Luke 6:39 Can the blind lead the blind?

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

For counsel, does it have the power in itself, a blind person to lead a blind person

KJV : 

Luke 6:39 Can the blind lead the blind? shall they not both fall into the ditch?

What is Lost in Translation: 

The verse is a change of subject and tone from one precedes it. This may mean that it was a response to a question. Given  Christ's similar statements (Matthew 15:14), which referred to the Pharisees, we can assume that the question was about their teaching in contrast to his own.

The verse begins with an untransated word. It could be the adverb meaning "let alone", or "much less", This would come close in translation to matching the beginning of Matthew 15:14, which starts with a completely different word, a verb translated as "let alone". However, the word could also be the dative form of the noun meaning "wisdom", "skill", "craft", "counsel", " plan," and "undertaking", though not the normal Greek word Christ uses that is translated as "wisdom". 

The word translated as "can" means having the power or possibly a desire to accomplish something. Often, in English, "can" is a helper verb, indicating a possibility. In Greek, it indicates ability or power.

"The blind" is a word that means both physically and mentally blind. It also means all things that are obscure. It is also a metaphor for disabilities of the other senses. It is not "the blind" referring to a group, but "a blind" with the sense of "a blind person". 

The word translated as "lead" is the verb form of the noun "leaders" used before. It means "to lead one upon his way," and "to guide." These concepts were also used for those who helped those ignorant of a given area.

The third occurrence of "the blind" it again singular, but the object of the sentence. Again it refers to a single person.

The word translated as "both" means "both sides" and "both ways" as well as "both together." It is chosen because unlike the common word for "both," it implies two different ways or sides together.

"Shall fall" is translated from a Greek word that means "to fall" and "to fall down." It is the root word for dozens of Greek terms involving moving from a higher state to a lower one. Like our word "to fall" it has a number of special meanings including "to fall into a given class", "to prostrate", "to fall from power", "to perish," and so on.

The word translated as "into" means "into" a place, "towards" as a direction, and "up to" limits in time and measure.

"Ditch" is a Greek noun that means any hole or pit dug into the earth. It is also a term used to to refer to graves and a pit from offering sacrifices.

Related Verses: 

Greek Vocabulary: 

Μήτι (adv) Untranslated is metis, which is the adverb, meaning "let alone", "much less", "do I [in direct questions], "lest any one", "lest anything", "that no one," and "that nothing." Or it could be the dative form of the noun meaning "wisdom", "skill", "craft", "counsel", " plan," and "undertaking."

δύναται (verb 3rd sg pres ind mp)"Can" is the verb, dynamai, which means "to have power by virtue of your own capabilities", "to be able," and "to be strong enough."

τυφλὸς (adj sg masc nom)"The blind is typhlos, which means "blind", "lacking vision of the future", "dark", "dim", "obscure", "hidden", and "no outlet (of passages)". 

τυφλὸν (adj sg masc acc)"The blind is typhlos, which means "blind", "lacking vision of the future", "dark", "dim", "obscure", "hidden", and "no outlet (of passages)". 

ὁδηγεῖν; (verb pres inf act) "Lead" is from the verb form, hodêgeô, which means "to lead one upon his way," and "to guide." These concepts were also used for those who helped those ignorant of a given area.

οὐχὶ (partic)"Not" is ouchi, an adverb which means "no", "no truly", "assuredly not", "not however", "nevertheless," "notwithstanding", "yet", "still", "never yet", "for not", "indeed", "for surely not", "no,—certainly not", "for I don't suppose," and "for in no manner." -- The word translated as "not" is a different form of the usual Greek negative of fact meaning "no truly", "assuredly not", "not however", "nevertheless," and "notwithstanding."

ἀμφότεροι (adj pl masc nom)"Both" is from amphoteroi, which means "either", "both of two", "both together", "towards both sides", "both ways", "on both sides," and "all together."

εἰς (prep) "Into" is from eis, which means "into (of place)," "up to (of time)", "until (of time)", "as much as (of measure or limit)", "as far as (of measure or limit)", "towards (to express relation)", "in regard to (to express relation)", "of an end or limit," and "for (of purpose or object)."

βόθυνον (noun sg masc acc) "Ditch" is from bothunos, a form of bothros, which means "hole", "trench", "pit dug in the ground", "trough," generally, "hollow," also "a grave", "ritual pit for offerings."

ἐμπεσοῦνται; (verb 3rd pl fut ind mid) "Shall...fall" is from the verb pipto, which means "to fall", "to fall down", "to be cast down," "fall upon", "intersect (geometry)", "meet", "pass through", "fall violently upon", "attack", "fall in battle", "sink{in water)", "fall short i.e. fail", " fall out of", "lose a thing", "escape from", "fall asleep", "to be accessible to perception", "to fall (between her feet, i.e. to be born)", "to let fall[dice)", "turn out," and "fall under (belong to a class)."

Front Page Date: 

Oct 11 2017