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Matthew 13:11

Context
13:11 He replied, 1  “You have been given 2  the opportunity to know 3  the secrets 4  of the kingdom of heaven, but they have not.

Matthew 13:31

Context
The Parable of the Mustard Seed

13:31 He gave 5  them another parable: 6  “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed 7  that a man took and sowed in his field.

Matthew 13:33

Context
The Parable of the Yeast

13:33 He told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed with 8  three measures 9  of flour until all the dough had risen.” 10 

1 tn Grk “And answering, he said to them.” This construction is somewhat redundant in English and has been simplified in the translation. Here δέ (de) has not been translated.

2 tn This is an example of a “divine passive,” with God understood to be the source of the revelation (see ExSyn 437-38).

3 tn Grk “to you it has been given to know.” The dative pronoun occurs first, in emphatic position in the Greek text, although this position is awkward in contemporary English.

4 tn Grk “the mysteries.”

sn The key term secrets (μυστήριον, musthrion) can mean either (1) a new revelation or (2) a revealing interpretation of existing revelation as in Dan 2:17-23, 27-30. Jesus seems to be explaining how current events develop old promises, since the NT consistently links the events of Jesus’ ministry and message with old promises (Rom 1:1-4; Heb 1:1-2). The traditional translation of this word, “mystery,” is misleading to the modern English reader because it suggests a secret which people have tried to uncover but which they have failed to understand (L&N 28.77).

5 tn Grk “put before.”

6 tn Grk “He set before them another parable, saying.” The participle λέγων (legwn) is redundant and has not been translated.

7 sn The mustard seed was noted for its tiny size.

8 tn Grk “hid in.”

9 sn This measure was a saton, the Greek name for the Hebrew term “seah.” Three of these was a very large quantity of flour, since a saton is a little over 16 pounds (7 kg) of dry measure (or 13.13 liters). So this was over 47 lbs (21 kg) of flour total, enough to feed over a hundred people.

10 tn Grk “it was all leavened.”

sn The parable of the yeast and the dough teaches that the kingdom of God will start small but eventually grow to permeate everything. Jesus’ point was not to be deceived by its seemingly small start, the same point made in the parable of the mustard seed, which preceded this one.



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