As Protestant Christians, we are used to reading Romans through the eyes of Martin Luther. Out of a crisis of faith and in reaction to the legalism of medieval Catholicism, Luther engaged in a very individualistic reading that saw Romans as an explanation of personal salvation by faith vs. legalism (supposedly of the Jews). But as my late friend and teacher Dwight Pryor said: Romans is not about you; it is about God, specifically the ‘Gospel of God’ (1:1). The Gospel is always personal but never private. It is about what God is doing in history and where we fit in. Paul is telling a bigger story, and Israel is integral to the story. Romans 1:1-17 is crucial to understand Paul’s theme, which is based on an Old Testament text!
Scripture: Romans 1:1-17