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Reading Guide

  1. In what ways is the letter to the Romans unique among the Pauline epistles? In particular, you should ask who the recipients were, what their relationship to Paul was, and why he was writing to them (e.g., in contrast to the other letters).

  2. Many people take Romans 1:16–17 to be the fundamental theme of this letter. What do these verses indicate about Paul’s “gospel” and its significance?

  3. What are the major themes that Paul develops through Romans 1–8? According to these chapters, why do people need to be made righteous, how does God bring about justification (“being made righteous”), and how does the Jewish Law figure into this act of justification?

  4. Compare and contrast the judicial and participationist models of salvation.

  5. What is Paul’s position on God’s past promises to Israel?

  6. Why should believers in Christ behave ethically, loving one another and “fulfilling” the Law, if salvation comes completely apart from the Law?

  7. In Romans, how does Paul show the equality of Jews and Gentiles before God?

  8. Rhetorically speaking, how does Paul frame his letter to the Romans? How does this rhetorical strategy work?

  9. What does faith mean to Paul?

  10. What do we know about Paul’s relationship with the Roman Christians following the composition of this letter?

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