In Hebrews 7:6 several versions translate Melchizedek as “receiving tithes” in the plural (KVJ, NKJV, ESV, HCSB, ASV, and YLT) while many other versions have it in the singular “collected a tenth.” (NIV, NLT, NASB, and CEV) Is it acceptable to translate this verb either way? Does the Greek verb δεδεκάτωκεν from δεκατόω [Strongs 1183] allow for both a singular or plural translation?
I ask the question because this section (Heb 7:1-10) is referring to both the event in Genesis 14 of Melchizedek and Abraham and also to the Levites who received tithes continually and the author of Hebrews uses the same cognate δεκάτη [Strongs 1181] to refer to both situations (Hebrews 7:2,4,8,9). I’m curious to know what rules of Greek grammar help decide the best way to translate δεδεκάτωκεν in Hebrews 7:6?
NKJV but he whose genealogy is not derived from them received tithes from Abraham and blessed him who had the promises.
ESV But this man who does not have his descent from them received tithes from Abraham and blessed him who had the promises.
NASB But the one whose genealogy is not traced from them collected a tenth from Abraham and blessed the one who had the promises.
NIV This man, however, did not trace his descent from Levi, yet he collected a tenth from Abraham and blessed him who had the promises.