Mark 6:11 And whosoever shall not receive you,

KJV Verse: 

Mar 6:11 And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear you, when you depart thence, shake off the dust under your feet for a testimony against them. Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment, than for that city.

Greek Verse: 

Literal Alternative: 

And when that place not want to welcome you themselves nor do they hear of you, marching out from there, shake out the dirt, the ones below those feet of theirs for a testimony to them. 

Hidden Meaning: 

This verse has a couple of untranslated words in the KJV and the Greek sources we use today don't have the part about "Sodom and Gomorrah" in them. Neither do our more modern Bible translation. This phrase said in the right tone is meant to get a laugh out of the apostles and calm them in the face of rejection. Jesus was telling the apostles to leave it behind, yes, but also know that the ones who rejected them blew it. It is not that the apostles themselves did anything wrong. 

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

The word translated as "whosoever" 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.

There is an untranslated Greek word here meaning "if might" that indicates more of an expectation of something happening than "if" alone so "when" often works well in English.

An untranslated Greek word appears here that means "place", "position," and "topic." This is a fairly uncommon word for Christ to use.

The negative, "not," used here 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. If it wasn't done, the objective negative of fact would be used. More about the Greek negative in this article.

"Receive" is a Greek verb word, when applied to people as it does here, means "to welcome", "accept" or "to receive with hospitality". It is in a form of possibility ("might")  where the subject doing this for or by themselves, "they might welcome you themselves". However, with the negative used, the sense is "they might not want to welcome you themselves". 

The "you" here is plural, indicating all Christ's listeners.

The word "hear" means the physical sense of hearing sounds, not necessarily listening or understanding words. This verb is plural, adding a "they", the people there, rather than the place that started as the subject. 

There is no Greek word here meaning "when". It is added because the form of the verb "depart".

The words translated as "depart" is not the common word translated in the parallel verses as "depart" but a different word that has more the sense of "marching out." It is in the form of an adjective. 

The word translated as "shake off" means "to shake out" while cleaning. Its form could either be a command or a statement about what you do at that time. This is the same word used in the Matthew version but not the same as the word using in Luke. 

The word translated as "dust" means "excavated dirt". It use here by Jesus is unique. It is also a metaphor for the grave. 

The word translated as "feet" refers to human feet, birds's talons, and trampling things. Feet were the dirtiest part of the body and are still considered unclean in the Middle East.

The word translated as "for" means "into" a place, "towards" as a direction, and "up to" limits in time and measure. It means "for" in the sense of "for a purpose". 

The Greek word for "testimony" means "testimony" and "proof." 

The word translated as "against them" is the Greek word commonly translated as pronouns in English. The form is that of an indirect objects so, "to them" is the normal meaning.

For those who are going to be rejected, it is comfort. It tells us to simply put the rejection behind us. We must march on. We shake off the residue of it, symbolically leaving the evidence behind us. We shouldn't expect to be welcomed or even physically heard. For those who reject us, it comes across as sadness. Everyone has a time of trial and these people will have less to fall back upon than those who die a quick death.


καὶ (conj) "And" is from 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."

ὃς (pron sg masc nom) "Whoseover" is from hos, which means "this", "that", "he", "she", "which", "what", "who", "whosoever", "where", "for which reason," and many similar meanings.

ἂν (particle) Untranslated is ean, which is a conditional particle (derived from ei (if)and an (might)) which makes reference to a time and experience in the future that introduces but does not determine an event.

τόπος (noun sg masc nom) Untranslated is from topos (topos), which means "place", "region", "position", "part [of the body]", "district", "room," and "topic." It is also a metaphor for "opening", "occasion," and "opportunity."​ 

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. -- The negative used here 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.​

δέξηται  (verb 3rd sg aor subj mid) "Will...receive" is from dechomai, which means "welcome", "accept," and "entertain" when applied to people and "take", "accept," and "receive" when applied to things.)​

ὑμᾶς,  (pron 2nd pl acc) "You" is from humas which is the plural form of su the pronoun of the second person, "you."

μηδὲ (partic) "Nor" is from mede, which means "and not", "but not", "nor," and "not."

ἀκούσωσιν (verb 3rd pl aor subj act) "Hear" is from akouo, which means "hear of", "hear tell of", "what one actually hears", "know by hearsay", "listen to", "give ear to", "hear and understand," and "understand."

ὑμῶν, (pron 2nd pl gen) "You" is humon, the plural possessive form of su the pronoun of the second person, "you." -- The word translated as "your" is plural addressing a group of Jesus's listeners.​

ἐκπορευόμενοι (part pl pres mp masc nom) "Depart" is from ekporeuô (ekporeuomai), which means "to make to go out", "to fetch out," and "to march out."

ἐκεῖθεν (adv) "Place" is from ekeithen, which means "from that place", "thence", "from that fact," and "thenceforward."

ἐκτινάξατε (verb 2nd pl aor imperat act) "Shake" is from ektinassô (ektinasso), which means "to shake out", "to expel", "to shake off," and "to search thoroughly."

τὸν χοῦν (noun sg masc acc) "Dust" is from choos, which means "excavated soil", "dust", and "the grave". 

τὸν (article pl fem/masc/neut gen) "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. 

ὑποκάτω  [uncommon](adv/prep) "Under" is from hypokato, which means "below" and  "under".

τῶν ποδῶν (noun pl masc gen) "Feet" is from pous, which means a "foot", "a talon [of a bird]," and the concept of "to trample" or "to tred upon."

ὑμῶν (pron 2nd pl gen) "Your" is from humon, the plural possessive form of su the pronoun of the second person, "you."

εἰς (prep) "For" 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)."

μαρτύριον (noun sg neut acc) "Testimony" is from marturion (marturion), which means "testimony" and "proof."

αὐτοῖς. (adj pl masc dat) "Them" (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."

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