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Durham e-Theses
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The character of Abraham’s faith in Romans 4

Ritter, Nils (1999) The character of Abraham’s faith in Romans 4. Masters thesis, Durham University.



Paul's concept of justification by faith has been a matter of discussion for many years. In order to avoid a too general treatment of the subject, this thesis focuses on Paul’s concept in Romans 1-4 and especially on the crucial example of Abraham in Romans 4. With Abraham it is discussed what bearing his example has on the overall concept of justification by faith, its soteriological exclusiveness, and its relationship to Christology. The introduction reflects on the main views proposed by scholars concerning Paul’s concept of justification by faith and particularly on their views of Romans 1-4. Having drawn a picture of the broad field of opinions, Romans 1-4 is put in Chapter 2 in its historical and literary context. These general considerations provide the basis for the discussion in Chapter 3 of the various views concerning the relation of justification by faith and the law before and after the Christ event, its relation to Christology and the important question why Paul possibly expresses the concept in theocentric rather than Christocentric terms. The discussion focuses first on Paul's general thought and moves then on to discuss if and how Abraham reflects Paul's argument about faith. In discussing Abraham's role in Paul's argument a special attention is, furthermore, given to his paradigmatic function. Coming to the conclusion, the findings are summarised and the obstacles for an application of these findings are being discussed, such as the question of the centrality of Paul's concept of justification by faith and if Romans 1-4 represents an occasional position. This final discussion provides the means for a brief suggestion of possible areas of application.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Award:Master of Theology
Thesis Date:1999
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:01 Aug 2012 11:47

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