Romans has always been highly praised and it is, beyond question, the most dynamic of all New Testament letters, even as it was written at the climax of Paul’s apostolic career.  Early given the first place in the list of Paul’s letters. . .Romans still holds that place in our Bible in spite of the actual chronology of Paul’s letters.  But the contents of this great letter were not effectively used until the time of Augustine, and even this church father failed fully to appropriate the apostle’s teaching, although he crushed Pelagius in regard to the doctrines of sin and grace. . .Augustine died in 430, and centuries passed before the contents of Romans again became effective.  But, this time, they were fully utilized through Luther and by the Reformation of the sixteenth century. . .To this day, the truth laid down in Romans forms the Gibraltar basis of doctrine, teaching, and confession in the true evangelical church.

From: The Interpretation of St. Paul’s Epistle to the Romans by R. C. H. Lenski (Columbus: Wartburg Press, 1945), pp. 7-8.  Originally published in 1936.

R. C. H. Lenski (1864-1936) was a German-born American conservative Lutheran churchman, educator, and author.

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