John 5:34 But I receive not testimony from man:

KJV Verse: 

Jhn 5:34 But I receive not testimony from man: but these things I say, that ye might be saved.

Greek Verse: 

Literal Alternative: 

I, however, do not take evidence from people. Still, I relate these things because you might be rescued.

Explanation of Greek: 

The verb translated as "receive" also means "take". It is used in the same way a court "takes" evidence in English. However, it also means "apprehend with the senses," as we might say in English "I am taking this in." So it is a play on the whole idea of the evidence of John being "obvious" as stated in the last verse.

In other words, the last verse was a red herring not answering the mystery in Jhn 5:32 about who the "other" is who gives evidence regarding Jesus. It is not John as suggested in Jhn 5:33. Christ cannot take that type of evidence.

However, even though it didn't answer the mystery, it wasn't a just tease. Christ says that John's evidence may be able to save their lives.

Wordplay: 

 "Taking evidence" as a court does and "taking in" evidence as perceiving them with the senses, as we might "take in a scene." 

Greek Vocabulary: 

ἐγὼ "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.

δὲ "But" is from de (de), which means "but" and "on the other hand." It is the particle that joins sentences in an adversarial way.

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

παρὰ "From" is from para (para), which means "beside", "from the side of", "from beside,", "from", "issuing from", "near", "by", "with", "along", "past", "beyond", "parallel (geometry)", "like (metaphor)", "a parody of (metaphor)", "precisely at the moment of (time)," and "throughout (time)."

ἀνθρώπου "Man" is from anthrôpos (anthropos), which is "man," and, in plural, "mankind." It also means "humanity" and that which is human and opposed to that which is animal or inanimate.

τὴν μαρτυρίαν "Testimony" is from martyria, which means "testimony," and "evidence."

λαμβάνω (1st sg pres ind act) "Receive" is from lambanô (lambano) means "to take", "to receive", "to apprehend with the senses", "to take hold of," and "to seize." It is also specifically used to mean seized with emotion.

ἀλλὰ "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.

ταῦτα "These things" is from tauta, which is a referring pronoun meaning "these", "this", "that," and "here." It can mean the nearer or the further depending on usage. As an adverb it can mean "therefore" and "that is why."

λέγω (1st sg pres ind act) "I say" is from legô (lego) means "pick up", "choose for oneself", "pick out," and "count," but it used to mean "recount", "tell over", "say", "speak", "teach", "mean", "boast of", "tell of", "recite," nominate," and "command."

ἵνα "That" is from hina (hina), which means "in that place", "there", "where", "when", "that", "in order that", "when," and "because."

ὑμεῖς "Ye" is from hymeis, which are the singular nominative form of the second person, "you."

σωθῆτε (2nd pl aor subj pass) "Might be saved" is sôizô (sozo), which means "save from death", "keep alive", "keep safe", "preserve", "maintain", "keep in mind", "carry off safely," and "rescue."

Related Verses: