Matthew 21:43 Therefore I tell you, The kingdom of God

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

Through this, I tell you, God's reign shall be lifted up from/by/after you, and given to the Gentiles who shall produce its fruits.

KJV : 

Mat 21:43 The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof.

Interesting and Hidden Aspects: 

This verse has a number of suprises. It is one of those verses that has multiple meanings based on the meaning of the verb translated as "removed" but they are lost in translation. The word for "nation" and "bringeth forth are usually translated very differently in most NT but here are translated closer to the actual meaning.

The "therefore" is not from the usual word translated as "thereof" but it is from two words. The first means "through," in the midst of," or "by (a cause)." The second means "from there", "this [thing]," or "that [thing]." So the phase means "through this," referring to the quote about the capstone (Mat 21:42)and the parable of the tenants (Mat 21:33).

The word translated as "I tell" is the most common word that means "to say," and "to speak," but it also means "to teach," which seems to be the way Christ uses it more frequently.

Notice that Christ uses the "kingdom of God" here, not "the kingdom of heaven," the God's rule and not the universal rule.

"Shall be taken" is from one of Christ's favorite "multiple meaning" words. It is a verb that means "to raise up", "elevate", "to bear", "to carry off", "to take and apply to any use," and "to cause to cease."Christ uses this verb to refer to what will happen to "the son of man," which can apply either to his being raised from the dead or lifted up on the cross.

The word translated as "from" means "from" in both location and when referring to a source ("by"). It also means "after" in time. All these meanings work here.

The verb translated as "given" means "to give", "to grant", "to hand over", "appoint", "establish," and "to describe." It is almost always translated as some form of "give."

"Nation" The word translated as "nation" is almost always translated as "gentiles" in the NT, but it doesn't mean or even foreigners. This is one of the rare situations where it is translated correctly. Its primary meaning is "a group of people living together," a nation, a tribe, or a cast of people. Later it came to mean "barbarous nations" similar to our idea of ethnic people. However, Christ uses it to refer to foriegn nations, especially those ruling Israel.

"Bring forth" is from a verb that primarily means "make" but it usually tranlated as "do" in the NT. In the sense of "make" it means "produce", "bring into existence", "bring about," and "cause." In the sense of "do," it means "to act" and "to be effective."

The word translated as "fruit" primary meaning is "fruit", "seed," or "offspring," but its secondary meaning is "returns," specifically, "profit," as we would say "fruit of our labors."

The word translated as "thereof" is the adjective that is normally translated as "his, hers, or its." The form here refers to the "kingdom."


The word translated as "shall be taken" means "to be raised up" and means removed in the sense of removing a burden. It also means to "exhalt" and "to bear."

Related Verses: 

Greek Vocabulary: 

διὰ "Therefore" is from dia (with touto below) which means "through", "in the midst of", "in a line (movement)", "throughout (time)", "by (causal)", "among," and "between."

τοῦτο "Therefore" is from touto, (with dia above) which means "from here", "from there", "this [thing]," or "that [thing]."

λέγω (1st sg pres ind act) "I tell" is from lego means "pick up", "choose for oneself", "pick out," and "count," "recount", "tell over", "say", "speak", "teach", "mean", "boast of", "tell of", "recite," "nominate," and "command."

ὑμῖν (pron 2nd pl dat) "To you" is from humin the plural form of su the pronoun of the second person, "you."

ὅτι "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." -- The word translated as "that" introduces a statement of fact or cause.

ἀρθήσεται "Shall be taken" is from airo, which means "to lift up", "to raise", "to raise up", "to exalt", "to lift and take away," and "to remove."

ἀφ᾽ "From" 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.

ὑμῶν (pron 2nd pl gen) "You" is from humon, the plural possessive form of su the pronoun of the second person, "you." -- The word translated as "your" is plural addressing a group of Jesus's listeners.

βασιλεία (noun pl neut nom) "The kingdom" is from basileia, which means "kingdom", "dominion", "hereditary monarchy", "kingly office," (passive) "being ruled by a king," and "reign." -- The word translated as "kingdom" can be the region, the reign, the castle or the authority of a ruler. Christ does not seem to use it to mean a physical region, so its translation as "reign" or "realm" seems more appropriate. This is especially true because the "reign" of a king means the execution of his will.

τοῦ θεοῦ (noun sg masc gen) "God" is from theos, which means "God," "divine," and "Deity."

καὶ "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."

δοθήσεται (verb 3rd sg fut ind pass) "Given" is from didomi, which means "to give", "to grant", "to hand over", "appoint", "establish," and "to describe."

ἔθνει (noun sg neut dat) "The gentiles" is from ethnos, which means "a number of people living together", "company", "body of men," "tribe", "a people", "nation," and (later) "foreign, barbarous nations."

ποιοῦντι (verb 3rd pl pres ind act) "Bringing forth" 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."

τοὺς καρποὺς (noun pl masc acc) ) "Fruit" is from karpos, which means "fruit", "the fruits of the earth", "seed", "offspring", "returns for profit," and "reward."

αὐτῆς. (adj sg fem gen) "Thereof" 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." -- The word translated as "him" is the Greek word commonly translated as pronouns in English, but it has a few shades of meaning our pronouns do not have. The word technically means "the same," and when used as a pronoun can mean "the true self" as opposed to appearances.