Matthew 12 – Commentary

Matthew 12 Commentary

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Matthew 12 : Kata Matthaion 12 : ΚΑΤΑ ΜΑΤΘΑΙΟΝ 12

Last updated 20th April 2012

1. At that time Jesus went through the cornfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry and began to pluck the heads of corn and to eat them.
Ἐν
ἐκείνω τῷ καιρῷ ἐπορεύθη Ἰησοῦς τοῖς σάββασιν διὰ τῶν σπορίμων· οἱ δὲ μαθηταὶ αὐτοῦ ἐπείνασαν καὶ ἤρξαντο τίλλειν στάχυας καὶ ἐσθίειν.

2. The Pharisees saw this and said to Him:
“Look, Your disciples are doing what it is not permitted to do on the Sabbath
!”
οἱ
δὲ Φαρισαῖοι ἰδόντες εἶπαν αὐτῷ· ἰδοὺ οἱ μαθηταί σου ποιοῦσιν οὐκ ἔξεστιν ποιεῖν ἐν σαββάτῳ.

3. He said to them:
“Have you not read what David did when he and the men with him were hungry
,
δὲ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς· οὐκ ἀνέγνωτε τί ἐποίησεν Δαυὶδ ὅτε ἐπείνασεν καὶ οἱ μετ’ αὐτοῦ,

4. how he entered into the house of God and ate the holy bread, which was not permitted to him or to those men with him but only to the priests?
πῶς
εἰσῆλθεν εἰς τὸν οἶκον τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ τοὺς ἄρτους τῆς προθέσεως ἔφαγον οὐκ ἐξὸν ἦν αὐτῷ φαγεῖν οὐδὲ τοῖς μετ’ αὐτοῦ εἰ μὴ τοῖς ἱερεῦσιν μόνοις;

5. Or have you not read in the Law that on the Sabbath day the priests in the Temple break the Sabbath yet are considered blameless?
οὐκ ἀνέγνωτε ἐν τῷ νόμῳ ὅτι τοῖς σάββασιν οἱ ἱερεῖς ἐν τῷ ἱερῷ τὸ σάββατον βεβηλοῦσιν καὶ ἀναίτιοι εἰσιν;
priests
– hiereis – ἱερεῖς temple – hiero – ἱερῷ – like “hierarchy” – literally, the leadership – “archy” – within priests – “hier”

6. I tell you that here there is One who is greater than the Temple.
λέγω
δὲ ὑμῖν ὅτι τοῦ ἱεροῦ μεῖζον ἐστιν ὣδε.

7. If you had known what this means: “I desire mercy and not sacrifice”, you would not have condemned the innocent.
εἰ
δὲ ἐγνώκειτε τί ἐστιν· ἔλεος θέλω καὶ οὐ θυσίαν, οὐκ ἂν κατεδικάσατε τοὺς ἀναιτίους.

8. For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.”
κύριος
γὰρ ἐστιν τοῦ σάββατου υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου.
Sabbath
– Sabbatou – σάββατου

9. He left there and went into their synagogue.
Καὶ
μεταβὰς ἐκεῖθεν ἦλθεν είς τὴν συναγωγὴν αὐτῶν·

10. It happened that there was a man there who had a withered hand. And they challenged Him, asking:
“Is it permitted to heal on the Sabbath day?”,
so that they might have grounds to accuse Him
.
καὶ
ἰδοὺ ἄνθρωπος χεῖρα ἔχων ξηράν. καὶ ἐπηρώτησαν αὐτὸν λέγοντες· εἰ ἔξεστιν τοῖς σάββασιν θεραπεύειν; ἵνα κατηγορήσωσιν αὐτοῦ.

11. He said to them:
“Is there any man among you, who, if he had a single sheep, and it fell into a pit on the Sabbath day, would not grab hold of it and pull it out
?
δὲ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς· τίς ἔσται ἐξ ὑμῶν ἄνθρωπος ὃς ἕξει πρόβατον ἓν καὶ ἐὰν ἐμπέσῃ τοῦτο τοῖς σάββασιν είς βόθυνον, οὐχὶ κρατήσει αὐτὸ καὶ ἐγερεῖ;

12. A man is worth so much more than a sheep! Therefore it is permitted to do good on the Sabbath.”
πόσῳ
οὐν διαφέρει ἄνθρωπος προβάτου. ὥστε ἔξεστιν τοῖς σάββασιν καλῶς ποιεῖν.
is worth so much more than” – the Greek word means “is superior to” – diapherei – διαφέρει

13. Then He said to the man:
“Stretch out your hand.”
Then the man stretched it out and it was restored and healed, like the other one
.
τότε
λέγει τῷ ἀνθρώπῳ· ἔκτεινον σου τὴν χεῖρα. καὶ ἐξέτεινεν καὶ ἀπεκατεστάθη ὑγιὴς ὡς ἄλλη.
healed
– hugies – ὑγιὴς – This is the root of the English words “hygiene” and “hygienic”

14. Then the Pharisees left that place and held a meeting against Him about how they could destroy Him.
ἐξελθόντες
δὲ οἱ Φαρισαῖοι συμβούλιον ἔλαβον κατ’ αὐτοῦ ὅπως αὐτὸν ἀπολέσωσιν.

15. Knowing this, Jesus departed from that place. And many crowds followed Him, and He healed them all.
δὲ Ἰησοῦς γνοὺς ἀνεχώρησεν ἐκεῖθεν. καὶ ἠκολούθησαν αὐτῷ ὄχλοι πολλοί, καὶ ἐθεράπευσεν αὐτοὺς πάντας

16. And He strictly requested of them that they should not make Him known.
καὶ
ἐπετίμησεν αὐτοῖς ἵνα μὴ φανερὸν αὐτὸν ποιήσωσιν,
they should not make Him known” – in Greek, “that they should not make him open”, or “make him manifest” – me phaneron auton poiesosin – μὴ φανερὸν αὐτὸν ποιήσωσιν

17. So that the prophecy of the prophet Isaiah might be fulfilled, which says:
ἵνα
πληρωθῇ τὸ ῥηθὲν διὰ Ἠσαΐου τοῦ προφήτου λέγοντος·
prophecy – in Greek, “what was said through the prophet Isaiah” – “to rhethen” – τὸ ῥηθὲν

18. “Behold My chosen Son, My beloved, My soul is greatly pleased with Him. I will place My Spirit upon Him, and He will declare judgement to the Gentiles.
ἰδοὺ
παῖς μου ὃν ᾑρέτισα,
ἀγαπητός μου ὃν εὐδόκησεν ψυχή μου·
θήσω
τὸ πνεῦμα μου ἐπ’ αὐτόν,
καὶ
κρίσιν τοῖς ἔθνεσιν ἀπαγγελεῖ.

19. He will not quarrel or shout, and no-one will hear His voice in the streets.
οὐκ
ἐρίσει οὐδὲ κραυγάσει
οὐδὲ ἀκούσει τις ἐν ταῖς πλατείαις τὴν φωνὴν αὐτοῦ

20. He will not break a bruised reed, and He will not put out a smoking wick, until, victorious, He proclaims judgement.
κάλαμον
συντετριμμένον οὐ κατεάξει
καὶ
λίνον τυφόμενον οὐ σβέσει,
ἕως
ἂν ἐκβάλῃ εἰς νῖκος τὴν κρίσιν.

21. And the Gentiles will trust in His name.”
καὶ
τῷ ὀνόματι αὐτοῦ ἔθνη ἐλπιοῦσιν.

22. Then a blind and dumb man, who was possessed by a demon, was brought to Him. Then He healed Him, so that the dumb man was able to both speak and see.
Τότε
προσηνέχθη αὐτῷ δαιμονιζόμενος τυφλὸς καὶ κωφόs, καὶ ἐθεράπευσεν αὐτόν, ὥστε τὸν κωφὸν λαλεῖν καὶ βλέπειν.

23. Then all the crowds were amazed and they said:
“Could this man really be the Son of David
?”
καὶ
ἐξίσταντο πάντες οἱ ὄχλοι καὶ ἔλεγον· μήτι οὗτος ἐστιν υἱὸς Δαυίδ;

24. When the Pharisees heard that they said:
“This man does not cast out demons except by Beelzebub the ruler of the demons
.”
οἱ
δὲ Φαρισαῖοι ἀκούσαντες εἶπον οὗτος οὐκ ἐκβάλλει τὰ δαιμόνια εἰ μὴ ἐν τῷ βεελζεβοὺλ ἄρχοντι τῶν δαιμονίων.
Beelzebub
– in Greek, this reads as “Beelzeboul” – βεελζεβοὺλ

25. Jesus knew their thoughts so He said to them:
“Every kingdom that is divided against itself is destroyed, and every city or house that is divided against itself will not stand
.
εἰδὼς
δὲ τὰς ἐνθυμήσεις αὐτῶν εἶπεν αὐτοῖς· πᾶσα βασιλεία μερισθεῖσα καθ’ ἑαυτῆς ἐρημοῦται καὶ πᾶσα πόλις οἰκία μερισθεῖσα καθ’ ἑαυτῆς οὐ σταθήσεται.

26. And if Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then can his kingdom stand?
καὶ
εἰ σατανᾶς τὸν σατανᾶν ἐκβάλλει, ἐφ’ ἑαυτὸν ἐμερίσθη· πῶς οὐν σταθήσεται βασιλεία αὐτοῦ;

27. And if I cast out demons by Beelzebub, how do your sons cast them out? Therefore they shall be your judges.
καὶ
εἰ ἐγὼ ἐν βεελζεβοὺλ ἐκβάλλω τὰ δαιμόνια, οἱ υἱοὶ ὑμῶν ἐν τίνι ἐκβάλλουσιν; διὰ τοῦτο αὐτοὶ κριταὶ ἔσονται ὑμῶν.

28. But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God then the Kingdom of God has come to you.
εἰ
δὲ ἐν πνεύματι θεοῦ ἐγὼ ἐκβάλλω τὰ δαιμόνια ἄρα ἔφθασεν ἐφ’ ὑμᾶς βασιλεία τοῦ θεοῦ.
demons
– daimonia – δαιμόνια

29. Or how can anyone enter into the house of a strong man and grab hold of his goods, except he first ties up the strong man, and then he will be able to rob his house.
πῶς δύναται τις εἰσελθεῖν εἰς τὴν οἰκίαν τοῦ ἰσχυροῦ καὶ τὰ σκεύη αὐτοῦ ἁρπάσαι, ἐὰν μὴ πρῶτον δήσῃ τὸν ἰσχυρόν; καὶ τότε τὴν οἰκίαν αὐτοῦ διαρπάσει.

30. The person who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters.
μὴ ὢν μετ’ ἐμοῦ κατ’ ἐμοῦ ἐστιν, καὶ μὴ συνάγων μετ’ ἐμοῦ σκορπίζει.

31. Therefore I tell you that every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven.
Διὰ
τοῦτο λέγω ὑμῖν, πᾶσα ἁμαρτία καὶ βλασφημία ἀφεθήσεται τοῖς ἀνθρώποις δὲ τοῦ πνεύματος βλασφημία οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται.
blasphemy” – blasphemia – βλασφημία

32. And whoever shares a teaching against the Son of Man will be forgiven. However whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, neither in this lifetime nor in the one to come.
καὶ
ὃς ἐὰν εἶπη λόγον κατὰ τοῦ υἱοῦ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἀφεθήσεται αὐτῷ· ὃς δ’ ἂν εἴπῃ κατὰ τοῦ πνεύματος τοῦ ἁγίου, οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται αὐτῷ οὔτε ἐν τούτῳ τῷ αἰῶνι οὔτε ἐν τῷ μέλλοντι.

33. Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or make the tree bad and its fruit bad. For the tree is known by its fruit.
ποιήσατε τὸ δένδρον καλὸν καὶ τὸν καρπὸν αὐτοῦ καλόν, ποιήσατε τὸ δένδρον σαπρὸν καὶ τὸν καρπὸν αὐτοῦ σαπρόν, ἐκ γὰρ τοῦ καρποῦ τὸ δένδρον γινώσκεται.

34. Nest of vipers, how do you, being evil, have the power to say good things? For the mouth speaks out of the fullness of the heart.
γεννήματα
ἐχιδνῶν, πῶς δύνασθε ἀγαθὰ λαλεῖν πονηροὶ ὄντες; ἐκ γὰρ τοῦ περισσεύματος τῆς καρδίας τὸ στόμα λαλεῖ.

35. A good man brings out good things out of the good treasure of his heart, and a wicked man brings out evil things out of the evil treasure of his heart.
ἀγαθὸς ἄνθρωπος ἐκ τοῦ ἀγαθοῦ θησαυροῦ ἐκβάλλει ἀγαθά, καὶ πονηρὸς ἄνθρωπος ἐκ τοῦ πονηροῦ θησαυροῦ ἐκβάλλει πονηρά.

36. I tell you that on the day of judgement men will give an account of every careless word that they speak.
λἐγω
δὲ ὑμῖν ὅτι πᾶν ῥῆμα ἀργὸν λαλήσουσιν οἱ ἄνθρωποι ἀποδώσουσιν περὶ αὐτοῦ λόγον ἐν ἡμέρᾳ κρίσεως·

37. For from your words you will be acquitted, or from your words you will be condemned.
ἐκ
γὰρ τῶν λόγων σου δικαιωθήσῃ, καὶ ἐκ τῶν λόγων σου καταδικασθήσῃ.

38. Then certain Scribes and Pharisees answered Him in reply:
“Teacher, we wish to see a sign from You.”

Τότε
ἀπεκρίθησαν αὐτῷ τινες τῶν γραμματέων καὶ Φαρισαίων λέγοντες· διδάσκαλε, θέλομεν ἀπὸ σου σημεῖον ἰδεῖν.
sign – semeion – σημεῖον – like “semaphore” – literally “bearer of signs” – sending messages through flags, and ultimately also the root of “semantics”

39. He said to them in reply:
“An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah
.
δὲ ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν αὐτοῖς γενεὰ πονηρὰ καὶ μοιχαλὶς σημεῖον ἐπιζητεῖ, καὶ σημεῖον οὐ δοθήσεται αὐτῇ εἰ μὴ τὸ σημεῖον Ἰωνᾶ τοῦ προφήτου.

40. For as Jonah was in the belly of the whale three days and three nights, so the Son of Man will remain in the heart of the earth for three days and three nights.
ὥσπερ
γὰρ ἦν Ἰωνᾶς ἐν τῇ κοιλίᾳ τοῦ κήτους τρεῖς ἡμέρας καὶ τρεῖς νύκτας, οὕτως ἔσται υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐν τη καρδίᾳ τῆς γῆς τρεῖς ἡμέρας καὶ τρεῖς νύκτας.

41. The men of Nineveh will rise up in the judgement against this generation and condemn it, because they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and indeed, there is here someone greater than Jonah.
ἄνδρες
Νινευῖται ἀναστήσονται ἐν τῇ κρίσει μετὰ τῆς γενεᾶς ταύτης καὶ κατακρινοῦσιν αὐτήν, ὅτι μετενόησαν εἰς τὸ κήρυγμα Ἰωνᾶ, καὶ ἰδοὺ πλεῖον Ἰωνᾶ ὧδε.

42. The Queen of the South will rise up in the judgement against this generation, because she came from the ends of the earth to listen to the wisdom of Solomon, and indeed there is here someone greater than Solomon.
βασίλισσα
νότου ἐγερθήσεται ἐν τῇ κρίσει μετὰ τῆς γενεᾶς ταύτης καὶ κατακρινεῖ αὐτήν, ὅτι ἦλθεν ἐκ τῶν περάτων τῆς γῆς ἀκοῦσαι τὴν σοφίαν Σολομῶνος, καὶ ἰδοὺ πλεῖον Σολομῶνος ὧδε.

43. When an evil spirit leaves a man, it goes around desert places seeking rest, and finds none.
Ὅταν
δὲ τὸ ἀκάθαρτον πνεῦμα ἐξέλθῃ ἀπὸ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου διέρχεται δι’ ἀνύδρων τόπων ζητοῦν ἀνάπαυσιν καὶ οὐχ εὑρίσκει.

44. Then it says:
“I will return to the house I left.”
And it goes and finds him unoccupied and swept and tidied up
.
τότε
λέγει· εἰς τὸν οἶκον μου ἐπιστρέψω ὅθεν ἐξῆλθον· καὶ ἐλθὸν εὑρίσκει σχολάζοντα καὶ σεσαρωμένον καὶ κεκοσμημένον.

45. Then it goes and takes with it seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they enter and live there. So it happens that the last state of that man is worse than the first. So it will be with this evil generation.
τότε
πορεύεται καὶ παραλαμβάνει μεθ’ ἑαυτοῦ ἑπτὰ ἕτερα πνεύματα πονηρότερα ἑαυτοῦ καὶ εἰσελθόντα κατοικεῖ ἐκεῖ· καὶ γίνεται τὰ ἔσχατα τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐκείνου χείρονα τῶν πρώτων. οὕτως ἔσται καὶ τῇ γενεᾷ ταύτῃ τῇ πονηρᾷ.

46. While He was still saying these things to the crowds, indeed His mother and His brothers came and stood outside, wishing to speak with Him.
Ἔτι
αὐτοῦ λαλοῦντος τοῖς ὄχλοις ἰδοὺ μήτηρ καὶ οὶ ἀδελφοὶ αὐτοῦ εἱστήκεισαν ἔξω ζητοῦντες αὐτῷ λαλῆσαι.

47. Then someone told Him:
“Look, Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside, wishing to speak with You.”

[εἶπεν δέ τις αὐτῷ· ἰδοὺ ἡ μήτηρ σου καὶ οἱ ἀδελφοί σου ἔξω ἑστήκασιν ζητοῦντές σοι λαλῆσαι.]
This verse does not occur in a number of translations

48. He said in reply to the man who said this:
“Who is My mother and who are My brothers?

δὲ ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν τῷ λέγοντι αὐτῷ· τίς ἐστιν μήτηρ μου καὶ τίνες εἰσιν οἱ αδελφοί μου;

49. Then He stretched out His hand to His disciples and said:
“See My mother and My brothers
!
καὶ
ἐκτείνας τὴν χεῖρα αὐτοῦ ἐπὶ τοὺς μαθητὰς αὐτοῦ εἶπεν· ἰδοὺ μήτηρ μου καὶ οἱ ἀδελφοί μου.

50. For whoever does the will of My Father in Heaven is My brother and sister and mother.
ὅστις
γὰρ ἂν ποιήσῃ τὸ θέλημα τοῦ πατρός μου τοῦ ἐν οὐρανοῖς αὐτός μου ἀδελφὸς καὶ ἀδελφὴ καὶ μήτηρ ἐστίν.

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