CLAIM: Roman Catholic scholars argue that Paul had been to Rome along with Peter. To support this claim, they point out that Paul stated that he was reminding them again. However, if Paul had never been to Rome, then why would he write this?
RESPONSE: This idea of a “reminder” is common throughout Scripture. In the OT, the Jews constantly needed reminded of what God had done for them. They even forgot how terrible Egyptian slavery was, when they were rescued in the Exodus! In the NT, we see that the people of God often need reminded, too. For instance, John writes, “I have not written to you because you do not know the truth, but because you do know it…” (1 Jn. 2:21). Peter writes, “For he who lacks these qualities is blind or short-sighted, having forgotten his purification from his former sins… 12Therefore, I will always be ready to remind you of these things, even though you already know them, and have been established in the truth which is present with you” (2 Pet. 1:9, 12). Of course, these believers didn’t actually forget these propositional truths about God. Instead, they needed to be refreshed. Paul had never personally taught these believers in Rome, but because they were believers in Christ, Paul probably assumed that they were aware of these core truths about Christ. He most likely wrote this, so that he wouldn’t come across in a patronizing way.