The Message of Romans: God's Good News for the World Paperback – Oct 1 2006
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"This book from 'The Bible Speaks Today' series brought me to a deeper understanding of grace. Stott's verse-by-verse explanation modeled biblical teaching for me. He gave a clear dissection of Scripture. Personally, this book helped me trust the grace of God."--Max Lucado, Christian Retailing, September 2012
"This book from The Bible Speaks Today series brought me to a deeper understanding of grace. Stott's verse-by-verse explanation modeled biblical teaching for me. He gave a clear dissection of Scripture. Personally, this book helped me trust the grace of God."--Max Lucado, Christian Retailing, September 2012
About the Author
John R. W. Stott (1921-2011) ha sido uno de los predicadores y lideres cristianos de mayor prestigio en nuestros dias. Por muchos anos sirvio como rector de la Iglesia All Souls en Londres, Inglaterra, donde desarrollo un ministerio efectivo de pastoral urbana y ha sido uno de los pioneros en desarrollo del Pacto de Lausana. Sus libros han vendido millones de copias en todo el mundo, en mas de 12 idiomas. Con sabiduria y autoridad, comparte las ensenanzas biblicas de una forma profunda pero a la vez practica y directa. Sus escritos son joyas en cualquier biblioteca y obligatorios para quien desee acercarse al texto biblico con una lectura fiel y seria.
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Serving as a pastor for over 25 years, I have either taught or preached through Romans on several occasions. As I was sharing my plans to tackle Romans yet another time, my good friend ( a fellow pastor with degrees from Moody, Dallas, and Trinity) said, "Ed, you have to get Stott's commentary. It is the best. I just did Romans and bought Stott's when I was half-way through. Wish I had it the whole time." Since my pal hesitates making recommendations and does not inflate matters, I knew it had to be good. I took my friend's word and was not disappointed. It was better than I imagined. Much better than Hodge, Lenski, Newell, and a host of others. Not tedious or tangent-prone like some of the mega-sets.
Stott is first and foremost an interpretter. He addresses possibilities and then draws his conclusion. He is solid, conservative, believes in sovereign grace, and truly seeks to understand the original intent of the author. His purpose is to interpret correctly, not to twist texts to fit an agenda.
He is thorough yet not tedious; understandable but not simplistic; concise, but not cold. The commentary is 406 pages (not including the study guide at the end), but the print is large and easy on the eye. The many Scripture references are footnoted at the bottom of each page (making them easy to find), as are other references, but they take up little space at the bottom. There are no tedious explanatory notes footnoted; all you need is in the text itself.
If you are a Bible-believing Christian, this volume is the one to get.
Some positives on this book include:
Instead of giving the typical break at 1:15 & 1:16, like most commentators, Stott explains it like this:
Vs 14 I am bound
Vs 15 I am eager
Vs 16 I am not ashamed
(1:16 & 17 state the theme of Romans, but Stott splits 16 off and matches it to the end of the previous paragraph. This fresh view makes one think. I believe that is one of Stott's great assets). So he is unique and has some really good things to say. It's worth reading. It is great for preaching ideas. However, many times he gives a view that flows from one perspective of theology on a verse, with no hint or cue that there are other views that may differ from him. Sometimes his perspective is not really taken seriously by contemporary scholars-yet Stott fails to even mention there are opposing views. So he can have a bit of eisegetical theology mixed into his exegesis. For this reason, I totally disagree with the reviewer who said something like if you could only own one commentary on Romans that this was the one to get. It probably should be number three or four in a list of priorities-not number one, at least for exegetical work.
At one point he brings Calvinistic terminology into a simple use of the term law, attempting to suggest an exegetically exotic view. More careful commentaries, like Moo on Romans reject his approach as difficult to support. Another example is his effort on Romans 6 to say that the power of sin is not included in what Paul is talking about. Stott insists that it is the guilt of sin only that Paul is covering in 6:1-14. There is no contextual factor to warrant that conclusion. Again, more thorough and careful evangelical works on that section do not agree with his assessment. (Stott is this way in his Ephesians commentary as well).
So how I use Stott is for a fresh look at the text and great phrases that preach well. As far as exegetical accuracy, I would lean towards Moo and Edwards on Romans. So I recommend Stott on Romans, but not for every paragraph-and not as the main commentary one owns for serious work in the Greek text. For that, one cannot be without the NICNT by Moo-which is far more complete and careful in its analysis. So if you can afford to get Stott, add him to your collection and compare what he says to other guys like Edwards Moo, Kasemann, etc....He's got a great way of phrasing things and I've used his phrasing in sermon outlines more than once.
The book is a treasure trove of good thoughts for preachers of the Romans to consider. It is highly recommended.