Class Notes: 6/23/2022
The book of Romans part 57; Rom 1:20-21;
In our verse by verse study of Romans last time we completed Rom 1:19; where we saw that God personally brings every normal person to God consciousness so verse 20 will go on to show that those who reject God are without excuse.
Rom 1:19; Expanded Translation: "Because what is known about God is revealed in them (God consciousness); for the God has revealed himself to them."
Again the order of the words in the Greek differs from most of the English translations except for the KJV this time we will start with the word order found in the original Greek.
Rom 1:20; "For the invisible things of him." Again, the conjunction "gar" used as an explanatory conjunction, plus the nominative neuter plural of the definite article "ta" translated " the" plus the nominative neuter subject "aoratos" that means "invisible things."
With this is the possessive genitive singular from the intensive pronoun autos, used as a personal pronoun. Many invisible things belong to God. Here it refers to His attributes, and it should be translated: "for his invisible attributes." In other words, God's essence is real and invisible.
"From the creation of the world" "apo" the preposition of source translated "from" plus the ablative, and the ablative of "ktisis" translated "creation" plus the descriptive genitive from kosmos translated "world." So the phrase can be translated "since the creation of the world."
"Apo" can denote a point where something began and it can also be used as a preposition of time, that is the way it is used here. "For his invisible attributes (God's essence) since the creation of the world." Or, in better English, "For since the creation of the world his invisible attributes."
"Are clearly seen" them present passive indicative from the compound verb kathorao (kata = down; orao = to see) that means to look down, to view, to perceive, to clearly perceive, to be understood to be seen thoroughly.
It refers to something that is no longer obscure or ambiguous. The present tense of "kathorao" is a customary present denoting what habitually occurs at the point of God consciousness.
The passive voice: the divine attributes of God receive the action of the verb at God-consciousness and are clearly understood. At God consciousness all normal people become aware of God's justice, God's righteousness, and God's sovereignty.
The indicative mood is declarative for the fact of the reality of God consciousness in the life of every normal person who has a functional brain.
"Being understood" is the present passive participle of "noeo", meaning simple perception that occurs with normal thinking. The present tense, again, is a customary present denoting what always occurs at God consciousness. The Nestle Aland text translates it "being given thought"
Again the passive voice refers to perception of certain divine attributes that receive the action of the verb and become understood at the point of God-consciousness. The participle denotes simultaneous action with the main verb that is translated "are understood."
"Through what has been made" in the NASB comes from a single word in the Greek that means through the creation; translated from he instrumental plural of the noun "poiema " that means "creation." "
Even his eternal power and deity" referring to God's omnipotence as deity. This is expressed with a disjunctive particle "te" that is used to express similar terms that are correlated and complimentary.
A combination of particles come next: "kai" and te indicating the related things, plus an adjective, aidios, a Homeric word for eternal or always existing. Plus the possessive genitive of the intensive pronoun "autos", emphasizing God's essence plus the noun "dynamis" referring to God's omnipotence.
"And Divine nature" translated from "theiotes" that refers to God's essence as Deity.
"So that they are without excuse" - the entire human race, without exception, is without excuse before the God's justice. The preposition "eis" plus the present active infinitive of "eimi" translated "are."
This expresses God's objective. When we have a prepositional phrase it always the case that when you find the object it determines the meaning of the preposition. So we have to translate it "for the purpose of being."
The infinitive expresses the aim or the action denoted by the finite verb. The attributes of deity are clearly perceived so that all members of the human race have no excuse in their defense before the God's justice.
"For the purpose of being" is an idiom meaning "so that they are" plus the accusative plural from the noun "anapologetous" that means without excuse in a courtroom so they are without excuse or defense before God's justice.
Rom 1:20; Expanded Translation: "For since the creation of the world his invisible attributes (essence) are clearly perceived, being understood through the things which he has created, namely both his omnipotence (eternal power) and his divine nature (essence of deity): so that they (the entire human race) are without excuse before the God's justice."
Rom 1:21; Verse 21 goes on to address the issue of gospel hearing. "For even though," "because" or "therefore" is the causal conjunction "dioti" that expresses the reason for God's righteous judgment that is described as "wrath" being deployed on those who are maladjusted to the God's justice for salvation.
Rejection of Christ at the point of Gospel hearing results in unbeliever reversionism, that we call heathenism. By heathenism we are not only describing primitive conditions that have existed historically almost since the beginning of time, but we are also referring to conditions that exist in the highest point of western civilization and that have existed throughout the highest civilizations of history.
Whether we are talking about the highest levels of civilization or the most primitive conditions such as that found in South America, Africa or the Australian Outback there is no difference.
Heathen refers to all kinds of people in the human race who have rejected God and His Word of truth regardless of where they live. At this point in time according to the recent Gallop poll taken in the USA if 20% of the adult population doesn't believe in God then there are over 60 million heathen people in the USA.
"when they knew God" the aorist active participle of the verb "ginosko." The aorist tense is a Greek idiom. Whenever the aorist tense occurs it is an idiomatic tense since it has absolutely no relationship to time.
In the English language all tenses are related to time, the English has no equivalent to the aorist tense.
The Greek word itself "aorists" is an adjective that means unlimited or indefinite. Occasionally in the indicative mood there is a relationship to the past tense. That is why we have an aoristic present and why we have a future tense with an aorist concept, because the only way the aorist is related to time is occasionally in the past.
So the aorist views the action of the verb as a single whole. The culminative aorist views the convincing ministry God the Holy Spirit in making gospel hearing as a reality in its entirety, but it regards it from the viewpoint of existing results.
An example is "epignosis" of the gospel where God the Holy Spirit makes the gospel clear under His the convincing ministry and the doctrine of common grace are combined into one entirety but the emphasis of the culminative aorist is on the end result.
The result is that the person clearly understands the gospel and actively rejects it even though he understands it completely. In other words, he says no to epignosis" of the gospel.
This is a category of reversionism among unbelievers. Just as reversionism is formed among believers when they say no to doctrine, in effect the same thing is true for the unbeliever but in a different situation.
He says "no" to a specific portion of doctrine that deals with salvation that is often called the gospel even though there are passages where the word "gospel" or good news referring to all categories of Bible doctrine.
The active voice: the unbeliever produces the action of the verb through gospel hearing, and the Holy Spirit makes it clear. This is the inhale of the gospel. The unbeliever cannot understand the gospel and the Holy Spirit acts as a stand-in for the human spirit and makes the gospel a reality.
Where there is negative volition at the point of epignosis gospel so the unbeliever goes into unbeliever reversionism that is heathenism. The participle is a temporal participle used for a temporal clause, plus the action preceding the participle occurs before the action of the main verb.
We then have the accusative singular direct object plus the definite article plus the proper noun "Theos" that is translated "God" so the first phrase is "Because even when they knew God."
This is a reference to having spirit taught understanding referred to as "epignosis" that requires a yes or a no answer resulting in either believing or unbelieving and In this case negative volition responds with a "no" so they reject the Gospel message and remain an unbeliever.
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