As Christ sends out his disciples he warns them that they had called him Beelzebul and it was likely they will suffer the same fate if not worse.

Mattew 10:25

25 It is enough for students to be like their teachers, and servants like their masters. If the head of the house has been called Beelzebul, how much more the members of his household!

But according to Matthew's chronology it is only in Matthew 12 that Christ is called Beelzebul after having healed the blind and mute man.

22 Then they brought him a demon-possessed man who was blind and mute, and Jesus healed him, so that he could both talk and see. 23 All the people were astonished and said, “Could this be the Son of David?”24 But when the Pharisees heard this, they said, “It is only by Beelzebul, the prince of demons, that this fellow drives out demons.”

Is there a chronological issue in the above text

How can we understand the above chronology?

  • As answered by @R. Emery the Pharisees (in Matthew's account) had previuosly referred to 'the prince of demons' but not, specifically, to 'Beelzebul'. This incident clearly occurs early on in Jesus' ministry.
    – Nigel J
    Commented Aug 28, 2020 at 15:56

2 Answers 2


Matthew 9

32 While they were going out, a man who was demon-possessed and could not talk was brought to Jesus. 33 And when the demon was driven out, the man who had been mute spoke. The crowd was amazed and said, “Nothing like this has ever been seen in Israel.”

34 But the Pharisees said, “It is by the prince of demons that he drives out demons.”


The (IMHO) simplest explanation is that it was reasonably common among Pharisees to call Jezus Beelzebul, just like we sometimes have nicknames for famous persons / organization we don't like. It happened before chapter 10 and probably many times later, but Matthew found it only important enough to mention it after healing the blind and mute man in chapter 12.

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