The poor widow (Lk 21:2-21:2)

“Jesus saw

A poor widow

Put in

Two small copper coins.”

 

εἶδεν δέ τινα χήραν πενιχρὰν βάλλουσαν ἐκεῖ λεπτὰ δύο,

 

Luke indicated that Jesus saw a poor widow (εἶδεν δέ τινα χήραν πενιχρὰν) put in two small copper coins (βάλλουσαν ἐκεῖ λεπτὰ δύο).  Only Mark, chapter 12:42, has something similar, since Matthew did not mention this incident.  Mark indicated that Jesus said that this one poor widow came to the treasury (καὶ ἐλθοῦσα μία χήρα πτωχὴ).  She put in two small copper coins (ἔβαλεν λεπτὰ δύο).  A λεπτὰ “lepton” copper coin was the smallest Greek coin and often called a “mite”.  Two of these “lepton” copper coins was worth a penny or a κοδράντης (ὅ ἐστιν κοδράντης).  This κοδράντης “quadrans” was the smallest Roman copper coin.  This was a very small amount of money that this poor widow put into the Temple treasury.  Do you give pennies away?

No get out of jail free (Lk 12:59-12:59)

“I tell you!

You will never get out

Until you have paid

The very last penny.”

 

λέγω σοι, οὐ μὴ ἐξέλθῃς ἐκεῖθεν ἕως καὶ τὸ ἔσχατον λεπτὸν ἀποδῷς.

 

Luke said that Jesus gave a solemn pronouncement (λέγω σοι) that they would never get out of jail (οὐ μὴ ἐξέλθῃς ἐκεῖθεν) until they had paid every last lepton or penny (ως καὶ τὸ ἔσχατον λεπτὸν ἀποδῷς).  A lepton was a small Greek coin, the smallest amount of money.  Thus, it is translated as a penny.  There was something similar in Matthew, chapter 5:26, indicating a Q source.  Matthew had this solemn statement of Jesus (ἀμὴν λέγω σοι), just like Luke.  They would never get out of jail (οὐ μὴ ἐξέλθῃς ἐκεῖθεν) until they had paid off the last κοδράντην (ἕως ἂν ἀποδῷς τὸν ἔσχατον κοδράντην).  This κοδράντην was a 1/10 of a drachma, about .03 cents, generally translated as a penny.  Settle your debts before you go to court!  Have you had difficult financial dealings with other people?

The poor widow (Mk 12:42-12:42)

“One poor widow came.

She put in

Two small copper coins,

That are worth

A penny.”

 

καὶ ἐλθοῦσα μία χήρα πτωχὴ ἔβαλεν λεπτὰ δύο, ὅ ἐστιν κοδράντης.

 

Only Luke, chapter 21:2, has something similar, while Matthew did not mention this incident.  Mark indicated that Jesus said that one poor widow came to the treasury (καὶ ἐλθοῦσα μία χήρα πτωχὴ).  She put in two small copper coins (ἔβαλεν λεπτὰ δύο).  A λεπτὰ “lepton” copper coin was the smallest Greek coin and often called a “mite”.  2 of these “lepton” copper coins was worth a penny or a κοδράντης (ὅ ἐστιν κοδράντης).  This κοδράντης “quadrans” was the smallest Roman copper coin.  This was a very small amount of money that this poor widow put into the Temple treasury.