instead, he had a faith that produced a harvest of contentment and joy no matter what the circumstance. So what is Jesus saying here? Does it contradict the joy that Paul, the apostles, and we have? Not at all, for even Christ Himself tells us to rejoice and “leap for joy” in verse 23.

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"San Paolo," by Pompeo Batoni. oil on canvas, c. 1742

2 Corinthians 5:4 says:

“For while we are in this tent, we groan and are burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life.” (See my Note, “On Being Swallowed up by Life”)

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Paul both groans and delights. Using these scriptures, what Christ really means in the aforementioned passage in Luke becomes clear. A Christian is not supposed to be void of laughter, or even prosperity. A Christian is warned in Romans 12:2 to, “not conform to the pattern of this world.” Though we are in the world we are not of the world, for now our eyes are focused on Christ. Our contentment rests not in the things of this world, and those activities and materials man chases after to pacify himself, but rather it rests on Christ. This being the case we ache, or groan, to be in our heavenly dwelling and away from the body and it’s meaningless desires, for we know the things of God are not momentary like those things people find “contentment” in within the world, but rather everlasting and more glorious than anything currently made up of the physical or based upon it.

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We should not find contentment or delight in mere things, for as all physicality will disappear to be renewed, so will those things based upon material. In addition, our happiness should not be dependent on man. If one constantly chases after approval of man, then he shifts more often than shadows. Such a person is deceptive to both himself and those he seeks approval from. Contentment in this is just as fleeting, for man’s support will vanish from you at anytime. The reliability of superficial friendships is a farce and often self-serving, ironically to both parties. As it is said, no one can serve two masters.

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Serve God, fix your eyes on His son and you will gain an eternal contentment and joy that is based on the everlasting, not given to decay and abandonment like the things of this world, but instead He who promises to carry you through all things. As Christians we will have heartache, hardships, and insults, but lo, how fleeting these things are, for when the physical as we know it now ceases to be, weeping will be transformed into joy, hunger to satisfaction, exclusion to inclusion, and a lack of possession into great riches within the Kingdom. To this we await and look forward to.

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“Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools.” -Romans 1:22


In 1837, Hans Christian Andersen’s short story,”The Emperor’s New Clothes,” was first published. In this popular tale, two weavers make a outfit for the Emperor that has the amazing and unique quality to be only seen by those who have the mental capacity to do so. The emperor himself, lest he be shown as stupid or lame, acknowledges to the weavers he does see the clothes as the weavers start the arduous task of weaving pure air.

Of course the emperor reveals his new clothes to the public, many agreeing with how exquisite the clothing is until a child yells that the emperor is naked, bringing everyone back to their senses. Those that professed they were wise in seeing the clothing turned out to be the fools as did the emperor himself.

This guise of the wise is something we find prevalent in today’s society as it was in the tale. Indeed, we have heard that if we don’t subscribe to one particular world view, then we may be ignorant, stupid, and equated to the least of all vermin. Thereby, many, like the crowd in the aforementioned example, subscribe to the ideals of the wise, so they will avoid being put in that light. Thus, such followers of like “wisdom” are motivated by an internal pride, which becomes evident in their treatment of others who may disagree with their “conclusions.”


This becomes evermore present the more influence and power this opposing “wise” view has. In fact, it gets to the degree that they have faith in others telling them what to believe and mocking faith even as they subscribe to a contradictory faith themselves.

Just because someone proclaims the self to be smart and have documents on a wall to “prove” it doesn’t make it so. We need to realize that some of those who hide behind science and modern academia are the same as that emperor, who when in the moment of judgement before the masses showed himself to be the fool, and exposed others who were likewise as foolish and thereby just as exposed as he was.

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