The Jewish-gentile conflict

Jews were expelled from Rome because of disturbances around 49 CE by the edict of Claudius.  Claudius died around the year 54 CE.  His successor, Emperor Nero, allowed the Jews back into Rome, but then, after the Great Fire of Rome of 64 CE, Christians were persecuted.  With the return of the Jews to Rome in 54 CE, new conflicts arose between the gentile Christians and the Jewish Christians who had formerly been expelled. Gentile Christians may have developed a dislike of or looked down on Jews for the death of Jesus, because they theologically rationalized that Jews were no longer God’s people.  Paul had learned about all the circumstances of the Christians at Rome.  There were the heathen pagans who had converted to Christianity and the Jews who had followed Christ.  Thus, many contentions arose from the claims of the gentiles to equal privileges with the Jews, and from the absolute refusal of the Jews to admit these claims, unless the gentile converts became circumcised.  Paul wrote this epistle to adjust and settle these differences.  In the flow of this letter, Paul shifted his arguments, sometimes addressing the Jewish members of the church, sometimes the gentile membership and sometimes the church as a whole.  What do you think the relationship between Jewish and Christian people should be?

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