Matthew 18:33 Shouldn't you also have had compassion on your fellow

Spoken to: 

audience

Context: 

In a teaching about forgiving mistakes a parable about forgiving debts.

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

Wasn't there a need also [for] you to show that pity of yours just as I myself showed to you pity?

My Takeaway: 

People want to see us treat others as well as they have treated us.

KJV : 

Matthew 18:33 Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee?

NIV : 

Matthew 18:33 Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’

What is Lost in Translation: 

This verse uses the same words to parallel the how the servant acted and how the king acted, but these parallels are lost in translation that translates two key words differently.

Wordplay: 

There is a repetition of the same words here to contrast the behavior of the servant and the king. 

Related Verses: 

Greek Vocabulary: 

οὐκ (partic) "Not" is from ou which is the negative adverb for facts and statements, negating both single words and sentences. The other negative adverb, μή applies to will and thought; οὐ denies, μή rejects; οὐ is absolute, μή relative; οὐ objective, μή subjective.

ἔδει [28 verses](verb 3rd sg imperf ind act) "Shouldest" is from, dei, which means "it is needful for one to do," "one must," "it being needful or fitting," and "there is need."

καὶ (partic) "And" is from 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."

σὲ (pron 2nd sg acc) "Thou" is from su which means "you" and "your."

ἐλεῆσαι [10 verses](verb aor inf act) "Have had compassion" is from the verb eleeo, which means "to have pity on," "to show pity to," and "to feel pity." In the passive, "to be shown pity," and "to be pitied." It is from the Greek eleos, which means "mercy," "pity," and "compassion."

τὸν (article sg masc acc)  "The" is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the"). 

σύνδουλόν [5 verses](noun sg masc acc) "Fellowservant" is syndoulos, which means "slave of the same master," "companion in slavery," and "fellow slave."

σου (pron 2nd sg gen) "Thy" is from sou which means "you" and "your."

ὡς (adv/conj) "As" is hos, an adverb which means to "thus," "as," "how," "when," "where," "like," "just as," "so far as," "as much as can be," "that," "in order that," "nearly (with numbers)," and "know that."

κἀγὼ [31 verses](pron 1st sg masc nom) "And...I" is kago, a contraction of kai ego. "And" is from 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." "I" is from ego, which is the first person singular pronoun meaning "I." It also means "I at least," "for my part," "indeed," and "for myself."

σὲ (pron 2nd sg acc) "On thee" is from su which means "you" and "your."

ἠλέησα [10 verses](verb 1st sg aor ind act) "Had mercy" is the verb eleeo, which means "to have pity on," "to show pity to," and "to feel pity." In the passive, "to be shown pity," and "to be pitied."

KJV Analysis: 

Shouldest  - (CW) Shouldest" is from a verb which means "it is needful for one to do," "one must," "it being needful or fitting," and "there is need."

not  - The Greek word translated as "not" is the Greek negative used to deny objective facts, not opinions. It makes a negative statement of fact. In English, we would as "really" or some such word to convey this idea.

thou  - (WF) The "thou" here is not the subject of the "it is needful" verb, but its object. So "It is needed by or for you."

also  - The Greek word translated as "also" is used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis "even," "also," and "just." It is translated as "even" below.

have -- This helping verb is used to create an English verb-object combination to capture the meaning of the Greek verb.

had  - (WT) This helping verb "had" indicates that the verb is the tense indicating an action completed in the past. This is not the tense of the verb here.

compassion  - (WF) "Have had compassion" means "to have pity on," and "to show mercy to." In this first occurrence, it is not an active verb, but an infinitive, "to have mercy." This is an infinitive, not an active verb.

on -  This is added to connect the verb to its object.

thy  - -- The word translated as "thy" is the genitive form of the singular, second-person pronoun, which is most commonly the possessive form. This pronoun follows the noun so "of yours."

missing "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word 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. 

fellowservant, - The word translated as "fellow servant" means literally "slaves together," but the idea of a "slave" included the people who were under bondage for owing a debt.

even  - The Greek word translated as "even" is used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis "even," "also," and "just."

as  - "As" is from an adverb that means to "thus," "as," "how," "when," "where," "like," and "just as."

I  - The "even...I" is from a single contraction, combining the word for "also" used above and the personal pronoun. Since the personal pronoun is implicitly part of the verb, it is only added explicitly to emphasize it, as we might say, "I myself."

missing "myself" -- (MW)  The subjective pronoun repeats the information in the verb so it should be repeated in English like "I myself."

had -- This helping verb is used to create an English verb-object combination to capture the meaning of the Greek verb.

pity  - (CW) "Pity" is from the same verb translated as "have had compassion" above. Here, however, it is an active verb. This is the same word as "mercy" above.

on -  This is added to connect the verb to its object.

thee? -- The word translated as "thee" is the objective form of the second-person, singular pronoun.

KJV Translation Issues: 

7
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "shouldest" is not the common word usually translated as "shouldest."
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "thou" here is not the subject but an object.
  • WT - Wrong Tense - The verb "had" indicates the past perfect tense, but the tense is something that happens at a specific point in time (past, present, or future).
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "have compassion" is not an active verb but an infinitive, "to have compassion."
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" before "fellow servants" is not shown in the English translation.
  • MW -- Missing Word  -- The pronoun repeats the information in the verb so it should be repeated in English like "I myself."
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "pity" is translated as "compassion" above.

NIV Analysis: 

Should- - (CW) Should-" is from a verb which means "it is needful for one to do," "one must," "it being needful or fitting," and "there is need."

n't  - The Greek word translated as "not" is the Greek negative used to deny objective facts, not opinions. It makes a negative statement of fact. In English, we would as "really" or some such word to convey this idea.

you - (WF) The "you " here is not the subject of the "it is needful" verb, but its object. So "It is needed by or for you."

missing "also"  -- (MW) The untranslated word "also" is used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis "even," "also," and "just." It is translated as "even" below.

have -- This helping verb is used to create an English verb-object combination to capture the meaning of the Greek verb.

had  - (WT) This helping verb "had" indicates that the verb is the tense indicating an action completed in the past. This is not the tense of the verb here.

mercy - (WF) "Mercy"  means "to have pity on," and "to show mercy to." In this first occurrence, it is not an active verb, but an infinitive, "to have mercy." This is an infinitive, not an active verb.

on -  This is added to connect the verb to its object.

your - -- The word translated as "your " is the genitive form of the singular, second-person pronoun, which is most commonly the possessive form. This pronoun follows the noun so "of yours."

missing "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word 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. 

fellow servant, - The word translated as "fellow servant" means literally "slaves together," but the idea of a "slave" included the people who were under bondage for owing a debt.

just - The Greek word translated as "just " is used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis "even," "also," and "just."

as  - "As" is from an adverb that means to "thus," "as," "how," "when," "where," "like," and "just as."

I  - The "even...I" is from a single contraction, combining the word for "also" used above and the personal pronoun. Since the personal pronoun is implicitly part of the verb, it is only added explicitly to emphasize it, as we might say, "I myself."

missing "myself" -- (MW)  The subjective pronoun repeats the information in the verb so it should be repeated in English like "I myself."

had -- This helping verb is used to create an English verb-object combination to capture the meaning of the Greek verb.

on -  This is added to connect the verb to its object.

you? -- The word translated as "you" is the objective form of the second-person, singular pronoun.

  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "shouldest" is not the common word usually translated as "shouldest."
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "you" here is not the subject but an object.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "also" is not shown in the English translation.
  • WT - Wrong Tense - The verb "had" indicates the past perfect tense, but the tense is something that happens at a specific point in time (past, present, or future).
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "have mercy " is not an active verb but an infinitive, "to have mercy ."
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" before "fellow servants" is not shown in the English translation.
  • MW -- Missing Word  -- The pronoun repeats the information in the verb so it should be repeated in English like "I myself."
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "mercy" is not shown in the English translation.

Front Page Date: 

Apr 14 2021