In the midst of a blogging hiatus, here are some observations about Paul’s purpose in writing Romans (a.k.a. a bit I cut out of my recent essay!).
- he wants them to understand their common need for salvation (chapters 1-3).
- he wants them to grasp their common access to this salvation through Abrahamic faith (chapters 4-5).
- he wants them to know their common dependence on the Spirit for the obedience of faith (chapters 6-8).
- he wants them to see their common membership of the same ‘tree’ of faith (chapters 9-11).
- he wants them to experience their common new life of unity and love (chapters 12-16).
- his desire throughout is that they would not only put up with (i.e. 15:1ff) but also invest in one another (15:24, 27, 30).