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Mark 9:39 Forbid him not: for there is no man which shall do a miracle in my name...
KJV Verse:

Mark 9:39 Forbid him not: for there is no man which shall do a miracle in my name, that can lightly speak evil of me.

Greek Verse:

MAPKON 9:39 Μὴ κωλύετε αὐτόν, οὐδεὶς γὰρ ἔστιν ὃς ποιήσει δύναμιν ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματί μου καὶ δυνήσεται ταχὺ κακολογῆσαί με:

Literal Alternative:

Don't stop him. No one, consequently, exists who might produce a power upon this name of mine also might have the power suddenly to bad mouth me.

Hidden Meaning:

The words "miracle" and "can" are the noun and verb forms of the same word. The noun form is often translated as "might work" but "power" or "ability" comes close. The verb is usually translated as "can," but "having power" or "having ability" is more accurate. The word "in" referring to "my name" actually means "upon," but in English, we would say "using" to capture this idea. The Greek verb translated as "speak evil" literally means "bad mouth" so this verse has a bit of humor in it.


Μὴ (partic) "Not" is from 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.

κωλύετε,  (verb 2nd pl pres imperat act) "Forbid" is from kolyo, which means "to hinder", "withhold," and "to prevent."

αὐτόν,  (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."

οὐδεὶς (adj sg masc nom) "No man" is oudeis which means "no one", "not one", "nothing", "naught", "good for naught," and "no matter." -- The Greek word translated as "nothing" also means "no one" and other negatives nouns. However, to avoid the English double-negative, we translate it as its opposite "anyone" when used with another Greek negative.

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." --The word translated as "for" introduces a reason or explanation so "because" and, in questions, "why."  To prevent a run-on sentence, it can be translated as "this is why" or "this is because..." to start a new sentence.

ἔστιν (verb 3rd sg pres ind act) "Is" is eimi, which means "to be", "to exist", "to be the case," and "is possible." (The future form is esomai. The 3rd person present indicative is "esti.")

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

ποιήσει (verb 3rd sg aor subj) "Shall do" is poieo, which means "to make", "to produce", "to create", "to bring into existence", "to bring about", "to cause", "to render", "to consider", "to prepare", "to make ready," and "to do."

δύναμιν (noun sg fem acc ) "Miracle" is dnyamis, which means "power", "might", "influence", "authority", "capacity", "elementary force", "force of a word," and "value of money." Elemental forces are forces such as heat and cold. -- "Mighty works" is a word that describes abilities and capacities, what actions a person can do or has done so "power", "might", "influence", "authority," and "force." It does not carry the sense of authority over others, either people or laws. The verb form of this word is translated as "can" in the NT.

ἐπὶ (prep) "In" is epi, which means "on", "upon", "at", "by", "before", "across," "during", and "against."

τῷ  (article sg neut dat) Untranslated is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the"). 

ὀνόματί (noun sg neut dat) "Name" is onoma, which means "name." It means both the reputation of "fame," and "a name and nothing else," as opposed to a real person. Acting in someone's name means to act on their behalf, as their representative. 

μου (noun sg masc gen) "My" is mou, which means "me", and "mine". --  

καὶ (conj) "And" is 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." -- 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." When used in writing, it creates complex sentences, but when spoken, it makes a good pausing point so that an important or humorous word can follow.

δυνήσεται (verb 3rd sg aor subj mid) "Can" is from the verb, dunamai (dynamai), which means "to have power by virtue of your own capabilities", "to be able," and "to be strong enough."

ταχὺ (adj sg neut nom/acc) "Lightly" is from tachy. In the adjective form it means "swift", "fleet", "quick", "hasty", "rapid", "sudden," and "short." As an adverb (tachu, tachy), it means "swiftly", "hastily," and (rarely) "perhaps."

κακολογῆσαί (verb aor inf act) "Speak evil" is from kakologeo, which means "revile" and "abuse." It is a compound of the word that means "bad" and "evil" kakos and the word logos, which means "idea", "computation", "reckoning," and "value."

με: (noun sg masc acc) "Me" is eme, which means "I", "me", and "my".

Related Verses:

Mark 9:40 For he that is not against us is on our part.

Luke 9:50 Forbid him not: for he that is not against us is for us.

Matthew 12:30 He that is not with me is against me; 


Christ's Words Articles

About this Site

I started this project over a decade ago. The initial goal was to satisfy my own curiosity about how the original Greek of Jesus's words was translated into English comparing it to my work in translating ancient Chinese. 

This site does not promote any religious point of view about Christianity. I purposely use nonreligious sources for Greek translation.  My goal is simply to identify how Jesus used words. His use of Greek words somewhat unique since his words were spoken, not written.

The range of quality of the articles on this site reflects that it is a personal site, not a commercial one. No one proofreads my work. Some articles are over a decade old when I knew much less ancient Greek. Matthew articles are best since I have updated them all at least once. The ones in Mark are the oldest and poorest. Luke is not yet complete.