Matthew 6:5 And when you pray,

KJV Verse: 

Mat 6:5 And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

Greek Verse: 

Literal Alternative: 

Also, when you offer prayers, you are not really going to be like actors. Seeing that they like, in the meeting places and on the corners of crossroads, standing to offer prayers for themselves. this is so they might be shine among the people. Truly, I tell you: they have received that compensation of theirs.

Hidden Meaning: 

There is a lot of interesting and fun issues here that are lost in translation. One is the reference to "actors" on "broadway". Some of the most entertaining aspects of this verse are lost in the KJV translation.

The word translated as "thou prayest" means both offering worship and making a request of the divine. The two concepts were closely tied in the Greek.

When the verb "thou shalt" is from the verb "to be" in the future tense. It is not a command, but a description of a future activity.

The Greek word translated as "not" is the Greek negative used to deny objective facts, not opinions. this is not the usual negative Christ uses in prohibitions. To capture is sense adding the word "really" captures it.

The Greek word translated as "as" is an adverb that has the sense here of "just as" and "like".

The Greek for "the hypocrites" is a great example of a word that has taken its English meaning from how it is used in the Bible. It is an untranslated Greek word. The way we understand it in English today is not how the people of the time heard it. It means "actor" meaning "under separation," describing the separation between fiction and reality. Interesting enough, it also means "interpreter," which is another separation between what is said and reality.

"For" is another adverb meaning "seeing that" and "because".

"They love" is the Greek word that describes as "friendly love." this is not Greek word for "love" that Christ uses uses that is translated as "love of neighbor" for example, which has more of a sense of "caring". It's meaning is more like the English word "like" rather than "love" in English. More on the various Greek words translated as "love" in English in this article.

The Greek word translated as "to pray" is the same as the word used at the beginning of this verse meaning "to pray" and "to worship". However, the word follows "standing" not "love" so the sense is "standing to pray" not "love to pray". It is in a form that the activity is done to or for those doing to it, so the sense is "praying for themselves".

The word translated as "standing" means "to stand" and "to set up". However, it appears later in the Greek verse, after the "in the meeting places and in the corners" phrase. The specific description is of "standing to pray".

The description of "in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets" t is a little different than the one in Mat 6:2. The "synagogues" reference is the same, but the "street" is a completely different word. It is actually an adjective meaning "broad." It means "street" in the exact same way as "Broadway" means a "main street." However, in an interesting coincidence (see Einstein on coincidences), the verse puts actors on "Broadway" seems too perfect.

The word translated as "that" is one of those Greek words that introduce a new phrase that offers an explanation. It can be translated as a dependent clause, but if we start a new sentence with it, we get fewer run-on sentences.

The Greek word translated as "may be seen" is not a verb normally translated as "to see." It primarily means "to shine." The image is of actors wanting to shine among men. this is still a pretty good description of what actors (or politicians) want to do in public.

The Greek word for "of men" is in a form that of an indirect object but this form has a number of uses. One of them describes the area in which the verb is active so the sense is "in the sphere of men". The Greek word for "man" also means "person" and "humanity" in the singular. In the plural, as it is here, it means "people" and "peoples". Here it is introduced by an article "the people."

The "verily" phrase is used frequently by Christ. Its meaning is discussed in detail in this article. Its purpose is to highlight the deeper reality that Christ is describing. What follows, is the key view of what is real as opposed to what is "worldly."

This verse ends the same as Mat 6:2. It is much more financial and economic in meaning that religious. The word translated as '"they have" is not the normal verb "to have" but a verb meaning "to receive," specifically, receiving payment. The word translated as "reward" means payment for services rendered. The point is the people have the choice of worldly rewards or real rewards.

Wordplay: 

 Saying that actors love to stand on Broadway and "shine." 

The Spoken Version: 

“What about getting recognition for being pious and praying?” One of the Dedicated asked.
“Also when you pray for yourself,” the speaker responded happily, “you are really not going to be—like the actors!” He dramatically orated the last phrase. “Because they love—in the meeting places and in the crossroads, standing to pray for themselves so that they shine among the people!” He put his hands up in the air and bowed over and over, moving his arms to draw attention to himself.”
Everyone laughed.
“Honestly, I’m telling you, they are getting paid in full,” he said, putting his hand up to his chin again. “That pay of theirs,” he said again with distaste.

Vocabulary: 

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."

ὅταν (conj) "When" is from hotan, which means "whenever (as a condition)," and "since (as a cause)."

προσεύχησθε, (2nd pl pres subj mp) "Thou prayest" is from proseuchomai which means "to offer prayers or vows", "to worship," and "to pray for a thing." It is the combination of two Greek word, pros, meaning "towards" or "by reason of," and euchomai, meaning "to pray to God."

οὐκ (adv) "Not" is from ou which is the negative adverb for facts and statements, negating both single words and sentences. The other negative adverb, μή applies to will and thought; οὐ denies, μή rejects; οὐ is absolute, μή relative; οὐ objective, μή subjective.

ἔσεσθε (2nd pl fut ind mid) "Thou shalt" is from eimi, which means "to be", "to exist", "to be the case," and "is possible." (The future form is esomai.)

ὡς (adv) "As" is from hos, an adverb which means to "thus", "as", "how", "when", "where", "like", "just as", "so far as", "as much as can be", "that", "in order that", "nearly (with numbers)," and "know that."

οἱ ὑποκριταί: (noun sg masc dat) "The hypocrites" is from hypokrites means "interpreter" or "actor."

ὅτι (conj) "For" is from 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."

φιλοῦσιν (3rd pl pres ind act) "They love" is from phileo , which means "to love", "to regard with affection", "to kiss," and "to approve of."

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

ταῖς συναγωγαῖς (noun pl fem dat ) "Synagogue" is from synagoge, which means a "bringing together", "assembly", "place of assembly", "contracting", "collection", "combination", "conclusion," and "demonstration." It comes from a Greek word Christ uses commonly, sunagô, to mean "gather" or "bring together."

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."

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

ταῖς γωνίαις (adj pl fem gen ) "The corners" is from gonia, which means "corner", "angle", "a quarter of a compass," and "a leader of people."

τῶν πλατειῶν (adj pl fem gen) "Of the streets" is from plateia, which is an adjective that means "wide", "broad", "over a wide area", "broad shouldered [of a man]", "far advanced [of seasons]", "strong [oath]", "widespread", "flat of the hand", "frequent," and "street."

ἑστῶτες (part pl perf act masc nom) "Standing" is from histemi, which means "to make to stand", "to stand", "to set up", "to bring to a standstill", "to check", "to appoint", "to establish", "to fix by agreement", "to be placed", "to be set", "to stand still", "to stand firm", "to set upright", "to erected", "to arise," and "to place." Like the English words "put" and "set," it has a number of specific meanings from "to put down [in writing]", "to bury", "to establish", "to make", "to cause," and "to assign."

προσεύχεσθαι, (pres inf mp) "To pray" is from proseuchomai which means "to offer prayers or vows", "to worship," and "to pray for a thing." It is the combination of two Greek word, pros, meaning "towards" or "by reason of," and euchomai, meaning "to pray to God."

ὅπως (conj) "That" is from hopos, which is a conjunction that means "in such a manner as", "in order that", "in the manner in which", "how," [with negative] "there is no way that," and [in questions] "in what way."

φανῶσιν (3rd pl aor subj pass) "They...be seen" is from phaino , which means "to shine", "to give light," and "to appear." In its transitive form, not used here, it means "bring to light."

τοῖς ἀνθρώποις: "Of 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. -- The Greek word for "man" in the plural means "people" and "humanity" in general.

ἀμὴν (exclam) "Verily" is from amen, which is from the Hebrew, meaning "truly", "of a truth," and "so be it." It has no history in Greek before the NT.

λέγω (1st sg pres ind act) "I tell" is from llego means "pick up", "choose for oneself", "pick out," and "count," "recount", "tell over", "say", "speak", "teach", "mean", "boast of", "tell of", "recite," "nominate," and "command."

ὑμῖν (pron 2nd pl ) "To you" is from hymin (humin), which is the 2nd person plural dative pronoun. Dative is the case which indicates to whom something is given. -- The "you" here is plural, indicating all Christ's listeners.

ἀπέχουσι (verb 3rd pl pres ind act) "They have"" is from apecho, which means "to keep off or away from", "to hold one's hands off or away from", "to hold oneself off a thing", "to abstain or desist from it," "to project", "to extend", "to be far from," and "to receive payment in full."

τὸν μισθὸν (noun sg masc acc) "Reward" is from misthos, which means "wages" in the sense of compensation for work done, "pay", "hire", "fee", "recompense," and "reward."

αὐτῶν. (adj pl masc gen) ​"Their" 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 ones own accord."

Related Verses: 

Feb 22 2017

evidence: 

52.00