Rom 4:1-25   KJV –

1 What shall we say then that Abraham our father S, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found S?
(SynecdocheS 625; 630; Prolepsis 981)

2 For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath [whereof] to glory; but not before God.
(Prolepsis 981)

3 For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.
(Prolepsis 981)

4 Now to him that workethI is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.
(IdiomaI 828)

5 But to him that workethI not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodlyA, his faith is counted for righteousness.
(AmpliatioA 690; IdiomaI 828)

6 Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without worksI,
(IdiomaI 828)

7 [Saying], Blessed [are] they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered.
(Gnome 796)

8 Blessed [is] the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.
(Gnome 796)

9 [Cometh] this blessedness then upon the circumcision [only], or upon the uncircumcision also? for we say that faith was reckoned to Abraham for righteousness.
(Ellipsis 30)

10 How was it then reckoned? when he was in circumcision, or in uncircumcision? Not in circumcision, but in uncircumcision.

11 And he received the sign of circumcisionGc, a seal of the righteousness of the faith which [he had yet] being uncircumcised: that he might be the father of all them that believe, though they be not circumcised; that righteousness might be imputed unto them also:
(Genitive case 992; 995)

12 And the father of circumcision-E- to them who are not of the circumcision only, but who also walk in the steps of that faith of our father Abraham, which [he had] being [yet] uncircumcised.
(Ellipsis-E- 101)

13 For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, [was] not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faithGc.
(Ellipsis 108; Genitive case 992; 995)

14 Æ For if they which are of the law [be] heirs, faith is made void, and the promise made of none effect:
(ÆtiologiaÆ 963)

15 Æ Because the law worketh wrathM: for where no law is, [there is] no transgression.
(MetonymyM 550; Ætiologia Æ 963)

16 Therefore [it is] of faith, that [it might be] by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed S; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all,
(Synecdoche S 636)

17 (As it is written, I have madeS thee a father of many nations,) before him whom he believed, [even] God, who quickenethI the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were.
(SynecdocheS 631; IdiomaI 859)

18 Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seedS be.

(SynecdocheS; Polyptoton 282)

19 And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sara’s womb:
(Tapeinosis 163)

20 He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith,I giving glory to God;
(Pleonasm 418; IdiomaI 854)

21 And being fully persuadedI that, what he had promised, he was ableI also to perform.
(IdiomaI 825; 854)

22 And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness.

23 Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed to him;

24 But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead;

25 Who was delivered [to die]E for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.
(EllipsisE 37)

Italicized words in [brackets] were added by the King James Version translators.


Verse 1 Synecdoche:
1. “Father” is used, but means ancestor
2. Not only “found”, but also received or obtained.

Prolepsis (Occupatio/Aperta): it is sometimes argued that being saved through faith is works, because it requires something of effort or doing on the part of the one having faith. In verses 1-3 Paul meets this objection before it can be presented.

Verses 4-6 Idioma: “Works” here refers to the observation/performance of the Mosaic Law. The original audience of Paul’s epistles would have understood it this way. (see Rom. 3:20; Gal. 2:16)

Verse 5 Ampliatio: here the word “ungodly” is used in reference to those who once were, but no longer are. For a better understanding of this figure see page 689 of Dr. Bullinger’s book, Figures Of Speech Used In The Bible. The effect in verse 5 is not unlike that of the figure Gnome in that it reminds them/us of something already known. (see Rom. 5:9 especially the word nyn  νυν

Verse 7-8 Gnome: see Psalm 32:1-2, Synonymia, and comments on page 796.

Verse 12 Ellipsis: “And the father of circumcision[ that righteousness might be imputed ] to them who are not of the circumcision only, but who also walk in the steps of that faith of our father Abraham, which [he had] being [yet] uncircumcised”.

Verse 13 Ellipsis: “ For not through [righteousness of
law was the promise [made to Abraham, or to his seed, that he should be heir of the world, but through righteousness of faith. ”

Verses 14-15 Ætiologia: a common figure whereby a cause or reason is given for what is being said.

Verse 15 Metonymy: “worketh wrath” means to execute penalty (see 13:4).

Verse 16 Synecdoche: “seed”; A part for the whole.

Verse 17 Idioma: Quickeneth means to make alive.

Verse 18

Polyptoton: ος παρ᾽ ελπιδα επ᾽ ελπιδι επιστευσεν εις το γενεσθαι αυτον πατερα πολλων εθνων κατα το ειρημενον ουτως εσται το σπερμα σου

Blue Letter Bible. “Paul’s Epistle – Romans 4 – (KJV – King James Version).” Blue Letter Bible. 1996-2018. 12 May 2018.
< >
Synecdoche: seed; a part for the whole.

Verses 20-21 Idiom: (see page 854) The Biblical Greek implication of faith exceeds simple belief, extending into hope as a full assurance. Those to whom Romans was written thought of faith this way, and because modern thinking differs from this, it is idiomatic to the culture of the time.

Blue Letter Bible. “Dictionary and Word Search for pistis (Strong’s 4102)“.
Blue Letter Bible. 1996-2018. 13 May 2018.
< http://;t=KJV >

Idioma: Able implies not only the ability, but also the willingness.
Blue Letter Bible. “Dictionary and Word Search for dynatos (Strong’s 1415)“.
Blue Letter Bible. 1996-2018. 13 May 2018.
< http://;t=KJV >

Thanks go to Blue Letter Bible and Internet Archive and The Cornell University Library for providing public domain material.

Thanks also to E. W. Bullinger for his work
Figures Of Speech Used In The Bible, and thanks to you for taking the time here.
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