New Revised Standard Version
1 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, set apart for the
gospel of God, 2 which he promised beforehand through his prophets in the holy
scriptures, 3 the gospel concerning his Son, who was descended from David
according to the flesh 4 and was declared to be Son of God with power
according to the spirit of holiness by resurrection from the dead, Jesus
Christ our Lord, 5 through whom we have received grace and apostleship to
bring about the obedience of faith among all the Gentiles for the sake of his
name, 6 including yourselves who are called to belong to Jesus Christ,
7 To all God's beloved in Rome, who are called to be saints:
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your
faith is proclaimed throughout the world. 9 For God, whom I serve with my
spirit by announcing the gospel of his Son, is my witness that without ceasing
I remember you always in my prayers, 10 asking that by God's will I may
somehow at last succeed in coming to you. 11 For I am longing to see you so
that I may share with you some spiritual gift to strengthen you – 12 or rather
so that we may be mutually encouraged by each other's faith, both yours and
mine. 13 I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that I have often intended
to come to you (but thus far have been prevented), in order that I may reap
some harvest among you as I have among the rest of the Gentiles. 14 I am a
debtor both to Greeks and to barbarians, both to the wise and to the foolish
15 – hence my eagerness to proclaim the gospel to you also who are in Rome.
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel; it is the power of God for salvation to
everyone who has faith, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 17 For in it
the righteousness of God is revealed through faith for faith; as it is
written, "The one who is righteous will live by faith."
An indictment of human wickedness and injustice
18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and
wickedness of those who by their wickedness suppress the truth. 19 For what
can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. 20
Ever since the creation of the world his eternal power and divine nature,
invisible though they are, have been understood and seen through the things he
has made. So they are without excuse; 21 for though they knew God, they did
not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their
thinking, and their senseless minds were darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise,
they became fools; 23 and they exchanged the glory of the immortal God for
images resembling a mortal human being or birds or four-footed animals or
24 Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the
degrading of their bodies among themselves, 25 because they exchanged the
truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than
the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.
26 For this reason God gave them up to degrading passions. Their women
exchanged natural intercourse for unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the
men, giving up natural intercourse with women, were consumed with passion for
one another. Men committed shameless acts with men and received in their own
persons the due penalty for their error.
28 And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a
debased mind and to things that should not be done. 29 They were filled with
every kind of wickedness, evil, covetousness, malice. Full of envy, murder,
strife, deceit, craftiness, they are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters,
insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, rebellious toward parents, 31
foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. 32 They know God's decree, that those
who practice such things deserve to die – yet they not only do them but even
applaud others who practice them.
All are accountable before God for their works
1 Therefore you have no excuse, whoever you are, when you judge others; for in
passing judgment on another you condemn yourself, because you, the judge, are
doing the very same things. 2 You say, "We know that God's judgment on those
who do such things is in accordance with truth." 3 Do you imagine, whoever you
are, that when you judge those who do such things and yet do them yourself,
you will escape the judgment of God? 4 Or do you despise the riches of his
kindness and forbearance and patience? Do you not realize that God's kindness
is meant to lead you to repentance? 5 But by your hard and impenitent heart
you are storing up wrath for yourself on the day of wrath, when God's
righteous judgment will be revealed. 6 For he will repay according to each
one's deeds: 7 to those who by patiently doing good seek for glory and honor
and immortality, he will give eternal life; 8 while for those who are
self-seeking and who obey not the truth but wickedness, there will be wrath
and fury. 9 There will be anguish and distress for everyone who does evil, the
Jew first and also the Greek, 10 but glory and honor and peace for everyone
who does good, the Jew first and also the Greek. 11 For God shows no
12 All who have sinned apart from the law will also perish apart from the law,
and all who have sinned under the law will be judged by the law. 13 For it is
not the hearers of the law who are righteous in God's sight, but the doers of
the law who will be justified. 14 When Gentiles, who do not possess the law,
do instinctively what the law requires, these, though not having the law, are
a law to themselves. 15 They show that what the law requires is written on
their hearts, to which their own conscience also bears witness; and their
conflicting thoughts will accuse or perhaps excuse them 16 on the day when,
according to my gospel, God, through Jesus Christ, will judge the secret
thoughts of all.
Does being a Jew relieve one from accountability to God?
17 But if you call yourself a Jew and rely on the law and boast of your
relation to God 18 and know his will and determine what is best because you
are instructed in the law, 19 and if you are sure that you are a guide to the
blind, a light to those who are in darkness, 20 a corrector of the foolish, a
teacher of children, having in the law the embodiment of knowledge and truth,
21 you, then, that teach others, will you not teach yourself? While you preach
against stealing, do you steal? 22 You that forbid adultery, do you commit
adultery? You that abhor idols, do you rob temples? 23 You that boast in the
law, do you dishonor God by breaking the law? 24 For, as it is written, "The
name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you."
25 Circumcision indeed is of value if you obey the law; but if you break the
law, your circumcision has become uncircumcision. 26 So, if those who are
uncircumcised keep the requirements of the law, will not their uncircumcision
be regarded as circumcision? 27 Then those who are physically uncircumcised
but keep the law will condemn you that have the written code and circumcision
but break the law. 28 For a person is not a Jew who is one outwardly, nor is
true circumcision something external and physical. 29 Rather, a person is a
Jew who is one inwardly, and real circumcision is a matter of the heart – it
is spiritual and not literal. Such a person receives praise not from others
but from God.
God's integrity in the covenant with Israel
1 Then what advantage has the Jew? Or what is the value of circumcision? 2
Much, in every way. For in the first place the Jews were entrusted with the
oracles of God. 3 What if some were unfaithful? Will their faithlessness
nullify the faithfulness of God? 4 By no means! Although everyone is a liar,
let God be proved true, as it is written,
"So that you may be justified in your words,
and prevail in your judging."
5 But if our injustice serves to confirm the justice of God, what should we
say? That God is unjust to inflict wrath on us? (I speak in a human way.) 6 By
no means! For then how could God judge the world? 7 But if through my
falsehood God's truthfulness abounds to his glory, why am I still being
condemned as a sinner? 8 And why not say (as some people slander us by saying
that we say), "Let us do evil so that good may come"? Their condemnation is
The universality of God's judgment
9 What then? Are we any better off? No, not at all; for we have already
charged that all, both Jews and Greeks, are under the power of sin, 10 as it
"There is no one who is righteous, not even one;
11 there is no one who has understanding,
there is no one who seeks God.
12 All have turned aside, together they have become worthless;
there is no one who shows kindness,
there is not even one."
13 "Their throats are opened graves;
they use their tongues to deceive."
"The venom of vipers is under their lips."
14 "Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness."
15 "Their feet are swift to shed blood;
16 ruin and misery are in their paths,
17 and the way of peace they have not known."
18 "There is no fear of God before their eyes."
19 Now we know that whatever the law says, it speaks to those who are under
the law, so that every mouth may be silenced, and the whole world may be held
accountable to God. 20 For "no human being will be justified in his sight" by
deeds prescribed by the law, for through the law comes the knowledge of sin.
The revelation of God's judgment
21 But now, apart from law, the righteousness of God has been disclosed, and
is attested by the law and the prophets, 22 the righteousness of God through
the faith of Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction, 23
since all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God; 24 they are now
justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ
Jesus, 25 whom God put forward as a sacrifice of atonement by his blood,
effective through faith. He did this to show his righteousness, because in his
divine forbearance he had passed over the sins previously committed; 26 it was
to prove at the present time that he himself is righteous and that he
justifies the one who has faith in Jesus.
27 Then what becomes of boasting? It is excluded. By what law? By that of
works? No, but by the law of faith. 28 For we hold that a person is justified
by faith apart from works prescribed by the law. 29 Or is God the God of Jews
only? Is he not the God of Gentiles also? Yes, of Gentiles also, 30 since God
is one; and he will justify the circumcised on the ground of faith and the
uncircumcised through that same faith. 31 Do we then overthrow the law by this
faith? By no means! On the contrary, we uphold the law.
Abraham as a test case
1 What then are we to say was gained by Abraham, our ancestor according to the
flesh? 2 For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast
about, but not before God. 3 For what does the scripture say? "Abraham
believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness." 4 Now to one who
works, wages are not reckoned as a gift but as something due. 5 But to one who
without works trusts him who justifies the ungodly, such faith is reckoned as
righteousness. 6 So also David speaks of the blessedness of those to whom God
reckons righteousness apart from works:
7 "Blessed are those whose iniquities are forgiven,
and whose sins are covered;
8 blessed is the one against whom the Lord will not reckon sin."
9 Is this blessedness, then, pronounced only on the circumcised, or also on
the uncircumcised? We say, "Faith was reckoned to Abraham as righteousness."
10 How then was it reckoned to him? Was it before or after he had been
circumcised? It was not after, but before he was circumcised. 11 He received
the sign of circumcision as a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith
while he was still uncircumcised. The purpose was to make him the ancestor of
all who believe without being circumcised and who thus have righteousness
reckoned to them, 12 and likewise the ancestor of the circumcised who are not
only circumcised but who also follow the example of the faith that our
ancestor Abraham had before he was circumcised.
13 For the promise that he would inherit the world did not come to Abraham or
to his descendants through the law but through the righteousness of faith. 14
If it is the adherents of the law who are to be the heirs, faith is null and
the promise is void. 15 For the law brings wrath; but where there is no law,
neither is there violation.
The example of Abraham's faith
16 For this reason it depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on
grace and be guaranteed to all his descendants, not only to the adherents of
the law but also to those who share the faith of Abraham (for he is the father
of all of us, 17 as it is written, "I have made you the father of many
nations") – in the presence of the God in whom he believed, who gives life to
the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist. 18 Hoping
against hope, he believed that he would become "the father of many nations,"
according to what was said, "So numerous shall your descendants be." 19 He did
not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was already as good
as dead (for he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the
barrenness of Sarah's womb. 20 No distrust made him waver concerning the
promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, 21
being fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised. 22
Therefore his faith "was reckoned to him as righteousness." 23 Now the words,
"it was reckoned to him," were written not for his sake alone, 24 but for ours
also. It will be reckoned to us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord
from the dead, 25 who was handed over to death for our trespasses and was
raised for our justification.
The nature of justification in Christ
1 Therefore, since we are justified by faith, we have peace with God through
our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have obtained access to this grace in
which we stand; and we boast in our hope of sharing the glory of God. 3 And
not only that, but we also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering
produces endurance, 4 and endurance produces character, and character produces
hope, 5 and hope does not disappoint us, because God's love has been poured
into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.
6 For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.
7 Indeed, rarely will anyone die for a righteous person – though perhaps for a
good person someone might actually dare to die. 8 But God proves his love for
us in that while we still were sinners Christ died for us. 9 Much more surely
then, now that we have been justified by his blood, will we be saved through
him from the wrath of God. 10 For if while we were enemies, we were reconciled
to God through the death of his Son, much more surely, having been reconciled,
will we be saved by his life. 11 But more than that, we even boast in God
through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received
Adam and Christ
12 Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death came
through sin, and so death spread to all because all have sinned – 13 sin was
indeed in the world before the law, but sin is not reckoned when there is no
law. 14 Yet death exercised dominion from Adam to Moses, even over those whose
sins were not like the transgression of Adam, who is a type of the one who was
15 But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died through
the one man's trespass, much more surely have the grace of God and the free
gift in the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, abounded for the many. 16 And
the free gift is not like the effect of the one man's sin. For the judgment
following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many
trespasses brings justification. 17 If, because of the one man's trespass,
death exercised dominion through that one, much more surely will those who
receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness exercise
dominion in life through the one man, Jesus Christ.
18 Therefore just as one man's trespass led to condemnation for all, so one
man's act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all. 19 For
just as by the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the
one man's obedience the many will be made righteous. 20 But law came in, with
the result that the trespass multiplied; but where sin increased, grace
abounded all the more, 21 so that, just as sin exercised dominion in death, so
grace might also exercise dominion through justification leading to eternal
life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Life in Christ requires obedience
1 What then are we to say? Should we continue in sin in order that grace may
abound? 2 By no means! How can we who died to sin go on living in it? 3 Do you
not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized
into his death? 4 Therefore we have been buried with him by baptism into
death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the
Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.
5 For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly
be united with him in a resurrection like his. 6 We know that our old self was
crucified with him so that the body of sin might be destroyed, and we might no
longer be enslaved to sin. 7 For whoever has died is freed from sin. 8 But if
we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9 We
know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no
longer has dominion over him. 10 The death he died, he died to sin, once for
all; but the life he lives, he lives to God. 11 So you also must consider
yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.
12 Therefore, do not let sin exercise dominion in your mortal bodies, to make
you obey their passions. 13 No longer present your members to sin as
instruments of wickedness, but present yourselves to God as those who have
been brought from death to life, and present your members to God as
instruments of righteousness. 14 For sin will have no dominion over you, since
you are not under law but under grace.
15 What then? Should we sin because we are not under law but under grace? By
no means! 16 Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as
obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which
leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness? 17 But thanks
be to God that you, having once been slaves of sin, have become obedient from
the heart to the form of teaching to which you were entrusted, 18 and that
you, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness. 19 I
am speaking in human terms because of your natural limitations. For just as
you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to greater and
greater iniquity, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness for
20 When you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. 21
So what advantage did you then get from the things of which you now are
ashamed? The end of those things is death. 22 But now that you have been freed
from sin and enslaved to God, the advantage you get is sanctification. The end
is eternal life. 23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is
eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
The law's poisonous interaction with sin
1 Do you not know, brothers and sisters – for I am speaking to those who know
the law – that the law is binding on a person only during that person's
lifetime? 2 Thus a married woman is bound by the law to her husband as long as
he lives; but if her husband dies, she is discharged from the law concerning
the husband. 3 Accordingly, she will be called an adulteress if she lives with
another man while her husband is alive. But if her husband dies, she is free
from that law, and if she marries another man, she is not an adulteress.
4 In the same way, my friends, you have died to the law through the body of
Christ, so that you may belong to another, to him who has been raised from the
dead in order that we may bear fruit for God. 5 While we were living in the
flesh, our sinful passions, aroused by the law, were at work in our members to
bear fruit for death. 6 But now we are discharged from the law, dead to that
which held us captive, so that we are slaves not under the old written code
but in the new life of the Spirit.
7 What then should we say? That the law is sin? By no means! Yet, if it had
not been for the law, I would not have known sin. I would not have known what
it is to covet if the law had not said, "You shall not covet." 8 But sin,
seizing an opportunity in the commandment, produced in me all kinds of
covetousness. Apart from the law sin lies dead. 9 I was once alive apart from
the law, but when the commandment came, sin revived 10 and I died, and the
very commandment that promised life proved to be death to me. 11 For sin,
seizing an opportunity in the commandment, deceived me and through it killed
me. 12 So the law is holy, and the commandment is holy and just and good.
13 Did what is good, then, bring death to me? By no means! It was sin, working
death in me through what is good, in order that sin might be shown to be sin,
and through the commandment might become sinful beyond measure.
Even the disobedient acknowledge the rightness of the law's verdict
14 For we know that the law is spiritual; but I am of the flesh, sold into
slavery under sin. 15 I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what
I want, but I do the very thing I hate. 16 Now if I do what I do not want, I
agree that the law is good. 17 But in fact it is no longer I that do it, but
sin that dwells within me. 18 For I know that nothing good dwells within me,
that is, in my flesh. I can will what is right, but I cannot do it. 19 For I
do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I do. 20 Now if
I do what I do not want, it is no longer I that do it, but sin that dwells
21 So I find it to be a law that when I want to do what is good, evil lies
close at hand. 22 For I delight in the law of God in my inmost self, 23 but I
see in my members another law at war with the law of my mind, making me
captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. 24 Wretched man that I
am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? 25 Thanks be to God through
Jesus Christ our Lord!
So then, with my mind I am a slave to the law of God, but with my flesh I am a
slave to the law of sin.
Life in the Spirit
1 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2
For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the
law of sin and of death. 3 For God has done what the law, weakened by the
flesh, could not do: by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh,
and to deal with sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, 4 so that the just
requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the
flesh but according to the Spirit. 5 For those who live according to the flesh
set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to
the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. 6 To set the mind on
the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. 7 For
this reason the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God; it does not
submit to God's law – indeed it cannot, 8 and those who are in the flesh
cannot please God.
9 But you are not in the flesh; you are in the Spirit, since the Spirit of God
dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong
to him. 10 But if Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin,
the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11 If the Spirit of him who
raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ from the dead
will give life to your mortal bodies also through his Spirit that dwells in
12 So then, brothers and sisters, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live
according to the flesh – 13 for if you live according to the flesh, you will
die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will
live. 14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. 15 For
you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have
received a spirit of adoption. When we cry, "Abba! Father!" 16 it is that very
Spirit bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if
children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ – if, in fact,
we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him.
Suffering, and hope in God's promise
18 I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing
with the glory about to be revealed to us. 19 For the creation waits with
eager longing for the revealing of the children of God; 20 for the creation
was subjected to futility, not of its own will but by the will of the one who
subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be set free from its
bondage to decay and will obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of
God. 22 We know that the whole creation has been groaning in labor pains until
now; 23 and not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits
of the Spirit, groan inwardly while we wait for adoption, the redemption of
our bodies. 24 For in hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope.
For who hopes for what is seen? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we
wait for it with patience.
26 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to
pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for
words. 27 And God, who searches the heart, knows what is the mind of the
Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of
28 We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who
are called according to his purpose. 29 For those whom he foreknew he also
predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be
the firstborn within a large family. 30 And those whom he predestined he also
called; and those whom he called he also justified; and those whom he
justified he also glorified.
31 What then are we to say about these things? If God is for us, who is
against us? 32 He who did not withhold his own Son, but gave him up for all of
us, will he not with him also give us everything else? 33 Who will bring any
charge against God's elect? It is God who justifies. 34 Who is to condemn? It
is Christ Jesus, who died, yes, who was raised, who is at the right hand of
God, who indeed intercedes for us. 35 Who will separate us from the love of
Christ? Will hardship, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness,
or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written,
"For your sake we are being killed all day long;
we are accounted as sheep to be slaughtered."
37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved
us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor
rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor
depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the
love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
The certainty of God's purposes toward Israel
1 I am speaking the truth in Christ – I am not lying; my conscience confirms
it by the Holy Spirit – 2 I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my
heart. 3 For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ
for the sake of my own people, my kindred according to the flesh. 4 They are
Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the
giving of the law, the worship, and the promises; 5 to them belong the
patriarchs, and from them, according to the flesh, comes the Messiah, who is
over all, God blessed forever. Amen.
God's right to choose
6 It is not as though the word of God had failed. For not all Israelites truly
belong to Israel, 7 and not all of Abraham's children are his true
descendants; but "It is through Isaac that descendants shall be named for
you." 8 This means that it is not the children of the flesh who are the
children of God, but the children of the promise are counted as descendants. 9
For this is what the promise said, "About this time I will return and Sarah
shall have a son." 10 Nor is that all; something similar happened to Rebecca
when she had conceived children by one husband, our ancestor Isaac. 11 Even
before they had been born or had done anything good or bad (so that God's
purpose of election might continue, 12 not by works but by his call) she was
told, "The elder shall serve the younger." 13 As it is written,
"I have loved Jacob,
but I have hated Esau."
14 What then are we to say? Is there injustice on God's part? By no means! 15
For he says to Moses,
"I will have mercy on whom I have mercy,
and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion."
16 So it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God who shows mercy. 17
For the scripture says to Pharaoh, "I have raised you up for the very purpose
of showing my power in you, so that my name may be proclaimed in all the
earth." 18 So then he has mercy on whomever he chooses, and he hardens the
heart of whomever he chooses.
19 You will say to me then, "Why then does he still find fault? For who can
resist his will?" 20 But who indeed are you, a human being, to argue with God?
Will what is molded say to the one who molds it, "Why have you made me like
this?" 21 Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump
one object for special use and another for ordinary use? 22 What if God,
desiring to show his wrath and to make known his power, has endured with much
patience the objects of wrath that are made for destruction; 23 and what if he
has done so in order to make known the riches of his glory for the objects of
mercy, which he has prepared beforehand for glory – 24 including us whom he
has called, not from the Jews only but also from the Gentiles? 25 As indeed he
says in Hosea,
"Those who were not my people I will call 'my people,'
and her who was not beloved I will call 'beloved.'"
26 "And in the very place where it was said to them, 'You are not my people,'
there they shall be called children of the living God."
27 And Isaiah cries out concerning Israel, "Though the number of the children
of Israel were like the sand of the sea, only a remnant of them will be saved;
28 for the Lord will execute his sentence on the earth quickly and
decisively." 29 And as Isaiah predicted,
"If the Lord of hosts had not left survivors to us,
we would have fared like Sodom
and been made like Gomorrah."
What went wrong?
30 What then are we to say? Gentiles, who did not strive for righteousness,
have attained it, that is, righteousness through faith; 31 but Israel, who did
strive for the righteousness that is based on the law, did not succeed in
fulfilling that law. 32 Why not? Because they did not strive for it on the
basis of faith, but as if it were based on works. They have stumbled over the
stumbling stone, 33 as it is written,
"See, I am laying in Zion a stone that will make people stumble, a rock
that will make them fall,
and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame."
1 Brothers and sisters, my heart's desire and prayer to God for them is that
they may be saved. 2 I can testify that they have a zeal for God, but it is
not enlightened. 3 For, being ignorant of the righteousness that comes from
God, and seeking to establish their own, they have not submitted to God's
righteousness. 4 For Christ is the end of the law so that there may be
righteousness for everyone who believes.
5 Moses writes concerning the righteousness that comes from the law, that "the
person who does these things will live by them." 6 But the righteousness that
comes from faith says, "Do not say in your heart, 'Who will ascend into
heaven?'" (that is, to bring Christ down) 7 "or 'Who will descend into the
abyss?'" (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). 8 But what does it say?
"The word is near you,
on your lips and in your heart"
(that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); 9 because if you confess with
your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him
from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For one believes with the heart and so is
justified, and one confesses with the mouth and so is saved. 11 The scripture
says, "No one who believes in him will be put to shame." 12 For there is no
distinction between Jew and Greek; the same Lord is Lord of all and is
generous to all who call on him. 13 For, "Everyone who calls on the name of
the Lord shall be saved."
14 But how are they to call on one in whom they have not believed? And how are
they to believe in one of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear
without someone to proclaim him? 15 And how are they to proclaim him unless
they are sent? As it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who
bring good news!" 16 But not all have obeyed the good news; for Isaiah says,
"Lord, who has believed our message?" 17 So faith comes from what is heard,
and what is heard comes through the word of Christ.
18 But I ask, have they not heard? Indeed they have; for
"Their voice has gone out to all the earth,
and their words to the ends of the world."
19 Again I ask, did Israel not understand? First Moses says,
"I will make you jealous of those who are not a nation;
with a foolish nation I will make you angry."
20 Then Isaiah is so bold as to say,
"I have been found by those who did not seek me;
I have shown myself to those who did not ask for me."
21 But of Israel he says, "All day long I have held out my hands to a
disobedient and contrary people."
God has preserved a remnant
1 I ask, then, has God rejected his people? By no means! I myself am an
Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, a member of the tribe of Benjamin. 2 God
has not rejected his people whom he foreknew. Do you not know what the
scripture says of Elijah, how he pleads with God against Israel? 3 "Lord, they
have killed your prophets, they have demolished your altars; I alone am left,
and they are seeking my life." 4 But what is the divine reply to him? "I have
kept for myself seven thousand who have not bowed the knee to Baal." 5 So too
at the present time there is a remnant, chosen by grace. 6 But if it is by
grace, it is no longer on the basis of works, otherwise grace would no longer
7 What then? Israel failed to obtain what it was seeking. The elect obtained
it, but the rest were hardened, 8 as it is written,
"God gave them a sluggish spirit,
eyes that would not see
and ears that would not hear,
down to this very day."
9 And David says,
"Let their table become a snare and a trap,
a stumbling block and a retribution for them;
10 let their eyes be darkened so that they cannot see,
and keep their backs forever bent."
11 So I ask, have they stumbled so as to fall? By no means! But through their
stumbling salvation has come to the Gentiles, so as to make Israel jealous. 12
Now if their stumbling means riches for the world, and if their defeat means
riches for Gentiles, how much more will their full inclusion mean!
A warning to the Gentile Christians of Rome
13 Now I am speaking to you Gentiles. Inasmuch then as I am an apostle to the
Gentiles, I glorify my ministry 14 in order to make my own people jealous, and
thus save some of them. 15 For if their rejection is the reconciliation of the
world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead! 16 If the part of
the dough offered as first fruits is holy, then the whole batch is holy; and
if the root is holy, then the branches also are holy.
The metaphor of the olive tree
17 But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, a wild olive shoot,
were grafted in their place to share the rich root of the olive tree, 18 do
not boast over the branches. If you do boast, remember that it is not you that
support the root, but the root that supports you. 19 You will say, "Branches
were broken off so that I might be grafted in." 20 That is true. They were
broken off because of their unbelief, but you stand only through faith. So do
not become proud, but stand in awe. 21 For if God did not spare the natural
branches, perhaps he will not spare you. 22 Note then the kindness and the
severity of God: severity toward those who have fallen, but God's kindness
toward you, provided you continue in his kindness; otherwise you also will be
cut off. 23 And even those of Israel, if they do not persist in unbelief, will
be grafted in, for God has the power to graft them in again. 24 For if you
have been cut from what is by nature a wild olive tree and grafted, contrary
to nature, into a cultivated olive tree, how much more will these natural
branches be grafted back into their own olive tree.
The hardening of Israel
25 So that you may not claim to be wiser than you are, brothers and sisters, I
want you to understand this mystery: a hardening has come upon part of Israel,
until the full number of the Gentiles has come in. 26 And so all Israel will
be saved; as it is written,
"Out of Zion will come the Deliverer;
he will banish ungodliness from Jacob."
27 "And this is my covenant with them,
when I take away their sins."
28 As regards the gospel they are enemies of God for your sake; but as regards
election they are beloved, for the sake of their ancestors; 29 for the gifts
and the calling of God are irrevocable. 30 Just as you were once disobedient
to God but have now received mercy because of their disobedience, 31 so they
have now been disobedient in order that, by the mercy shown to you, they too
may now receive mercy. 32 For God has imprisoned all in disobedience so that
he may be merciful to all.
33 O the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable
are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways!
34 "For who has known the mind of the Lord?
Or who has been his counselor?"
35 "Or who has given a gift to him,
to receive a gift in return?"
36 For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory
Exhortation to holy living
1 I appeal to you therefore, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to
present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which
is your spiritual worship. 2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be
transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the
will of God – what is good and acceptable and perfect.
3 For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of
yourself more highly than you ought to think, but to think with sober
judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. 4 For
as in one body we have many members, and not all the members have the same
function, 5 so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually we
are members one of another. 6 We have gifts that differ according to the grace
given to us: prophecy, in proportion to faith; 7 ministry, in ministering; the
teacher, in teaching; 8 the exhorter, in exhortation; the giver, in
generosity; the leader, in diligence; the compassionate, in cheerfulness.
Goodwill within the community and without
9 Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; 10 love
one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor. 11 Do
not lag in zeal, be ardent in spirit, serve the Lord. 12 Rejoice in hope, be
patient in suffering, persevere in prayer. 13 Contribute to the needs of the
saints; extend hospitality to strangers.
14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. 15 Rejoice with
those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. 16 Live in harmony with one
another; do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly; do not claim to be
wiser than you are. 17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil, but take thought for
what is noble in the sight of all. 18 If it is possible, so far as it depends
on you, live peaceably with all. 19 Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but
leave room for the wrath of God; for it is written, "Vengeance is mine, I will
repay, says the Lord." 20 No, "if your enemies are hungry, feed them; if they
are thirsty, give them something to drink; for by doing this you will heap
burning coals on their heads." 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome
evil with good.
Subjection to governing authorities
1 Let every person be subject to the governing authorities; for there is no
authority except from God, and those authorities that exist have been
instituted by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists authority resists what God has
appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. 3 For rulers are not a
terror to good conduct, but to bad. Do you wish to have no fear of the
authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive its approval; 4 for it
is God's servant for your good. But if you do what is wrong, you should be
afraid, for the authority does not bear the sword in vain! It is the servant
of God to execute wrath on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore one must be subject, not
only because of wrath but also because of conscience. 6 For the same reason
you also pay taxes, for the authorities are God's servants, busy with this
very thing. 7 Pay to all what is due them – taxes to whom taxes are due,
revenue to whom revenue is due, respect to whom respect is due, honor to whom
honor is due.
8 Owe no one anything, except to love one another; for the one who loves
another has fulfilled the law. 9 The commandments, "You shall not commit
adultery; You shall not murder; You shall not steal; You shall not covet"; and
any other commandment, are summed up in this word, "Love your neighbor as
yourself." 10 Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore, love is the
fulfilling of the law.
11 Besides this, you know what time it is, how it is now the moment for you to
wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we became
believers; 12 the night is far gone, the day is near. Let us then lay aside
the works of darkness and put on the armor of light; 13 let us live honorably
as in the day, not in reveling and drunkenness, not in debauchery and
licentiousness, not in quarreling and jealousy. 14 Instead, put on the Lord
Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.
Exhortations regarding those who observe Torah; tolerance for others'
1 Welcome those who are weak in faith, but not for the purpose of quarreling
over opinions. 2 Some believe in eating anything, while the weak eat only
vegetables. 3 Those who eat must not despise those who abstain, and those who
abstain must not pass judgment on those who eat; for God has welcomed them. 4
Who are you to pass judgment on servants of another? It is before their own
lord that they stand or fall. And they will be upheld, for the Lord is able to
make them stand.
5 Some judge one day to be better than another, while others judge all days to
be alike. Let all be fully convinced in their own minds. 6 Those who observe
the day, observe it in honor of the Lord. Also those who eat, eat in honor of
the Lord, since they give thanks to God; while those who abstain, abstain in
honor of the Lord and give thanks to God.
7 We do not live to ourselves, and we do not die to ourselves. 8 If we live,
we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord; so then, whether we
live or whether we die, we are the LORD's. 9 For to this end Christ died and
lived again, so that he might be Lord of both the dead and the living.
10 Why do you pass judgment on your brother or sister? Or you, why do you
despise your brother or sister? For we will all stand before the judgment seat
of God. 11 For it is written,
"As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me,
and every tongue shall give praise to God."
12 So then, each of us will be accountable to God.
Freedom is not license to give offense
13 Let us therefore no longer pass judgment on one another, but resolve
instead never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of another. 14
I know and am persuaded in the Lord Jesus that nothing is unclean in itself;
but it is unclean for anyone who thinks it unclean. 15 If your brother or
sister is being injured by what you eat, you are no longer walking in love. Do
not let what you eat cause the ruin of one for whom Christ died. 16 So do not
let your good be spoken of as evil. 17 For the kingdom of God is not food and
drink but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. 18 The one who
thus serves Christ is acceptable to God and has human approval. 19 Let us then
pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding. 20 Do not, for the sake
of food, destroy the work of God. Everything is indeed clean, but it is wrong
for you to make others fall by what you eat; 21 it is good not to eat meat or
drink wine or do anything that makes your brother or sister stumble. 22 The
faith that you have, have as your own conviction before God. Blessed are those
who have no reason to condemn themselves because of what they approve. 23 But
those who have doubts are condemned if they eat, because they do not act from
faith; for whatever does not proceed from faith is sin.
1 We who are strong ought to put up with the failings of the weak, and not to
please ourselves. 2 Each of us must please our neighbor for the good purpose
of building up the neighbor. 3 For Christ did not please himself; but, as it
is written, "The insults of those who insult you have fallen on me." 4 For
whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, so that
by steadfastness and by the encouragement of the scriptures we might have
hope. 5 May the God of steadfastness and encouragement grant you to live in
harmony with one another, in accordance with Christ Jesus, 6 so that together
you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
7 Welcome one another, therefore, just as Christ has welcomed you, for the
glory of God. 8 For I tell you that Christ has become a servant of the
circumcised on behalf of the truth of God in order that he might confirm the
promises given to the patriarchs, 9 and in order that the Gentiles might
glorify God for his mercy. As it is written,
"Therefore I will confess you among the Gentiles,
and sing praises to your name";
10 and again he says,
"Rejoice, O Gentiles, with his people";
11 and again,
"Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles,
and let all the peoples praise him";
12 and again Isaiah says,
"The root of Jesse shall come,
the one who rises to rule the Gentiles;
in him the Gentiles shall hope."
13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that
you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
The letter's argument brought to a close; the broader context of Paul's
14 I myself feel confident about you, my brothers and sisters, that you
yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, and able to
instruct one another. 15 Nevertheless on some points I have written to you
rather boldly by way of reminder, because of the grace given me by God 16 to
be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles in the priestly service of the
gospel of God, so that the offering of the Gentiles may be acceptable,
sanctified by the Holy Spirit. 17 In Christ Jesus, then, I have reason to
boast of my work for God. 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. For I do hope to see you
on my journey and to be sent on by you, once I have enjoyed your company for a
little while. 25 At present, however, I am going to Jerusalem in a ministry to
the saints; 26 for Macedonia and Achaia have been pleased to share their
resources with the poor among the saints at Jerusalem. 27 They were pleased to
do this, and indeed they owe it to them; for if the Gentiles have come to
share in their spiritual blessings, they ought also to be of service to them
in material things. 28 So, when I have completed this, and have delivered to
them what has been collected, I will set out by way of you to Spain; 29 and I
know that when I come to you, I will come in the fullness of the blessing of
Apprehensions regarding Jerusalem
30 I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the
love of the Spirit, to join me in earnest prayer to God on my behalf, 31 that
I may be rescued from the unbelievers in Judea, and that my ministry to
Jerusalem may be acceptable to the saints, 32 so that by God's will I may come
to you with joy and be refreshed in your company. 33 The God of peace be with
all of you. Amen.
A recommendation and greetings
1 I commend to you our sister Phoebe, a deacon of the church at Cenchreae, 2
so that you may welcome her in the Lord as is fitting for the saints, and help
her in whatever she may require from you, for she has been a benefactor of
many and of myself as well.
3 Greet Prisca and Aquila, who work with me in Christ Jesus, 4 and who risked
their necks for my life, to whom not only I give thanks, but also all the
churches of the Gentiles. 5 Greet also the church in their house. Greet my
beloved Epaenetus, who was the first convert in Asia for Christ. 6 Greet Mary,
who has worked very hard among you. 7 Greet Andronicus and Junia, my relatives
who were in prison with me; they are prominent among the apostles, and they
were in Christ before I was. 8 Greet Ampliatus, my beloved in the Lord. 9
Greet Urbanus, our co-worker in Christ, and my beloved Stachys. 10 Greet
Apelles, who is approved in Christ. Greet those who belong to the family of
Aristobulus. 11 Greet my relative Herodion. Greet those in the Lord who belong
to the family of Narcissus. 12 Greet those workers in the Lord, Tryphaena and
Tryphosa. Greet the beloved Persis, who has worked hard in the Lord. 13 Greet
Rufus, chosen in the Lord; and greet his mother – a mother to me also. 14
Greet Asyncritus, Phlegon, Hermes, Patrobas, Hermas, and the brothers and
sisters who are with them. 15 Greet Philologus, Julia, Nereus and his sister,
and Olympas, and all the saints who are with them. 16 Greet one another with a
holy kiss. All the churches of Christ greet you.
17 I urge you, brothers and sisters, to keep an eye on those who cause
dissensions and offenses, in opposition to the teaching that you have learned;
avoid them. 18 For such people do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own
appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the
simple-minded. 19 For while your obedience is known to all, so that I rejoice
over you, I want you to be wise in what is good and guileless in what is evil.
20 The God of peace will shortly crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our
Lord Jesus Christ be with you.
21 Timothy, my co-worker, greets you; so do Lucius and Jason and Sosipater, my
22 I Tertius, the writer of this letter, greet you in the Lord.
23 Gaius, who is host to me and to the whole church, greets you. Erastus, the
city treasurer, and our brother Quartus, greet you.
A concluding blessing
25 Now to God who is able to strengthen you according to my gospel and the
proclamation of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery that
was kept secret for long ages 26 but is now disclosed, and through the
prophetic writings is made known to all the Gentiles, according to the command
of the eternal God, to bring about the obedience of faith – 27 to the only
wise God, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever! Amen.