Did Jesus utter a false prophecy?


Matthew 16:28

“Amen, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom”

Of course I’ve read this but never really focused on it until I read through Matthew’s Gospel again. How do we reconcile these words with the fact that everyone who was standing there most certainly is dead and 1900 years later Jesus hasn’t come in his Kingdom?

The first part states that they will not die, the second part states they will be alive and see Christ coming in his kingdom, this didn’t happen. How do we explain this?


Two plausible answers that I’ve heard:

1). The very next event described after that verse is the Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-13). Peter, James and John saw a glimpse of how Jesus will appear to us in the Kindgom.

Or …

2). John the Evangelist was one of the people being addressed by Christ in Matthew 16:28, and before John died, he received the revelation on Patmos in whch he saw a vision of the Second Coming of Christ at the end of history, the vision which is contained in the Book of Revelation.


The diciples all saw the ressurected Christ and his ascention into heaven (apart from judas).

Mark 16:19 “After the Lord had spoken to them, he was taken up into heaven and he sat at the right hand of God”

maybe that’s the answer?
or number 2 above :smiley:

There is always an explanation for the things in the bible we don’t always understand, we just have to search for long enough, that’s my opinion anyway.


Pete, I think your answer is more likely.


If you read “Coming Soon” by Michael Barber, which discusses this verse in the context of the Book of Revelation, he argues it’s a prophecy of the destruction of Jerusalem and the “passing of the torch” to Christ’s Church, his new Kingdom.

Great book, by the way, definitely worth reading.


Robertson’s Word Pictures of the New Testament

Some of them that stand here (tineߠtwn ode estwtwn). A crux interpretum in reality. **Does Jesus refer to the Transfiguration, the Resurrection of Jesus, the great Day of Pentecost, the Destruction of Jerusalem, the Second Coming and Judgment? **We do not know, only that Jesus was certain of his final victory which would be typified and symbolized in various ways. The apocalyptic eschatological symbolism employed by Jesus here does not dominate his teaching. He used it at times to picture the triumph of the kingdom, not to set forth the full teaching about it. The kingdom of God was already in the hearts of men. There would be climaxes and consummations.


I agree with Pete as well. As Jesus said to Pilate, “My kingdom is not of this world.” He entered into his kingdom when he ascended into Heaven at sat at His Father’s right hand.


I agree with this view, after reading David Currie’s book “Rapture”. In the previous verse Jesus says “For the Son of man is to come with His angels in the glory of His Father, and then He will repay every many for what he has done.”

Luke 19:41-44 draws a good connection to the idea of Jesus coming. "When (Jesus) . . . saw the city, He wept over it, saying . . . ‘The days shall come upon you, when your enemies will cast up a bank about you and surround you, and hem you in on every side . . . and they will not leave one stone upon another in you; because you did not know the time of your visitation.’ "

If Jesus publicly came into His Kingdom at the destruction of the Temple, then He was correct in saying some of them would live to see the event. From that point forward the Church could grow unimpeded and would no longer be considered a sect within Judaism.


This is the same explanation I recently read in a Scott Hahn bible study. Kingdom here refers to the Church and the desctruction of Jerusalem in (?) AD 78.


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