In this Book

Augsburg Fortress Publishers
summary

Deeply conversant in the full range of questions and interpretations of the letter, Jewett's commentary explores the crucial and controverted passages that have always animated studies of Romans. Jewett also incorporates the exciting new insights from archaeology of the city of Rome, social history of early Christianity, social-scientific work on early Christianity, and the interpretation and reception of Paul's letter through the ages.

Breaking free from abstract approaches that defend traditional theologies, Jewett shows that the entire letter aims to elicit support for Paul's forthcoming mission to the "barbarians" in Spain. His work specifically focuses on Paul's missionary plans and how they figure in the letter, on Paul's critical and constructive tack with the Roman community, and finally and especially on how Paul's letter reframes the entire system of honor and shame as it informed life in the Roman Empire at the time. The latter remains a pertinent message today. The first commentary to interpret Romans within the imperial context as well as in the light of the situation in Spain, this landmark commentary, twenty-five years in the making, will set the standard for interpretation of Romans for the next generation.

Table of Contents

  1. Title Page, Copyright
  2. pp. i-v
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  1. The Author, Endpapers
  2. p. vi
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. vii-x
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  1. Foreword
  2. pp. xi-xii
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  1. Editor’s Note
  2. pp. xiii-xiv
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  1. Preface
  2. pp. xv-xvi
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  1. Sources and Abbreviations
  2. pp. xvii-xxxiv
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  1. Works Cited
  2. pp. xxxv-lxx
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  1. Introduction
  2. p. 1
  1. 1. The Approach of the Commentary
  2. pp. 1-4
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  1. 2. Text-Critical Issues in a Sixteen-Chapter Letter
  2. pp. 4-18
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  1. 3. Chronological and Compositional Circumstances
  2. pp. 18-23
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  1. 4. The Rhetoric of Romans: Evangelical Persuasion
  2. pp. 23-46
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  1. 5. The Cultural Situation in Rome: The Pyramid of Honor
  2. pp. 46-59
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  1. 6. The History and Orientation of the Christian Communities in Rome
  2. pp. 59-74
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  1. 7. The Cultural Situation in Spain: Subjugated Barbarians
  2. pp. 74-79
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  1. 8. The Purpose of Romans in the Plan for the Spanish Mission
  2. pp. 80-92
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  1. Commentary
  2. pp. 93-94
  1. I. The Exordium (“Introduction”) (1:1–12)
  2. pp. 93-95
  1. A. The Inauguration of Paul’s Communication with Believers in Rome: Sender, Apostolic Credentials, Confession, Address, and Greeting (1:1–7)
  2. pp. 93-116
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  1. B. Thanksgiving and Causa: The Announcement and Rationale of Paul’s Forthcoming Visit (1:8–12)
  2. pp. 117-126
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  1. II. The Narratio (“Statement of Facts”): The Background of Paul’s Missionary Project (1:13–15)
  2. pp. 127-134
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  1. III. The Propositio (“Thesis, Basic Contention”): The Thesis about the Gospel as the Powerful Embodiment of the Righteousness of God (1:16–17)
  2. pp. 135-147
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  1. IV. The Probatio (“Proof”): Four Proofs of the Thesis and Its Implications for the Roman Congregations (1:18–15:13)
  2. p. 148
  1. A. The First Proof: The Gospel Expresses the Impartial Righteousness of God by Overturning Claims of Cultural Superiority and by Rightwising Jews and Greeks through Grace Alone (1:18–4:25)
  2. p. 148
  1. 1. The Revelation of Divine Wrath (1:18–32)
  2. p. 148
  1. a. Thesis and Rationale: The Exposure of Human Suppression of the Truth about God (1:18–23)
  2. pp. 148-162
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  1. b. Elaboration: Human Distortion as a Current Indication of Divine Wrath (1:24–32)
  2. pp. 163-191
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  1. 2. The Righteous Judgment of Greeks and Jews (2:1–29)
  2. p. 192
  1. a. Diatribe concerning Impartial Judgment according to Works (2:1–16)
  2. pp. 192-218
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  1. b. Diatribe concerning the Nonexemption of Jews from Impartial Judgment (2:17–29)
  2. pp. 219-237
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  1. 3. The Evidence of Universal Sin (3:1–20)
  2. p. 238
  1. a. Diatribe Refuting Objections to Impartial Judgment (3:1–8)
  2. pp. 238-252
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  1. b. Diatribe and Catena of Quotations Demonstrating Universal Sin (3:9–20)
  2. pp. 253-267
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  1. 4. The Righteousness of God and Setting Right of All by Faith Alone (3:21–31)
  2. p. 268
  1. a. Thesis and Rationale concerning the Triumph of Righteousness in Christ (3:21–26)
  2. pp. 268-293
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  1. b. Diatribe Affirming the One God of Jews and Gentiles (3:27–31)
  2. pp. 294-303
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  1. 5. Abraham and the Righteousness That Comes through Faith (4:1–25)
  2. p. 304
  1. a. Diatribe and the First Part of a Midrash Showing That Abraham Received Righteousness by Faith before He Was Circumcised (4:1–12)
  2. pp. 304-321
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  1. b. Expansion of the Midrash Showing That Abraham’s Promise Comes to Those Who Are Righteous through Faith (4:13–25)
  2. pp. 322-343
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  1. B. The Second Proof: Life in Christ as a New System of Honor That Replaces the Quest for Status through Conformity to the Law (5:1–8:39)
  2. p. 344
  1. 1. Introduction: Righteousness in Christ Requires a New System of Boasting (5:1–11)
  2. pp. 344-368
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  1. 2. Abundant Grace in Christ Overwhelms Adam’s Reign of Death (5:12–21)
  2. pp. 369-389
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  1. 3. Diatribe and Enthymemes Concerning the Death of the Sinful Self and the New Life in Christ (6:1–14)
  2. pp. 390-412
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  1. 4. Diatribe Concerning Living to God under the Grace and the Lordship of Christ (6:15–23)
  2. pp. 413-427
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  1. 5. Syllogism Concerning Life in Christ as Freedom from the Law (7:1–6)
  2. pp. 428-439
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  1. 6. Speech-in-Character Concerning the Moral Status of the Law (7:7–12)
  2. pp. 440-453
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  1. 7. Speech-in-Character Concerning the Effect of the Law (7:13–25)
  2. pp. 454-473
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  1. 8. Thesis and Rationale Concerning the Cosmic Struggle Between Flesh and Spirit (8:1–17)
  2. pp. 474-503
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  1. 9. Thesis and Rationale Concerning the Hopeful Suffering of the Children of God (8:18–30)
  2. pp. 504-530
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  1. 10. Conclusion: The Status of the Elect Based on Divine Love (8:31–39)
  2. pp. 531-554
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  1. C. The Third Proof: The Triumph of Divine Righteousness in the Gospel’s Mission to Israel and the Gentiles (9:1–11:36)
  2. p. 555
  1. 1. Introduction: The Tragic Riddle of Israel’s Unbelief (9:1–5)
  2. pp. 555-569
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  1. 2. Thesis and the First Part of a Midrash on Israel and the Righteousness of Divine Election (9:6–18)
  2. pp. 570-586
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  1. 3. Diatribe and the Second Half of a Midrash Refuting Objections (9:19–29)
  2. pp. 587-605
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  1. 4. Diatribe on the Failure to Submit to Divine Righteousness, Which Is Caused by Misguided Zeal (9:30–10:4)
  2. pp. 606-620
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  1. 5. Pesher Confirming Righteousness by Faith (10:5–13)
  2. pp. 621-633
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  1. 6. Syllogism and Citation-Chain Concerning the Gospel Preached but Rejected (10:14–21)
  2. pp. 634-649
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  1. 7. Diatribe and Midrash concerning the Status of Israel (11:1–10)
  2. pp. 650-665
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  1. 8. Diatribe and Allegorical Enthymeme Dealing with the Missional Purpose of Israel’s Trespass (11:11–24)
  2. pp. 666-693
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  1. 9. Oracular Disclosure and Enthymeme on the Mystery of Global Salvation (11:25–32)
  2. pp. 694-712
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  1. 10. Conclusion: A Hymn on the Majesty of God as Revealed in the Mysterious Plan of Global Salvation (11:33–36)
  2. pp. 713-723
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  1. D. The Fourth Proof: Living Together according to the Gospel so as to Sustain the Hope of Global Transformation (12:1–15:13)
  2. p. 724
  1. 1. Introduction: The Thesis concerning the Motivation and Assessment of Praiseworthy Behavior (12:1–2)
  2. pp. 724-735
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  1. 2. The Elaboration of Sober Self-Assessment and the Exercise of Charismatic Gifts (12:3–8)
  2. pp. 736-754
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  1. 3. The Elaboration of Guidelines for Genuine Love (12:9–21)
  2. pp. 755-779
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  1. 4. Diatribe concerning Fulfilling Obligations to the Governing Authorities (13:1–7)
  2. pp. 780-803
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  1. 5. The Admonition to Fulfill Law through the Agape Meal (13:8–10)
  2. pp. 804-815
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  1. 6. The Admonition to Moral Alertness in the Last Days (13:11–14)
  2. pp. 816-828
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  1. 7. Exemplary Guidelines for the Weak and the Strong (14:1–12)
  2. pp. 829-852
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  1. 8. Exemplary Guidelines for Mutual Upbuilding in Pluralistic Congregations (14:13–23)
  2. pp. 853-873
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  1. 9. The Obligation to Follow Christ’s Example in Edifying Each Other (15:1–6)
  2. pp. 874-885
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  1. 10. Conclusion: Recapitulating the Inclusive Ethic That Will Contribute to the Mission of Global Transformation (15:7–13)
  2. pp. 886-899
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  1. V. The Peroratio (“Conclusion”) An Appeal for Cooperation in Missionary Activities in Jerusalem, Rome, and Spain (15:14–16:23)
  2. p. 900
  1. A. Recapitulation of Paul’s Missionary Calling and Strategy (15:14–21)
  2. pp. 900-917
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  1. B. The Report on Travel Plans and an Appeal to Participate in Present and Future Missionary Activities (15:22–33)
  2. pp. 918-940
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  1. C. The Recommendation of Phoebe as Missionary Patroness (16:1–2)
  2. pp. 941-948
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  1. D. Greetings and Commendations between Ministerial Leaders (16:3–16, 21–23)
  2. p. 949
  1. 1. Greetings to Congregational Leaders in Rome (16:3–16a)
  2. pp. 949-974
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  1. 2. Greetings from Congregational Leaders in Corinth and Elsewhere (16:16b, 21–23)
  2. pp. 975-984
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  1. The First Interpolation: The Church’s Campaign against Heretics (16:17–20a)
  2. pp. 985-996
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  1. The Second Interpolation: The Supersessionist Doxology (16:25–27)
  2. pp. 997-1011
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  1. E. The Epistolary Benediction (16:24, 20b)
  2. pp. 1012-1014
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  1. Glossary of Rhetorical and Exegetical Terms
  2. pp. 1015-1020
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 1021-1138
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  1. Designer's Notes
  2. pp. 1139-1146
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