Romans 5:12-21*

A. (12)  Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:

B. (13) For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law.

C. (14) Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come.

D. (15) But not as the offence, so also is the free gift.

E. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God  and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many.

F. (16) And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift:

G. for the judgment was by one to condemnation,

F’. but the free gift is of many offences unto justification.

E’. (17) For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one;
much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.)

D’. (18) Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.

C’. (19) For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.

B’. (20) Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound.

A.’ But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound: (21) That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.

Note:  The pattern is almost identical to a pattern for the same passage published by Ian H. Thomson in “Chiasmus in the Pauline Epistles”, Journal For The Study Of The New Testament Supplement Series 111, Sheffield Academic press, Sheffield, 1995. This post had not been copied but was discovered independently. 

2 thoughts on “Romans 5:12-21*”

  1. I suggest perhaps that the point E’) Bears more of a “centreline” than your current “G”.

    For instance:

    #judgment was by one to condemnation
    #judgment came upon all men to condemnation

    (death) **Reigned** (Adam to moses)
    *** “reigned by one…. reign in life”
    (Sin) **Reigned** (unto death) Even so, “reign” life

    “Grace of God…. gift of grace…”
    **Grace and of the gift….”**
    “Grace…..might grace reign”

    “much more” is also a triplet in this passage perhaps.

    Verse 17 seems to be pertinent. “Reigning” of a master is what chapter 6 of Romans is heavy on. comparing who we serve – sin, or God. the whole “reigning” thing seems to be pointed at in Romans 5.

    I think the centre verse is :
    much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.

    The surrounding context of triplets seem to determine this. – (much more, grace, reign)

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