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Luke 15:17 And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants
KJV Verse:

Luke 15:17 And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father's have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!

Greek Verse:

ΛΟΥΚΑΝ ​15:17 εἰς ἑαυτὸν δὲ ἐλθὼν ἔφη Πόσοι μίσθιοι τοῦ πατρός μου περισσεύονται ἄρτων, ἐγὼ δὲ λιμῷ ὧδε ἀπόλλυμαι:

Literal Alternative:

In regards to himself, however, starting out, he said, "How many hired laborers of that father of mine have an excess of bread? I myself, however? Through hunger here I destroy myself. 

Hidden Meaning:

Though I like the phrase "came to himself", the Greek probably means something else. The last part of the verse carries the important idea that the son is destroying himself. An important word is left untranslated at the end that may clarify the beginning. 

The Greek word translated as "and" means "but", "however", and "on the other hand". Since it always falls in the second position, translating it as "however" often captures its feeling better. 

There is no "when" here. It is added so that the KJV translators can make the following verb active, which it isn't. 

The word translated as "he came" primarily means "to start out" but Jesus usually uses it to mean "come" but not always. The form is not an active verb, but an adjective, "starting out" or "coming". The verb indicates movement, especially its beginning, without indicating a direction toward or away from anything, so it works either as "come" or "go," but it is more like our phrase "being underway." Our English word "show up" captures both the "start" and "come" ideas.  Here, however, the primary meaning of "start" may word better. The English phrase, "coming to yourself" seems unlikely in Greek.

The phrase "to himself" begins the verse, coming before the "and", which works much better as "however" here. 

The word translated as "to" means "into" a place, "towards" as a direction, and "up to" limits in time and measure. It also means "in regard to (to express relation)" and "for (of purpose or object)" which are the most likely meanings here. 

 "Himself" is a from a special reflexive pronoun that means "himself", "herself," and so on.

"He said" is from the Greek verb that means "to say" and "to speak" also. However, it has less a sense of teaching and more a sense of addressing and proclaiming.

The adjective translated as "how many"  means "of what quantity," [in distance] "how far." [of number] how far," [of time] "how long," [of value] "how much", "how great", "how many," and "how much."

"Hired servants" is an uncommon noun used only in this story. It means "salaried", "hired", "hired laborer", "servant", and "mercenary".

"Of my" is the first-person possessive singular pronoun. 

"Father" is the common word that Christ uses to address his own Father, though it can mean any male ancestor. When referring to others, Christ uses it to refer to their ancestors, that is, "forefathers."

The verb translated as "have enough and spare" means "shall exceed", "to go beyond" or "to surpass." It is in a form where the subject acts on or for itself.  Here "have an excess" works better because of the form of the following word. 

The word translated as "bread" means "small loaf or cake of bread".  The form is possessive, "of bread"

The Greek word translated as "and" means "but", "however", and "on the other hand". Since it always falls in the second position, translating it as "however" often captures its feeling better. 

The pronoun "I" is used here. Since, as the subject of the sentence, it is part of the verb, its explicit use accentuates who is speaking "I." Saying "I myself" captures this feeling in English.

The word translated as "perish" means to destroy or demolish. The form, however, is someone acting on themselves. 

 "With hunger" is the Greek word for "hunger", and "famine".  The "with" comes from its form, which makes it a cause. 

An untranslated word follows "hunger" that means in manner, "in this way," referring to manner, or "here," referring to place. "Here" goes back to the beginning of the sentence referring to his starting out. 

Vocabulary:

εἰς (prep) "To" is eis, which means "into (of place)," "up to (of time)", "until (of time)", "as much as (of measure or limit)", "as far as (of measure or limit)", "towards (to express relation)", "in regard to (to express relation)", "of an end or limit," and "for (of purpose or object)."

ἑαυτὸν (adj sg masc acc) "Himself" is heautou, is a reflexive pronoun that means "himself", "herself", "itself" "themselves," and "ourselves." It is an alternative to autos. --

δὲ (conj/adv) "And" is de which means "but" and "on the other hand." It is the particle that joins sentences in an adversarial way but can also be a weak connective ("and") and explanation of cause ("so") and a condition ("if"). 

ἐλθὼν (part sg aor act masc nom) "He came" is erchomai, which means "to start," "to set out", "to come", "to go," and any kind of motion. It means both "to go" on a journey and "to arrive" at a place.

ἔφη (verb 3rd sg imperf ind act) "He said" is eipon, which means "to speak", "to say", "to recite", "to address", "to mention", "to name", "to proclaim", "to plead", "to promise," and "to offer."

Πόσοι (adj pl masc nom) "How many" is from posos, which means "of what quantity," [in distance] "how far." [of number] how far," [of time] "how long," [of value] "how much", "how great", "how many," and "how much." 

μίσθιοι [uncommon](adj pl masc nom) "Hired servants" is misthios, which means "salaried", "hired", "hired laborer", "servant", and "mercenary".

τοῦ πατρός (noun sg masc gen) "The Father" is pater, which means "father", "grandfather", "author", "parent," and "forefathers." 

μου (pro sg masc gen) "My" is mou, which mean "my," or "mine." 

περισσεύονται (verb 3rd pl pres ind mp) "Have enough and spare" is perisseuo which means "to be over and above", "to go beyond", "to abound in", "to be superior," and, in a negative sense, "to be superfluous."

ἄρτων, (noun pl masc gen) "Bread" is artos, which means specifically a "cake of whole wheat bread," and generally "loaf," and "bread."

ἐγὼ (pron 1st sg masc nom) "I" is ego, which is the first-person singular pronoun meaning "I". It also means "I at least", "for my part", "indeed," and for myself. 

δὲ (conj/adv) "And" is de which means "but" and "on the other hand." It is the particle that joins sentences in an adversarial way but can also be a weak connective ("and") and explanation of cause ("so") and a condition ("if"). 

λιμῷ (noun sg masc/fem dat) "With hunger" is from limos, which means "hunger", "famine," and "a hungry wrench." 

ὧδε (adv) Untranslated is hode, the demonstrative adverb that means in manner, "in this wise," "thus," "so very", "so exceedingly," of Place, "hither," and "here." =

ἀπόλλυμαι: (verb 1st sg pres ind mp) "Perish" is apollymi, which means "to demolish", "to lay waste", "to lose", "to perish", "to die", "to cease to exist," and "to be undone." 

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