Original Research - Special Collection: UP Faculty of Theology Centenary Volume One

The spatial dynamics of Jesus as King of Israel in the Gospel according to John

Jan Van der Watt
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 72, No 4 | a3446 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v72i4.3446 | © 2016 Jan Van der Watt | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 22 April 2016 | Published: 31 October 2016

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Jan Van der Watt, Department of New Testament, University of the Free State, South Africa


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Abstract

The presence of the kingdom of God is usually associated with the theology of the Synoptic Gospels, but this article describes how the concept of kingdom also plays an important role in the Gospel of John, as Busse also argues. It is argued that the Johannine group identify themselves as children of the King and regard themselves as members of the kingdom, of which Jesus, the Messiah, is the major representative on Earth. What is expected of a king in ancient Hellenistic times is true of Jesus. He has power, gives and interprets commandments, judges, saves and protects. Although these events are historically set in a politically tense situation between the Jews and Romans, Jesus’ kingship is from above, revealing God’s narrative of salvation and eternal life in the world below. In this way God’s transcendental narrative of love, life, truth and light serves as a heuristic tool to understand and interpret events in the world below.

Keywords

Kingship in John; Koningskap in Johannes Jesus as king; Jesus as koning Kingdom of God; Koninkryk van God Jesus as judge; Jesus as regter

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