Matthew 15:19 For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts,

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

This is because from the heart [these] make themselves come true: worthless arguments/court cases, killing, adulteries, promiscuity, stealing, lying, and slander.

KJV : 

Mat 15:19 For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies:

Interesting and Hidden Aspects: 

Notice that Christs list of seven sins is different than the traditional seven deadly sins. Christ's sins are all actions, not "mental" acts such as "envy." The issue here is clearly making through "come true."

The word translated as "for" can be treated as supporting a dependent clause, or, in written English, as "this is because..." to start a new sentence.

The Greek preposition translated as "out of" means "out of" and "from." In Greek, they use the genitive case instead of a preposition for the types of phrases with usually use with "of."

"The heart" is from from a noun that means both the physical heart and the seat of emotions, especially the stronger emotions of passion, rage, and courage." It also means "inclination", "desire," and "purpose." The "heart" is Christ's symbol for relationships and feeling. Here, he makes it clear that not only positive feeling, such as love, are associated with the heart. The source of what we share with people is what we feel about people.

The word translated as "come forth" means literally "to go or come out," but it has a secondary meaning of "making something come true." It is in the form of a verb where the subject acts on itself, so "brings itself from" or "makes itself come true."

The word translated as "evil" means "second-rate" or "worthless." This article explores it meaning in more detail. It is an adjective, but when used as a noun, therefore, "what is worthless." It is usually translated as "evil" in the NT. More about this word in this article.

"Thoughts" is a noun which means "balancing of accounts", "debate", "argument," and "discussion." It can also mean "balancing of accounts", "calculation," and it is the term for a "circuit court." It isn't usually translated as "thought."\

Most of the other words here are very straight forward.

"Murders" is from a noun that means both homicide and killing as a punishment.

"Adulteries" is from a word that means adultery.

"Fornications" is from a word that which means promiscuity, generally, and "prostitution" for a woman and "fornication" for a man.

"Theft" is from a word that cover forms of dishonesty from theft to fraud,

"False witness" means "perjury."

Only the word translated as "blasphemy" is a little different from our meaning since, at the time, it meant slander or profane speech generally rather than specifically slander against God.

Related Verses: 

Greek Vocabulary: 

ἐκ "Out of" is from 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."

γὰρ "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."

τῆς καρδίας (noun sg fem acc/gen) "The heart" is from kardia, which means "heart (the physical organ)", "the seat of emotions (especially passion, rage, and anger)", "inclination", "desire, ""purpose", "mind", "the pith (in wood), and "the deep (of the sea)."

ἐξέρχονται (verb 3rd pl pres ind mp) "Come forth" is from exerchomai, which means "to come or go out of ""to march forth", "go out on", "to stand forth", "to exceed all bounds", "to come to an end", "to go out of office," and [of dreams or prophecies] "to come true."

διαλογισμοὶ (noun pl masc nom)"Thoughts" is dialogismos , which means "balancing of accounts", "calculation, ""consideration," "debate", "argument," and "discussion." It can also mean and it is the term for a "circuit court" and a :judicial inquiry." It isn't usually translated as "thought."

πονηροί, (adj pl masc nom) "Evil" is from poneros, which means "burdened by toil", "useless," and "worthless." In a moral sense, it means "worthless", "base," and "cowardly."

φόνοι, (noun pl masc nom) "Murders" is phonos, which means "murder", "slaughter", "homicide", "death as a punishment," and "killing."

μοιχεῖαι, (noun pl fem nom) "Adulteries" is moicheia which means "adultery."

πορνεῖαι, (noun pl fem nom) "Fornications" is porneia which means "unchastity," "prostitution" (for a woman), and "fornication" (for a man). It is a metaphor for idolatry.

κλοπαί, ( noun pl fem nom) "Thefts" is from klope, which means "theft", "plagiarism," "fraud," and "stealth."

ψευδομαρτυρίαι, (noun pl fem nom) "False witness" is from psuedomartyria, which means "false witness" and "perjury."


noun pl fem nom) "Blasphemies" is from blasphemia, which means a "word of evil omen", "profane speech", "slander", "defamation," and "abuse." In reading the NT, it came to mean "irreverent speech against God," but this is not what it meant when the Gospels were written.