John 7:38 He that believeth on me

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

The writings have spoken of the one believing in me. From the emptiness within him, the streams of the changing time can perpetually change.

KJV : 

Jhn 7:38 He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.

Interesting and Hidden Aspects: 

This phrase is constructed of such dense metaphors that translating it directly fails to capture its rather intense meaning.

"The belly" is an interesting concept both linguistically and in Greek culture. Technically, the word means the hollow places within an animal. Culturally, among the Greeks, the belly was the seat of the baser emotions: hunger, lust, etc. The best way to think of it is as the place of physical need.

Rivers, waters, and the concept of flowing all connect in the changes over time.

This hidden interpretation of this verse is that those that believe in Christ are the sources of change and vitality in society.

Greek Vocabulary: 

πιστεύων part sg pres act masc nom) "He that believeth" is from pisteuô (pisteuo), which means "to trust, put faith in, or rely on a person", "to believe in someone's words", "to comply", "to feel confident in a thing," and "to entrust in a thing."

εἰς "Into" is from eis (eis), which means "into (of place)," "up to (of time)", "until (of time)", "as much as (of measure or limit)", "as far as (of measure or limit)", "towards (to express relation)", "in regard to (to express relation)", "of an end or limit," and "for (of purpose or object)."

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

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

εἶπεν (3rd sg aor ind act ) "Hath said" is from eipon (eipon), which means "to speak", "to say", "to recite", "to address", "to mention", "to name", "to proclaim", "to plead", "to promise," and "to offer."

γραφή "The scripture" is from graphê (graphe), which means "representing by means of lines", "a drawing", "writing", "the art of writing," and "that which is written." It came to mean "scripture" from its use in the Gospels.

ποταμοὶ "Rivers" is from potamos, which means "river", "stream", "artificial river," and "canal."

ἐκ "Out of" is from ek, which means "out of", "from", "by," and "away from."

τῆς κοιλίας "Belly" is from the Greek, koilia, which means the "cavity within the body" (from the Greek, koilos, for "hollow"). It means both the belly, the intestines, and the womb. The word is also used to mean "excrement," which fills the hollow.

αὐτοῦ "His" is from autos (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."

ῥεύσουσιν [unique](3rd pl aor subj act) "Shall flow" is rheo, which means "to flow", "to stream", "to run", "to fall", "to drop off", "to liquefy", "to be in a state of perpetual flux and change," [of persons] "to be inclined," [of a ship] "to leak," and "to have a flux."

ὕδατος "Water" is from hudôr (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.

ζῶντος. (part sg pres act masc gen) "Living" is from zaô (zao), which means "to live", "the living," and "to be alive." It is a metaphor for "to be full of life", "to be strong," and "to be fresh."