Lectionary Year A
February 24, 2002
Romans 4:1-5,13-17

Initial Acquaintance/Rough Translation

A. Comparing Translations

(JFC) The New American Bible and the Revised Standard Version differ some, according to these notes:

1 Abraham found, - NAB
Abraham, - RSV

2 he has reason to boast; - NAB
he has something to boast about, - RSV

but this was not so in the sight of God. - NAB
but not before God. - RSV

3 credited to him as righteous. - NAB
reckoned to him as righteous. - RSV

4 A worker's wage is credited not as a gift, - NAB
Now to one who works, his wages are not reckoned as a gift - RSV

5 yet believes in the one who justifies the ungodly, - NAB
but trusts him who justifies the ungodly, - RSV

15 there is no violation. - NAB
there is no transgression. - RSV

16 For this reason, it depends on faith, - NAB
That is why it depends on faith, - RSV

so that it may be a gift, - NAB
may rest on grace - RSV

17 He is our father in the sight of God in whom he believed - NAB
in the presence of God in whom he believed - RSV

B. Textual Criticism

(JFC) 1 Some of the witnesses rearrange the words and change the word propa,tora, in this verse's eu`rhke,nai VAbraa.m to.n propa,tora h`mw/n. Metzger's committee in TCGNT prefers to view as likely original the inclusion of pate,ra to replace propa,tora, a word found only here in the New Testament, for "(which is the customary designation in the New Testament for Abraham; see Luke 16:24, 30; John 8:53; Acts 7:2; Romans 4:12.).".

15 Some of the tradition replaces de. with gar, probably trying to make it parallel with the same word at the beginning of the verse. However, the contrasting idea needs as much emphasis as it can get, so, it seems appropriate to go with the text as printed, as more reliable witnesses do.

C. Rough Translation

(JFC) 1 What then shall we say finding (future, active, participle) Abraham the forefather of ours according to the human point of view? 2 For if Abraham from/by means of/ because of works was declared/treated as righteous/considered as getting right with God (aorist, passive, indicative), he has grounds for boasting, but not for/with reference to/pertaining to God. 3 For what the scripture says? "But believed/trusted Abraham in the God (dative) and was reckoned/considered him to be among the righteous/right with God". 4 But in the works (present, middle, participle, depending on the dative) the pay/wages not are/is calculated/considered to be a gift but according to what is due/debt. 5 But not to the one working yet trusts/believes in the righteousness of the impious/godless is counted/supposed/reckoned the faith of him among righteous.
13 For not through law the promise to Abraham nor to the descendents of his, the heir the very one to be world, but through righteousness of faith. 14 For if it is the ones from the law receiving, he will be receiving (perfect, passive, indicative), give up/lay aside the faith and render ineffective that which was promised; 15 for the law wrath brings; but where not is law neither (is there) violation/disobedience. 16 Through this faith, so that according to grace, to the being confirmed the promise all the offspring, not the one from the law only but also the one from the faith of Abraham, who is father of all of us, 17 according as it is written that "Father of many nations I have been making you" before the presence of whom he believed in God the one giving life to the dead and calling the not being as being.

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