13:1-9, 18-23

7. The gospel, 13:1-53

i] The parable of the sower


Jesus is teaching beside lake Galilee and as the crowd grows, he gets into a boat and begins speaking to the them in parables. First, Jesus recounts the parable of the sower, and later he explains its meaning.


People who hear the gospel respond to it in many different ways. Some reject it, others ignore it or forget it, but there are always those who believe it.


i] Context: In the 2nd. Discourse Matthew presents Jesus' teaching on mission, of the business of proclaiming the gospel in a hostile world. In the related 2nd. Narrative, covering chapters 11 and 12, the narratives serve as a paradigm for a disciple's life of mission. The narratives reveal the misunderstandings, opposition and outright hostility prompted by the gospel. Finally, in the sign of Jonah, we are reminded that the preached word is the only sign suitable for a world hostile to God. Christian mission is all about preaching the gospel, it's what identifies believers as Christ's family.

Now, in the 3rd. Discourse, chapter 13, Matthew introduces us to the gospel message itself. First, he presents us with a teaching parable from Jesus which explains the practical workings of the gospel / kingdom parables - the gospel prompts different responses. We are then given an insight as to why Jesus tends to present the gospel in the form of a riddle - for Israel, "an evil and adulterous generation", the gospel serves an act of judgment. Matthew then assembles a number of gospel presentations in the form of kingdom parables which can be used by the church as proclamation models.

Up to this point, we have only been given a summary statement of the gospel; "repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." Now, particularly in the parable of the Weeds, we learn more about the content of the message. The message proclaims the inauguration / realization of the kingdom: it is good news in that the promised blessings of the covenant are ours by grace through faith; it is bad news in that those who do not repent stand under the judgment of God. This discourse on the gospel presents in three parts:

a) The parable of the Sower and its explanation (addressed to the crowds), along with an inserted theological explanation on the hidden nature of kingdom parables (addressed to the disciples), 13:1-23.

b) The parable of the Weeds, Mustard Seed and Leaven (addressed to the crowds), 13:24-35.

c) The explanation of the parable of the Weeds, along with the parables of the Hidden Treasure, The Pearl of Great Price and the Drag Net (addressed to the disciples), 13:36-53.


ii] Structure: The parable of the Sower:

Setting, v1-2;

Introduction, v3:

The parable, 4-9:

the four types of soil.

The parable explained, v18-23:

"listen then to what the parable ... means."

the four soils explained.


The first three soil types are formed with what are virtually contrasting clauses joined by an adversative kai, with the fourth formed by a three part men ..... de construction. The explanation follows a similar overall format: the four soil types are introduced by pantoV, "anyone", followed by oJ de, "and the one who ...."


iii] Interpretation:

Parables: There are basically two types of parables: a) teaching parables, stories which serve to illustrate a particular truth, and b) kingdom parables, riddles which serve to present the gospel in a hidden form. Teaching parables can be short pithy little illustrations, or extended allegories. Although rejected by some modern commentators (eg. Jeremias, reacting to a history of allegorical interpretations of the parable of the Sower, esp. the three levels of harvest = three orders of believers) Jesus does at times employ allegory. In this teaching form various elements in the story are given meaning and together serve to teach a particular truth. Kingdom parables, on the other hand, are usually introduced with the formula: "the kingdom of God/heaven may be compared to the situation where ....." Kingdom parables are similes, not usually allegories; they simply announce that the kingdom is near at hand, cf. Dodd. See "Kingdom Parables", 13:24-30, 36-43.


The classification of the parable of the sower / seeds / soils: When we come to classifying the parable of the sower, confusion reigns. At first glance it looks like a kingdom parable, a gospel riddle, but without the introductory formula. Yet, when it comes to the explanation of the parable, Jesus treats it as a teaching parable, an illustration instructive of truth. Although it is often assumed that the explanation of the parable was only for the disciples, it is more than likely that Jesus explained the parable to the gathered crowd as well. Mark does imply that Jesus explained its meaning in secret, but it was to "those who were around him, along with the twelve." Both Matthew and Luke have the crowd present for the explanation. Note how in v24 the autoiV "them" is obviously the crowd. So, the Parable of the Sower is a teaching parable, but only as long as you get to hear the explanation.

It should be noted that quite a few commentators take the view that the interpretation provided in v18-23 is not from Jesus, but "is the work of a Christian expositor of the apostolic age", Beare. Where this view is held, the parable, in its original setting, is taken to be climactic - the abundant harvest is at hand = the kingdom of God is at hand, ie., a kingdom parable. See D&A for a contra argument.


The meaning of the parable of the Sower: Suggestions are as follows:

• The parable explains that the proclamation of the gospel will produce a triumphant eschatological harvest, Jeremias, Hill (even against great difficulties). This climactic interpretation assumes that the parable is a kingdom parable and that the provided interpretation was a construct of the ancient church;

• The parable concerns rejection and judgment of unbelief within the frame of remnant theology, cf. Ellis, Luke;

• The parable explains the way in which people respond to the gospel, Morris, Carson;

• The parable identifies the need to hear the gospel aright, ie., it concerns "hearing the message", France, so also D&A, cf. v19, 20, 22, 23.

The fourth option certainly has much going for it. The explanation of the parable, v18-23, identifies the right-hearing of ton logon thV basileiaV, "the word of the kingdom", v19 (= the gospel / kingdom parables), repeated as ton logon, "the word" in v20, 22, 23, as the central message of the parable. Thus the parable warns of the need to hear the gospel aright; it warns of the need for a right-hearing of kingdom parables (in that sense it is a "parable about [kingdom] parables", Gundry). This hearing is probably not a hearing "received fully and without reservation", producing "unqualified, constant, and abundantly fruitful discipleship", Hagner. A discipleship (legalistic-pietistic) interpretation has dominated the history of interpretation from the ancient church till today, but the hearing is more likely related to a repentance / faith response to the gospel. In the face of the gospel "the person who has ears to hear should use them", Phillips, v9.

Yet, the third option is also worth considering. The parable and its explanation simply illustrates the way people respond to the gospel, and as such provides a literary vehicle within which the purpose of kingdom parables / gospel riddles can be explained, cf. 13:10-17.


iv] Exposition: A simple exposition of this passage may be found in the linked pew-level Sermon Notes .

Text - 13:1

The parable of the four soils: i] The setting , v1-2. Opposition to Jesus was growing, even to the extent of the religious authorities plotting to kill him. So Jesus is on the move and now finds himself beside lake Galilee. With the crowd pressing in, Jesus uses a boat as a pulpit. As usual, the teacher sits and the students stand

en th/ hJmera/ (a) "that same day" - on [that] the day. Temporal use of the preposition en, introducing a temporal clause; "at that time", Torrey.

exelqwn (exercomai) aor. part. "went out" - [jesus] having gone out. Attendant circumstance participle expressing action accompanying the verb "he sat"; "at about the same time, Jesus left the house and sat on the beach", Peterson. It is interesting to note that Matthew uses the same verb for the action undertaken by the sower, v3; he also "went out." Is he seeking to align Jesus with the sower?

thV oikiaV (a) gen. "of the house" - The genitive is best treated as ablative, expressing source / origin, "from the house."

para + acc. "by" - [he sat] beside. Spacial; "beside".

thn qalassan (a) "the lake" - the lake, sea. "Lake Galilee".


ocloi polloi "large crowds" - many crowds. Nominative subject of the verb "to gather together." "Crowds of people."

sunhcqhsan (sunagw) aor. pas. "gathered" - gathered together. Jesus was obviously crushed by the crowd and this prompted his move into a boat. The boat also served as a good pulpit.

proV + acc. "around [him]" - to [him]. Spacial, expressing movement toward.

wJste + inf. "that [he got into a boat and sat in it]" - so that [having embarked into a boat to sit down]. This construction introduces a consecutive clause expressing result; "with the result that, [having embarked / got into the boat], he sat down." The infinitive "to sit down" takes an accusative subject auton, "he", with the participle embanta, "having embarked", in concord with the accusative subject of the infinitive. The participle "having embarked" is attendant circumstance, expressing action accompanying the verbal aspect of the infinitive; "so that he got into a boat and sat down", ESV.

kai "while" - and [the all = entire crowd along the shore]. Coordinative; "and the whole crowd stood on the beach", RSV.

eisthkei (iJsthmi) pluperf. "stood" - had taken a stand. Taking an imperfect force, "was standing." The cultural teaching stance of the time is adopted; the teacher sits and the students stand.

epi + acc. "on [the shore]" - Local, expressing space.


ii] Introduction, v3. Jesus is no longer preaching the gospel openly, but rather in the form of quirky stories, stories similar to Old Testament marsals, riddles. These parables usually begin with the phrase "the kingdom of heaven is like ...." Their sole purpose is to announce the coming of God's eternal reign; they reveal the gospel, the good/bad news of God's coming kingdom. The seeker, of course, grasps the gospel message, but the rest hear strange stories about mustard seeds and the like. Before presenting a selection Jesus' kingdom parables, Matthew records his illustrative story about the different ways people respond to the gospel / kingdom parables.

autoiV "[he told] them" - [and he said] to them. Dative of indirect object.

polla "many things" - Is the sense "many stories"?

en + dat. "in" - Instrumental, expressing means; "by means of parables."

parabolaiV (h) dat. "parables" - proverbs, poems, parables. Here of a story, or descriptive proverb, which points to another meaning beyond its face value. As already noted, the word can be used of illustrations (teaching parables), but is also used of gospel riddles (kingdom parables) which begin with the phrase "the kingdom of heaven may be compared to ...." The synoptic gospels have Jesus initially preaching the news of the coming kingdom openly in much the same form as John the Baptist, but as rejection and opposition sets in, cf. ch. 11-12, Jesus begins to present the news of the immediacy of the coming kingdom in the form of riddles. This unclear revelation of the kingdom serves to enact the judgment of God on a stiff-necked people, cf. v10-17. The story of the sower reveals the various responses prompted by these riddles and so warns the hearer that the hidden message of the riddle does not always bear the fruit of salvation, so "let anyone with ears listen!"

legwn (legw) pres. part. "saying" - The participle my be treated as adverbial, modal, expressing manner, or attendant circumstance / redundant. .

oJ speirwn (speirw) pres. part. "a farmer" - the one sowing [went out]. The participle serves as a substantive.

tou speirein (speirw) "to sow his seed" - to sow. The construction, the genitive articular infinitive, usually introduces a purpose clause; "in order to sow".


iii] The parable of the Sower / Four Soils, v4-9. The story concerns seed sown in a field and how different types of soils affect the final harvest.

en tw/ + inf. "as [he was scattering the seed]" - This construction, the preposition en with the dative articular infinitive, introduces a temporal clause, contemporaneous time; "while he was sowing". As usual the subject of the infinitive, auton, "he", is in the accusative case.

a} pl. pro. "some" - which = some seeds. The demonstrative pronoun is used as a relative pronoun, so Zerwick, nominative subject of the verb "to fall."

men .... de ... "-" - Establishing an adversative comparative construction covering v4-8. The contrasting de is picked up in v5, 7 and 8.; "some seeds fell ....... but other seeds fell ...."

para + gen. "along" - by, beside [the road]. It fell on the compacted ground beside the path.

elqonta (ercomai) aor. part. "came" - [and] having come [the birds devoured them]. Attendant circumstance participle expressing action accompanying the main verb "ate"; "the birds came and ate."


de "-" - but/and. Transitional, picking up the contrast commenced in v4; "but other seeds fell .."

a[lla adj. "some" - others = other seeds. Nominative subject of the verb "to fall."

epi + acc. "on" - [fell] upon, on, over. Spacial.

ta petrwdh (hV ou) "rocky places" - rocky ground. The description is of a shelf of rock covered by a thin layer of soil. "The seed did not have enough soil to grow in", TH.

o{pou "where" - where [it does not have much soil and immediately]. Locative use of the conjunction, expressing position.

exaneteilen (exanatellw) aor. "it sprang up" - "The seed sprouted".

euqewV adv. "quickly" - immediately. Temporal adverb; "Quickly", as NIV.

dia to + inf. "because [the soil was shallow]" - because of, on account of [the soil did not have depth]. This construction, the preposition dia with the accusative articular infinitive, introduces a causal clause, "because ...", as NIV. Shallow ground causes an early germination because, with rock so close to the surface it warms up in Spring much more quickly than deeper ground that has been mulched / fertilized, but ...... Jesus again reveals his agricultural knowledge.


anateilantoV (anatellw) gen. aor. part. "when [the sun] came up" - [but the sun] having arisen, sprung up. A genitive absolute participial construction forming a temporal clause, as NIV.

ekaumatisqh (kaumatizw) aor. pas. "the plants were scorched" - it was scorched, burnt up, dried out.

dia to + inf. "because [they had no root]" - because [it did not have a root it was withered]. A causal construction as v5.


a[lla de "other seed" - but others. Construction as v5.

epi + acc. "among [thorns]" - [fell] upon, on, up to, against [the thorns, and grew up the thorns and]. Spacial again as v5, but obviously "among thorn-bushes", Barclay.

epnixan (pnigw) aor. "choked" - In the sense of made it impossible for the seedlings to develop.


a[lla de "still other [seed]" - but others. See v5.

thn ghn thn kalhn "good soil" - [fell upon] the good earth. "Good ground", CEV, possibly "rich soil", NEB.

edidou (didwmi) imperf. "it produced" - [and] they were giving = produced, yielded [fruit]. The imperfect is durative; the plant kept on producing.

o} men ...... o} de .....o} de ...... "-" - the one [one hundred] the other [sixty] the other [thirty]. An adversative comparative construction; "some on the one hand .... some on the other hand ..... and still some other .....", Wuest. Note how Mark adopts a climactic order although there is no significance in this, cf. Taylor, Mark. The reference to three harvests probably serves to balance the three wasted sowings, although again without any significance. It is sometimes argued that there is significance in the size of the harvest, particularly by those who view the parable as climactic, ie., the excessive bounty of the harvest has eschatological overtones. Against this it can be shown that "seed in Syria could yield a hundredfold", Davies & Allison. As already noted, the message of the story is simple and needs little explanation: "Good seed going into good ground bears a good crop [so pay attention, v9]", Morris.


oJ ecwn (ecw) pres. part. "he who has [hears]" - the one having [ears]. The participle serves as a substantive.

akouetw (akouw) pres. imp. "let him hear" - let that one hear. Emphatic by position. The present tense may give a durative aspect, eg., "pay attention", although speaking, hearing, reading, ... is by nature durative.


iv] Jesus spells out the meaning of the illustration to underline the necessity of hearing aright, 18-23. The pericope recorded in v10-17 serves to explain the reason behind the ongoing failure of the seed / word necessitating the proclamation of the gospel in the form of a riddle / a kingdom parable. As noted above, the parable of the Sower simply warns the crowd to take care how they hear Jesus' message / gospel, a message now in the form of parables.

a) "listen then to what the parable of the sower means."

uJJmeiV "-" - you. Emphatic use of the pronoun by use and position, nominative subject of the verb "to hear"; "In light of the great privilege extended to you", Carson. The subject is undefined, ie., either the crowd, or the disciples; see above.

oun "[Listen] then" - therefore. Usually treated as inferential, drawing a logical conclusion, although possibly transitional / resumptive, and therefore not translated..

thn parabolhn (h) "what the parable [of the sower] means" - [listen to] the parable. Elliptical = "take note of the meaning of the parable."

tou speirantoV (speirw) gen. aor. part. "of the sower" - of the one having sowed. The participle serves as a substantive; "the man who was described in the parable as sowing", McNeile. The genitive is usually treated as verbal, objective, "the parable about / concerning the sower."


b) The parable explained, v19-23. The story of the Four Soils, describing the way different soils respond to sown seed, represents four different ways people respond to the preaching of the gospel. Craig Keener nicely summarizes the story's message in his commentary on Matthew: "In some cases, the word goes in one ear and out the other. Such neglect is the devil's work; Some embrace the gospel excitedly, but tests ultimately prove the shallowness of their commitment; Some embrace the gospel, but gradually other interests - wealth, security, family and the like - choke it out of first place; But some dare to believe the gospel rather than the values they see lived out around them." As Jesus says in v9, "Are you listening to this? Really listening?", Eugene Peterson.

akouontoV (akouw) gen. pres. part. "when [anyone] hears" - [anyone] hearing. The genitive absolute participial construction forms a temporal clause, as NIV.

pantoV gen. adj. "anyone" - all, every. Here the adjective serves as a substantive; "any one", Robertson.

thV basileiaV (a) "[the message] about the kingdom" - [the word] of the kingdom. The genitive is usually treated as adjectival, verbal, objective, as NIV, but possibly epexegetic, of definition; "the preaching of the kingdom", Davies & Allison.

mh sunientoV (sunihmi) gen. pres. part. "does not understand it" - [and] not understanding. Continuing the genitive absolute construction, forming a temporal clause; "when anyone hears and does not understand." "Not understanding" in the sense of failing to address the spiritual truths contained in the gospel, rather than not being able to logically comprehend those truths, ie., the problem is the "unreceptive attitude of the hearers rather than the inadequacy in the communication of the message itself", Hagner. "Some people hear the message about the kingdom; but like hardened paths, they do not let the truth penetrate", Carson. "Does not take it to heart."

oJ ponhroV (oV) "the evil one [comes]" - Nominative subject of the verb "to come." A consequential result seems the likely sense although unstated; then cometh the wicked one", AV.

arpazei (arpazw) pres. "snatches away" - [and] seizes, carries off, plunders, robs. Snatches away the word? McNeile suggests that the evil one snatches away "the living results of [the word]", but it is more likely that he snatches away the spiritual truth contained in the message. Having been rejected, the ideas are subsumed into the business of life and thus "the man loses his opportunity", Filson. "The evil one comes along, carrying off what was sown", Cassirer.

to esparmenon (speirw) perf. mid/pas. part. "what was sown" - the thing having been sown. The participle serves as a substantive.

en + dat. "in [his heart]" - in [the heart of him]. Local, expressing space, metaphorical. The heart, being the seat of reason for a Jew, further indicates that the failure to "understand" the message comes down to a failure to address its spiritual truths. That the message is sown in a person's heart does not imply that they had made a saving response of faith, a response which was quickly snatched away by the Devil.

ou|toV estin oJ para thn oJdon spareiV "this is the seed sown along the path" - this is who / what / which being sown along / beside the path. The sense of this participial clause is unclear. The main difficulty concerns the identity of ou|toV, "this / this one". Given that the pronoun is masculine singular it is usually taken to represent "the individual who hears the word of the kingdom", Luz. Yet, in what sense is this person being sown along the path? It is the seed which is sown. The participle spareiV is passive so possibly the sense is "this is the one who receives the seed along the edge of the path", JB. "The person was sown in the sense that he received the seed as though he were soil", Gundry. Yet, it seems likely that what we have here is "a short-hand reminder of the appropriate scene in the story", France. This being the case, the clause is somewhat elliptical: "This (ou|toV masc. dem. pro. - this / this one - ie., the situation where a person hears the gospel but fails to respond to it and soon forgets what he even heard) is like (estin - ie., is like / represents the illustration in the parable) the seed that was sown (oJ .... spareiV [speirw] aor. pas part. substantive -the one having been sown) along the edge of the path (para + acc. - beside)." Note that masculine "seed", ie., sporoV, is often used figuratively of a person's descendants. "This is what is represented by the seed sown by the roadside", Cassirer.


de "-" - but/and. Transitional, indicating a step in the discourse, "then again"; "as for what was sown on the rocky ground", ESV..

oJ .... spareiV (speirw) aor. pas. part. "the one who receives the seed" - the one having been sown [upon the rocky places]. The participle serves as a substantive. The elliptical nature (short-talk / semantic density!) of the passage continues, so "With regard to the illustration in the parable concerning the seed that was sown upon rocky ground." "As for the seed sown on rocky ground", Cassirer.

ou|toV estin "is / refers" - this is. As above; "this (the illustration where seed falls on rocky ground) is like / may be compared to / represents the situation where [a person hears the word of God and immediately receives it with joy]." "Represents", Barclay, "It signifies the person who, on hearing the word, immediately gives it a joyful welcome", Cassirer.

oJ .... akouwn (akouw) pres. part. "the man who hears" - the one hearing, listening to. The participle serves as a substantive.

lambanwn (lambanw) pres. part. "receives [it]" - receiving. Attendant circumstance participle expressing action accompanying the verbal aspect of the participle "hearing"; "hears the word and accepts it at once with enthusiasm", Moffatt.

meta + acc. "with [joy]" - Here adverbial; "receives it with joy" = "joyfully."


de "but since" - but, and [he has no root]. Here adversative, as NIV. The NIV opts for a causal clause, and this certainly makes sense, although it is not implied by the Gk., so simply "but having no root", Torrey.

en + dat. "in" - Local, expressing space, metaphorical.

eJautw/ "-" - itself / himself. The pronoun may refer back to what was sown (masc.), or the one who hears (masc.), either way the drift back to the illustration is unhelpful, so "Because it (the message of the kingdom / gospel) does not sink deep into them", TEV ("them" for inclusive language).

alla "-" - but. The strong adversative, brought out by the NIV through a causal clause, stands within a counterpoint construction; ouk ..... alla, "not ...... but ....."

proskairoV adj. "[he] lasts only a short time" - [he is] temporary. Predicate adjective. "Is (they are) at the mercy of the moment", Barclay.

genomenhV (ginomai) gen. aor. part. "when [trouble or persecution] comes" - [but, and] coming [tribulation or persecution]. The participle serves within a genitive absolute construction forming a temporal clause, as NIV.

dia + acc. "because of [the word]" - because of, on account of [the word]. Causal.

skandalizetai (skandalizw) pres. pas. "he [quickly] falls away" - [immediately] he is offended / falls into a trap, ensnared = is tempted, causes to sin / stumbles = gives up believing, ceases to believe. "He gives up his faith at once", Phillips.


de "-" - but/and. Transitional Again we have the same elliptical clause, so "then again, with regard to the illustration concerning the seed that was sown into / among the thorns." "The picture of the seed that was sown among the thorn-bushes represents the man who ....", Barclay.

oJ .... spareiV (speirw) aor. pas. part. "the seed falling" - the seed being sown. The participle serves as a substantive.

eiV + acc. "among [the thorns]" - into [the thorn bushes]. Local, expressing space.

ou|toV estin "refers to" - this is. As v20.

tou aiwnoV (wn wnoV) gen. "[the worries] of this life" - [the one listening to the word and the anxiety, care] of the age. The genitive is adjectival, attributive, limiting "anxiety", so "worldly anxiety". Note Zerwick suggests that a verbal genitive may be intended, either subjective, "[the worries] which preoccupy men in the world", or objective, "[the worries] for things of the world."

tou ploutou (oV) gen. "[deceitfulness] of riches" - [and the deceit] of wealth. "Illusions", Phillips; "delights", Berkeley. The genitive may be treated as verbal, objective, or ablative, of separation, "the seduction that comes from wealth", Cassirer. "They allow themselves to be led astray by riches", TH.

sumpnigei (sumpnigw) pres. "choke [it]" - choke together [the word]. "Smothers the truth of the gospel."

ginetai (ginomai) pres. "making it [unfruitful]" - [and] it/he becomes [unfruitful, barren]. The subject is usually regarded as ton logon, "the word", so the word is choked and therefore does not produce a renewed spiritual life in the person; "the anxieties of the age and the pleasures of wealth chokes the message and it becomes unfruitful", TNT. Yet, it is possible that the subject is "the one hearing". The worries of life and the delusions of wealth have the effect of stifling the word/gospel, such that the person does not bear the fruit of salvation; "he becomes unfruitful", Rieu.


de "but" - but/and. Transitional, indicating a step in the discourse to a contrast, as NIV; "as for what was sown on good soil", ESV.

epi + acc. "on" - [the seed] on, upon. Spacial; "the picture of the seed which was sown on the good ground represents the man who hears .....", Barclay.

thn kalhn adj. "good [soil]" - the good, beautiful [soil being sown]. The adjective is attributive limiting by describing the "soil".

oJ .... sunieiV (unihmi) pres. part. "[hears the word and] understands" - [this one is] the one [hearing and] understanding. As for akouwn, "hearing", the participle serves as a substantive. The sense of "understands" as in v19, ie., the illustration in the parable where seed is sown on good ground and grows to produce fruit represents the situation where a person hears the gospel, "grasps the message" (Hendriksen) and so is converted by it. Note, Mark has "and they accept [the word]." "Grasps it", Knox; "takes in the news", Peterson.

o}V "he" - who. Nominative subject of the verb "to bear fruit" and "to do" = produce. Interesting use of these two verbs together. Is the idea one of bearing fruit in the sense of believing, and of doing in the sense of obeying? I'm not convinced, but see Olmstead. A singular idea seems more likely, as translated by the NIV, "this is the one who produces a crop", see below.

dh "-" - indeed, now / therefore, then. Emphatic, "he it is / he indeed / this is he who", and possibly also drawing out a logical conclusion, "he therefore", "obviously", Zerwick.

karpoforei (karpoforew) pres. "produces a crop" - bears fruit. As already noted, the various levels of fruitfulness has tended to promote an interpretation where the hearing and understanding of the gospel involves putting it into practice and thus bearing the fruit of love, joy, peace, longsuffering, etc., eg., "the fruit is probably to be understood as the pattern of conduct described in the Sermon on the Mount", Hagner. Yet, surely the image is of the fruit of salvation; those who take in the message of the kingdom bear a rich harvest of salvation, ie., they are converted.

o} men .... o} de .... o} de ..... "he [produces a crop ... ] or [...... ]" - [and the one produces] on the one hand [a hundred], but then on the other hand [sixty], but also on the other hand [thirty]. Adversative comparative construction.


Matthew Introduction



[Pumpkin Cottage]