All the commandments (Mt 5:19-5:19)

“Therefore,

Whoever breaks

One of the least

Of these commandments,

Whoever teaches

Others to do the same,

Shall be called least

In the kingdom of heaven.

But whoever does them,

Whoever teaches them,

Shall be called great

In the kingdom of heaven.”

 

ὃς ἐὰν οὖν λύσῃ μίαν τῶν ἐντολῶν τούτων τῶν ἐλαχίστων καὶ διδάξῃ οὕτως τοὺς ἀνθρώπους, ἐλάχιστος κληθήσεται ἐν τῇ βασιλείᾳ τῶν οὐρανῶν·ὃς δ’ ἂν ποιήσῃ καὶ διδάξῃ, οὗτος μέγας κληθήσεται ἐν τῇ βασιλείᾳ τῶν οὐρανῶν.

 

This is a unique saying of Matthew, since the other gospels do not have Jesus saying this. If someone was breaking the least of the commandments (ὃς ἐὰν οὖν λύσῃ μίαν τῶν ἐντολῶν τούτων τῶν ἐλαχίστων) and teaching other men to do the same (καὶ διδάξῃ οὕτως τοὺς ἀνθρώπους), they would be called the least in the kingdom of heaven (ἐλάχιστος κληθήσεται ἐν τῇ βασιλείᾳ τῶν οὐρανῶν). However, on the other hand, if someone taught and practiced what was in the commandments (ὃς δ’ ἂν ποιήσῃ καὶ διδάξῃ), they would be called great in the kingdom of heaven (οὗτος μέγας κληθήσεται ἐν τῇ βασιλείᾳ τῶν οὐρανῶν.). Apparently, there was a gradation in the commandments (ἐντολῶν), so that some were more important than others. The same can be said for the kingdom of heaven (τῇ βασιλείᾳ τῶν οὐρανῶν), since some would be great (μέγας), but others would be the least (ἐλαχίστων) in the kingdom. As usual, Matthew has Jesus emphasize the commandments and the kingdom of heaven.

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