“‘Lord LORD: Jesus as YHWH in Matthew and Luke” Article Accepted to NTS

“‘Lord LORD: Jesus as YHWH in Matthew and Luke” Article Accepted to NTS

I’m pleased to pass along the news that my article, “‘Lord LORD: Jesus as YHWH in Matthew and Luke,” has been accepted for publication in New Testament Studies. The article abstract is as follows:ascension-255x340

Despite numerous studies of the κύριος [Lord] title in the New Testament, the significance of the double form κύριε κύριε occurring in Matthew and Luke has been overlooked, with most assuming the doubling merely communicates pathos. In contrast, this article argues that whereas a single κύριος might be ambiguous, the double κύριος formula always serves as a distinctive way to represent the Tetragrammaton outside the Gospels and that its use in Matthew and Luke is best understood as a way to represent Jesus as applying the name of the God of Israel to himself.

This is significant inasmuch as certain circles of scholarly orthodoxy have long held that, in contrast to the Gospel of John, Matthew and Luke do not represent Jesus as divine—or at least that Jesus never refers to himself as divine. This article challenges that perspective, suggesting that Matthew and Luke indeed identified Jesus with the name YHWH, much like Paul (Phil 2) and John.

14 Comments
  • Kepahs
    Posted at 19:46h, 26 October Reply

    See also
    “On The Bible” by Martin Buber how to enunciate YHWH

    yahshanet.com
    see also Romans from the Hebrew Perspective

  • Sherri Rogers
    Posted at 09:40h, 01 February Reply

    I have explored your site as well as the New Testament Studies site and cannot seem to locate this article. I am anxious to read it.

    • Jason A. Staples
      Posted at 21:44h, 01 February Reply

      Hi Sherri, that’s because it hasn’t yet been printed. It’ll be out in a few months. Sorry for the delay!

  • Dan Curtis
    Posted at 18:44h, 12 July Reply

    I am wondering why the difference between the terms “God” and “Elohim” (and it’s various forms) is invariably ignored in these discussions.

    • Jason A. Staples
      Posted at 16:04h, 03 August Reply

      “God” is just a translation of “Elohim,” so distinguishing between those two terms wouldn’t make much sense.

  • Andy Doerksen
    Posted at 13:48h, 03 August Reply

    Hello, Dr. Staples. I just discovered your site today. I can only find a ‘kurios-kurios’ pairing in the following verses: Matt. 7:21-22; 25:11; Lk. 6:46; Rev. 17:14; 19:16. In the Revelation occurrences, the second form of the word is a genitive-plural, indicating that the word-pair means “Lord of lords,” and not having any (immediate) link to YHWH. So when you say that “the double κύριος formula always serves as a distinctive way to represent the Tetragrammaton outside the Gospels” – what other verses are there, exactly?

    (Also: Why isn’t the year posted alongside the month/day of a posting/comment?)

    • Jason A. Staples
      Posted at 16:03h, 03 August Reply

      The Revelation occurrences aren’t the double kύριε formula in view in the article, though they are discussed. As you said, that combination is a simple and common combo that just means “lord of lords.” But the double kύριε used in the Gospels always specifically refers to the Tetragrammaton elsewhere. The article should be out in January if I remember correctly, so once it’s out all this should be clearer.

      As for the year not being listed, I suppose that’s just not the standard setting for this web template.

  • Jimmy Issa
    Posted at 15:26h, 24 December Reply

    Hello Dr. Staples. I am a layman trying to keep up with scholarship on the New Testament. I am interested in your research but I do not have access to the journal New Testament Studies and I otherwise can’t afford $25 for a paper. I wanted to ask if you’d be willing to send me a copy of the paper so that I could read it. Thanks for reading this comment.

    • Jason A. Staples
      Posted at 18:12h, 25 December Reply

      Done.

      • David Singleton
        Posted at 01:31h, 19 January Reply

        Could you send it to me as well? I’m in the same boat.

      • Jimmy Issa
        Posted at 23:06h, 09 March Reply

        Hello Dr. Staples. I would also just like to ask you some questions as your paper has come up in a discussion with someone else. Apparently, the term ‘Lord Lord’ is translated in the LXX, sometimes, from phrases in the Hebrew that do not come from Adoniah YHWH, but perhaps YHWH Elohim and others. For example, in the LXX, Exodus 34:6, Deuteronomy 10:17, and 1 Chronicles 17:24. What do you think is the significance of these passages on your paper? I’d love to hear your response. Also, I think kurios kurios is also used in the Apocalypse of Moses 25:3.

        I appreciate your words and answers.

        • Jason A. Staples
          Posted at 01:22h, 10 March Reply

          Hi Jimmy, good question. LXX Exodus 34:6 and Deuteronomy 10:17 don’t have κύριος κύριος, so they’re not really relevant here. What matters is what underlies the double κύριος when it appears.

          1 Chron 17:23 is a more interesting example. The Hebrew there has a string of various titles: “YHWH Sabaoth, the Elohe of Israel, Elohim to Israel,” which the LXX translates “kurie kurie pantokrator theos Israel” (Lord LORD, creator of all, God of Israel). The Hebrew doesn’t have Adonai YHWH, but κύριε κύριε there definitely translates YHWH, which is what really matters there—it’s another example of the double κύριος unambiguously marking the divine name YHWH.

          And yes, Apoc. Mos. 25:3 has the double κύριος; the article addresses that and a couple other examples from Greek pseudepigrapha. The bottom line is that unless we have the underlying Hebrew for a text, we can’t be 100% sure what underlies the Greek, though based on the remaining evidence, it’s most likely that the underlying Hebrew was Adonai YHWH.

          • Jimmy Issa
            Posted at 08:56h, 10 March

            Thanks!

  • Red Letter
    Posted at 12:06h, 29 April Reply

    Wow, terrific insight.

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