Matthew 10:35 For I have come to set a man at variance

Spoken to: 

Apostles

Context: 

Sending of Apostles, differences,

Greek : 

Matthew 10:35  ἦλθον γὰρ διχάσαι ἄνθρωπονκατὰ τοῦ πατρὸς αὐτοῦ καὶ θυγατέρα κατὰ τῆς μητρὸς αὐτῆς καὶ νύμφην κατὰ τῆς πενθερᾶς αὐτῆς, ”

Micah 7:6 (LXX 1:6) διότι υἱὸς ἀτιμάζει πατέρα θυγάτηρ ἐπαναστήσεται ἐπὶ τὴν μητέρα αὐτῆς νύμφη ἐπὶ τὴν πενθερὰν αὐτῆς

Literal Verse: 

Since I/they  show up to split a man from that father of his, not only a woman from the mother of hers but also a bride from the mother-n-law of hers.

KJV : 

Matthew 10:35 For I have come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.

Interesting and Hidden Aspects: 

As in the previous verse, this verse in Greek can be legitimately translated in two opposite ways. The "I  come" verb can also mean "they come." The "they come" better fits into the larger context. Jesus practically starts the Sending of the Apostles with "beware of men" and the most recent section with "don't fear them."

This is a quote from Micah 7:6, which is not a prophecy about the Messiah, but one about the corruption of society. Jesus changes it in a way that he usually doesn't change OT quotes to make a play on the word "sword" from the previous verse. He replaces the verbs in the original (atimazo) with a verb (dichazo) that he only uses here that means "to split in half." That play on words is lost in translation. By saying that a man and his father can be "halved, or "cut in two" Jesus is also saying they are one as is a woman and her mother.

Also funny is the idea that a mother-in-law and daughter-in-law can be divided when their traditional opposition is the thing of joke. The idea that a bride and her mother-in-law are one, or united is funny, but in a sense every man is marrying a concept of his mother. Jesus may have chosen this particular verse from the many possibilities in the OT because the last line about the mother-in-law seems in keeping with the generally light-hearted feeling of this section.  

NIV : 

Matthew 10:35  For I have come to turn “ ‘a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—

3rd Translation: 

Matthew 10:35 I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.

Wordplay: 

 This verse starts with a play on words, a "sword" cutting people apart from their family, but the punch line here is that, while a man may be attached to his father and a woman to her mother, a daughter-in-law and mother-in-law are not attached, especially when the woman is a new bride. Christ, in saying he will "cut" them apart, is making the idea of dividing people less scary. The OT Greek word that Jesus replaces is one he uses more frequently, and the two words rhyme (atimazo, dichazo).

My Takeaway: 

The truth is always different than popular opinion.

Related Verses: 

Greek Vocabulary: 

ἦλθον (1st sg aor ind act or verb 3rd pl aor ind act ) "I am come" is from erchomai, which means "to start," "to set out", "to come", "to go," and any kind of motion. It means both "to go" on a journey and "to arrive" at a place.

γὰρ (partic) "For" comes from gar which is the introduction of a clause explaining a reason or explanation: "for", "since," and "as." In an abrupt question it means "why" and "what."

διχάσαι [unique](aor inf act -- and many other forms) "To set at variances" is the Greek dichazo, which means to "divide in two" and "divide by two." This is from the noun dichas (διχάς) which means "middle" and "half."

ἄνθρωπον (noun sg masc acc ) "A man" is from 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. -

κατὰ (prep) "Against" is from kata, which 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."

τοῦ (article sg masc gen)  Untranslated is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the"), which usually precedes a noun and, without a noun, takes the meaning of "the one" or, in the plural, "the ones."

πατρὸς (noun sg masc gen) "Father" is from pater, which means "father", "grandfather", "author", "parent," and "forefathers."

αὐτοῦ (adj sg masc gen) "His" is from 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." -

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." -

θυγατέρα (noun sg fem acc) "Daughter" is the Greek, thygater, which is generally a female descendant, "maidservant", "female slave," and "villages dependent on a city."

κατὰ (prep) "Against" is from kata, which 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."

τῆς (article sg fem gen)  Untranslated is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the"), which usually precedes a noun and, without a noun, takes the meaning of "the one" or, in the plural, "the ones." -- untranslated "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article, which usually precedes 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.

ητρὸς (noun sg fem gen ) "Mother" is from mêtêr (meter), which means "mother", "grandmother", "mother hen", "source," and "origin."

αὐτῆς (adj sg fem gen) "Her" is from 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." -

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." -

νύμφην (noun sg fem acc) "Daughter-in-law" is from nymphe, which means "young wife", "bride", "marriageable maiden", "daughter-in-law", "young girl," the goddess of springs, Nymph or goddess of lower rank, "doll", "puppet", "opening rosebud," and "clitoris."

κατὰ (prep) "Against" is from kata, which 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."

τῆς (article sg fem gen)  Untranslated is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the"), which usually precedes a noun and, without a noun, takes the meaning of "the one" or, in the plural, "the ones." -- untranslated "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article, which usually precedes 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.

πενθερᾶς (noun sg fem gen) ​"Mother-in-law" is from penthera, which means "mother-in-law."

αὐτῆς, ” (adj sg fem gen) ​ "Her" is from 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." -

KJV Analysis: 

For -- The word translated as "for" can be treated as supporting a dependent clause, or, in written English, as "since" to start a new sentence.

I -- This is from the first-person, singular form of the verb.

have -- (WT) This helping verb "have" indicates that the verb is the past tense. However, the form of the word is something that happens as some point in time, past, present, or future.

come -- The word translated as "I am come" primarily means "to start out." It indicates movement, especially its beginning, without indicating a direction toward or away from anything, so it works either as "come" or "go," but it is more like our phrase "to underway" or "to show up". It is in a form that could mean "I have come" but it could also mean "they have come". The context doesn't really tell us which version is correct.

to  -- This "to" is added because the infinitive form of the verb requires a "to" in English.

set -- (WW) "Set" is an English verb from the phrase "set at variance" used to translate the Greek verb that means "to halve." "to split in the middle," or "to divide by two."

a -- There is no indefinite article in Greek, but when a word doesn't have a definite article, the indefinite article can be added in English translation.

man -- The Greek word for "a man" in the singular means "person" and "humanity" and "people" and "peoples" in the plural.

at variance -- "At variance" is English preposition phrase used to translate the Greek verb that means "to halve." "to split in the middle," or "to divide by two."

against -- "Against" throughout this verse is a Greek word that primarily means "downwards," but in various usages means "throughout", "according to", "along", "against," and "toward." It is often translated in the KJV as "according to" and "after." It has this sense of downward motion and can mean "descended from" or "divided from." It is often used in compound Greek words.

his -- The word translated as "his" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.  The word means "the same" when used as an adjective. In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there." This pronoun follows the noun so "of his."

untranslated "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article, which usually precedes 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. 

father, -- "Father" is the common word that Christ uses to address his own father, though it can mean any male ancestor.

and -- 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, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

the -- (IW) There is nothing that can be translated as "the" in the Greek source.

daughter -- The word translated as "daughter" means any female descendant and was used to address female servants and slaves. It isn't introduced by an article ("the") so "a daughter."

against -- "Against" throughout this verse is a Greek word that primarily means "downwards," but in various usages means "throughout", "according to", "along", "against," and "toward."

her -- The word translated as "her" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.  The word means "the same" when used as an adjective. In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there." This pronoun follows the noun so "of hers."

untranslated "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article, which usually precedes 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. 

mother, -- "Mother" is the common Greek word for "mother" and "grandmothers," but it also means "the source" of something.

and -- 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, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

the  -- (IW) There is nothing that can be translated as "the" in the Greek source.

daughter in law -- "Daughter-in-law" is from the Greek word meaning a young wife, especially as a bride. It also has a number of related meanings including "daughter-in-law."

her -- The word translated as "her" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.  The word means "the same" when used as an adjective. In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there." This pronoun follows the noun so "of hers."

untranslated "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article, which usually precedes 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. 

mother in law. -- The word "mother-in-law" means "mother-in-law" as the female form of the word for "father-in-law."

KJV Translation Issues: 

7
  • WT - Wrong Tense - The verb "have" seems to indicate the past tense, but the tense is something happening at a point in time past, present, or future.
  • WW - Wrong Word -- The word translated as "set at variance" means "to divide in two."
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" is not shown in the English translation.
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "the" doesn't exist in the source.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" is not shown in the English translation.
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "the" doesn't exist in the source.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" is not shown in the English translation.

NIV Analysis: 

For -- The word translated as "for" can be treated as supporting a dependent clause, or, in written English, as "since" to start a new sentence.

I -- This is from the first-person, singular form of the verb.

have -- (WT) This helping verb "have" indicates that the verb is the past tense. However, the form of the word is something that happens as some point in time, past, present, or future.

come -- The word translated as "I am come" primarily means "to start out." It indicates movement, especially its beginning, without indicating a direction toward or away from anything, so it works either as "come" or "go," but it is more like our phrase "to underway" or "to show up". It is in a form that could mean "I have come" but it could also mean "they have come". The context doesn't really tell us which version is correct.

to  -- This "to" is added because the infinitive form of the verb requires a "to" in English.

turn -- (WW) "Turn" is the Greek verb that means "to halve." "to split in the middle," or "to divide by two."

a -- There is no indefinite article in Greek, but when a word doesn't have a definite article, the indefinite article can be added in English translation.

man -- The Greek word for "a man" in the singular means "person" and "humanity" and "people" and "peoples" in the plural.

against -- "Against" throughout this verse is a Greek word that primarily means "downwards," but in various usages means "throughout", "according to", "along", "against," and "toward." It is often translated in the KJV as "according to" and "after." It has this sense of downward motion and can mean "descended from" or "divided from." It is often used in compound Greek words.

his -- The word translated as "his" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.  The word means "the same" when used as an adjective. In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there." This pronoun follows the noun so "of his."

untranslated "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article, which usually precedes 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. 

father, -- "Father" is the common word that Christ uses to address his own father, though it can mean any male ancestor.

and -- 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, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

a -- There is no indefinite article in Greek, but when a word doesn't have a definite article, the indefinite article can be added in English translation.

daughter -- The word translated as "daughter" means any female descendant and was used to address female servants and slaves. It isn't introduced by an article ("the") so "a daughter."

against -- "Against" throughout this verse is a Greek word that primarily means "downwards," but in various usages means "throughout", "according to", "along", "against," and "toward."

her -- The word translated as "her" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.  The word means "the same" when used as an adjective. In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there." This pronoun follows the noun so "of hers."

untranslated "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article, which usually precedes 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. 

mother, -- "Mother" is the common Greek word for "mother" and "grandmothers," but it also means "the source" of something.

and -- 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, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

a -- There is no indefinite article in Greek, but when a word doesn't have a definite article, the indefinite article can be added in English translation.

daughter in law -- "Daughter-in-law" is from the Greek word meaning a young wife, especially as a bride. It also has a number of related meanings including "daughter-in-law."

her -- The word translated as "her" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.  The word means "the same" when used as an adjective. In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there." This pronoun follows the noun so "of hers."

untranslated "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article, which usually precedes 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. 

mother in law. -- The word "mother-in-law" means "mother-in-law" as the female form of the word for "father-in-law."

NIV Translation Issues: 

5
  • WT - Wrong Tense - The verb "have" seems to indicate the past tense, but the tense is something happening at a point in time past, present, or future.
  • WW - Wrong Word -- The word translated as "turn" means "to divide in two."
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" is not shown in the English translation.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" is not shown in the English translation.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" is not shown in the English translation.

3rd Analysis: 

untranslated "for"-- (MW) The untranslated word "for" can be treated as supporting a dependent clause, or, in written English, as "since" to start a new sentence.

I -- This is from the first-person, singular form of the verb.

have -- (WT) This helping verb "have" indicates that the verb is the past tense. However, the form of the word is something that happens as some point in time, past, present, or future.

come -- The word translated as "I am come" primarily means "to start out." It indicates movement, especially its beginning, without indicating a direction toward or away from anything, so it works either as "come" or "go," but it is more like our phrase "to underway" or "to show up". It is in a form that could mean "I have come" but it could also mean "they have come". The context doesn't really tell us which version is correct.

to  -- This "to" is added because the infinitive form of the verb requires a "to" in English.

set-- (WW) "Set" is the Greek verb that means "to halve." "to split in the middle," or "to divide by two."

a -- There is no indefinite article in Greek, but when a word doesn't have a definite article, the indefinite article can be added in English translation.

man -- The Greek word for "a man" in the singular means "person" and "humanity" and "people" and "peoples" in the plural.

against -- "Against" throughout this verse is a Greek word that primarily means "downwards," but in various usages means "throughout", "according to", "along", "against," and "toward." It is often translated in the KJV as "according to" and "after." It has this sense of downward motion and can mean "descended from" or "divided from." It is often used in compound Greek words.

his -- The word translated as "his" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.  The word means "the same" when used as an adjective. In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there." This pronoun follows the noun so "of his."

untranslated "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article, which usually precedes 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. 

father, -- "Father" is the common word that Christ uses to address his own father, though it can mean any male ancestor.

and -- 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, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

a -- There is no indefinite article in Greek, but when a word doesn't have a definite article, the indefinite article can be added in English translation.

daughter -- The word translated as "daughter" means any female descendant and was used to address female servants and slaves. It isn't introduced by an article ("the") so "a daughter."

against -- "Against" throughout this verse is a Greek word that primarily means "downwards," but in various usages means "throughout", "according to", "along", "against," and "toward."

her -- The word translated as "her" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.  The word means "the same" when used as an adjective. In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there." This pronoun follows the noun so "of hers."

untranslated "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article, which usually precedes 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. 

mother, -- "Mother" is the common Greek word for "mother" and "grandmothers," but it also means "the source" of something.

and -- 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, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

a -- There is no indefinite article in Greek, but when a word doesn't have a definite article, the indefinite article can be added in English translation.

daughter in law -- "Daughter-in-law" is from the Greek word meaning a young wife, especially as a bride. It also has a number of related meanings including "daughter-in-law."

her -- The word translated as "her" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.  The word means "the same" when used as an adjective. In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there." This pronoun follows the noun so "of hers."

untranslated "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article, which usually precedes 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. 

mother in law. -- The word "mother-in-law" means "mother-in-law" as the female form of the word for "father-in-law."

3rd Issue Count: 

6
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "for" is not shown in the English translation.
  • WT - Wrong Tense - The verb "have" seems to indicate the past tense, but the tense is something happening at a point in time past, present, or future.
  • WW - Wrong Word -- The word translated as "turn" means "to divide in two."
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" is not shown in the English translation.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" is not shown in the English translation.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" is not shown in the English translation.

The Spoken Version: 

“The Romans shouldn’t be a problem,” suggested Ugly Jake, “All they want is peace.”
“A Roman peace,” noted Flat Nose.
“And you aren’t starting a rebelling,” noted Johnny Boyh, “but spreading peace on earth.”
“You all might not want to get accustomed to the idea,” said the Master with a smile, “that I or the Romans have shown up to spread out a peace on the earth.”
“You aren’t? They aren’t?” responded a half dozen of his students at once.
“No,” he said light-heartedly, “Neither they nor I have shown up to spread a peace but a sword.”
“You! A sword?” responded a half dozen of his students at once.
“Sure, the Roman peace comes at the point of a sword, but yours?” asked Flat Nose.
“That is just the kind of thing that Roman’s don’t want to hear,” noted Ben Simon to the Greek.
“Why a sword?” asked Smiley. “How are you like the Romans?”
“Since they and I have shown up to cut apart,” said the Master.
“Cut apart?” several students echoed in surprise.
“Cut apart what? Who?” asked Flat Nose.
“A man from the father of his,” the Master said  seeming to address Scribbler. “And not only a woman from the mother of hers, but also a bride from...”
The Master pause and smiled, then he finished, “that mother-in-law of hers.”
Everyone laughed at the idea that daughter-in-laws and mother-in-laws need to be cut apart when they are usually at odds with each other.  
“I see,” said Brother James, “Both you and the Romans are changing ways of the young people, creating a split between the generations, separating traditional ways of parents from the new ways being adopted by their children.”
Everyone agreed with this insight. The Master  just smiled.
“But the power of the Distinguished comes from supporting the traditional ways, or claiming to,” noted Phillip. “They see you as more of a threat to the traditional way that they see Rome.”
“Our traditions have always survived the foreigners, their conquests,  and their gods,” noted Flat Nose. “But it is luminaries that create new traditions.”
“Wait, I know those words,” responded Wine Bag. “They are mostly from the luminary,Micah! But he doesn’t say ‘cut apart.’ He said ‘dishonor!’”
“But both the Master and the Romans insist on honoring one’s parents,” noted Phillip.

evidence: 

140.00

Front Page Date: 

Sep 19 2020