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Chapter One: Scripture, Theology, and Mission in the Letter to The Romans

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Chapter Summary

From the opening words of his letter to the Roman churches, Paul reveals himself to be both a "missionary theologian" and a "hermeneutic theologian". That is, Paul presents his apostolic mission as one that proclaims and interprets the gospel and Israel's scriptural traditions in the service of creating and sustaining communities called into existence by God's grace and love in Jesus Christ. The epistle to the Romans reflects the dynamic interplay of a number of influences and constraints on Paul's thought. A great deal of attention has been devoted to the use of Israel's scriptures by Paul and other New Testament authors. A few introductory remarks help to set Paul's reading of Isaiah in its wider cultural and historical context. This chapter discusses the extent to which the first recipients of Romans might have been able to understand Paul's frequent scriptural allusions and echoes.

Keywords: Isaiah; Israel's scriptural traditions; Jesus Christ; Paul; Roman churches; Romans; theology

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