Did Jesus Oppose the prosbul in the Forgiveness Petition of the Lord’s Prayer?

In: Novum Testamentum
Author: Lyndon Drake1
View More View Less
  • 1 , Auckland
Download Citation Get Permissions

Access options

Get access to the full article by using one of the access options below.

Institutional Login

Log in with Open Athens, Shibboleth, or your institutional credentials

Login via Institution


Buy instant access (PDF download and unlimited online access):


The forgiveness petition of the Lord’s Prayer includes the condition that the petitioner must forgive their own “debtors,” widely taken to be a metaphorical reference to sin-forgiveness. In this article, I argue that to Jesus’ contemporaries “debt” would have been an unusual way of referring to sin, and that the choices made by the Matthean and Lukan redactors show that they understood the Jesus-saying to enjoin debt-forgiveness as well as sin-forgiveness. The prosbul was the only way for pious contemporaries to avoid the Torah’s requirement to periodically forgive debts, and so Jesus opposed the prosbul by enjoining precisely the behaviour which the prosbul made unnecessary.

Content Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 327 75 4
Full Text Views 161 4 1
PDF Views & Downloads 52 13 1