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Third Millennium Study Bible
Notes on Romans 16:22-27

I, Tertius - Romans 16:22

Hendriksen says, "For an author of a letter to have a secretary was not at all unusual. That Paul also had one and would at the very close affix his own signature, at times even adding a few words, is clear from Gal. 6:11; 2 Thess. 3:17. See also 1 Cor. 16:21; Col. 4:18." We know very little about Tetius, except that he was probably a Christian ("I . . . greet you in the Lord"). Harrison says, "Though it was Paul's habit to dictate his letters except for the close (2 Thess. 3:17), we may be sure he was careful to use believers rather than public secretaries who would do their work without any spiritual concern or special care." Note the personal touch by Tertius. Romans, a very theologically and doctrinal book is also very personal (cf. Rom. 16:13). Along with his continual use of "beloved," it also sheds some light on the relationship between the apostle and his helpers. Throughout this letter "in Christ" (Rom. 6:1, 11, 23; 8:1, 39; 9:1; 12:5; 15:17; 16:3, 7, 9, 10) and "in the Lord" (Rom. 14:14; 16:2, 8, 11, 12, 13) are predominate themes and here the writing of this letter is "in the Lord." To Tertius writing was a service to his Lord!

Gaius - Romans 16:23

Gaius, which was a common name for this era (see Acts 19:29; 20:4; 3 John 1), is presumably to be identified with the Gaius of 1 Corinthians 1:14; and may be the Titius Justus of Acts 18:7 (Titius in gens). Stott maintains:

Next comes a message from Paul's host in Corinth. Gaius, whose hospitality I and the whole church here enjoy, sends you his greetings (Rom. 16:23a). Several men called Gaius appear in the New Testament, for it was a common name. It would be natural, however, to identify this one with the Corinthian whom Paul had baptized. Some scholars have further suggested that his full Roman name was Gaius Titius Justus, in which case he had a large house next to the synagogue, into which he had welcomed Paul after the Jews had rejected his gospel. It is then understandable that Paul would again be his house guest, and that the church would also meet in his home.

An Erastus (meaning "beloved") is mentioned in Acts 19:22 and 2 Timothy 4:20, but it is not known whether these instances refer to the same man. Harrison says:

Erastus, a notable figure because of his public office as "of public works," also sends a greeting. Oscar Broneer, a prominent Greek archaeologist who did considerable excavating at the site of ancient Corinth, reported the following in "Corinth: Center of St. Paul's Missionary Work in Greece" (Biblical Archaeologist 14 [1951]: 94):

A re-used paving block preserves an inscription, stating that the pavement was laid at the expense of Erastus, who was aedile (Commissioner of Public Works). He was probably the same Erastus who became a co-worker of St. Paul (Acts 19:22; Rom 16:23, where he is called oikonomos, "chamberlain" of the city), a notable exception to the Apostle's characterization of the early Christians: "Not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble are called" (1 Cor. 1:26).

Of greater interest is that a Christian held such a responsible post in the local government of Corinth (possibly treasurer). Of Quartus, nothing is known (he might have been the brother of Tertius, for that name means "third" and this one "fourth," but we do not know, see Bruce).

Doxology - Romans 16:25-27

Questioned by some, this closing doxology themes draw to a fitting conclusion much that has already been said by Paul. Stott says, "Paul's doxology is an eloquent and appropriate conclusion to his letter, for he takes up its central themes, summarizes them and relates them to one another. Although the grammar of the doxology is not easy to unravel, it contains profound truths about God and the gospel. It consists of four parts." Essentially, Paul drew attention to his teaching (Rom. 2:16; cf. 1 Thess. 1:5; 2 Tim. 2:8), its power to edify (Rom. 1:11), to the revelation of God's mystery (Rom. 11:25; cf. Eph. 3:2-6), to faith and obedience among the nations (Rom. 1:5), and to the wisdom of God in redemption (Rom. 11:33; cf. Eph. 3:10-12). See WCF 2.1; WLC 7, 155).

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