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Textual Signposts in the Argument of Romans: A Relevance-Theory Approach
Sarah H. Casson
ECL 25
Publication Date
August 2019


A fresh look at the development of Paul’s argument in Romans

The Greek word gar occurs 144 times in Romans and 1,041 times in the entire New Testament. However, many instances of this connective defy easy definition, and the English translation for is often inadequate, obscuring the clue that gar gives to the direction of the communicator’s thought. In this ground-breaking work, Sarah H. Casson argues that gar offers vital guidance to the coherence of Romans. The book applies the cognitive approach of relevance theory to show how garfunctions as an indispensable guide for tracing the significant points of Paul’s argument, helping resolve questions about the coherence of sections, as well as smaller-scale exegetical problems. The work engages with key debates regarding the purpose of Romans and challenges some recent influential interpretations.


  • An exegetically useful understanding of the connective gar
  • A new method for determining Paul’s audience and reason for writing
  • A challenge to recent key debates and influential interpretations of the purpose of Romans

Sarah H. Casson is a member of Wycliffe Bible Translators and SIL International. She has been a Translation Consultant with the Eastern Congo Group of SIL International since 2008, involved in Bible translation in minority languages. Since 2009 she has lectured in the Bible Translation degree program at Shalom University, Bunia, in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

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This is Early Christianity and Its Literature 25. See more available volumes in the ECL series.