Luke 13:4 Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell,

KJV Verse: 

Luke 13:4 Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem?

Greek Verse: 

Literal Alternative: 

Or those ten and eight upon whom it fell, that tower in the Siloam. Do you imagine that the same debtors born from all the men the ones colonizing Jerusalem." 

Hidden Meaning: 

A key word in this verse is changed to make it look more like the words used in Luke 13:2. These two verses shed some light on the way the Jesus used the Greek word translated as "sinner". See this article on sin for more. 

"Or" is translated from a Greek word that means primary "or" but serves as "than" in a comparison.

The word translated as "those" is an adjective that highlights its noun as in a specific place from a word that means "there."

"Eighteen" is from the Greek words "ten eight". 

The word translated as "upon" means "against", "before", "during", "by" or "on."

The word translated as "whom" is a demonstrative pronoun ("this" "that"), but it often acts as a pronoun ("the one that), especially a connective pronoun ("the one that") introducing a dependent clause.

"The tower" is from a noun that means "tower," and "tower of defense." It is introduced by the article "the". 

The word translated as "in" also means "within", "with," or "among."

"Siloam" is from the Greek spelling of the Hebrew word meaning "sent". It is introduced by an article "the". 

"Fall" is translated from a Greek word that means "to fall" and "to fall down." It is the root word for dozens of Greek terms involving moving from a higher state to a lower one. Like our word "to fall" it has a number of special meanings including "to fall into a given class", "to prostrate", "to fall from power", "to perish," and so on.

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

"Slew" is translated from a Greek word that means "destroy" more than just "kill" because the base word means "slay." The Greek source has the sense of "kill off," that is, destroy in a more thorough way.

The word translated as "them" 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 means "the same" when used as an adjective, and when used as a pronoun can mean "the true self" as opposed to appearances.

The word translated as "think" doesn't mean think as much as it means "expect" or "imagine." This looks is the same word in the same form as began Luke 13:2. This looks like the beginning of a new sentence. 

The Greek source of "that" is a word that means "that" or "because." 

The word translated as "they" is the Greek word commonly translated as pronouns in English.  The word means "the same" when used as an adjective. Here, it is used as an adjective for the word translated as "sinners". 

The word for "sinners" is a form of the word for "debt". This is not the word translated as "sinners" in Luke 13:2. It means someone who owes something, that is, someone who was under a bond. In Jesus's era, a person under a bond was almost a slave until the debt was paid. In equating a "mistake maker" with a "debtor", we get a clearer idea of what the word that Jesus used that is translated as "sin" really means. 

The word translated as "were" means "to become," and "turn into", that is, to enter into a new state. In Greek, especially as used by Jesus, it is the opposite of "to be" which is existence in the current state. The sense is "came into being".  This verb doesn't equate things.  This was the same verb use in Luke 13:2.  When referring to people, it means "to be born". 

The Greek preposition translated "above," primarily means "besides" and "beyond." It also has a number of specialized meanings. With the verb above, it means "compared with" or "born from". 

The word translated as "dwell" is a verb which means "to settle in", "colonize", "to administer," and "govern." It is not a common term, used before only in Matthew to describe the seven spirits moving into a person's mind. The sense is not that over the natural inhabitants but invaders. It is in the form of an adjective, "colonizing" used as a noun referring to people, "to ones colonizing". 

There is no "in". 

The word "Jerusalem" denotes the city or its inhabitants. Two different forms of this word appear in the NT. This version is used most heavily in Luke, mostly in his narration, but a few times in Christ's words. It seems to be the more formally Greek version of the name. The sense is that the people described are settling in or colonizing the city, taking it over from others there. 

 

 

 

 

 

Vocabulary: 

 (conj/adv) "Or" is which is a particle meaning "either", "or," or "than." 

ἐκεῖνοι (adj pl masc nom) "Those" 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."

οἱ δέκα (numeral) "Teen" is from deka, which means the number ten.

ὀκτὼ [uncommon] (numeral) "Eight" is from okto, which means the number "eight". 

 ἐφ᾽ (prep) "Upon" is epi, which means "on", "upon", "at", "by", "before", "across," "during", and "against." 

οὓς (pron pl masc acc) "Whom" is hos, which means "this", "that", "he", "she", "which", "what", "who", "whosoever", "where", "for which reason," and many similar meanings.

ἔπεσεν (verb 3rd sg aor ind act) "Fell" is the verb pipto, which means "to fall", "to fall down", "to be cast down," "fall upon", "intersect (geometry)", "meet", "pass through", "fall violently upon", "attack", "fall in battle", "sink{in water)", "fall short i.e. fail", " fall out of", "lose a thing", "escape from", "fall asleep", "to be accessible to perception", "to fall (between her feet, i.e. to be born)", "to let fall[dice)", "turn out," and "fall under (belong to a class)."

 πύργος [uncommon] (noun sg masc nom) "Tower" is from pyrgos, which means "tower", "tower of defense", "movable tower (for storming towns," and "a dice cup."

ἐν (prep) "In" is en, which means "in", "on", "at", "by", "among", "within", "surrounded by", "in one's hands", "in one's power," and "with". --

τῷ Σιλωὰμ (noun sg masc dat) "Siloam" is from Siloam, which is not a Greek word, but a Hebrew word שִׁלֹחַ which means "sent."

 καὶ (conj/adv) "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." 

ἀπέκτεινεν (verb 3rd sg imperf ind act ) "Slew" is apokteino, which means "to kill," and "to slay." It combines the word for "to slay" (kteino) with the proposition, apo, indicating separation, meaning "from" or "away from."but it is a stronger form than the normal verb kteino. It is more like our "destroy." It is in the form of a present participle, "destroying" acting as a noun ("those destroying"). 

αὐτούς, (adj pl masc acc) "Them" 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."

δοκεῖτε (verb 2nd pl pres ind act) "Think ye" is dokeo, which means "expect", "suppose", "imagine", "have an opinion", "seem", "seem good," and "to be reputed." 

ὅτι (adv/conj) "That" is hoti, which introduces a statement of fact "with regard to the fact that", "seeing that," and acts as a causal adverb meaning "for what", "because", "since," and "wherefore." --

αὐτοὶ (adj pl masc nom) "They" 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." --

ὀφειλέται (noun pl masc nom) "Debtors" is opheiletes, which means "a debtor", "a person who owes a debt" or "one who is under a bond."

ἐγένοντο (verb 3rd pl aor ind mid) "Were" is ginomai, which means "to become", "to come into being", "to be produced," and "to be." It means changing into a new state of being. It is the complementary opposite of the verb "to be" (eimi)which indicates existence in the same state.

παρὰ (prep) "Above" is para, which means "beside", "from the side of", "from beside,", "from", "issuing from", "near", "by", "with", "along", "past", "beyond", "parallel (geometry)", "like (metaphor)", "a parody of (metaphor)", "precisely at the moment of (time)," and "throughout (time)." --

πάντας (adj pl masc acc) "All" is pas, which means "all", "the whole", "every", "anyone", "all kinds," and "anything." In the adverbial form, it means "every way", "on every side", "in every way," and "altogether." -- The word translated as "all" is the Greek adjective meaning "all", "the whole", "every," and similar ideas. When it is used as a noun, we would say "everything." As an adverb, it means "in every way", "on every side," and "altogether."

τοὺς ἀνθρώπους (noun pl masc acc) "Men" is anthropos, which is "man," and, in plural, "mankind." It also means "humanity" and that which is human and opposed to that which is animal or inanimate. -- The Greek word for "man" also means "person" and "humanity" in the singular. In the plural, as it is here, it means "people" and "peoples".

τοὺς κατοικοῦντας [uncommon] (part pl pres act masc acc) "Dwell" is katoikeô, which means "to settle in", "colonize", "to administer," and "govern." -- 

Ἰερουσαλήμ;  "Jerusalem" is from Ierousalēmwhich is a form of word that denotes the city or its inhabitants. Two different forms, this form and Hierosolymain the NT. this is the first use of this form.  

Related Verses: 

May 17 2018