Article

Augustine and Pelagius on the Epistle to the Romans

Mark Edwards

in The Oxford Handbook of the Reception History of the Bible

Published in print January 2011 | ISBN: 9780199204540
Published online May 2011 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199204540.003.0042

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Religion and Theology

 Augustine and Pelagius on the Epistle to the Romans

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Perhaps no scriptural passage has divided the church so bitterly, or so often, as the ninth article of the Epistle to the Romans. Predestinarian readings take two forms, one of which maintains that God predestines us to salvation or reprobation in the light of faith or works foreseen, the other that this predestining is itself the unconditioned cause of the good that he foresees. Both can claim the authority of Augustine, the foremost theologian of the first millennium. His adversary Pelagius found a different stratagem — not unknown in modern times — which enabled him to deny that Paul endorsed any species of predestination. To explain how each arrived at his conclusions, we must first sketch the theology of salvation that each set out to reconcile with the difficult text of this epistle.

Keywords: Romans; epistles; Augustine; Pelagius; God; salvation; Paul

Article.  6045 words. 

Subjects: Religion ; Christianity ; Religious Studies ; Religion in the Ancient World

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