Matthew 22:37 You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart,

KJV Verse: 

Mat 22:37 Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.

Greek Verse: 

Literal Alternative: 

Embrace your master, the God, within your entire heart, not only your consciousness, but also your purpose.

Hidden Meaning: 

this is an elegant phrase in Greek, with all of the words chosen so that each of the three repeated phrase have exactly the same form. The pattern of three repeated phrases is common for Christ, but it is common generally in oratory. However, several things are hidden in the Greek that do no come out in English. Two of the three key words have are so interesting they already have their own articles explaining their meaning in more detail.

The Greek word translated as "love" means "to be fond of", "to greet with affection," and "to be contended with." This love is more associated with affection than passion. See this article on love for more information.

The word translated as "lord" means "having power" and "being in authority"

The word translated as "God" means "God" and "diety." It is introduced with an article, so "the God." Christ often uses it this way perhaps to indicate the one God as opposed to the pagan gods.

The word translated as "with" in each of the three phrases means"in", "within", "with," or "among."

The word translated as "whole" in each of the three phrases means "whole", "entire," and "complete."

"Heart" is from the Greek word that means "heart" both the physical organ and as the seat of emotions, which we discuss in a larger Greek context in this article here. However, this phrase can be read as defining the "heart" and both the "soul" and "the mind".

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, as it is here, is often best translated as "not only...but also."

The word translated here as "soul" is a common word in Greek meaning "life", "soul", "consciousness," and "a sense of self." Christ uses it to mean primary "spirit" or "mind." this is especially clear here where "mind" is contrasted with "body". However, this also has the sense of contrasting the conscious mind (and memory) with the unconscious brain. This Greek word is our source of the English word "psyche." Read more about its meaning in this article.

"Mind" is from a word Christ rarely uses. It means "thought", "intention", "purpose,"and "meaning."

Vocabulary: 

Ἀγαπήσεις (verb 2nd sg aor subj act) "Love" is from agapao, which means "to be fond of", "to greet with affection", "to persuade", "to caress", "to prize", "to desire", "to be pleased with," and "to be contended with." "Agape" takes its modern meaning of "brotherly love" from the English translations of the New Testament.

Κύριον (noun sg masc acc) "Lord" is from kyrios (kurios), which means "having power", "being in authority" and "being in possession of." It also means "lord", "master of the house," and "head of the family."

τὸν θεόν (noun sg masc acc) "God" is from theos, which means "God," the Deity."

σου (pron 2nd sg gen) "Thy" is from sou which means "you" and "your." -- The word translated as "thy" is possessive form of the second person pronoun.

ἐν "With" is from en, which means "in", "on", "at", "by", "among", "within", "surrounded by", "in one's hands", "in one's power," and "with". -- The word translated as "in" also means "within", "with," or "among."

ὅλῃ (adj sg fem dat) "Whole" is from holos, which means "the whole", "entire", "complete", "complete in all its parts", "wholly", "altogether", "on the whole", "speaking generally", "utter," "actually", "really, "the universe," and "safe and sound."

καρδίᾳ (verb 3rd sg pres subj act) "Heart" is from kardia, which means "heart (the physical organ)", "the seat of emotions (especially passion, rage, and anger)", "inclination", "desire," "purpose", "mind", "the pith (in wood), and "the deep (of the sea)."

σου (pron 2nd sg gen) "Thy" is from sou which means "you" and "your." -- The word translated as "thy" is possessive form of the second person pronoun.

καὶ "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."

ἐν "With" is from en, which means "in", "on", "at", "by", "among", "within", "surrounded by", "in one's hands", "in one's power," and "with". -- The word translated as "in" also means "within", "with," or "among."

ὅλῃ (adj sg fem dat) "Whole" is from holos (holos), which means "the whole", "entire", "complete", "complete in all its parts", "wholly", "altogether", "on the whole", "speaking generally", "utter," "actually", "really, "the universe," and "safe and sound."

τῇ ψυχῇ (noun sg fem dat) "Soul" is from psyche, which means "breath", "life", "self", "spirit," and "soul." It has the clear sense of the conscious self and is often translated as "life" in the Gospels. It is also used to describe "the spirit" of things. It is often translated as "soul."

σου (pron 2nd sg gen) "Thy" is from sou which means "you" and "your." -- The word translated as "thy" is possessive form of the second person pronoun.

καὶ "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."

ἐν "With" is from en, which means "in", "on", "at", "by", "among", "within", "surrounded by", "in one's hands", "in one's power," and "with".

ὅλῃ (adj sg fem dat) "Whole" is from holos (holos), which means "the whole", "entire", "complete", "complete in all its parts", "wholly", "altogether", "on the whole", "speaking generally", "utter," "actually", "really, "the universe," and "safe and sound."

τῇ διανοίᾳ (noun sg fem dat) "Mind" is from dianoia, which means "thought", "intention", "purpose", "notion", "process of thinking", "thinking faculty," intelligence", "understanding", "thoughts expressed," and "meaning."

σου:”(pron 2nd sg gen) "Thy" is from sou which means "you" and "your." -- The word translated as "thy" is possessive form of the second person pronoun.

Related Verses: