Matthew 24:45 Who then is a faithful and wise servant,

KJV Verse: 

Mat 24:45 Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?​

Greek Verse: 

Literal Alternative: 

Anyone, because of this [readiness], is the trustworthy slave, also showing a presence of mind, this one whom the master has put down against his the slaves of his household for the giving them nourishment in the right measure on time.

Interesting and Hidden Aspects: 

All the common translations sound a lot like the one from KJV, but they drain the original of all its original intensity. This verse is much more consistent with everything else in this chapter than it appears in translation. Hidden here is the idea that this a trusted slave standing against his fellow slave to control when they eat.

The word translated as "what" means primarily "anything" or "anyone", but in a question can mean "who" or "what."

The word translated as "then" is not the usual adverb meaning "at that time." It is a particle marking a sudden change ("straight away", "next") or explaining ("for this cause") or drawing attention to a consequence of an action ("namely" "so it is true that").

The verb "is" here is the common form of "to be" in Greek. It means to have a certain characteristic or remain in a certain condition.

The term translated as "faithful" is much closer to our general idea of having confidence or trust in people and especially their word rather than religious belief.

The Greek word translated as "and" is used as the conjunction "and", but it also is used to add emphasis ("also"). It appears after the word "servant" not before.

"Wise" is translated from a Greek word meaning "in one's right mind", "showing a presence of mind," and "prudent." This word appears after the word "servant".

The noun translated as "servant" means "slave." It is translated as "servant" to update the Bible. Today, the role is closer to "employee."

The word translated as "whom" is a demonstrative pronoun ("this" "that"), but it often acts as a pronoun, especially a connective pronoun introducing a dependent clause ("this one").

The Greek word translated as "Lord," means "having power", "being in authority" and "being in posession of." It also means "lord", "master of the house," and "head of the family."

The verb translated as "has made ruler" means to "to set down", "to be established", "to be instituted," and "to stand against."

The word translated as "over" means "against", "before", "by" or "on."

The word translated as "household" a"household of slaves", "servitude", and "slave population". It is not from the word for "household" that means all the people and property in the house.

An untranslated word is the Greek definite article, which usually precedes a noun but here comes before a version of the verb which makes it into a noun describing the action of the verb. In this case, "the granting" or "the giving". It is in the possessive form, which create and objective form, "for the giving". 

The verb translated as "to give" means "to give", "to grant", "to hand over", "appoint", "establish," and "to describe." It is almost always translated as some form of "give." Because it is an infinitive ("to give") preceded by an article, a better translation in English is "the giving" since we don't use articles with infinitives in English.

The word translated as "meat" means "meat" but more generally "nourishment" and "nurture". Christ uses it as a play on words, abstracting the giving meat is to the general idea of nurturing.

The word translated as "in" also means "within", "with," or "on."

"Due season" is from a noun that means "due measure", "proportion", "season", "opportunity", "time," "exact time", "critical time", and "profit." The sense is both right amount and the right time.

 

Greek Vocabulary: 

Τίς (pron sg masc/fem nom) "Who" is from tis which can mean "someone", "any one", "everyone", "they [indefinite]", "many a one", "whoever", "anyone", "anything", "some sort", "some sort of", "each", "any", "the individual", "such," and so on. In a question, it can mean "who", "why," or "what."

ἄρα "Then" is from ara, which means "there and then", "straightway", "then", "next", "mark you!", "for this cause", "so true is it that," and "namely."

ἐστὶν (verb 3rd sg pres ind act) "Is" is from eimi, which means "to be", "to exist", "to be the case," and "is possible." (The future form is esomai. The 3rd person present indicative is "esti.")

πιστὸς (adj sg masc nom) "Faithful" is from pistis, which means "confidence", "assurance", "trustworthiness", "credit", "a trust," "that which give confidence," and, as a character trait, "faithfulness." However, it is also in this form (adj sg masc nom) in could also be pistos, which means "liquid", "liquid medicines", and "draughts."

δοῦλος (noun sg masc nom) "The servant" is from doulos, which means a "slave," a "born bondsman," or "one made a slave."

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."

φρόνιμος (adj sg masc nom) "Wise" is from phronimos, which means "in one's right mind", "showing presence of mind," and "prudent." In Hebrew, the source word is arum, which means "crafty", "shrewd," and "sensible."

ὃν (pron sg masc acc) "Whom" is from hos, which means "this", "that", "he", "she", "which", "what", "who", "whosoever", "where", "for which reason," and many similar meanings.

κατέστησεν (verb 3rd sg aor ind act) "Has made ruler" is from kathistemi which means "to set down", "to bring down", "to bring into a certain state", "to make", "to be established", "to be instituted," and "to stand against."

κύριος (noun sg masc nom) "Lord" is from kyrios, which means "having power", "being in authority" and "being in possession of." It also means "lord", "master of the house," and "head of the family."

ἐπὶ "Over" is from epi. which means "on", "upon", "at", "by", "before", "across," and "against."

τῆς οἰκετείας [uncommon](noun sg fem gen) "Household" is from oketeia, which means "household of slaves", "servitude", and "slave population".

αὐτοῦ (adj sg masc gen) "His" 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."

τοῦ (article sg masc gen) Untranslated is the Greek definite article, which usually precedes a noun and, without a noun, takes the meaning of "the one" or, in the plural, "the ones." Here it is separated from its noun by a conjunction.

δοῦναι (verb aor inf act) "To give" is from didomi, which means "to give", "to grant", "to hand over", "appoint", "establish," and "to describe."

αὐτοῖς (adj pl masc dat) "His" 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."

τὴν τροφὴν (noun sg fem acc) "Meat" is from trophe, which means "nourishment", "food", "that which provides sustenance", "provisions", "nurture", "rearing," and "education."

ἐν "In" is from en, which means "in", "on", "at", "by", "among", "within", "surrounded by", "in one's hands", "in one's power," and "with". --

καιρῷ; (noun sg masc dat) "Due season" is from kairos, which means "due measure", "proportion", "fitness", "exact time", "season", "opportunity", "time", "critical times", "advantage," and "profit."

Wordplay: 

The word translated as "has made ruler" literally means "put down" and can mean "to stand against". The word translated as "over" actually means "against" so the sense is not only that he was put over them, but against them. 

The word translated as "meat" means "meat" but more generally "nourishment" and "nurture". Christ uses it as a play on words, abstracting the giving meat is to the general idea of nurturing.

The Spoken Version: 

"Who," he said. "Because of this."

He shook one of his followers as if waking him up.

"Is the trustworthy servant, also one with a presence of mind?" he continued, flatteringly, indicating the follower who he had 'awoken'. "This one!"

He helped that follower stand up and stood him in front of the group.

"Who the master has put down against all his servants," he said, first indicating the standing follower and then the rese.

"For the purpose of giving them meat," he continued, taking up a bowl and offered it to the seated followers.

Then he stopped.

"But only the right amount at the right time," he explained.

Related Verses: 

Sep 10 2016