John 10:15 As the Father knoweth me,

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

As the Father recognizes me not only do I recognize the Father, but I also establish my spirit over the flock.>

KJV : 

Jhn 10:15 As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep.

Interesting and Hidden Aspects: 

Christ communicates similar ideas in different words to expose a range of meaning. Many times later in John, Christ talks about he and the Father "glorifying" each other. The term used (doxazo) has the sense of recognizing someone in the sense of honoring them, as we say someone was recognized by an award. Interestingly, the word translated here as "knows" ginosko has a very similar meaning and it can be translated in much the same way but the focus is a little less on "honoring" someone and more on "knowing" someone.

The word translated as "lays down" (tithemi) was translated just a little earlier in this section (Jhn 10:11) as "giveth," but both contexts capture the same idea, sacrificing your life. However, the translation here. 'lays down," is closer to the meaning of the verb, which primarily means "to place." However, this interpretation seems like a post resurrection insight to the verse's meaning. It simple meaning is much clearer.

The biggest problem with the sacrificing life interpretation is that the word translated as "life" means "breath" and is often translated as "soul." It is one of three different Greek words translated as "life" in the NT, all with different meanings in Greek. Christ doesn't use this word to refer to physical death and actually contrasts the loss of the soul with the loss of physical life in Mat 10:28. This doesn't prove that he didn't have this meaning in mind, but it isn't what those around him heard when he said this.

The sense of this final phrase is that a leader's spirit or soul is laid down over the flock, like an spiritual blanket. In the context of the "truth" teaching of this section, the the sense is that Christ's leadership provides a framework for his followers to think and see the world.

Related Verses: 

Greek Vocabulary: 

καθὼς "As" is from kathos, which means "even as", "how", and, in relating to time, "as" and "when."

γινώσκει (2nd sg pres ind mp or 3rd sg pres ind act) "Knows," is from gignôskô (ginosko) which means "to learn to know", "to know by reflection or observation", "discern", "distinguish", "recognize", "form a judgment", "know carnally", "make known", "celebrate", "understand," and "to perceive."

με "Me" is from eme, which means "I", "me", and "my".

πατὴρ "The Father" is from pater (pater), which means "father", "grandfather", "author", "parent," and "forefathers."

κἀγὼ "I" is from kago, a contraction of kai ego. "And" is from kai, which is the conjunction joining phrases and clauses, "and," or "but." After words implying sameness, "as" (the same opinion as you). Used in series, joins positive with negative "Not only...but also." Also used to give emphasis, "even", "also," and "just." "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."

γινώσκω (1st sg pres ind act) "Knows," is from gignôskô (ginosko) which means "to learn to know", "to know by reflection or observation," and "to perceive."

τὸν πατέρα, "The Father" is from pater (pater), which means "father", "grandfather", "author", "parent," and "forefathers."

καὶ "And" is from kai, which is the conjunction joining phrases and clauses, "and," or "but." After words implying sameness, "as" (the same opinion as you). Used in series, joins positive with negative "Not only...but also." Also used to give emphasis, "even", "also," and "just."

τὴν ψυχήν "Life" is from psuchê (psyche), which means "breath", "life", "self", "spirit," and "soul." It has the clear sense of the conscious self and is often translated as "life" in the Gospels. It is also used to describe "the spirit" of things. It is often translated as "soul."

μου "My" is from mou, which mean "my," or "mine."

τίθημι "Lay down" is from tithêmi (tithemi) which means "to put", "to place", "to propose", "to suggest", "o deposit", "to set up", "to dedicate", "to assign", "to award", "to agree upon", "to institute", "to establish", "to make", "to work", "to prepare oneself," and a metaphor for "to put in one's mind." In a military sense, it means both "to bear arms" and "to lay down and surrender." It also means to "lay in a grave," and "bury." In writing, it means putting words on paper.

ὑπὲρ "For" is from huper (hyper), which means "over" (of place), "above' (in a state of rest), "off' (ships at sea), "over" and "across (in a state of motion), "over", "beyond", "on behalf of one (metaphor), "for", "instead of", "in the name of", "as a representative of" (in an entreaty), "for" and "because of" (of the cause of motive), "concerning", "exceeding" "above" and "beyond" (of measure), "above" and "upwards" (of numbers), "before" and "earlier than" (of time), "over much" and "beyond measure" (as an adverb), "for" and "in deference of" (doing a thing), and "above measure."

τῶν προβάτων. "The sheep" is from probaton, which means any domesticated four-footed animal, "sheep", "cattle", "herds," and "flocks."