N. T. Wright’s The Day the Revolution Began, Romans Reconsidered, Part 41 (A Re-translation, chapter 1)


N. T. “Tom” Wright has just released another paradigm-shifting book suggesting a new, more scriptural way of understanding the atonement, The Day the Revolution Began: Reconsidering the Meaning of Jesus’s Crucifixion. Wright delves deeply into how the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus accomplish our salvation.

A Re-translation

In most of the previous posts, I’ve offered a revised or annotated translation of the text. I thought it would be interesting — and perhaps even helpful — to accumulate these into a single text.

Unlike the earlier translations, I’ll not show the changes in brackets except where I’m not just translating but also explaining outside the text.

And I hasten to add that this is my own translation, based on my understanding of Wright but not at all the same as his own translation The Kingdom New Testament (which can be bought at Amazon).

Chapter 1:17-32

17 For the loving covenant faithfulness of God is revealed in the gospel from faith to faith, just as it is written, “The covenant faithful by faith will live.”

18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and covenant unfaithfulness of men, who by their covenant unfaithfulness suppress the truth about God 19 because what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them.  20 For since the creation of the world his invisible attributes – his eternal power and divine nature – have been clearly seen, because they are understood through what has been made. So people are without excuse.  21 For although they knew God, they did not worship him as God or give him thanks, but they became futile in their thoughts and their senseless hearts were darkened.  22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools  23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for an image resembling mortal human beings or birds or four-footed animals or reptiles.

24 Therefore God gave them over in the desires of their hearts to impurity, to dishonor their bodies among themselves.  25 They exchanged the truth of God for a lie and worshiped and served the creation rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.

26 For this reason God gave them over to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged the natural sexual relations for unnatural ones,  27 and likewise the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed in their passions for one another. Men committed shameless acts with men and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

28 And just as they did not see fit to worship God, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what should not be done.  29 They are filled with every kind of unfaithfulness: wickedness, covetousness, malice. They are rife with envy, murder, strife, deceit, hostility. They are gossips,  30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, contrivers of all sorts of evil, disobedient to parents,  31 senseless, covenant-breakers, heartless, ruthless.  32 Although they fully know God’s covenant decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but also approve of those who practice them.

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About Jay F Guin

My name is Jay Guin, and I’m a retired elder. I wrote The Holy Spirit and Revolutionary Grace about 18 years ago. I’ve spoken at the Pepperdine, Lipscomb, ACU, Harding, and Tulsa lectureships and at ElderLink. My wife’s name is Denise, and I have four sons, Chris, Jonathan, Tyler, and Philip. I have two grandchildren. And I practice law.
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3 Responses to N. T. Wright’s The Day the Revolution Began, Romans Reconsidered, Part 41 (A Re-translation, chapter 1)

  1. Larry Cheek says:

    I have compared your re-translation to several translations, and really do not see that it clarifies or modifies any portion of text that changes any concept in the message. Is there any specific point that you believe has been modified or clarified?

  2. Profile photo of Jay Guin Jay Guin says:


    If you read the other translations as agreeing with my own, then my work here is accomplished. There is no higher compliment to pay to a teacher. Thank you.

    But most people would not understand “righteousness” to refer to covenant faithfulness. And most would not understand “death” in Rom 5 to refer to the loss of immortality. Few would see the “faith of Jesus” as “Jesus’ faithfulness.” And few see “faith” as including both trust and faithfulness.

    And even for those who’ve been well taught on these topics, few would have worked through each verse to see how the message of Romans is changed by the better definitions. I mean, if the Reformation leaders had seen things this way, we wouldn’t be arguing about Original Sin and the relationship of faith to works the way we do today. In fact, rather than seeing Romans as justification for countless disagreements and divisions, we’d see it is as a powerful plea for unity based on faith in Jesus.

  3. Larry Cheek says:

    I guess I have been fortunate to not have been programmed by instructors in universities, as I have been able to read the text and determine its context from comparing the scriptures, in place of having my understanding clouded by much study of mans ideas, which are attempting to drive the agenda which they have concluded.
    I know that there are several theory’s which we disagree upon and as we continue to communicate I believe that the true position in scriptures will prevail.
    Thanks for your work, I could never reach this type of audience or consultation without you.

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