18 There they crucified him… 19 Pilate also wrote an inscription and put it on the cross. It read, “Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Ioudaioi (traditionally translated as “the Jews”).20 Many of the Ioudaioi read this inscription, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city, and it was written in Hebrew, in Latin, and in Greek. 21 So the chief priests of the Ioudaioi said to Pilate, “Do not write, ‘The King of the Ioudaioi,’ but rather, ‘This man said, I am King of the Ioudaioi.’” 22 Pilate answered, “What I have written I have written.” (John 19:16b-22)

Pilate rightfully felt that the Judean leaders had manipulated him into ordering Jesus’ execution (John 19:12). As a result, he wanted to get back at them, hitting them where it hurt the most. Pilate understood that the Temple leaders had falsely used the “Son of God” argument against Jesus, so he turned their manipulation back on them when he recorded his criminal charge against Jesus.

Fra Angelico, from a Dominican Monastery in Fiesole (1434)

The text of the inscription about Jesus’ “crime” was placed on a sign to be nailed above his head. A painting by Fra Angelico (1434) suggests an interesting speculation about this inscription. Fra Angelico had a lifelong fascination with the written word. The accuracy of his Greek, Latin, and Hebrew inscriptions reveals his participation in the linguistic studies that flourished in Florence and Rome in the first half of the fifteenth century. In this crucifixion painting, he reconstructed what might have been the original Hebrew written on that sign.

The inscription in the painting reads in Hebrew, ישוע הנצרי ומלך היהודים.  This translates as, “Jesus the Nazarite and the King of the Jews.” Fra Angelico added “and” because grammatically it was very possibly (if not probably) the way the original text appeared.

So, how did Pilate return the favor to the Temple rulers who forced him into condemning Jesus to die? He did so by writing the statement of Jesus’ guilt in Hebrew in such a way that it actually portrayed Jesus as YHWH (יהוה) Himself!

But how?

Here is the sentence “Jesus of Nazareth and the King of the Jews” in Hebrew.  Remember, Hebrew is read from right to left.  I’ve highlighted the first letter of each word.

(ישוע הנצרי ומלך היהודים).

The acrostic formed by taking the first letter of each word of the sentence “Jesus of Nazareth and (“ו”) the King of the Jews” is “יהוה” (YHWH) – the covenant name of Israel’s God! This is why the Temple leaders were so unhappy with how Pilate versed his charge.



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    • Maurice Grace (Australia) The revelation about Pilate's declaration is very enlightening, quite remarkable. Thank you.

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    • This is extremely speculative. More evidence other than a translation of the Greek into Hebrew by a medieval painter is needed. There are much clearer reasons provided in the Gospel for the Jewish leaders' rejection of the phrase than such a dubious reconstruction. As it stood it implied Jesus was the King of the Jews, so they wanted it changed to "he said he was king of the Jews."

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    • To Fr. Christopher Kelley, thank's for the advise of the book "the quest for the true cross". I noticed that a part in hebrew is missing, somewhere in that church I read that the Translation would be "Jesus of Nazareth who died for me" - I don't know where they got this from, but very interesting and if it should be the real Translation they got the Point. For myself God guided me to the coptic Chapel in Jerusalem and to Sessoria in Rome, I did not know that those places had been connected with the cross.
  1. I have been studying into Hashem, and have found several ways to pronounce it based on the name Eliyahuw, well, why did the Rabbi, and High Priest agree to keep it a secret, and only use it on Yom Kipor? Because the H ending would mean it is Feminine, not Masculine, Therefore MoshAh, And Sarah, And even Yahuwdah, all include the masculine and feminine, So could they have pronounced it YAHUWAH, Wouldn't that be wonderful?
    • The "H" is the last of three letters in the Verbal Root, HWH, for the word "BE". The initial Y is understood to be the "Causative", thus making it "HE WHO CAUSES [all things] TO BE." Hence, at the Unburnt Bush, Moses hears the LORD say, "I AM WHO I AM!" Compare the sense of "Creator", or "GOTT" in German, compared to the English "Be-get/ be-gott." The English word "GOD" contains that sense of "Creator." Therefore the "H" should not be understood as an indication of sex at all. Grammatical Gender is not always identical to the "sex" of words.

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    • Do you believe that Yeshua Hamashiack is the son of YHVA-The G_d of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob?
      Do you believe that by his obedience even to death that he was risen from the dead and that assended to the clouds where he prepares a place for those that he redeemed

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  2. This article seems quite conjectural. There is so much blatant in the text that I don’t believe we have to reconstruct a possible Hebrew original to understand Yeshua as the enfleshed YHVH. Also, the “and” does seem gratuitous. I could understand “and” in a construction such as “Lord and King,” but since “the Nazarene” or “from Nazareth” is being used as a designation (similar to a last name), the “and” seems out of place.

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    • Well Josh the English is more descriptive than the Hebrew we add in words sometimes, which Eli has a point in Modern Hebrew, see we only have the consonants for one we have to guess the sounds a little to, in English we have 5 vowels as you know, though they can make similar sounds as well, but ancient Hebrew there were Grunts sometimes like with the Aleph for example, in Elhiym, or even dare I say Eluwth, or Elowth, or Ben, Benah, from Beniym, and Benowth, or Benuwth? After 2,000 years we are just guessing mostly, wouldn't you agree?
    • Prof. Carsten Peter Thiede, in "The Quest for the True Cross", p. 105, cites a Jewish scholar, Shalom Ben-Chorin, who rendered John 19:19 from Greek into the best Hebrew, and determined that the "and" (Vav) was proper. He did so independently. This certainly explains the vehemence ('heat') with which the Temple authorities protested to Pilate! Jews were accustomed to look for such acrostics. There is one in the Hebrew text of Esther, when she lays "everything on the table" before the King & Haman. God had His Hand on Esther, even if He seemed "absent" from the book, and unmentioned!
    • I have studied the scriptures and nowhere have I ever read Yahusha is Yahovah in the flesh. There is no reincarnation, no trinity and this comes out of paganism. I studied 2 years of biblical Hebrew and never would a Hebrew agree with your statements.

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  3. What I don't like about the pictures is they represent SUN worship of Ra. It comes from Nimrod and the Tower of Babel. Beyond that, was taught the inscription back in 2008 when was going to a Jewish Messianic Kehilah.
    • How So??? The skies in both pictures is DARK, as the Gospels record. The sun does not even have a glint here! In fact, NASA now can tell us precisely that the Paschal Moon rose over Jerusalem at dusk, 6:20pm, 5/6ths eclipsed, in the condition known as a "Blood Moon" on Friday, April 3, 33AD, by our current calendar. St Peter remarks on this, 7 weeks later, at Pentecost [Acts 2:20], quoting Joel. His hearers had all seen this! It had to send chills up their spines! (That day's darkness was caused by something other than the moon.)

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    • Admin bar avatar Dr. Eli Lizorkin-Eyzenberg, What I don't like about the picture, is that there are only 3 (stakes)=crosses instead of 5. Have you got a teaching that teaches that?
  4. The Hebrew word for "and" is just a single letter, and it can be either written or merely understood. There's nothing wrong with Dr. Eyzenberg's translation.
  5. This is a magnificent description of our LORD'S designation. In my book with Chuck Missler titled (The Bible Codes), I wish I could have included your fine illustration of יהוה in the Aramaic which was placed along with Greek and Latin inscriptions, on HIS (Greek) Staros (Torture Stake - or Tree, - or Post not the heretical sign of the Egyptian/Babylonian God (T for ) Tamuz. NEC
    • The greek word "Stauros" means Execution stake. There is no Greek work for "Cross" so an equivalent word was needed for the Latin word "Crucis". Stauros is the nearest Greek word that describes a crucis. Crucis is correctly translated into English as "Cross". Crucifixion was carried out on a number of different shaped "Cruces"(plural), a straight up stake, a Tau shape, a diagonal shape like the cross of the Apostle Andrew, a wheel like the one Catherine of Alexandria was crucified on. The traditional Cross is one of a number of crosses that Rome used to crucify its criminals.

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  6. I think you meant to say "hitting them where it hurts the most." instead of "heating them where it hurts the most. Just a small point but at least you know I am reading this. Good job though.
  7. I agree with Pastor Carlson. Whether or not an amazing coincidence or that the Ruach HaKodesh planted the thoughts in Pilate"s mind, I still believe that I can share this with my Bible students. Averaging 70 to 80 attending, they are all Evangelical Christians BUT they fully appreciate the fact that the Bible is a Jewish book from b'resheet to Revelation! Re: Mr. Whitaker's observation of heating vss hitting, that is not the only grammar/typo error. In what I believe is the 5th paragraph down, we have "how did Pilate returnED...". If you are seeking a proof-reader, I'm here! Hal
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