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Luk 6:43 For a good tree bringeth not forth corrupt fruit;
KJV Verse:

Luk 6:43 For a good tree bringeth not forth corrupt fruit; neither doth a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.

Greek Verse:

Οὐ γὰρ ἔστιν δένδρον καλὸν ποιοῦν καρπὸν σαπρόν, οὐδὲ πάλιν δένδρον σαπρὸν ποιοῦν καρπὸν καλόν.

Literal Alternative:

Because never is a beautiful tree producing rotten fruit nor again a rotten tree producing beautiful fruit. (For every tree from its own fruit is known by observation. 

Hidden Meaning:

This verse is similar to Mat 7:18 but the Matthew version uses more of a variety of words, a difference indentionally hidden in translation.  Both are examples of how the Greek words the Bible translates as "evil" and "good" don't really have the same sense as the English words used. See this article on the real Greek meaning of the terms translated as "good" and "evil." The Matthew version has a clearer connection to the ideas of profit and loss. 

The word translated as "for" introduces a reason or explanation so "because" and, in questions, "why."  To prevent a run-on sentence, it can be translated as "this is why" or "this is because..." to start a new sentence.

The Greek word translated as "good" means "beautiful", "noble," or "of good quality." See this article on the real Greek meaning of the terms translated as "good" and "evil." Matthew uses the other Greek adjective translated as "good" discussed in that article. 

The word for "tree" most commonly means fruit-bearing trees. The tree was a symbol for the naturally productive assets of nature as opposed to fields which must be planted each year.

The verb "is" occurs in the Greek, but it is edited out of the English translation.

The Greek word translated as "brings forth" means of "making" or producing" something or "causing" or "rendering" as service. This verb is usually translated as "to do" in the NT though its meaning is not nearly as broad. This verb is in the form of an adjective, "producing". In the Mat 7:18 version of this verse, a verb specifically meaning "bringing forth" is used, which is why this translation is used here. This same verb is used later in Matthew and it is also translated as "bring forth", which disguises the use of two different verbs in that verse. 

The Greek word translated as "not" is the Greek negative used to deny objective facts, not opinions. It makes a negative statement of fact. Adding "really" to the "no" or "not" captures its feeling better.

The word translated as "corrupt" means "rancid", "rotten," and "worn out." Since it also means "mellow" when applied to wine, it means food that is either old or bad.  Matthew uses a different adjective here as well. However, it is translated as "bad", not "corrupt". 

The word translated as "fruit" primary meaning is "fruit", "seed," or "offspring," but its secondary meaning is "returns," specifically, "profit," as we would say "fruit of our labors."

The word translated as "corrupt" is the same as above. 

The second word for "tree" is the same as above.

The second "brings forth" is the same as above but again, it is in the form of an adjective, "producing". 

The word translated as "good" means "beautiful", "noble," or "of good quality." See this article on the real Greek meaning of the terms translated as "good" and "evil."

The word translated as "fruit" primary meaning is "fruit", "seed," or "offspring," but its secondary meaning is "returns," specifically, "profit," as we would say "fruit of our labors."

Wordplay:

As in the previous verse, "fruit" can mean profit or produce and a "tree" is a financial asset.

Vocabulary:

Οὐ (partic) "Not" is from ou which is the negative adverb for facts and statements, negating both single words and sentences. The other negative adverb, μή applies to will and thought; οὐ denies, μή rejects; οὐ is absolute, μή relative; οὐ objective, μή subjective.

γὰρ (partic) "For" comes from gar which is the introduction of a clause explaining a reason or explanation: "for", "since," and "as." In an abrupt question, it means "why" and "what."

ἔστιν (verb 3rd sg pres ind act) Untranslated is eimi, which means "to be", "to exist", "to be the case," and "is possible." (The 3rd person present indicative is "esti.") -- When the verb "to be" appears early in the sentence before the subject, the sense is more like "it is" or, in the plural, "there are." -- The verb here is the common form of "to be" in Greek. It means to have a certain characteristic or remain in a certain condition.

δένδρον  (noun sg neut nom) "Tree" is from dendron (more commonly spelled dendreon), which means "tree", "fruit-tree", "tall plants (such as rattan)" "stick," and "timber."

καλὸν (adj sg neut acc) "Good" is from kalos, which means "beautiful", "of fine quality", "noble", "honorable", "fair", "shapely", "good [of currency]", "auspicious [of sacrifices]", "excellent", "fine," and "specious [when used ironically]." As an adverb, it means "of good fortune", "well", "happily", "thoroughly", "altogether," and "finely."

ποιοῦν (part sg pres act neut nom)"Bringeth" is poieo, which means "to make", "to produce", "to create", "to bring into existence", "to bring about", "to cause", "to render", "to consider", "to prepare", "to make ready," and "to do." -- The Greek word translated as "to do" has the primary meaning of "making" or producing" something or "causing" or "rendering" as service.

καρπὸν (noun sg masc acc) "Fruit" is from karpos, which means "fruit", "the fruits of the earth", "seed", "offspring", "returns for profit," and "reward."

σαπρόν, (adj sg masc acc) "Corrupt" is from sapros, which means "rotten", "putrid", "stale", "rancid", "worn-out," and "mellow [of wine]."

οὐδὲ (partic) "Neither" is from oude , which means "but not", "neither", "nor," and "not even."

πάλιν (adv) "Again" is palin (palin), which means "back", "backward", "contradiction", "again", "once more," and "in turn."

δένδρον  (noun sg neut nom) "Tree" is from dendron (more commonly spelled dendreon), which means "tree", "fruit-tree", "tall plants (such as rattan)" "stick," and "timber."

σαπρὸν (adj sg neut nom) "Corrupt" is from sapros, which means "rotten", "putrid", "stale", "rancid", "worn-out," and "mellow [of wine]."

ποιοῦν  (part sg pres act neut nom) "Bring forth" is from poieo, which means "to make", "to produce", "to create", "to bring into existence", "to bring about", "to cause", "to render", "to consider", "to prepare", "to make ready," and "to do."

καρπὸν (noun sg masc acc) "Fruit" is from karpos, which means "fruit", "the fruits of the earth", "seed", "offspring", "returns for profit," and "reward."

καλόν. (adj sg neut acc) "Good" is from kalos, which means "beautiful", "of fine quality", "noble", "honorable", "fair", "shapely", "good [of currency]", "auspicious [of sacrifices]", "excellent", "fine," and "specious [when used ironically]." As an adverb, it means "of good fortune", "well", "happily", "thoroughly", "altogether," and "finely."

ἕκαστον [unusual](adj sg masc acc) "Every" is from hekastos, which means "each", "all and each severally," and "each by himself."

γὰρ "For" comes from gar which is the introduction of a clause explaining a reason or explanation: "for", "since," and "as." In an abrupt question, it means "why" and "what." --The word translated as "for" introduces a reason or explanation so "because" and, in questions, "why."  To prevent a run-on sentence, it can be translated as "this is why" or "this is because..." to start a new sentence.

δένδρον (noun sg neut nom) "Tree" is from dendron (more commonly spelled dendreon), which means "tree", "fruit-tree", "tall plants (such as rattan)" "stick," and "timber."

ἐκ ()"By" is ek, which means 1) [of motion] "out of", "from", "by", "away from;" 2) [of place] "beyond", "outside of", "beyond;" 3) [of succession] "after", "from;" 4) [of rest] "on", "in," 5) [of time] "since", "from", "at", "in;" 5) [of materials] "out of", "made from." -- The Greek preposition translated as "of" means "out of" or "from." In Greek, they use the genitive case instead of a preposition for the types of phrases with usually use with "of."

τοῦ ἰδίου (adj sg neut gen) "Its own" is idios, which means "one's own", "pertaining to oneself", "private", "personal", "personally attached" to one, "separate", "distinct", "strange," and "unusual." -- The word translated as "his" is a very unusual word. It is not the very common pronoun usually translated as "his," but a specific word that means "one's own", "pertaining to oneself," and "private."

καρποῦ (noun sg masc gen) "Fruit" is from karpos, which means "fruit", "the fruits of the earth", "seed", "offspring", "returns for profit," and "reward."

γινώσκεται: (verb 3rd sg pres ind mp)"Is known" is ginosko which means "to learn to know", "to know by reflection or observation," and "to perceive." -- "Be known" is a verb that means "to know", "to recognize", "make known", "to know carnally," and "to learn.

Related Verses:

Mat 7:18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit,

 

Most Recent Question

Question:
Why does Jesus never give straight answers to anyone in the gospels?
Answer:

As someone who spends some time everyday translating Jesus’s words, his answers fall into three categories that people today find difficult to understand:

  1. Entertaining, down-to-earth answers phrased to be shockingly memorable,
  2. Layered answers, with double and triple meanings, that had a meanings for his listeners by reveal new insights on each reading and to each generation,
  3. Answers to questions where we lack the context for true understanding but can be pointed in the right direction.

I could provide hundreds of examples of all three of the categories above, but let us focus on the second. A ll...

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