Luke 10:31 And by chance there came down a certain priest that way:

KJV Verse: 

Luk 10:31 And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side.

Greek Verse: 

Literal Alternative: 

Again chance, however, a priest, so and so, he came done in the way, that one, and saw him. He passed by opposite. 

Hidden Meaning: 

The verse, like the previous one (Luke 10:30), uses one unique word and another word used only here and in the next verse. This verse like the previous on, again uses ways of expressing ideas that are uncommon for Jesus. These differences may have been used for humor, or it may indicate a different pathway for the recording of verses like this. 

The word translated as "by" means "down from", "down into", "against", "opposite", "separately", "at a time", "towards", "in accordance with", "concerning", "corresponding with", "during the course of a period," and "severally."

The word translated as "chance" means "chance" and it is used uniquely here,  In the database of ancient Greek it is found only one other place, appearing once in Hippocrates. 

The Greek word translated as "and" is usually translated as "but" because it joins phrases in an adversarial way. Since it always falls in the second position, translating it as "however" often captures its feeling better. 

There is no Greek word for "there" here. The "priest" is the subject of the verb and comes before it. 

The word translated as "there came down" means "go down" as we say in English that rain "comes down" not "goes down." 

The Greek noun translated as "priest" means "priest", "sacrificer," and "diviner."

The Greek word translated as "certain" in the singular means "anyone", "someone," and "anything." In the plural, it means "some", "they," and "those." When referring to a person it is a general reference as we would use the phrase "so and so". 

In some Greek manuscripts, an "in" appears here. 

The word translated as "that" is an adjective that highlights its noun as in a specific place from a word that means "there." It follows the noun, "way". 

"Way" is a word meaning "the way" or "the road" but which is used symbolically to mean "a way of doing things" or "a philosophy of life." In Acts, followers of Jesus are described as those "belonging to the way".  It has an article so "the way". 

The Greek word translated as "and" is used as the conjunction "and", but it also is used to add emphasis ("also").

"Saw" is a Greek verb that means  "to see", "to examine", "to perceive", "to behold", "to know how to do", "to see with the mind's eye," and "to know." 

The word translated as "him" 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.

The unique word translated as "pass by the opposite side is used only here and in the next verse. It is a combination of a common verb for "pass by" with a prefix meaning "opposite". 


κατὰ (prep) "Against" is kata, which, as a preposition, means "downwards", "down from", "down into", "against", "down toward", "opposite", "separately", "individually", "at a time", "towards", "in accordance with", "concerning", "corresponding with", "during the course of a period," and "severally." As an adverb, it means "according as", "just as", "in so far as", "wherefore", "like as if" and "exactly as." 

συγκυρίαν [unique](noun sg fem acc) "Chance" is sygkyriawhich means "chance". 

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"). --

ἱερεύς (noun sg masc nom) "Priest" is from hiereus, which means "priest", "sacrificer," and "diviner."

τις (pron sg masc nom) "Certain" is tis which can mean "someone", "any one", "everyone", "they [indefinite]", "many a one", "whoever", "anyone", "anything", "some sort", "some sort of", "each", "any", "the individual", "such," and so on. In a question, it can mean "who", "why," or "what."

κατέβαινεν  (verb 3rd sg imperf ind act) "There came down" is from katabaino, which means "go down", "come down from," and "dismount from." Metaphorically, it means "attain", "conform to", "condescend", "fall in value," and "arrive at the end [of a speech]."

[ἐν] (prep) Untranslated is en, which means "in", "on", "at", "by", "among", "within", "surrounded by", "in one's hands", "in one's power," and "with". -- The word translated as "in" also means "within", "with," or "among."

τῇ ὁδῷ (noun sg fem dat) "Way" is hodos, which means literally "the way" or "the road" but it also means "travel" and "journey."  It is interesting that a term joining a path with philosophy exists in many languages from the west to the east.

ἐκείνῃ, (adj sg fem dat ) "That" is ekeinos (kakeinos), which means "the person there", "that person", "that thing", "in that case", "in that way", "at that place," and "in that manner."

 καὶ (conj) "And" is kai, which is the conjunction joining phrases and clauses, "and," or "but." After words implying sameness, "as" (the same opinion as you). Used in series, joins positive with negative "Not only...but also." Also used to give emphasis, "even", "also," and "just."

ἰδὼν (part sg aor act masc nom) "Saw" is idou, which means "to behold", "to see," and "to perceive." It acts as an adverbial phrase in this form meaning "Lo! Behold!" and "See there!' It is a form of the verb eido, which means "to see."

αὐτὸν (adj sg masc acc) "Him" 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."

ἀντιπαρῆλθεν: [uncommon](verb 3rd sg aor ind act) "He passed on the other side" is  antiparerchomai, which means "pass by on the opposite side", "come up and help", "enter in place of", and "penetrate". 

Related Verses: 

Jan 27 2018