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Matthew 06:03-04 Jesus Makes A Pun About Charity

Discussion in 'Thoughts for Today' started by clontzjm, Jul 25, 2013.

  1. In Matthew 06:03-04, Jesus makes a Hebrew pun with the words “doing” and “your gift.”

    “Doing” ימינן
    “Your Gift” מתנן

    Matthew 6:3 But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing {“Doing” (ימינן)}, 4 so that your charitable deed {“Your Gift” (מתנן)} may be in secret. And your Father, who sees in secret, will reward you.

    J. Clontz – Editor of the Comprehensive New Testament
  2. A Pun?

    What I get from this is, if you donate to a Charaity, do it in private not for glory.
  3. Many of the puns by Jesus symbolically express how something “earthly” is turned into something “heavenly” by a small change. For example, In Genesis 17 God “turns” Abram into Abraham the father of many nations by a small change which adds a single letter to his name. In Matthew 6:3-4, the small difference between correctly turning what your right hand is “Doing” secretly into “Your Gift” is symbolized by the small change that Jesus makes between the word “Doing” and “Your Gift” that involves turning a single letter into another.

    “Doing” ימינן
    “Your Gift” מתנן

    This particular pun is contrasted with the pun in Matthew 6:2 concerning acting like a hypocrite. In Matthew 6:2, the pun on the words ”Wish to” and “Sound Trumpets” reveals that hypocrites wish to “blow their own horn” and are not really seeking God’s reward but their own aggrandizement. In Matthew 6:3, what your right hand is doing is in secret indicates that you are not seeking your own aggrandizement.

    Matthew 6:2 “Thus, when you give alms, do not {“Wish to” (תרצו)} sound a trumpet {“Sound Trumpets” (וחצוצרות)} before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by men.

    “Wish to” תרצו
    “Sound Trumpets” וחצוצרות

    J. Clontz – Editor of the Comprehensive New Testament

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