and do not think that you can say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father,’ because I say to you that God is able to produce children of Abraham from these stones. Bible see other translations

“to yourselves.” This phrase could also be understood in the Greek as, ‘among yourselves.’ Thus, they would be saying this to each other.

“these stones.” The Jews claimed that salvation was in large part due to their being descendants of Abraham, and John was repudiating that belief. His sharp rebuke was made even sharper by his reference to “these stones.” If anything is common in Israel it is stones, and the Bible has many, many references to them. Solomon’s wealth was described by saying that he made silver to be in Jerusalem as “stones” (1 Kings 10:27). Dashing one’s foot against a stone was common and painful (Ps. 91:12). When a dignitary would come through the area, the roads would have to be cleared of stones (Isa. 62:10), and to plant one would have to get the stones out of the vineyard (Isa. 5:1-2). This record is also in Luke 3:8.

Commentary for: Matthew 3:9