[b-greek] Re: Interpretation of Rom 4:1

From: Moon-Ryul Jung (moon@sogang.ac.kr)
Date: Wed Feb 13 2002 - 04:08:53 EST

Dear Glenn,
before closing this thread, let me comment on what you wrote:

But I am still hung up on conceding that a y/n question fits in this
for this reason: everywhere else there is a y/n question in Romans, it
postulates a proposition
1) which one might reasonably infer from the preceding discussion
2) with which Paul disagrees
3) against which Paul argues in the following discussion

Characteristic 1) does not apply to 4:1 -- the proposition of the y/n
question Richard has proposed Paul has already established as false in the
preceding discussion (especially 3:28), so that one cannot one would not
infer it from the preceding discussion.

The proposition which I think Paul tries to refute in Rom 4.1 is partly
answered but not fully in the last paragraph of chapter 3. The proposition
is related to Paul's question: Is God of the Jews only? Paul refutes
the proposition by referring to the Shema that God is one. But some Jews
might have still protested, sayin that God cannot be God of Gentiles
unless they become the children of Abraham. So, Paul asks: Shall we say
that we have found Abraham to be our forefather ACCORDING TO FLESH?
For my purpose this rendering is also OK: Shall we say that we have
found Abraham our forefather ACCORDING TO FLESH? In both cases KATA SARKA
is used adverbially.

So, what I think is the issue in Rom 4 is how Gentile believers are
connected to Abraham and thereby can belong to the people of God
without becoming Jews by keeping the works of the Law.

Because the above scenario makes sense and fits well to the New
on Paul, whose basic finding I believe, I still hold my position
even after your beautiful and clear presentation of the traditional

Moon R. Jung
Sogang Univ, Seoul, Korea

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