But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)The very hairs of your head.—The apparent hyperbole of the figure is but the natural expression of the thought that even the incidents of life that seem most trivial are in very deed working together for good to those that love God. They are not at any moment of their lives to think that they are uncared for by their Father.See Poole on "Matthew 10:31". 1 Samuel 14:45 and the phraseology of the text was in use, and very well known by the Jews; for so they represent God speaking (i);
"do not I number all the hairs of every creature?''
As our Lord applies this particularly to his disciples, his sense is, that they had no reason to be afraid of men, or fear anything that should befall them, for their bearing a faithful testimony to him; for, their valuable lives were under the special and peculiar care of divine providence; not only the days, months, and years of their lives were with God, and put down in his book of purposes and decrees, which could neither be shortened nor lengthened; and not only the more principal, and even all the members of their bodies were written in his book of providence, and a singular care taken of them; but even their very excrescences, the more minute parts, and which were of no great account with them, the "hairs" of their head", even "all" of them, were not only known, but numbered", taken account of; yea, the thing was done already, it was not to be done; a very strong way of setting forth the doctrine of divine providence: a doctrine which the Jews were not unacquainted with, who say (k);
"that the events of man, and accidents which come upon him, , "are all by", or "in the hands of God";''
and (l) that
"nothing is by chance, but all things are "with design";''
or, as they elsewhere say (m),
"a man does not hurt his finger below, but they proclaim concerning it above;''
that is, as the gloss explains it, , "it is decreed" concerning it: which comes very near to the phrase here used.
(i) Pesikta, fol. 18. 4. apud Drusium in loc. (k) Piske Tosaphot ad Cetubot, art. 119. (l) Kimchi in Psalm 104.4. (m) T. Bab. Cholin, fol. 7. 2.But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Matthew 10:30. Ὑμῶν δέ] Put first by way of emphasis. Euth. Zigabenus aptly observes: ὑμεῖς δὲ τοσοῦτόν ἐστε τίμιοι, ὥστε καὶ πάσας ὑμῶν τρίχας ἠριθμημένας εἶναι παρὰ θεοῦ … καὶ λεπτομερῶς οἶδε πάντα τὰ καθʼ ὑμᾶς. Poetical expression for the providentia specialissima. Comp. Luke 21:18; Acts 27:34; 1 Samuel 14:45; 2 Samuel 14:11; 1 Kings 1:52; Plato, Legg. x. p. 900 C.Matthew 10:30. ὑμῶν, emphatic position: your hairs.—τρίχες: of little value all together, can be lost without detriment to life or health.—πᾶσαι, all, every one without exception.—ἠριθμημέναι, counted. Men count only valuable things, gold pieces, sheep, etc. Note the perfect participle. They have been counted once for all, and their number noted; one hair cannot go amissing unobserved.Matthew 10:30. Ὑμῶν, your) used antithetically.—αἱ τρίχες, the hairs) which you yourselves care little about. Who cares about the hairs once pulled out by the comb? A proverbial saying concerning a very small matter.Verse 30. - But the very hairs of your head. "Your" emphatic, in contrast to the care bestowed on sparrows. (For the thought, compare not only the parallel passage, Luke 12:7, but also Luke 21:18; Acts 27:34.) Are all numbered. Perhaps long since (ἠριθμημέναι εἰσίν). When Job complained the Lord answered him, "Many hairs have! made on man, and for every single hair its own pit, that not two hairs should draw their sustenance from one pit... shall I make no mistake about this, and vet make a mistake in thy name and spell it not Ijob (Job, איוב), but Ojeb (enemy, אויב)?" (Talm. Bab., 'Baba Bathra,' 16a).
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