Matthew 13:31 The kingdom of heaven is like

KJV Verse: 

Mat 13:31 The kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and sowed in his field:

Greek Verse: 

Literal Alternative: 

Similar is the reign of the skies?  A kernel of mustard that taking a person spread on his land.

Interesting and Hidden Aspects: 

Notice that the word translated as "took" works better given its from as the adjective, understanding. Both this Parable of the Mustard Seed and the following Parable of the Yeast and the Dough explain Christ's symbols in greater detail .

The word translated as "the kingdom" can be the region, the reign, the rule, the castle or the authority of a ruler. Christ does not seem to use it to mean a physical region, so its translation as "rule" or "reign" seems more appropriate.

The word translated as "heaven" means sky, the climate, and the universe. It is also plural here. It also meant the home of the gods in a physical sense: the sun, moon, and planets were named for the gods.

The verb "is" here is the common form of "to be" in Greek. It means to have a certain characteristic or remain in a certain condition.

The Greek word translated as "to a grain" means "a grain" and "a seed," but interestingly is used as a metaphor for a "grain of sense," which fits directly into the meaning here.

"Mustard seed," though translated as seed, is sinapi, which means simply "mustard."

The word translated as "which" is a demonstrative pronoun, but it often acts as a connective pronoun introducing a dependent clause.

The Greek word for "a man" in the singular means "person" and "humanity" and "people" and "peoples" in plural.

The word translated as "took" primarily means "take," and has many different uses as we use "take" in English. Among these are the ideas of "understanding" and "possessing." It is in the form, not of a verb, but an adjective modifying the subject. The only meaning the modifies "a man" very well is "understanding."

"And sowed" is from a verb that that means "to sow seed", "to scatter like seed," and "to beget offspring.

The word translated as "in" also means "within", "with," or "among."

The word translated as "his" is the Greek word commonly translated as pronouns in English, but it has a few shades of meaning our pronouns do not have. The word technically means "the same," and when used as a pronoun can mean "the true self" as opposed to appearances

"Field" is from the Greek word that means "field", "lands," or "country."

Greek Vocabulary: 

Ὁμοία (adj pl neut acc) "Like" is from homoios, which means "like", "resembling", "the same", "equal in force, "a match for one", "suiting", "of the same rank", "alike", "in like manner," and "equally."

ἐστὶν (3rd sg pres ind act) "Is" is from 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.")

βασιλεία (noun sg fem nom) "The kingdom" is from basileia, which means "kingdom", "dominion", "hereditary monarchy", "kingly office," (passive) "being ruled by a king," and "reign." -

τῶν οὐρανῶν (noun pl masc gen) "Of Heaven" is from the Greek ouranos, which means "heaven as in the vault of the sky", "heaven as the seat of the gods", "the sky", "the universe," and "the climate." --

κόκκῳ (noun sg masc dat) "To a grain" is from kokkos (kokkos), which means "a grain" and "a seed," and a metaphor for a "grain of sense."

σινάπεως, (noun sg neut gen) "Of mustard seed," is from sinapi, (sinapi) which means simply "mustard."

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

λαβὼν (part sg aor act masc nom) "Took" 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."

ἄνθρωπος (noun sg masc nom) "A 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.

ἔσπειρεν (verb 3rd sg aor ind act) "Sowed" is from speirô, which is a verb, that means "to sow seed", "to scatter like seed," and "to beget offspring.

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

τῷ ἀγρῷ "Field" is from ἀγρὸν agros, which means "field", "lands," or "country.

αὐτοῦ: "His" 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 one's own accord."

Related Verses: