"Romans" is one of the key epistles and the first Pauline letter in
the New Testament. It is primarily a theological document and is
therefore fundamental to the formation of Christian belief. Written
by Paul as he prepared to visit Rome for the first time, it is a
thoughtful letter to a well-established community whose faith and
religious habits have become widely known and whom he regards with
some reverence. "Romans" is a rich book from a biblical studies and
theological point of view. In it, Paul makes his declaration that a
person is justified by faith rather than works, a view which became
of critical importance in the Reformation. His discussion of the
role of the Law versus faith marked an important turning point in
the disjuncture between Christianity and Judaism. Despite this,
Paul argues that salvation is available for everyone, and
identifies Abraham as the father of both Judaism and Christianity,
linking the religions in one trajectory. The cultural impact of
"Romans" has been immense. During the Reformation, "Romans" was
drawn on extensively by Luther in his attack on the Catholic
Church. In later centuries, it was tremendously influential on
major theologians such as Karl Barth. In art and literature, the
theology of "Romans" has influenced many fine works of art
including many depicting the Christ child sitting in Abraham's lap;
and the division between love and the law is the bedrock of plays
such as "The Merchant of Venice", "Measure for Measure", and
Kafka's "The Trial". Many expressions from "Romans" have entered
the English language ('hoping against hope') and been incorporated
into popular hymns, especially those penned by the Wesleys. This
volume will explore all the major influences of "Romans" in social,
political, theological and cultural life.
Wiley-Blackwell (an imprint of John Wiley & Sons Ltd)
|Country of origin:
||Wiley Blackwell Bible Commentaries
Paul S Fiddes
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