Luke 10:2 The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few:

KJV Verse: 

Luke 10:2 The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest.

Greek Verse: 

Literal Alternative: 

This, on one hand, reaping? Large! These, on the other hand, workers? Few. You might be wanting then the master of the harvest that he might toss out workmen into this harvest of his. 

Hidden Meaning: 

This verse is again unusual in that it follows Matthew (9:37,  9:38) exactly. In the first part, the verbs are added to make complete sentences in the translation, but the Greek spoken form works just as well in English. The Greek of the second part has a touch of humor in it, so typical of Jesus but often filtered out in Luke. The word translated as "pray" means "be needing".  The word translated as "send out" is not the usual word translated as "send", but the word usually translated as "cast out", which Jesus use in the same light sense as we use "toss out" in English.

The "indeed" here is a particle, which. when used alone. expresses certainty, "truly" and "certainly". However, when used with the conjunction translated here as "but" take on the meaning "one one hand..." with the "on the other hand" identified by the "but" phrase.​  So, the sense here is "On one hand". 

The word translated as "the" is the Greek article, "the," which usually proceeds a noun but here it is separated by the particle above. The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this", "that", "these", "those"). See this article for more. 

"Harvest" is from a noun which means "mowing", "reaping", "harvest time", "harvest," and "crop." In John 4:35, Christ uses this term to refer to the gathering of the fruits for eternal life. Think of this word with its article as a question, "this harvest?" 

There is no "is" in the Greek. The structure is question/answer. 

The word translated as "great" means many in number, great in power or worth, and large in size.​ This is the answer, "large!" 

The Greek word translated as "but" joins phrases in an adversarial way. Since it always falls in the second position, translating it as "however" often captures its feeling better. When used in writing, it creates complex sentences, but when spoken, it makes a good pausing point so that an important or humorous word can follow.

Again, the article is separated by the particle above from the word below. 

"Laborers" is from a word that means "workman", "one who works the soil", "husbandman", and "producer."  Think of this word with its article as a question, "these workers?" 

Again, there is no "are" in the Greek. The structure is question/answer. 

The Greek word translated as "few" means "little", "small", "slight", "few," and "weak." 

The Greek word translated as "pray" is means to "lack", "miss", "stand in need of", "want",  "to be in want or need", "require", and to "beg a thing from".  It is an uncommon word for Jesus. It is not a command, as translated, but a passive verb, "you might be wanting". 

The Greek word translated as "therefore" either emphasizes the truth of something ("certainly", "really") or it simply continues an existing narrative.

The word translated as "master" is the same word that is often translated as "Lord" or "the Lord" in the NT. It also means "lord", "master of the house," and "head of the family." It is the specific terms for the master of slaves or servants, but it was a common term of respect both for those in authority and who were honored. It was the term people used to address Christ, even though he had no formal authority. Today, we would say "boss" or "chief".

"Of the harvest" is from a noun which means "mowing", "reaping", "harvest time", "harvest," and "crop."

The word translated as "that" is one of those Greek words that introduce a new phrase that offers an explanation. It can be translated as a dependent clause.

"He will send forth" is a verb that means "throw out." Depending on the context, it can mean "toss out", "turn out," or "take out." It is usually translated as "cast out" in the NT.

"Laborers" is from a word that means "workman", "one who works the soil", "husbandman", and "producer."  Think of this word with its article as a question, "these workers?" 

The word translated as "unto" means "into" a place, "towards" as a direction, and "up to" limits in time and measure.

The word translated as "his" is the Greek word commonly translated as pronouns in English, but it has a few shades of meaning our pronouns do not have. The word technically means "the same," and when used as a pronoun can mean "the true self" as opposed to appearances.

"Harvest" is from a noun which means "mowing", "reaping", "harvest time", "harvest," and "crop."

Vocabulary: 

(article sg masc nom) "Unto them that" is the Greek article, "the," which usually proceeds a noun and, without a noun, takes the meaning of "the one" or, in the plural, "the ones." Here it is separated from its noun by a conjunction. -- The word translated as "goods" is the Greek article, "the," which usually proceeds a noun and, without a noun, takes the meaning of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this", "that", "these", "those"). See this article for more. 

μὲν (partic) "Truly" is men, which is generally used to express certainty and means "indeed", "certainly", "surely," and "truly." Used with the conjunction de, as it is here, it points out the specific word being contrast after the conjunction. In English, we usually say, one one hand...on the others... See the article here for specific uses with other particles. -- The "indeed" here is a particle, which. when used alone. expresses certainty, "truly" and "certainly". However, when used with the conjunction translated here as "but" take on the meaning "one one hand..." with the "on the other hand" identified by the "but" phrase.​

θερισμὸς (noun sg masc nom) "Harvest" is from therismos, which means "mowing", "reaping", "harvest time", "harvest," and "crop."​

πολύς, (adj sg masc nom) "Many" is polus, which means "many (in number)", "great (in size or power or worth)," and "large (of space)." As an adverb, it means "far", "very much", "a great way," and "long." -- The word translated as "many" means many in number, great in power or worth, and large in size.​

οἱ (article pl masc nom) "Unto them that" is the Greek article, "the," which usually proceeds a noun and, without a noun, takes the meaning of "the one" or, in the plural, "the ones." Here it is separated from its noun by a conjunction. -- The word translated as "goods" is the Greek article, "the," which usually proceeds a noun and, without a noun, takes the meaning of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this", "that", "these", "those"). See this article for more. 

δὲ (conj/adv) "But" 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"). -- The Greek word translated as "but" joins phrases in an adversarial way. Since it always falls in the second position, translating it as "however" often captures its feeling better. When used in writing, it creates complex sentences, but when spoken, it makes a good pausing point so that an important or humorous word can follow.​

ἐργάται (noun pl masc nom) "Workman" is ergates, which means "workman", "one who works the soil", "husbandman", "hard-working", "strenuous", "one who practices an art", "practitioner", "doer," and "producer."

ὀλίγοι: (adj pl masc nom) "Small" is oligos, which means "little", "small", "slight", "few," and "weak." As an adverb it means "a little", "slightly," and "little."​

 

δεήθητε [uncommon] ((verb 2nd pl aor subj pass) "Pray" is from deomaiwhich means to "lack", "miss", "stand in need of", "want",  "to be in want or need", "require", and to "beg a thing from".  

οὖν (adv) "Therefore" is oun, which means "certainly", "in fact", "really", "in fact," "so" and "then" (continuing a narrative), and "then" and "therefore." 

τοῦ κυρίου (noun sg masc gen) "Lord" is kyrios (kurios), which means "having power", "being in authority" and "being in possession of." It also means "lord", "master of the house," and "head of the family." 

τοῦ θερισμοῦ (noun sg masc gen) "Of the harvest" is from therismos, which means "mowing", "reaping", "harvest time", "harvest," and "crop."​

ὅπως (conj) "That" is hopos, which is a conjunction that means "in such a manner as", "in order that", "in the manner in which", "how," [with negative] "there is no way that," and [in questions] "in what way."

ἐκβάλῃ (verb 3rd sg aor subj act) "He will send forth" is ekballo and means "throw out", "cast out of a place,"and "expose." Ek means "out of", "from," and "away from." Ballo is "to throw" or "to scatter." 

ἐργάτας (noun pl masc acc) "Laborers" is ergates, which means "workman", "one who works the soil", "husbandman", "hard-working", "strenuous", "one who practices an art", "practitioner", "doer," and "producer."

εἰς (prep) "Into" 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)."

τὸν θερισμὸν (noun sg masc acc) "Harvest" is from therismos, which means "mowing", "reaping", "harvest time", "harvest," and "crop."​

αὐτοῦ. (adj sg masc gen) "His" is autos, which means "the same," and the reflexive pronouns, "myself", "yourself", "himself", "herself", "itself," or the oblique case of the pronouns, "him", "her," and "it." It also means "one's true self," that is, "the soul" as opposed to the body and "of one's own accord." 

Related Verses: 

Jan 3 2018