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The Meaning of «Works of the Law» in Galatians and Romans

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Robert Keith Rapa

Paul’s orientation toward the Law of Moses and the Judaism of his day, and the resulting impact upon his theological thought, have remained perplexing issues in New Testament and specialized Pauline studies. This book examines the meaning of Paul’s expression «works of the law» in Galatians and Romans as a means toward resolution of these difficult areas. Robert Keith Rapa suggests that rightly apprehending Paul’s perspective on «work», his use of rhetorical and epistolographical communication mechanisms, and his concept of the place of the Law in the redemptive program of God, leads to a coherent, consistent understanding of Paul’s polemical argumentation and his approach to the Law of Moses. This understanding will in turn lend clarity to our interpretation of these epistles, which are key for grasping Paul’s theology.