John 12:45 And he that seeth me

Spoken to: 

group

Context: 

The Evangelist says that many believed in Jesus but were afraid to admit it because of the Pharisees, quoting Isaiah about not hearing and seeing (quoted by Jesus in Matthew 13:15).

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

And someone gazing at me gazes at the one who dispatched me.

My Takeaway: 

If Jesus was worth gazing at, it was because of his Father's words.

KJV : 

John 12:45 And he that seeth me seeth him that sent me.

NIV : 

John 12:45  The one who looks at me is seeing the one who sent me.

What is Lost in Translation: 

While this is clearly a reference to the earlier Isaiah quote, the word used for "see" is different in this verse than that quote. It is also a reference to the "light" in John 12:36 because light is what we see by. It echoes the humor of John 12:44, but changes it up by not starting with a contradiction. It also brings in the "trust" of that verse, since we can only see what we trust in.

Many different Greek words (see this article) are translated into English as "see, but Jesus uses specific words to say specific things. The word used here at once a more serious word, translated as "to perceive" or "to behold," and a sillier word, meaning "to gape." In English, the word "to gaze" bridges that gap.

Related Verses: 

Greek Vocabulary: 

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)  "He" is the Greek definite article, hos, ("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. 

θεωρῶν [15 verses](part sg pres act masc nom) "That 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 a spectator" or "to be sent to see an oracle." 

ἐμὲ [49 verses](pron 1st sg masc acc) "Me" is eme, which is the objective first-person, objective, singular pronoun that means  "me.

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 a spectator" or "to be sent to see an oracle." 

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

πέμψαντά [39 verses](part sg aor act masc acc) "Him that sent" is pempo, which means "send," "send forth," "send away," "conduct," and "escort."

με[49 verses](pron 1st sg masc acc) "Me" is eme, which is the objective first-person, objective, singular pronoun that means  "me."-- "Me" is the regular first-person pronoun in Greek as the object of the verb or preposition. As the object of a preposition, an accusative object indicates movement towards something or a position reached as a result of that movement.

θεωρεῖ is from theōreō (theoreo), which means "to see", "to look at", "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 πέμψαντά is from pempo, which means "send", "send forth", "send away", "conduct," and "escort."

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

KJV Analysis: 

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."

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.

seeth --  (WF, 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 from is a participle, not an active verb.

me "-- "Me" is the regular first-person pronoun in Greek as the object of the verb or preposition.

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."

him  --  (CW) The word translated as "him" 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.

sent -- (WF) "He sent" is from a Greek verb that means "send," "send forth," "send away," "conduct," and "escort." This is the second most common word Jesus uses that is translated as "send out," but this one doesn't have the prefix that has the sense of "out." The from is a participle, not an active verb.

me "-- "Me" is the regular first-person pronoun in Greek as the object of the verb or preposition.

KJV Translation Issues: 

7
  • 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 "see" is not an active verb but a participle, "gazing at."
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "see" is not a common word usually translated as "see."
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "him" is not the common word usually translated as "him."
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "that" doesn't exist in the source.
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "see" is not an active verb but a participle, "viewing."

NIV Analysis: 

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." After words implying sameness "as."

The one --  The word translated as "the one" 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. 

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

looks at --  (WF) The Greek word translated as "looks at" 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 from is a participle, not an active verb.

me "-- "Me" is the regular first-person pronoun in Greek as the object of the verb or preposition.

is -- This helping verb indicates the present tense of the verb. It is used here to form the present, progressive tense, which doesn't exist in Greek but which can smooth the flow of English sentences.

seeing --  (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." This is the same word translated as "look at" above.

the one --  (CW) The word translated as "him" 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. 

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

sent -- (WF) "He sent" is from a Greek verb that means "send," "send forth," "send away," "conduct," and "escort." This is the second most common word Jesus uses that is translated as "send out," but this one doesn't have the prefix that has the sense of "out." The from is a participle, not an active verb.

me "-- "Me" is the regular first-person pronoun in Greek as the object of the verb or preposition.

NIV Translation Issues: 

6
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" is not shown in the English translation.
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "who" doesn't exist in the source.
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "looks at" is not an active verb but a participle, "gazing at."
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "see" is not a common word usually translated as "see."
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "who" doesn't exist in the source.
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "see" is not an active verb but a participle, "viewing."

Front Page Date: 

Aug 24 2022