John 10:12 But he that is an hireling,

Spoken to: 

audience

Context: 

Jesus says that he is the door of the sheep and that he seeks to give others an extraordinary life by dedicating himself to them.

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

The one hired, just not being a shepherd, to him the sheep privately do not belong, he views the wolf approaching not only leaves the sheep but also flees and not only does the wolf snatch them up but he scatters [them].

My Takeaway: 

We take risks for what we own privately.

KJV : 

John 10:12 But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep.

NIV : 

John 10:12 The hired hand is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it.

What is Lost in Translation: 

The beginning of this verse emphasizes the hired hand's lack of private ownership. When the Greek verb "to be" has a genitive object, it means "belongs to." Here, the object is "him." The word translated as "own" is in a form can be the adverb, "privately." So the clause means literally, "To him, the sheep privately do not belong."

Jesus uses an uncommon word translated as "see" here. This word means "to view as a spectator," and it is used to show the lack of involvement between the viewer and the thing viewed.  Jesus often uses this word to describe those viewing him. So this is a

Another

Possible Symbolic Meaning: 

When something is not "your own" that you are not personally attached to it. Ownership is a part of caring. Private property is necessary to take a risk for something. The term "shepherd" is a symbol for leaders in general, so leaders must have some type of ownership of their followers to take risks for them. The hired hand, who has no ownership in the herd doesn't protect what is not his own against destruction. He protects what is his own, his life.

Related Verses: 

Greek Vocabulary: 

[821 verses](article sg masc nom)  "He" is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the").  -

μισθωτὸς [2 verses](adj sg masc nom) "A hireling" is from misthrotos, which means "hired", "hired servant", "hireling," and [military] "mercenary."

καὶ [1089 verses](conj/adv) "And" is 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."

οὐκ [269 verses](partic) "Not" is ou , 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.

ὢν [614 verses](part sg pres act masc nom) "He that is" is eimi, which means "to be," "to exist," "to be the case," of circumstance and events "to happen,"  and "is possible." With the genitive object, the sense is "belongs to." It can also mean "must" with a dative.

ποιμήν, [8 verses](noun sg masc nom) "Shepherd" is from poimen, which means "herdsmen," "shepherd," and, generally, "captain," and "chief."

οὗ [294 verses](pron sg neut gen ) "Whose" is hos, which means "this," "that," "he," "she," "which," "what," "who," "whosoever," "where," "for which reason," and many similar meanings.

οὐκ [269 verses](partic) "Not" is ou , 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. recedes the verb, it affects the whole clause. When it precedes other words, its force is limited to those words.

ἐστίν.[614 verses](3rd sg pres ind act) "Are" is eimi, which means "to be," "to exist," "to be the case," of circumstance and events "to happen,"  and "is possible." With the genitive object, the sense is "belongs to."

τὰ [821 verses](article pl neut nom/acc)  "The" is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the").

πρόβατα [26 verses](noun pl neut nom/acc) "Sheep" is probaton, which means any domesticated four-footed animal, "sheep," "cattle," "herds," and "flocks.

ἴδια, [16 verses](adv/adj pl neut nom/acc) "Own" is idios, which means "one's own," "pertaining to oneself," "private," "personal," "personally attached" to one, "separate," "distinct," "strange," and "unusual."

θεωρεῖ [15 verses](3rd sg pres ind act) "Seeth" is theoreo, which means "to view," "to see", "to look at", "to gaze," "to behold," (of the mind) "to contemplate", "to consider", "to observe (as a spectator)", "to gaze", "to gape", "to inspect (troops)" and, in abstract, "to theorize" and "to speculate." It originally means literally, "to be sent to see an oracle."

τὸν [821 verses](article sg masc acc)  "The" is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the"). 

λύκον [4 verses](noun sg masc acc) "The wolf" is lykos (lukos), which means "wolf", "grisly", "jackals", "anything shaped like a hook", "a kind of noose," and "an engine of war for defending gates."

ἐρχόμενον [198 verses] (part sg pres mp neut acc) "Coming" is erchomai, which means "to start," "to set out," "to come," "to go," and any kind of motion. It means both "to go" on a journey and "to arrive" at a place.

καὶ [1089 verses](conj/adv) "And" is 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."

ἀφίησιν [73 verses] (3rd sg pres ind act) "Leaveth" is aphiemi, which means "to let fall," "to send away," "give up," "hand over," "to let loose," "to get rid of," "to leave alone," "to pass by," "to permit," and "to send forth from oneself."

τὰ [821 verses](article pl neut nom/acc)  "The" is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the").

πρόβατα [26 verses](noun pl neut acc) "Sheep" is probaton, which means any domesticated four-footed animal, "sheep," "cattle," "herds," and "flocks.

καὶ [1089 verses](conj/adv) "And" is 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."

φεύγει[7 verses](3rd sg pres ind act) "Fleeth" is pheugo, which means "to flee," "to take flight," "avoid," "escape," "seek to avoid," "to be expelled," "to be driven out," "go into exile," "go into banishment," "to be accused," "to be plead in defense," and "to flee from a charge."

καὶ [1089 verses](conj/adv) "And" is 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."

[821 verses](article sg masc nom)  "The" is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the").

λύκος [4 verses](noun sg masc nom ) "The wolf" is lykos (lukos), which means "wolf", "grisly", "jackals", "anything shaped like a hook", "a kind of noose," and "an engine of war for defending gates." -

ἁρπάζει [6 verses] (3rd sg pres ind act) "Catcheth" is from the Greek harpazô, which means to "snatch away," "seize hastily, " "snatch up," "overpower, " "overmaster," "grasp with the senses," "plunder," "carry off," and "be a robber." 

αὐτὰ [720 verses](adj pl neut acc) "Them"  is autos, which means "the same," and the reflexive pronouns, "myself," "yourself," "himself," "herself," "itself," or the oblique case of the pronouns, "him," "her," and "it." It also means "one's true self," that is, "the soul" as opposed to the body and "of one's own accord." In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there."

καὶ [1089 verses](conj/adv) "And" is 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."

σκορπίζει,— [4 verses](3rd sg pres ind act) "Scattereth" is from skorpizo, which means "to scatter," "to disperse," "to disintegrate," "to reduce to powder," and "to dissipate." 

KJV Analysis: 

But -- (OS) There is nothing in the Greek that can be translated as "but" in the source we use today but it does exist in the source that the KJV translators used.

he - (CW) The word translated as "he" is the Greek definite article, without a noun, it has the sense of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those") than the English "the." See this article for more. 

that -- (IW) There is nothing that can be translated as "that" in the Greek source. It was added because the next verb was translated as active rather than as a participle.

is -- (WF) The verb "is" here is the common form of "to be" in Greek. It means to have a certain characteristic or remain in a certain condition. It also equates terms or assigns characteristics. It is a participle, not an active verb.

an -- There is no indefinite article in Greek, but when a word doesn't have a definite article, the indefinite article can be added in English translation.

hireling, -- "Hireling" is a Greek adjective that means "hired", "hired servant", "hireling," and [military] "mercenary."

and -- The Greek word translated as "and" is used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis ("also"). In a series, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

not -- The Greek word translated as "not" is the Greek negative used to deny objective facts, not opinions. It means "no," "not," or"no truly." It makes a negative statement of fact. Adding "really" to the sentence captures the same idea. When a negative precedes the verb, it affects the whole clause. When it precedes other words, its force is limited to those words.

the -- (IW) There is nothing that can be translated as "the" in the Greek source.

shepherd, "Shepherd" is a noun that means "herdsmen," "shepherd," and, generally, "captain," and "chief."

whose -- The word translated as "whose" is a demonstrative pronoun ("this" "that"), but it often acts as a pronoun "which," "what," "who," "whosoever," "where," "for which reason," and many similar meanings. Here, it is the genitive object of "being" so "to him."

own -- The word translated as "own" is a very unusual word. It is not the very common pronoun usually translated as "his," but a specific word that means "one's own," "pertaining to oneself," and "private." The form here is either and adjective or an adverb.

the   -- The word translated as "the" is the Greek definite article, without a noun, it has the sense of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those") than the English "the." See this article for more. 

sheep -- "Sheep" is Christ's symbol for his followers. The Greek word refers to any domesticated animal and works better if translated simply as "flock" or "herd." The flock follows the shepherd, which is above them. It is also together, a united group.

are -- The verb "are" here is the common form of "to be" in Greek. It means to have a certain characteristic or remain in a certain condition. It also equates terms or assigns characteristics. With the genitive object, the sense is "belongs to." The object here is "whose" so the sense is "belongs to him."

not, -- The Greek word translated as "not" is the Greek negative used to deny objective facts, not opinions. It means "no," "not," or"no truly." It makes a negative statement of fact. Adding "really" to the sentence captures the same idea. When a negative p

seeth -- (CW) The Greek word translated as "see" is not one of the common words Jesus uses to mean "see." It is a fancier word that has more of a sense of viewing something as a spectator. This word is the root of the English word "theater." Jesus uses it most commonly to refer to people viewing him now but not seeing him in the future. Jesus also uses it to refer to people not seeing the spirit. Jesus also uses in the passive, acting like a noun, "this being viewed", or in a form where the subject acts on or for themselves, "the displaying of yourself". 

the -- The word translated as "the" is the Greek definite article, without a noun, it has the sense of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those") than the English "the." See this article for more. 

wolf -- The Greek word for "wolves" means wolves or jackals, but it is also the name for anything shaped like a hook. It is in the possessive modifying "midst", "competition," and "difference." The wolves are not a flock or a group, though many, but separated and in competition with a group.

coming, -- The word translated as "coming" primarily means "to start out" but Christ usually uses it to mean "come" but not always. It indicates movement, especially its beginning, without indicating a direction toward or away from anything, so it works either as "come" or "go," but it is more like our phrase "being underway." Our English word "show up" captures both the "start" and "come" ideas. See this article for more. It is a participle.

and -- The Greek word translated as "and" is used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis ("also"). In a series, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

leaveth -- The word translated as "leaves" primarily means "to let go" or "to send away." This same word is usually translated as "leave," "forgive," "suffer," and "let" in the New Testament. See this article for more. It has the sense of leaving something alone and letting it drop.

the   -- The word translated as "the" is the Greek definite article, without a noun, it has the sense of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those") than the English "the." See this article for more. 

sheep -- "Sheep" is Christ's symbol for his followers. The Greek word refers to any domesticated animal and works better if translated simply as "flock" or "herd." The flock follows the shepherd, which is above them. It is also together, a united group.

and -- The Greek word translated as "and" is used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis ("also"). In a series, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

fleeth: -- "Flee" is translated from a Greek word that means "to flee," "escape," and "to take flight."

and -- The Greek word translated as "and" is used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis ("also"). In a series, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

the -- The word translated as "the" is the Greek definite article, without a noun, it has the sense of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those") than the English "the." See this article for more. 

wolf -- The Greek word for "wolves" means wolves or jackals, but it is also the name for anything shaped like a hook. It is in the possessive modifying "midst", "competition," and "difference." The wolves are not a flock or a group, though many, but separated and in competition with a group.

catcheth  - "Catch" is a verb that means "to snatch away," "to carry off," "to overpower," and "to plunder." It is in the present tense. This is not an uncommon word for Christ to use. Everywhere else it is translated as "snatch," "seize" or "catch." 

them, -- The word translated as "them" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English. 

and -- The Greek word translated as "and" is used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis ("also"). In a series, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

scattereth  - "Scatters " is a verb that means "to scatter," "to disperse," "to dissipate," and "to disintegrate." The verb is from the noun that means "scorpion," possibly describing how baby scorpions scatter from the back of their mother who carries them.

the sheep. -- (OS) There is nothing in the Greek that can be translated as "the sheep" here in the source we use today but it does exist in the source that the KJV translators used.

KJV Translation Issues: 

7
  • OS -- Outdated Source -- The Greek word translated as "but" existed in the KJV Greek source but not the one we used today.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "he" is not the common word usually translated as "he."
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "that" doesn't exist in the source.
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "is" is not an active verb but a participle, "being."
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "the" doesn't exist in the source.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "sees" is not the common word usually translated as "see."
  • OS -- Outdated Source -- The Greek word translated as "the sheep" existed in the KJV Greek source but not the one we used today.

NIV Analysis: 

The - The word translated as "the" is the Greek definite article, without a noun, it has the sense of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those") than the English "the." See this article for more.

hireling, -- "Hireling" is a Greek adjective that means "hired", "hired servant", "hireling," and [military] "mercenary."

is -- (WF) The verb "is" here is the common form of "to be" in Greek. It means to have a certain characteristic or remain in a certain condition. It also equates terms or assigns characteristics. It is a participle, not an active verb.

not -- The Greek word translated as "not" is the Greek negative used to deny objective facts, not opinions. It means "no," "not," or"no truly." It makes a negative statement of fact. Adding "really" to the sentence captures the same idea. When a negative precedes the verb, it affects the whole clause. When it precedes other words, its force is limited to those words.

the -- (IW) There is nothing that can be translated as "the" in the Greek source.

shepherd, "Shepherd" is a noun that means "herdsmen," "shepherd," and, generally, "captain," and "chief."

and -- (WP) The Greek word translated as "and" is used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis ("also"). In a series, it is best translated as "not only...but also." This "and" appears before "is not the shepherd."

does -- This helping verb is used to create questions, commands, negative statements, and smooth word flow in English.

not, -- The Greek word translated as "not" is the Greek negative used to deny objective facts, not opinions. It means "no," "not," or"no truly." It makes a negative statement of fact. Adding "really" to the sentence captures the same idea.

own -- (WF)  The word translated as "own" is a very unusual word. It is not the very common pronoun usually translated as "his," but a specific word that means "one's own," "pertaining to oneself," and "private." This is used as a verb in this sentence, but the word is an adjective or an adverb.

the   -- The word translated as "the" is the Greek definite article, without a noun, it has the sense of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those") than the English "the." See this article for more. 

sheep -- "Sheep" is Christ's symbol for his followers. The Greek word refers to any domesticated animal and works better if translated simply as "flock" or "herd." The flock follows the shepherd, which is above them. It is also together, a united group.

missing "belongs to"  -- (MW) The untranslated word here is the common form of "to be" in Greek. It means to have a certain characteristic or remain in a certain condition. It also equates terms or assigns characteristics. With the genitive object, the sense is "belongs to." The object here is "whose" so the sense is "belongs to him."

missing "him"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is a demonstrative pronoun ("this" "that"), but it often acts as a pronoun "which," "what," "who," "whosoever," "where," "for which reason," and many similar meanings. Here, it is the genitive object of "being" so "him."

So when -- (IP) There is nothing that can be translated as "so when" in the Greek source.

he -- This is from the third-person, singular form of the verb.

sees -- (CW) The Greek word translated as "see" is not one of the common words Jesus uses to mean "see." It is a fancier word that has more of a sense of viewing something as a spectator. This word is the root of the English word "theater." Jesus uses it most commonly to refer to people viewing him now but not seeing him in the future. Jesus also uses it to refer to people not seeing the spirit. Jesus also uses in the passive, acting like a noun, "this being viewed", or in a form where the subject acts on or for themselves, "the displaying of yourself". 

the -- The word translated as "the" is the Greek definite article, without a noun, it has the sense of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those") than the English "the." See this article for more. 

wolf -- The Greek word for "wolves" means wolves or jackals, but it is also the name for anything shaped like a hook. It is in the possessive modifying "midst", "competition," and "difference." The wolves are not a flock or a group, though many, but separated and in competition with a group.

coming, -- The word translated as "coming" primarily means "to start out" but Christ usually uses it to mean "come" but not always. It indicates movement, especially its beginning, without indicating a direction toward or away from anything, so it works either as "come" or "go," but it is more like our phrase "being underway." Our English word "show up" captures both the "start" and "come" ideas. See this article for more. It is a participle.

missing "and"  -- (MW) The untranslated word "and" is used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis ("also"). In a series, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

he -- This is from the third-person, singular form of the verb.

abandons -- The word translated as "leaves" primarily means "to let go" or "to send away." This same word is usually translated as "leave," "forgive," "suffer," and "let" in the New Testament. See this article for more. It has the sense of leaving something alone and letting it drop.

the   -- The word translated as "the" is the Greek definite article, without a noun, it has the sense of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those") than the English "the." See this article for more. 

sheep -- "Sheep" is Christ's symbol for his followers. The Greek word refers to any domesticated animal and works better if translated simply as "flock" or "herd." The flock follows the shepherd, which is above them. It is also together, a united group.

and -- The Greek word translated as "and" is used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis ("also"). In a series, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

runs away: -- "Runs away" is translated from a Greek word that means "to flee," "escape," and "to take flight."

Then -- (WW) The Greek word translated as "then" is used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis ("also"). In a series, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

the -- The word translated as "the" is the Greek definite article, without a noun, it has the sense of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those") than the English "the." See this article for more. 

wolf -- The Greek word for "wolves" means wolves or jackals, but it is also the name for anything shaped like a hook. It is in the possessive modifying "midst", "competition," and "difference." The wolves are not a flock or a group, though many, but separated and in competition with a group.

attacks - (WW) "Attacks " is a verb that means "to snatch away," "to carry off," "to overpower," and "to plunder." It is in the present tense. This is not an uncommon word for Christ to use. Everywhere else it is translated as "snatch," "seize" or "catch." 

 the flock -- (WW) The word translated as "the flock" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.  The word means "the same" when used as an adjective. In the adverbial form, it  means "just here" or "exactly there." This pronoun follows the noun so "of his."

and -- The Greek word translated as "and" is used as the conjunction "and," but it also is used to add emphasis ("also"). In a series, it is best translated as "not only...but also."

scatters - "Scatters " is a verb that means "to scatter," "to disperse," "to dissipate," and "to disintegrate." The verb is from the noun that means "scorpion," possibly describing how baby scorpions scatter from the back of their mother who carries them.

it -- This English objective pronoun is added and not in the Greek source.   In Greek, pronoun objects are not repeated after each verb because they are implied by their first occurrence.

NIV Translation Issues: 

11
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "is" is not an active verb but a participle, "being."
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "the" doesn't exist in the source.
  • WP -- Wrongly Placed -- The word "and" doesn't appear here but before the first verb "is" or "being."
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "own" is not an active verb but an adjective.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "belongs to" is not shown in the English translation.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "him" is not shown in the English translation.
  • IP - Inserted Phrase-- The phrase "so when" doesn't exist in the source.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "sees" is not the common word usually translated as "see."
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "and" is not shown in the English translation.
  • WW - Wrong Word -- The word translated as "then" should be something more like "and."
  • WW - Wrong Word -- The word translated as "the flock" should be something more like "them."

Front Page Date: 

Jul 6 2022