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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Romans 1:25

 

 

For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.

Adam Clarke Commentary

Changed the truth of God into a lie - In the place of the true worship of God, they established idolatry. In various places of Scripture idols are termed lies. Isaiah 44:20; Jeremiah 10:14; Jeremiah 13:25. The true God was known among the primitive inhabitants of the earth, those who first became idolaters literally changed the truth of God into a lie: they did know the true God, but they put idols in his place.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/romans-1.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Who changed the truth of God - This is a repetition of the declaration in Romans 1:23, in another form. The phrase, “the truth of God” is a Hebrew phrase, meaning “the true God.” In such a case, where two nouns come together, one is employed as an adjective to qualify the other. Most commonly the latter of two nouns is used as the adjective, but sometimes it is the former, as in this case. God is called “the true God” in opposition to idols, which are called false gods. There is but one real or true God, and all others are false.

Into a lie - Into idols, or false gods. Idols are not infrequently called falsehood and lies, because they are not true representations of God; Jeremiah 13:25; Isaiah 28:15; Jeremiah 10:14; Psalm 40:4.

The creature - Created things, as the sun, moon, animals, etc.

Who is blessed forever - It was not uncommon to add a doxology, or ascription of praise to God, when his name was mentioned; see Romans 9:5; 2 Corinthians 11:31; Galatians 1:5. The Jews also usually did it. In this way they preserved veneration for the name of God, and accustomed themselves to speak of him with reverence. “The Muslims also borrowed this custom from the Jews, and practice it to a great extent. Tholuck mentions an Arabic manuscript in the library at Berlin which contains an account of heresies in respect to Islamism, and as often as the writer has occasion to mention the name of a new heretical sect, he adds, ‹God be exalted above all which they say‘” (Stuart).

Amen - This is a Hebrew word denoting strong affirmation. So let it be. It implies here the solemn assent of the writer to what was just said; or his strong wish that what he had said might be - that the name of God might be esteemed and be blessed forever. The mention of the degrading idolatry of the pagans was strongly calculated to impress on his mind the superior excellency and glory of the one living God. It is mentioned respecting the honorable Robert Boyle, that he never mentioned the name of God without a solemn pause, denoting his profound reverence. Such a practice would tend eminently to prevent an unholy familiarity and irreverence in regard to the sacred name of the Most High; compare Exodus 20:7.


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/romans-1.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Who changed the truth of God into a lie,.... Not the truth of the Gospel, which they were unacquainted with; but that which might be known of God as true, and was known of them by the light of nature; or the true God himself, whom they "changed into a lie"; by ascribing to false deities, which were lying vanities, those things which were known of God; and by worshipping them instead of him: for they

worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator; or "above him" or "against him", in opposition to him, or "besides him", others along with him; or neglecting him, and not worshipping him at all; which is aggravated in that what they worshipped was a creature, either of their own, or of God's making, and whom they neglected was the Creator of them:

who is blessed for ever, Amen; is blessed in himself, and the fountain of all blessedness to his creatures; which is so glaring a truth, that everyone ought to say and set his "Amen" to it.


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Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/romans-1.html. 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

Who changed the truth of God into a lie — that is, the truth concerning God into idol falsehood.

and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator — Professing merely to worship the Creator by means of the creature, they soon came to lose sight of the Creator in the creature. How aggravated is the guilt of the Church of Rome, which, under the same flimsy pretext, does shamelessly what the heathen are here condemned for doing, and with light which the heathen never had!

who is blessed for ever! Amen — By this doxology the apostle instinctively relieves the horror which the penning of such things excited within his breast; an example to such as are called to expose like dishonor done to the blessed God.


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This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/romans-1.html. 1871-8.

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

Exchanged (μετηλλαχανmetēllaxan). First aorist active indicative of μεταλλασσωmetallassō old word for exchanging trade, only here and Romans 1:26 in N.T. What a bargain they made, “the truth of God for (ενen) the (τωιtōi) lie.” “The price of mythology” (Bengel).

Worshipped (εσεβαστησανesebasthēsan). First aorist passive (used transitively) of σεβαζομαιsebazomai old verb, used in late Greek like σεβομαιsebomai to worship.

Rather than the Creator (παρα τον κτισανταpara ton ktisanta). Placed side by side (παραpara the Creator and the creature, κτισιςktisis) they preferred the creature.

Who is blessed forever. Amen (ος εστιν ευλογητοσ Αμηνhos estin eulogētoṡ Amēn). One of Paul‘s doxologies which may come at any moment when he is greatly stirred, as in Romans 9:5. ΕυλογητοςEulogētos is verbal of ευλογεωeulogeō f0).


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The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)

Bibliography
Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/romans-1.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Vincent's Word Studies

Who changed ( οἵτινες μετήλλαξαν )

Rev., for that they exchanged. The double relative specifies the class to which they belonged, and thereby includes the reason for their punishment. He gave them up as being those who, etc. Μετήλλαξαν exchanged(so Rev.), is stronger than the simple verb in Romans 1:23. Godet renders travestied. Compare the same word in Romans 1:26.

Truth of God

Equivalent to the true God.

Into a lie ( ἐν τῷ ψεύδει )

Better, as Rev., exchanged, etc., for a lie. Lit., the lie; a general abstract expression for the whole body of false gods. Bengel remarks, “the price of mythology.”

Worshipped and served ( ἐσεβάσθησαν καὶ ἐλάτρευσαν )

The former of worship generally; the latter of worship through special rites or sacrifices. On the latter verb, see on Revelation 22:3.

More than the Creator ( παρά )

The preposition indicates passing by the Creator altogether; not merely giving preference to the creature. Hence Rev., rather than. Compare Luke 18:14, where the approved reading is παρ ' ἐκεῖνον ratherthan the other, implying that the Pharisee was in no respect justified.

Blessed ( εὐλογητὸς )

See on 1 Peter 1:3.


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Bibliography
Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/vnt/romans-1.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

Who changed the truth — The true worship of God.

Into a lie — False, abominable idolatries.

And worshipped — Inwardly.

And served — Outwardly.


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Bibliography
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/romans-1.html. 1765.

Abbott's Illustrated New Testament

The truth of God; the truth in respect to God.--More than; rather than.


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Abbott, John S. C. & Abbott, Jacob. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Abbott's Illustrated New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ain/romans-1.html. 1878.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

25.Who changed, etc. He repeats what he had said before, though in different words, in order to fix it deeper in our minds. When the truth of God is turned to a lie, his glory is obliterated. It is then but just, that they should be besprinkled with every kind of infamy, who strive to take away from God his honor, and also to reproach his name. —

And worshipped, etc. That I might include two words in one, I have given this rendering. He points out especially the sin of idolatry; for religious honor cannot be given to a creature, without taking it away, in a disgraceful and sacrilegious manner, from God: and vain is the excuse that images are worshipped on God’s account, since God acknowledges no such worship, nor regards it as acceptable; and the true God is not then worshipped at all, but a fictitious God, whom the flesh has devised for itself. (52) What is added, Who is blessed for ever, I explain as having been said for the purpose of exposing idolaters to greater reproach, and in this way, “He is one whom they ought alone to have honored and worshipped, and from whom it was not right to take away any thing, no, not even the least.”


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Calvin, John. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/romans-1.html. 1840-57.

Vv. 25 was an interruption extorted from Paul by the need which his outraged heart felt to justify once more the severity of such a punishment. He now resumes his exposition of the punishment, begun in Romans 1:24; and this time he proceeds to the end. He does not shrink from any detail fitted to bring out the vengeance which God has taken on the offence offered to His outraged majesty.


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Bibliography
Godet, Frédéric Louis. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Frédéric Louis Godet - Commentary on Selected Books". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/gsc/romans-1.html.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

Ver. 25. Who changed] They tare out their natural principles and turned atheists, as Diagoras, who yet was an atheist more with his tongue than with his heart; for having cried down a deity in a famous oration, he yet suffered himself to be deified by the people for his eloquence. Qua ornari ab eo Diabolus quaerebat, as Austin writeth to a learned but lewd person of his times. See my Common Place of Atheism. Epicurus verbis reliquit Deos re sustulit, saith Cicero (De Nat. Deor.).


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Trapp, John. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/romans-1.html. 1865-1868.

Sermon Bible Commentary

Romans 1:25

Nature Worship.

Consider whether our religion or our irreligion is so free from the idolatrous element as we generally suppose, and if not what are the appearances which bear the most resemblance to the false religion of the ancient world.

I. Though the impious among ourselves no longer pray to stocks and stones, or beasts and birds, or moon and stars, there is still a strong taint of idolatry perceptible in our religion, science, literature, business—nay, our very language. Yes, I say our language. Can it be reverence, religious awe, that prompts the suppression of what would seem the most indispensable of all words—the incommunicable name of God? This explanation is precluded by the levity with which men often make that venerable name the theme of ribald jests and the burden of blasphemous imprecation. No, the name seems to be shunned because it means too much, suggests too much, concedes too much.

II. Not only is the grand and simple name of God exchanged for a descriptive title, such as Supreme Being, or an abstract term, the Deity, but still more readily and frequently is God supplanted by a goddess, and her name is Nature. This form of idolatry has all the aid that Art can render to Nature. The idolater of Nature cannot but be an idolater of Art, and here the coincidence with heathenism is not one of principle only, but of outward form. The high art of the ancients was a part of their religion. It was not an idle tickling of the sense or fancy. In the perfection of their imitation and the beauty of their original creations they did honour to the god of their idolatry, not indirectly, as the author of their skill, but most directly, as its only object. As long as man retains the sensibilities which God has given him and yet remains unwilling to retain God in his thoughts, the voice of Nature will be louder than the voice of God. If God is not in the fire or the wind or the earthquake, these will nevertheless sweep the multitude before them, and the still small voice of revelation will be heard only by a chosen few. When certain causes now at work have had their full effect, the worshipper of God will again be like Elijah on Mount Carmel, while the vast mixed multitude are worshippers of Nature.

J. A. Alexander, The Gospel of Jesus Christ, p. 61.


References: Romans 1:26-29.—Clergyman's Magazine, vol. ii., p. 34. Romans 1:28.—Homiletic Magazine, vol. ix., p. 346. Romans 1:32.—Expositor, 1st series, vol. ix., p. 213. 1—Ibid., vol. iii., p. 1. Romans 2:1.—Homiletic Quarterly, vol. i., p. 491. Romans 2:2-4.—Ibid., vol. iii., p. 67.




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Bibliography
Nicoll, William R. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Sermon Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/sbc/romans-1.html.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Romans 1:25. Who changed the truth of God into a lie Elsner takes great pains to shew, that the truth of God, here signifies what he really was; and a lie, a false representation. It is well known that idols are often called lies. See Isaiah 44:20; Isaiah 44:28.

"They changed the truth of God, the true doctrine of his nature, and the genuine institutions of his worship, into a lie, into abominable idolatries, founded on the falsest representations of God, and often supported by a train of artful forgeries." See Elsner's Observations, vol. 2: p. 11.


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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/romans-1.html. 1801-1803.

Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament

Here our apostle proceeds to give a particular and distinct account of the abominable idolatry and unnatural filthiness, which he had charged the Heathens with in the foregoing verses.

As to their idolatry, he had told us at the 23rd verse, that they had made false and unworthy representations of the ever-blessed God: worshipping God in and by the creatures. In the 25th verse, they are charged with a false object of their worship, giving divine honour to a creature: They changed the truth of God into a lie; that is, the true God into an idol, called a lie, because it deceives men as a lie doth by seeming to be that which indeed it is not; it seems in the idolater's fancy, to have something of divinity in it, when, in reality, it is but wood or stone. Every image of God is a false and lying representation of God.

Secondly, As to their uncleanness, he shews that they were so given up to the ravings of lust for sinning against the light of nature, that they forsook the order of nature, and were more brutish than the very brutes.

Learn hence, That when men provoke God finally to forsake them, and judicially to give them up to their own heart's lusts, they will not stick to commit such monstrous and unnatural uncleanness, as the very brute beasts abhor. Here men and women burnt in worse than beastly lusts towards those of their own sex.

Lord, if we are not more vile than the vilest of thy creatures, we owe it all to thy sanctifying, or, a least, to thy restraining grace. As by the grace of God we are what we are; so by his grace it is that we are not what we are not.


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Bibliography
Burkitt, William. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/wbc/romans-1.html. 1700-1703.

Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary

25.] This verse casts light on the τὴν ἀλήθ. ἐν ἀδικίᾳ κατεχόντων of Romans 1:18. The truth of God (the true notion of Him as the Creator) which they professed, they changed into (see on ἐν, Romans 1:23) a lie ( ψεῦδος = שֶׁקֶר, used of idols, Jeremiah 16:19), thus counteracting its legitimate agency and depriving it of all power for good.

σεβάζομαι, of the honour of respect and observance and reverence,— λατρεύω, of formal worship with sacrifice and offering. Both verbs belong to τῇ κτίσει; though σεβάζομαι would require an accusative, λατρεύω, the nearest, takes the government.

τῇ κτ.] the thing made, the creature—a general term for all objects of idolatrous worship.

παρά, beyond—which would amount to the exclusion of the Creator.

The doxology expresses the horror of the Apostle at this dishonour, and puts their sin in a more striking light. But we need not supply εἰ καὶ οὗτοι ὕβρισαν, as Chrys.

εὐλογητός is Blessed, κατʼ ἐξοχήν: the LXX put for it the perf. part., Ps. 117:24. The adjective is usually of God: the participle, of man.


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Bibliography
Alford, Henry. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hac/romans-1.html. 1863-1878.

Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament

Romans 1:25. οἵτινες μετήλλαξαν κ. τ. λ(497)] as those who exchanged, etc. In this description of the character of those who are given up, attached to Romans 1:24, Paul makes once more apparent the motive which determined God to give them up. The words are a renewed tragic commentary (comp Romans 1:22-23) on the διό, Romans 1:24. On ὅστις, quippe qui, which brings up the class to which one belongs, and thereby includes the specification of the reason, see Hermann, a(499) Soph. Oed. R. 688; Matthiae, p. 1073. Hofmann erroneously makes a relative protasis begin with οἵτινες, with which then διὰ τοῦτο κ. τ. λ(500), Romans 1:26, would be connected by way of apodosis: them, who exchanged etc., God has therefore given up. This would not be inconsistent with αὐτούς in Romans 1:26, which would then be resumptive; but the very praise of God, in which Romans 1:25 terminates, and still more the concluding ἀμήν, which can only indicate the end of the sentence (comp Romans 9:5, Romans 11:36; Galatians 1:5; Ephesians 3:21), ought to have decidedly precluded such a forced intermixture of sentences, which is not to be justified by subtleties.

The compound μετήλλ. (exchanged) is more significant than ἤλλαξαν (changed) in Romans 1:23.

τὴν ἀλήθ. τοῦ θεοῦ] to be taken entirely in harmony with the expression τὴν δόξαν τοῦ θεοῦ in Romans 1:23; therefore τοῦ θεοῦ is to be taken as genitive of the subject: the truth of God, the true divine reality,(502) so as to make it in point of actual meaning, though not in the abstract form of the conception, identical with: “true God” (Luther, and most expositors, including Rückert, de Wette, Tholuck, Fritzsche, Philippi, van Hengel). It is differently rendered by Wolf, whom Köllner follows: the truth revealed to the Gentiles by God. Reiche and Mehring (following Pareus, Camerarius, Estius, Seb. Schmid, and Cramer) take it as the true knowledge of God, so that θεοῦ would be genitive of the object. Compare Piscator, Usteri and Glöckler, who understand by it the original consciousness of God. Opposed to these views is the exact parallel in which Romans 1:25 stands to Romans 1:23, so that τοῦ θεοῦ ought not to be taken without necessity as having a different reference in the two verses. τὴν ἀλήθ. τ. θεοῦ is explained concretely by τὸν κτίσαντα in the second half of the verse.

ἐν τῷ ψεύδει] with the lie; ἐν as in Romans 1:23. By this Paul means, in contrast to τὴν ἀλήθ. τ. θεοῦ (but otherwise than in Romans 3:7), the false gods, which are κατʼ ἑξοχὴν the ψεῦδος in concreto, the negation of the truth of God. Comp on 1 Corinthians 8:4 f., 1 Corinthians 10:20. Grotius has aptly said: “pro Deo vero sumserunt imaginarios.” Comp Isaiah 44:20; Jeremiah 3:10; Jeremiah 13:25; Jeremiah 16:19, al(505); Philo, vit. Mos. p. 678 C, p. 679 A.

καὶ ἐσεβάσθησαν.… κτίσαντα] more precise explanation of the first clause of the verse.

ἐσεβ. κ. ἐλάτρ.] The former is general (coluerunt), the latter took place through sacrifices, and other definite rites and services; hence Paul designates his own specific service of God in Romans 1:8 by λατρεύω. σεβάζομαι, in Homer: to be afraid of (Il. vi. 167, 417), is employed in the later Greek like σέβομαι in the sense to revere, Orph. Arg. 550, Aq. Hos. x. 5. In the N. T. it only occurs here.

τῇ κτίσει] Corresponding with the verb standing next to it, so that the accusative is to be supplied with ἐσεβ. See Matthiae, § 428, 2.

παρὰ τ. κτίσαντα] in the sense of comparison: prae creatore, in which case the context alone decides whether the preference of the one before the other is only relative, or whether it excludes the latter altogether (see on Luke 18:14; and van Hengel on our passage). The second case is that which occurs here, in accordance both with the nature of the case, seeing that the Gentiles did not worship the Creator at all, and with the immediate connection ( μετήλλαξαν.… ἐν τῷ ψεύδει). The sense therefore substantially amounts to praeterito creatore (Hilary), or relicto creatore (Cyprian), i.e. they honoured the creature and not the Creator, whom they ought to have honoured. Theophylact says aptly, with reference to the comparative παρά: ἐκ τῆς συγκρίσεως τὸ ἔγκλημα ἐπαίρων. So in substance also Beza, Estius, and others, including Reiche, Tholuck, Olshausen, de Wette, Baumgarten-Crusius, Krehl, Reithmayr, Maier, Philippi, van Hengel. The relative interpretation: more than the Creator (Vulgate, Erasmus, Luther, Castalio, Grotius, Ammon, Rückert, and others), is therefore in point of fact erroneous. The contra creatorem, which Hammond, Koppe, Flatt, Fritzsche and Mehring find here, may likewise be traced to the sense of comparison (see Bernhardy, p. 259; Winer, p. 377 [E. T. 504]; and the passages from Plato in Ast. Lex. III. p. 28), but has against it the fact, that in the whole context Paul presents the matter in the light of a μετάλλαξις, of an exchanging the true for the false, not of hostility to the true. From that point of view the Gentiles have worshipped the creature, and not the Creator. Quite parallel is παρʼ ἐκεῖνον in Luke, Luke 18:14, Lachm.

The doxology: who is praised, בָּרוּךְ, not: celebrandus (comp on Ephesians 1:3; 2 Corinthians 11:31; Mark 14:61), for ever! Amen,—is a natural effusion of deeply-moved piety, called forth by the detestable contrast of the Gentile abominations just described, without any further special design (Koppe: “ne ipse in majestatem divinam injurius videri possit;” comp Tholuck).


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Bibliography
Meyer, Heinrich. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hmc/romans-1.html. 1832.

Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

Romans 1:25. την ἀλήθειαν, the truth) which commands us to worship God AS God.— ἐν τῳ ψεύδει [into a lie—Engl. vers.] (exchanged) for a lie) the price paid for [mythology] idol worship; ἐν, the Lat. cum.— ἐσεβάσθησαν, they worshipped) implying internal worship.— ἐλάτρευσαν, they served) implying external worship.— παρὰ) in preference to, more than, ch. Romans 14:5 [ ἡμέραν παρʼ ἡμέραν].


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Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jab/romans-1.html. 1897.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Who changed the truth of God into a lie; i.e. the God of truth, or the true God, into an idol, which is a lie, which seems to be that which it is not: or else, by the truth of God, understand those true sentiments and notions that they had of God, and were taught them, as before, by the light of nature, and the book of the creatures; these they changed into lying imaginations and conceits.

And worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator; or, besides the Creator: some understand it comparatively, they worshipped one more than the other; others exclusively, they worshipped one and not the other. They were guilty of two great errors; one was in their minds, they changed the truth of God into a lie; the other in their wills, they served the creature more than the Creator.

Who is blessed for ever. Amen: when the Hebrews of old made mention of the true God, they were wont to add these words: Let him be blessed for ever.


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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Romans 1:25". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/romans-1.html. 1685.

Justin Edwards' Family Bible New Testament

Changed the truth of God into a lie; the true God for an idol, or false god.

More than; instead of.

Blessed for ever; worthy of eternal love and praise.


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Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Family Bible New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/fam/romans-1.html. American Tract Society. 1851.

Cambridge Greek Testament for Schools and Colleges

25. οἵτινες. Quippe qui, “seeing that they,” repeats Romans 1:23 with amplification.

τὴν ἀλήθειαν τοῦ θεοῦ. Quite comprehensive = the truth about God and themselves and their relation to Him; so τῷ ψεύδει the false theory or statement of man and GOD which they adopted; cf. 2 Thessalonians 2:11, 1 John 2:27.

ἐσεβάσθησαν. Here only in N.T., and O.T. only Hosea 10:5 Aq. = they made their objects of worship.

ἐλάτρευσαν. Of full religious service. See Westcott, Hebr. ref. above, Romans 1:9.

παρὰ τὸν κτ., to the neglect of. Winer-M., p. 504; n. the tragic irony of the antithesis.

ὅς ἐστιν εὐλ. κ.τ.λ. Cf. Romans 9:5, 2 Corinthians 11:31, in each case a mark of deep emotion.


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"Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Cambridge Greek Testament for Schools and Colleges". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/cgt/romans-1.html. 1896.

William Godbey's Commentary on the New Testament

25. “Who changed the truth of God into a lie, worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for evermore. Amen.” Here we see the fatal downward trend of humanity, alienated from God; like a ship loosed from her moorings, adrift on the sea, the sport of the billows and the caprice of the storm, till wounded or wrecked. Hence when people get away from the personal indwelling Holy Spirit, they float on hellwardly whether through churches or outside. Creature worship is idolatry, whether it be a fine house, a pipe-organ, an old creed, water baptism or an elegant, learned preacher. It is creature worship instead of the heart cry after God.


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Godbey, William. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "William Godbey's Commentary on the New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ges/romans-1.html.

Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible

‘In that they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.’

And all this happened because man by his own choice exchanged the truth of God manifest in his heart for what was only a lie, a deceit, a pretence, and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, the One Who is blessed for ever. When he became aware of God speaking within he quashed it, and found a substitute. The addition of ‘Who is blessed for ever’ is typically rabbinic, but emphasises the difference between the gods which will not last on the one hand, and the God Who is everlasting on the other. Only One is deserving of praise.


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Pett, Peter. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible ". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/pet/romans-1.html. 2013.

Haldane's Exposition on the Epistle to the Romans

Whochanged the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

By changing the truth of God, referring to the attributes essential to His being is here meant the changing of the just and legitimate notions which ought to be formed of Him, not only in contemplation, but chiefly in practice. The lie in the same way principally refers to practice, not consisting only in speculative errors, but in perversity of action in superstitions and idolatries. The heathens changed the truth of God, that is, the true idea of God exhibited in the works of creation, into the false representations made of Him in their superstition idolatries. Thus departing from the true God, and receiving false gods in His stead, they worshipped the creature more, or rather, than the creator They pretended, indeed, that they did not forsake the Creator, while they served numerous divinities. They acknowledged that these were inferior to the sovereign God, whom they called the Father of gods and men. But whenever religious worship is offered to the creature in any manner whatever, it is forsaking God, whose will it is, not only that His creatures should serve Him, but that they should serve Him alone, on which account He calls Himself a jealous God. The idolatry of the Pagans was in reality, according to the view here given by the Apostle, a total abandonment of the worship of God. Who is blessed for ever. Amen. — This expression is here used by the Apostle for the purpose of inflicting a greater stigma on idolatry, denoting that we ought to honor and adore God alone, and are not permitted to take away from Him even the smallest ray of His glory. It is an expression that was almost in perpetual use among the Jews, and is still frequently found in their writings when they speak of God. It denotes that we should never speak of God but with profound respect, and that this respect ought to be accompanied with praise and thanksgiving. In particular, it condemns idolatry, and signifies that God alone is worthy to be eternally served and adored. The word ‘Amen’ is here not only an affirmation, or an approval; it is also an aspiration of pious feeling, and a token of regard for the honor of God.


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Haldane, Robert. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Haldane's Exposition on the Epistle to the Romans and Hebrews". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hal/romans-1.html. 1835.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

25. Changed—The apostle again refers to the primal cause of their deep plunges in unnatural animalism, their apostasy from God. They first dishonoured their Maker and then debased themselves.

Truth of God… lie—So the Hebrew writers called an idol preeminently a lie, as basely falsifying the glorious truth of the Divine nature.

The creature—The created object, whether deified animal or inanimate substance shaped into an idol.

More than—Rather than, instead of.

Blessed—A doxology asserting the Divine over all created nature.


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/romans-1.html. 1874-1909.

Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament

Romans 1:25. Being such as, or, ‘since they were such as.’ Here the Apostle reverts to the reason for the punishment.

Exchanged. A stronger phrase than that in Romans 1:23.

The truth of God. The truth or reality of God, the true Divine essence, practically the same as ‘the true God.’ The latter phrase would perhaps seem irreverent. Other views, the true knowledge of God, the true notion of God, etc., are less in keeping with the figure of exchanging.

For a lie; comp. Jeremiah 13:25, and similar passages, where idols are called a ‘lie.’ The term is apt because the heathen gods have no existence.

Worshipped and served. The former means religious reverence of every kind; the latter, formal worship, with sacrifice, and other acts and rites.

Bather than the Creator. The nature of the case leads us to prefer ‘rather than’ to ‘more than’; for idolatry is in compatible with the worship of the true God, who shares His honor with none of His creatures.

Who is blessed, etc. The doxology is the natural outburst of piety, aroused into holy indignation at the sin of idolatry, which is by the contrast portrayed in its darkest colors. The word rendered ‘blessed’ is applied, in the Bible, only to God; a different one is used of man, in the Psalms, Sermon on the Mount, etc.

Amen. Comp. chaps. Romans 9:5; Romans 11:33, for the solemn, liturgical close of a doxology.


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Bibliography
Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/scn/romans-1.html. 1879-90.

The Expositor's Greek Testament

Romans 1:25. οἵτινες μετήλλαξαν κ. τ. λ.: being as they were persons who exchanged the truth of God for the lie. “The truth of God” (cf. Romans 1:23, “the glory of God”) is the same thing as God in His truth, or the true God as He had actually revealed Himself to man. τὸ ψεῦδος, abstract for concrete, is the idol or false God. The ἐν (cf. Romans 1:23) answers to Hebrew בְּ. παρὰ τὸν κτίσαντα: to the passing by, i.e., disregard or contempt of the Creator. For this use of παρὰ, see Winer, 503 f. ὅς ἐστιν εὐλογητός: the doxology relieves the writer’s feelings as he contemplates such horrors.


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Nicol, W. Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". The Expositor's Greek Testament. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/egt/romans-1.html. 1897-1910.

Mark Dunagan Commentary on the Bible

Romans 1:25 for that they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

They deliberately swapped the truth of God (which they had) for lies. When you reject the truth, the only thing left to believe are lies. (2 Timothy 4:3-4; Proverbs 23:23; 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12)


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Dunagan, Mark. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Mark Dunagan Commentaries on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/dun/romans-1.html. 1999-2014.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

Who = Since they.

changed. Greek. metallasso; only here and Romans 1:26. A stronger word than in Romans 1:23.

the truth of God into a lie = the truth of God for the lie. Man transferred his worship from God (the Truth) to the devil. Compare John 8:44. Ephesians 4:25. 2 Thessalonians 2:9-11.

a lie = the lie. Greek. to pseudos. Compare 2 Thessalonians 2:11. The He is that Satan is man"s benefactor and is to be worshipped.

worshipped. Greek. sebazomai. App-137. Only here.

served. Greek. latreuo. App-137and App-190.

creature = the things created; not only sun, moon, stars, men, the animate creation, but Satan himself, the arch-enemy, who by means of his "lie" (Genesis 3:4, Genesis 3:5) transferred the worship of man from the Creator to himself, the creature.

more than. Greek. para. App-104.

blessed. Greek. eulogetos. Compare Romans 9:5. Mark 14:61. (The) Blessed One. Not a statement of doctrine, but a well-known Hebraism of praise to God as Creator.

for ever. App-151. a.

Amen. See Matthew 5:18. John 1:51, and p. 1511.


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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/romans-1.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

Who changed , [ hoitines (Greek #3748) meteellaxan (Greek #3337) = Quippe qui] - 'Inasmuch as they changed,' or, 'Being such as changed' (the pronoun here used assigning the reason for what went before).

The truth of God into a lie - or 'into the lie;' that is, the true God into the false (the abstract is here put for the concrete), the Living into the lying. In the Old Testament the idols of the pagan are constantly represented as 'vanity,' and 'a lie.'

And worshipped [ esebastheesan (G4573), here only] and served, [ elatreusan (G3000), in their hearts paying homage, and in their religious exercises worshipping by outward acts], the creature more than (or 'rather than') the Creator , [ para (Greek #3844) ton (Greek #3588) ktisanta (Greek #2936). para (Greek #3844), with accusative, 'along by,' 'beyond,' proeter, contra]. Professing merely to worship the Creator by means of the creature, they soon came to lose sight of the Creator in the creature. How aggrarated is the guilt of the Church of Rome, which, under the same flimsy pretext, does shamelessly what the pagan are here condemned for doing, and with light which the pagan never had!

Who is blessed forever. Amen. By this doxology the apostle instinctively relieves the horror which the penning of such things excited within his breast: an example to such as are called still to expose like dishonour done to the blessed God.


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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/romans-1.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(25) Who changed the truth of God into a lie.—They ceased to worship God as He is—in His own true essential nature, and worshipped false gods instead. The phrase “into a lie,” is literally, with a lie, the “lie” being regarded as the instrument by which the substitution is made. By “a lie” is meant here “false gods,” who are the supreme embodiment of falsehood. (Comp. Isaiah 44:20; Jeremiah 13:25; Jeremiah 16:19, &c.)

The introduction of the doxology in this verse is due to an impulse of reverential feeling. Shocked at the language which he finds himself using, and at the connection in which the most Holy Name has been mentioned, the Apostle turns aside for a moment to testify to his own humble adoration.


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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/romans-1.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.
changed
the truth
18; 1 Thessalonians 1:9; 1 John 5:20
into a lie
Isaiah 44:20; Jeremiah 10:14,15; 13:25; 16:19; Amos 2:4; John 2:8; Habakkuk 2:18
the creature
23; Matthew 6:24; 10:37; 2 Timothy 3:4; 1 John 2:15,16
more
or, rather. who is.
9:5; Psalms 72:19; 145:1,2; 2 Corinthians 11:31; Ephesians 3:21; 1 Timothy 1:11,17

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/romans-1.html.

Hodge's Commentary on Romans, Ephesians and First Corintians

Who change ( οἳτινεϚ). The pronoun has a causal sense, being such as those who, i.e., because they exchanged the, truth of God for a lie. The construction is the same as in Romans 1:23, μετήλλαχαν ἐν, they exchanged for, not they changed into. The truth of God, either a periphrase for the true God, or the truth concerning God, i.e., right conceptions of God. For a lie, that is, either a false God, or falsehood, i.e., false views of God. The former is the better explanation. The glory of God is God himself as glorious, and the truth of God, in this connection, is God himself as true; that is, the true God. In the Old Testament, as in Jeremiah 13:25; Jeremiah 16:19 the gods of the heathen are spoken of as lies. Anything which is not what it pretends to be, or what it is supposed to be, is in the Scriptures called a lie. The proof of this apostasy is, that they worshipped ( ἐσεβάσθησαν) and served ( ἐλάτρευσαν). These words are often synonymous, both being used to express inward reverence and outward worship; although the former properly expresses the feeling, and the latter the outward service. The creature ( κτίσει), not the creation, but any particular created thing. This noun belongs, in sense, to both the preceding verbs, although the first by itself would require the accusative. More than the Creator, παρὰ τὸν κτίσαντα, i.e., beyond, in the sense of more than, or in the sense of passing by, neglecting; "praeterito Creatore," as Beza translates. The latter suits best. Who is blessed for ever: Amen. Who, notwithstanding the neglect of the heathen, is the ever-blessed God. This is the natural tribute of reverence toward the God whom men dishonored by their idolatry. The word ἐυλογντός is by Harless, Ephesians 1:3 and by Meyer, made to mean praised, as the Hebrew בָרוּך, to which it so constantly answers; not, therefore, worthy of praise, but who is in fact the object of praise to all holy beings. Bretschneider (Lexicon), Tholuck, and others, render it "celebrandus, venerandus." Amen is properly a Hebrew adjective, signifying true or faithful. At the beginning of a sentence it is often used adverbially, verily, assuredly; at the end of a sentence it is used to express assent, it is true, so let it be. Paul says Amen to the declaration that God is the ever-blessed.


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Hodge, Charles. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". Hodge's Commentary on Romans, Ephesians and First Corintians. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hdg/romans-1.html.

The Bible Study New Testament

They exchange the truth. Some think the images were originally intended to help focus the mind on God. In time, the image became "god" for them, and God the Creator was forgotten.


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Ice, Rhoderick D. "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "The Bible Study New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ice/romans-1.html. College Press, Joplin, MO. 1974.

: for that they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

Not only did ancient people reject God, they actually engaged in an "exchange" (metallasso). This word occurs only here and Romans 1:26. The pagans "turned aside and distanced themselves from the true knowledge of God and traded him for the lie of idols" and sexual sin (Spicq, 2:470). The people described by Paul served creatures made by the Creator rather than honor the Creator who made the creatures. The one who is "blessed forever" and the only one who can offer salvation was rejected. This rejection had consequences. Paul again stated that God turned His back on these people, and this rejection took away all hope. The Gentiles were on their own, and they were lost. This type of situation can still exist if people do what is listed in verses26-27.

The word translated "worshipped" (sebazomai) is only found here. It is defined as "the rebellious elevation of the creature to the place of reverence that belongs solely to the Creator. This is not simply a pious reverence but an act (or acts) of worship" (CBL, GED, ).


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Price, Brad "Commentary on Romans 1:25". "Living By Faith: Commentary on Romans". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bpc/romans-1.html.

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