Earthly vs. Spiritual
This chapter started with Paul as an accountant, then an athlete, and finally, realizing he is an alien in a foreign land.
1st 3 words of v. 18 and last 4 words of v. 19 tell the story.
"For many walk...who mind earthly things."
These are 1 dimensional humans - they see life from one limited perspective. The only question they ever ask is, "How will this affect me now on earth." They cannot see over the horizon. They have earthly values.
ill.--Miley Cyrus talks of her rejection of her parent's conservative values, and says the Bible is full of fairy tales. She then states something very revealing:
Sexually, Cyrus said she is “down with” anything. She views her sexuality and even her gender identity as fluid. “I am literally open to every single thing that is consenting and doesn’t involve an animal and everyone is of age. Everything that’s legal, I’m down with. Yo, I’m down with any adult—anyone over the age of 18 who is down to love me,” she said. “I don’t relate to being boy or girl, and I don’t have to have my partner relate to boy or girl.”
Question for her: Why not involve an animal? On what basis does she decide that? Besides, if there’s no God and she’s just a result of evolution, then she is merely an animal anyway. And those she interacts with sexually are just animals—so why not any animals? In other words, she has decided to draw a line for some reason—but what reason? It’s actually because in her heart she knows God exists (Romans 1 (quickview) ), she knows she is different from the animals as she is made in God’s image (Genesis 1 (quickview) )—and she has a conscience (as seared as it is because of her sinful rebellion) because the law is written on our hearts (Romans 2 (quickview) ).
Question for her: Why only those over the age of 18? On what basis did she decide that? If there’s no God, why have any age restriction? On what basis would she argue against pedophilia? Why not do whatever anyone wants to do?
Warning: Where Miley Cyrus is now in her thinking is where our culture is heading as more and more people abandon Christian morality based on the Bible and decide to make their own rules/laws. Yes, the culture is becoming like that described in the book of Judges.
And a final warning for all to heed: Romans 1:18 (quickview)  says such people will “suppress the truth in unrighteousness.” Those who rebel against God’s laws cannot stand those people who stand on the absolute authority of the Word of God. It’s a clash of worldviews. Because of our sin nature, those who reject God and His Word will increasingly look on Christians as the enemy. We are seeing just that today in our culture. Those who want to do “what is right in their own eyes” don’t want freedom of religion; they are increasingly demanding that Christians accept what they do as okay or Christians shouldn’t be allowed to have freedom in the culture.