New International Version - UK
41 When two full years had passed, Pharaoh had a dream: he was standing by the Nile, 2 when out of the river there came up seven cows, sleek and fat, and they grazed among the reeds. 3 After them, seven other cows, ugly and gaunt, came up out of the Nile and stood beside those on the river-bank. 4 And the cows that were ugly and gaunt ate up the seven sleek, fat cows. Then Pharaoh woke up.
5 He fell asleep again and had a second dream: seven ears of corn, healthy and good, were growing on a single stalk. 6 After them, seven other ears of corn sprouted – thin and scorched by the east wind. 7 The thin ears of corn swallowed up the seven healthy, full ears. Then Pharaoh woke up; it had been a dream.
8 In the morning his mind was troubled, so he sent for all the magicians and wise men of Egypt. Pharaoh told them his dreams, but no one could interpret them for him.
9 Then the chief cupbearer said to Pharaoh, ‘Today I am reminded of my shortcomings. 10 Pharaoh was once angry with his servants, and he imprisoned me and the chief baker in the house of the captain of the guard. 11 Each of us had a dream the same night, and each dream had a meaning of its own. 12 Now a young Hebrew was there with us, a servant of the captain of the guard. We told him our dreams, and he interpreted them for us, giving each man the interpretation of his dream. 13 And things turned out exactly as he interpreted them to us: I was restored to my position, and the other man was impaled.’
14 So Pharaoh sent for Joseph, and he was quickly brought from the dungeon. When he had shaved and changed his clothes, he came before Pharaoh.
15 Pharaoh said to Joseph, ‘I had a dream, and no one can interpret it. But I have heard it said of you that when you hear a dream you can interpret it.’
16 ‘I cannot do it,’ Joseph replied to Pharaoh, ‘but God will give Pharaoh the answer he desires.’
17 Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, ‘In my dream I was standing on the bank of the Nile, 18 when out of the river there came up seven cows, fat and sleek, and they grazed among the reeds. 19 After them, seven other cows came up – scrawny and very ugly and lean. I had never seen such ugly cows in all the land of Egypt. 20 The lean, ugly cows ate up the seven fat cows that came up first. 21 But even after they ate them, no one could tell that they had done so; they looked just as ugly as before. Then I woke up.
22 ‘In my dream I saw seven ears of corn, full and good, growing on a single stalk. 23 After them, seven other ears sprouted – withered and thin and scorched by the east wind. 24 The thin ears of corn swallowed up the seven good ears. I told this to the magicians, but none of them could explain it to me.’
25 Then Joseph said to Pharaoh, ‘The dreams of Pharaoh are one and the same. God has revealed to Pharaoh what he is about to do. 26 The seven good cows are seven years, and the seven good ears of corn are seven years; it is one and the same dream. 27 The seven lean, ugly cows that came up afterwards are seven years, and so are the seven worthless ears of corn scorched by the east wind: they are seven years of famine.
28 ‘It is just as I said to Pharaoh: God has shown Pharaoh what he is about to do. 29 Seven years of great abundance are coming throughout the land of Egypt, 30 but seven years of famine will follow them. Then all the abundance in Egypt will be forgotten, and the famine will ravage the land. 31 The abundance in the land will not be remembered, because the famine that follows it will be so severe. 32 The reason the dream was given to Pharaoh in two forms is that the matter has been firmly decided by God, and God will do it soon.
33 ‘And now let Pharaoh look for a discerning and wise man and put him in charge of the land of Egypt. 34 Let Pharaoh appoint commissioners over the land to take a fifth of the harvest of Egypt during the seven years of abundance. 35 They should collect all the food of these good years that are coming and store up the grain under the authority of Pharaoh, to be kept in the cities for food. 36 This food should be held in reserve for the country, to be used during the seven years of famine that will come upon Egypt, so that the country may not be ruined by the famine.’
37 The plan seemed good to Pharaoh and to all his officials. 38 So Pharaoh asked them, ‘Can we find anyone like this man, one in whom is the spirit of God?’[a]
39 Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, ‘Since God has made all this known to you, there is no one so discerning and wise as you. 40 You shall be in charge of my palace, and all my people are to submit to your orders. Only with respect to the throne will I be greater than you.’
Joseph in charge of Egypt
41 So Pharaoh said to Joseph, ‘I hereby put you in charge of the whole land of Egypt.’ 42 Then Pharaoh took his signet ring from his finger and put it on Joseph’s finger. He dressed him in robes of fine linen and put a gold chain round his neck. 43 He made him ride in a chariot as his second-in-command,[b] and people shouted before him, ‘Make way[c]!’ Thus he put him in charge of the whole land of Egypt.
44 Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, ‘I am Pharaoh, but without your word no one will lift hand or foot in all Egypt.’ 45 Pharaoh gave Joseph the name Zaphenath-Paneah and gave him Asenath daughter of Potiphera, priest of On,[d] to be his wife. And Joseph went throughout the land of Egypt.
46 Joseph was thirty years old when he entered the service of Pharaoh king of Egypt. And Joseph went out from Pharaoh’s presence and travelled throughout Egypt. 47 During the seven years of abundance the land produced plentifully. 48 Joseph collected all the food produced in those seven years of abundance in Egypt and stored it in the cities. In each city he put the food grown in the fields surrounding it. 49 Joseph stored up huge quantities of grain, like the sand of the sea; it was so much that he stopped keeping records because it was beyond measure.
50 Before the years of famine came, two sons were born to Joseph by Asenath daughter of Potiphera, priest of On. 51 Joseph named his firstborn Manasseh[e] and said, ‘It is because God has made me forget all my trouble and all my father’s household.’ 52 The second son he named Ephraim[f] and said, ‘It is because God has made me fruitful in the land of my suffering.’
53 The seven years of abundance in Egypt came to an end, 54 and the seven years of famine began, just as Joseph had said. There was famine in all the other lands, but in the whole land of Egypt there was food. 55 When all Egypt began to feel the famine, the people cried to Pharaoh for food. Then Pharaoh told all the Egyptians, ‘Go to Joseph and do what he tells you.’
56 When the famine had spread over the whole country, Joseph opened all the storehouses and sold grain to the Egyptians, for the famine was severe throughout Egypt. 57 And all the world came to Egypt to buy grain from Joseph, because the famine was severe everywhere.
- Genesis 41:38 Or of the gods
- Genesis 41:43 Or in the chariot of his second-in-command; or in his second chariot
- Genesis 41:43 Or Bow down
- Genesis 41:45 That is, Heliopolis; also in verse 50
- Genesis 41:51 Manasseh sounds like and may be derived from the Hebrew for forget.
- Genesis 41:52 Ephraim sounds like the Hebrew for twice fruitful.
New English Translation
Joseph’s Rise to Power
41 At the end of two full years[a] Pharaoh had a dream.[b] As he was standing by the Nile, 2 seven fine-looking, fat cows were coming up out of the Nile,[c] and they grazed in the reeds. 3 Then seven bad-looking, thin cows were coming up after them from the Nile,[d] and they stood beside the other cows at the edge of the river.[e] 4 The bad-looking, thin cows ate the seven fine-looking, fat cows. Then Pharaoh woke up.
5 Then he fell asleep again and had a second dream: There were seven heads of grain growing[f] on one stalk, healthy[g] and good. 6 Then[h] seven heads of grain, thin and burned by the east wind, were sprouting up after them. 7 The thin heads swallowed up the seven healthy and full heads. Then Pharaoh woke up and realized it was a dream.[i]
8 In the morning he[j] was troubled, so he called for[k] all the diviner-priests[l] of Egypt and all its wise men. Pharaoh told them his dreams,[m] but no one could interpret[n] them for him.[o] 9 Then the chief cupbearer said to Pharaoh, “Today I recall my failures.[p] 10 Pharaoh was enraged with his servants, and he put me in prison in the house of the captain of the guards—me and the chief baker. 11 We each had a dream one night; each of us had a dream with its own meaning.[q] 12 Now a young man, a Hebrew, a servant[r] of the captain of the guards,[s] was with us there. We told him our dreams,[t] and he interpreted the meaning of each of our respective dreams for us.[u] 13 It happened just as he had said[v] to us—Pharaoh[w] restored me to my office, but he impaled the baker.”[x]
14 Then Pharaoh summoned[y] Joseph. So they brought him quickly out of the dungeon; he shaved himself, changed his clothes, and came before Pharaoh. 15 Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I had a dream,[z] and there is no one who can interpret[aa] it. But I have heard about you, that[ab] you can interpret dreams.”[ac] 16 Joseph replied to Pharaoh, “It is not within my power,[ad] but God will speak concerning[ae] the welfare of Pharaoh.”[af]
17 Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, “In my dream I was standing[ag] by the edge of the Nile. 18 Then seven fat and fine-looking cows were coming up out of the Nile, and they grazed in the reeds.[ah] 19 Then[ai] seven other cows came up after them; they were scrawny, very bad looking, and lean. I had never seen such bad-looking cows[aj] as these in all the land of Egypt! 20 The lean, bad-looking cows ate up the seven[ak] fat cows. 21 When they had eaten them,[al] no one would have known[am] that they had done so, for they were just as bad-looking as before. Then I woke up. 22 I also saw in my dream[an] seven heads of grain growing on one stalk, full and good. 23 Then[ao] seven heads of grain, withered and thin and burned with the east wind, were sprouting up after them. 24 The thin heads of grain swallowed up the seven good heads of grain. So I told all this[ap] to the diviner-priests, but no one could tell me its meaning.”[aq]
25 Then Joseph said to Pharaoh, “Both dreams of Pharaoh have the same meaning.[ar] God has revealed[as] to Pharaoh what he is about to do.[at] 26 The seven good cows represent seven years, and the seven good heads of grain represent seven years. Both dreams have the same meaning.[au] 27 The seven lean, bad-looking cows that came up after them represent seven years, as do the seven empty heads of grain burned with the east wind. They represent[av] seven years of famine. 28 This is just what I told[aw] Pharaoh: God has shown Pharaoh what he is about to do. 29 Seven years of great abundance are coming throughout the whole land of Egypt. 30 But seven years of famine will occur[ax] after them, and all the abundance will be forgotten in the land of Egypt. The famine will devastate[ay] the land. 31 The previous abundance of the land will not be remembered[az] because of the famine that follows, for the famine will be very severe.[ba] 32 The dream was repeated to Pharaoh[bb] because the matter has been decreed[bc] by God, and God will make it happen soon.[bd]
33 “So now Pharaoh should look[be] for a wise and discerning man[bf] and give him authority[bg] over all the land of Egypt. 34 Pharaoh should do[bh] this—he should appoint[bi] officials[bj] throughout the land to collect one-fifth of the produce of the land of Egypt[bk] during the seven years of abundance. 35 They should gather all the excess food[bl] during these good years that are coming. By Pharaoh’s authority[bm] they should store up grain so the cities will have food,[bn] and they should preserve it.[bo] 36 This food should be held in storage for the land in preparation for the seven years of famine that will occur throughout the land of Egypt. In this way the land will survive the famine.”[bp]
37 This advice made sense to Pharaoh and all his officials.[bq] 38 So Pharaoh asked his officials, “Can we find a man like Joseph,[br] one in whom the Spirit of God is present?”[bs] 39 So Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Because God has enabled you to know all this, there is no one as wise and discerning[bt] as you are! 40 You will oversee my household, and all my people will submit to your commands.[bu] Only I, the king, will be greater than you.[bv]
41 “See here,” Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I place[bw] you in authority over all the land of Egypt.”[bx] 42 Then Pharaoh took his signet ring from his own hand and put it on Joseph’s. He clothed him with fine linen[by] clothes and put a gold chain around his neck. 43 Pharaoh[bz] had him ride in the chariot used by his second-in-command,[ca] and they cried out before him, “Kneel down!”[cb] So he placed him over all the land of Egypt. 44 Pharaoh also said to Joseph, “I am Pharaoh, but without your permission[cc] no one[cd] will move his hand or his foot[ce] in all the land of Egypt.” 45 Pharaoh gave Joseph the name Zaphenath-Paneah.[cf] He also gave him Asenath[cg] daughter of Potiphera, priest of On,[ch] to be his wife. So Joseph took charge of[ci] all the land of Egypt.
46 Now Joseph was 30 years old[cj] when he began serving[ck] Pharaoh king of Egypt. Joseph was commissioned by[cl] Pharaoh and was in charge of[cm] all the land of Egypt. 47 During the seven years of abundance the land produced large, bountiful harvests.[cn] 48 Joseph[co] collected all the excess food[cp] in the land of Egypt during the seven years and stored it in the cities.[cq] In every city he put the food gathered from the fields around it. 49 Joseph stored up a vast amount of grain, like the sand of the sea,[cr] until he stopped measuring it because it was impossible to measure.
50 Two sons were born to Joseph before the famine came.[cs] Asenath daughter of Potiphera, priest of On, was their mother.[ct] 51 Joseph named the firstborn Manasseh,[cu] saying,[cv] “Certainly[cw] God has made me forget all my trouble and all my father’s house.” 52 He named the second child Ephraim,[cx] saying,[cy] “Certainly[cz] God has made me fruitful in the land of my suffering.”
53 The seven years of abundance in the land of Egypt came to an end. 54 Then the seven years of famine began,[da] just as Joseph had predicted. There was famine in all the other lands, but throughout the land of Egypt there was food. 55 When all the land of Egypt experienced the famine, the people cried out to Pharaoh for food. Pharaoh said to all the people of Egypt,[db] “Go to Joseph and do whatever he tells you.”
56 While the famine was over all the earth,[dc] Joseph opened the storehouses[dd] and sold grain to the Egyptians. The famine was severe throughout the land of Egypt. 57 People from every country[de] came to Joseph in Egypt to buy grain because the famine was severe throughout the earth.
- Genesis 41:1 tn Heb “two years, days.”
- Genesis 41:1 tn Heb “was dreaming.”
- Genesis 41:2 tn Heb “And look, he was standing by the Nile, and look, from the Nile were coming up seven cows, attractive of appearance and fat of flesh.” By the use of the particle הִנֵּה (hinneh, “look”), the narrator invites the audience to see the dream through Pharaoh’s eyes.
- Genesis 41:3 tn Heb “And look, seven other cows were coming up after them from the Nile, bad of appearance and thin of flesh.”
- Genesis 41:3 tn Heb “the Nile.” This has been replaced by “the river” in the translation for stylistic reasons.
- Genesis 41:5 tn Heb “coming up.”
- Genesis 41:5 tn Heb “fat.”
- Genesis 41:6 tn Heb “And look.”
- Genesis 41:7 tn Heb “And look, a dream.”sn Pharaoh’s two dreams, as explained in the following verses, pertained to the economy of Egypt. Because of the Nile River, the land of Egypt weathered all kinds of famines—there was usually grain in Egypt, and if there was grain and water the livestock would flourish. These two dreams, however, indicated that poverty would overtake plenty and that the blessing of the herd and the field would cease.
- Genesis 41:8 tn Heb “his spirit.”
- Genesis 41:8 tn Heb “he sent and called,” which indicates an official summons.
- Genesis 41:8 tn The Hebrew term חַרְטֹם (khartom) is an Egyptian loanword (hyr-tp) that describes a class of priests who were skilled in such interpretations.
- Genesis 41:8 tn The Hebrew text has the singular (though Smr reads the plural). If retained, the singular must be collective for the set of dreams. Note the plural pronoun “them,” referring to the dreams, in the next clause. However, note that in v. 15 Pharaoh uses the singular to refer to the two dreams. In vv. 17-24 Pharaoh seems to treat the dreams as two parts of one dream (see especially v. 22).
- Genesis 41:8 tn “there was no interpreter.”
- Genesis 41:8 tn Heb “for Pharaoh.” The pronoun “him” has been used in the translation for stylistic reasons.
- Genesis 41:9 tn Heb “sins, offenses.” He probably refers here to the offenses that landed him in prison (see 40:1).
- Genesis 41:11 tn Heb “and we dreamed a dream in one night, I and he, each according to the interpretation of his dream we dreamed.”
- Genesis 41:12 tn Or “slave.”
- Genesis 41:12 tn Heb “a servant to the captain of the guards.” On this construction see GKC 419-20 §129.c.
- Genesis 41:12 tn The words “our dreams” are supplied in the translation for stylistic reasons.
- Genesis 41:12 tn Heb “and he interpreted for us our dreams, each according to his dream he interpreted.”
- Genesis 41:13 tn Heb “interpreted.”
- Genesis 41:13 tn Heb “he”; the referent (Pharaoh) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Genesis 41:13 tn Heb “him”; the referent (the baker) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Genesis 41:14 tn Heb “and Pharaoh sent and called,” indicating a summons to the royal court.
- Genesis 41:15 tn Heb “dreamed a dream.”
- Genesis 41:15 tn Heb “there is no one interpreting.”
- Genesis 41:15 tn Heb “saying.”
- Genesis 41:15 tn Heb “you hear a dream to interpret it,” which may mean, “you only have to hear a dream to be able to interpret it.”
- Genesis 41:16 tn Heb “not within me.”
- Genesis 41:16 tn Heb “God will answer.”
- Genesis 41:16 tn The expression שְׁלוֹם פַּרְעֹה (shelom parʿoh) is here rendered “the welfare of Pharaoh” because the dream will be about life in his land. Some interpret it to mean an answer of “peace”—one that will calm his heart, or give him the answer that he desires (cf. NIV, NRSV, NLT).
- Genesis 41:17 tn Heb “In my dream look, I was standing.” The use of the particle הִנֵּה (hinneh, “look”) here (and also in vv. 18, 19, 22, 23) invites the hearer (within the context of the narrative, Joseph, but in the broader sense the reader or hearer of the Book of Genesis) to observe the scene through Pharaoh’s eyes.
- Genesis 41:18 tn Heb “and look, from the Nile seven cows were coming up, fat of flesh and attractive of appearance, and they grazed in the reeds.”
- Genesis 41:19 tn Heb “And look.”
- Genesis 41:19 tn The word “cows” is supplied here in the translation for stylistic reasons.
- Genesis 41:20 tn Heb “the seven first fat cows.”
- Genesis 41:21 tn Heb “when they went inside them.”
- Genesis 41:21 tn Heb “it was not known.”
- Genesis 41:22 tn Heb “and I saw in my dream and look.”
- Genesis 41:23 tn Heb “And look.”
- Genesis 41:24 tn The words “all this” have been supplied in the translation for stylistic reasons.
- Genesis 41:24 tn Heb “and there was no one telling me.”
- Genesis 41:25 tn Heb “the dream of Pharaoh is one.”
- Genesis 41:25 tn Heb “declared.”
- Genesis 41:25 tn The active participle here indicates what is imminent.
- Genesis 41:26 tn Heb “one dream it is.”
- Genesis 41:27 tn Heb “are.” Another option is to translate, “There will be seven years of famine.”
- Genesis 41:28 tn Heb “it is the word that I spoke.”
- Genesis 41:30 tn The perfect with the vav consecutive continues the time frame of the preceding participle, which has an imminent future nuance here.
- Genesis 41:30 tn The Hebrew verb כָּלָה (kalah) in the Piel stem means “to finish, to destroy, to bring an end to.” The severity of the famine will ruin the land of Egypt.
- Genesis 41:31 tn Heb “known.”
- Genesis 41:31 tn Or “heavy.”
- Genesis 41:32 tn Heb “and concerning the repeating of the dream to Pharaoh two times.” The Niphal infinitive here is the object of the preposition; it is followed by the subjective genitive “of the dream.”
- Genesis 41:32 tn Heb “established.”
- Genesis 41:32 tn The clause combines a participle and an infinitive construct: God “is hurrying…to do it,” meaning he is going to do it soon.
- Genesis 41:33 tn Heb “let Pharaoh look.” The jussive form expresses Joseph’s advice to Pharaoh.
- Genesis 41:33 tn Heb “a man discerning and wise.” The order of the terms is rearranged in the translation for stylistic reasons.
- Genesis 41:33 tn Heb “and let him set him.”
- Genesis 41:34 tn The imperfect verbal form has an obligatory nuance here. Smr has a jussive form here, “and let [Pharaoh] do.”
- Genesis 41:34 tn Heb “and let him appoint.” The jussive form expresses Joseph’s advice to Pharaoh.
- Genesis 41:34 tn Heb “appointees.” The noun is a cognate accusative of the preceding verb. Since “appoint appointees” would be redundant in English, the term “officials” was used in the translation instead.
- Genesis 41:34 tn Heb “and he shall collect a fifth of the land of Egypt.” The language is figurative (metonymy); it means what the land produces, i.e., the harvest.
- Genesis 41:35 tn Heb “all the food.”
- Genesis 41:35 tn Heb “under the hand of Pharaoh.”
- Genesis 41:35 tn Heb “[for] food in the cities.” The noun translated “food” is an adverbial accusative in the sentence.
- Genesis 41:35 tn The perfect with vav (ו) consecutive carries the same force as the sequence of jussives before it.
- Genesis 41:36 tn Heb “and the land will not be cut off in the famine.”
- Genesis 41:37 tn Heb “and the matter was good in the eyes of Pharaoh and in the eyes of all his servants.”
- Genesis 41:38 tn Heb “like this,” but the referent could be misunderstood to be a man like that described by Joseph in v. 33, rather than Joseph himself. For this reason the proper name “Joseph” has been supplied in the translation.
- Genesis 41:38 tn The rhetorical question expects the answer “No, of course not!”
- Genesis 41:39 tn Heb “as discerning and wise.” The order has been rearranged in the translation for stylistic reasons.
- Genesis 41:40 tn Heb “and at your mouth (i.e., instructions) all my people will kiss.” G. J. Wenham translates this “shall kowtow to your instruction” (Genesis [WBC], 2:395). Although there is some textual support for reading “will be judged, ruled by you,” this is probably an attempt to capture the significance of this word. Wenham lists a number of references where individuals have tried to make connections with other words or expressions—such as a root meaning “order themselves” lying behind “kiss,” or an idiomatic idea of “kiss” meaning “seal the mouth,” and so “be silent and submit to.” See K. A. Kitchen, “The Term Nsq in Genesis 41:40, ” ExpTim 69 (1957): 30; D. S. Sperling, “Genesis 41:40: A New Interpretation,” JANESCU 10 (1978): 113-19.
- Genesis 41:40 tn Heb “only the throne, I will be greater than you.”
- Genesis 41:41 tn The translation assumes that the perfect verbal form is descriptive of a present action. Another option is to understand it as rhetorical, in which case Pharaoh describes a still future action as if it had already occurred in order to emphasize its certainty. In this case one could translate “I have placed” or “I will place.” The verb נָתַן (natan) is translated here as “to place in authority [over].”
- Genesis 41:41 sn Joseph became the grand vizier of the land of Egypt. See W. A. Ward, “The Egyptian Office of Joseph,” JSS 5 (1960): 144-50; and R. de Vaux, Ancient Israel, 129-31.
- Genesis 41:42 tn The Hebrew word שֵׁשׁ (shesh) is an Egyptian loanword that describes the fine linen robes that Egyptian royalty wore. The clothing signified Joseph’s rank.
- Genesis 41:43 tn Heb “he”; the referent (Pharaoh) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Genesis 41:43 tn Heb “and he caused him to ride in the second chariot which was his.”
- Genesis 41:43 tn The verb form appears to be a causative imperative from a verbal root meaning “to kneel.” It is a homonym of the word “bless” (identical in root letters but not related etymologically).
- Genesis 41:44 tn Heb “apart from you.”
- Genesis 41:44 tn Heb “no man,” but here “man” is generic, referring to people in general.
- Genesis 41:44 tn The idiom “lift up hand or foot” means “take any action” here.
- Genesis 41:45 sn The meaning of Joseph’s Egyptian name, Zaphenath-Paneah, is uncertain. Many recent commentators have followed the proposal of G. Steindorff that it means “the god has said, ‘he will live’” (“Der Name Josephs Saphenat-Pa‘neach,” ZÄS 31 : 41-42); others have suggested “the god speaks and lives” (see BDB 861 s.v. צָפְנָת פַּעְנֵחַ); “the man he knows” (J. Vergote, Joseph en Égypte, 145); or “Joseph [who is called] ʾIp-ʿankh” (K. A. Kitchen, NBD3 1262).
- Genesis 41:45 sn The name Asenath may mean “she belongs to the goddess Neit” (see HALOT 74 s.v. אָֽסְנַת). A novel was written at the beginning of the first century entitled Joseph and Asenath, which included a legendary account of the conversion of Asenath to Joseph’s faith in Yahweh. However, all that can be determined from this chapter is that their children received Hebrew names. See also V. Aptowitzer, “Asenath, the Wife of Joseph—a Haggadic Literary-Historical Study,” HUCA 1 (1924): 239-306.
- Genesis 41:45 sn On (also in v. 50) is another name for the city of Heliopolis.
- Genesis 41:45 tn Heb “and he passed through.”
- Genesis 41:46 tn Heb “a son of thirty years.”
- Genesis 41:46 tn Heb “when he stood before.”
- Genesis 41:46 tn Heb “went out from before.”
- Genesis 41:46 tn Heb “and he passed through all the land of Egypt”; this phrase is interpreted by JPS to mean that Joseph “emerged in charge of the whole land.”
- Genesis 41:47 tn Heb “brought forth by handfuls.”
- Genesis 41:48 tn Heb “he”; the referent (Joseph) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Genesis 41:48 tn Heb “all the food.”
- Genesis 41:48 tn Heb “of the seven years which were in the land of Egypt and placed food in the cities.”
- Genesis 41:49 tn Heb “and Joseph gathered grain like the sand of the sea, multiplying much.” To emphasize the vast amount of grain he stored up, the Hebrew text modifies the verb “gathered” with an infinitive absolute and an adverb.
- Genesis 41:50 tn Heb “before the year of the famine came.”
- Genesis 41:50 tn Heb “gave birth for him.”
- Genesis 41:51 sn The name Manasseh (מְנַשֶּׁה, menasheh) describes God’s activity on behalf of Joseph, explaining in general the significance of his change of fortune. The name is a Piel participle, suggesting the meaning “he who brings about forgetfulness.” The Hebrew verb נַשַּׁנִי (nashani) may have been used instead of the normal נִשַּׁנִי (nishani) to provide a closer sound play with the name. The giving of this Hebrew name to his son shows that Joseph retained his heritage and faith; and it shows that a brighter future was in store for him.
- Genesis 41:51 tn The word “saying” has been supplied in the translation for stylistic reasons.
- Genesis 41:51 tn Or “for.”
- Genesis 41:52 sn The name Ephraim (אֶפְרַיִם, ʾefrayim), a form of the Hebrew verb פָּרָה (parah), means “to bear fruit.” The theme of fruitfulness is connected with this line of the family from Rachel (30:2) on down (see Gen 49:22, Deut 33:13-17, and Hos 13:15). But there is some difficulty with the name “Ephraim” itself. It appears to be a dual, for which F. Delitzsch simply said it meant “double fruitfulness” (New Commentary on Genesis, 2:305). G. J. Spurrell suggested it was a diphthongal pronunciation of a name ending in -an or -am, often thought to be dual suffixes (Notes on the text of the book of Genesis, 334). Many, however, simply connect the name to the territory of Ephraim and interpret it to be “fertile land” (C. Fontinoy, “Les noms de lieux en -ayim dans la Bible,” UF 3 : 33-40). The dual would then be an old locative ending. There is no doubt that the name became attached to the land in which the tribe settled, and it is possible that is where the dual ending came from, but in this story it refers to Joseph’s God-given fruitfulness.
- Genesis 41:52 tn The word “saying” has been supplied in the translation for stylistic reasons.
- Genesis 41:52 tn Or “for.”
- Genesis 41:54 tn Heb “began to arrive.”
- Genesis 41:55 tn Heb “to all Egypt.” The name of the country is used by metonymy for the inhabitants.
- Genesis 41:56 tn Or “over the entire land”; Heb “over all the face of the earth.” The disjunctive clause is circumstantial-temporal to the next clause.
- Genesis 41:56 tc The MT reads “he opened all that was in [or “among”] them.” The translation follows the reading of the LXX and Syriac versions.
- Genesis 41:57 tn Heb “all the earth,” which refers here (by metonymy) to the people of the earth. Note that the following verb is plural in form, indicating that the inhabitants of the earth are in view.
New International Version - UK
For the director of music. To the tune of ‘Lilies’. Of the Sons of Korah. A maskil.[b] A wedding song.
1 My heart is stirred by a noble theme
as I recite my verses for the king;
my tongue is the pen of a skilful writer.
2 You are the most excellent of men
and your lips have been anointed with grace,
since God has blessed you for ever.
3 Gird your sword on your side, you mighty one;
clothe yourself with splendour and majesty.
4 In your majesty ride forth victoriously
in the cause of truth, humility and justice;
let your right hand achieve awesome deeds.
5 Let your sharp arrows pierce the hearts of the king’s enemies;
let the nations fall beneath your feet.
6 Your throne, O God,[c] will last for ever and ever;
a sceptre of justice will be the sceptre of your kingdom.
7 You love righteousness and hate wickedness;
therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions
by anointing you with the oil of joy.
8 All your robes are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia;
from palaces adorned with ivory
the music of the strings makes you glad.
9 Daughters of kings are among your honoured women;
at your right hand is the royal bride in gold of Ophir.
10 Listen, daughter, and pay careful attention:
Forget your people and your father’s house.
11 Let the king be enthralled by your beauty;
honour him, for he is your lord.
12 The city of Tyre will come with a gift,[d]
people of wealth will seek your favour.
13 All glorious is the princess within her chamber;
her gown is interwoven with gold.
14 In embroidered garments she is led to the king;
her virgin companions follow her –
those brought to be with her.
15 Led in with joy and gladness,
they enter the palace of the king.
16 Your sons will take the place of your fathers;
you will make them princes throughout the land.
17 I will perpetuate your memory through all generations;
therefore the nations will praise you for ever and ever.
New English Translation
For the music director, according to the tune of “Lilies”;[b] by the Korahites, a well-written poem,[c] a love song.
45 My heart is stirred by a beautiful song.[d]
I say, “I have composed this special song[e] for the king;
my tongue is as skilled as the stylus of an experienced scribe.”[f]
2 You are the most handsome of all men.[g]
You speak in an impressive and fitting manner.[h]
For this reason[i] God grants you continual blessings.[j]
3 Strap your sword to your thigh, O warrior.[k]
Appear in your majestic splendor.[l]
4 Appear in your majesty and be victorious.[m]
Ride forth for the sake of what is right,[n]
on behalf of justice.[o]
Then your right hand will accomplish mighty acts.[p]
5 Your arrows are sharp
and penetrate the hearts of the king’s enemies.
Nations fall at your feet.[q]
6 Your throne,[r] O God, is permanent.[s]
The scepter[t] of your kingdom is a scepter of justice.
7 You love[u] justice and hate evil.[v]
For this reason God, your God,[w] has anointed you[x]
with the oil of joy,[y] elevating you above your companions.[z]
8 All your garments are perfumed with[aa] myrrh, aloes, and cassia.
From the luxurious palaces[ab] comes the music of stringed instruments that makes you happy.[ac]
9 Princesses[ad] are among your honored women.[ae]
Your bride[af] stands at your right hand, wearing jewelry made with gold from Ophir.[ag]
10 Listen, O princess.[ah]
Observe and pay attention![ai]
Forget your homeland[aj] and your family.[ak]
11 Then[al] the king will be attracted by[am] your beauty.
After all, he is your master. Submit[an] to him.[ao]
12 Rich people from Tyre
will seek your favor by bringing a gift.[ap]
13 The princess[aq] looks absolutely magnificent,[ar]
decked out in pearls and clothed in a brocade trimmed with gold.[as]
14 In embroidered robes she is escorted to the king.
Her attendants, the maidens of honor who follow her,
are led before you.[at]
15 They are bubbling with joy as they walk in procession
and enter the royal palace.[au]
16 Your[av] sons will carry on[aw] the dynasty of your ancestors;[ax]
you will make them princes throughout the land.
17 I will proclaim your greatness through the coming years,[ay]
then the nations will praise you[az] forever.
- Psalm 45:1 sn Psalm 45. This is a romantic poem celebrating the Davidic king’s marriage to a lovely princess. The psalmist praises the king for his military prowess and commitment to justice, urges the bride to be loyal to the king, and anticipates that the marriage will be blessed with royal offspring.
- Psalm 45:1 tn Heb “according to lilies.” “Lilies” may be a tune title or musical style, suggestive of romantic love. The imagery of a “lily” appears frequently in the Song of Songs in a variety of contexts (see 2:1-2, 16; 4:5; 5:13; 6:2-3; 7:2).
- Psalm 45:1 tn The meaning of the Hebrew term מַשְׂכִּיל (maskil) is uncertain. See the note on the phrase “well-written song” in the superscription of Ps 42.
- Psalm 45:1 tn Heb “[with] a good word.” The “good word” probably refers here to the song that follows.
- Psalm 45:1 tn Heb “my works [are] for a king.” The plural “works” may here indicate degree, referring to the special musical composition that follows.
- Psalm 45:1 tn Heb “my tongue [is] a stylus of a skillful scribe.” Words flow from the psalmist’s tongue just as they do from a scribe’s stylus.
- Psalm 45:2 tn Heb “you are handsome from the sons of man.” The preposition “from” is used in a comparative (“more than”) sense. The peculiar verb form יָפְיָפִיתָ (yafyafita) is probably the result of dittography of יפ (yod-pe) and should be emended to יָפִיתָ (yafita). See GKC 152 §55.e.
- Psalm 45:2 tn Heb “favor is poured out on your lips.” “Lips” probably stands by metonymy for the king’s speech. Some interpret the Hebrew term חֵן (khen) as referring here to “gracious (i.e., kind and polite) speech”, but the word probably refers more generally to “attractive” speech that is impressively articulated and fitting for the occasion. For other instances of the term being used of speech, see Prov 22:11 and Eccl 10:12.
- Psalm 45:2 tn Or “this demonstrates.” The construction עַל־כֵּן (ʿal ken, “therefore”) usually indicates what logically follows from a preceding statement. However, here it may infer the cause from the effect, indicating the underlying basis or reason for what precedes (see BDB 487 s.v. I כֵּן 3.f; C. A. Briggs and E. G. Briggs, Psalms [ICC], 1:386).
- Psalm 45:2 tn Or “blesses you forever.” Here “bless” means to “endue with the power and skill to rule effectively,” as the following verses indicate.
- Psalm 45:3 tn Or “mighty one.”
- Psalm 45:3 tn The Hebrew text has simply, “your majesty and your splendor,” which probably refers to the king’s majestic splendor when he appears in full royal battle regalia.
- Psalm 45:4 tn Heb “and your majesty, be successful.” The syntax is awkward. The phrase “and your majesty” at the beginning of the verse may be accidentally repeated (dittography); it appears at the end of v. 3.
- Psalm 45:4 tn Or “for the sake of truth.”
- Psalm 45:4 tc The precise meaning of the MT is uncertain. The form עַנְוָה (ʿanvah) occurs only here. One could emend the text to עֲנָוָה וְצֶדֶק (ʿanavah vetsedeq, “[for the sake of truth], humility, and justice”). In this case “humility” would perhaps allude to the king’s responsibility to “serve” his people by promoting justice (cf. NIV “in behalf of truth, humility and righteousness”). The present translation assumes an emendation to יַעַן (yaʿan, “because; on account of”) which would form a suitable parallel to עַל־דְּבַר (ʿal devar, “because; for the sake of”) in the preceding line.
- Psalm 45:4 tn Heb “and your right hand will teach you mighty acts”; or “and may your right hand teach you mighty acts.” After the imperatives in the first half of the verse, the prefixed verbal form with vav (ו) conjunctive likely indicates purpose (“so that your right hand might teach you mighty acts”) or result (see the present translation). The “right hand” here symbolizes the king’s military strength. His right hand will “teach” him mighty acts by performing them and thereby causing him to experience their magnificence.
- Psalm 45:5 tn Heb “your arrows are sharp—peoples beneath you fall—in the heart of the enemies of the king.” The choppy style reflects the poet’s excitement.
- Psalm 45:6 sn The king’s throne here symbolizes his rule.
- Psalm 45:6 tn Or “forever and ever.”sn O God. The king is clearly the addressee here, as in vv. 2-5 and 7-9. Rather than taking the statement at face value, many prefer to emend the text because the concept of deifying the earthly king is foreign to ancient Israelite thinking (cf. NEB “your throne is like God’s throne, eternal”). However, it is preferable to retain the text and take this statement as another instance of the royal hyperbole that permeates the royal psalms. Because the Davidic king is God’s vice-regent on earth, the psalmist addresses him as if he were God incarnate. God energizes the king for battle and accomplishes justice through him. A similar use of hyperbole appears in Isa 9:6, where the ideal Davidic king of the eschaton is given the title “Mighty God” (see the note on this phrase there). Ancient Near Eastern art and literature picture gods training kings for battle, bestowing special weapons, and intervening in battle. According to Egyptian propaganda, the Hittites described Rameses II as follows: “No man is he who is among us, It is Seth great-of-strength, Baal in person; Not deeds of man are these his doings, They are of one who is unique” (see Miriam Lichtheim, Ancient Egyptian Literature, 2:67). Ps 45:6 and Isa 9:6 probably envision a similar kind of response when friends and foes alike look at the Davidic king in full battle regalia. When the king’s enemies oppose him on the battlefield, they are, as it were, fighting against God himself.
- Psalm 45:6 sn The king’s scepter symbolizes his royal authority.
- Psalm 45:7 sn To love justice means to actively promote it.
- Psalm 45:7 sn To hate evil means to actively oppose it.
- Psalm 45:7 tn For other examples of the repetition of Elohim, “God,” see Pss 43:4; 48:8, 14; 50:7; 51:14; 67:7. Because the name Yahweh (“Lord”) is relatively rare in Pss 42-83, where the name Elohim (“God”) predominates, this compounding of Elohim may be an alternative form of the compound name “the Lord my/your/our God.”
- Psalm 45:7 sn Anointed you. When read in the light of the preceding context, the anointing is most naturally taken as referring to the king’s coronation. However, the following context (vv. 8-9) focuses on the wedding ceremony, so some prefer to see this anointing as part of the king’s preparations for the wedding celebration. Perhaps the reference to his anointing at his coronation facilitates the transition to the description of the wedding, for the king was also anointed on this occasion.
- Psalm 45:7 sn The phrase oil of joy alludes to the fact that the coronation of the king, which was ritually accomplished by anointing his head with olive oil, was a time of great celebration and renewed hope. (If one understands the anointing in conjunction with the wedding ceremony, the “joy” would be that associated with the marriage.) The phrase “oil of joy” also appears in Isa 61:3, where mourners are granted “oil of joy” in conjunction with their deliverance from oppression.
- Psalm 45:7 tn Heb “from your companions.” The “companions” are most naturally understood as others in the royal family or, more generally, as the king’s countrymen.sn Verses 6-7 are quoted in Heb 1:8-9, where they are applied to Jesus.
- Psalm 45:8 tn The words “perfumed with” are supplied in the translation for clarification.
- Psalm 45:8 tn Heb “the palaces of ivory.” The phrase “palaces of ivory” refers to palaces that had ivory panels and furniture decorated with ivory inlays. Such decoration with ivory was characteristic of a high level of luxury. See 1 Kgs 22:39 and Amos 3:15.
- Psalm 45:8 tn Heb “from the palaces of ivory stringed instrument[s] make you happy.”
- Psalm 45:9 tn Heb “daughters of kings.”
- Psalm 45:9 tn Heb “valuable ones.” The form is feminine plural.
- Psalm 45:9 tn This rare Hebrew noun apparently refers to the king’s bride, who will soon be queen (see Neh 2:6). The Aramaic cognate is used of royal wives in Dan 5:2-3, 23.
- Psalm 45:9 tn Heb “a consort stands at your right hand, gold of Ophir.”sn Gold from Ophir is also mentioned in Isa 13:12 and Job 28:16. The precise location of Ophir is uncertain; Arabia, India, East Africa, and South Africa have all been suggested as options.
- Psalm 45:10 tn Heb “daughter.” The Hebrew noun בַּת (bat, “daughter”) can sometimes refer to a young woman in a general sense (see H. Haag, TDOT 2:334).sn Listen, O princess. The poet now addresses the bride.
- Psalm 45:10 tn Heb “see and turn your ear.” The verb רָאָה (raʾah, “see”) is used here of mental observation.
- Psalm 45:10 tn Heb “your people.” This reference to the “people” of the princess suggests she was a foreigner. Perhaps the marriage was arranged as part of a political alliance between Israel (or Judah) and a neighboring state. The translation “your homeland” reflects such a situation.
- Psalm 45:10 tn Heb “and the house of your father.”
- Psalm 45:11 tn After the preceding imperatives, the jussive verbal form with vav (ו) conjunctive is best understood as introducing a purpose (“so that the king might desire your beauty”) or result clause (see the present translation and cf. also NASB). The point seems to be this: The bride might tend to be homesick, which in turn might cause her to mourn and diminish her attractiveness. She needs to overcome this temptation to unhappiness and enter into the marriage with joy. Then the king will be drawn to her natural beauty.
- Psalm 45:11 tn Or “desire.”
- Psalm 45:11 tn Or “bow down.”
- Psalm 45:11 sn Submit to him. The poet here makes the point that the young bride is obligated to bring pleasure to her new husband. Though a foreign concept to modern western culture, this was accepted as the cultural norm in the psalmist’s day.
- Psalm 45:12 tn Heb “and a daughter of Tyre with a gift, your face they will appease, the rich of people.” The phrase “daughter of Tyre” occurs only here in the OT. It could be understood as addressed to the bride, indicating she was a Phoenician (cf. NEB). However, often in the OT the word “daughter,” when collocated with the name of a city or country, is used to personify the referent (see, for example, “Daughter Zion” in Ps 9:14, and “Daughter Babylon” in Ps 137:8). If that is the case here, then “Daughter Tyre” identifies the city-state of Tyre as the place from which the rich people come (cf. NRSV). The idiom “appease the face” refers to seeking one’s favor (see Exod 32:11; 1 Sam 13:12; 1 Kgs 13:6; 2 Kgs 13:4; 2 Chr 33:12; Job 11:19; Ps 119:58; Prov 19:6; Jer 26:19; Dan 9:13; Zech 7:2; 8:21-22; Mal 1:9).
- Psalm 45:13 tn Heb “[the] daughter of a king.”
- Psalm 45:13 tn Heb “[is] completely glorious.”
- Psalm 45:13 tc Heb “within, from settings of gold, her clothing.” The Hebrew term פְּנִימָה (penimah, “within”), if retained, would go with the preceding line and perhaps refer to the bride being “within” the palace or her bridal chamber (cf. NIV, NRSV). Since the next two lines refer to her attire (see also v. 9b), it is preferable to emend the form to פְּנִינִיהָּ (peniniha, “her pearls”) or to פְּנִינִים (peninim, “pearls”). The mem (מ) prefixed to “settings” is probably dittographic.
- Psalm 45:14 tn Heb “virgins after her, her companions, are led to you.” Some emend לָךְ (lakh, “to you”) to לָהּ (lah, “to her,” i.e., the princess), because the princess is now being spoken of in the third person (vv. 13-14a), rather than being addressed directly (as in vv. 10-12). However, the ambiguous suffixed form לָךְ need not be taken as second feminine singular. The suffix can be understood as a pausal second masculine singular form, addressed to the king. The translation assumes this to be the case; note that the king is addressed once more in vv. 16-17, where the second person pronouns are masculine.
- Psalm 45:15 tn Heb “they are led with joy and happiness, they enter the house of the king.”
- Psalm 45:16 tn The pronoun is second masculine singular, indicating the king is being addressed from this point to the end of the psalm.
- Psalm 45:16 tn The prefixed verbal form could be taken as jussive and the statement interpreted as a prayer, “May your sons carry on the dynasty of your ancestors!” The next line could then be taken as a relative clause, “[your sons] whom you will make princes throughout the land.”
- Psalm 45:16 tn Heb “in place of your fathers will be your sons.”
- Psalm 45:17 tn Heb “I will cause your name to be remembered in every generation and generation.” The cohortative verbal form expresses the poet’s resolve. The king’s “name” stands here for his reputation and character, which the poet praised in vv. 2-7.
- Psalm 45:17 sn The nations will praise you. As God’s vice-regent on earth, the king is deserving of such honor and praise.
New International Version - UK
Judas hangs himself
27 Early in the morning, all the chief priests and the elders of the people made their plans how to have Jesus executed. 2 So they bound him, led him away and handed him over to Pilate the governor.
3 When Judas, who had betrayed him, saw that Jesus was condemned, he was seized with remorse and returned the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and the elders. 4 ‘I have sinned,’ he said, ‘for I have betrayed innocent blood.’
‘What is that to us?’ they replied. ‘That’s your responsibility.’
5 So Judas threw the money into the temple and left. Then he went away and hanged himself.
6 The chief priests picked up the coins and said, ‘It is against the law to put this into the treasury, since it is blood money.’ 7 So they decided to use the money to buy the potter’s field as a burial place for foreigners. 8 That is why it has been called the Field of Blood to this day. 9 Then what was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet was fulfilled: ‘They took the thirty pieces of silver, the price set on him by the people of Israel, 10 and they used them to buy the potter’s field, as the Lord commanded me.’[a]
Jesus before Pilate
11 Meanwhile Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked him, ‘Are you the king of the Jews?’
‘You have said so,’ Jesus replied.
12 When he was accused by the chief priests and the elders, he gave no answer. 13 Then Pilate asked him, ‘Don’t you hear the testimony they are bringing against you?’ 14 But Jesus made no reply, not even to a single charge – to the great amazement of the governor.
15 Now it was the governor’s custom at the festival to release a prisoner chosen by the crowd. 16 At that time they had a well-known prisoner whose name was Jesus[b] Barabbas. 17 So when the crowd had gathered, Pilate asked them, ‘Which one do you want me to release to you: Jesus Barabbas, or Jesus who is called the Messiah?’ 18 For he knew it was out of self-interest that they had handed Jesus over to him.
19 While Pilate was sitting on the judge’s seat, his wife sent him this message: ‘Don’t have anything to do with that innocent man, for I have suffered a great deal today in a dream because of him.’
20 But the chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowd to ask for Barabbas and to have Jesus executed.
21 ‘Which of the two do you want me to release to you?’ asked the governor.
‘Barabbas,’ they answered.
22 ‘What shall I do, then, with Jesus who is called the Messiah?’ Pilate asked.
They all answered, ‘Crucify him!’
23 ‘Why? What crime has he committed?’ asked Pilate.
But they shouted all the louder, ‘Crucify him!’
24 When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. ‘I am innocent of this man’s blood,’ he said. ‘It is your responsibility!’
25 All the people answered, ‘His blood is on us and on our children!’
26 Then he released Barabbas to them. But he had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified.
The soldiers mock Jesus
27 Then the governor’s soldiers took Jesus into the Praetorium and gathered the whole company of soldiers round him. 28 They stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him, 29 and then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on his head. They put a staff in his right hand. Then they knelt in front of him and mocked him. ‘Hail, king of the Jews!’ they said. 30 They spat on him, and took the staff and struck him on the head again and again. 31 After they had mocked him, they took off the robe and put his own clothes on him. Then they led him away to crucify him.
The crucifixion of Jesus
32 As they were going out, they met a man from Cyrene, named Simon, and they forced him to carry the cross. 33 They came to a place called Golgotha (which means ‘the place of the skull’). 34 There they offered Jesus wine to drink, mixed with gall; but after tasting it, he refused to drink it. 35 When they had crucified him, they divided up his clothes by casting lots. 36 And sitting down, they kept watch over him there. 37 Above his head they placed the written charge against him: this is jesus, the king of the jews.
38 Two rebels were crucified with him, one on his right and one on his left. 39 Those who passed by hurled insults at him, shaking their heads 40 and saying, ‘You who are going to destroy the temple and build it in three days, save yourself! Come down from the cross, if you are the Son of God!’ 41 In the same way the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders mocked him. 42 ‘He saved others,’ they said, ‘but he can’t save himself! He’s the king of Israel! Let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him. 43 He trusts in God. Let God rescue him now if he wants him, for he said, “I am the Son of God.”’ 44 In the same way the rebels who were crucified with him also heaped insults on him.
The death of Jesus
45 From noon until three in the afternoon darkness came over all the land. 46 About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, ‘Eli, Eli,[c] lema sabachthani?’ (which means ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’).[d]
47 When some of those standing there heard this, they said, ‘He’s calling Elijah.’
48 Immediately one of them ran and got a sponge. He filled it with wine vinegar, put it on a staff, and offered it to Jesus to drink. 49 The rest said, ‘Now leave him alone. Let’s see if Elijah comes to save him.’
50 And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit.
51 At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook, the rocks split 52 and the tombs broke open. The bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life. 53 They came out of the tombs after Jesus’ resurrection and[e] went into the holy city and appeared to many people.
54 When the centurion and those with him who were guarding Jesus saw the earthquake and all that had happened, they were terrified, and exclaimed, ‘Surely he was the Son of God!’
55 Many women were there, watching from a distance. They had followed Jesus from Galilee to care for his needs. 56 Among them were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Joseph,[f] and the mother of Zebedee’s sons.
The burial of Jesus
57 As evening approached, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who had himself become a disciple of Jesus. 58 Going to Pilate, he asked for Jesus’ body, and Pilate ordered that it be given to him. 59 Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, 60 and placed it in his own new tomb that he had cut out of the rock. He rolled a big stone in front of the entrance to the tomb and went away. 61 Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were sitting there opposite the tomb.
The guard at the tomb
62 The next day, the one after Preparation Day, the chief priests and the Pharisees went to Pilate. 63 ‘Sir,’ they said, ‘we remember that while he was still alive that deceiver said, “After three days I will rise again.” 64 So give the order for the tomb to be made secure until the third day. Otherwise, his disciples may come and steal the body and tell the people that he has been raised from the dead. This last deception will be worse than the first.’
65 ‘Take a guard,’ Pilate answered. ‘Go, make the tomb as secure as you know how.’ 66 So they went and made the tomb secure by putting a seal on the stone and posting the guard.
New English Translation
Jesus Brought Before Pilate
27 When[a] it was early in the morning, all the chief priests and the elders of the people plotted against Jesus to execute him. 2 They[b] tied him up, led him away, and handed him over to Pilate[c] the governor.[d]
3 Now when[e] Judas, who had betrayed him, saw that Jesus[f] had been condemned, he regretted what he had done and returned the thirty silver coins to the chief priests and the elders, 4 saying, “I have sinned by betraying innocent blood!” But they said, “What is that to us? You take care of it yourself!” 5 So[g] Judas threw the silver coins into the temple and left. Then he went out and hanged himself. 6 The[h] chief priests took the silver and said, “It is not lawful to put this into the temple treasury, since it is blood money.” 7 After[i] consulting together they bought the Potter’s Field with it, as a burial place for foreigners. 8 For this reason that field has been called the “Field of Blood” to this day. 9 Then what was spoken by Jeremiah[j] the prophet was fulfilled: “They took the thirty silver coins, the price of the one whose price had been set by the people of Israel,[k] 10 and they gave them for the potter’s field, as the Lord commanded me.”[l]
Jesus and Pilate
11 Then[m] Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked him,[n] “Are you the king[o] of the Jews?” Jesus[p] said, “You say so.”[q] 12 But when he was accused by the chief priests and the elders, he did not respond. 13 Then Pilate said to him, “Don’t you hear how many charges they are bringing against you?” 14 But he did not answer even one accusation, so that the governor was quite amazed.
15 During the feast the governor was accustomed to release one prisoner to the crowd,[r] whomever they wanted. 16 At that time they had in custody a notorious prisoner named Jesus[s] Barabbas. 17 So after they had assembled, Pilate said to them, “Whom do you want me to release for you, Jesus[t] Barabbas or Jesus who is called the Christ?”[u] 18 (For he knew that they had handed him over because of envy.)[v] 19 As[w] he was sitting on the judgment seat,[x] his wife sent a message[y] to him:[z] “Have nothing to do with that innocent man;[aa] I have suffered greatly as a result of a dream[ab] about him today.” 20 But the chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowds to ask for Barabbas and to have Jesus killed. 21 The[ac] governor asked them, “Which of the two do you want me to release for you?” And they said, “Barabbas!” 22 Pilate said to them, “Then what should I do with Jesus who is called the Christ?”[ad] They all said, “Crucify him!”[ae] 23 He asked, “Why? What wrong has he done?” But they shouted more insistently, “Crucify him!”
Jesus is Condemned and Mocked
24 When[af] Pilate saw that he could do nothing, but that instead a riot was starting, he took some water, washed his hands before the crowd and said, “I am innocent of this man’s blood. You take care of it yourselves!”[ag] 25 In[ah] reply all the people said, “Let his blood be on us and on our children!” 26 Then he released Barabbas for them. But after he had Jesus flogged,[ai] he handed him over[aj] to be crucified.[ak] 27 Then the governor’s soldiers took Jesus into the governor’s residence[al] and gathered the whole cohort[am] around him. 28 They[an] stripped him and put a scarlet robe[ao] around him, 29 and after braiding[ap] a crown of thorns,[aq] they put it on his head. They[ar] put a staff[as] in his right hand, and kneeling down before him, they mocked him:[at] “Hail, king of the Jews!”[au] 30 They[av] spat on him and took the staff[aw] and struck him repeatedly[ax] on the head. 31 When[ay] they had mocked him, they stripped him of the robe and put his own clothes back on him. Then[az] they led him away to crucify him.
32 As[ba] they were going out, they found a man from Cyrene named Simon, whom they forced[bb] to carry his cross.[bc] 33 They[bd] came to a place called Golgotha[be] (which means “Place of the Skull”)[bf] 34 and offered Jesus[bg] wine mixed with gall to drink.[bh] But after tasting it, he would not drink it. 35 When[bi] they had crucified[bj] him, they divided his clothes by throwing dice.[bk] 36 Then they sat down and kept guard over him there. 37 Above[bl] his head they put the charge against him,[bm] which read:[bn] “This is Jesus, the king of the Jews.” 38 Then two outlaws were crucified with him, one on his right and one on his left. 39 Those[bo] who passed by defamed him, shaking their heads 40 and saying, “You who can destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save yourself![bp] If you are God’s Son, come down[bq] from the cross!” 41 In[br] the same way even the chief priests—together with the experts in the law[bs] and elders[bt]—were mocking him:[bu] 42 “He saved others, but he cannot save himself! He is the king of Israel! If he comes down[bv] now from the cross, we will believe in him! 43 He trusts in God—let God, if he wants to, deliver him now[bw] because he said, ‘I am God’s Son’!” 44 The[bx] robbers who were crucified with him also spoke abusively to him.[by]
45 Now from noon until three,[bz] darkness came over all the land.[ca] 46 At[cb] about three o’clock Jesus shouted with a loud voice,[cc] “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”[cd] 47 When[ce] some of the bystanders heard it, they said, “This man is calling for Elijah.” 48 Immediately[cf] one of them ran and got a sponge, filled it with sour wine,[cg] put it on a stick,[ch] and gave it to him to drink. 49 But the rest said, “Leave him alone! Let’s see if Elijah will come to save him.”[ci] 50 Then Jesus cried out again with a loud voice and gave up his spirit. 51 Just then[cj] the temple curtain[ck] was torn in two, from top to bottom. The[cl] earth shook and the rocks were split apart. 52 And tombs were opened, and the bodies of many saints who had died[cm] were raised. 53 (They[cn] came out of the tombs after his resurrection and went into the holy city and appeared to many people.) 54 Now when the centurion[co] and those with him who were guarding Jesus saw the earthquake and what took place, they were extremely terrified and said, “Truly this one was God’s Son!” 55 Many[cp] women who had followed Jesus from Galilee and given him support[cq] were also there, watching from a distance. 56 Among them were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Joseph, and the mother of the sons of Zebedee.
57 Now when it was evening, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who was also a disciple of Jesus.[cr] 58 He went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus.[cs] Then Pilate ordered that it be given to him. 59 Joseph[ct] took the body, wrapped it in a clean linen cloth,[cu] 60 and placed it in his own new tomb that he had cut in the rock.[cv] Then he rolled a great stone across the entrance[cw] of the tomb and went away. 61 (Now Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were sitting there, opposite the tomb.)
The Guard at the Tomb
62 The[cx] next day (which is after the day of preparation) the chief priests and the Pharisees[cy] assembled before Pilate 63 and said, “Sir, we remember that while that deceiver was still alive he said, ‘After three days I will rise again.’ 64 So give orders to secure the tomb until the third day. Otherwise his disciples may come and steal his body[cz] and say to the people, ‘He has been raised from the dead,’ and the last deception will be worse than the first.” 65 Pilate said to them, “Take[da] a guard of soldiers. Go and make it as secure as you can.” 66 So[db] they went with the soldiers[dc] of the guard and made the tomb secure by sealing the stone.
- Matthew 27:1 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:2 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:2 tc Most mss (A C W Γ Δ Θ 0250 ƒ1,13 565 579 700 1241 1424 M latt) have Ποντίῳ (Pontiō, “Pontius”) before Πιλάτῳ (Pilatō, “Pilate”), but there seems to be no reason for omitting the tribal name, either intentionally or unintentionally. Adding “Pontius,” however, is a natural expansion on the text, and is in keeping with several other NT and patristic references to the Roman governor (cf. Luke 3:1; Acts 4:27; 1 Tim 6:13; Ign. Magn. 11.1; Ign. Trall. 9.1; Ign. Smyrn. 1.2; Justin Martyr, passim). See TCGNT 52-53. The shorter reading, supported by א B L 0281 33 co, is thus strongly preferred.
- Matthew 27:2 sn The Jews most assuredly wanted to put Jesus to death, but they lacked the authority to do so. For this reason they handed him over to Pilate in hopes of securing a death sentence. The Romans kept close control of the death penalty in conquered territories to prevent it from being used to execute Roman sympathizers.
- Matthew 27:3 tn Grk “Then when.” Here τότε (tote) has been translated as “now” to indicate a somewhat parenthetical interlude in the sequence of events.
- Matthew 27:3 tn Grk “he”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Matthew 27:5 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “so” to indicate the implied result of the leaders’ response to Judas.
- Matthew 27:6 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:7 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:9 tc The problematic citing of Jeremiah for a text which appears to come from Zechariah has prompted certain scribes to alter it. Codex 22 has Ζαχαρίου (Zachariou, “Zechariah”) while Φ 33 and several versional witnesses omit the prophet’s name altogether. And codex 21 and the Latin ms l change the prophet’s name to “Isaiah,” in accordance with natural scribal proclivities to alter the text toward the most prominent OT prophet. But unquestionably the name Jeremiah is the wording of the original here, because it is supported by virtually all witnesses and because it is the harder reading. See D. A. Carson, “Matthew,” EBC 8:562-63, for a discussion of the textual and especially hermeneutical problem.
- Matthew 27:9 tn Grk “the sons of Israel,” an idiom referring to the people of Israel as an ethnic entity (L&N 11.58).
- Matthew 27:10 sn The source of this citation is debated (see the tc note on Jeremiah in v. 9 above for a related discussion). The quotation is most closely related to Zech 11:12-13, but the reference to Jeremiah in v. 9 as the source leads one to look there as well. There is no exact match for this text in Jeremiah, but there are some conceptual parallels: In Jer 18:2-6 the prophet visits a potter, and in Jer 32:6-15 he buys a field. D. A. Carson argues that Jer 19:1-13 is the source of the quotation augmented with various phrases drawn from Zech 11:12-13 (“Matthew,” EBC 8:563). W. D. Davies and D. C. Allison argue that the reference to Jeremiah is not meant to refer to one specific text from that prophet, but instead to signal that his writings as a whole are a source from which the quotation is drawn (Matthew [ICC], 3:568-69). Although the exact source of the citation is uncertain, it is reasonable to see texts from the books of Jeremiah and Zechariah both coming into play here.
- Matthew 27:11 tn Here δέ (de) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence of events within the narrative.
- Matthew 27:11 tn Grk “asked him, saying.” The participle λέγων (legōn) is redundant in contemporary English and has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:11 sn “Are you the king of the Jews?” Pilate was interested in this charge because of its political implications of sedition against Rome.
- Matthew 27:11 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:11 sn The reply “You say so” is somewhat enigmatic, like Jesus’ earlier reply to the Jewish leadership in 26:64.
- Matthew 27:15 sn The custom of Pilate to release one prisoner is unknown outside the gospels in Jewish writings, but it was a Roman custom at the time and thus probably used in Palestine as well (cf. Matt 27:15; John 18:39).
- Matthew 27:16 tc Although the external evidence for the inclusion of “Jesus” before “Barabbas” (in vv. 16 and 17) is rather sparse, being restricted virtually to mss of what was formally labeled the “Caesarean” text (Θ ƒ1 700* sys arm geo2; Ormss), the omission of the Lord’s name in apposition to “Barabbas” is such a strongly motivated reading that it can hardly be original. There is no good explanation for a scribe unintentionally adding ᾿Ιησοῦν (Iēsoun) before Βαραββᾶν (Barabban), especially since Barabbas is mentioned first in each verse (thus dittography is ruled out). Further, the addition of τὸν λεγόμενον Χριστόν (ton legomenon Christon, “who is called Christ”) to ᾿Ιησοῦν in v. 17 makes better sense if Barabbas is also called “Jesus” (otherwise, a mere “Jesus” would have been a sufficient appellation to distinguish the two). Metzger notes that codex S, a tenth-century majuscule, along with a score of minuscules, have a marginal comment on this verse as follows: “In many ancient copies which I have met with I found Barabbas himself likewise called ‘Jesus.’” The attribution of this scholium is variously given as Anastasius, Chrysostom, or even Origen (TCGNT 56).
- Matthew 27:17 tc Again, as in v. 16, the name “Jesus” is supplied before “Barabbas” in Θ ƒ1 700* sys Ormss (Θ 700* lack the article τόν [ton] before Βαραββᾶν [Barabban]). The same argument for accepting the inclusion of “Jesus” as the earlier reading in the previous verse applies here as well.
- Matthew 27:17 tn Or “Messiah”; both “Christ” (Greek) and “Messiah” (Hebrew and Aramaic) mean “one who has been anointed.”sn See the note on Christ in 1:16.
- Matthew 27:18 sn This is a parenthetical note by the author.
- Matthew 27:19 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:19 tn Or “the judge’s seat.”sn The judgment seat (βῆμα, bēma) was a raised platform mounted by steps and usually furnished with a seat. It was used by officials in addressing an assembly or making official pronouncements, often of a judicial nature.
- Matthew 27:19 tn The word “message” is not in the Greek text, but is implied. Direct objects were frequently omitted in Greek when clear from the context.
- Matthew 27:19 tn Grk “saying.” The participle λέγουσα (legousa) is redundant here in contemporary English and has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:19 tn The Greek particle γάρ (gar, “for”) has not been translated here.
- Matthew 27:19 tn Or “suffered greatly in a dream.” See the discussion on the construction κατ᾿ ὄναρ (kat’ onar) in BDAG 710 s.v. ὄναρ.
- Matthew 27:21 tn Grk “answering, the governor said to them.” This construction is somewhat redundant in English and has been simplified in the translation. Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:22 tn Or “Messiah”; both “Christ” (Greek) and “Messiah” (Hebrew and Aramaic) mean “one who has been anointed.”sn See the note on Christ in 1:16.
- Matthew 27:22 tn Grk “Him—be crucified!” The third person imperative is difficult to translate because English has no corresponding third person form for the imperative. The traditional translation “Let him be crucified” sounds as if the crowd is giving consent or permission. “He must be crucified” is closer, but it is more natural in English to convert the passive to active and simply say “Crucify him.”sn See the note on crucified in 20:19.
- Matthew 27:24 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:24 sn You take care of it yourselves! Compare the response of the chief priests and elders to Judas in 27:4. The expression is identical except that in 27:4 it is singular and here it is plural.
- Matthew 27:25 tn Grk “answering, all the people said.” This construction is somewhat redundant in English and has been simplified in the translation.
- Matthew 27:26 tn The Greek term φραγελλόω (phragelloō) refers to flogging. BDAG 1064 s.v. states, “flog, scourge, a punishment inflicted on slaves and provincials after a sentence of death had been pronounced on them. So in the case of Jesus before the crucifixion…Mt 27:26; Mk 15:15.”sn A Roman flogging (traditionally, “scourging”) was an excruciating punishment. The victim was stripped of his clothes and bound to a post with his hands fastened above him (or sometimes he was thrown to the ground). Guards standing on either side of the victim would incessantly beat him with a whip (flagellum) made out of leather with pieces of lead and bone inserted into its ends. While the Jews only allowed 39 lashes, the Romans had no such limit; many people who received such a beating died as a result. See C. Schneider, TDNT, 4:515-19.
- Matthew 27:26 tn Or “delivered him up.”
- Matthew 27:26 sn See the note on crucified in 20:19.
- Matthew 27:27 tn Or “into their headquarters”; Grk “into the praetorium.” sn The governor’s residence (Grk “praetorium”) was the Roman governor’s official residence. The one in Jerusalem may have been Herod’s palace in the western part of the city, or the fortress Antonia northwest of the temple area.
- Matthew 27:27 sn A Roman cohort was a tenth of a legion, about 500-600 soldiers.
- Matthew 27:28 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:28 sn The scarlet robe probably refers to a military garment that was cheaply dyed in contrast to expensive royal purple, but it resembled a king’s robe (BDAG 554 s.v. κόκκινος). The soldiers did this to Jesus as a form of mockery in view of the charges that he was a king.
- Matthew 27:29 tn Or “weaving.”
- Matthew 27:29 sn The crown may have been made from palm spines or some other thorny plant common in Israel. In placing the crown of thorns on his head, the soldiers were unwittingly symbolizing God’s curse on humanity (cf. Gen 3:18) being placed on Jesus. Their purpose would have been to mock Jesus’ claim to be a king; the crown of thorns would have represented the “radiant corona” portrayed on the heads of rulers on coins and other artifacts in the 1st century.
- Matthew 27:29 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:29 tn Or “a reed.” The Greek term can mean either “staff” or “reed.” See BDAG 502 s.v. κάλαμος 2.
- Matthew 27:29 tn Grk “they mocked him, saying.” The participle λέγοντες (legontes) is redundant and has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:29 tn Or “Long live the King of the Jews!”sn The statement Hail, King of the Jews! is a mockery patterned after the Romans’ cry of Ave, Caesar (“Hail, Caesar!”).
- Matthew 27:30 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:30 tn Or “the reed.”
- Matthew 27:30 tn The verb here has been translated as an iterative imperfect.
- Matthew 27:31 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:31 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence of events within the narrative.
- Matthew 27:32 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:32 tn Or “conscripted”; or “pressed into service.”
- Matthew 27:32 sn Jesus was beaten severely with a whip before this (the prelude to crucifixion, known to the Romans as verberatio, mentioned in Matt 27:26; Mark 15:15; John 19:1), so he would have been weak from trauma and loss of blood. Apparently he was unable to bear the cross himself, so Simon was conscripted to help (in all probability this was only the crossbeam, called in Latin the patibulum, since the upright beam usually remained in the ground at the place of execution). Cyrene was located in North Africa where Tripoli is today. Nothing more is known about this Simon. Mark 15:21 names him as father of two people apparently known to Mark’s audience.
- Matthew 27:33 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:33 tn This is an Aramaic name; see John 19:17.
- Matthew 27:33 sn A place called Golgotha (which means “Place of the Skull”). This location is north and just outside of Jerusalem. The hill on which it is located protruded much like a skull, giving the place its name. The Latin word for the Greek term κρανίον (kranion) is calvaria, from which the English word “Calvary” is derived (cf. Luke 23:33 in the KJV).
- Matthew 27:34 tn Grk “him”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Matthew 27:34 sn It is difficult to say for certain who gave Jesus this drink of wine mixed with gall (e.g., the executioner, or perhaps women from Jerusalem). In any case, whoever gave it to him most likely did so in order to relieve his pain, but Jesus was unwilling to take it.
- Matthew 27:35 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:35 sn See the note on crucified in 20:19.
- Matthew 27:35 tn Grk “by throwing the lot” (probably by using marked pebbles or broken pieces of pottery). A modern equivalent, “throwing dice,” was chosen here because of its association with gambling. According to L&N 6.219 a term for “dice” is particularly appropriate.sn An allusion to Ps 22:18.
- Matthew 27:37 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:37 sn Mention of the inscription is an important detail, because the inscription would normally give the reason for the execution. It shows that Jesus was executed for claiming to be a king. It was also probably written with irony from the executioners’ point of view.
- Matthew 27:37 tn Grk “was written.”
- Matthew 27:39 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:40 sn There is rich irony in the statements of those who were passing by, “save yourself!” and “come down from the cross!” In summary, they wanted Jesus to come down from the cross and save his physical life, but it was indeed his staying on the cross and giving his physical life that led to the fact that they could experience a resurrection from death to life.
- Matthew 27:40 tc ‡ Many significant witnesses (א* A D it sy[s],p) read καί (kai, here with the force of “then”) before κατάβηθι (katabēthi, “come down”). The shorter reading may well be due to homoioarcton, but judging by the diverse external evidence (א2 B L W Γ Δ Θ 0250 ƒ1,13 33 565 579 700 1241 1424 M lat) it is equally possible that the shorter reading is the wording of the initial text (and is so considered for this translation). NA28 puts the καί in brackets, indicating doubts as to its authenticity.
- Matthew 27:41 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:41 tn Or “with the scribes.” See the note on the phrase “experts in the law” in 2:4.
- Matthew 27:41 tn Only “chief priests” is in the nominative case; this sentence structure attempts to capture this emphasis.
- Matthew 27:41 tn Grk “Mocking him, the chief priests…said.”
- Matthew 27:42 tn Here the aorist imperative καταβάτω (katabatō) has been translated as a conditional imperative. This fits the pattern of other conditional imperatives (imperative + καί + future indicative) outlined by ExSyn 489.
- Matthew 27:43 sn An allusion to Ps 22:8.
- Matthew 27:44 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:44 sn Matthew’s wording suggests that both of the criminals spoke abusively to him. If so, one of them quickly changed his attitude toward Jesus (see Luke 23:40-43).
- Matthew 27:45 tn Grk “from the sixth hour to the ninth hour.”
- Matthew 27:45 sn This imagery has parallels to the Day of the Lord: Joel 2:10; Amos 8:9; Zeph 1:15.
- Matthew 27:46 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:46 tn Grk “with a loud voice, saying.” The participle λέγων (legōn) is redundant here in contemporary English and has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:46 sn A quotation from Ps 22:1.
- Matthew 27:47 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:48 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:48 sn Sour wine refers to cheap wine that was called in Latin posca, a cheap vinegar wine diluted heavily with water. It was the drink of slaves and soldiers, and was probably there for the soldiers who had performed the crucifixion.
- Matthew 27:48 tn Grk “a reed.”
- Matthew 27:49 tc Early and significant witnesses, including the chief Alexandrian mss (א B C L Γ 1010 and some versional witnesses) add a sentence at the end of this verse: “And another [soldier] took a spear and pierced him in the side, and water and blood flowed out.” This comment finds such a strong parallel in John 19:34 that it was undoubtedly lifted from the Fourth Gospel by some early, well-meaning scribe and inserted into Matt 27:49. The alternative—that this sentence was part of Matthew’s Ausgangstext—has serious difficulties, as Metzger notes: “It might be thought that the words were omitted because they represent the piercing as preceding Jesus’ death, whereas John makes it follow; but that difference would have only been a reason for moving the passage to a later position (perhaps at the close of ver. 50 or 54 or 56), or else there would have been some tampering with the passage in John, which is not the case. It is probable that the Johannine passage was written by some reader in the margin of Matthew from memory (there are several minor differences, such as the sequence of ‘water and blood’), and a later copyist awkwardly introduced it into the text” (TCGNT, 59). Consequently, even though the support for the shorter reading (A D W Θ ƒ1,13 33 565 579 700 1241 1424 M lat sy sa bo) is not as impressive, internal considerations on its behalf are compelling.
- Matthew 27:51 tn Grk “And behold.”
- Matthew 27:51 tn The referent of this term, καταπέτασμα (katapetasma), is not entirely clear. It could refer to the curtain separating the holy of holies from the holy place (Josephus, J. W. 5.5.5 [5.219]), or it could refer to one at the entrance of the temple court (Josephus, J. W. 5.5.4 [5.212]). Many argue that the inner curtain is meant because another term, κάλυμμα (kalumma), is also used for the outer curtain. Others see a reference to the outer curtain as more likely because of the public nature of this sign. Either way, the symbolism means that access to God has been opened up.
- Matthew 27:51 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:52 tn The verb κοιμάω (koimaō) literally means “sleep,” but it is often used in the Bible as a euphemism for the death of a believer.
- Matthew 27:53 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:54 sn See the note on the word centurion in Matt 8:5.
- Matthew 27:55 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:55 tn Grk “and ministered to him.”sn Cf. Luke 8:3.
- Matthew 27:57 sn Though some dispute that Joseph of Arimathea was a disciple of Jesus, his actions regarding Jesus’ burial suggest otherwise.
- Matthew 27:58 sn Asking for the body of Jesus was indeed a bold move on the part of Joseph of Arimathea, for it clearly and openly identified him with a man who had just been condemned and executed, namely, Jesus. His faith is exemplary, especially for someone who was a member of the council that handed Jesus over for crucifixion (cf. Mark 15:43, Luke 23:51). He did this because he sought to give Jesus an honorable burial.
- Matthew 27:59 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:59 tn The term σινδών (sindōn) can refer to a linen cloth used either for clothing or for burial.
- Matthew 27:60 tn That is, cut or carved into an outcropping of natural rock, resulting in a cave-like structure (see L&N 19.25).
- Matthew 27:60 tn Or “to the door,” “against the door.”
- Matthew 27:62 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Matthew 27:62 sn See the note on Pharisees in 3:7.
- Matthew 27:64 tn Grk “him.”
- Matthew 27:65 tn Grk “You have a guard.”
- Matthew 27:66 tn Here δέ (de) has been translated as “so” to indicate the implied result of Pilate’s order.
- Matthew 27:66 tn Grk “with the guard.” The words “soldiers of the” have been supplied in the translation to prevent “guard” from being misunderstood as a single individual.