Matthew 19:4 Have you not read, that he who made

Spoken to: 

audience

Context: 

 This is the introduction to a long lesson on the sexes. This lesson starts with the "first principles," that are easily recognized, that humanity comes in two contrasting forms.

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

Do you not recognize that the creating from inception, masculine and feminine he produced them.

My Takeaway: 

The sexes are easily recognized unless blinded by ideology.

KJV : 

Matthew 19:4 Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female,

NIV : 

Matthew 19:4 Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female.

Interesting and Hidden Aspects: 

Jesus uses a unique (for him) word here translated as "made." Usually, this would mean Jesus was quoting the Septuagint, but surprisingly, the Greek OT uses the common word that means "made," not this rare one. This word only appears once in the Septuagint, at the end of Isa 45:8, about the good things in heaven and earth God has created. The choice of this word seems to be because it has one sense not found in the common words: the sense of starting things that will grow (city, plants, etc.) and perpetuating something: the purpose of the two sexes.  Mark uses the noun form of this word, but the common verb.

These words "male" and "female" are only used by Jesus twice, here and in the parallel in Mark 10:6. These two words are from the Septuagint, Gen 5:2. They refer to the sexes, but they also contrast the concepts of "rough" and "coarse" with "soft" and "delicate."

The word translated as "read" is always translated as "read" in the NT, but it actually means "to recognize" and to "know certainly." It is from a root word that is usually translated as "to know." So, it is a reference to the visible distinction between the sexes. It is translated as "read" because Jesus uses it to refer to OT ideas, which were probably memorized as much as read.

Wordplay: 

 Two different words for "made" are used, one with the sense of being made from something, here from the primary power, and the second more in the sense of making as a service. 

Related Verses: 

Greek Vocabulary: 

Οὐκ "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.

ἀνέγνωτε (verb 2nd pl aor ind act) "Have ye...read" is from anaginosko, which means "to recognize," "to know well," "to know certainly," "to know again," "to own," and "to acknowledge." "

ὅτι (adv/conj) "That" is from hoti, which introduces a statement of fact "with regard to the fact that," "seeing that," and acts as a causal adverb meaning "for what," "because," "since," and "wherefore."

(article sg masc nom)  "He which" is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the"). 

κτίσας [1 verse](part sg aor act masc nom) "Made" is from ktizo, which means "(of a city) found," "build," "plant (a grove)," "produce," "create," "bring into being," "make," and "perpetrate (a deed).

ἀπ(prep) "At" is from apo, a preposition of separation which means "from" or "away from" from when referring to place or motion, "from" or "after" when referring to time, "from" as an origin or cause.

ἀρχῆς [13 verses](noun sg fem gen) "The beginning" is from arche, which means "beginning," "origin," "first principles," "first place of power," "empire," "command," "heavenly power," "power of evil," and a lot of other ways of expressing the source of things. this is the word from which we get both "archbishop," head bishops who can consecrate other bishops, and "archeology," the study of ancient history.

ἄρσεν [2 verses](noun sg neut acc) "Male" is arsen, which means "male," "the male sex," and "the masculine gender." It also means "mighty," "robust,"" "coarse" and "tough," which adds a little perspective to the idea.

καὶ (conj/adv) "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."

θῆλυ [2 verses](adj sg neut acc/nom) "Female" is thelys, which means "female," "the female sex," and "belonging to women." It also means "soft," "gentle," "tender," and "delicate."

ἐποίησεν (verb 3rd sg aor ind) "Made" is from poieo, which means "to make," "to produce," "to create," "to bring into existence," "to bring about," "to cause," "to render," "to consider," "to prepare," "to make ready," and "to do."

αὐτοὺς (adj pl masc acc) "Them" 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."

KJV Analysis: 

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

ye -- This is from the second-person, plural form of the verb.

not  - -- The Greek word translated as "not" is the Greek negative used to deny objective facts, not opinions. It means "no," "not," or"no truly."

read,  - (CW) "Read" is from a verb that means "know well," "recognize," and "know again." Here, since we are talking about the sexes, recognize seems most appropriate. The primary word that means "read" is similar, but not the same, but the two words are conflated in Stong's concordance.

that  - The word translated as "that" introduces a statement of fact or cause and is sometimes translated as "seeing that."

he which -- (CW) The word translated as "he which" is the Greek definite article. The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those") than the English "the." See this article for more. It is masculine, but it is not the Greek words meaning "he which."

made  - (CW, WF) "Made" is from a verb in a noun form. The verb is different from the one translated as "made" later in the verse. It has the unique sense of starting things that will grow (city, plants, etc.) and perpetuating something. This is not an active verb, but a verbal noun, a gerund, that is the subject of the clause.

them -- This English objective pronoun is added and not in the Greek source.   In Greek, pronoun objects are not repeated after each verb because they are implied by their first occurrence.

at  - The word translated as "from" means "from" in both location and when referring to a source.

the -- (IP) There is nothing that can be translated as "it" in the Greek source.

beginning  - "Beginning" is from a noun that means "beginning," "origin," "foundation," "source," "first place," "power," and "first principles." "Incpetion" works here.

made  - The Greek word translated as "made" has the primary meaning of "making" or producing" something or "causing" or "rendering" as service. It is not the word translated as "made" above. It is usually translated as "do" in the NT but the translation here is closer to its real meaning.

them -- The word translated as "his" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.

male  - "Male" is from a word that means "male," "the male sex," and "the masculine gender." It also means "coarse" and "tough," which adds a little perspective to the idea. It is not the word usually translated as "man" in statements such as "the Son of man," but a word Jesus only uses twice. It came from the Septuagint version of Gen 5:2.

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

female, -- "Female" is from a word which means "female," "the female sex," and "belonging to women." It also means "soft," "gentle," "tender," and "delicate." It came from the Septuagint version of Gen 5:2.

KJV Translation Issues: 

6
  • WT - Wrong Tense - The verb "have" indicates the past perfect tense, but the tense is something that happens at a specific point in time (past, present, or future).
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "read" is better translated as "recognize."
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "he which" are not the common words usually translated as "he which."
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "made" is not the common word usually translated as "made."
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "made" is not an active verb but a participle, "creating."
  • IP - Inserted Phrase-- The phrase "the" doesn't exist in the source.

NIV Analysis: 

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

n’t - -- The Greek word translated as "not" is the Greek negative used to deny objective facts, not opinions. It means "no," "not," or"no truly."

you -- This is from the second-person, plural form of the verb.

read,  - (CW) "Read" is from a verb that means "know well," "recognize," and "know again." Here, since we are talking about the sexes, recognize seems most appropriate. The primary word that means "read" is similar, but not the same, but the two words are conflated in Stong's concordance.

that  - The word translated as "that" introduces a statement of fact or cause and is sometimes translated as "seeing that."

at  - The word translated as "from" means "from" in both location and when referring to a source.

the -- (IP) There is nothing that can be translated as "it" in the Greek source.

beginning  - "Beginning" is from a noun that means "beginning," "origin," "foundation," "source," "first place," "power," and "first principles." "Inception" works here.

the -- The word translated as "the" is the Greek definite article. The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those") than the English "the." See this article for more. It is masculine, but it is not the Greek words meaning "he which."

Creator - (WF) "Creator" is from a verb in a noun form. This verb has the unique sense of starting things that will grow (city, plants, etc.) and perpetuating something. This is not an active verb, but a verbal noun, a gerund, that is the subject of the clause. It is masculine, so making it into a noun representing a person is not as much of a stretch

‘made  - The Greek word translated as "made" has the primary meaning of "making" or producing" something or "causing" or "rendering" as service. It is not the word translated as "made" above. It is usually translated as "do" in the NT but the translation here is closer to its real meaning.

them -- This English objective pronoun is added and not in the Greek source.   In Greek, pronoun objects are not repeated after each verb because they are implied by their first occurrence.

them -- The word translated as "his" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.

male  - "Male" is from a word that means "male," "the male sex," and "the masculine gender." It also means "coarse" and "tough," which adds a little perspective to the idea. It is not the word usually translated as "man" in statements such as "the Son of man," but a word Jesus only uses twice. It came from the Septuagint version of Gen 5:2.

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

female, -- "Female" is from a word which means "female," "the female sex," and "belonging to women." It also means "soft," "gentle," "tender," and "delicate." It came from the Septuagint version of Gen 5:2.

NIV Translation Issues: 

4
  • WT - Wrong Tense - The verb "have" indicates the past perfect tense, but the tense is something that happens at a specific point in time (past, present, or future).
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "read" is better translated as "recognize."
  • IP - Inserted Phrase-- The phrase "the" doesn't exist in the source.
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "made" is not an active verb but a participle, "creating."

Front Page Date: 

Apr 17 2021