Luke 17:9 Doth he thank that servant because he did the things that were commanded

KJV Verse: 

Luke 17:9 Doth he thank that servant because he did the things that were commanded him? I trow not.

Greek Verse: 

Literal Alternative: 

You don't [think to] have goodwill toward the slave because he performs those things that are being assigned.

Hidden Meaning: 

This is part of  a humorous response explaining why the Apostles cannot command a tree to uproot itself.  In this analogy, the apostles and the tree are the bondsman, who place is to serve others, not command.  Here, that idea goes further: because we serve our purpose, we shouldn't expect the goodwill or grace of the Master.  This sentence begins with a negative that is completely lost in translation. This sentence is also about what the person thinks or wants, not what he does. It also could be addressed to a specific person.  The final phrase does not exist in the Greek and was added in Latin because of the way the negative at the beginning was translated. Other than that, there are only a couple of misleading translations in this short verse and a new word for Jesus.

An untranslated negative begins this sentence. It is the Greek negative of a subjective opinion. The sense is that "you don't want" to do something, not that it isn't done or don't think something that might be true. If it wasn't done or wasn't true, the objective negative of fact would be used. This word inspired the additional "I trow not" ("I suspect not") at the end of the sentence because the word used here in Latin, which was the basis of the KJV Greek, is used for a question expecting a negative answer.

The word translated as "doth he" means to "have", "possess", "bear", "keep close", "have means to do",  "to have due to one", or "keep". This is not the word translated as "do" but to have. The form could be either the third person, "he has"  or the second person, "you have". Though the second person is singular and the "you" of the the following verse is plural, the "you" works better. The KJV gets into trouble trying to aviod it.

The Greek word translated as "thank" is complicated. It means the appearance of beauty and grace. On the part of a doer, it is "kindness" and "goodwill". On the part of the receiver, it means "thankfulness" and "gratitude". Generally, it means "gratification", "delight",  with many special uses.

The noun translated as "servant" means "slave." It is translated as "servant" to update the Bible. The form is an indirect object, "to/for the servant".

The word translated as "that" introduces a statement of fact or cause.

The Greek word translated as "he did" has the primary meaning of "making" or producing" something or "causing" or "preforming" as service. It describes a productive action.  It is not as broad a word as the English "do", which covers all actions, productive or not.  The tense is not the past, but a tense that applies to the past, present, and future.

The word translated as "the things that" 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. So the sense here is "those ones" or "these things".

"Were commanded" is from a Greek verb used for the first time bu Jesus here. It  means to "appoint", "ordain", "dispose"", arrange for oneself", "classify", and, in the passive, " to be appointed". It is in the passive. Again, the tense is not the past, but a form that means at any time.

The is not Greek for the rest of this sentence. No "him". No "I trow", meaning "I suspect", and no "not", except for the "not" that began the sentence. These were all added.

him? I trow not.

Vocabulary: 

μὴ (partic) "Not" is me , which is the negative used in prohibitions and expressions of doubt meaning "not" and "no." As οὐ (ou) negates fact and statement; μή rejects, οὐ denies; μή is relative, οὐ absolute; μή subjective, οὐ objective.

ἔχει (verb 3rd sg pres ind act or verb 2nd sg pres ind mp ) "Doth he" is echo, which means "to have", "to hold", "to possess", "to keep", "to have charge of", "to have due to one", "to maintain", "to hold fast", "to bear", "to carry", "to keep close", "to keep safe," and "to have means to do."

χάριν [uncommon](noun sg fem acc) "Thank" is from charis, which means, in objective sense, "outward grace" or "favour", "beauty", in subjective sense, "grace" or "favour felt",  "kindness", "goodwill", in concrete sense, a "favour" done or returned, "boon", "gratification", "delight",  with many special uses.   --

τῷ δούλῳ (noun sg masc dat) "The servant" is doulos, which means a "slave," a "born bondsman," or "one made a slave."

ὅτι (adv/conj) "Because" 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." -

ἐποίησεν ( verb 3rd sg aor ind ) "He did" 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." --

τὰ ( article pl neut acc ) "The things 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.

διαταχθέντα; [uncommon](part pl aor pass neut acc) "Were commanded" is diatasso, which  means to "appoint", "ordain", "dispose"", arrange for oneself", "classify", and, in the passive, " to be appointed"

Sep 12 2018