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Mark 12:44 For all they did cast in of their abundance...
KJV Verse:

Mark 12:44  For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living.

Greek Verse:

Mark 12:44  πάντες γὰρ ἐκ τοῦ περισσεύοντος αὐτοῖς ἔβαλον, αὕτη δὲ ἐκ τῆς ὑστερήσεως αὐτῆς πάντα ὅσα εἶχεν ἔβαλεν, ὅλον τὸν βίον αὐτῆς.

Literal Alternative:

Because all those tossed out of that being superfluous to them. This one, however, she tossed out of this poverty of hers, everything she had, that whole livelihood of hers.

Hidden Meaning:

The word translated as "cast" and "give" is a word that Jesus often uses somewhat humorously. It has the sense of our word "toss" or "dump."

There are two different words translated as "all" here. One means "all," the other means "whole."

Wordplay:

As I have tried to capture in the alternative above, Christ creates two parallels here that are lost in translation.  One parallel compare all of the other people with all of the widows living. The other parallels the same surplus with the same action.  While she did the same thing on surface, she was letting go something very different.

Vocabulary:

πάντες ( adj pl masc nom ) "All" is pas, which means "all", "the whole", "every", "anyone", "all kinds," and "anything." In the adverbial form, it means "every way", "on every side", "in every way," and "altogether."

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."

οὗτοι ( adj pl masc nom ) "These" is houtos, which as an adjective means "this", "that", "the nearer." As an adverb, it means "in this way", "therefore", "so much", "to such an extent," and "that is why."

ἐκ (prep) "Of" is ek, which means 1) [of motion] "out of", "from", "by", "away from;" 2) [of place] "beyond", "outside of", "beyond;" 3) [of succession] "after", "from;" 4) [of rest] "on", "in," 5) [of time] "since", "from", "at", "in;" 5) [of materials] "out of", "made from."

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."

περισσεύοντος ( part sg pres act masc gen ) "Abundance" is perisseuo which means "to be over and above", "to go beyond", "to abound in", "to be superior," and, in a negative sense, "to be superfluous." -- 

αὐτοῖς (adj pl masc dat) "Their" 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." In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there."

ἔβαλον ( verb 3rd pl aor ind act ) "Have...cast" is ballo, which means "to throw", "to let fall," "to cast," "to put", "to pour", "to place money on deposit", "push forward or in front [of animals]", "to shed", "to place", "to pay,"to throw [of dice,]" "to be lucky", "to fall", "to lay as foundation", "to begin to form", "to dash oneself with water," and "to bathe."

αὕτη  (adj sg fem nom) "She"  is houtos, which as an adjective means "this", "that", "the nearer." As an adverb, it means "in this way", "therefore", "so much", "to such an extent," and "that is why." --

δὲ (conj/adv) "But" is 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").

ἐκ (prep) "Of" is ek, which means 1) [of motion] "out of", "from", "by", "away from;" 2) [of place] "beyond", "outside of", "beyond;" 3) [of succession] "after", "from;" 4) [of rest] "on", "in," 5) [of time] "since", "from", "at", "in;" 5) [of materials] "out of", "made from."

τῆς (article sg fem gen ) "The" 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." -- The word translated as "the" 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. 

ὑστερήσεως  [unique](noun sg fem gen)  "Want" is from hysteresis, which is a NT form of the word husterêma, which means "shortcoming,""deficiency," and "need." The more standard word is used in Luke.

αὐτῆς (adj sg fem gen) "Her" 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." In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there."

πάντα ( adj pl neut acc ) "All" is pas, which means "all", "the whole", "every", "anyone", "all kinds," and "anything." In the adverbial form, it means "every way", "on every side", "in every way," and "altogether."

εἶχεν ( verb 3rd sg imperf ind act ) "She had" is echo, which means "to have", "to hold", "to possess", "to keep", "to have charge of", "to have due to one", "to maintain", "to hold fast", "to bear", "to carry", "to keep close", "to keep safe," and "to have means to do." 

ἔβαλεν. ( verb 3rd sg aor ind act ) "Hath cast" is ballo, which means "to throw", "to let fall," "to cast," "to put", "to pour", "to place money on deposit", "push forward or in front [of animals]", "to shed", "to place", "to pay,"to throw [of dice,]" "to be lucky", "to fall", "to lay as foundation", "to begin to form", "to dash oneself with water," and "to bathe."

ὅλον ( adj sg masc acc ) "[Even] all" is holos, which means "the whole", "entire", "the universe," and "safe and sound." This is not the word translated as "all" elsewhere in this verse (and most commonly in the NT), which is above, pas.

τὸν (article sg masc acc) 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."

βίον  [5 verses](noun sg masc acc) "Living" is  bios, which means "mode of life", "livelihood", "means of living", "the world we live in", "a biography," and "caste."

αὐτῆς. (adj sg fem gen) "Her" 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." In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there."

Related Verses:

Luke 21:4 For all these have of their abundance cast in

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.