Romans 1:21
Parallel Verses
New International Version
For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.

New Living Translation
Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn't worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused.

English Standard Version
For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened.

New American Standard Bible
For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

King James Bible
Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
For though they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God or show gratitude. Instead, their thinking became nonsense, and their senseless minds were darkened.

International Standard Version
For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him. Instead, their thoughts turned to worthless things, and their senseless hearts were darkened.

NET Bible
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.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Because they knew God, and they did not glorify him as God, nor did they give him thanks, so that they became destitute in their reasoning and became dull in their heart without understanding.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
They knew God but did not praise and thank him for being God. Instead, their thoughts were pointless, and their misguided minds were plunged into darkness.

Jubilee Bible 2000
because having known God, they did not glorify him as God, neither were thankful, but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

King James 2000 Bible
Because, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish hearts were darkened.

American King James Version
Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

American Standard Version
because that, knowing God, they glorified him not as God, neither gave thanks; but became vain in their reasonings, and their senseless heart was darkened.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Because that, when they knew God, they have not glorified him as God, or given thanks; but became vain in their thoughts, and their foolish heart was darkened.

Darby Bible Translation
Because, knowing God, they glorified [him] not as God, neither were thankful; but fell into folly in their thoughts, and their heart without understanding was darkened:

English Revised Version
because that, knowing God, they glorified him not as God, neither gave thanks; but became vain in their reasonings, and their senseless heart was darkened.

Webster's Bible Translation
Because that when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful, but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

Weymouth New Testament
For when they had come to know God, they did not give Him glory as God nor render Him thanks, but they became absorbed in useless discussions, and their senseless minds were darkened.

World English Bible
Because, knowing God, they didn't glorify him as God, neither gave thanks, but became vain in their reasoning, and their senseless heart was darkened.

Young's Literal Translation
because, having known God they did not glorify Him as God, nor gave thanks, but were made vain in their reasonings, and their unintelligent heart was darkened,
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

1:18-25 The apostle begins to show that all mankind need the salvation of the gospel, because none could obtain the favour of God, or escape his wrath by their own works. For no man can plead that he has fulfilled all his obligations to God and to his neighbour; nor can any truly say that he has fully acted up to the light afforded him. The sinfulness of man is described as ungodliness against the laws of the first table, and unrighteousness against those of the second. The cause of that sinfulness is holding the truth in unrighteousness. All, more or less, do what they know to be wrong, and omit what they know to be right, so that the plea of ignorance cannot be allowed from any. Our Creator's invisible power and Godhead are so clearly shown in the works he has made, that even idolaters and wicked Gentiles are left without excuse. They foolishly followed idolatry; and rational creatures changed the worship of the glorious Creator, for that of brutes, reptiles, and senseless images. They wandered from God, till all traces of true religion must have been lost, had not the revelation of the gospel prevented it. For whatever may be pretended, as to the sufficiency of man's reason to discover Divine truth and moral obligation, or to govern the practice aright, facts cannot be denied. And these plainly show that men have dishonoured God by the most absurd idolatries and superstitions; and have degraded themselves by the vilest affections and most abominable deeds.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 21. - Because that, knowing God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful (rather, gave thanks); but became vain in their imaginations (διαλογισμοῖς, elsewhere more correctly rendered "thoughts" or "reasonings;" cf. 1 Corinthians 3:20, "The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain" - μάταιοι, as here, ἐματαιώθησαν), and their foolish heart was darkened.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Because that when they knew God,.... Though they had such a knowledge of the being and perfections of God, yet

they glorified him not as God. They neither thought nor spoke honourably of him; nor did they ascribe those perfections to him, which belonged to him; they did not adhere to him as the one and only God, nor honour him as the Creator of all things out of nothing, and as the sole Governor of the universe; they did not glorify him by the internal exercise of fear of him, love to him, or trust in him, nor by any external worship suitable to his nature, and their own notions of him, Seneca is an instance of this, of whom Austin (f) says,

"that he worshipped what he found fault with, did what he reproved, and adored that which he blamed.''

Neither were thankful; neither for the knowledge of things they had, which they ascribed to themselves; nor for their mercies, which they imputed to second causes:

but became vain in their imaginations; the vanity or their minds was the spring and source of their evil conduct; which may design the wickedness of their hearts, and the imaginations thereof, which were evil, and that continually; the pride of their natures the carnality and weakness of their reasonings, and the whole system of their vain philosophy; and hence they ran into polytheism, or the worshipping of many gods:

and their foolish heart was darkened; where they thought their great wisdom lay: darkness is natural to the hearts and understandings of all men, which is increased by personal iniquity; Satan is concerned in improving it, and God sometimes gives up the hearts of persons to judicial blindness, which was the case of these men.

(f) De Civitate Dei, l. 6. c. 10.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

21. Because that, when they knew God—that is, while still retaining some real knowledge of Him, and ere they sank down into the state next to be described.

they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful—neither yielded the adoration due to Himself, nor rendered the gratitude which His beneficence demanded.

but became vain—(compare Jer 2:5).

in their imaginations—thoughts, notions, speculations, regarding God; compare Mt 15:19; Lu 2:35; 1Co 3:20, Greek.

and their foolish—"senseless," "stupid."

heart—that is, their whole inner man.

was darkened—How instructively is the downward progress of the human soul here traced!

Romans 1:21 Additional Commentaries
Context
God's Wrath against Sin
20For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. 21For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22Professing to be wise, they became fools,…
Cross References
Genesis 8:21
The LORD smelled the pleasing aroma and said in his heart: "Never again will I curse the ground because of humans, even though every inclination of the human heart is evil from childhood. And never again will I destroy all living creatures, as I have done.

1 Kings 20:23
Meanwhile, the officials of the king of Aram advised him, "Their gods are gods of the hills. That is why they were too strong for us. But if we fight them on the plains, surely we will be stronger than they.

2 Kings 17:15
They rejected his decrees and the covenant he had made with their ancestors and the statutes he had warned them to keep. They followed worthless idols and themselves became worthless. They imitated the nations around them although the LORD had ordered them, "Do not do as they do."

Isaiah 44:20
Such a person feeds on ashes; a deluded heart misleads him; he cannot save himself, or say, "Is not this thing in my right hand a lie?"

Jeremiah 2:5
This is what the LORD says: "What fault did your ancestors find in me, that they strayed so far from me? They followed worthless idols and became worthless themselves.

Jeremiah 9:14
Instead, they have followed the stubbornness of their hearts; they have followed the Baals, as their ancestors taught them."

Jeremiah 17:9
The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?

Ezekiel 20:25
So I gave them other statutes that were not good and laws through which they could not live;

Ephesians 4:17
So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking.

Ephesians 4:18
They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts.
Treasury of Scripture

Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

when.

Romans 1:19,28 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God …

John 3:19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, …

they glorified.

Romans 15:9 And that the Gentiles might glorify God for his mercy; as it is written, …

Psalm 50:23 Whoever offers praise glorifies me: and to him that orders his conversation …

Psalm 86:9 All nations whom you have made shall come and worship before you, …

Hosea 2:8 For she did not know that I gave her corn, and wine, and oil, and …

Habakkuk 1:15,16 They take up all of them with the angle, they catch them in their …

Luke 17:15-18 And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and …

2 Timothy 3:2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, …

Revelation 14:7 Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the …

Revelation 15:4 Who shall not fear you, O Lord, and glorify your name? for you only …

but became.

Genesis 6:5 And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth…

Genesis 8:21 And the LORD smelled a sweet smell; and the LORD said in his heart, …

2 Kings 17:15 And they rejected his statutes, and his covenant that he made with …

Psalm 81:12 So I gave them up to their own hearts' lust: and they walked in their …

Ecclesiastes 7:29 See, this only have I found, that God has made man upright; but they …

Isaiah 44:9-20 They that make a graven image are all of them vanity; and their delectable …

Jeremiah 2:5 Thus said the LORD, What iniquity have your fathers found in me, …

Jeremiah 10:3-8,14,15 For the customs of the people are vain: for one cuts a tree out of …

Jeremiah 16:19 O LORD, my strength, and my fortress, and my refuge in the day of …

Ephesians 4:17,18 This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you from now …

1 Peter 1:18 For as much as you know that you were not redeemed with corruptible …

their foolish.

Romans 11:10 Let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see, and bow down their …

Deuteronomy 28:29 And you shall grope at noonday, as the blind gropes in darkness, …

Isaiah 60:2 For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness …

Acts 26:18 To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and …

1 Peter 2:9 But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, …

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Alphabetical: although and as became but darkened did even foolish For futile gave give glorified God heart hearts him honor in knew neither nor not or speculations thanks their they thinking though to was were

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