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In the first century AD it had a population of around one million people  in an area less than ten square miles. In 2 Cor 12:7 Paul refers to a "thorn in the flesh" which seems to be a reference to a physical ailment of some kind. Of this large population, it is estimated that there was between 40,000 and 50,000 Jews in the city. The direct or indirect result of this ailment appears to have affected Paul's eyesight.
It should not be surprising that there was already an established church before Paul's arrival. At the time he was gathering an offering from the Gentile Christians for the church in Jerusalem (; Acts ).
Paul's dedication belonged to Christ and his gospel as he preached it with his whole heart (1:9).
The gospel is also portrayed as the power of God unto salvation-that is able to save those who believe ().
The Epistle to the Romans was written to Christians residing in the city of Rome (1:7, 15). Then he began to go on various missionary journeys to bring the Gospel to the Gentiles.
Rome was the center of the Empire and was ethnically diverse. He was imprisoned in Rome on two occasions and was martyred under Caesar Nero.
He was present at the stoning of Stephen (Acts ; 8:1) and became a persecuter of the church (Acts 8:1-3; Phil 3:6).
 Paul, the author of thirteen New Testament Epistles, was born as an Israelite in Tarsus of Cilicia (Acts 22:3; Phil 3:5). He studied under Gamaliel in Jerusalem (Acts 22:3) and became a Pharisee (Phil 3:5).
He went into Damascus (Acts -19) then went to Arabia for some time (Gal ) before returning to Jerusalem (Acts -29; Gal ).
While seeking to have Christians bound, he was converted on the road to Damascus as Christ appeared to him (Acts 9:1-9).
At the time of writing the epistle, Paul was about to take the offering that he had collected from various churches to the poverty stricken church in Jerusalem.
After that, he intended on going to visit the Roman church for a time to preach the Gospel to them.
 The apostle identifies his recipients in 1:7 by saying: .