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The Catholic Study Bible A special version of the New American Bible, with a wealth of background information useful to Catholics.

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Commentary on Romans

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4, 1–25 :

This is an expanded treatment of the significance of Abraham's faith, which Paul discusses in Gal 3, 6–18 ; see the notes there.

4, 2–5 :

Verse 2 corresponds to v 4, and v 3 to v 5 . The Greek term here rendered credited means “made an entry.” The context determines whether it is credit or debit. Verse 8 speaks of “recording sin” as a debit. Paul's repeated use of accountants' terminology in this and other passages can be traced both to the Old Testament texts he quotes and to his business activity as a tentmaker. The commercial term in 15, 6 , “credited it to him,” reminds Paul in vv 7–8 of 32, 2 , in which the same term is used and applied to forgiveness of sins. Thus Paul is able to argue that Abraham's faith involved receipt of forgiveness of sins and that all believers benefit as he did through faith.

4, 3 :

2, 24 appears to conflict with Paul's statement. However, James combats the error of extremists who used the doctrine of justification through faith as a screen for moral self‐determination. Paul discusses the subject of holiness in greater detail than does James and beginning with ch 6 shows how justification through faith introduces one to the gift of a new life in Christ through the power of the holy Spirit.

4, 9 :

Blessedness: evidence of divine favor.

4, 15 :

Law has the negative function of bringing the deep‐seated rebellion against God to the surface in specific sins; see the note on 1, 18–32 .

4, 20 :

He did not doubt God's promise in unbelief: any doubts Abraham might have had were resolved in commitment to God's promise. Heb 11, 8–12 emphasizes the faith of Abraham and Sarah.

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