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In the second coming of Our God, are there two persons who will appear in the clouds?

Titus 2:13 (KJV)

Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ.

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Mod notice: Comments are for requesting or suggesting improvements to posts, not for debating the issues posts happen to be about. –  Caleb Oct 2 at 13:19

3 Answers 3

The Syriac Vulgate of the New Testament (Peshitta) appeared before the Fourth Century, and appears to shed some light that "the savior Jesus Christ" and "the great God" were appositive phrases.

The verse appears as follows:

Titus 2:13 (Syriac Vulgate)
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The word for "glory" (highlighted in yellow above) possesses the third person singular suffix. We can compare with Kiraz (2003) as follows:

enter image description here

The words that follow the word for "glory" are all emphatic, which means they are definite. The words "Jesus Christ" are modified by the adjective for savior, which is emphatic.

In other words, all the nouns/adjectives following the word for "glory" are in the emphatic case; the masculine singular suffix to the noun for "glory" is in the third person masculine singular (and thus referring to the "glory" of one particular person); and finally, the phrase "and of our savior Jesus Christ" does not possess the indicator for the genitive case (ܕ), which suggests it is an appositive for the phrase immediately preceding, which is "of the great God."

In summary, the grammatical structure of this verse in the Peshitta suggests that the Syriac writers during the Fourth Century (or earlier) had taken the phrase "and of our savior Jesus Christ" in this verse to be an appositive for the phrase "of the great God."

Kiraz, George Anton (2003). Analytical Lexicon of the Syriac New Testament. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

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Folks - I did not write the Peshitta. –  Joseph Oct 28 at 0:07
In addition to not addressing the Greek text whatsoever (rather than treating the Syriac as an early translation that provides supplemental evidence for an argument from the Greek text), I also downvoted for what I believe to be erroneous information (commonly espoused by Aramaic primacists) in your dating of the Peshitta (had you said 'by the fifth century' rather than 'before the fourth century', it would be accurate). –  Dan Oct 28 at 19:28
Useful and interesting as usual Joseph, thanks. –  Jack Douglas Oct 30 at 7:05
Conversation on this post moved to chat. –  Dan Oct 31 at 9:51
@majnemɪzdæn the date seems to be controversial, but this answer at least seems to support Joseph's choice of words. –  Jack Douglas Oct 31 at 9:59

The 'and' is not concatenating different persons but rather is used to concatenate different characteristics of our blessed Lord Jesus, Who is both God and Saviour.

Having said that, we know that our God is a tri-une God. He is One God in three persons, however this is not what is meant in this text. As when the Bible speaks of the appearing of the Lord Jesus, on many occasions, we see that it is He who has to appear.

  • He is coming for His bride (1 Thes. 4:17-18).

  • He is coming to judge the world in righteousness (Acts 17:31), (Rev. 1:7).

  • He is the One who knows not the day and hour in which He will come, never-the-less when the time is right, He will descend with a shout (Mat. 24:36; 1 Thes. 4:16).

  • It doesn't matter if you understand separate occasions for the above or just one momentous event, He is "the Son of Man [who] will come again with his Father's glory" (Mat. 16:27).

  • Jesus is the one coming in the clouds, yet there are multiple references to Him being accompanied by a host of angles (Mat. 16:27-28), a host of saints (Jude 1:14) [some say 'saints' refers to the angelic host again, and others to resurrected believers in Christ who accompany Him in that glorious moment when their bodies will be redeemed].


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If you are voting down the answer could you provide a Biblical response as to what is incorrect? –  G.Rassovsky Jul 31 at 8:24
Plus one from me! Don –  rhetorician Nov 27 at 17:23
Please don't "preach" at readers. Instead, describe your perspective without prescribing it. We're looking for lectures rather than sermons. Please keep in mind that not all of your readers here are Christians. –  Dan Nov 27 at 20:30
G: - 1.) - Your interpretation is not supported by the context, or linguistic argument to show "kai," (in this construction), is "constructing" one entity from two, or being used in appositive construction. - 2.) - Your argument is a logical fallacy: presupposing that God is Triune, to prove the text substantiates that God is Triune. - 3.) - To prove the argument linguistically, you could try showing that even secular people would arrive to the same conclusion, having no prior bias. - 4.) - This isn't saying your conclusion is wrong--but rather the argument provided is invalid. –  e.s. kohen Nov 28 at 18:27

The content/context of this text/letter should be what is used to inform how it should be interpreted--not modern Oneness/Unitarian/Trinitarian doctrines in the Christian Church.

Answer: This text absolutely indicates two personas--substantiated by the fact that Paul is explicit about the two identities mentioned earlier in the text.

Paul is very unambiguous, by using the term "Father." ---

Compare Titus 1:4 and 2:13:

Titus 1:4, NASB - To Titus, my true child in a common faith: Grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Savior.

Titus 1:4, Byz - Tίτῳ γνησίῳ τέκνῳ κατὰ κοινὴν πίστιν· χάρις, ἔλεος, εἰρήνη ἀπὸ θεοῦ πατρός, καὶ κυρίου Ἰησοῦ χριστοῦ τοῦ σωτῆρος ἡμῶν.

Titus 2:13, NASB - looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus,

Titus 2:13, Byz - προσδεχόμενοι τὴν μακαρίαν ἐλπίδα καὶ ἐπιφάνειαν τῆς δόξης τοῦ μεγάλου θεοῦ καὶ σωτῆρος ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦ χριστοῦ

It stands to reason, that the only reasonable interpretation is to affirm that Paul wasn't contradicting himself in the letter.

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I'm having trouble seeing how this question can be resolved by comparison with 1:4. Titus 2:13 is a classic TSKS construction, a fact that has direct bearing on the relationship between the two substantives ("God" and "Savior"). Titus 1:4, on the other hand, doesn't begin with the article so does not fall into the same category. I don't see how we can call this the exact same construction. –  Susan Nov 28 at 1:57
@Susan ... 1.) - I removed the argument, to avoid lengthy debate. 2.) - However, from the context of the text, it doesn't stand to reason that Paul had one point of view at the beginning, and then switched in the middle, suggesting that Paul, too, was undergoing some internal debate over Oneness vs. Trinity doctrine.construction argument at a later point. 3.) - If the issue escalates, specifically in regards to TSKS, I will address it, but the way I rephrased kind of makes it moot. –  e.s. kohen Nov 28 at 2:11
Got it, thanks for editing. –  Susan Nov 28 at 2:12

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