The Kingdom of God is “Within your reach”


Larry Hurtado's Blog

It’s amazing how slowly the work of papyrologists influences the work of other scholars.  Here’s an example.  In Luke 17:20-21, Pharisees ask Jesus when the kingdom of God will come, and Jesus responds exhorting that it doesn’t come “with observation” (a term used also for medical observation of symptoms) and by pointing “here or there,” for the kingdom of God is ἐντὸς ὑμῶν (“entos humon”).  

The plural form of the pronoun (“humon“) is commonly recognized as calling into question the translation of the phrase in the KJV, “the kingdom of God is within you” (as if in some sort of mystical sense.)  So, commentaries now typically prefer something like, “the kingdom of God is among you” or “in your midst”.

But 70 years ago, C. H. Roberts pointed out that the expression (and variations of it) in papyri roughly contemporary with the NT writings more…

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