Lesson 2 – Developing Character Under the Wrath of God

 Developing Character Under the Wrath of God

Lesson Aim:  To show that without God’s help bad character develops.

Scripture:  Romans 1:24-32.

Definitions:  Romans 1:29-32.

  1. UNRIGHTEOUSNESS: Greek adikia – unrightness, lawless, not being right according to the standard – man knows to be right by his own conscience.
  2. FORNICATION: poneria – illicit sexual intercourse.
  3. WICKEDNESS: bad or worthless.
  4. COVETOUSNESS: pleonxia-to wish to have more, always in a bad sense (extortion), gain or take advantage, or wrong.
  5. MALICIOUSNESS: kakia-eil, badness, the vicious character generally.
  6. ENVY: phathonos-jealousy, feeling of displeasure produced by witnessing or hearing of the advantages or prosperity of others.
  7. MURDER: phonos-the act of murder.
  8. DEBATE: eris-strife, contention, expression of enmity.
  9. DECEIT: dolos-primarily a bait or snare, hence craft, deceit.
  10. MALIGNITY: kakoetheria-evil disposition, bad manner that tends to put the worst construction on everything.
  11. WHISPERERS: psithuristis-detractor occurs in an evil sense.
  12. BACKBITERS: katalosos-one who speaks against.
  13. HATERS OF GOD: theostuges-Hateful to God, those who practice these things.
  14. DESPITEFUL: hubristes-a violent man, insolent, to insult.
  15. PROUD: huperephanos– exceedingly proud, showing oneself above others, always used in a bad sense in the Bible.
  16. BOASTERS: alazon-taking on great airs, primarily signifies a wanderer about the country, a vagabond, an imposter, quackery or fake.
  17. INVENTORS OF EVIL THINGS: epheuretes,- a discoverer, i.e. a contriver; kakos, evil, to find morally or ethically evil qualities.
  18. DISOBEDIENT TO PARENTS: apeithes-unwilling to be persuaded, obstinate, rejection.
  19. WITHOUT UNDERSTANDING: asunetos – without perceiving with the mind, without considering.
  20. COVENANT BREAKER: asunthetos-Not abiding by one’s covenant, treacherous.
  21. WITHOUT NATURAL AFFECTION: astorgos – hard hearted toward kindred.
  22. UNMERCIFUL- aneleemon– without mercy (mercy: to feel sympathy with the misery of another and especially sympathy manifested in an act).
  23. IMPLACABLE- aspondos-one who will not be persuaded to enter into a covenant, a state of war, will not cease.


Please study the foregoing attributes and behavior of people “who did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer.” Romans 1:28. These people did not plan to develop these traits of character.  They, like people today, were seeking happiness; however, they made an error in their pursuit.

Our previous study revealed they suppressed truth.  They suppressed the truth about God, the Creator.  Being void of truth they were left without understanding about their purposes in life.  At this juncture they tried to make the fleshly creation the center and purpose for their own existence.  They tried to find a power among the created things to give meaning for their existence.  Their physical appetites became more important than their “selves.”  The fleshly body and the things that could be accomplished by their physical life (psuche) became more important than the real person.  The spiritual element of man and its development was lost as their goals.  They lost sight of the Creator in whose likeness their spirits were made (Jas. 3:9).  Confusion developed and God gave them over to let sin reign in their lives.   God’s wrath was upon them.

Now let us study again the kind of person they became without truth.  We only need to look at each of the twenty-three words to see the horrible state of their individual personality, character and behavior.  If we doubt Paul’s summary of life without God all we need to do is read the daily newspapers and note the activities going on in our time.  It reads about like the Apostle Paul’s description of the man without God.

We must have the truth if we will become the man Jesus described in His Sermon on the Mount.  The truth about God as the Creator and how mankind was created in God’s image to be His children is our starting point (Heb. 12:9).  We develop faith we can be one of God’s children (Rom. 8:22, 23).  We accept the new covenant and the blessings in Christ (Eph. 1:3-14).   We stop suppressing the truth about our inner-man.   We repent.

Or do you show contempt for the riches of His kindness, tolerance and patience, not realizing God’s kindness leads you toward repentance.  Romans 2:4. 

Questions for Discussion

  1. What did certain people in our lesson suppress? Explain.
  2. What effect did this suppression have on their goals in life?
  3. What part of life becomes overly important when mankind loses his or her goal for eternity?
  4. At what point did God give mankind over to his or her sin?
  5. What is the result of living under the power of one’s own sin?
  6. What is the truth about God and man as it is stated in this and our previous lesson?
  7. When we understand truth, what effect will it have on our personality?
  8. What effect did the suppression of truth have on the personalities of those involved?

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply