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Matthew 12:38-40

Context
The Sign of Jonah

12:38 Then some of the experts in the law 1  along with some Pharisees 2  answered him, 3  “Teacher, we want to see a sign 4  from you.” 12:39 But he answered them, 5  “An evil and adulterous generation asks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. 12:40 For just as Jonah was in the belly of the huge fish 6  for three days and three nights, 7  so the Son of Man will be in the heart of the earth for three days and three nights.

1 tn Or “Then some of the scribes.” See the note on the phrase “experts in the law” in 2:4.

2 tn Grk “and Pharisees.” The word “some” before “Pharisees” has been supplied for clarification.

sn See the note on Pharisees in 3:7.

3 tn Grk “answered him, saying.” The participle λέγοντες (legontes) is redundant, but the syntax of the sentence was changed to conform to English style.

4 sn What exactly this sign would have been, given what Jesus was already doing, is not clear. But here is where the fence-sitters reside, refusing to commit to him.

5 tn Grk “But answering, he said to them.” This construction is somewhat redundant in English and has been simplified in the translation.

6 tn Grk “large sea creature.”

7 sn A quotation from Jonah 1:17.



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