John 10:4 And when he putteth forth his own sheep,

Spoken to: 

audience

Context: 

The doorkeeper lets in the shepherd whose sheep recognize the sound of his voice.

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

When he tosses out all his own, he guides them and he goes in front of them and that flock of his follows because it has seen that voice of his.

My Takeaway: 

We know who to follow when we hear our true name.

KJV : 

John 10:4 And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice.

NIV : 

John 10:4 When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice.

What is Lost in Translation: 

This verse starts with a humorous verb. The word translated as "putteth forth""brought out" means 
"tosses out" but it is usually translated as "caste out" in the Bible since it is the word used about "demons
 or "devils." It is a funny way of referring to chasing sheep out of their pen. It could be used here for two reasons: to refer to a future in which his followers are caste out of society and, in a metaphorical sense, when his ideas are caste out of society.

The Greek term translated as "follow" also means to follow the meaning of discourse or to follow an analogy. So the verse refers his flock physically following him but more importantly, following his ideas even though he uses analogies, such as this one. 

The word translated as "know" is funny, because it means "to see." So Jesus is saying that his flock "has seen his voice." The word means "to know" in the same sense that we use the word "to see" to mean "know." As in "I see your point." This phrase is another play on words about "seeing" used "have seen" to mean "know." (See this article for more about this word. The final word translated as "voice" refers to the sound or the tone more than the actual words.

Possible Symbolic Meaning: 

The gate is symbolic of the gateway to the soul. The shepherd represents the truth as the sheep represents those who follow the truth. In tossing us out of our pen, the shepherd is freeing us. When it [the truth] frees all its own, it guides them and the flock goes along with the truth because they recognize the sound of it.

Related Verses: 

Greek Vocabulary: 

ὅταν [70 verses](adv/conj) "When" is from hotan, which means "whenever (as a condition)," and "since (as a cause)."

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

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

πάντα [212 verses](adj pl neut acc) "All" is pas, which means "all," "the whole," "every," "anyone," "all kinds," and "anything." In the adverbial form, it means "every way," "on every side," "in every way," and "altogether."

ἐκβάλῃ, [33 verses] (3rd sg aor subj act) "He putteth forth" is ekballo and means "throw out," "cast out of a place,"and "expose." Ek means "out of," "from," and "away from." Ballo is "to throw" or "to scatter."

ἔμπροσθεν [18 verses](adv, prep) "Before" is emprosthen, which as an adverb means [of place]"in front of," "before," "forwards," [of time] "before," "of old," and as a preposition, "facing," "opposite," "in front," [of time] beforehand," and [of degree] "preferred before." It also denotes a ranking. Takes a genitive object.

αὐτῶν [720 verses](adj pl masc/fem/neut gen) "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."

πορεύεται, [54 verses] (3rd sg pres ind mp) "He goeth" is poreuomai (poreuo) which means "make to go," "carry," "convey," "bring," "go," "march," and "proceed." It is almost always translated as "go" in the NT.

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."

τὰ [821 verses](article pl neut nom) Untranslated is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the").  -

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

αὐτῷ [720 verses](adj sg masc dat) "Him"  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."

ἀκολουθεῖ[22 verses](verb 3rd sg pres ind act)  "Follow" is akoloutheo, which means "to follow," and "to go with." It also means "to be guided by" and means following a leader as a disciple.

ὅτι [332 verses](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."

οἴδασιν  [38 verses] (3rd pl perf ind act) "They know"is oida which is a form of eido (ἴδω) which means "to see," "to examine," "to perceive," "to behold," "to know how to do," "to see with the mind's eye," and "to know."

τῆς [821 verses](article sg fem gen)  Untranslated is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the").  -

φωνῆς  [13 verses] (noun sg fem gen) "Voice" is phone, which means "sound", "tone", "sound of a voice", "speech", "voice", "utterance", "cry" [of animals], "sounds" [of inanimate objects], "faculty of speech", "phrase", "saying", "rumor," and "report." -- 

αὐτοῦ [720 verses](adj sg masc gen) "His" 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."

KJV Analysis: 

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

when -- The Greek word translated as "when" introduces a phrase that explains a certain condition so "whenever" or "since."

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

putteth-- (CW) "Putteth" is a verb that means "throw out." Depending on the context, it can mean "toss out," "turn out," or "take out." It is usually translated as "cast out" in the NT.

forth -- This is from the prefix of the verb meaning "out of."

missing "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article,"the," which usually precedes a noun and, without a noun, takes the meaning of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those"). See this article for more. 

his own -- The word translated as "his 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."

sheep, -- -- (OS) There is nothing in the Greek that can be translated as "sheep" in the source we use today but it does exist in the source that the KJV translators used. In current sources this "all," the Greek adjective meaning "all," "the whole," "every," and similar ideas. When it is used as a noun, we would say "everything." As an adverb, it means "in every way," "on every side," and "altogether."

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

goeth -- The Greek verb translated as "go" is the most common verb translated as "go" in the NT. This word means "to lead over," "depart," and "to carry over." This word, however, uniquely means both "to pursue a course" and "to depart from life." In the active voice, it means "made to go" or "carried over" but in the passive or middle,its normal form, the subject is either being taken or taking himself and means "going," "crossing over," or "departing" more directly.

before -- The Greek word translated as "before" means "in front of" referring to place and when used to apply to time means "beforehand."

them, -- The word translated as "them" 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." After words implying sameness "as."

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 "of his"  -- (MW) The untranslated word "his" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.  This pronoun follows the noun so "of his."

follow -- The term "follow" means "to follow," or "go with," in a physical sense, but it is also a metaphor meaning "to be guided by" or "to follow the meaning of."

him -- The word translated as "him" 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."

: for -- The word translated as "for" introduces a statement of fact or cause, "for what," "because," "since," and "wherefore."

they -- This is from the third-person, plural form of the verb.

know -- The word translated as "know" means primarily "to see" and is used to mean "know' as we use the word "see" to mean "know" in English. There is another word Jesus could have used here to mean know, but using the word "have seen" is funnier. This verb is technical the past perfect tense, but the past perfect of "to see" is used to mean "know."

his -- The word translated as "his" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.   This pronoun follows the noun so "of his."

missing "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article,"the," which usually precedes a noun and, without a noun, takes the meaning of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those"). See this article for more. 

voice: -- The noun translated as "voice"  means "sound", "speech", "voice",  "cry" [of animals], "sounds" [of inanimate objects], and "report."

KJV Translation Issues: 

6
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "put" is not the common word usually translated as "put."
  • OS -- Outdated Source -- The Greek word translated as "and" existed in the KJV Greek source but not the one we used today.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" before "his own" is not shown in the English translation.
  • OS -- Outdated Source -- The Greek word translated as "sheep" existed in the KJV Greek source but not the one we used today.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "of his" after "sheep" is not shown in the English translation.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" before "voice" is not shown in the English translation.

NIV Analysis: 

When -- The Greek word translated as "when" introduces a phrase that explains a certain condition so "whenever" or "since."

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

has --  (WT)This helping verb "have" indicates that the verb is the tense indicating an action completed in the past.

brought -- (CW) "Brought " is a verb that means "throw out." Depending on the context, it can mean "toss out," "turn out," or "take out." It is usually translated as "cast out" in the NT.

out -- This  is from the prefix of the verb meaning "out of."

all -- -- this "all,"is the Greek adjective meaning "all," "the whole," "every," and similar ideas. When it is used as a noun, we would say "everything." As an adverb, it means "in every way," "on every side," and "altogether."

missing "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article,"the," which usually precedes a noun and, without a noun, takes the meaning of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those"). See this article for more. 

his own -- The word translated as "his 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."

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

goes -- The Greek verb translated as "go" is the most common verb translated as "go" in the NT. This word means "to lead over," "depart," and "to carry over." This word, however, uniquely means both "to pursue a course" and "to depart from life." In the active voice, it means "made to go" or "carried over" but in the passive or middle,its normal form, the subject is either being taken or taking himself and means "going," "crossing over," or "departing" more directly.

ahead of -- The Greek word translated as "ahead of" means "in front of" referring to place and when used to apply to time means "beforehand."

them, -- The word translated as "them" 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." After words implying sameness "as."

his ---- The word translated as "his" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.   This pronoun follows the noun so "of his."

missing "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article,"the," which usually precedes a noun and, without a noun, takes the meaning of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those"). 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.

follow -- The term "follow" means "to follow," or "go with," in a physical sense, but it is also a metaphor meaning "to be guided by" or "to follow the meaning of."

him -- The word translated as "him" 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."

because  -- The word translated as "because" introduces a statement of fact or cause, "for what," "because," "since," and "wherefore."

they -- This is from the third-person, plural form of the verb.

know -- The word translated as "know" means primarily "to see" and is used to mean "know' as we use the word "see" to mean "know" in English. There is another word Jesus could have used here to mean know, but using the word "have seen" is funnier. This verb is technical the past perfect tense, but the past perfect of "to see" is used to mean "know."

his -- The word translated as "his" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.   This pronoun follows the noun so "of his."

missing "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word is the Greek definite article,"the," which usually precedes a noun and, without a noun, takes the meaning of "the one." The Greek article is much closer to our demonstrative pronouns ("this," "that," "these," "those"). See this article for more. 

voice: -- The noun translated as "voice"  means "sound", "speech", "voice",  "cry" [of animals], "sounds" [of inanimate objects], and "report."

NIV Translation Issues: 

5
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "brought" is not the common word usually translated as "brought."
  • WT - Wrong Tense - The verb "have" indicates the past perfect tense, but the tense is something that happens at a specific point in time (past, present, or future).
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" before "his own" is not shown in the English translation.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" before "sheep" not shown in the English translation.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" before "voice" not shown in the English translation.

Front Page Date: 

Jun 29 2022