Matthew 13:13-18*

Note: subsequent to posting this structure I see that Lund has published a version in “Chiasmus in the New Testament“(1942).

A. Therefore speak I to them in parables:

B. because they seeing see not;
and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.

C. And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith,

D. By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand;
E. and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive:

F. For this people’s heart is waxed gross,
G. and their ears are dull of hearing,
H. and their eyes they have closed;

H’. lest at any time they should see with their eyes,
G’. and hear with their ears,
F’. and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.

E’. But blessed are your eyes, for they see:
D’. and your ears, for they hear.

C’. For verily I say unto you, That many prophets and righteous men have desired

B’. to see those things which ye see, and have not seen them;
and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard them.

A’. Hear ye therefore the parable of the sower.

2 thoughts on “Matthew 13:13-18*”

  1. I have certainly heard similar chiasms in this passage, with the same centre, though split into 2 parts, as eyes is repeated twice in your centre.

  2. I don’t like the A and A’, as they don’t truly match up, plus the A prime clearly starts next section. It also, misses. Here is what is happening chiastically (a 14 level chiasm):

    A. Because while seeing they do not see, and while hearing they do not hear, nor understand.
    B. So in their case the prophecy of Isaiah is being fulfilled, saying:
    C. You will keep on hearing, but will not hear to understand,
    D. And you will keep on seeing, but will not see well;
    E. For the heart of this people has become dull,
    F. And with their ears they scarcely hear,
    G. And they have closed their eyes
    G.’ Otherwise, they should see with their eyes,
    F.’ And hear with their ears
    E.’ And understand with their heart and returning, I would heal them.
    D.’ But blessed are your eyes, because they see;
    C.’ And your ears, because they hear.
    B.’ For truly the prophets and the righteous men desired the fulfilling
    A.’ to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.

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