Matthew 20:20
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Then the mother of Zebedee's sons came to Jesus with her sons and, kneeling down, asked a favor of him.

New Living Translation
Then the mother of James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came to Jesus with her sons. She knelt respectfully to ask a favor.

English Standard Version
Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came up to him with her sons, and kneeling before him she asked him for something.

New American Standard Bible
Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came to Jesus with her sons, bowing down and making a request of Him.

King James Bible
Then came to him the mother of Zebedee's children with her sons, worshipping him, and desiring a certain thing of him.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Then the mother of Zebedee's sons approached Him with her sons. She knelt down to ask Him for something.

International Standard Version
Then the mother of Zebedee's sons came to Jesus with her sons. She bowed down in front of him to ask him for a favor.

NET Bible
Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came to him with her sons, and kneeling down she asked him for a favor.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came near to him, she and her sons, and she worshiped him and she was asking him something.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Then the mother of Zebedee's sons came to Jesus with her two sons. She bowed down in front of him to ask him for a favor.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came to him with her sons, worshipping him and desiring a certain thing of him.

King James 2000 Bible
Then came to him the mother of Zebedee's children with her sons, worshiping him, and desiring a certain thing of him.

American King James Version
Then came to him the mother of Zebedees children with her sons, worshipping him, and desiring a certain thing of him.

American Standard Version
Then came to him the mother of the sons of Zebedee with her sons, worshipping him , and asking a certain thing of him.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Then came to him the mother of the sons of Zebedee with her sons, adoring and asking something of him.

Darby Bible Translation
Then came to him the mother of the sons of Zebedee, with her sons, doing homage, and asking something of him.

English Revised Version
Then came to him the mother of the sons of Zebedee with her sons, worshipping him, and asking a certain thing of him.

Webster's Bible Translation
Then came to him the mother of Zebedee's children, with her sons, worshiping him, and desiring a certain thing of him.

Weymouth New Testament
Then the mother of the sons of Zabdi came to Him with her sons, and knelt before Him to make a request of Him.

World English Bible
Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came to him with her sons, kneeling and asking a certain thing of him.

Young's Literal Translation
Then came near to him the mother of the sons of Zebedee, with her sons, bowing and asking something from him,
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

20:20-28 The sons of Zebedee abused what Christ said to comfort the disciples. Some cannot have comforts but they turn them to a wrong purpose. Pride is a sin that most easily besets us; it is sinful ambition to outdo others in pomp and grandeur. To put down the vanity and ambition of their request, Christ leads them to the thoughts of their sufferings. It is a bitter cup that is to be drunk of; a cup of trembling, but not the cup of the wicked. It is but a cup, it is but a draught, bitter perhaps, but soon emptied; it is a cup in the hand of a Father, Joh 18:11. Baptism is an ordinance by which we are joined to the Lord in covenant and communion; and so is suffering for Christ, Eze 20:37; Isa 48:10. Baptism is an outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace; and so is suffering for Christ, for unto us it is given, Php 1:29. But they knew not what Christ's cup was, nor what his baptism. Those are commonly most confident, who are least acquainted with the cross. Nothing makes more mischief among brethren, than desire of greatness. And we never find Christ's disciples quarrelling, but something of this was at the bottom of it. That man who labours most diligently, and suffers most patiently, seeking to do good to his brethren, and to promote the salvation of souls, most resembles Christ, and will be most honoured by him to all eternity. Our Lord speaks of his death in the terms applied to the sacrifices of old. It is a sacrifice for the sins of men, and is that true and substantial sacrifice, which those of the law faintly and imperfectly represented. It was a ransom for many, enough for all, working upon many; and, if for many, then the poor trembling soul may say, Why not for me?

Pulpit Commentary

Verses 20-28. - Ambitious request of the mother of the sons of Zebedee. (Mark 10:35-45.) Verse 20. - Then. The incident seems to have arisen from the promise of the twelve thrones in Matthew 19:28, and is significant as showing how utterly misunderstood was the true nature of the Messianic kingdom. The mother of Zebedee's children. The mother of James and John was named Salome (Matthew 27:56 compared with Mark 15:40; Mark 16:1); she had left her husband Zebedee (Mark 1:20) in Galilee (unless, as is more probable from the terms in which she is introduced, he was now dead), and followed Jesus in the band of holy women who attended on him and ministered to him of their substance. Some have thought that she was the sister of the Virgin Mary, so interpreting John 19:25. St. Mark makes the two apostles present their own request; and doubtless they put their mother forward, coming with her to the presence of Jesus, and using her agency in this somewhat delicate matter. Our evangelist was present on the occasion, and his precision may be relied on in this detail. Worshipping him. Making the customary prostration before a superior. A certain thing (τι). She did not at first make any definite request, but endeavoured to get Jesus to promise to grant her what she asked. According to St. Mark, the sons say plainly, "We would that thou shouldest do for us whatever we shall desire." Thus Bathsheba addressed David. "I desire one small petition of thee; I pray thee, say me not nay" (1 Kings 2:20). Salome is plainly intending to ask some great thing.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Then came to him the mother of Zebedee's children,.... Whose name was Salome, as may be concluded from Matthew 27:56 compared with Mark 15:40. She is not called the wife of Zebedee, who might be now dead, but the mother of his children, his two sons, as the Arabic version renders it: James and John, and who were the disciples of Christ: it is not certain, that Zebedee was ever a follower of him; and therefore the woman is described by her relation to her children, and not her husband; and the rather, because it was in their name, and on their account, that she came to Jesus. She is said to be the sister of Joseph, the husband of Mary, the mother of our Lord; and if so, might hope to succeed in her request, on the foot of relation; as also, since she herself had been a constant follower of, and attendant on him; and especially, inasmuch as her sons were his favourite disciples;

with her sons; her two sons, James and John, whom Mark mentions by name:

worshipping him,

and desiring a certain thing of him; that is, she came in a very submissive manner to him, either bowed unto him, or kneeled down before him, or threw herself at his feet, and signified that she had a single favour, and a very considerable one, to ask of him. Mark represents the case thus, that her two sons, James and John, came to Christ, and that they themselves spoke to him, and addressed him in this manner: "Master, we would that thou shouldest do for us, whatsoever we shall desire": which was a very odd request, both as to the matter and manner of it; that they should ask; and insist upon everything to be done for them, they desired; and suggest, that they expected that he would promise them this, before they declared the particular favour they had to ask of him. The matter may be reconciled thus. These two disciples, having observed what Christ had said concerning the twelve disciples sitting on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel, and what he had just related, concerning his rising again the third day, which they might understand of some display of his glory; and concluding from all this, that the setting up of his temporal monarchy was at hand, inform their mother of it, and move to her, to use her interest with Christ, in their favour: and which they did, partly to shun the envy and ill will of the rest of the disciples; and partly, to conceal their own pride and vanity; as also, they might think a request from her, on their behalf, would be more easily granted: accordingly, she agreeing to the motion, they all three came, as Matthew relates, and the mother is the mouth, and speaks for her sons; so that they may be said to make such a request by her, she representing them; or they joined in the petition with her; or as soon as she had made it, they seconded it, and made it their own.



Matthew 20:20 Additional Commentaries
Context
A Mother's Request
20Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came to Jesus with her sons, bowing down and making a request of Him. 21And He said to her, "What do you wish?" She said to Him, "Command that in Your kingdom these two sons of mine may sit one on Your right and one on Your left."…
Cross References
Matthew 4:21
Going on from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John. They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets. Jesus called them,

Matthew 8:2
A man with leprosy came and knelt before him and said, "Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean."

Matthew 10:2
These are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon (who is called Peter) and his brother Andrew; James son of Zebedee, and his brother John;

Matthew 27:56
Among them were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Joseph, and the mother of Zebedee's sons.

Mark 10:35
Then James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came to him. "Teacher," they said, "we want you to do for us whatever we ask."
Treasury of Scripture

Then came to him the mother of Zebedees children with her sons, worshipping him, and desiring a certain thing of him.

came.

Mark 10:35 And James and John, the sons of Zebedee, come to him, saying, Master, …

the mother.

Matthew 4:21 And going on from there, he saw other two brothers, James the son …

Matthew 27:56 Among which was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James and …

Mark 15:40 There were also women looking on afar off: among whom was Mary Magdalene, …

Salome. worshipping.

Matthew 2:11 And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child …

Matthew 8:2 And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped him, saying, Lord, …

Matthew 14:33 Then they that were in the ship came and worshipped him, saying, …

Matthew 15:25 Then came she and worshipped him, saying, Lord, help me.

Matthew 28:17 And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted.

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