The Expectation of Justification
1#sn Many interpreters see Rom 5:1 as beginning the second major division of the letter. Therefore, since we have been declared righteous by faith, we have#tc A number of important witnesses have the subjunctive ἔχωμεν (ecwmen, “let us have”) instead of ἔχομεν (ecomen, “we have”) in v. 1. Included in the subjunctive’s support are א* A B* C D K L 33 81 630 1175 1739* pm lat bo. But the indicative is not without its supporters: א1 B2 F G P Ψ 0220vid 104 365 1241 1505 1506 1739c 1881 2464 pm. If the problem were to be solved on an external basis only, the subjunctive would be preferred. Because of this, the “A” rating on behalf of the indicative in the UBS4 appears overly confident. Nevertheless, the indicative is probably correct. First, the earliest witness to Rom 5:1 has the indicative (0220vid, third century). Second, the first set of correctors is sometimes, if not often, of equal importance with the original hand. Hence, א1 might be given equal value with א*. Third, there is a good cross-section of witnesses for the indicative: Alexandrian (in 0220vid, probably א1 1241 1506 1881 al), Western (in F G), and Byzantine (noted in NA27 as pm). Thus, although the external evidence is strongly in favor of the subjunctive, the indicative is represented well enough that its ancestry could easily go back to the original. Turning to the internal evidence, the indicative gains much ground. (1) The variant may have been produced via an error of hearing (since omicron and omega were pronounced alike in ancient Greek). This, of course, does not indicate which reading was original – just that an error of hearing may have produced one of them. In light of the indecisiveness of the transcriptional evidence, intrinsic evidence could play a much larger role. This is indeed the case here. (2) The indicative fits well with the overall argument of the book to this point. Up until now, Paul has been establishing the “indicatives of the faith.” There is only one imperative (used rhetorically) and only one hortatory subjunctive (and this in a quotation within a diatribe) up till this point, while from ch. 6 on there are sixty-one imperatives and seven hortatory subjunctives. Clearly, an exhortation would be out of place in ch. 5. (3) Paul presupposes that the audience has peace with God (via reconciliation) in 5:10. This seems to assume the indicative in v. 1. (4) As C. E. B. Cranfield notes, “it would surely be strange for Paul, in such a carefully argued writing as this, to exhort his readers to enjoy or to guard a peace which he has not yet explicitly shown to be possessed by them” (Romans [ICC], 1:257). (5) The notion that εἰρήνην ἔχωμεν (eirhnhn ecwmen) can even naturally mean “enjoy peace” is problematic (ExSyn 464), yet those who embrace the subjunctive have to give the verb some such force. Thus, although the external evidence is stronger in support of the subjunctive, the internal evidence points to the indicative. Although a decision is difficult, ἔχομεν appears to be the authentic reading. peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice#tn Or “exult, boast.” in the hope of God’s glory. 3 Not#tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated because of differences between Greek and English style. only this, but we also rejoice in sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, 4 and endurance, character, and character, hope. 5 And hope does not disappoint, because the love of God#tn The phrase ἡ ἀγάπη τοῦ θεοῦ (Jh agaph tou qeou, “the love of God”) could be interpreted as either an objective genitive (“our love for God”), subjective genitive (“God’s love for us”), or both (M. Zerwick’s “general” genitive [Biblical Greek, §§36-39]; D. B. Wallace’s “plenary” genitive [ExSyn 119-21]). The immediate context, which discusses what God has done for believers, favors a subjective genitive, but the fact that this love is poured out within the hearts of believers implies that it may be the source for believers’ love for God; consequently an objective genitive cannot be ruled out. It is possible that both these ideas are meant in the text and that this is a plenary genitive: “The love that comes from God and that produces our love for God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us” (ExSyn 121). has been poured out#sn On the OT background of the Spirit being poured out, see Isa 32:15; Joel 2:28-29. in our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
6 For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 (For rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person perhaps someone might possibly dare to die.)#sn Verse 7 forms something of a parenthetical comment in Paul’s argument. 8 But God demonstrates his own love for us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, because we have now been declared righteous#tn Grk “having now been declared righteous.” The participle δικαιωθέντες (dikaiwqente") has been translated as a causal adverbial participle. by his blood,#tn Or, according to BDF §219.3, “at the price of his blood.” we will be saved through him from God’s wrath.#tn Grk “the wrath,” referring to God’s wrath as v. 10 shows. 10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of his Son, how much more, since we have been reconciled, will we be saved by his life? 11 Not#tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated because of differences between Greek and English style. only this, but we also rejoice#tn Or “exult, boast.” in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received this reconciliation.
The Amplification of Justification
12 So then, just as sin entered the world through one man and death through sin, and so death spread to all people#tn Here ἀνθρώπους (anqrwpou") has been translated as a generic (“people”) since both men and women are clearly intended in this context. because#tn The translation of the phrase ἐφ᾿ ᾧ (ef Jw) has been heavily debated. For a discussion of all the possibilities, see C. E. B. Cranfield, “On Some of the Problems in the Interpretation of Romans 5.12,” SJT 22 (1969): 324-41. Only a few of the major options can be mentioned here: (1) the phrase can be taken as a relative clause in which the pronoun refers to Adam, “death spread to all people in whom [Adam] all sinned.” (2) The phrase can be taken with consecutive (resultative) force, meaning “death spread to all people with the result that all sinned.” (3) Others take the phrase as causal in force: “death spread to all people because all sinned.” all sinned – 13 for before the law was given,#tn Grk “for before the law.” sin was in the world, but there is no accounting for sin#tn Or “sin is not reckoned.” when there is no law. 14 Yet death reigned from Adam until Moses even over those who did not sin in the same way that Adam (who is a type#tn Or “pattern.” of the coming one) transgressed.#tn Or “disobeyed”; Grk “in the likeness of Adam’s transgression.” 15 But the gracious gift is not like the transgression.#tn Grk “but not as the transgression, so also [is] the gracious gift.” For if the many died through the transgression of the one man,#sn Here the one man refers to Adam (cf. 5:14). how much more did the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one man Jesus Christ multiply to the many! 16 And the gift is not like the one who sinned.#tn Grk “and not as through the one who sinned [is] the gift.” For judgment, resulting from the one transgression,#tn The word “transgression” is not in the Greek text at this point, but has been supplied for clarity. led to condemnation, but#tn Greek emphasizes the contrast between these two clauses more than can be easily expressed in English. the gracious gift from the many failures#tn Or “falls, trespasses,” the same word used in vv. 15, 17, 18, 20. led to justification. 17 For if, by the transgression of the one man,#sn Here the one man refers to Adam (cf. 5:14). death reigned through the one, how much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one, Jesus Christ!
18 Consequently,#tn There is a double connective here that cannot be easily preserved in English: “consequently therefore,” emphasizing the conclusion of what he has been arguing. just as condemnation#tn Grk “[it is] unto condemnation for all people.” for all people#tn Here ἀνθρώπους (anqrwpou") has been translated as a generic (“people”) since both men and women are clearly intended in this context. came#tn There are no verbs in the Greek text of v. 18, forcing translators to supply phrases like “came through one transgression,” “resulted from one transgression,” etc. through one transgression,#sn One transgression refers to the sin of Adam in Gen 3:1-24. so too through the one righteous act#sn The one righteous act refers to Jesus’ death on the cross. came righteousness leading to life#tn Grk “righteousness of life.” for all people. 19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man#sn Here the one man refers to Adam (cf. 5:14). many#tn Grk “the many.” were made sinners, so also through the obedience of one man#sn One man refers here to Jesus Christ. many#tn Grk “the many.” will be made righteous. 20 Now the law came in#tn Grk “slipped in.” so that the transgression#tn Or “trespass.” may increase, but where sin increased, grace multiplied all the more, 21 so that just as sin reigned in death, so also grace will reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.