This verse goes as follows (R.H. Charles, The Ascension of Isaiah, 1900, p. 121):
• In manuscript 'L2' (Latin 2):
Et princeps mundi illius extendet manum suam in filium ⎾dei⏋, [et occidet illum] et suspendet illum in ligno et occidet nesciens, qui sit.
• In manuscript 'S' (Latin translation of the Slavonic version):
Et princeps mundi illius propter filium ejus extendet manus suas in eum et suspendent illum in ligno, et occidet eum nesciens qui sit.
I can’t show the Ethiopian version nor would I be able to translate it. I only give M.A. Knibb’s comment on 9:14 in J.H. Charlesworth, The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha volume 2, p. 170: ‘Eth “by the hand of his son” ’
As the S-version contains the ‘princeps et filius eius’ phrase like the Ethiopian (Knibb’s note), I based my translation below on ‘S’.
It seems clear that the mundus in ‘mundi illius’ (‘of that world’) is the Latin equivalent of the Greek κόσμος, which is a frequently used encrypted name for the Roman empire in the NT and other early Christian writings.
- The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha volume 2, p. 170:
And the god of that world will stretch out [his hand against the Son], and they will lay their hands upon him and hang him upon a tree, not knowing who he is.
- My translation:
And the emperor of that world, by the hand of his son, stretches out his hands against him, and they hang him on the wood, and he kills him not knowing who he is.
The ‘princeps mundi illius’ is a quite transparent encryption of the Roman emperor, and the father-son combination applies to Vespasian and Titus. By emphasizing Vespasian’s primary role, the Roman emperor and Jesus are opposed. It is by the hands of his son Titus that the Roman emperor Vespasian captured Jesus and crucified him. The Romans killed Jesus, not knowing that he was the messiah. They couldn’t know, because at that moment Jesus wasn’t the messiah yet, he was one of the rebellion leaders in besieged Jerusalem. Jesus only became the messiah by the fact that he was crucified and survived his execution, he was not killed as this verse says. Christianity is based on the false triad of Jesus’ crucifixion – death – resurrection, but the historical sequence is crucifixion – survival. This extremely unlikely survival in the right place (Jerusalem) at the right moment (the ‘day of the Lord’) transformed Jesus into the long-awaited messiah.