Chapter 4 from Forgotten Truths by Sir Robert Anderson
It is extraordinary that any student of Scripture can miss the clearly marked difference between the gospel of the opening clause of the Epistle to the Romans, and the gospel specified in the characteristically “Pauline” postscript at its close.
“Sojourners from Rome, both Jews and proselytes,” were among the multitudes who heard the Divine amnesty proclaimed at Pentecost. And it was “to Jews only” that in those early days the word of that gospel was preached. (Acts 11:19) In Rome therefore, as elsewhere, Jews and proselytes constituted the nucleus and rallying centre of the Church. And we read the Epistle to the Romans amiss, if we fail to recognize what an important place its teaching accords to those Hebrew Christians. The word which had won them to Christ was that “gospel of God which He had promised afore by His prophets in the Holy Scriptures, concerning His Son who was born of the seed of David.” Language could not more definitely indicate that it was the fulfillment of the hope of every true Israelite. Hence his words to the “Chief of the Jews” in Rome “For the hope of Israel I am bound with this chain.” (Acts 28:20) And, as already noticed, his answer to the charge on which he was imprisoned was that his preaching to the Jews was based entirely on the Law and the Prophets. (Acts 26:22)