It is true there is no perfect English translation of the bible so it is good to consult the original text.

Here is what we can read in Romans 3:28 of GNT:

“For we conclude that a person is put right with God only through faith, and not by doing what the Law commands.”(Romans 3:28, Good News Translation)

This is what is written in Romans 3:28 of the NRSV:

“For we hold that a person is justified by faith apart from works prescribed by the law.”(Romans 3:28, NRSV)

The NRSV is highly recommended by Bible Scholars.

Attached are the two ancient manuscripts:

First, the Codex Augiensis (Ninth Century MSS of Paul on parchment).

Romans 3.28 is on the right side. I added the numbers and I circled with red the word “Monon”.


Please keep in mind that the word “Monos” is an adjective = alone, the only person and “Monon” is an adverb = only.

The word “Monon” is in Romans 3:29.

Second, the Codex Sinaiticus (Fourth Century MSS).


Sinaiticus Pronunciation: logizometha gr dikaiousthai pistei anthropon horis ergon nomou.

And the word “Monon” again is in Romans 3:29: i Ioudaion o theos MONON? ouchi de ki ethnon? nai, kai ethnon.

What can we say about this?

The Romans 3:28 of GNT is a simplified paraphrase; it is not meant to be precise, but to get the ideas across clearly.

“Only” is not exactly in the text, but χωρὶς means “without/apart from.” So it’s “by faith, without works” literally;

It is overstated, over-translated. It gets across in simple language the general meaning, but it’s overstated. No exegetical conclusion can be derived from it.