Luke 23:43: Where Does the Comma Go? Was the Thief in Paradise That Day?

/, Bible Studies, Biblical Texts, Eschatology, False Religions, Heaven, Hell, Salvation, Soteriology/Luke 23:43: Where Does the Comma Go? Was the Thief in Paradise That Day?

Luke 23:43: Where Does the Comma Go? Was the Thief in Paradise That Day?

More on the topic of the state of the unsaved dead

More Resources Explaining Salvation

More Resources on Evidence for Christianity and Christian Apologetics

[button title=”Download PDF” link=”http://faithsaves.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/Luke-2343comma.pdf” target=”_blank” size=”small” background=”#cf573e” color=”#fff” text_shadow=”#8d321f”]

Comment on this study

Luke 23:43: Where Does the Comma Go? Was the Thief in Paradise That Day?

“Verily, I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise,” as in the KJV,

or “Verily I say unto thee to day, Thou shalt be with me in paradise,”

as the Watchtower Society, Seventh Day Adventism, and other annihilationists teach?

1.) The SDA/Watchtower argument is that the original text did not have any punctuation, so the comma can be placed wherever one likes;  therefore this passage does not teach that the thief was indeed in Paradise with the Lord Jesus that very day, only that the Lord Jesus was saying on that day that, at some point in the future after he died and ceased to exist as a conscious being, he would be resurrected and enter Paradise.  The Watchtower/SDA argument is erroneous for the following reasons.

a.) We don’t have the original, and so we don’t know that it didn’t have punctuation;  that is an assumption.

b.) Even granting that assumption, there is overwhelming evidence that the pause in the verse comes after “thee,” not after “today.”  Every time this construction occurs in the New Testament, there is always a complete thought, and thus a comma required after “thee” in translation[i]: and

Matt. 5:26 aÓmh\n le÷gw soi, ouj mh\ e˙xe÷lqhØß e˙kei√qen, eºwß a·n aÓpodwˆ◊ß to\n e¶scaton kodra¿nthn.

Matt. 5:26 Verily I say unto thee, Thou shalt by no means come out thence, till thou hast paid the uttermost farthing.

Matt. 26:34 e¶fh aujtwˆ◊ oJ ∆Ihsouvß, ∆Amh\n le÷gw soi o¢ti e˙n tau/thØ thØv nukti÷, pri«n aÓle÷ktora fwnhvsai, tri«ß aÓparnh/shØ me.

Matt. 26:34 Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this night, before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice.

Mark 14:30 kai« le÷gei aujtwˆ◊ oJ ∆Ihsouvß, ∆Amh\n le÷gw soi, o¢ti sh/meron e˙n thØv nukti« tau/thØ, pri«n h£ di«ß aÓle÷ktora fwnhvsai, tri«ß aÓparnh/shØ me.

Mark 14:30 And Jesus saith unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this day, even in this night, before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice.

Luke 23:43 kai« ei•pen aujtwˆ◊ oJ ∆Ihsouvß, ∆Amh\n le÷gw soi, sh/meron met∆ e˙mouv e¶shØ e˙n twˆ◊ paradei÷swˆ.

Luke 23:43 And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.

John 3:3 aÓpekri÷qh oJ ∆Ihsouvß kai« ei•pen aujtwˆ◊, ∆Amh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw soi, e˙a»n mh\ tiß gennhqhØv a‡nwqen, ouj du/natai i˙dei√n th\n basilei÷an touv Qeouv.

John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

John 3:5 aÓpekri÷qh oJ ∆Ihsouvß, ∆Amh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw soi, e˙a»n mh\ tiß gennhqhØv e˙x u¢datoß kai« Pneu/matoß, ouj du/natai ei˙selqei√n ei˙ß th\n basilei÷an touv Qeouv.

John 3:5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

John 3:11 aÓmh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw soi o¢ti o§ oi¶damen lalouvmen, kai« o§ e˚wra¿kamen marturouvmen: kai« th\n marturi÷an hJmw◊n ouj lamba¿nete.

John 3:11 Verily, verily, I say unto thee, We speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness.

John 13:38 aÓpekri÷qh aujtwˆ◊ oJ ∆Ihsouvß, Th\n yuch/n sou uJpe«r e˙mouv qh/seiß; aÓmh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw soi, ouj mh\ aÓle÷ktwr fwnh/sei eºwß ou∞ aÓparnh/shØ me tri÷ß.

John 13:38 Jesus answered him, Wilt thou lay down thy life for my sake? Verily, verily, I say unto thee, The cock shall not crow, till thou hast denied me thrice.

John 21:18 aÓmh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw soi, o¢te h™ß new¿teroß, e˙zw¿nnueß seauto/n, kai« periepa¿teiß o¢pou h¡qeleß: o¢tan de« ghra¿shØß, e˙ktenei√ß ta»ß cei√ra¿ß sou, kai« a‡lloß se zw¿sei, kai« oi¶sei o¢pou ouj qe÷leiß.

John 21:18 Verily, verily, I say unto thee, When thou wast young, thou girdedst thyself, and walkedst whither thou wouldest: but when thou shalt be old, thou shalt stretch forth thy hands, and another shall gird thee, and carry thee whither thou wouldest not.

Furthermore, “Verily I say unto you,” the construction found in Luke 23:43 with a second person plural pronoun in the Greek dative case, instead of the second person singular, also always has a pause after the “unto/to you,” rather than a word later, in all 61 verses where the construction appears in the New Testament.  There is no instance of this construction taking the word after the “to you” and including it within the “verily I say unto” clause.  The idea is always a complete idea with “verily I say unto you,” followed by the content of what is being said.

Matt. 6:2 ›Otan ou™n poihØvß e˙lehmosu/nhn, mh\ salpi÷shØß e¶mprosqe÷n sou, w‚sper oi˚ uJpokritai« poiouvsin e˙n tai√ß sunagwgai√ß kai« e˙n tai√ß rJu/maiß, o¢pwß doxasqw◊sin uJpo\ tw◊n aÓnqrw¿pwn: aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, aÓpe÷cousi to\n misqo\n aujtw◊n.

Matt. 6:2 Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

Matt. 6:5 Kai« o¢tan proseu/chØ, oujk e¶shØ w‚sper oi˚ uJpokritai÷, o¢ti filouvsin e˙n tai√ß sunagwgai√ß kai« e˙n tai√ß gwni÷aiß tw◊n plateiw◊n e˚stw◊teß proseu/cesqai, o¢pwß a·n fanw◊si toi√ß aÓnqrw¿poiß: aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti aÓpe÷cousi to\n misqo\n aujtw◊n.

Matt. 6:5 And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

Matt. 6:16  ›Otan de« nhsteu/hte, mh\ gi÷nesqe w‚sper oi˚ uJpokritai« skuqrwpoi÷: aÓfani÷zousi ga»r ta» pro/swpa aujtw◊n, o¢pwß fanw◊si toi√ß aÓnqrw¿poiß nhsteu/onteß: aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti aÓpe÷cousi to\n misqo\n aujtw◊n.

Matt. 6:16 Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

Matt. 8:10 aÓkou/saß de« oJ ∆Ihsouvß e˙qau/mase, kai« ei•pe toi√ß aÓkolouqouvsin, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, oujde« e˙n twˆ◊ ∆Israh/l tosau/thn pi÷stin eu∞ron.

Matt. 8:10 When Jesus heard it, he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.

Matt. 10:15 aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, aÓnekto/teron e¶stai ghØv Sodo/mwn kai« Gomo/rrwn e˙n hJme÷raˆ kri÷sewß, h£ thØv po/lei e˙kei÷nhØ.

Matt. 10:15 Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city.

Matt. 10:42 kai« o§ß e˙a»n poti÷shØ eºna tw◊n mikrw◊n tou/twn poth/rion yucrouv mo/non ei˙ß o¡noma maqhtouv, aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, ouj mh\ aÓpole÷shØ to\n misqo\n aujtouv.

Matt. 10:42 And whosoever shall give to drink unto one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, verily I say unto you, he shall in no wise lose his reward.

Matt. 11:11 aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, oujk e˙gh/gertai e˙n gennhtoi√ß gunaikw◊n mei÷zwn ∆Iwa¿nnou touv baptistouv: oJ de« mikro/teroß e˙n thØv basilei÷aˆ tw◊n oujranw◊n mei÷zwn aujtouv e˙stin.

Matt. 11:11 Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.

Matt. 16:28 aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, ei˙si÷n tineß tw◊n w—de e˚sthko/twn, oiºtineß ouj mh\ geu/swntai qana¿tou, eºwß a·n i¶dwsi to\n ui˚o\n touv aÓnqrw¿pou e˙rco/menon e˙n thØv basilei÷aˆ aujtouv.

Matt. 16:28 Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom.

Matt. 18:3 kai« ei•pen, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, e˙a»n mh\ strafhvte kai« ge÷nhsqe wJß ta» paidi÷a, ouj mh\ ei˙se÷lqhte ei˙ß th\n basilei÷an tw◊n oujranw◊n.

Matt. 18:3 And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.

Matt. 18:13 kai« e˙a»n ge÷nhtai euJrei√n aujto/, aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti cai÷rei e˙p∆ aujtwˆ◊ ma◊llon, h£ e˙pi« toi√ß e˙nnenhkontaenne÷a toi√ß mh\ peplanhme÷noiß.

Matt. 18:13 And if so be that he find it, verily I say unto you, he rejoiceth more of that sheep, than of the ninety and nine which went not astray.

Matt. 18:18 aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, o¢sa e˙a»n dh/shte e˙pi« thvß ghvß, e¶stai dedeme÷na e˙n twˆ◊ oujranwˆ◊: kai« o¢sa e˙a»n lu/shte e˙pi« thvß ghvß, e¶stai lelume÷na e˙n twˆ◊ oujranwˆ◊.

Matt. 18:18 Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

Matt. 19:23 ÔO de« ∆Ihsouvß ei•pe toi√ß maqhtai√ß aujtouv, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti dusko/lwß plou/sioß ei˙seleu/setai ei˙ß th\n basilei÷an tw◊n oujranw◊n.

Matt. 19:23 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, Verily I say unto you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven.

Matt. 19:28 oJ de« ∆Ihsouvß ei•pen aujtoi√ß, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti uJmei√ß oi˚ aÓkolouqh/sante÷ß moi, e˙n thØv paliggenesi÷aˆ o¢tan kaqi÷shØ oJ ui˚o\ß touv aÓnqrw¿pou e˙pi« qro/nou do/xhß aujtouv, kaqh/sesqe kai« uJmei√ß e˙pi« dw¿deka qro/nouß, kri÷nonteß ta»ß dw¿deka fula»ß touv ∆Israh/l.

Matt. 19:28 And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

Matt. 21:21 aÓpokriqei«ß de« oJ ∆Ihsouvß ei•pen aujtoi√ß, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, e˙a»n e¶chte pi÷stin, kai« mh\ diakriqhvte, ouj mo/non to\ thvß sukhvß poih/sete, aÓlla» ka·n twˆ◊ o¡rei tou/twˆ ei¶phte, ⁄Arqhti kai« blh/qhti ei˙ß th\n qa¿lassan, genh/setai.

Matt. 21:21 Jesus answered and said unto them, Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and doubt not, ye shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree, but also if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done.

Matt. 21:31 ti÷ß e˙k tw◊n du/o e˙poi÷hse to\ qe÷lhma touv patro/ß; le÷gousin aujtwˆ◊, ÔO prw◊toß. le÷gei aujtoi√ß oJ ∆Ihsouvß, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, o¢ti oi˚ telw◊nai kai« ai˚ po/rnai proa¿gousin uJma◊ß ei˙ß th\n basilei÷an touv Qeouv.

Matt. 21:31 Whether of them twain did the will of his father? They say unto him, The first. Jesus saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you.

Matt. 23:36 aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, h¢xei tauvta pa¿nta e˙pi« th\n genea»n tau/thn.

Matt. 23:36 Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this generation.

Matt. 24:2 oJ de« ∆Ihsouvß ei•pen aujtoi√ß, Ouj ble÷pete pa¿nta tauvta; aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, ouj mh\ aÓfeqhØv w—de li÷qoß e˙pi« li÷qon, o§ß ouj mh\ kataluqh/setai.

Matt. 24:2 And 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.

Matt. 24:34 aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, ouj mh\ pare÷lqhØ hJ genea» au¢th, eºwß a·n pa¿nta tauvta ge÷nhtai.

Matt. 24:34 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.

Matt. 24:47 aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, o¢ti e˙pi« pa◊si toi√ß uJpa¿rcousin aujtouv katasth/sei aujto/n.

Matt. 24:47 Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods.

Matt. 25:12 oJ de« aÓpokriqei«ß ei•pen, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, oujk oi•da uJma◊ß.

Matt. 25:12 But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not.

Matt. 25:40 kai« aÓpokriqei«ß oJ basileu\ß e˙rei√ aujtoi√ß, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, e˙f∆ o¢son e˙poih/sate e˚ni« tou/twn tw◊n aÓdelfw◊n mou tw◊n e˙laci÷stwn, e˙moi« e˙poih/sate.

Matt. 25:40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

Matt. 25:45 to/te aÓpokriqh/setai aujtoi√ß, le÷gwn, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, e˙f∆ o¢son oujk e˙poih/sate e˚ni« tou/twn tw◊n e˙laci÷stwn, oujde« e˙moi« e˙poih/sate.

Matt. 25:45 Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.

Matt. 26:13 aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, o¢pou e˙a»n khrucqhØv to\ eujagge÷lion touvto e˙n o¢lwˆ twˆ◊ ko/smwˆ, lalhqh/setai kai« o§ e˙poi÷hsen au¢th, ei˙ß mnhmo/sunon aujthvß.

Matt. 26:13 Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached in the whole world, there shall also this, that this woman hath done, be told for a memorial of her.

Matt. 26:21 kai« e˙sqio/ntwn aujtw◊n ei•pen, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti ei–ß e˙x uJmw◊n paradw¿sei me.

Matt. 26:21 And as they did eat, he said, Verily I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me.

Mark 3:28 aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, o¢ti pa¿nta aÓfeqh/setai ta» aJmarth/mata toi√ß ui˚oi√ß tw◊n aÓnqrw¿pwn, kai« blasfhmi÷ai o¢saß a·n blasfhmh/swsin:

Mark 3:28 Verily I say unto you, All sins shall be forgiven unto the sons of men, and blasphemies wherewith soever they shall blaspheme:

Mark 6:11 kai« o¢soi a·n mh\ de÷xwntai uJma◊ß, mhde« aÓkou/swsin uJmw◊n, e˙kporeuo/menoi e˙kei√qen, e˙ktina¿xate to\n couvn to\n uJpoka¿tw tw◊n podw◊n uJmw◊n ei˙ß martu/rion aujtoi√ß. aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, aÓnekto/teron e¶stai Sodo/moiß h£ Gomo/rroiß e˙n hJme÷raˆ kri÷sewß, h£ thØv po/lei e˙kei÷nhØ.

Mark 6:11 And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear you, when ye depart thence, shake off the dust under your feet for a testimony against them. Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city.

Mark 8:12 kai« aÓnastena¿xaß twˆ◊ pneu/mati aujtouv le÷gei, Ti÷ hJ genea» au¢th shmei√on e˙pizhtei√; aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, ei˙ doqh/setai thØv geneaˆ◊ tau/thØ shmei√on.

Mark 8:12 And he sighed deeply in his spirit, and saith, Why doth this generation seek after a sign? verily I say unto you, There shall no sign be given unto this generation.

Mark 9:1 kai« e¶legen aujtoi√ß, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, o¢ti ei˙si÷ tineß tw◊n w—de e˚sthko/twn, oiºtineß ouj mh\ geu/swntai qana¿tou, eºwß a·n i¶dwsi th\n basilei÷an touv Qeouv e˙lhluqui√an e˙n duna¿mei.

Mark 9:1 And he said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That there be some of them that stand here, which shall not taste of death, till they have seen the kingdom of God come with power.

Mark 9:41 o§ß ga»r a·n poti÷shØ uJma◊ß poth/rion u¢datoß e˙n twˆ◊ ojno/mati mou, o¢ti Cristouv e˙ste÷, aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, ouj mh\ aÓpole÷shØ to\n misqo\n aujtouv.

Mark 9:41 For whosoever shall give you a cup of water to drink in my name, because ye belong to Christ, verily I say unto you, he shall not lose his reward.

Mark 10:15 aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, o§ß e˙a»n mh\ de÷xhtai th\n basilei÷an touv Qeouv wJß paidi÷on, ouj mh\ ei˙se÷lqhØ ei˙ß aujth/n.

Mark 10:15 Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein.

Mark 10:29 aÓpokriqei«ß de« oJ ∆Ihsouvß ei•pen, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, oujdei«ß e˙stin o§ß aÓfhvken oi˙ki÷an, h£ aÓdelfou/ß, h£ aÓdelfa¿ß, h£ pate÷ra, h£ mhte÷ra, h£ gunai√ka, h£ te÷kna, h£ aÓgrou/ß, eºneken e˙mouv kai« touv eujaggeli÷ou,

Mark 10:29 And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel’s,

Mark 12:43 kai« proskalesa¿menoß tou\ß maqhta»ß aujtouv, le÷gei aujtoi√ß, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti hJ ch/ra au¢th hJ ptwch\ plei√on pa¿ntwn be÷blhke tw◊n balo/ntwn ei˙ß to\ gazofula¿kion:

Mark 12:43 And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury:

Mark 13:30 aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti ouj mh\ pare÷lqhØ hJ genea» au¢th, me÷criß ou∞ pa¿nta tauvta ge÷nhtai.

Mark 13:30 Verily I say unto you, that this generation shall not pass, till all these things be done.

Mark 14:9 aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, o¢pou a·n khrucqhØv to\ eujagge÷lion touvto ei˙ß o¢lon to\n ko/smon, kai« o§ e˙poi÷hsen au¢th lalhqh/setai ei˙ß mnhmo/sunon aujthvß.

Mark 14:9 Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached throughout the whole world, this also that she hath done shall be spoken of for a memorial of her.

Mark 14:18 kai« aÓnakeime÷nwn aujtw◊n kai« e˙sqio/ntwn, ei•pen oJ ∆Ihsouvß, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, o¢ti ei–ß e˙x uJmw◊n paradw¿sei me, oJ e˙sqi÷wn met∆ e˙mouv.

Mark 14:18 And as they sat and did eat, Jesus said, Verily I say unto you, One of you which eateth with me shall betray me.

Mark 14:25 aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti oujke÷ti ouj mh\ pi÷w e˙k touv gennh/matoß thvß aÓmpe÷lou, eºwß thvß hJme÷raß e˙kei÷nhß o¢tan aujto\ pi÷nw kaino\n e˙n thØv basilei÷aˆ touv Qeouv.

Mark 14:25 Verily I say unto you, I will drink no more of the fruit of the vine, until that day that I drink it new in the kingdom of God.

Luke 4:24 ei•pe de÷, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti oujdei«ß profh/thß dekto/ß e˙stin e˙n thØv patri÷di aujtouv.

Luke 4:24 And he said, Verily I say unto you, No prophet is accepted in his own country.

Luke 12:37 maka¿rioi oi˚ douvloi e˙kei√noi, ou§ß e˙lqw»n oJ ku/rioß euJrh/sei grhgorouvntaß: aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti perizw¿setai kai« aÓnaklinei√ aujtou/ß, kai« parelqw»n diakonh/sei aujtoi√ß.

Luke 12:37 Blessed are those servants, whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching: verily I say unto you, that he shall gird himself, and make them to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them.

Luke 18:17 aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, o§ß e˙a»n mh\ de÷xhtai th\n basilei÷an touv Qeouv wJß paidi÷on, ouj mh\ ei˙se÷lqhØ ei˙ß aujth/n.

Luke 18:17 Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall in no wise enter therein.

Luke 18:29 oJ de« ei•pen aujtoi√ß, ∆Amh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti oujdei÷ß e˙stin o§ß aÓfhvken oi˙ki÷an, h£ gonei√ß, h£ aÓdelfou/ß, h£ gunai√ka, h£ te÷kna, eºneken thvß basilei÷aß touv Qeouv,

Luke 18:29 And he said unto them, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or parents, or brethren, or wife, or children, for the kingdom of God’s sake,

Luke 21:32 aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti ouj mh\ pare÷lqhØ hJ genea» au¢th, eºwß a·n pa¿nta ge÷nhtai.

Luke 21:32 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled.

John 1:51 kai« le÷gei aujtwˆ◊, ∆Amh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, aÓp∆ a‡rti o¡yesqe to\n oujrano\n aÓnewˆgo/ta, kai« tou\ß aÓgge÷louß touv Qeouv aÓnabai÷nontaß kai« katabai÷nontaß e˙pi« to\n ui˚o\n touv aÓnqrw¿pou.

John 1:51 And he saith unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Hereafter ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man.

John 5:19 ∆Apekri÷nato ou™n oJ ∆Ihsouvß kai« ei•pen aujtoi√ß, ∆Amh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, ouj du/natai oJ ui˚o\ß poiei√n aÓf∆ e˚autouv oujde÷n, e˙a»n mh\ ti ble÷phØ to\n pate÷ra poiouvnta: a± ga»r a·n e˙kei√noß poihØv, tauvta kai« oJ ui˚o\ß oJmoi÷wß poiei√.

John 5:19 Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.

John 5:24 aÓmh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti oJ to\n lo/gon mou aÓkou/wn, kai« pisteu/wn twˆ◊ pe÷myanti÷ me, e¶cei zwh\n ai˙w¿nion: kai« ei˙ß kri÷sin oujk e¶rcetai, aÓlla» metabe÷bhken e˙k touv qana¿tou ei˙ß th\n zwh/n.

John 5:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.

John 5:25 aÓmh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti e¶rcetai w‚ra kai« nuvn e˙stin, o¢te oi˚ nekroi« aÓkou/sontai thvß fwnhvß touv ui˚ouv touv Qeouv, kai« oi˚ aÓkou/santeß zhsontai,

John 5:25 Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live.

John 6:26 aÓpekri÷qh aujtoi√ß oJ ∆Ihsouvß kai« ei•pen, ∆Amh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, zhtei√te÷ me, oujc o¢ti ei¶dete shmei√a, aÓll∆ o¢ti e˙fa¿gete e˙k tw◊n a‡rtwn kai« e˙corta¿sqhte.

John 6:26 Jesus answered them and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled.

John 6:32 ei•pen ou™n aujtoi√ß oJ ∆Ihsouvß, ∆Amh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, Ouj Mwshvß de÷dwken uJmi√n to\n a‡rton e˙k touv oujranouv: aÓll∆ oJ path/r mou di÷dwsin uJmi√n to\n a‡rton e˙k touv oujranouv to\n aÓlhqino/n.

John 6:32 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven.

John 6:47 aÓmh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, oJ pisteu/wn ei˙ß e˙me÷, e¶cei zwh\n ai˙w¿nion.

John 6:47 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.

John 6:53 ei•pen ou™n aujtoi√ß oJ ∆Ihsouvß, ∆Amh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, e˙a»n mh\ fa¿ghte th\n sa¿rka touv ui˚ouv touv aÓnqrw¿pou kai« pi÷hte aujtouv to\ ai–ma, oujk e¶cete zwh\n e˙n e˚autoi√ß.

John 6:53 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.

John 8:34 aÓpekri÷qh aujtoi√ß oJ ∆Ihsouvß, ∆Amh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, o¢ti pa◊ß oJ poiw◊n th\n aJmarti÷an douvlo/ß e˙sti thvß aJmarti÷aß.

John 8:34 Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.

John 8:51 aÓmh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, e˙a¿n tiß to\n lo/gon to\n e˙mo\n thrh/shØ, qa¿naton ouj mh\ qewrh/shØ ei˙ß to\n ai˙w◊na.

John 8:51 Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death.

John 8:58 ei•pen aujtoi√ß oJ ∆Ihsouvß, ∆Amh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, pri«n ∆Abraa»m gene÷sqai, e˙gw¿ ei˙mi.

John 8:58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.

John 10:1 ∆Amh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, oJ mh\ ei˙serco/menoß dia» thvß qu/raß ei˙ß th\n aujlh\n tw◊n proba¿twn, aÓlla» aÓnabai÷nwn aÓllaco/qen, e˙kei√noß kle÷pthß e˙sti« kai« lhØsth/ß.

John 10:1 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.

John 10:7 Ei•pen ou™n pa¿lin aujtoi√ß oJ ∆Ihsouvß, ∆Amh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti ∆Egw¿ ei˙mi hJ qu/ra tw◊n proba¿twn.

John 10:7 Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep.

John 12:24 aÓmh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, e˙a»n mh\ oJ ko/kkoß touv si÷tou pesw»n ei˙ß th\n ghvn aÓpoqa¿nhØ, aujto\ß mo/noß me÷nei: e˙a»n de« aÓpoqa¿nhØ, polu\n karpo\n fe÷rei.

John 12:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.

John 13:16 aÓmh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, Oujk e¶sti douvloß mei÷zwn touv kuri÷ou aujtouv, oujde« aÓpo/stoloß mei÷zwn touv pe÷myantoß aujto/n.

John 13:16 Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him.

John 13:20 aÓmh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, ÔO lamba¿nwn e˙a¿n tina pe÷myw, e˙me« lamba¿nei: oJ de« e˙me« lamba¿nwn, lamba¿nei to\n pe÷myanta¿ me.

John 13:20 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that receiveth whomsoever I send receiveth me; and he that receiveth me receiveth him that sent me.

John 13:21 Tauvta ei˙pw»n oJ ∆Ihsouvß e˙tara¿cqh twˆ◊ pneu/mati, kai« e˙martu/rhse kai« ei•pen, ∆Amh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti ei–ß e˙x uJmw◊n paradw¿sei me.

John 13:21 When Jesus had thus said, he was troubled in spirit, and testified, and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me.

John 14:12 aÓmh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n, oJ pisteu/wn ei˙ß e˙me÷, ta» e¶rga a± e˙gw» poiw◊ kaÓkei√noß poih/sei, kai« mei÷zona tou/twn poih/sei: o¢ti e˙gw» pro\ß to\n pate÷ra mou poreu/omai.

John 14:12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.

John 16:20 aÓmh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti klau/sete kai« qrhnh/sete uJmei√ß, oJ de« ko/smoß carh/setai: uJmei√ß de« luphqh/sesqe, aÓll∆ hJ lu/ph uJmw◊n ei˙ß cara»n genh/setai.

John 16:20 Verily, verily, I say unto you, That ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice: and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy.

John 16:23 kai« e˙n e˙kei÷nhØ thØv hJme÷raˆ e˙me« oujk e˙rwth/sete oujde÷n. aÓmh\n aÓmh\n le÷gw uJmi√n o¢ti o¢sa a·n ai˙th/shte to\n pate÷ra e˙n twˆ◊ ojno/mati÷ mou, dw¿sei uJmi√n.

John 16:23 And in that day ye shall ask me nothing. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you.

Conclusion:

The annihilationist contention that the comma is misplaced in Luke 23:43 in the King James Version—and every other available English translation[ii] on the face of the earth—is impossible.  To affirm that the comma needs to be moved to after the word “today” is simply a product of theological bias against the Biblical truth that New Testament believers are immediately in conscious bliss when they die.  To move the comma requires a rejection of all seventy examples of the “Verily I say unto thee/you” construction in the New Testament. The annihilationist contention that Luke 23:43 should be changed (to “Verily I say unto thee today,”) is not consistent with the Greek syntax of Luke 23:43.

Annihilationists who argue that Luke 23:43 does not say “Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise,” are either ignorant of the evidence or have chosen to reject the evidence.  Luke 23:43 stands as a clear text in favor of the entrance of the saved dead into immediate conscious happiness.  One who denies this truth rejects the Word of the Lord Jesus Christ.  Such a course is very dangerous, for the Son of God, who never lies, has said, “He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day” (John 12:48).


[i]           One notes that in a few of the verses below, when the soi/humin is followed by the hoti indicating direct discourse, the comma found in the English is left out of the Greek.  Of course, the reason for this is the very fact of the (usually untranslated) hoti of direct discourse.  This does not at all change the fact that the amen lego humin is the end of its thought, and a new and distinct thought follows with the hoti.  A pause is still indicated in these verses, and commas are correctly found universally in the King James Version.  Anyone who attempted to support the idea that a clause does not end, and a pause is not indicated, in Luke 23:43, or anywhere else in the New Testament, after the amen lego soi/humin structure because of these verses with a hoti of direct discourse, evidences either abysmal ignorance of Greek or deliberate disingenuousness.

It should also be noted that in Luke 23:43 the ∆Amh\n le÷gw soi of the Textus Receptus receives support from 99.5% of Greek MSS, while the textual corruption aÓmh/n soi le÷gw follows fewer manuscripts than one has fingers on his hand and is syntactically unparalleled anywhere in the NT or LXX.

[ii]           The New World Translation of the Watchtower Society (so-called “Jehovah’s Witnesses”) does not put the comma where the Greek requires it. However, the New World Translation is not a translation.  The combined coursework in New Testament Greek for the entire Watchtower “translation” committee consisted of a single two credit hour course (and no “translator” had ever taken any courses in Hebrew—not to mention Aramaic—at all!).  Thus, their “Bible” does not deserve to be called a translation. Two credit hours of New Testament Greek, by one of seven “translators,” the other six of which had taken as much New Testament Greek as one’s pet dog, cat, or goldfish, does not get the “translation” committee even near to the linguistic capability required to translate the Word of God.  This is apart from other evidences of abysmal ignorance by the “translators,” such as the fact that the majority of them were high school dropouts and not even one had even an undergraduate college degree.  The Watchtower Society attempts to hide the names and the (lack of) qualifications of its “translators” from the public, but information about them can be obtained: for more details on the New World “Translation,” its gross and despicable corruptions, and its “translators,” see Are You Worshipping Jehovah? available at http://faithsaves.net/are-you-worshipping-Jehovah/

More on the topic of the state of the unsaved dead

More Resources Explaining Salvation

More Resources on Evidence for Christianity and Christian Apologetics

About the Author:

Thomas Ross