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Very astute. The statement was intended very generally as a riposte to standard evangelical construals of the kingdom of God. It referenced both prophetically-minded and apocalyptically-minded Jews of the time—Jesus broadly shared their outlook on Israel’s situation.

Within that there may be scope for differences of opinion. But my argument would be that in his thought and language Jesus is much closer to the biblical prophets down to Daniel than to the apocalyptic thought, much of it taking its cue from Daniel, that emerged from the early second century onwards. I don’t see anything to suggest that Jesus merged Gehenna with Tartarus, and there is much, of course, in his teaching that aligns him with the prophets. The claim obviously needs substantiating, but I think that there is enough of the historical realist about Jesus to justify the contention.

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