Matthew 24:11 And many false prophets shall rise,

Spoken to: 

Apostles

Context: 

A long section about "the end of the world" or, more precisely, "the culmination of an era."

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

And great fake enlightens will be raised up and they might also lead many astray.

My Takeaway: 

Fakes don't arise on their own, people create them.

KJV : 

Matthew 24:11 And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.

NIV : 

Matthew 24:11 and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people.

What is Lost in Translation: 

This verse is a play on the word "many" and its different meanings. This word is used throughout this chapter, usually in the sense of "many." It begins and ends this verse. The Greek word means " many in number, great in power or worth, and large in size. However, Jesus usually uses another word to mean "great" and this word to mean "many." However, before "false prophets" it could mean either "great" or "many" but the following verb, "raised up" re-emphasizes the sense of power. Using the phrase "many great" seems to work for the play on words here.We saw the word translated as "rise" and "appear" was last seen in Matthew 24:7, with nations rising against each other.

This last half of the verse seems essentially the same as Matthew 24:5, just a few verses ago. However, in that verse, those who proclaimed, "I am the Christ" were the deceivers. In both verses, the "deceive" is translated to look like the future tense, but the verb indicates a possibility, something that "might" happen not "will."

Related Verses: 

Greek Vocabulary: 

καὶ [1089 verses](conj/adv) "And" is from kai, which is the conjunction joining phrases and clauses, "and," or "also." 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."

πολλοὶ [61 verses] (adj pl masc nom) "Many" is from polus, which means "many (in number)," "great (in size or power or worth)," and "large (of space)." As an adverb, it means "far," "very much," "a great way," and "long."

ψευδοπροφῆται [5 verses] (noun pl masc nom) "False prophets" is from pseudoprophētēs which means a "false" or "lying" prophet, which means "one who speaks for a god and interprets his will," "interpreter," "keepers of the oracle," "the highest level of priesthood in Egypt," and "herald."

ἐγερθήσονται [41 verses](verb 3rd pl fut ind pass) "Shall rise" is egeiro, which means "to awaken," "to stir up," and "to rouse."

καὶ [1089 verses](conj/adv) "And" is from kai, which is the conjunction joining phrases and clauses, "and," or "also." 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."

πλανήσουσιν [12 verses](verb 3rd pl aor subj act ) "Deceive" is planao which means "to cause to wander," "to lead astray," "to mislead," "to wander," "to stray," and "to be misled."

πολλούς:  [61 verses] (adj pl masc nom) "Many" is from polus, which means "many (in number)," "great (in size or power or worth)," and "large (of space)." As an adverb, it means "far," "very much," "a great way," and "long." -- The word translated as "many" means many in number, great in power or worth, and large in size.

KJV Analysis: 

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

many  - -- The word translated as "many" means many in number, great in power or worth, and large in size.

false prophets  - The Greek word translated as "false prophets" is the word for "prophet" with the prefix meaning "fake" in front of it. The word for "prophet" means "one who speaks for God," "interpreter" and was the highest level of priesthood in Egypt. Christ uses it to refer not only to divine spokespeople but their books in the OT. However, it is from the verb that means "to shine before" so our phrase "enlightened" captures the sense of the word as heard in Greek.

shall -- This helping verb "shall" indicates that the verb is the future tense. Helping or auxiliary verbs are needed to translate the Greek verb forms into English.

rise,  - (WV) The word for "rise" means "rise" and "awaken" and is the same word Jesus uses to describe God raising the dead. The form is passive future, "will be raised up."

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

shall -- (CW) This helping verb "shall" does not indicate the future tense, but that the verb describes a possibility, the subjunctive voice. A "might" or "should" in English is more appropriate, but is assumed in an "if" or "when" clause. Helping verbs are not needed in Greek since the main verb carries this information in its form.

deceive  - "Deceive" is from a verb that means "to cause to wander," "to lead astray," "to mislead," "to wander," "to stray," and "to be misled." The form indicates something that "might" or "possibly happens. It is could be in the future tense, but its form is also tense indicating something that might happen at a point in time.

many. - "Many" is from a Greek word that means "many (in number)," "great (in size or power or worth)," and "large (of space)." Here, reversing the phrase "many great" to "great many" captures the wordplay involved. Also note that neither this use of the initial one have a "the" before them, so "a great many."

KJV Translation Issues: 

2
  • WV - Wrong Voice - The verb "rise" here is translated as active but it is passive.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "shall" does not mean the future tense.

NIV Analysis: 

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

many  - -- The word translated as "many" means many in number, great in power or worth, and large in size.

false prophets  - The Greek word translated as "false prophets" is the word for "prophet" with the prefix meaning "fake" in front of it. The word for "prophet" means "one who speaks for God," "interpreter" and was the highest level of priesthood in Egypt. Christ uses it to refer not only to divine spokespeople but their books in the OT. However, it is from the verb that means "to shine before" so our phrase "enlightened" captures the sense of the word as heard in Greek.

will -- This helping verb "shall" indicates that the verb is the future tense. Helping or auxiliary verbs are needed to translate the Greek verb forms into English.

rise,  - (WV) The word for "rise" means "rise" and "awaken" and is the same word Jesus uses to describe God raising the dead. The form is passive future, "will be raised up."

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

missing "might"  -- (MW) The untranslated word "might" indicates that the verb indicates a possibility. Helping or auxiliary verbs are needed to translate the Greek verb forms into English.

deceive  - "Deceive" is from a verb that means "to cause to wander," "to lead astray," "to mislead," "to wander," "to stray," and "to be misled." The form indicates something that "might" or "possibly happens. It is could be in the future tense, but its form is also tense indicating something that might happen at a point in time.

many. - "Many" is from a Greek word that means "many (in number)," "great (in size or power or worth)," and "large (of space)." Here, reversing the phrase "many great" to "great many" captures the wordplay involved. Also note that neither this use of the initial one have a "the" before them, so "a great many."

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

NIV Translation Issues: 

3
  • WV - Wrong Voice - The verb "rise" here is translated as active but it is passive.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "might" needed from the form of the verb is not shown in the English translation.
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "people" doesn't exist in the source.

Front Page Date: 

Sep 8 2021