But the final clause here may serve to qualify the group of whom Paul is speaking to some degree.  He says that they “hold the truth in unrighteousness.”  This word “hold” indicates that they suppress the truth.  This they do because the truth, fully preached and insisted upon, will put the brakes to their sinful pleasures.  They will tolerate nothing interfering with their unrighteous desires, and therefore they suppress the truth of God.  They do this when they can by ignoring it, at other times by ridiculing it, and oft by outright persecution.  Wicked men have proven themselves willing to go to the most horrible lengths to suppress the truth of God, and keep it from shining the light on their ungodly deeds.  They do it in civilized country, where the word of God is known, by persecuting and reviling those who stand upon God’s revealed truth.  The pagan countries have become pagan by turning their backs upon God in favor of idols, until such time as they utterly forgot what knowledge they formerly had about the God of heaven, and their minds are completely blinded with satanic darkness.

supremecourtOur own culture provides all too many stark examples of the truth being suppressed in unrighteousness.  The removal of prayer, of the name of God, of His commandments, of anything and everything connected with our Lord Jesus Christ, from schools and courtrooms, from polite public discourse, is a definite attempt by the enemies of heaven to eliminate His truth from the common consciousness.  The insistence that atheistic evolution must be taught in all publicly funded institutions of learning, to the absolute exclusion of glorifying God as Creator, shows the determination of the enemies of God to suppress His truth, and that they would eradicate it altogether if they could.  The public ridicule of every person who takes a stand on biblical righteousness is yet further evidence that demonstrates the truth of our passage to the very letter.  Moreover, the cowardice of all too many preachers, in obscuring, ignoring, or perverting those scriptures which speak against popular cultural trends and influences, shows that this desperate condition afflicts the religious world as well as the secular.  That God’s wrath is being revealed from heaven against the ungodliness and unrighteousness of our culture and society is commonly agreed by all who retain the fear of the Lord as the beginning of wisdom.  That it is certain to be manifested in far harsher forms than we presently observe seems so likely as to be inevitable.