Skip to the main content

Review article

Prophecy of Gospels

Ivica Čatić ; Catholic Faculty of Theology in Đakovo, University of Josip Juraj Strossmayer, Đakovo, Croatia

Full text: croatian pdf 400 Kb

page 563-593

downloads: 466



Prophecy in the Gospels continues the Old Testament prophecy and draws from it some formal presuppositions, while striving towards its fulfilment. After offering a few methodological notes, in the first part this article presents the phenomenon of prophecy in the New Testament in general and concise manner. It points out, numerically, how representative and important it is. Presented data suggest the approach taken in studying this topic, which is also in accordance with the issues spelled out in the first section dedicated to methodological notes. Namely, the need to study contents of individual New Testament prophetic appearances will be pointed out as crucial. However, since these are often not explicitly discussed in the New Testament, one is left with a possibility of analysing those texts in which activity of prophetic characters in their historical context can be observed. This article will, therefore, present fundamental characteristics of the New Testament prophecy as manifested by most eminent prophetic characters: John the Baptist and Jesus Christ. John the Baptist will be presented concisely via typical moments from all three synoptic gospels (because in the Fourth Gospel he does not have the status of prophet), while most space will be given to the Gospel of Luke, since it writes most extensively on this prophet. The relatively short section on John the Baptist is followed by a discussion on Jesus´s prophetic activity. The article presents Jesus´s prophetic character in general via the most characteristic moments from all four canonical gospels, as is usually the case in biblical-theological handbooks. The originality of this article follows after this overview and consists of an attempt to situate the Lord´s prophetic activity in the historical context of the 1st century in order to better understand his words and deeds. For that purpose, some characteristic texts were chosen and these should cast a new light on his prophetic activity from an angle that is often neglected. In that sense, the article aims at making a step forward in relation to usual taxonomy of Jesus´s prophetic activity and at seeing some examples in a largerm perspective. Through their concreteness, those examples break through formalisation, characteristic for attempts of systematic accounts of biblical-theological topics, especially when it comes to prophecy. Only by observing prophetic words and deeds in their historical context, can one reach the dynamism that allows the prophecy already in the Old Testament, but especially on its peak in Jesus Christ, to cast a new light on a historical moment, offer needed critique, guidelines, and transformative vision of reality through the word of God.


Gospels, prophecy, John the Baptist, Jesus Christ, socio-religious context, »moral economy«.

Hrčak ID:



Article data in other languages: croatian

Visits: 812 *