Jim Spiegel is a philosophy professor at Taylor University (a Christian College in Indiana, United States). He has published an article in Christianity Today: Unreasoanble Doubt, "The reasons for unbelief are more complex than many atheists let on."
It's interesting to see what a philosophy professor/Christian apologist has to say about why we have failed to be convinced about the existence of supernatural beings.
Paul provides at least part of the answer in the same Romans passage, noting that some people "suppress the truth by their wickedness" (1:18). We all suffer from intellectual blind spots created by personal vices and immoral desires. To the extent that we succumb to these, we may be tempted to adopt perspectives that enable us to rationalize perverse behavior.Damn him! He's discovered the secret. My life is a moral wreck and that's why I have to reject God. Can you imagine how my life would be transformed if I ever became a Christian? I'm just not ready for that kind of morality.1
In this regard, scholars are no different from anyone else. The 20th-century ethics philosopher Mortimer Adler (who was baptized quietly at age 81) confessed to rejecting religious commitment for most of his life because it "would require a radical change in my way of life, a basic alteration in the direction of my day-to-day choices as well as in the ultimate objectives to be sought or hoped for …. The simple truth of the matter is that I did not wish to live up to being a genuinely religious person."
Historian Paul Johnson's fascinating if disturbing book Intellectuals exposed this pattern in the lives of some of the most celebrated thinkers in the modern period, including Rousseau, Shelley, Marx, Ibsen, Hemingway, Russell, and Sartre. In their private (and often public) lives, these Western intellectual stars were moral wrecks. Could their rejection of God—and, in particular, Christianity, with its exacting moral standards—have been entirely intellectual and dispassionate? Or might the same desires confessed by Nagel and Adler have played a role in their atheism?
(I assume this is one of those "sophisticated" arguments for religion that we hear so much about.)
[Hat Tip: Canadian Atheist]
1. The University expects its members to use discretion and discernment in their choices of entertainment and recreation (some examples include media, Internet usage, and games). Social dancing is not permitted on or away from campus. However, acceptable forms of expression may include sanctioned folk dances, dances that are designed to worship God, dancing at weddings, and the use of choreography in drama, musical productions and athletic events. Activities and entertainment that are of questionable value or diminish a person's moral sensitivity should be avoided.