Is Romans 1:18-23 alluding to Wisdom of Solomon 13?

Is Romans 1:18-23 alluding to Wisdom of Solomon 13?

Click to join the conversation with over 500,000 Pentecostal believers and scholars

Click to get our FREE MOBILE APP and stay connected



NIV Romans 1: 18The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against
all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth
by their wickedness, 19since what may be known about God is plain to
them, because God has made it plain to them. 20For since the creation
of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine
nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been
made, so that people are without excuse.
21For 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.
22Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23and
exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a
mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.


Wisdom of Solomon XIII. Surely vain are all men by nature, who are
ignorant of God, and could not out of the good things that are seen
know him that is: neither by considering the works did they
acknowledge the workmaster; 2 but deemed either fire, or wind, or the
swift air, or the circle of the stars, or the violent water, or the
lights of heaven, to be the gods which govern the world. 3 With whose
beauty if they being delighted took them to be gods; let them know how
much better the Lord of them is: for the first Author of beauty hath
created them. 4 But if they were astonished at their power and virtue,
let them understand by them, how much mightier he is that made them.
5 For by the greatness and beauty of the creatures proportionably the
Maker of them is seen.
6 But yet for this they are [or “are they?”]
the less to be blamed: for they peradventure err, seeking God, and
desirous to find him. 7 For being conversant in his works they search
him diligently, and believe their sight: because the things are
beautiful that are seen. 8 Howbeit neither are they to be pardoned
[“without excuse”]. 9 For if they were able to know so much, that they
could aim at the world; how did they not sooner find out the Lord
10 But miserable are they, and in dead things is their
hope, who called them gods, which are the works of men’s hands, gold
and silver, to shew art in, and resemblances of beasts, or a stone
good for nothing, the work of an ancient hand. 11 Now a carpenter that
felleth timber, after he hath sawn down a tree meet for the purpose,
and taken off all the bark skilfully round about, and hath wrought it
handsomely, and made a vessel thereof fit for the service of man’s
life; 12 and after spending the refuse of his work to dress his meat,
hath filled himself; 13 And taking the very refuse among those, which
served to no use, being a crooked piece of wood, and full of knots,
hath carved it diligently, when he had nothing else to do, and formed
it by the skill of his understanding, and fashioned it to the image
of a man; 14 or made it like some vile beast
, laying it over with
vermilion, and with paint colouring it red, and covering every spot
therein; 15 and when he had made a convenient room for it, set it in a
wall, and made it fast with iron: 16 for he provided for it that it
might not fall, knowing that it was unable to help itself; for it is
an image, and hath need of help: 17 then maketh he prayer for his
goods, for his wife and children, and is not ashamed to speak to that
which hath no life. 18 For health he calleth upon that which is weak:
for life prayeth to that which is dead: for aid humbly beseecheth that
which hath least means to help: and for a good journey he asketh of
that which cannot set a foot forward: 19 and for gaining and getting,
and for good success of his hands, asketh ability to do of him, that
is most unable to do any thing.

The Cambridge Paragraph Bible: of the Authorized English Version.
(1873). (Wis 12:27–13:19). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Also, Romans goes on to describe how this ignorance and idolatry led to all manner of uncleanness:

NIV Romans 1: 24Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of
their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies
with one another. 25They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and
worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.

26Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their
women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27In the
same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were
inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with
other men
, and received in themselves the due penalty for their

28Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the
knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that
they do what ought not to be done. 29They have become filled with
every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of
envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips,
30slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent
ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31they have no
understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy
. 32Although they know
God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death,
they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of
those who practice them.


Wisdom of Solomon 14: 18 Also the singular diligence of the artificer
did help to set forward the ignorant to more superstition. 19 For he,
peradventure willing to please one in authority, forced all his skill
to make the resemblance of the best fashion. 20 And so the multitude,
allured by the grace of the work, took him now for a god, which a
little before was but honoured as a man.
21 And this was an occasion
to deceive the world: for men, serving either calamity or tyranny, did
ascribe unto stones and stocks the incommunicable name. 22 Moreover
this was not enough for them,
that they erred in the knowledge of
God; but whereas they lived in the great war of ignorance, those so
great plagues called they peace. 23 For whilst they slew their
children in sacrifices, or used secret ceremonies, or made revellings
of strange rites; 24 they kept neither lives nor marriages any
longer undefiled
: but either one slew another traiterously, or
grieved him by adultery. 25 So that there reigned in all men without
exception blood, manslaughter, theft, and dissimulation, corruption,
unfaithfulness, tumults, perjury, 26 disquieting of good men,
forgetfulness of good turns, defiling of souls, changing of kind,
disorder in marriages, adultery, and shameless uncleanness. 27 For the worshipping of idols not to be named is the beginning, the cause,
and the end, of all evil.

The Cambridge Paragraph Bible: of the Authorized English Version.
(1873). (Wis 14:17–27). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Be first to comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.