Paul's letter to the 'saints' in Rome is often seen as the most challenging and important of the Pauline epistles. This unit will provide you with tools to address the challenges involved in interpreting the content of the letter, so that you can assess its importance and relevance. In particular, the unit will explore the relationship between Paul's argument in the letter, the theological convictions that are articulated in that argument, and the social/cultural/political context of Paul's day. This will involve consideration of a variety of approaches to studying Paul, including historical-critical, rhetorical, and ideological perspectives. Given the importance of Romans in the development of later Christian theology, the unit will help you to answer the question of whether, and how Romans might continue to be formative text for thinking about contemporary Christian faith and practice.

Unit code: BN9060P

Unit status: Approved (New unit)

Points: 24.0

Unit level: Postgraduate Elective

Unit discipline: New Testament

Proposing College: Pilgrim Theological College

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Learning outcomes


Articulate a critically informed perspective on key exegetical, theological, and contextual questions relating to the interpretation of Romans


Assess alternative accounts of the nature of Paul's argument in Romans and its relationship to Paul's theology and the letter's social and cultural context


Describe, in conversation with secondary scholarship, your own hermeneutical approach to Romans and its relationship to issues of contemporary contextual relevance

Unit sequence

Prerequisite: 24 points in New Testament Studies


Lectures (pre-recorded and live) Exegesis Seminars Tutorials

Indicative Bibliography

  1. Byrne, Brendan, Romans. Sacra Pagina 6. Collegeville MN: Liturgical, 2007. [EBOOK AVAILABLE]
  2. Campbell, Douglas A. The Deliverance of God: An Apocalyptic Rereading of Justification in Paul. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2009.
  3. Gaventa, Beverly Roberts, ed. Apocalyptic Paul : Cosmos and Anthropos in Romans 5-8. Waco: Baylor University Press, 2013. EBOOK AVAILABLE
  4. Harink, Douglas. Resurrecting Justice: Reading Romans for the Life of the World. Downers Grove IL: IVP Academic, 2020
  5. Jervis, L. Ann. The Purpose of Romans. The Library of New Testament Studies. Sheffield: JSOT, 1991. EBOOK AVAILABLE.
  6. Jewett, Robert, Romans : A Commentary. Hermeneia. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2007. EBOOK AVAILABLE
  7. Käsemann, Ernst. Commentary on Romans. Translated by Geoffrey W. Bromily. London: SCM, 1980.
  8. Longenecker, Richard N. The Epistle to the Romans : A Commentary on the Greek Text. The New International Greek Testament Commentary. Grand Rapids MI. Eerdmans, 2016. EBOOK AVAILABLE
  9. Stowers, Stanley K. A Rereading of Romans : Justice, Jews, and Gentiles. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1994. EBOOK AVAILABLE
  10. Wu, Siu Fung. Suffering in Romans. Eugene OR: Pickwick, 2015. EBOOK AVAILABLE.
  11. Yeo, Khiok-khng (K.K.), ed. Navigating Romans Through Cultures: Challenging Readings by Charting a New Course. New York / London: T & T Clark International, 2004. EBOOK AVAILABLE


Type Description Word count Weight (%)
Essay - Exegetical Essay

Exegetical Essay (3200 words)

3200 40.0
Essay - Thematic Essay

Thematic Essay (4800 Words)

4800 60.0

Unit approved for the University of Divinity by Maggie Kappelhoff on 17 Sep, 2021

Unit record last updated: 2021-09-17 12:20:51 +1000