Greek letters began with the names of the sender and the recipient.
see 1 Cor. 9.1 n.
Paul here affirms his apostleship to the nations, i.e. Gentiles.
The word grace (i.e God's favor) replaces the usual and similar-sounding Greek salutation; peace is the Jewish salutation (e.g. Matt. 10.13
Next in an ancient Greek letter there was usually a prayer for the recipient's health. Similarly, Paul begins all his letters,
except the angry Gal. (and 2 Cor. chs. 10–13
if that is indeed a separate letter; see annotation at 2 Cor. 10.1–13.14
), by thanking … God for the addressees, mentioning in the process the major themes of the letter.
is that the righteousness of God gives unmerited acceptance to (i.e. justifies) the believer on the basis of the person's faith (i.e. trust).
see 2.9–10 n.
The righteousness of God … ending in faith: the book's theme; see 3.22
“The heavens tell out the glory of God” (Ps. 19.1
), but human beings have refused to honour God (v. 21
All that may be known, i.e. except God's special revelation to Jews and Christians.
For the Jewish scorn of idols see Isa. 44.13–20; Wisd. chs. 13–15
Therefore God has given them up (vv. 24, 26, 28
) to increasing wickedness that leads to death.
See Gal. 5.19–21
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