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Matthew 27:29

    Matthew 27:29 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    And when they had platted a crown of thorns, they put it upon his head, and a reed in his right hand: and they bowed the knee before him, and mocked him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews!

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    And when they had platted a crown of thorns, they put it on his head, and a reed in his right hand: and they bowed the knee before him, and mocked him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews!

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    And they platted a crown of thorns and put it upon his head, and a reed in his right hand; and they kneeled down before him, and mocked him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews!

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    And they made a crown of thorns and put it on his head, and put a rod in his right hand, and they went down on their knees before him, and made sport of him, saying, Long life to the King of the Jews.

    Webster's Revision

    And they platted a crown of thorns and put it upon his head, and a reed in his right hand; and they kneeled down before him, and mocked him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews!

    World English Bible

    They braided a crown of thorns and put it on his head, and a reed in his right hand; and they kneeled down before him, and mocked him, saying, "Hail, King of the Jews!"

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    And they plaited a crown of thorns and put it upon his head, and a reed in his right hand; and they kneeled down before him, and mocked him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews!

    Definitions for Matthew 27:29

    Hail - A greeting of joy and peace.
    Platted - Braided; intertwined.

    Clarke's Commentary on Matthew 27:29

    A crown of thorns - Στεφανον εξ ακανθων. It does not appear that this crown was intended to be an instrument of punishment or torture to his head, but rather to render him ridiculous; for which cause also they put a reed in his hand, by way of scepter, and bowed their knees, pretending to do him homage. The crown was not probably of thorns, in our sense of the word: there are eminently learned men who think that the crown was formed of the herb acanthus; and Bishop Pearce and Michaelis are of this opinion. Mark, Mark 15:17, and John, John 19:5, term it, Ϛεφανον ακανθινον, which may very well be translated an acanthine crown or wreath, formed out of the branches of the herb acanthus, or bear's foot. This, however, is a prickly plant, though nothing like thorns, in the common meaning of that word. Many Christians have gone astray in magnifying the sufferings of Christ from this circumstance; and painters, the worst of all commentators, frequently represent Christ with a crown of long thorns, which one standing by is striking into his head with a stick. These representations engender ideas both false and absurd.

    There is a passage produced from Philo by Dr. Lardner, which casts much light on these indignities offered to our blessed Lord.

    "Caligula, the successor of Tiberius, gave Agrippa the tetrarchy of his uncle Philip, with the right of wearing a diadem or crown. When he came to Alexandria, on his way to his tetrarchate, the inhabitants of that place, filled with envy at the thoughts of a Jew having the title of king, showed their indignation in the following way. They brought one Carabus (a sort of an idiot) into the theater; and, having placed him on a lofty seat, that he might be seen by all, they put a diadem upon his head, made of the herb byblos, (the ancient papyrus, or paper flag); his body they covered with a mat or carpet, instead of a royal cloak. One seeing a piece of reed, παπυρου (the stem, probably, of the aforesaid herb) lying on the ground, picked it up, and put it in his hand in place of a scepter. Having thus given him a mock royal dress, several young fellows, with poles on their shoulders, came and stood on each side of him as his guards. Then there came people, some to pay their homage to him, some to ask justice, and some to consult him on affairs of state and the crowd that stood round about made a confused noise, crying, Mario, that being, as they say, the Syriac word for Lord; thereby showing that they intended to ridicule Agrippa, who was a Syrian." See Philo, Flace. p. 970, and Dr. Lardner, Works, vol. i. p. 159.

    There is the most remarkable coincidence between this account and that given by the evangelists; and the conjecture concerning the acanthus will probably find no inconsiderable support from the byblos and papyrus of Philo. This plant, Pliny says, grows to ten cubits long in the stem and the flowers were used ad deos coronandos, for Crowning The Gods. See Hist. Nat. lib. xiii. c. 11.

    The reflections of pious Quesnel on these insults offered to our blessed Lord merit serious attention. "Let the crown of thorns make those Christians blush who throw away so much time, pains, and money, in beautifying and adorning a sinful head. Let the world do what it will to render the royalty and mysteries of Christ contemptible, it is my glory to serve a King thus debased; my salvation, to adore that which the world despises; and my redemption, to go unto God through the merits of him who was crowned with thorns."

    Barnes' Notes on Matthew 27:29

    Had platted - The word "platted" here means "woven together." They made a "wreath" of a thorn-bush.

    A crown - Or perhaps, rather, a wreath.

    A crown was worn by kings, commonly made of gold and precious stones. To ridicule the pretensions of Jesus that he was a king, they probably plucked up a thornbush growing near, made it into something resembling in shape a royal crown, so as to correspond with the old purple robe, and to complete the mockery.

    Of thorns - What was the precise species of shrub denoted here is not certainly known. It was, however, doubtless, one of that species that has sharp points of very hard wood. They could therefore be easily pressed into the slain and cause considerable pain. Probably they seized upon the first thing in their way that could be made into a crown, and this happened to be a "thorn," thus increasing the sufferings of the Redeemer. Palestine abounds with thorny shrubs and plants. "The traveler finds them in his path, go where he may. Many of them are small, but some grow as high as a man's head. The Rabbinical writers say that there are no less than 22 words in the Hebrew Bible denoting thorny and prickly plants." Professor's Hackett's Illustrations of Scripture, p. 135. Compare Proverbs 24:30-31; Proverbs 15:19; Jeremiah 4:3.

    And a reed in his right hand - A reed is a straight, slender herb, growing in marshy places, and abundant on the banks of the Jordan. It was often used for the purpose of making staves for walking, and it is not improbable that this was such a staff in the possession of some person present. The word is several times thus used. See 2 Kings 18:21; Isaiah 36:6; Ezekiel 29:6. Kings commonly carried a "sceptre," made of ivory or gold, as a sign of their office or rank, Esther 4:11; Esther 8:4. This "reed" or "staff" they put in his hand, in imitation of a "sceptre," to deride, also, his pretensions of being a king.

    And they bowed the knee - This was done for mockery. It was an act of pretended homage. It was to ridicule his saying that he was a king. The common mode of showing respect or homage for kings was by kneeling or prostration. It shows amazing forbearance on the part of Jesus that he thus consented to be ridiculed and set at naught. No mere human being would have borne it. None but he who loved us unto death, and who saw the grand results that would come from this scene of sufferings, could have endured such mockery.

    Hail, King of the Jews! - The term "hail" was a common mode of salutation to a king, or even to a friend. It implies, commonly, the highest respect for office as well as the person, and is an invocation of blessings. Here it was used to carry on what they thought to be the farce of his being a king; to ridicule in every possible way the pretensions of a poor, unattended, unarmed man of Nazareth, as if he was a weak impostor or was deranged.