Matthew 20:14 Take yours and go your way:

Spoken to: 

audience

Context: 

A parable comparing the realm of the skies to hiring workers throughout the day.

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

Pick up this of yours and go away! I desire, however, to these, the last to give as much as also to you.

My Takeaway: 

How other people see us is not the measure for what is fair or good. Everyone has their own God-given  perspective.

KJV : 

Matthew 20:14 Take that thine is, and go thy way: I will give unto this last, even as unto thee.

NIV : 

Matthew 20:14 Take your pay and go. I want to give the one who was hired last the same as I gave you.

Interesting and Hidden Aspects: 

Jesus here sets out the principles of private property. First, you are entitled to compensation for your efforts, but only for what you have agreed. Second, you are entitled to do with your property whatever you want. Just like other people cannot say what is "fair" for you, other people cannot say what you should do with what you have.

This idea is very profound. It says that there is no simple standard for economic value. Every person is free to say what their effort is worth. Every person is free to say what they find valuable.

Wordplay: 

The word used for "take" means "remove" and "exalt" so it not only means to take it but to appreciate it. 

The word "last" here, continues the general wordplay of "first" and "last" seen in the last several verses where they mean "highest" and "lowest," "best" and "worst." 

Related Verses: 

Greek Vocabulary: 

ἆρον [56 verses](verb 2nd sg aor imperat act) "Take" is from airo, which means "to lift up," "to raise," "to raise up," "to exalt," "to lift and take away," and "to remove."

τὸ (article sg neut acc) "That" is from the Greek article, "the," which usually precedes a noun and, without a noun, takes the meaning of "the one."

σὸν (adj sg neut acc) Thine" is from sos, which means "thy," "thine" "of thee," or "from thee."

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."

ὕπαγε: [47 verses](verb 2nd sg pres imperat act) "Go" is hypago, which means "to lead under," "to bring under," "to bring a person before judgment," "to lead on by degrees," "to take away from beneath," "to withdraw," "to go away," "to retire," "to draw off," and "off with you."

θέλω [64 verses](verb 1st sg pres ind act) "I will" is from thelo, which as a verb means "to be willing (of consent rather than desire)," "to wish," "to ordain," "to decree," "to be resolved to a purpose" "to maintain," "to hold," "to delight in, and "will (too express a future event)."

δὲ (conj) Untranslated is de which means "but" and "on the other hand." It is the particle that joins sentences in an adversarial way but can also be a weak connective ("and") and explanation of cause ("so") and a condition ("if").

τούτῳ [93 verses](adj sg masc dat) "Unto this" is from touto, which means "from here," "from there," "this [thing]," or "that [thing]."

τῷ (article sg masc dat)  Untranslated is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the").

ἐσχάτῳ [21 verses](adj sg masc dat) "Last" is from eschatos. In space, this means "furthest." In degree, it means "uttermost" and "highest." In persons, it means "lowest" and "meanest." Of time, it means "last" and "ending."

δοῦναι [147 verses](verb aor inf act) "Give" is didomi, which means "to give," "to grant," "to hand over," "give freely," "to be ready to give," "offer," "appoint," "establish," "grant" another to one's entreaties, "pardon" at one's request, "forgive" one a thing, "condone." "concede" in argument, "give oneself up," "devote oneself," of the laws, "grant permission," and "to describe."

ὡς (adv/conj) "How" 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."

καὶ (conj/adv) "Even" 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."

σοί: [81 verses](pron 2nd sg dat) "You" is soi which is the singular, second-person pronoun, "you".

KJV Analysis: 

Take  - The word translated as "take" means "lift up" but it also means "to remove" and "to exalt." It is not the common word use for "take" in the Gospels. It is used to create a double meaning.

that -- The word translated as "that" 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. 

thine - This is not the common second-person possessive pronoun, but a special pronoun used to describe things that are owned. Jesus only uses it eight times.

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

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

go  - "Go" is from a Greek verbal command that means literally "go under" or "bring under," but Christ usually uses it to mean "go away" and "depart."

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

I -- This is from the first-person, singular form of the verb.

will - (CW) The Greek word translated as "I will" is not the same as the helper verb "will" in English, which usually expresses the future tense. Its primary purpose is to express consent and even a delight in doing something.

missing "but"  -- (MW) The untranslated word "but" appears here but is untranslated. It joins phrases in an adversarial way. Since it always falls in the second position, translating it as "however" often captures its feeling better.

give  - (WF) The word translated as "give" is the common word for "give" in Greek, but it has a number of special uses that our word does not have, including "to forgive," "to offer," and so on. This is not an active, future verb, but an infinitive.

unto -- This word "unto" comes from the dative case of the following word that requires the addition of a preposition in English. The most common is a "to" for the English indirect object.

this  -- The word translated as "this" means "from here" or "this/that thing.

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. 

last,  - "Last" form the same word that has been used in wordplay here since before this parable started in Matthew 19:30 and in the last several verses. It is singular, not plural so it is used as a title for the group.

even  - The Greek word translated as "even" is usually used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis ("also") and, In a series, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

as -- The word translated as "as" has a very broad meaning, translating as "how," "when," "where," "just as," "like," and related words.

unto -- This word "unto" comes from the dative case of the following word that requires the addition of a preposition in English. The most common is a "to" for the English indirect object.

thee. -- The word for "you" is the indirect object form of the singular, second-person pronoun. 

KJV Translation Issues: 

6
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "is" doesn't exist in the source.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "will" is a helper verb indicating the future tense.
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "give" is not an active verb but an infinitive, "to give."
  • IP - Inserted Phrase-- The phrase "thy way" doesn't exist in the source.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "but" is not shown in the English translation.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" before "last" is not shown in the English translation.

NIV Analysis: 

Take  - The word translated as "take" means "lift up" but it also means "to remove" and "to exalt." It is not the common word use for "take" in the Gospels. It is used to create a double meaning.

your - This is not the common second-person possessive pronoun, but a special pronoun used to describe things that are owned. Jesus only uses it eight times.

pay -- The word translated as "pay" 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.

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

go  - "Go" is from a Greek verbal command that means literally "go under" or "bring under," but Christ usually uses it to mean "go away" and "depart."

I -- This is from the first-person, singular form of the verb.

want - ( The Greek word translated as "want" expresses consent and even a delight in doing something.

missing "but"  -- (MW) The untranslated word "but" appears here but is untranslated. It joins phrases in an adversarial way. Since it always falls in the second position, translating it as "however" often captures its feeling better.

give  - The word translated as "give" is the common word for "give" in Greek, but it has a number of special uses that our word does not have, including "to forgive," "to offer," and so on.

the one --  The "the one" 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. 

who  - (CW) The word translated as "who" means "from here" or "this/that thing. It is not the form used as the connective pronoun.

was hired -- (IW) There is nothing that can be translated as "was hired" in the Greek source.

last,  - "Last" form the same word that has been used in wordplay here since before this parable started in Matthew 19:30 and in the last several verses. It is singular, not plural so it is used as a title for the group.

the same - (CW) The Greek word translated as "the same " is usually used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis ("also") and, In a series, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

as -- The word translated as "as" has a very broad meaning, translating as "how," "when," "where," "just as," "like," and related words.

I gave -- (IW) There is nothing that can be translated as "I gave" in the Greek source.

you. -- The word for "you" is the indirect object form of the singular, second-person pronoun. 

NIV Translation Issues: 

6
  • WW - Wrong Word -- The word translated as "pay" should be "the/this."
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "but" is not shown in the English translation.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "who" is not the common word usually translated as "who."
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "was hired" doesn't exist in the source.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "the same" is not the common word usually translated as "the same"
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "I gave" doesn't exist in the source.

Front Page Date: 

May 18 2021