Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Luke 18:25

For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Covetousness;   Kingdom of Heaven;   Needle;   Rich, the;   Riches;   Salvation;   The Topic Concordance - Eternal Life;   Following;   Forsaking;   Kingdom of God;   Trust;   Wealth;  
Dictionaries:
Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Wealth;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Hearing the Word of God;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Needle;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Zacchaeus;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Luke, Gospel of;   Needle;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Perfection;   Possession;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Animals;   Camel, Camel's Hair;   Common Life;   Discourse;   Ebionism (2);   Metaphors;   Needle;   Paradox;   Property (2);   Proverbs ;   Wealth;   Wealth (2);   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Needle's Eye;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Chief parables and miracles in the bible;   Wilson's Dictionary of Bible Types - Camel;   Needle;   Rich (and forms);  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Camel;   Games;   Go;   Needle;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Camel;  
Devotionals:
Chip Shots from the Ruff of Life - Devotion for August 17;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

It as easier for a camel - Instead of καμηλον, a camel, S, and four other MSS., read καμιλον, a cable. See the same reading noticed on the parallel place, Matthew 19:24; (note).

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Bibliographical Information
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Luke 18:25". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/luke-18.html. 1832.

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

For it is easier for a camel to enter in through a needle's eye, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

The sheer impossibility of a camel going through the eye of a needle forces the deduction that this is a hyperbole, employed to stress the difficulty of a rich man's being saved.

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Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
Bibliographical Information
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on Luke 18:25". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/luke-18.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

For it is easier for a camel,.... These words were spoken to the disciples again, and were a second address to them, after they had shown astonishment at the former; See Gill on Matthew 19:24 and See Gill on Mark 10:24.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on Luke 18:25". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/luke-18.html. 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

easier for a camel, etc. — a proverbial expression denoting literally a thing impossible, but figuratively, very difficult.

Copyright Statement
These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Luke 18:25". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/luke-18.html. 1871-8.

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

Through a needle‘s eye (δια τρηματος βελονηςdia trēmatos belonēs). Both words are old. ΤρημαTrēma means a perforation or hole or eye and in the N.T. only here and Matthew 19:24. ελονηBelonē means originally the point of a spear and then a surgeon‘s needle. Here only in the N.T. Mark 10:25; Matthew 19:24 have ραπιδοςrhaphidos for needle. This is probably a current proverb for the impossible. The Talmud twice speaks of an elephant passing through the eye of a needle as being impossible.

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The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)
Bibliographical Information
Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on Luke 18:25". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/luke-18.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Vincent's Word Studies

Camel

See on Matthew 19:24.

To go through the eye of a needle ( διὰ τρήματος βελόνης εἰσελθεῖν )

Rev., more literally, to enter in through a needle's eye. Both Matthew and Mark use another word for needle ( ῥαφίς ); see on Mark 10:25. Luke alone has βελόνη , which, besides being an older term, is the peculiar word for the surgical needle. The other word is condemned by the Greek grammarians as barbarous.

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The text of this work is public domain.
Bibliographical Information
Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on Luke 18:25". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/vnt/luke-18.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

The Fourfold Gospel

For it is easier for a camel to enter in through a needle's eye1, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

  1. For it is easier for a camel to enter in through a needle's eye,
  2. than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. See .

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website. These files were made available by Mr. Ernie Stefanik. First published online in 1996 at The Restoration Movement Pages.
Bibliographical Information
J. W. McGarvey and Philip Y. Pendleton. "Commentary on Luke 18:25". "The Fourfold Gospel". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tfg/luke-18.html. Standard Publishing Company, Cincinnati, Ohio. 1914.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

25 For it is easier for a camel to go through a needle’s eye, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

Ver. 25. It is easier for a camel] Caveant ergo divites (saith an interpreter) et solicite; mane, vesperi, interdiu, noctu, secum de periculosa vitae suae ratione commententur. Let rich men therefore weigh their danger, and beware.

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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Luke 18:25". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/luke-18.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

See Poole on "Luke 18:18"

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Bibliographical Information
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Luke 18:25". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/luke-18.html. 1685.

Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible

“For it is easier for a camel to enter in through a needle’s eye, than for a rich man to enter into the Kingly Rule of God.”

Then Jesus spoke the immortal words known to Christians world over. ‘It is easier for a camel to enter in through a needle’s eye, than for a rich man to enter into the Kingly Rule of God.’ There is no reason for us to take these words as having any other than their natural meaning. All could imagine the eye of a needle. All could visualise a camel coming to a rather abrupt halt as it faced it, and baying, ‘Don’t be ridiculous’. It was simply stating the extremeness of the impossibility. And there is no real evidence of any such thing as a ‘needle gate’ in Jerusalem at that time, nor a need to turn to an obscure word which might mean hawser. Jesus really was thinking of a camel and a rather large needle.

Why then did Jesus use this illustration of a camel? Apart from displaying a sense of humour and giving a picture really worth remembering, the whole point was that the camel viewed the eye of the needle like a rich man viewed the challenge of life without riches, as not worth taking trouble over because it was impossible. It took one look at the eye of the needle and then turned languidly away, just as the rich man, when he was inspired by better thoughts, would take one look at the problems that might arise, and then give up. He was safely settled down in his own comforts. He did not need to alter anything. But the result was that unless he removed all dependence on them his urges towards goodness would always end up with his lying back and relaxing again, putting it off until another day. Like the camel he would turn away from the open door because going through it demanded too much from him. It would all be far too difficult and far too demanding. And then like the rich man in the parable he would die with his position unresolved.

So if we have not learned the lesson about riches from the unrighteous estate manager, and from the rich man and Lazarus, let us now learn it from the real life example of this rich ruler. Let us learn that our wealth and our security of life and whatever else it is that we consider important to us can be a curse to us and not a blessing. For they can prevent our being thrown upon God. What we too must do is thrust aside whatever it is that is holding us back, and then we too will be able to ‘inherit eternal life’.

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These files are public domain.
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Bibliographical Information
Pett, Peter. "Commentary on Luke 18:25". "Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pet/luke-18.html. 2013.

The Expositor's Greek Testament

Luke 18:25. : each evangelist has his own expression here.— from , (or ), to pierce, bore through; hence , penetrating, clear; , the point of a spear.

 

 

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Bibliographical Information
Nicol, W. Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on Luke 18:25". The Expositor's Greek Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/egt/luke-18.html. 1897-1910.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

camel. See note on Matthew 19:24. Greek. dia. App-104. Luke 18:1.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Luke 18:25". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/luke-18.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

For it is easier for a camel to go through a needle's eye, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. For it is easier for a camel to go through a needle's eye, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God - a proverbial expression, denoting literally a thing impossible, but figuratively a thing very difficult.

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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Luke 18:25". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/luke-18.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(25) Through a needle’s eye.—The Greek word for “needle” in the better MSS. differs from that in St. Matthew and St. Mark, and is a more classical word. That which the others use was unknown to Attic writers. The fact, small as it is, takes its place among the signs of St. Luke’s culture.

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Bibliographical Information
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Luke 18:25". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/luke-18.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

For it is easier for a camel to go through a needle's eye, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.
a camel
Some render a cable; but it may justly be doubted whether [ ()] ever was so translated before, for the word for a cable, as the scholiast on Aristophanes expressly affirms, is written [kamilos] not with an "e" [eta], but with an "i" [iota.] Some few MSS., it is true, have got the word [kamilos] into the text, but it is evidently an attempted improvement.
Matthew 23:24
Reciprocal: Matthew 5:20 - ye;  Matthew 7:21 - shall;  Matthew 13:22 - the deceitfulness;  Matthew 19:24 - It;  Mark 10:25 - GeneralLuke 1:53 - and;  Luke 8:14 - and are;  Luke 16:19 - rich;  1 Corinthians 1:26 - not many mighty

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Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Luke 18:25". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/luke-18.html.