Parallel Texts in Matthew, Mark & Luke

7. The Harvest
Matt 13:24-30; Mark 4:26-29

  context     Greek synopsis     English synopsis     analysis     source hypotheses     variants 

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Matthew 13 Mark 4   Luke  
  24  Another parable he put before them,      
  saying,  26  And he said,  
  "The kingdom of heaven   "The kingdom of God  
  may be compared to a man*   is as if a man*  
  who sowed good seed**   should scatter seed**  
  in his field;   upon the ground,  
25 but while men* were sleeping, 27 and should sleep and rise  
  his enemy came   night and day,  
      and the seed** should sprout  
    and grow,  
      he knows not how  
    28 The earth produces of itself,  
      first the blade,  
      then the ear,  
  and sowed weeds among the <grain>,   then the full grain in the ear.  
  and went away.      
26 So when the plants <sprouted>      
  and bore a <crop>, 29 But when the <crop> is ripe,  
      at once he puts in the sickle,  
  then the weeds appeared also.      
27 And the servants of the householder came      
  and said to him,      
  `Sir, did you not sow good seed *      
  in your field?      
  How then has it weeds?'      
28 He said to them,      
  `An enemy's done this.'      
  The servants said to him,      
  `Then do you want us to go      
  and gather them?'      
26 But he said,      
  lest in gathering the weeds      
  you root up the <grain> along with them.      
30 Let both grow together until the harvest;   because the harvest has come."  
  and at harvest time      
  I will tell the reapers,      
  Gather the weeds first      
  and bind them in bundles to be burned,      
  but gather the <grain> into my barn.'"      

* Note: The Greek word behind the RSV's use of "man" (or "men") is anthrópos indicating a generic human being regardless of gender. In actual practice in antiquity, however, sowing was usually a task performed by males.

** Note: English translation cannot reflect the different Greek words for seed used here. Matthew regularly uses sperma; Mark prefers sporos. Both terms derive from the Greek verb speiró ("sow") and were used to describe the same range of phenomena in biological processes of reproduction. Sperma, however, was the term more commonly used by Greek writers to refer to the kernels of grain themselves, while sporos (like its derivative "spore" in English) generally carried connotations of generative matter that had been released. 

Color Key
 Blue  Three gospels use same vocabulary.
 Teal  Two gospels use same vocabulary.
 Black  Words unique to a particular gospel.
 <and  RSV wording revised to reflect Greek.
   No parallel passage in this gospel.

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last revised 29 October 2021


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