Interesting statement in Romans 15

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rgprice
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Interesting statement in Romans 15

Post by rgprice » Thu Jan 07, 2021 12:29 pm

I just really noticed this, I assume its been noticed by many people for a long time.
18 For I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me to win obedience from the Gentiles, by word and deed, 19 by the power of signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God, so that from Jerusalem and as far around as Illyricum I have fully proclaimed the good news of Christ. 20 Thus I make it my ambition to proclaim the good news, not where Christ has already been named, so that I do not build on someone else’s foundation, 21 but as it is written,

“Those who have never been told of him shall see,
and those who have never heard of him shall understand.”


22 This is the reason that I have so often been hindered from coming to you. 23 But now, with no further place for me in these regions, I desire, as I have for many years, to come to you 24 when I go to Spain.
The way I read this, this implies to me that Paul is saying that the Word of Christ existed in Rome before it existed in Israel and the surrounding area. Paul didn't go to Rome because the word of Jesus was already known there. Yet Paul preached the word of Jesus in Israel and the surrounding area because it was not yet known there. Paul also says that he has no intention of preaching in Rome, just stopping to visit briefly, because there is no sense in preaching in Rome, where the word of Jesus is already well established, thus he plans to move on to Spain.

rgprice
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Re: Interesting statement in Romans 15

Post by rgprice » Fri Jan 08, 2021 12:10 am

Also, of course, Paul's letter to the Romans is the only Pauline letter to a group of people that he has never visited. So the fact that Romans is written to "saints" (Jesus believers) who already exist in Rome also indicates that Rome had a thriving population of Jesus worshipers by the 50s CE, long before any supposed trip of Paul to Rome.

davidmartin
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Re: Interesting statement in Romans 15

Post by davidmartin » Fri Jan 08, 2021 2:41 am

Interesting,
the "hindering" is that he wasn't welcome by pre-existing communities perhaps more than about building on someone elses foundation (what does that even mean, and do the 'someone elses' object to this building attempt)?
yet if your logic holds that Christ was unknown in Jerusalem that doesn't mean it wasn't in the whole of Isreal, only Jerusalem which fits the Galilean origin idea but .... there's a lot of variables here. His definitions are pretty vague

An interesting thing here is "not where Christ has already been named"
This choice of wording makes it sound like he does 'name Christ', but beyond a name says nothing else about him
That's why I think so many of the NT writings don't say much about him because Paul is setting up churches that don't
These churches later encounter groups that do know something about him which is where the gospels come from, yet they were Paul's prior opponents

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Ben C. Smith
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Re: Interesting statement in Romans 15

Post by Ben C. Smith » Fri Jan 08, 2021 6:19 am

davidmartin wrote:
Fri Jan 08, 2021 2:41 am
yet if your logic holds that Christ was unknown in Jerusalem that doesn't mean it wasn't in the whole of Isreal, only Jerusalem which fits the Galilean origin idea but .... there's a lot of variables here.
I think the focus in Romans 15.19 is both on the obedience specifically of the gentiles (ὑπακοὴν ἐθνῶν) and on the ambit (κύκλῳ). Paul has filled the circular arc from Jerusalem to Illyricum with his preaching to the gentiles. It is hyperbolic on its face.

John2
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Re: Interesting statement in Romans 15

Post by John2 » Sat Jan 09, 2021 5:31 pm

No, you're hyperbolic on your face. ;)

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Ben C. Smith
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Re: Interesting statement in Romans 15

Post by Ben C. Smith » Sat Jan 09, 2021 6:07 pm

John2 wrote:
Sat Jan 09, 2021 5:31 pm
No, you're hyperbolic on your face. ;)
Nuh uh!

John2
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Re: Interesting statement in Romans 15

Post by John2 » Sat Jan 09, 2021 6:10 pm

I couldn't resist. :D

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Ben C. Smith
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Re: Interesting statement in Romans 15

Post by Ben C. Smith » Sat Jan 09, 2021 6:19 pm

John2 wrote:
Sat Jan 09, 2021 6:10 pm
I couldn't resist. :D
Probably shoulda tried harder.... :D

John2
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Re: Interesting statement in Romans 15

Post by John2 » Sat Jan 09, 2021 7:15 pm

No, you probably shoulda tried harder.

Alright, I'll stop. :)

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MrMacSon
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Re: Interesting statement in Romans 15

Post by MrMacSon » Sat Jan 09, 2021 7:20 pm

rgprice wrote:
Thu Jan 07, 2021 12:29 pm

I just really noticed this, I assume its been noticed by many people for a long time.

Romans 15
18 For I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me to win obedience from the Gentiles, by word and deed, 19 by the power of signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God, so that from Jerusalem and as far around as Illyricum I have fully proclaimed the good news of Christ.1 20 Thus I make it my ambition to proclaim the good news, not where Christ has already been named, so that I do not build on someone else’s foundation, 21 but as it is written,

......“Those who have never been told of him shall see,
.......... and those who have never heard of him shall understand”.2

22 This is the reason that I have so often been hindered from coming to you.

23 But now, with no further place for me in these regions, I desire, as I have for many years, to come to you 24 when I go to Spain. I hope to see you while passing through and to have you assist me on my journey there, after I have enjoyed your company for a while. 25 Now, however, I am on my way to Jerusalem in the service of the Lord’s people there. 26 For Macedonia and Achaia were pleased to make a contribution for the poor among the Lord’s people in Jerusalem. 27 They were pleased to do it, and indeed they owe it to them.
.

The way I read this, this implies to me that Paul is saying that the Word of Christ existed in Rome before it existed in Israel and the surrounding area. Paul didn't go to Rome because the word of Jesus was already known there. Yet Paul preached the word of Jesus in Israel and the surrounding area because it was not yet known there. Paul also says that he has no intention of preaching in Rome, just stopping to visit briefly, because there is no sense in preaching in Rome, where the word of Jesus is already well established, thus he plans to move on to Spain.
1 Illyricum is where the former Yugoslavia was. From Jerusalem to there suggests a spatial spread and distribution similar to what some of the Egyptian mystery religions such as the cult of Serapis were achieving in the first century CE.

2 Isaiah 52:15 (and similar to Romans 16:25-6, and even Ephesians 3:5)

Rom 15:23 suggests he's being squeezed out of 'these regions'

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