Matthew 20:11 And when they had received [it],

Spoken to: 

audience

Context: 

A parable comparing the realm of the skies to hiring workers throughout the day.

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

Getting, however, they [began to] grumble concerning the master of the house

KJV : 

Matthew 20:11 And when they had received [it], they murmured against the goodman of the house, [Saying]

Interesting and Hidden Aspects: 

A great, very funny word is used in this verse the only time by Jesus. It is translated as "murmured/grumbled" but the word reads funny in any language, goggyzon. The tense is the simple past, which is odd because this parable is mostly told in the special tense, "at that time" of Greek, with some lapses into the present tense and past perfect. This word, however, indicates an activity that started in the past but wasn't completed. So, the grumbling continues until today. Which is funny. 

The "saying" here that ends the verse better belongs with the next verse. It did in the KJV version, but not in the older Greek sources.

NIV : 

Matthew 20:11 When they received it, they began to grumble against the landowner.

Wordplay: 

The word translated as "murmur" sounds like grumbling, goggyzo,

My Takeaway: 

People began grumbling far in the past and haven't stopped.

Related Verses: 

Greek Vocabulary: 

λαβόντες [54 verse](part pl aor act masc nom) "When they had received" is from lambano means to "take", "take hold of", "grasp", "seize", "catch", "overtake", "find out", "detect", "take as", "take [food or drugs]", "understand", "take in hand", "undertake", "take in", "hold", "get", "receive [things]", "receive hospitably", "receive in marriage", "receive as produce", "profit", "admit", "initiate", "take hold of", "lay hold on", "seize and keep hold of", "obtain possession of", "lay hands upon", "find fault with", "censure," "to apprehend with the senses", "to take hold of," and "to seize." It is also specifically used to mean "seized with emotion."

δὲ (conj)  "And" is from 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").

ἐγόγγυζον [1 verse](verb 3rd pl imperf ind act) "They murmured" is from goggyzo, which means to "mutter," "murmur," and "grumble."

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)  "The" is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the"). 

οἰκοδεσπότου [12 verses](noun sg masc gen) "Goodman of the house" is oikodespotês , which is the "master of the house" and also means "steward of a house," and "native ruler." It is a combination of two words. The first part is from oikia, which means "building", "house", "family," and "household," and the second is despotes, which means "master" and "lord" but it isn't the word normally translated as "lord" in the Gospels.

λέγοντες [264 verses](part pl pres act masc nom) "Saying" is from lego, which means "to recount", "to tell over", "to say", "to speak", "to teach", "to mean", "boast of", "tell of", "recite," nominate," and "command." It has a secondary meaning "pick out," "choose for oneself", "pick up", "gather", "count," and "recount." A less common word that is spelt the same means "to lay", "to lay asleep" and "to lull asleep."

KJV Analysis: 

And  - (WW) The Greek word translated as "and" is usually translated as "but" because it joins phrases in an adversarial way. However, it also is an explanation of cause like "so."

when -- (IW) There is nothing that can be translated as "when" in the Greek source. It was added because the following verb was translated as active rather than a participle.

they -- This is from the third-person, plural form of the verb.

had -- (WT) This helping verb "had" indicates that the verb is the past perfect tense, but the verb is not the past but a form that indicates a specific point in time, past, present, or future.

received  - (WF) One verb is translated as " received" primarily means "take," and has many different uses as we use "take" and especially "get" in English. Among these are the ideas of "understanding" and "possessing." The form is of an adjective, "receiving." It is not in a past tense but a tense that means "at that time" which can refer to the present, past, or future. The story has been told either in this tense or the present tense so in English, we should default to the present.

[it],-- There is no Greek pronoun here, but Greek does not need pronouns when the object can be assumed from the context. In English, they are added for the subject-verb-object form of our sentences.

they -- This is from the third-person, plural form of the verb.

murmured  - "They murmured" is from a verb that means "to mutter", "to murmur," and "to grumble." It is in a tense indicating something that was begun but not finished. It is used to refer to people talking in a low tone and to the cooing of doves.

against  - "Against" is from a preposition that means "downwards", "against", "down toward," and "concerning."

the   -- The word translated as "the" is the Greek definite article. The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this", "that", "these", "those") than the English "the." See this article for more. 

goodman  of the house, - (CW) "Goodman of the house" is from a compound Greek word that is literally the "master of the house." It was translated as "householder."

[Saying]  - The word translated as "Saying" appears in this verse in the current sources, but in the KJV it appears next verse Matthew 20:12. It is the most common word that means "to say," and "to speak." This is in the present tense.

KJV Translation Issues: 

5
  • WW - Wrong Word -- The word translated as "and" should be "but."
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "when" doesn't exist in the source.
  • WT - Wrong Tense - The verb "had" indicates the past perfect tense, but the tense is something that happens at a specific point in time (past, present, or future).
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "received" is not an active verb but a participle, "getting."
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "goodman of the house" is not a phrase, but a compound word that means "householder."

NIV Analysis: 

against the landowner.

missing "however"  -- (MW) The untranslated word  "however" is usually translated as "but" because it joins phrases in an adversarial way. However, it also is an explanation of cause like "so."

When -- (IW) There is nothing that can be translated as "when" in the Greek source. It was added because the following verb was translated as active rather than a participle.

they -- This is from the third-person, plural form of the verb.

received  - (WF) One verb is translated as " received" primarily means "take," and has many different uses as we use "take" and especially "get" in English. Among these are the ideas of "understanding" and "possessing." The form is of an adjective, "receiving." It is not in a past tense but a tense that means "at that time" which can refer to the present, past, or future. The story has been told either in this tense or the present tense so in English, we should default to the present.

it,-- There is no Greek pronoun here, but Greek does not need pronouns when the object can be assumed from the context. In English, they are added for the subject-verb-object form of our sentences.

they -- This is from the third-person, plural form of the verb.

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

to -- (WF) This word "to" comes from the dative case of the following word that requires the addition of a preposition in English. The most common is a "to" for the English indirect object.

grumble -  "Grumble " is from a verb that means "to mutter", "to murmur," and "to grumble." It is in a tense indicating something that was begun but not finished. It is used to refer to people talking in a low tone and to the cooing of doves.

against  - "Against" is from a preposition that means "downwards", "against", "down toward," and "concerning."

the   -- The word translated as "the" is the Greek definite article. The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this", "that", "these", "those") than the English "the." See this article for more. 

goodman  of the house, - (CW) "Goodman of the house" is from a compound Greek word that is literally the "master of the house." It was translated as "householder."

[Saying]  - The word translated as "Saying" appears in this verse in the current sources, but in the KJV it appears next verse Matthew 20:12. It is the most common word that means "to say," and "to speak." This is in the present tense.

NIV Translation Issues: 

6
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "however" is not shown in the English translation.
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "when" doesn't exist in the source.
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "received" is not an active verb but a participle, "getting."
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "began" doesn't exist in the source.
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "to grumble" is not an infinitive,but an active verb, "grumbled."
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "goodman of the house" is not a phrase, but a compound word that means "householder."

Front Page Date: 

May 15 2021