This site examines Christ's words in the ancient Greek so you can make your own translation. Our alternative translations and explanations emphasize the humor, wordplay, and hidden meanings lost in translation. 

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Jhn 8:12 I am the light of the world:

Jhn 8:12 I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

 I am the bright spot of the world order. Someone following me will not ever wander in the dark. Rather, he will hold onto the knowledge of existence. 

 The Greek concepts of light and dark are very closely related to knowledge and ignorance. We have this same sense in English when we say things such as "when he was thinking, a light went on" and "he is in the dark." 

The word translated as "world" is kosmos, which means specifically, the world order. Christ  uses it to refer to the powers-that-be in this world. He contrasts it over and over again to concept of "heaven," which is perhaps translated as the "universe" or "universal." 

Christ makes the point several times that he is not "of the world," most clearly in  Jhn 17:16. When he say's "I am the light of the world," he is not saying that he is part of the world. Instead, he setting himself apart from the world, a bright spot in a place that is often in darkness, that is, ignorance.

 The negative here  about walking in the dark is a double negative. It uses both negatives in Greek, the one for facts and opinion, what is seen and believed. By using both, Christ emphasized the two different meaning of "light" and "darkness." The objective light that we see by and the subjective light we understand the world through. 

The Greek verb "to have" has a much stronger sense of possession and holding onto something than the English verb, which has many generic "helper" functions in language that the Greek does not have. Often, using the verb "hold" instead of "have" makes this clearer. 

 

Ἐγώ "I" is from ego, which is the first person singular pronoun meaning "I". It also means "I at least," "for my part," "indeed," and for myself.

εἰμι (1st sg pres ind act) "Am" is from eimi (eimi), which means "to be," "to exist," "to be the case," and "is possible." (The future form is esomai. The 3rd person present indicative is "esti.")

τὸ φῶς "The light" is from phos, which means both "light" and is the metaphor for "knowledge."

τοῦ κόσμου: "Of the world" is from kosmos, which mean "order," "good order," "ruler," "world order," "universe," and "the world of men." 

  ἀκολουθῶν  (part sg pres act masc nom) "He that followeth" is from akoloutheô (akoloutheo), which means "to follow," and "to go with." It also means "to be guided by" and means following a leader as a disciple.

μοι "Me" is from moi, which means "I", "me", and "my". 

οὐ "Not" is from οὐ ou which is the negative adverb for facts and statements, negating both singles words and sentences. The other negative adverb, μή applies to will and thought; οὐ denies, μή rejects; οὐ is absolute, μή relative; οὐ objective, μή subjective.

μὴ "Not" is from mê (me), which is the negative used in prohibitions and expressions of doubt meaning "not" and "no." As οὐ (ou) negates fact and statement; μή rejects, οὐ denies; μή is relative, οὐ absolute; μή subjective, οὐ objective.

περιπατήσῃ (3rd sg aor subj act) "Walk" is from peripateô (peripateo), which means "to walk up and down," "to walk about," and "to walk about while teaching."

ἐν "In" is from en, which means "in," "on," "at," "by," "among," "within," "surrounded by," "in one's hands", "in one's power," and "with".

τῇ σκοτίᾳ,  "Darkness" is skotia, which means both "darkness" and is the metaphor for "ignorance."

ἀλλ᾽"But" is from alla (alla), which means "otherwise," "but," "still," "at least," "except," "yet,"  nevertheless," "rather," "moreover," and "nay." It denotes an exception or a simple opposition.

ἕξει  (3rd sg fut ind act) "Shall have" is from echô (echo), which means "to have," "to hold," "to possess," "to keep," "to have charge of," "to maintain," "to hold fast," "to bear," "to keep close," "to keep safe," and "to have means to do."

τὸ φῶς"The light" is from phos, which means both "light" and is the metaphor for "knowledge."

τῆς ζωῆς. "Of life" is from zôê (zoe), which means "living," "substance," "property," "existence," and, incidentally, "the scum on milk." It has the sense of how we say "make a living" to mean property. Homer used it more to mean the opposite of death. 

 

Christ's Words Posts in Verse Order

  • Gospel of John: Most recent posts in current format.
  • Gospel of Mark: Almost entire Gospel with later posts in current format. 
  • Gospel of Matthew: Complete Gospel but more primitive posts, being updated through the In His Own Words project.

Christ: In His Own Words

Imagine Christ addressing an audience today describing his life and message.

Let me start by saying that for now, we must let go of what we think is "proper." It's the only way we can see everything through to the finish. 

I let everything go by walking into the desert. After a little while I was so hungry that I was tempted to eat stones, but I discovered that, God's words filled me with more life than food ever could.

Filled with God's word, I was tempted to test the powers that I discovered within myself by braving death, but those same words told me that we cannot test the source of my power, God.

God has the power to test us, We don't have the power to test him. 

Thinking about my being the Christ, the Messiah, I was tempted use my power to free my people, rule a kingdom, build an empire, maybe even write a book. I saw that these desires were my person demons.

I put my demons out of my mind, humbling myself to my Father's will, putting Him above everything else. 

 

Most Recent Verses

Jhn 8:12 I am the light of the world:

 I am the bright spot of the world order. Someone following me will not ever wander in the dark. Rather, he will hold onto the knowledge of existence. 

Jhn 8:11 Neither do I condemn thee:

Nor do I come down on you. Carry on.  From now on, don't make this mistake.

Jhn 8:10 Woman, where are those thine accusers?

 Where are they? No one has chosen against you? 

Jhn 8:7 He that is without sin among you,

 The unerring of you throws the first rock at her. 

Jhn 7:38 He that believeth on me

The writings have spoken of the one believing in me. From the emptiness within him, the streams of the changing time can perpetually change. 

Jhn 7:37 If any man thirst,

If anyone might  [say] "I have a longing," come to me and celebrate. 

Jhn 7:34 Ye shall seek me,

 You are going to look for me and not only are you not going to discover me but where I am you lack the power to proceed. 

Jhn 7:33 Yet a little while am I with you

 For a little time I am with you as I am going to the one who sent me.

Jhn 7:29 But I know him:

 I have seen him because I am from him. That one sent me. 

Jhn 7:29 But I know him:

 I have seen him because I am from him. That one sent me. 

Jhn 7:28 Ye both know me,

Not only have you seen me, but you have also seen where I am from and [that] I did not start out for myself. However, it is no secret that you have not seen the one has sent me. 

Jhn 7:24 Judge not according to the appearance,

Don't decide based how things look. Instead, decide [by] deciding [i.e. interpreting] the law. 

Jhn 7:23 If a man on the sabbath day receive circumcision,

Whenever a person gets a circle cut away on the Lord's day, [he does it] so that he might not violate the traditions of Moses. You are all upset at me because I made the entire man whole on the Lord's day.

Jhn 7:22 Moses therefore gave unto you circumcision;

 Through this [the law], Moses has given you circumcision--not that it is from Moses but it is from the patriarchs--and on the Sabbath, you cut off and hem in a man on all sides. 

Jhn 7:21 I have done one work,

 One task I have performed and all of you wonder.