Front Page Titles (by Subject) A TRANSLATION OF CALVIN'S VERSION OF THE EPISTLE TO THE ROMANS. - Commentaries on the Epistles of Paul to the Romans
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A TRANSLATION OF CALVIN’S VERSION OF THE EPISTLE TO THE ROMANS. - John Calvin, Commentaries on the Epistles of Paul to the Romans 
Commentaries on the Epistles of Paul to the Romans, trans. from the original Latin by the Rev. John Owen (Edinburgh: Calvin Translation Society, 1849).
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A TRANSLATION OF CALVIN’S VERSION OF THE EPISTLE TO THE ROMANS.
1Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, a called Apostle, chosen for2 the gospel of God, which he had before promised by his Prophets3 in the holy Scriptures, concerning his Son, who came4 from the seed of David according to the flesh; declared the Son of God in power, through the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection5 from the dead, even Jesus Christ our Lord; through whom we have received grace and apostleship for the obedience6 of faith among all nations, for his name’s sake; among7 whom ye are also the called of Jesus Christ; To all of you who are at Rome, beloved by God, called saints: grace to you, and peace from God the Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.
8First indeed I give thanks to my God, through Jesus Christ, for you all, because your faith is proclaimed through the whole9 world. For my witness is God, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that I continually make mention of10 you, in all my prayers, requesting that by some means a prosperous journey may some time be given me, through God’s11 will, to come to you: for I desire to see you, that I may impart12 to you some spiritual gift to confirm you; that is, that we may mutually partake of encouragement through mutual faith, even yours and mine.
13And I would not that you should not know, brethren, that I have often proposed to come to you, (and have been hitherto hindered,) that I might have some fruit among you as also14 among other nations. Both to the Greeks and to the barbarians,15 both to the wise and to the foolish, am I a debtor; so that, as far as I can, I am ready to preach the gospel to you16 also who are at Rome; for I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, since it is the power of God for salvation to every one17 who believes, to the Jew first, then to the Greek; for the righteousness of God is in it revealed from faith to faith, as it is written, “The just by his faith shall live.”
18Revealed also is the wrath of God from heaven, against all the impiety and injustice of men, who unjustly suppress the truth19 of God; because what may be known of God, is manifest in20 them, for God has manifested it to them; since his invisible things are seen from the creation of the world, being understood by his works, even his eternal power and divinity, so that they are21 inexcusable; inasmuch as when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, nor were thankful; but became vain in their22 thoughts, and darkened was their foolish heart: when they23 thought themselves wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into the likeness of an image, into that of a corruptible man and of birds and of quadrupeds and of reptiles.
24Therefore God gave them up to the lusts of their own hearts for uncleanness, that they might degrade their bodies among25 themselves, who had transformed the truth respecting God into falsehood, and worshipped and adored the creature above26 the Creator; who is blessed for ever; Amen:—Therefore, I say, God gave them up to disgraceful passions; for their women turned the natural habit into that which is contrary to27 nature; and in like manner the men also, having left off the natural use of the woman, burned with mutual lust, one towards another, males working filthiness with males, and receiving in themselves the reward due to them for their going astray.
28And as they chose not to retain the knowledge of God, God gave them up to a reprobate mind, to do things not becoming;29 that they might be full of all unrighteousness, wickedness, lust, avarice, malignity, being filled with envy, murder, strife, guile,30 perversity, being whisperers, calumniators, haters of God, villanous, disdainful, haughty, inventors of evils, disobedient to31 parents, without understanding, insociable, void of natural32 affections, truce-breakers, merciless; Who, when they knew the judgment of God, that they who do such things are worthy of death, not only do them, but approve of those who do them.
1Therefore inexcusable art thou, O man, who judgest; for in what thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself, for2 the same things doest thou who judgest. Now we know that God’s judgment is according to truth on those who do such things.
3And thinkest thou, O man, who judgest those who do such things and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment4 of God? Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and gentleness, not knowing that the goodness of God5 leads thee to repentance? but according to thy hardness and a heart that cannot repent, thou treasurest for thyself wrath for the day of wrath and of the revelation of the righteous judgment6 of God; who will render to every one according to his7 works,—to those indeed, who by perseverance in doing good,8 seek glory and honour and immortality, eternal life; but to those who are contentious and disobedient to the truth and obey9 unrighteousness, there shall be indignation and wrath: tribulation and anguish shall be on every soul of man who doeth evil,10 the Jew first, then the Greek; but glory and honour and peace shall be to every one who works good, to the Jew first, then11 to the Greek; since there is no respect of persons with God.
12For whosoever have without the law sinned, shall also without the law perish; but whosoever have under the law sinned,13 shall by the law be judged: for not the hearers of the law are just before God; but they who do the law shall be justified.14 When indeed the Gentiles, who have not the law, do by nature the things of the law, they, having not the law, are a law to15 themselves; who show the work of the law written on their hearts, their conscience at the same time attesting, and their16 thoughts accusing or excusing each other, in the day in which God will judge the secrets of men, according to my gospel, through Jesus Christ.
17Behold, thou art named a Jew, and restest in the law and18 gloriest in God, and knowest his will and approvest of things19 excellent, being instructed from the law, and art confident that thou thyself art a leader to the blind, a light to those who are20 in darkness, an instructor to the foolish, a teacher to the ignorant, because thou hast the form of knowledge and of the truth21 according to the law: Yet thou who teachest another, dost not teach thyself; thou who preachest “steal not,” stealest; thou22 who sayest, “commit no adultery,” committest adultery; thou23 who hatest idols, committest sacrilege; thou who gloriest in the24 law, by transgressing the law dishonourest God; for the name of God, as it is written, is reproached on your account among the nations.
25For circumcision indeed profits, if thou keep the law; but if thou be a transgressor of the law, thy circumcision is turned26 into uncircumcision. If then the uncircumcision keep the righteousness of the law, shall not his uncircumcision be counted27 for circumcision? and shall not he who is by nature uncircumcision judge thee, (if he keep the law,) who by the letter and28 circumcision art a transgressor of the law? For not he who is a Jew openly, is a Jew; nor is that circumcision which is openly29 in the flesh: but he who is one in secret is a Jew; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, not in the letter; the praise of whom is not from men, but from God.
1What then is the privilege of the Jew, or what is the benefit2 of circumcision? Much in every way; and first indeed, because to them have been intrusted the oracles of God.
3What indeed if some have not believed? Shall their unbelief4 render void the faithfulness of God? By no means; but let God be true, and every man false, as it is written, “That thou mightest be justified in thy words, and overcome when5 thou art judged.” But if our unrighteousness commend the righteousness of God, what shall we say? Is God unjust who6 executes wrath? (according to man I speak:) by no means;7 for how then shall God judge the world? If indeed the truth of God has through my falsehood redounded to his glory, why8 still am even I judged as asinner,—and why not (as we are reproached, and as some declare that we say) “Let us do evils, that good things may come?” the judgment of whom is just.
9What then? do we excel? Not at all; for we have before brought a charge against both Jews and Greeks, that they are10 all under sin; as it is written, “There is none righteous, not11 indeed one; there is none who understands, there is none who12 seeks God; all have turned aside; they have become together unprofitable; there is none who doeth kindness, no, not even13 one: An open grave is their throat; with their tongues have14 they dealt deceitfully: The poison of asps is under their lips:15 Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: Swift are their16 feet to shed blood; ruin and misery are in their ways; and17 the way of peace have they not known: There is no fear of18 God before their eyes.”
19Now we know that whatever the law says, it speaks to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and20 the whole world may become guilty before God: because no flesh shall by the works of the law be justified before him, since by the law is the knowledge of sin.
21But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested,22 being approved by the law and the Prophets,—even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ, which is to all and upon all who believe: there is indeed no difference; for23 all have sinned, and are become destitute of the glory of God;24and they are justified gratuitously by his grace through the redemption25 which is in Christ Jesus; whom God has set forth as a propitiatory through faith in his blood, for a demonstration of26 his righteousness on account of the remission of sins, which before existed through the forbearance of God,—for a demonstration of his righteousness, at this time, that he might be just and the justifier of him who believes in Jesus.
27Where then is glorying? It is excluded: by what law? of28 works? no; but by the law of faith. We then conclude, that29 by faith is man justified without the works of the law. Is he the God of the Jews only? and not also of the Gentiles? Yes,30 of the Gentiles also; since one is God, who will justify the circumcision by faith and the uncircumcision through faith.31 Do we then make void the law by faith? By no means; but we confirm the law.
1What shall we then say, that Abraham, our father according2 to the flesh, had obtained? For if Abraham was by works justified, he has what he may glory in, but not before God.3 But what saith the Scripture? “Abraham believed God, and4 it was imputed to him for righteousness.” To him indeed who works the reward is not imputed as a grace, but as a debt:5 but to him who works not, but believes on him who justifies the ungodly, imputed is his faith for righteousness.
6As David also describes the blessedness of the man, to7 whom God imputes righteousness without works, “Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are8 covered; blessed is the man to whom God has not imputed sin.”
9Was then this blessedness on the circumcision only, or also on the uncircumcision? for we say, that imputed to Abraham10 was faith for righteousness: how then was it imputed? when he was in circumcision, or in uncircumcision? not in circumcision,11 but in uncircumcision; and he received the sign of circumcision as a seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had in uncircumcision, that he might be the father of all who believe while in uncircumcision, in order that to them also12 righteousness might be imputed,—and the father of the circumcision, not to those who are in circumcision only, but who walk in the footsteps of that faith which our father Abraham had in uncircumcision.
13It was not indeed by the law that the promise was to Abraham and to his seed, that he should be the heir of the world,14 but through the righteousness of faith. For if they who are of the law are heirs, then made void is faith, and abolished15 is the promise. For the law causeth wrath: but where no law16 is, there is also no transgression. It is therefore by faith, that it might be through grace, in order that the promise might be sure to all the seed, not to that only which is of the law, but17 which also is of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all, (as it is written, “The father of many nations have I made thee,”) before God whom he believed, who quickens the dead,18 and calls things which are not, as though they were: Who against hope believed through hope, that he would be the father of many nations, according to what had been said, “So19 shall thy seed be.” And being not in faith weak, he considered not his own body, now dead, when he was nearly an20 hundred years old, nor the dead womb of Sarah; nor did he indeed search into the promise of God through unbelief, but21 was strengthened by faith, giving glory to God; and being assuredly persuaded, that what he had promised he was also22 able to perform: and it was therefore imputed to him for righteousness.
23Now it was not written on his account only, that it was imputed24 to him: but also on our account, to whom it shall be imputed, even to us who believe on him, who raised Jesus our25 Lord from the dead; who was delivered for our offences and raised for our justification.
1Being then justified, we have peace with God through our2 Lord Jesus Christ; through whom we have had access by faith to this grace in which we stand, and glory in the hope3 of the glory of God: and not only so, but we glory also in4 tribulations; knowing that tribulation produces patience;5 and patience, experience; and experience, hope: moreover, hope makes us not ashamed, because the love of God is diffused in our hearts by the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.
6For Christ, when we were as yet as to time weak, died for7 the ungodly. Hardly indeed for the just will any one die; but for the good perhaps some one may even venture to die:8 but God confirms his love towards us, because when we were9 yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having been now justified by his blood, shall we be saved by him from wrath.10 If indeed when we were enemies we were reconciled to God by11 the death of his Son, much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life: and not only so, but we also glory in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.
12Wherefore as by one man sin entered into the world, and through sin death; and so over all men has death spread, since13 all have sinned; (for until the law sin was in the world; but14 sin is not imputed when there is no law. Yet reign did sin from Adam to Moses, even over them who had not sinned after the likeness of the transgression of Adam, who is the15 figure of him that was to come. But not as the offence, so also the gift: for if through the offence of one many died, much more has the grace of God, and the gift of God through16 grace, abounded unto many. And not as through one who had sinned, so the gift; for judgment was from one offence to condemnation, but the gift is from many offences unto justification.17 For if by the offence of one death reigned through one, much more shall they who have received abundance of grace, and the gift of righteousness, reign in life through one,18 Jesus Christ.) Therefore as through the offence of one judgment came on all men to condemnation, so also through the justification of one, the gift comes to all men to the justification19 of life: for as through the disobedience of one man many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of one many shall be made righteous.
20But the law intervened, that the offence might abound: but where sin abounded, grace has superabounded; that as sin has reigned through death, so grace also might reign through righteousness unto eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
1What then shall we say? Shall we continue in sin that2 grace may abound? By no means: we who have died to sin,3 how shall we still live in it? Know ye not, that we all, who have been baptized into Jesus Christ, have been baptized into4 his death? Buried then have we been with him through baptism unto death, that as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we also should walk in newness of5 life: for if we have been ingrafted in the likeness of his death,6 doubtless we shall also be partakers of his resurrection; knowing this, that our old man was crucified together with him, that abolished might be the body of sin, so that we may no7 longer serve sin: for he who has died, has been freed from sin.
8Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall9 also live with him; knowing that Christ, having been raised10 from the dead, dies no more, death no more reigns over him: for that he died, he once for sin died; and that he lives, he lives to God.
11So also regard ye yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but12 alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Let not sin then13 reign in your mortal body, so as to obey it in its lusts. Neither present your members, as weapons of unrighteousness, to sin; but present yourselves to God, as alive from the dead,14 and your members, as weapons of righteousness, to God: for sin shall not rule over you, since ye are not under the law, but under grace.
15What then? Shall we sin, because we are not under the16 law, but under grace? By no means: know ye not that to whom ye present yourselves servants for obedience, ye are the17 servants of him whom ye obey, whether of sin for death, or of obedience for righteousness? But thanks to God; for ye have been the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the18 heart the form of doctrine into which you were delivered; and having been freed from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.
19I speak what is human on account of the infirmity of your flesh: As ye have presented your members to uncleanness and to iniquity for iniquity, so also now present your members servants20 to righteousness for holiness: for when ye were the servants of sin, ye were free from righteousness.
21What fruit therefore had you then in those things, of which22 ye are now ashamed? for their end is death; but now, having been freed from sin and made servants to God, ye have your23 fruit, holiness, and your end, eternal life: for the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
1Know ye not, brethren, (for to those who know the law I2 speak,) that the law rules over a man as long as he lives. For a woman, subject to a husband, is bound by the law to a living husband; but if the husband die, she is loosed from the law of3her husband. While then the husband is living, she shall be called an adulteress, if she be united to another man: but if the husband be dead, she is freed from his law, so that she is not an adulteress by marrying another man.
4And thus, my brethren, are ye also dead to the law through the body of Christ, that hereafter ye should be united to another, even to him who has been raised from the dead, that ye5 might bring forth fruit to God. For when ye were in the flesh, the emotions of sin which are through the law wrought in6 your members to bring forth fruit to death: but now ye are loosed from the law, having died to that by which we were held, that we might serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.
7What then shall we say? Is the law sin? By no means: yet sin I knew not except through the law; for concupiscence I8 had not known, had not the law said, “Thou shalt not lust.” And the occasion being taken, sin through the commandment9 wrought in me every concupiscence. Sin indeed without the law is dead: and I lived some time without the law; but when10 the commandment came, sin revived, and I died; and the commandment, which was for life, was found by me to be11 unto death: for sin, taking occasion through the commandment,12 led me astray, and through it slew me. So then the law indeed is holy, and the commandment holy and just and good.
13Did then what is good become death to me? By no means: but sin, that it might appear to be sin, wrought death in me through that which is good, in order that sin through the commandment might become above measure sinful.
14We indeed know that the law is spiritual; but I am carnal,15 sold under sin: for what I work I know not; since what I16 would, this I do not, but what I hate, this I do. If then, what I would not, this I do, I consent to the law of God, that it is17 good: and now, it is no longer I who do it, but sin which18 dwells in me.1 I indeed know that no good dwells in me, that is,19 in my flesh; for to will is present with me, but to perform what is good I find not; since the good I would I do not; but the evil20 I would not, that I do. But if what I would not, that I do, it is21 no longer I who do it, but sin which dwells in me. I find then a law that while I am willing to do good, evil lies in wait for me.
22I consent then to the law of God according to the inner23 man: but I see another law in my members, resisting the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin which is24 in my members. Miserable man am I! who shall rescue me25 from this body of death?—I give thanks to God through Jesus Christ our Lord: so then with the mind I serve myself the law of God, but with the flesh the law of sin.
1There is now then no condemnation to those who are in2 Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me3 free from the law of sin and of death: for it being impossible for the law, because it was weak through the flesh, God, having sent his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, even by a4 sin-offering condemned sin in the flesh; that the justification of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
5For they who are after the flesh, think of the things of the flesh; but they who are after the Spirit, of the things of the6 Spirit. Doubtless the thinking of the flesh is death; but the7 thinking of the Spirit is life and peace: because the thinking of the flesh is enmity against God; for to the law of God it is8 not subject, nor can it be; they therefore who are in the flesh, cannot please God.
9But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you; but if any one has not the Spirit10 of Christ, he is not his. But if Christ is in you, the body indeed is dead with respect to sin, but the spirit is life with regard11 to righteousness. If then the Spirit of him, who raised Jesus from the dead, dwells in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will quicken your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.
12So then, brethren, debtors we are, not to the flesh, that we13 may live after the flesh; for if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die; but if by the Spirit ye mortify the deeds of the flesh, ye14 shall live: for as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God.
15Ye have not indeed received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the spirit of adoption, through16 whom we cry, Abba, Father: the very Spirit itself testifies17 together with our spirit, that we are the sons of God: and if sons, then heirs; the heirs of God, and co-heirs with Christ; if indeed we suffer with him, that we may also be glorified together.18 I indeed judge, that the afflictions of this time are not to be compared to the future glory which shall be revealed to us.
19For the intent expectation of the creation waits for the revelation20 of the sons of God; for to vanity has the creation been subjected, not willingly, but on account of him who has subjected21 it in hope; because the creation itself shall also be reclaimed from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty22 of the sons of God; for we know that the whole creation23 groans and labours in pain to this day: and not only so, but we ourselves also, who have the beginnings of the Spirit, even we ourselves do groan in ourselves, waiting for our adoption,24 the redemption of our body; for by hope are we saved: but hope that is seen is not hope; for what one sees, how can he25 hope for it? If then for what we see not we hope, we wait for it in patience.1
26And in like manner the Spirit also assists our infirmities; for what to pray for as we ought we know not; but the Spirit27 himself intercedes for us with groanings unutterable: and he who searches the hearts knows the mind of the Spirit; because he intercedes according to God’s will for the saints.
28We further know, that to those who love God all things co-operate for good, even to those who are called according to29his purpose: for whom he has foreknown, he has also predetermined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might30 be the first-born among many brethren; and whom he has predetermined, them has he also called; and whom he has called, them has he also justified; and whom he has justified, them has he also glorified.
31What then shall we say to these things? If God be for us,32 who can be against us? He who spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?
33Who shall bring an accusation against the elect of God? God34 is he who justifies. Who is he who condemns? Christ is he who died; nay, rather who has been raised, who also is at the right hand of the Father, and who intercedes for us.
35Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger,36 or sword? As it is written, “For thee we die daily, we are37 counted as sheep destined for the slaughter:” but in all these things we do more than overcome through him who has loved38 us. For I am persuaded, that neither death nor life, neither angels nor principalities nor powers, neither things present39 nor things future, neither height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus.
1The truth I say in Christ, I lie not, my conscience bearing me2 a testimony together with the Holy Spirit, that I have a great3 grief and a continual sorrow in my heart; for I myself could wish to be an anathema from Christ for my brethren, my4 kindred according to the flesh; who are Israelites, whose are the adoption and the glory and the covenants and the lawgiving5 and the worship and the promises; whose are the fathers, and from whom is Christ according to the flesh, who is above all, God blessed for ever. Amen.
6Not however as though God’s word has failed; for not all7 who are from Israel are Israelites; nor are they who are the seed of Abraham, on this account all sons; but, “In Isaac8 shall thy seed be called;” that is, They who are the sons of the flesh, are not the sons of God; but they who are the sons9 of the promise shall be counted for a seed. For the word of promise is this, “According to this time shall I come, and10 there shall be a son to Sarah.” And not only he, but Rebecca11 also, who had conceived by one, our father Isaac; for when the children were not yet born, and had done neither good nor evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand,12 not by works, but through him who calls, it was said to her,13 “The elder shall serve the younger;” according to what is written, “Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.”
14What then shall we say? Is there unrighteousness with15 God? By no means: for he says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion16 on whom I will have compassion.” It is not then of him who wills, nor of him who runs; but of God who shows17 mercy. For the Scripture saith to Pharaoh, “For this have I raised thee, that I might show in thee my power, and that18 my name might be proclaimed through the whole earth.” So then on whom he wills he has mercy, and whom he wills he hardens.
19Thou wilt then say to me, Why does he still blame? His will,20 who has resisted it? But, O man, who art thou who contendest in judgment with God? Does the earthen vessel say to21 the potter, Why hast thou thus made me? Has not the former of the clay power, from the same mass, to make one vessel to22 honour, another to dishonour? And what if God, willing to show his wrath and to make known his power, has endured23 with much patience the vessels of wrath, prepared for destruction; that he might also make known the riches of his grace towards the vessels of mercy, which he has foreprepared for24 glory? Whom he has also called, even us, not only from the25 Jews, but also from the Gentiles; as he says in Hosea, “I will call them my people, who is not a people, and her beloved,26 who is not beloved: and it shall be in the place where it was said to them, ‘Not my people are ye;’ there shall they be27 called the sons of the living God:” and Isaiah exclaims respecting Israel, “Though the number of the sons of Israel28 should be as the sand of the sea, yet only a remnant shall be saved; for the work he will finish and shorten, because a shortened29 work will the Lord do on the earth;” as Isaiah had also said before, “Except the Lord of hosts had left us a seed, we should have been as Sodom and made like to Gomorrha.”
30What then shall we say? That the Gentiles, who did not follow after righteousness, have obtained righteousness, even31 the righteousness which is by faith: but Israel, by following after the law of righteousness, has not attained to the law of 32 righteousness. Why? Because [they followed after it] not by faith, but as it were by works; for they have stumbled at the33 stone of stumbling, according to what is written, “Behold, I lay in Sion a stone of stumbling and a rock of offence:” and, “Every one who believes in him shall not be ashamed.”
1Brethren, the kind desire of my heart, and prayer to God2 for Israel, is for their salvation. For I bear to them a testimony, that they have a zeal for God; but not according to3 knowledge: for being ignorant of the righteousness of God, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, they have not4 submitted to the righteousness of God; for the end of the law is Christ for righteousness to every one who believes.
5For Moses describes the righteousness which is by the law,6 “The man who shall do these things shall live by them:” but the righteousness, which is by faith, saith thus, “Say not in thine heart, ‘Who shall ascend into heaven?’ this is to bring7 down Christ; or, ‘Who shall descend into the deep?’ that is to bring up Christ again from the dead:” but what does it say?8 “Nigh thee is the word, in thy mouth and in thy heart:” this9 is the word of faith which we preach,—That if thou wilt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and believe in thy heart that10 God has raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved; for with the heart we believe to righteousness, and with the mouth11 confession is made to salvation; for the Scripture says, “Every12 one who believes in him shall not be ashamed:” for there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek; for the same is the13 Lord of all, being rich to all who call on him; for, “whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
14How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? and15 how shall they preach except they be sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who proclaim peace,16 who proclaim good things!” But all have not obeyed the gospel; for Isaiah says, “Who has believed our report?”
17Faith then is by hearing, and hearing through the word of18 God. But I say, Have they not heard? Yes, verily, “Into all the earth has gone forth their sound, and into the ends of19 the world their words.” But I say, Has not Israel known? First, Moses says, “I will provoke them to jealousy by them who are not a people, and by a foolish nation will I irritate20 them:” then Isaiah is bold and says, “I have been found by those who sought me not, I have been made manifest to those21 who inquired not for me;” but of Israel he says, “Daily have I stretched forth my hands to a people disobedient and gainsaying.”
1I say then, Hath God cast away his people? By no means; for I also am an Israelite, from the seed of Abraham, from the2 tribe of Benjamin. God has not cast away his people whom he has foreknown. Know ye not what the Scripture saith as3 to Elias? how he appeals to God against Israel, saying, “Lord, thy prophets have they killed, and thy altars have they pulled4 down, and I am left alone, and they seek my life?” But what says the answer of God to him? “I have reserved for myself seven thousand men, who have not bowed the knee to the5 image of Baal.” So now, even at this time, there is a remnant6 according to the election of grace: and if through grace, then no longer by works, otherwise grace is no longer grace; but if by works, then no longer by grace, otherwise work is no longer work.
7What then? That which Israel seeks, he has not obtained; but election has obtained it, and the rest have been blinded,8 as it is written, “God has given them the spirit of compunction, eyes so as not to see, and ears so as not to hear,” even to9 this day; and David says, “Be their table for a snare and for a trap, and for a stumbling, and for a recompense to them;10 darkened be their eyes so as not to see, and their back ever bow thou down.”
11I say then, Have they stumbled so as wholly to fall? By no means; but by their fall salvation is come to the Gentiles12 in order to provoke them to jealousy. But if their fall be the riches of the world, and their diminution the riches of the13 Gentiles, how much more their fulness? Even to you Gentiles do I speak,—As far, doubtless, as I am the Apostle of the Gentiles,14 I make illustrious my office, if by any means I shall provoke15 to emulation my flesh, and shall save some of them. If indeed their rejection be the reconciliation of the world, what will be their resumption but life from the dead?
16Now if the first-fruits be holy, even so the lump; and if the17 root be holy, so also the branches. If indeed some of the branches have been broken off, and thou, a wild olive, hast been ingrafted instead of them, and hast become a partaker of the18 root and fatness of the olive, glory not against the branches;19 but if thou gloriest, it is not thou who bearest the root, but the root thee. Thou wilt then say, “Broken off have been the20 branches, that I might be ingrafted.” Be it so: for unbelief have they been broken off, and thou by faith standest; be not21 high-minded, but fear: for if God spared not the natural branches, beware lest he should not spare thee.
22See then the kindness and the severity of God; towards those indeed who have fallen, severity; but towards thee kindness, if thou continuest in his kindness; otherwise thou also shalt be23 cut off: and they, if they remain not in unbelief, shall be ingrafted; 24 for God is able to ingraft them again. For if thou hast been cut off from the wild olive, which is so by nature, and hast contrary to nature been ingrafted in the true olive, much more shall they, according to nature, be ingrafted in their own olive.
25I would not indeed, brethren, that you should be ignorant of this mystery, lest you should be proud among yourselves, that blindness has in part happened to Israel, until the fulness of26 the Gentiles shall come in: and so all Israel shall be saved, as it is written, “Come from Sion shall the Deliverer, and shall27 turn away impieties from Jacob; and this shall be my covenant28 with them, when I shall take away their sins.” As to the gospel they are indeed enemies on your account; but as to29 election they are beloved on account of the fathers; for without30 repentance are the gifts and the calling of God. As indeed ye also formerly believed not God, but have now obtained31 mercy through their unbelief; so also they have not now believed, because ye have obtained mercy, that they may also32 obtain mercy: for God has shut up all under unbelief, that he might show mercy to all.
33O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and of the knowledge of God! how incomprehensible are his judgments34 and unsearchable his ways! Who indeed has known the mind35 of the Lord? or who has been to him a counsellor? or, who36 has first given to him, and it shall be rendered to him again? for from him and through him and for him are all things: to him be glory for ever. Amen.
1I beseech you then, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God,2as your rational service. And conform not yourselves to this world, but be ye transformed by the renovation of your mind, that ye may prove what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
3I indeed say, through the grace which has been given to me, to every one of you, that he be not above measure wise, beyond what he ought to be wise; but that he be wise unto sobriety, as God has to each distributed the measure of faith.4 For as in one body we have many members, but all the members have not the same office; so we, being many, are one5 body in Christ, and severally members of one another. Now6 having gifts differing according to the grace given to us, whether7 prophecy, let us use it according to the analogy of faith; or8 ministry, in ministering; or the teacher, in teaching; or the exhorter, in exhortation; or the giver, in simplicity; or the president, with care; or he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.
9Let love be undissembled: turn away from evil, cleave to 10 what is good. Be ready with brotherly love to love one another,11 anticipating each other with honour. In business be not12 slothful, in spirit fervent, serving the time; Rejoicing in hope,13 patient in tribulation, persevering in prayer, distributing to the14 necessities of the saints, following hospitality. Bless those who15 persecute you; bless and pray for no evil. Rejoice with those16 who rejoice, and weep with those who weep, having the same feeling towards one another, not thinking arrogantly of yourselves, but accommodating yourselves to humble things: be17 not wise in your own esteem. To no man render evil for evil,18 providing honest things before all men. If it be possible, as far as you can, cultivate peace with all men.
19Avenge not yourselves, beloved; but give place to wrath; for it is written, “Mine is vengeance, and I will repay, saith20 the Lord.” If then thine enemy hungers, feed him; if he thirsts, give him drink: for by so doing, thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. Be not overcome by evil, but overcome evil by good.
1Let every soul be subject to the supreme powers; for there is no power but from God; and the powers that be have been2 ordained by God. He therefore who resists the power, resists the ordination of God; and they who resist, shall for themselves receive judgment.
3For princes are not for terror to good but to evil works: wouldest thou then not fear the power? Do good, and from it4 thou shalt have praise; for he is God’s minister to thee for good: but if thou doest any evil, fear; for not in vain does he bear the sword, since he is God’s minister, an avenger for wrath5 against those who do evil. It is therefore necessary to be subject, not only on account of wrath, but also on account of conscience.
6For this reason also pay tributes, since they are God’s ministers,7 constantly attending to this very thing. Render then to all what is due; to whom tribute is due, tribute; to whom custom, custom; to whom fear, fear; to whom honour, honour.
8To no one owe ye anything, except to love one another; for he9 who loves another, has fulfilled the law; for this, “Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not bear false testimony, Thou shalt not covet, and if there be any other10 precept, it is comprehended in this saying, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.” Love works no evil to a neighbour; the fulfilling then of the law is love.
11Moreover, as ye know the time, that the hour is, when we ought to have awakened already from sleep, (for nearer is now12 our salvation than when we believed,) the night is far advanced, and the day has approached; let us then cast away the works13 of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light: let us walk decently as in the day, not in revellings and drunkenness, not in chamberings and lasciviousness, not in contention and envy;14 but put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and have no care for the flesh for the sake of its lusts.
1Now him who is weak in faith receive, not for the debatings of questions.
2Let him indeed who believes eat everything; but he who is3 weak, eats herbs. Let not him who eats, despise him who abstains; and let not him who abstains, condemn him who eats,4 since God has received him. Who art thou who judgest the servant of another? to his own Lord he stands or falls: he shall indeed stand, for God is able to make him stand.
5One indeed esteems a day above a day; but another esteems every day alike: let every one be fully persuaded in his own mind.
6He who regards a day, regards it for the Lord; and he who regards not a day, regards it not for the Lord: he who eats, eats for the Lord, for he gives thanks to God; and he who abstains,7 abstains for the Lord, and gives thanks to God: for no8 one of us lives to himself, and no one dies to himself; for whether we live, we live to the Lord, and whether we die, we die to the Lord; whether then we live or die, we are the Lord’s.9 For to this end Christ both died, and rose and lived again, that he might be the Lord both of the dead and of the living.
10But thou,1 why dost thou judge thy brother? or also thou,2 why dost thou despise thy brother? for we must all stand before11 the tribunal of Christ; for it is written, “Live do I, saith the Lord; to me shall bow every knee, and every tongue shall12 confess to God.” Every one of us then shall give an account13 of himself to God. Let us therefore no more judge one another; but rather judge this, that no occasion of falling or an offence be given to a brother.
14I know and am persuaded, that in the Lord Jesus nothing is in itself unclean: but he who regards anything unclean, to him15 it is unclean. But if on account of meat thy brother is grieved, thou no longer walkest consistently with love: by thy meat16 destroy not him for whom Christ died. Let not then your17 good be subject to the evil-speaking of men: for the kingdom of God is not meat and drink, but righteousness and peace and18 joy through the Holy Spirit. For he who in these things serves Christ, is acceptable to God and approved by men. 19 Let us then follow the things of peace and of mutual edification:20 on account of meat destroy not the work of God.
All things are indeed pure; but evil it is for man to eat with21 offence. It is good not to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor to do anything, by which thy brother may fall, or be offended, or be weakened.
22Hast thou faith? Have it for thyself before God: happy is he who condemns not himself in that which he examines: but he who is undecided, if he eat, is condemned; for he eats not in faith: and whatsoever is not from faith is sin.
1Now we who are able ought to bear the infirmities of the2 unable, and not to please ourselves: let indeed each of us3 please his neighbour for good, to his edification. For even Christ did not please himself; but, as it is written, “The reproaches4 of those who reproached thee, fell upon me.” For whatsoever things have been before written, have been written for our instruction, that through the patience and consolation5 of the Scriptures we might have hope: and may the God of patience and of consolation grant you to have the same mind6 towards one another, according to Christ Jesus, that ye may unanimously, with one mouth, glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
7Receive ye then one another, as Christ has received us, to the8 glory of God. Now I say, that Jesus Christ became the minister of the circumcision for the truth of God, to confirm the9 promises made to the fathers: the Gentiles also ought to glorify God for his mercy, as it is written, “On this account will I confess to thee among the Gentiles, and to thy name will I10 sing:” and again he says, “Exult, ye Gentiles, with his people;”11 and further, “Praise the Lord, all ye Gentiles, and praise him12 together, all ye nations:” and again Isaiah says, “There shall be the root of Jesse, and he who shall rise up to reign over the13 Gentiles; in him shall the Gentiles hope.” And may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.
14But I am persuaded, my brethren, even I myself, concerning you, that ye are also yourselves full of goodness, having been filled with all knowledge, being able to admonish one another.15 The more boldly, however, have I written to you, my brethren, in part, as putting you in mind, on account of the16 grace given to me by God, that I should be the minister of Christ to the Gentiles, consecrating the gospel of Christ, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Spirit.
17I have therefore reason for glorying, through Jesus Christ,18 in the things of God. I will not indeed dare to speak anything of those things which Christ has not done through me, as to19 the obedience of the Gentiles, by word and work, through the power of signs and of wonders, through the power of the Holy Spirit; so that from Jerusalem, and round about to Illyricum,20 I have spread more fully1 the gospel of Christ; thus endeavouring to preach the gospel, not where Christ was named, that I21 might not build on another’s foundation; but, as it is written, “They to whom it has not been declared concerning him, shall see; and they who have not heard, shall understand.”
22I have on this account also been often hindered from coming23 to you: but now, having a place no longer in these regions,24 and having a desire for many years to come to you, when I go to Spain, I shall come to you. For I hope that when I go there I shall see you, and that I shall be brought on my way thither by you, if however I shall first be in part filled by a converse with you.
25But I am now going to Jerusalem to minister to the saints:26 for it has pleased Macedonia and Achaia to make a contribution27 to the saints who are at Jerusalem: it has pleased them, I say, and their debtors they are; for if the Gentiles have partaken of their spiritual things, they ought also to minister28 to them in temporal things. When therefore I shall have performed this, and have sealed to them this fruit, I shall go by29 you to Spain: and I know that when I come to you, I shall come in the fulness of the blessing of the gospel of Christ.
30Now I beseech you, brethren, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, that ye strive with me in your prayers31 for me to God, that I may be delivered from the unbelieving in Judea, and that my service, undertaken for Jerusalem, may32 be acceptable to the saints; that with joy I may come to you by the will of God, and may, together with you, be refreshed. And the God of peace be with you all. Amen.
1Now I commend to you Phœbe, our sister, who is a deaconess2 of the Cenchrean Church; that ye receive her in the Lord, as it becomes saints, and that ye assist her in whatsoever matter she may have need of you; for she has been a helper to many, and to me also.
3Salute Prisca and Aquila, [my fellow-workers in Christ4 Jesus, who for my life laid down their own necks, to whom not I alone give thanks, but also all the Churches of the5 Gentiles,] and the Church in their house.
Salute Epenetus, my beloved, who is the first-fruit of Achaia6 in the Lord. Salute Mary, who has laboured much with us.7 Salute Andronicus and Junia, my kinsmen and my fellow-captives, who are celebrated among the Apostles, and who were8 before me in Christ. Salute Amplias, my beloved in the9 Lord. Salute Urban, our helper in Christ, and Stachys, my10 beloved. Salute Apelles, approved in Christ. Salute those11 who are of the family of Aristobulus. Salute Herodion, my kinsman. Salute those of the family of Narcissus, who are in12 the Lord. Salute Tryphena and Tryphosa, who have laboured much in the Lord. Salute the beloved Persis, who has13 laboured much in the Lord. Salute Rufus, chosen in the Lord,14 and his mother and mine. Salute Asyncritus, Phlegon, Hermas, Patrobas, Hermes, and the brethren who are with them.15 Salute Philologus and Julia, Nereus and his sister, and Olympas,16 and all the saints who are with them. Salute one another with an holy kiss. The Churches of Christ salute you.
17But I beseech you, brethren, to observe those who stir up divisions and offences, contrary to the doctrine which ye have18 learnt, and to avoid them: for they, who are such, serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by courteous19 language and flattery deceive the hearts of the simple. Your obedience indeed has been published to all: I am therefore glad on your account; but I wish you to be wise for good, and20 simple for evil. And the God of peace shall shortly bruise Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen.
21Salute you do Timothy, my fellow-worker, and Lucius and22 Jason and Sosipater, my kinsmen. Salute you do I Tertius,23 who have written this Epistle, in the Lord. Salute you does Gaius, my host and of the whole Church. Salute you does24 Erastus, the treasurer of the city, and Quartus a brother. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.
25Now to him who is able to confirm you according to my gospel, even the preaching of Jesus Christ according to the26 revelation of the mystery, which was hid in former ages, but has been now made known, and through the prophetic Scriptures proclaimed, according to the appointment of the eternal God, for the obedience of faith among all nations;—to the only wise God, through Jesus Christ, be glory for ever. Amen.
Sent to the Romans, from Corinth, by Phœbe, a deaconess of the Cenchrean Church.
end of the new translation.
[1 ]Here is repeated in a different way what had been before stated, only the reference before was to the weakness of good, but here to the power of evil.
[1 ]To exhibit the meaning of this passage according to what is advanced in a note in pp. 306, 307, it shall be presented here in lines,—
We may indeed consider “every creature” in verse 22 as referring to every renewed creature then living, (except the Apostles and those endowed with the extraordinary gifts of the Spirit,) and all such from the beginning of the world. In this case, “to this day” has a striking import. All God’s servants from the beginning had been groaning under the body of sin, and not only they, but even those who had enjoyed the first outpouring of the Spirit, and had been endued with extraordinary gifts. The gifts of the Spirit, however abundant, did not free any from the bondage of corruption, from the body of sin; but this was an object of hope, for which they were to wait. The context, before and after, clearly shows that the present condition of God’s people is the subject.—Ed.
[1 ]The Jewish convert.
[2 ]The Gentile believer.
[1 ]“I have supplemented,” is what Calvin approves: the gospel had already been partially preached, but Paul had filled up or supplied what was deficient.