The Rhetoric of Romans: Argumentative Constraint and Strategy and Paul's Dialogue with Judaism
Publisher T&T Clark
The purpose of Romans is addressed here by applying insights from the 'new rhetoric'. Elliott holds that Romans is a paraenetic letter, written to secure the 'obedience of faith' among Gentile Christians. It is within the constraints of that 'rhetorical situation' that the letter's theological argument must be understood. Insights of the new rhetoric are applied to the vexing problem of how to integrate Paul's remarks on Torah and his dialogue with a Jewish interlocutor in chs. 1-4 with the letter's Gentile-Christian audience. Careful attention to rhetorical movement shows that Paul addresses 'the Jew' not in order to challenge his covenantal status, but to present a paradigm by which the righteousness manifest 'in Christ' may be understood under the rubric of the integrity of God.