This course is a general survey of Paul’s letters to the congregations in Rome and Galatia. There is a particular emphasis on practical issues related to personal spiritual life and doctrinal understanding, but it also deals with difficult passages related to Messianic Judaism. Participants in this class will learn of the power of the Gospel to transform lives as the class focuses on the meaning and impact of terms such as justification, sanctification, adoption, righteousness, condemnation, sonship, and other terms that are key to understanding Paul’s purposes in these letters.
The student will learn how believers are to understand the present day validity and relevance of the Torah or Law, even while considering statements indicating believers are “no longer under” law. The class will bring clarity on law versus grace issues, as well as help the student understand the importance of freedom from legalism while still embracing the Torah itself. Also discussed is the importance and place of Israel in Paul’s thinking. While treated as a survey, special emphasis is given to Romans chapters 1-8 and the relevance of this material to practical spiritual life.