For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ,[a] for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.”
Paul wrote this to the church in Rome during his third missionary journey. This was around 57AD in Corinth.
Epistle/Letter – written for purpose
Most Epistles follow this form
Salutation (name of author)
Addressee (name of recipients)
Prayer of thanksgiving
Rome was the largest cosmopolitan city and the central hub for culture and government in the first century AD. It was a melting pot of society, and a pre-existing meeting place for people. Rome attracted men and ideas from all over the known world of the time.
In the New Testament times Rome was in full flourish of growth and near its heights. Rome, much like Babylon, became a symbol of organised paganism and opposition toward Christianity.
In AD50, the Roman Emperor Claudius expelled the Jews from Rome due to their quarrels and riots against the Christians (Acts 18:2). The Romans at this time viewed that Christians were just a Jewish sect, and the Jews had a reputation and mindset of a Messiah who would come and liberate the nation of Israel from their overlords, The Romans.
In this letter, Paul is writing to the Roman church to introduce him, and to advise of his intention to visit them in the near future. As well, he writes to tell the Roman church the basis of faith and Christian theology.
Paul explains that the Gentile has just as much right to Faith as the Jew, and that there is nothing that we can do to afford this faith. Sanctification is through faith alone.
God’s justification through faith in Jesus is only way to salvation.
There is a tension described between the Jew and the gentile, and how God’s redemption is equal for both.