December 21, 2010

A Deeper Look at Matthew 24:2

Matthew 24:2 (Young's Literal Translation)
 and Jesus said to them, `Do ye not see all these? verily I say to you, There may not be left here a stone upon a stone, that shall not be thrown down.'

Matthew 24:2 (King James Version)
 2And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.

Seems pretty simple, right.. but maybe not. 

I was using my interlinear Bible today, dissecting the meanings of the original Greek words found in this verse / passage, when I came across the Greek word: katalyō (Source:

Katalyō is the word translated as "down" in the two verses above. When we think of down in this verse we think of the temple stones being physically destroyed or thrown down, BUT... my source says the word katalyō actually means:

to dissolve, disunite
  1. (what has been joined together), to destroy, demolish
  2. metaph. to overthrow i.e. render vain, deprive of success, bring to naught
Yes the first meaning does seem to fall in line with the traditional view of the Temple stones literally being destroyed or thrown down, but what if Jesus was speaking metaphorical... as we know, Jesus used metaphors and figurative language quite often. 

Render vain
Deprive of success
Bring to naught

The Temple back then was the Jews connection to God, not just a building... Just speculation on my part, but what if the real meaning of this verse is speaking not so much about the temple being destroyed, but rather that it's perceived power and significance was destroyed... as that would fall in line with several other verses that speak about the "battle" in the first century against the "powers and principalities (principals /thoughts)", the power of the "devil" (flesh) being destroyed, etc...

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