οὗτός ἐστιν ᾽Ιησοῦς ὁ βασιλεὺς τῶν ᾽Ιουδαίων

King Aslan

“This is Jesus the King of the Jews” was a mocking but ironically true description placed over the head of a Nazarene, who was hanged on the Roman cross, according to the gospel of Matthew.  In the opening of this gospel, the author could not resist the temptation of enlightening us that in Bethlehem of Judea, and during the reign of Herod the king, a Nazarene child was born. This child was the foretold king of the Jews by the prophet. David’s royal offspring confirmed in God’s house and in God’s kingdom forever. This child’s throne was said to have been established forever.

Christ Jesus’ person and works were a royal parousia, inauguration of the kingdom of God. The good new is that this King is our Lord and Savior. He is a servant King. The King who brings God’s Kingdom on earth as it is in Heaven.

G. Goldsworthy said it well, “Jesus is declared to be the bringer of the kingdom through his life (which includes his miracles and his teachings), his death and his resurrection.” (Goldsworthy 2000: n.p)

Herman Ridderbos also correctly contended that “[t]he kingdom is concentrated in him[Jesus] in its present and future aspects alike.”(Ridderbos 1982: 657) because all the parousia about the kingdom centers in the person of Jesus as God’s Messiah.

God’s kingdom came on earth as it is in heaven. God’s reign that necessarily brings order and justice, the inauguration of the restoration of God’s creation purpose is already here but not yet. It awaits a future consummation, the times of restoration of all things. Before those times, argued George Eldon Ladd, “the kingdom of God has entered this age and invaded the kingdom of Satan in spiritual power to bring to men in advance the blessings”(Ladd 1984: 609). This is kingdom that is coming, and that is now here.

Christians are citizens of the kingdom of God. They recognized already the supreme authority of God. They freely and joyfully bow down and confess that Jesus is Lord.  They are the people who are participating through faith and obedience in the reign of Christ Jesus, their sovereign Lord. The kingdom of God is within their reach¹ (Luke 17:21). God had already delivered them from the domain of darkness and transferred them to the kingdom of His beloved Son (Col. 1:13). The beloved Son is their King forever. They are the Church. Christ Jesus became their salvation. He is Lord. He is King. He reigns.

Bibliography:

Goldsworthy, G. (2000) ‘Kingdom of God’ in Alexander, T. D., & Rosner, B. S. (Eds.) New dictionary of biblical theology. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.

Ladd, George Eldon (1984) ‘Kingdom of Christ, God, Heaven’ in Walter Elwell (ed.), Evangelical Dictionary of Theology. Grand Rapids: Baker.

Ridderbos, Herman (1982) ‘Kingdom of God, Kingdom of Heaven’, in J. D. Douglas (ed.), New Bible Dictionary 2nd edn.; Leicester, England: InterVarsity Press.


[1] N. T Wright(1996:469) and G. R. Beasley-Murray (1992:23) argued that the kingdom of God is ”within your reach” is more likely than ”in your midst”.

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10 thoughts on “οὗτός ἐστιν ᾽Ιησοῦς ὁ βασιλεὺς τῶν ᾽Ιουδαίων

  1. What about the version detailed the Gospel of Peter where Jesus is crucified in Rome by Herod Antipas, not Jerusalem by Pontius Pilate, or the version recounted in the Gospel of Truth where Jesus is nailed to a living tree, not a Roman cross, which then spews forth fruit like an exploding piñata…. 🙂

          • Looks like that article got that part wrong. Apologies.

            Regardless, in Peter Jesus is sentenced by Herod Antipas, NOT Pontius Pilate. Huge script blunder there, wouldn’t you say?

            And what about being nailed to a living tree (not a Roman cross) which then gave forth fruit? Another huge script blunder.

            Seems no one could really get the Jesus story right, could they? Personally, i like the Dragon-Slaying Jesus in the Infancy Gospels 🙂 I also much prefer the original ending in the oldest synoptic work, Mark… the one that didn’t have a resurrection. Makes you wonder why the new (longer) ending was secretly added by Christians in the 4th Century, doesn’t it?

          • I am humbled, John, you admitted and apologies the sloppy data of Jesus been crucified in Rome. When your sources are Googled, make sure to read original sources to confirm what others are saying.

            Gospel of Peter informs that Pilate was innocent(washed his hands) while Jews (Sanhedrin) and Herod were guilt (did not wash their hands) in sentencing Jesus.(G.Peter 1:1-2) So no it is not a blunder John.

            John, let us turn to “living tree”. Read the Gospel of truth for yourself(http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/gospeltruth.html) Could you cite where it say that?

          • Of course i’ll admit when i’m wrong. To do so is only rational.

            I’ve read the gospel of truth, i provided the link. It’s all there, “Nailed to a tree”

            You didn’t answer my question, though. Why do you think 4th Century Christians saw it necessary to molest the oldest synoptic work, Mark, and secretly insert a new ending?

          • John, I want to first deal with what you said about Jesus being crucified in Rome according to Gospel of Peter and on a living tree that bears fruits in Gospel of Truth.

            John, a cross was theologically connected to the curse of hanging on a tree in Old Testament(Deuteronomy 21:23) This is why Paul wrote: “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us—for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who is hanged on a tree”(Galatians 3:13). See also 1 Peter 2:24; Acts 5:30, 10:39, 13:29.The Greek term used is ξύλον(wood, tree, clubs, stocks)

            Paul, Luke(Acts), and Peter used both cross and it’s it theological view, “hanging on a tree” in the same letters.

            7th paragraph of Gospel of Truth, translated by Robert M. Grant, states: “For this reason Jesus appeared. He took that book as his own. He was nailed to a cross. He affixed the edict of the Father to the cross.”

            I have read three different translations and I do not see where your claim “of Jesus crucified on a living tree bearing fruits” is.

            John, you need to understand terminologies in their proper context.

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