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The Epistle to the Romans. General Introduction – New Testament Epistles. 1) Narrative(historical) books. Four gospels Book of Acts. 2) Educational Books. 14 Epistles of St Paul 7 Catholic Epistles. 3) One Prophetic Book. The Book of Revelations. What are Epistles?. What are Epistles?.

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the epistle to the romans

The Epistle to the Romans

General Introduction – New Testament Epistles

1 narrative historical books
1) Narrative(historical) books
  • Four gospels
  • Book of Acts
2 educational books
2) Educational Books
  • 14 Epistles of St Paul
  • 7 Catholic Epistles
3 one prophetic book
3) One Prophetic Book
  • The Book of Revelations
what are epistles1
What are Epistles?

Epistles are letters or messages that were sent to others in a written or verbal format.

  • Mainly discuss directions or teachings to a church or a particular group of people.
  • They are a big part of the church’s educational tool regardless of the time and era.

“For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope” (Roman 15:4)

place of the epistles in relation to the gospels and book of acts
Place of the Epistles in relation to the Gospels and book of Acts
  • Four Gospels – declaration of God to his people, through Jesus Christ.
  • Acts – History of the first church of believers, who followed the teachings and commandments of Jesus Christ.
  • Epistles – guided by the holy spirit to help believers make Jesus the center of their lives and faith.
reasons for writing the epistles
Reasons for writing the Epistles


  • Writing gives a precise explanation of ideas and teachings discussed when delivered to different churches.
  • A way of conserving the teachings and bringing the whole church together under the authority of the Holy Spirit.
reasons for writing the epistles1
Reasons for writing the Epistles


  • Spread of faith over the Roman empire made verbal teaching impossible.
  • Widespread Greek language, a language of theology and philosophy.
  • Transportation and roads were created by the Romans.
authors of the epistles
Authors of the Epistles
  • St Paul – 14 epistles
  • John -3 epistles
  • Peter - 2 epistles
  • James – 1 epistle
  • Jude (Judas Thaddeus) – 1 epistle
who followed jesus
Who followed Jesus?

St Paul





who was among the 12 disciples
Who was among the 12 disciples?

St Paul





st paul
St Paul
  • Jesus Christ taught St Paul directly without the need of anyone.
  • He wrote in 1 Corinthians 11:23 “For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you…”
agreement among the epistles
Agreement among the Epistles
  • All the epistles, excluding the Epistles to the Hebrews and the first epistle to John, begins with the name of the author and the name of the intended church or recipient.
  • Peter and Judas address all believers. They start and end with greetings to their recipients.
agreement among the epistles1
Agreement among the Epistles

The Epistles were on one accord in representing one Christ, one faith, one Baptism, one Salvation, one Comforter, and one Church to all believers.

inspired by the holy spirit
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
  • 1 Thessalonians 2:13 “For this reason we also thank God without ceasing, because when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you welcomed it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which also effectively works in you who believe”.
inspired by the holy spirit1
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
  • 1 Peter 1:12 “To them it was revealed that, not to themselves, but to us they were ministering the things which now have been reported to you through those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven—things which angels desire to look into”.
inspired by the holy spirit2
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
  • St. Peter witnessed for the epistles of St. Paul being among the Holy writings “and consider that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given to him, has written to you, as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which untaught and unstable people twist to their own destruction, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures”. (2 Peter 3:15-16)
content of the epistles
Content of the Epistles
  • The persons of God (Father, Son, Holy Spirit)
  • The nature of man and his/her duties towards the community
  • Human race, and the mutual duties of people among each other, based on the teachings of Christ.
  • Clergy and laymen
  • Hebrews
  • Wives and Husbands
  • Parents and Children
  • Slaves and masters
content of the epistles1
Content of the Epistles
  • Important teachings related to the salvation, which the disciples did not understand before the resurrection of Jesus.
  • Nature of the divinity
  • The redemptive death of Christ for our sins and his resurrection to resurrect us with him.
  • Preaching to the Gentiles
  • Plan of one church under God.
content of the epistles2
Content of The Epistles

It can be said that Jesus Christ, his divinity, humanity and redemption through his blood, is the center of these epistles.

make the best of studying the epistles
Make the best of studying the Epistles
  • The Holy Spirit guided the authors to write regarding certain matters according to church needs and necessity of discussion. As a result of this, the contents of the epistles are vitally important to all churches up till today.
  • In order to understand the contents of the epistles, it is important to know the circumstances and the context that the epistles were written under.
order of the epistles
Order of the Epistles
  • The Epistles were not put in historical order but according to the importance and the length of each one.
the pauline epistles
The Pauline Epistles
  • 1 Corinthians 15:10 “But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them – yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me.”
the pauline epistles1
The Pauline Epistles
  • Wrote his Epistles over 12 to 14 years (between 52-67 AD)
  • Books inspired by the Holy Spirit
  • Used the same greeting to begin all his epistles – “Peace and grace”
  • Used the help of someone to write his epistles because he had bad eyesight.
st paul s epistle to the romans
St Paul’s Epistle to the Romans
  • It is the sixth book written by St Paul in the New Testament in 58 AD.
  • The epistle ended with the phrase “Wrote to the people of Rome from Corinth by the hands of Phoebe, a servant of the church in Cenchrea.”
st paul s epistle to the romans1
St Paul’s Epistle to the Romans
  • Wrote the Epistle at the end of his third missionary trip (54-58 AD)
  • The epistle was sent with Phoebe, a servant (deaconess) of the church in Cenchrea from Corinth. “Commend to you our sister Phoebe, a servant of the church in Cenchrea. I ask you to receive her in the Lord in a way worthy of the saints and to give her any help she may need from you, for she has been a great help to many people, including me.”
how the church of rome was founded
How the church of Rome was founded
  • None of the apostles went to Rome and preached the word of God there
  • The church was founded by a number of believers(people who listened to Peter’s sermon on the Pentecost, people from Antioch, Ephesus, Corinth, Asia, Macedonia and Achaia, who listened to St Paul preach, moved between the Empires and went to Rome).
how st paul found out about the church in rome
How St Paul found out about the Church in Rome
  • Though Aquila and Priscilla whom he met in Corinth.
  • Roman 16:3-4 “Greet Priscilla and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus. They risked their lives for me. Not only I but all the churches of the Gentiles are grateful for them.”
members of the church of rome
Members of the Church of Rome

Formed by 2 groups:

  • Christians who were Jews
  • Christians who were of the Gentiles

The Jews always opposed the new faith while the Gentiles embraced it, hence there were more Christian Gentiles than Jews.

the purpose of writing this epistle
The Purpose of Writing this Epistle
  • Preparing for his visit
  • Presenting Christ
  • Supporting believers
subject and contents
Subject and Contents
  • Main subject – Justification by faith
  • 2 parts
    • First part – Theoretical or Doctrinal
    • Second part - Practical
theoretical part
Theoretical Part
  • Explanation of salvation
    • Gentiles
    • Jews
  • Salvation – being justified by faith in Jesus
  • Examples:
    • Abraham
    • Adam
theoretical part1
Theoretical Part
  • Justification through faith provides us peace with God
  • Justification:
    • Frees us from sin
    • Frees us from the authority of the Law
    • Gives us the Spirit of Sonship
theoretical part2
Theoretical Part
  • God’s chosen people
    • Fallen due to lack of faith
    • Have to become believers
  • Salvation is for everyone (Jews and Gentiles)
practical part
Practical Part
  • Applying justification to daily life
  • How?
    • “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship.” Romans 12:1
  • Teachings that benefit all Christians
  • Summary about himself and his work
  • Promised to visit
  • Asked for their prayers
  • Warned them of those who cause divisions
the problem of choice
The Problem of Choice
  • God chose people according to his will and their works
  • Examples:
    • Jacob and Esau
    • Pharaoh
  • “is God unjust? Not at all!”
the problem of choice1
The Problem of Choice
  • Motive:
    • To prove that God can accept the Gentiles
  • God wants everyone to be saved
the great city of rome
The Great City of Rome
  • Built by Romulus in 753 B.C. (He became the first king)
  • Capital of the Roman Empire
  • 1.2 million people at the time when the epistle was written
peter and rome
Peter and Rome
  • Is Peter the founder of the Church of Rome?
    • 4 Reasons
  • 1) Peter - gospel of circumcision (Jews)

Paul - gospel to the Gentiles

peter and rome1
Peter and Rome
  • 2) “It has always been my ambition to preach the gospel where Christ was not known, so that I would not be building on someone else’s foundation.” Romans 15:20
    • Paul later visited Rome and preached there
    • So Peter was not there between 61 and 63 A.D.
peter and rome2
Peter and Rome
  • 3) Chapter 16 contained greetings to many early Christians. Peter’s name was not on the list
  • 4) Addressing believers
    • “To all in Rome who are loved by God and called to be saints” Romans 1:7
    • “That is why I am so eager to preach the gospel also to you who are at Rome” Romans 1:15
more evidence
More Evidence
  • Before writing the Epistle:
    • 51 A.D. - Peter was still in Judea and he later went to Antioch
    • Claudius Caesar decreed all the Jews to leave Rome (49 – 52 A.D.)
    • Peter escorted his wife during missionary trips till 57 A.D.
more evidence1
More Evidence
  • After Writing the Epistle:
    • No sign that Peter was in Rome during 61-63 A.D. when Paul was there.
  • Church tradition agrees that St. Peter was martyred in Rome 67 A.D.
  • Peter did not go to Rome to preach or to found a church, as Paul was the founder