Johann Peter Lange

“a representative of the school of double-sense expositors” – J.S. Russell

From His 1857 Work, Theologisch-homiletisches Bibelwerk
And His 1873 American Edition of Commentary on Romans

(On Matthew 11:12)
“the expression is metaphorical, denoting the violent bursting forth of the kingdom of heaven, as the kernel of the ancient theocracy, through the husk of the Old Testament. John and Christ are themselves the violent who take it by force — the former, as commencing the assault; the latter, as completing the conquest. Accordingly, this is a figurative description of the great era which had then commenced.” (Commentary, in loc.)


(On Matthew 11:16)
 the then existing last generation of Israel ” (Lange, in loc).

(On Matthew 16:27)
“emphatically placed at the beginning of the sentence; not a simple future, but meaning, The event is impending that He shall come; He is about to come.”


(On Matthew 23:36)
“The Lord mourns and laments over His own ruined Jerusalem… His whole pilgrimage on earth was troubled by distress for Jerusalem, like the hen which sees the eagle threatening in the sky, and anxiously seeks to gather her chickens under her wings. With such distress Jesus saw the Roman eagles approach for judgment upon the children of Jerusalem, and sought with the strongest solicitations of love to save them. But in vain! They were like dead children to the voice of maternal love!” (Comm. on Matt., p. 416)


(On Matthew 24:4-5)
“All those are essentially false Messiahs, who would assume the place which belongs to Christ in the kingdom of God. It includes, therefore, the enthusiasts who before the destruction of Jerusalem appeared as seducers of the people.” (Commentary on Matthew xxiv, 5)


(On Romans 13:11)
“Dr. Hodge objects at some length to the reference to the second coming of Christ. On the other hand most modern German commentators defend this reference. Olshausen, De Wette, Philippi, Meyer, and others, think no other view in the least degree tenable; and Dr. Lange, while careful to guard against extreme theories on this point, denies the reference to eternal blessedness, and admits that the Parousia is intended. This opinion gains ground among Anglo-Saxon exegetes.” (Lange’s American editor, Commentary on Romans, in loc.)


(On the time of I John’s composition)
“(the epistle) has quite the air of having been composed before the destruction of Jerusalem.”


Matthew 16:27-28 – (Using Interpretation Based Upon Double-Sense Theory)

‘In our opinion, it is necessary to distinguish between the advent of Christ in the glory of His kingdom within the circle of His disciples, and that same advent as applying to the world generally and for judgment. The latter is what is generally understood by the second advent: the former took place when the Saviour rose from the dead and revealed Himself in the midst of His disciples. Hence the meaning of the words of Jesus is: the moment is close at hand when your hearts shall be set at rest by the manifestation of My glory; nor will it be the lot of all who stand here to die during the interval. The Lord might have said that only two of that circle would die till then, viz., Himself and Judas. But in His wisdom He chose the expression, ” Some standing here shall not taste of death,” to give them exactly that measure of hope and earnest expectation which they needed.” (Large, Comm. on St. Matt. in loc.)

Matthew 21:41 – (Using Interpretation Based Upon Double-Sense Theory)
The Parousia of Christ is consummated in His last coming, but is not one with it. It begins in principle with the resurrection. (John xvi. 16) ; continues as a power through the New Testament period (John xiv. 3-19) ; and is consummated in the stricter sense in the final advent (I Cor. xv. 23; Matt. xxv. 31 ; 2 Thess. ii., etc.).”  (Lange on St. Matt. p. 388.)

Matthew 24 – (Using Interpretation Based Upon Double-Sense Theory)
“In harmony with apocalyptic style, Jesus exhibited the judgments of His coming in a series of cycles, each of which depicts the whole futurity, but in such a manner, that with every new cycle the scene seems to approximate to and more closely resemble the final catastrophe. Thus, the first cycle delineates the whole course of the world down to the end, in its general characteristics (ver. 4-14). The second gives the signs of the approaching destruction of Jerusalem, and paints this destruction itself as a sign and a commencement of the judgment of the world, which from that day onward proceeds in silent and suppressed days of judgment down to the last (ver. 15-28). The third describes the sudden end of the world, and the judgment which ensues (ver. 29-44). Then follows a series of parables and similitudes, in which the Lord paints the judgment itself, which unfolds itself in an organic succession of several acts. In the last act Christ reveals His universal judicial majesty. Chap. xxiv. 45-51 exhibits the judgment upon the servants of Christ, or the clergy. Chap. xxv. 1- 13 (the wise and foolish virgins) exhibits the judgment upon the Church, or the people. Then follows the judgment on the individual members of the Church (ver. 14-30). Finally, ver. 31-46 introduce the universal judgment of the world.”   (
Lange, Comm. on Matt. p. 418)

Matthew 24:23 – (His line of demarcation in Matthew 24)
Then (i.e., in the time intervening between the destruction of Jerusalem and the end of the world).” (p. 62)

II Thessalonians 2:2 (Using as proof-text that Parousia was distant)

“The first epistle [to the Thessalonians] is pervaded by the fundamental thought, “the Lord will come speedily:” the second, by the thought, “the Lord will not yet come speedily.” Both of these are in accordance with the truth; because, in the first part, the question is concerning the coming of the Lord in His dynamic rule in a religious sense; and, in the second part, concerning the coming of the Lord in a definite historical and chronological sense.” (Introd. to Comm. on Rom. p.23)

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