I am obligated both to Greeks and non-Greeks, both to the wise and the foolish. That is why I am so eager to preach the gospel also to you who are in Rome. For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile. For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”

Romans 1:14-17

Paul is unashamed of the Gospel. He is not hiding from the consequences that may come from preaching it, either in Jewish circles or Greek/Gentile ones. However, the meaning of that is deeper than merely boldly proclaiming an unpopular idea; Paul is pointing out the foolishness of resisting the will of God, as bad an idea now as it has been since the beginning.

The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.

Romans 1:18-20

Whereas in previous eras God’s wrath was for enemy nations and his protection was for his faithful chosen people, in the new world Jesus was bringing on was revealing grace for all who clearly saw the evidence that came through Jesus and his wrath was against the godless and disobedient.

For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.

Romans 1:21-23

The wisdom people claimed revealed itself to be foolishness and a mockery of the true wisdom of the Creator. They turned away to serve the things that they made with their own hands, and neglected that which was clearly seen, namely God’s eternal power and divine nature.

Don’t be misled! The modern Christian may not be guilty of idolatry but he is capable of foolishness. Rely on God’s wisdom and you will not be ashamed.

Ethan Kirl