Luke 18:7 And shall not God avenge his own elect,

KJV Verse: 

Luke 18:7 And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?

Greek Verse: 

Literal Alternative: 

The, however, Divine never might perform this vengeance for those chosen of his during these crying out to him day and night(?) And so, he perseveres patiently over them. 

Hidden Meaning: 

This is where the Greek lack of an interrogatory verb form confuses the meaning. As a statement, this verse says one thing. As an ironic question, which is likely from the context, it means the opposite. The "shall" in the KJV is misleading. This verse does not say that God will give satisfaction. It specifically says that he might, that is, that there is a possibility. It is this "might" that makes this look more like a question than a statement.

The Greek word translated as "and" means "but", "however", and "on the other hand". Since it always falls in the second position, translating it as "however" often captures its feeling better.  Changing it to "and" is a way of making something seem more agreeable than it really is.

The  "shall" is from the form of the verb, but the verb here is no "avenge". It is the Greek word translated usually as "to do", which has the primary meaning of "making" or producing" something or "causing" or "performing" as service. It is not in the future tense, but the tense of possibility, "might perform".

The "not" here is both of the Greek negatives used together. Greek has two negatives, one objective, one subjective. The use of both together is more extreme, like saying "you cannot really think." "Never" is a shorter way of saying this.

The word translated as "God" means "God" and "deity." It is introduced with an article, so "the God" or "the Divine".

"Avenge" is not the Greek verb we have seen earlier in this story, but the noun. It means "vengeance" and, with the verb used, "to give satisfaction." It is what God might perform here. It is preceded by an article, "the vengeance" or "this vengeance."

The word translated as "his own" is the Greek word commonly translated as pronouns in English.  It is usually translated only as "his". There is another more reflexive pronoun that is better translated as "his own". This is a bit of exaggeration added by the KJV translators. 

"Elect" is translated from a Greek adjective that means "picked out", "select", "choice," and "pure."  Elsewhere, it is translated as "chosen".  It is introduced with an article, so "the chosen" or "the selected".

"Which cry" is from a verb that means "to cry out" or "the shout out". It is used by Jesus uniquely in this verse. It is in the form of an adjective, "crying out" introduced by an article, "those crying out".  However, it is in a possessive form, which, when used with time (day and night) has the sense of "during", so the sense is "during these crying out unto him day and night".

The Greek word translated as "day" also means "time," in general, and refers specifically to the "daytime."

The Greek word translated as "and" is used as the conjunction "and", but it also is used to add emphasis ("also"). In a series, is best translated as "not only...but also." After words implying sameness "as".

"Night" is the Greek word that means "night", "midnight", and is a metaphor for darkness.

The word translated as "unto him" is the Greek word commonly translated as pronouns in English in the form of an indirect object "to him".  

The Greek word translated as "those" is used as the conjunction "and", but it also is used to add emphasis ("also"). It can also mean "and so", which is the sense here.

"He bear long" is from a Greek verb that "to be long-suffering", "to persevere," and "to bear patiently."  The form is present and active.

The word translated as "with" means "on", "over", "upon", "against", "before", "after", "during", "by" or "on." The sense here is "over" and in watching over.

The word translated as "them" is the Greek word commonly translated as pronouns in English. 

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. 

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").

θεὸς (noun sg masc nom) "God" is theos, which means "God," the Deity." --

οὐ μὴ (partic) "No" is ou me, the two forms of Greek negative used together. Ou is the negative adverb for facts and statements, negating both single words and sentences. Mê (me) 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.

ποιήσῃ (verb 3rd sg aor subj act ) Untranslated is poieo, which means "to make", "to produce", "to create", "to bring into existence", "to bring about", "to cause", "to perform", "to render", "to consider", "to prepare", "to make ready," and "to do."

τὴν (article sg fem acc ) ἐκδίκησιν  [uncommon]( noun sg fem acc ) "Avenge" is ekdikēsis, which means  "avenging", "vengence", and "satisfaction"as in "give satisfaction".

τῶν ἐκλεκτῶν (adj pl masc acc) "Elect" is eklektos, which means "picked out", "select", "choice," and "pure." 

αὐτοῦ (adj sg masc gen) "His" (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." In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there."

τῶν  (article pl masc gen) "Which" 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. 

βοώντων [unique](part pl pres act masc gen) "Cry" is from boao, which means to "cry aloud", "shout", "roar", and similar ideas. 

αὐτῷ (adj sg masc dat) "Unto 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." In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there."

ἡμέρας ( noun sg fem gen ) "Day" is hemera, which, as a noun, means "day" "a state or time of life", "a time (poetic)", "day break" and "day time." It is also and also has a second meaning, of "quiet", "tame (animals)", "cultivated (crops)," and "civilized (people)."

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."

νυκτός, ( noun sg fem gen) "Night" is from nyx, which means "night", "midnight", and is a metaphor for darkness.

καὶ (conj/adv) "Though" 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."

μακροθυμεῖ ( verb 3rd sg pres ind act ) "He bear long" is from makrothymeo, which means "to be long-suffering", "to persevere," "to be slow (to help)," and "to bear patiently."

ἐπ᾽ (prep) "With" is epi, which means "on", "over",  "upon", "at", "by", "before", "across," "after" in position, "during", and "against."

αὐτοῖς; (adj pl masc dat) "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." In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there."

Related Verses: 

Oct 11 2018