Original Research

Winning over a crisis: Understanding the ‘ποιεῖν’ in Matthew 7:24–27 from the nostalgia perspective

Pelita H. Surbakti, Esther W. Andangsari
Verbum et Ecclesia | Vol 44, No 1 | a2772 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ve.v44i1.2772 | © 2023 Pelita H. Surbakti, Esther W. Andangsari | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 20 November 2022 | Published: 28 June 2023

About the author(s)

Pelita H. Surbakti, Department of Theology, Faculty of Theology, Cipanas Theological Seminary, Cipanas-Cianjur, Indonesia
Esther W. Andangsari, Department of Psychology, Faculty of Humanities, Bina Nusantara University, Jakarta, Indonesia


Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5–7 has played a pivotal role in the history of Christianity. Occupying a crucial place in Christianity, Matthew 7:24–27 was considered to be the closing entry, as well as the passage’s concluding remark. In the passage, Jesus emphasises the importance of the ποιεῖν [to do] in his teachings rather than merely hearing Him. What does the meaning of the word ποιεῖν truly entail? What exactly did Jesus hope to accomplish through the word for a community that was entrenched in deep crisis? Utilising the notion of nostalgia in psychology research, this article concluded that, through Jesus’ word ποιεῖν, He urged believers to lead a ποιεῖν lifestyle, in order to evoke personal nostalgia apropos of God. This personal nostalgia is then expected to build up the ‘inner resource’ of the gospel’s readers, so that they can face the various life crises, which were portrayed as three forms of natural phenomena. Thus, the conclusion was aligned with the notion of ‘God with us’, which became the main theme of this gospel.

Intradisciplinary and/or interdisciplinary implications: This article demonstrates the role and benefits of empirical psychological research on nostalgia in understanding ποιεῖν in Matthew 7:24–27.


Gospel of Matthew; crisis; poiesis; inner resource; nostalgia.


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