Wisdom of Solomon 13:1


1 For all people who were ignorant of God were foolish by nature; and they were unable from the good things that are seen to know the one who exists, nor did they recognize the artisan while paying heed to his works; 2 but they supposed that either fire or wind or swift air, or the circle of the stars, or turbulent water, or the luminaries of heaven were the gods that rule the world. 3 If through delight in the beauty of these things people assumed them to be gods, let them know how much better than these is their Lord, for the author of beauty created them. 4 And if people were amazed at their power and working, let them perceive from them how much more powerful is the one who formed them. 5 For from the greatness and beauty of created things comes a corresponding perception of their Creator. 6 Yet these people are little to be blamed, for perhaps they go astray while seeking God and desiring to find him. 7 For while they live among his works, they keep searching, and they trust in what they see, because the things that are seen are beautiful. 8 Yet again, not even they are to be excused; 9 for if they had the power to know so much that they could investigate the world, how did they fail to find sooner the Lord of these things? 10 But miserable, with their hopes set on dead things, are those who give the name "gods" to the works of human hands, gold and silver fashioned with skill, and likenesses of animals, or a useless stone, the work of an ancient hand.

Romans 1:20

New Testament

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.

 Notes and References

"... Romans 1:18–2:5 is the first step in Paul's rhetorical revelation of the common condition of all human beings: homo est peccator (the human is a sinner). This is a revolutionary revelation. The language Paul employs, however, in terms of vocabulary, theme, and argumentative structure, has deep parallels in the early Jewish textual tradition. This is especially true of Wisdom of Solomon 13–15, which, like Rom 1:18–2:5, considers the relationship of Jews and Gentiles before God within the human history of idolatry. The parallels between Wisdom of Solomon and Romans make them readily comparable, but, as we shall see, the differences are even more significant ..."

Blackwell, Ben C. Reading Romans in Context: Paul and Second Temple Judaism (pp. 38-45) Zondervan, 2015

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