One of the bleakest passages found in the Bible is found in Romans 1:24, where the phrase “gave them up” is found. The phrase is again repeated in verse 26 and 28, emphasizing the fact that when God gives an individual (or individuals) up, there’s no hope for that individual. Through the power of choice (Joshua 24:15), they have determined and sealed their own eternal destiny.
In his commentary on Romans http://www.searchgodsword.org/com/bcc/view.cgi?book=ro&chapter=001, Brother Burton Coffman provides the following comment regarding this phrase:
“These dreadful words, thrice repeated with increasing intensity, are a kind of litany of the doomed, showing how dreadful is the fate of them that are given up of God, that is, handed over to the consequences of their rebellion.”
When God gives us up, there is no bleaker moment.
It’s not enough to have lived. We should be determined to live for something. May I suggest that it be creating joy for others, sharing what we have for the betterment of personkind, bringing hope to the lost and love to the lonely.
Leo Buscaglia, author and university professor (1924-1998)
The online dictionary gives this definition: (1) the power to determine, adjudicate, or otherwise settle issues or disputes; jurisdiction; the right to control, command, or determine; (2) a power or right delegated or given; authorization: Who has the authority to grant permission?; (3) a person or body of persons in whom authority is vested, as a governmental agency.
In addition to Stephen’s good reference of Colossians 3:17 regarding authority, I immediately think of Matthew 28:18, where the text says that Christ has “all authority” in religious matters (also see John 17:2). This means that when it comes to religious authority, I don’t have any. However, we do have the authority from Christ to “Go teach all nations” and “baptize them” by the supreme authority of the Godhead.
Brother John Moore has an excellent series of lessons regarding biblical authority: