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Fear God, Not Man

26 “Do[a] not be afraid of them, for nothing is hidden[b] that will not be revealed,[c] and nothing is secret that will not be made known. 27 What I say to you in the dark, tell in the light, and what is whispered in your ear,[d] proclaim from the housetops.[e] 28 Do[f] not be afraid of those who kill the body[g] but cannot kill the soul. Instead, fear the one who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.[h]

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  1. Matthew 10:26 tn Grk “Therefore do not.” Here οὖν (oun) has not been translated.
  2. Matthew 10:26 tn Or “concealed.”
  3. Matthew 10:26 tn The passive voice here and with the next verb is probably used for rhetorical effect. Although it is common to understand such usage, particularly in the gospels, as examples of the so-called “divine passive” where God is the unstated performer of the action, according to Wallace (ExSyn 438) this category is The passive verbs revealed and made known suggest the revelation comes from God. The text is both a warning about bad things being revealed and an encouragement that good things will be made known.
  4. Matthew 10:27 tn Grk “what you hear in the ear,” an idiom meaning “say someth. into someone’s ear, i.e., secretly or in confidence, whisper” (BDAG 739 s.v. οὖς 1).
  5. Matthew 10:27 tn The expression “proclaim from the housetops” is an idiom for proclaiming something publicly (L&N 7.51; BDAG 266 s.v. δῶμα). Roofs of many first century Jewish houses in Judea and Galilee were flat and had access either from outside or from within the house. Something shouted from atop a house would be heard by everyone in the street below.
  6. Matthew 10:28 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated.
  7. Matthew 10:28 sn A similar exhortation is found in 4 Macc 13:14-15, reflecting the view of Judaism in the intertestamental period. The statement here assumes there is more to a person than a body. As J. Nolland states, “Fear of God is to displace fear of death-dealing persecutors. The stakes are higher with God” (Matthew [NIGTC], 436).
  8. Matthew 10:28 sn While destroy is sometimes taken to mean annihilation, it does not necessarily have to imply that here (“Of eternal death… Mt 10:28, ” BDAG 116 s.v. ἀπόλλυμι 1.a.α). There are some Jewish intertestamental texts that appear to reflect a belief in everlasting punishment for the wicked (Jdt 16:17; 1QS 2:8) as well as Rev 14:11 in the NT. See also the note on the word hell in 5:22.