Kingdom of God Kingdom of my Father
- Just wondering if we have any reason to believe that the reality that
Jesus speaks of in Matt. 26:29 and parallels ("my father's kingdom") is
not the same one that he proclaims in Matt. 4:17 ("the Kingdom of
The reason I ask is that I have a suspicion that we might be wrong to
assume, as most exegetes do, that the "kingdom" whose "coming" Jesus
tells his disciples to pray for ((which, in context, is strictly
speaking, not the Kingdom of God, but their "Father's kingdom") is the
reality that he designates elsewhere in the Synoptic tradition as the
basileia tou theou..
If there is a difference in referent between "my father's kingdom" and
"the kingdom of God" (which, BTW, is never used in conjunction with the
verb "to come), then there may be something else going on in the
"kingdom petition of the LP than what is usually supposed.
Jeffrey B. Gibson, D.Phil. (Oxon)
1500 W. Pratt Blvd.
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
- Jeffrey asks whether "Kingdom of my father" might
have a different reference from "Kingdom of God".
Matthew 26.29 "until that day when I drink it new
with you in the kingdom of my father" //
Mark "until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God" //
Luke "until the kingdom of God comes"
Using different assumptions in turn:
a) Mat adapts Mark. Evidence: texts of Matt normally offer "of heaven",
occasionally "of God", here "of my father". Yes it is puzzling
that Matthew should switch to a different alternative when avoiding
just one more direct reference to God sitting in his source.
b) Ignoring Mark - just looking at Matthew - again it doesn't
look much different from a) except that we wouldn't know what
any source might have had.
Lohmeyer notes at this point the almost Johannine usage
of "My father , I and you"
Where else are kingdom and father in proximity? 1Cor 15.24
is one such place. Are there others? Would this offer any
hints as to why Matthew writes what he did?
Lk.22.29 "as my father has
allocated to me the/a kingdom" is much
more crucial as it shares a similar context of
eating and drinking.
Then there is the issue of "come" in proximity to kingdom
in Mat 6.10. We need to bear in mind that Lk 22.18 has
the same aorist stem, Mk 11.10
the participle of the (different) present stem, and other words
with similar but not identical meanings are at Mat.10.7 and
12.28 - on the latter verb I think Caragounis has some interesting
comment in his recent tome on the Greek language.
Surely we need to take account of related verb stems, and of
other verbs with similar but not identical sense.
Somewhat more tangentially on coming and going is
the variation between the kingdom coming, or arriving, or being near,
and people coming or going or entering into the kingdom. Is this
variation of imagery the kind of fluidity we should actually
expect in texts full of symbols, metaphors and images where
divergent perspectives even turn up in close proximity?
David Mealand, University of Edinburgh
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