why did paul write romans

Karris argues that Rom 14:1–15:7 is a generalised, universalised version of 1 Cor 8–10, abstracted from its original living context.37 If this is right, then what we read in 14:1–15:7 is not reflective of a pastoral situation in Rome at all. Williams, ‘Righteousness of God’, 251. 14 assumes a new communal identity that must now relativise all others. So far, in vv. For example, those interpreters who read ch. First, the conflict between the weak and the strong perpetuated a division that had been overcome in the gospel. The second indication of Paul’s apologetic purpose comes from the dialogical manner in which he advances his argument. And again, within the letter closing, what Paul says about the gospel is bound up with his mission to the Gentiles (15:16, 19). [54] See Crafton, ‘Paul’s Rhetorical Vision’, 337–38, who says that the existence of communities of both Jews and Gentiles is ‘living proof’ that God has been true to his Old Testament promises, and is, therefore, an ‘eschatological sign pointing to the final realization of these promises’. This means, of course, that when faith and love are harmed or disregarded in the community, hope inevitably withers, since the community will no longer look like the one that God’s gospel was designed to effect and fulfil. (1:5–6), I do not want you to be ignorant brothers that often I intended to come to you, and have been prevented from doing so until now, in order that I might have a certain harvest among you just as also among the rest of the gentiles (ἐν ὑμῖν καθὼς καὶ ἐν τοῖς λοιποῖς ἔθνεσιν). Rom 16:25; 1 Cor 15:1–2; Col 1:23). [18] This applies to the first epithet, δοῦλος Χριστοῦ Ἰησοῦ, as well as the other two. Such prayerful solidarity with Paul should not only contribute to his success33 but also ensure a positive reception of Paul whatever transpires in Jerusalem. Third, in probing the relationships between the reasons for Romans, I aim to encourage students and preachers of this great letter to treat it as a unity, and to see the wood for all the theological trees that lie within. ἐπιποθῶ γὰρ ἰδεῖν ὑμᾶς, ἵνα τι μεταδῶ χάρισμα ὑμῖν πνευματικὸν εἰς τὸ στηριχθῆναι ὑμᾶς, τοῦτο δέ ἐστιν συμπαρακληθῆναι ἐν ὑμῖν διὰ τῆς ἐν ἀλλήλοις πίστεως ὑμῶν τε καὶ ἐμοῦ. During the course of his stay in Rome, Paul became very well acquainted with the concepts & notions being propagated by the Church of Rome. [75] See further Paul Trebilco, Self-Designations and Group Identity in the New Testament (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2012), 25–28, for the rhetorical function of Paul’s uses of ἀδελφοί. 1–11), has formed a new community in Christ, a body within which each person is a member of one-another (12:4–5). 1:18–4:25; 9–11; 14:1–15:13), grace and peace as keynotes of the new age of salvation (1:7; cf. [27] Assuming we understand that Paul’s use of εὐαγγελίζομαι here entails gospel ministry broadly conceived, and not simply initial evangelisation. It is the fourth of a string of five first-person verbs in context (vv. In v. 9a he comes to his defence by asking, ‘Am I protecting myself?’ (προεχόμεθα),73 i.e. By the end of Paul’s third missionary journey, he is returning to Jerusalem with aid for the church there (Romans 15:25-26)—aid which comes mostly from the Gentile churches of Asia Minor and Greece. This is an important consideration. In the Book of Romans, Paul remains defiant that his gospel causes no embarrassment since it holds supremacy & muscle. 4:18–25; 11:1–36), the obedience of faith (1:5; 16:26; cf. These things [i.e., doctrines and truths] teach and exhort. A Fund-Raising Letter. While readers might perceive this message to be aimed towards the Jews, experts & researchers say that the message is for the masses. [12] J. See Barclay, ‘Faith and Self-Detachment’, 195. However, Karris offers a substantial articulation of it. However, rather than relegating Paul’s missionary purpose to a reason of lesser significance, we need to view it in its totality. [73] This is the customary meaning of the middle voice of this verb. He isn't, but again we have to look at it in the context in which it was written. [69] As often implied. He also engages the audience by telling them that the message he brought was firstly for the Jews to counter the rumor that he felt there was no place for Judaism in the Christian realm. Why write now, rather than several years previously, when the way was not open to visit Rome? It will be instructive to look briefly at each in turn (though not in that order). It is often noted that the compact, somewhat allusive, nature of Paul’s argument in 3:1–8 points forward to future discussion in the letter, especially in chapters 6 and 9–11,64 which implies that Paul’s apologetic purpose is evident beyond just these verses. 2–4 of 1:1–7), and of what has traditionally been understood as Paul’s thesis statement (1:16–17).16 The noun εὐαγγέλιον and the cognate verb εὐαγγελίζω also appear at the beginning and end of the thanksgiving section (vv. This picks up on Paul’s words to his interlocutor in 2:1, where he accuses him of judging the other. Close attention to the content and context of Romans suggests that Paul had three purposes in view in writing the letter—namely, a missionary purpose, a pastoral purpose, and an apologetic purpose. Early Jewish Soteriology and Paul’s Response in Romans 1–5 (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2002), 194. Also, he went head-on against idol worshipping since that was the prevalent norm in the Roman society. See BDAG 869, §2 (προέχω); Timmins, Romans 7 and Christian Identity, 61n112. 9, 15).17 In short, the gospel is central to the letter introduction. I believe there are a few reasons that Paul wrote this letter. In 14:1–15:13 Paul directly addresses a pastoral issue that is causing division within the churches of Rome. These verses offer four expressions of intent, which line up together as mutually interpreting descriptions of why Paul would love to visit the believers in Rome: Reason (4) is clear enough.27 In 6:21–23 and 7:4–5 the image of fruit is closely connected with the life that the gospel brings, so it seems that reasons (3) and (4) are closely tied together. Furthermore, he explains why he could not visit Rome previously and the incidents which hindered this particular wish of his. Ἕλλησίν τε καὶ βαρβάροις, σοφοῖς τε καὶ ἀνοήτοις ὀφειλέτης εἰμί, οὕτως τὸ κατ᾿ ἐμὲ πρόθυμον καὶ ὑμῖν τοῖς ἐν Ῥώμῃ εὐαγγελίσασθαι. And, third, the damage being caused to faith, hope, and love, had the potential to undermine the churches’ identity as distinctively Christian communities. However, it is highly likely that the Christians in Rome will know of the criticisms of ‘antinomian, anti-Israel’ Paul, which, when combined with Paul’s apparent lack of previous interest in Rome, were likely to have caused suspicion, some of it potentially strong in nature. There are those, whom Paul labels ‘the strong’ (15:1) who are despising ‘the weak in faith’ (14:1) or simply ‘the weak’ (14:2; 15:1).34 Conversely, the weak are standing in judgment over the strong.

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