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Act 1:5 For John truly baptized with water;
KJV Verse:

Act 1:5 For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.

Greek Verse:

Act 1:5 ὅτι Ἰωάνης μὲν ἐβάπτισεν ὕδατι, ὑμεῖς δὲ ἐν πνεύματι βαπτισθήσεσθε ἁγίῳ οὐ μετὰ πολλὰς ταύτας ἡμέρας.

Literal Alternative:

Because John dunked in water. You yourselves, however, into spirit will be dunked holy. Not after many  more days.

Hidden Meaning:

This verse helps us understand what Jesus means by being "baptized"  (explained in more detail in this article). "Baptized" is an untranslated Greek word that means "dipping." The phrases describing baptism as "with water" and "with the Holy Ghost" are very different and nether as the preposition usually translated as "with."  The "with" in "with water" comes from the dative form of the word water, which means "with" in the sense of water being an instrument. However, the "with Ghost/Spirit" is from the preposition that primarily means "into" but can also mean "with" in the sense of "along with" and "by" in the sense of "near."

The verses does have the preposition usually translated as "with," but none of the popular English translations actually translated it. It is used with the "days" phrase and means "after" when used with periods of time.


ὅτι  (adv/conj) "For" is hoti, which introduces a statement of fact "with regard to the fact that", "seeing that," and acts as a causal adverb meaning "for what", "because", "since," and "wherefore."

Ἰωάνης (noun sg masc gen) "John" is from Ioannes, which is the Greek form of the name "John." -

μὲν ( partic) "Truly" is men, which is generally used to express certainty and means "indeed", "certainly", "surely," and "truly." Used with the conjunction de, as it is here, it points out the specific word being contrast after the conjunction. In English, we usually say, one one hand...on the others... See the article here for specific uses with other particles.

ἐβάπτισεν ( verb 3rd sg aor ind act ) "baptized" is baptizo, which means "to dip", "to plunge", "to be drenched", "to be drowned," and "getting in deep water."

ὕδατι, ( noun sg neut dat )  "With water" is  hydor, which means "water", "spring water", "drinking water", "rain water", "rain", "time running out" (from the water clocks used in courts), "liquid," the constellation Aquarius, the winter solstice, and a place with mineral waters.

ὑμεῖς  (pron 2nd pl nom) "You" is hymeis (humeis), which are the singular nominative form of the second person, "you."

δὲ (conj) "But" is de which means "but" and "on the other hand." It is the particle that joins sentences in an adversarial way but can also be a weak connective ("and") and explanation of cause ("so") and a condition ("if").

ἐν  (prep) "In" is en, which means "in", "on", "at", "by", "among", "within", "surrounded by", "in one's hands", "in one's power," and "with".With the accusative, it means "into," "on," and "for."

πνεύματι ( noun sg neut dat) "Spirit" is pneuma, which means "blast", "wind", "breath", "the breath of life", "divine inspiration", "a spiritual or immaterial being," and "the spirit" of a man.

βαπτισθήσεσθε ( verb 2nd pl fut ind pass ) "shall be baptized" is baptizo, which means "to dip", "to plunge", "to be drenched", "to be drowned," and "getting in deep water."

ἁγίῳ ( adj sg neut dat ) "Holy" is hagios, which means "devoted to the gods", "pure", "holy," and on the negative side "accursed."

οὐ (partic) "Not" is ou which is the negative adverb for facts and statements, negating both single 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.

μετὰ (prep) Untranslated is meta, which means "with", "in the midst of", "among", "between", "in common", "along with", "by the aid of", "in one's dealings with", "into the middle of", "coming into", "in pursuit of", "after", "behind", "according to,"  "after", "behind",  and "next afterward."

πολλὰς ( adj pl fem acc ) "Many" is polus, which means "many (in number)", "great (in size or power or worth)," and "large (of space)." As an adverb, it means "far", "very much", "a great way," and "long."

ταύτας ( adj pl fem acc ) "Hence" is 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."

ἡμέρας. (adj pl fem acc ) "Days" is hemera, which, as a noun, means "day" "a state or time of life", "a time (poetic)", "day break" and "day time." It is also and also has a second meaning, of "quiet", "tame (animals)", "cultivated (crops)," and "civilized (people)."

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About this Site

I started this project over a decade ago. The initial goal was to satisfy my own curiosity about how the original Greek of Jesus's words was translated into English comparing it to my work in translating ancient Chinese. 

This site does not promote any religious point of view about Christianity. I purposely use nonreligious sources for Greek translation.  My goal is simply to identify how Jesus used words. His use of Greek words somewhat unique since his words were spoken, not written.

The range of quality of the articles on this site reflects that it is a personal site, not a commercial one. No one proofreads my work. Some articles are over a decade old when I knew much less ancient Greek. Matthew articles are best since I have updated them all at least once. The ones in Mark are the oldest and poorest. Luke is not yet complete.