Introduction to: Romans

One of the most celebrated and controversial letters ever written. Celebrated for it’s divine insights into key doctrinal beliefs the church holds, and robust explanations by its author the Apostle Paul about the deepest questions a believer has (sin, death, salvation, regeneration, law, liberty, God the Father, Jesus Christ, The Holy Spirit,). It also is quite controversial within Christian communities and denominations because of varying interpretations regarding, election, atonement and predestination. Aside from the controversies, it is a bold and majestic letter written by the Apostle Paul around the time of AD 57-58, primarily for an audience of Jewish Christians. Because it was written for Jewish Christian readers, much of the terminology and arguments Paul presents come from this perspective. We must get in the mindset of a 1st century Jew who has placed their faith in Jesus. This letter helped them better understand their heritage as descendants of Abraham into their faith in the Messiah Jesus Christ. Paul uses this letter as a segue to help his readers understand God’s plan to graft the Gentiles (all non-Jewish people) into the tree of life though faith in Jesus Christ. This letter is worth taking the time to slow down, do research and fully grasp its meaning. Often times, Paul can pack so much content into one sentence we have to take a deep breath and really study it before moving on to the next section. The advantage the Jewish Christian audience had is a much richer knowledge of the Torah and ancient Israel history. So take the time to learn more about their heritage because it is also ours as well. We are the descendants of Abraham not by flesh but by faith. And let’s read this letter with humility, knowing that by God’s grace toward us outsiders, we have been given the opportunity to be apart of His great family.

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