Date of Publication

5-24-2019

Degree Type

Honors Thesis

Department

English

First Advisor

Dr. Austin M. Busch, Associate Director

Abstract

There is no doubt that the Bible is filled with the concept of violence, especially in the New Testament, where Jesus faces the violence of persecution in his own life. There is also no doubt that the synoptic gospels each has its own way of addressing this violence: Mark responds to the violence with Jesus’s passivity, while Matthew, Luke, and John, each to their own extent, teach about non-retaliation and doing good to those who wrong you through their depictions of Jesus’s response to violence. Significantly, Matthew depicts Jesus’s response to violence in two different ways: first, Jesus teaches submission and peacemaking on earth, but when he speaks of his post-resurrection return to the earth, he promises vengeance in the eschatological setting. These two different positions on violence create two contradictory versions of Jesus in Matthew: the peaceful, earthly Jesus, and the vengeful and violent eschatological Jesus.

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