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Review of Biblical Literature Blog

Early Patristic Readings of Romans
Gaca, Kathy L. and L. L. Welborn, editors

London: T&T Clark, 2005 pp. vi + 237. $44.95

Series Information
Romans through History and Culture


Description: This volume traces the earliest receptions of Paul's Letter to the Romans, seeking to elucidate their hermeneutical strategies as they endorse, explain, construct, and rework Romans as a normative authority. These early patristic readings of Romans by Clement of Alexandria, Irenaeus, Origen, and others are pivotal. Long before Augustine and Luther they set formative interpretive principles upon which is built the imposing yet diverse edifice of subsequent interpretations and uses of Romans. By the end of the second century CE, the letters of Paul had established themselves as authoritative bearers of divine revelation. Yet, the task of tracing the earliest receptions of Paul's Letter to the Romans is challenging, because the thought world of the early Christians is remote, molten, largely oral, and as such hard to trace. The essays in this volume rise to the challenge by explicating significant aspects of Paul's reception among early Christian readers. They ask: How did these readers construct Paulís view of pagan and Christian relations? of the Gentiles? Of Jewish salvation? Of faith? Of resurrection? Of Christian Platonist principles? Contributors to this volume demonstrate specific ways in which Romans was appropriated to define the philosophy of Christian Platonism, a development which has had an enduring impact upon the creation of a Christian paideia.

Subjects: Bible, New Testament, Pauline Epistles, Romans, Literature, Methods, Historical Approaches, History, History of Interpretation

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Review by David A. Creech
Published 4/19/2008
Citation: David A. Creech, review of Kathy L. Gaca and L. L. Welborn, eds., Early Patristic Readings of Romans, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2008).


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