John 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil,

Spoken to: 

challengers

Context: 

Jesus tells his audience that they do what their father does and they say that they only have one father, God. In the previous verse, Jesus tells them they don't understand his words.

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

You yourselves ARE from THE father--the slanderer. And the desires of that father of yours, you desire to perform. That one there was a man-destroyer from a beginning and in the truth he didn't stand because it isn't, a truth, in him. When he conveys this lie, from these of his own he conveys it. Because lying he is, and the father of it.

My Takeaway: 

We may not know the truth, but we all know when we are lying.

KJV : 

John 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

NIV : 

John 8:44 You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a man-destroyer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.

What is Lost in Translation: 

A long verse with a lot of wordplays hidden in the Greek that tie this verse together with the previous verses. In the last verse, John 8:43, Jesus tells his challengers that they don't understand his words. He explains his words here. Unfortunately, they are almost comically mistranslated to confuse Jesus's meaning. 

The word translated as "the devil" specifically means "the slander" (see this article) and that idea ties the verse together. The verse starts with a play on words. Jesus starts "You yourselves," adding the extra pronoun for emphasis, "ARE are from THE father..."--not "your" father as mistranslated. This sounds like he is agreeing with them that God is their father since that is "the father" they have been talking about. But then he surprises them by adding "the slanderer." This is a punchline.

The next sentence is another play on words that is also lost in translation. It says, "And the desires of that father of yours, you desire to perform." The first "desire" is a noun from the same root as the verb meaning "want" or "desire."

Then Jesus uses a pronoun that he has been using only to refer to God in this conversation thus far. It means "that one there." So he is contrasting their father with his. He calls the slanderer not a "murderer," but a "man-destroyer." We can see here why the word in John 8:37 and John 8:40 translated as "kill" is better translated as "destroy." That word is the root word of this noun with the word "man" added to the front.  People are destroyed by slandering them. You slander people to justify killing them.

The word translated as "speak" means specifically passing on information. It is a funny word that means both "gossip" and the "pronouncements of an oracle." It is not the normal word for "speak" but it is the word Jesus uses throughout this conversation in a self-deprecating way. The way the slanderer relays information is the point here. He passes it one "from those of his own," that is, through his children. The phrase is mistranslated as "of his own" and, even more oddly, as "his native language." This misses the point, that the slanderer is using them to pass on lies. This is what make his the father of lying.

Greek Vocabulary: 

ὑμεῖς [92 verses](pron 2nd pl nom) "You" is hymeis (humeis), which are the singular nominative form of the second person, "you."

ἐκ [121 verses] (prep) "From" is ek, which means 1) [of motion] "out of," "from," "by," "away from;" 2) [of place] "beyond," "outside of," "beyond;" 3) [of succession] "after," "from;" 4) [of rest] "on," "in," 5) [of time] "since," "from," "at," "in;" 5) [of materials] "out of," "made from;" 6) cause, instrument, or means "by."

τοῦ [821 verses](article sg masc gen)  "Your" is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the").

πατρὸς [191 verses](noun sg masc gen) "The Father" is pater, which means "father," "grandfather," "author," "parent," and "forefathers."

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

διαβόλου [5 verses] (adj sg masc gen) "Devil" is diabolos, which means "slanderous", "backbiting," and "slanderer."

ἐστὲ [614 verses] (2nd pl 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." It can also mean "must" with a dative.

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."

τὰς [821 verses](article pl fem acc)  "The" is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the"). 

ἐπιθυμίας [1 verse](noun pl fem acc) "Lusts" is from epithymia, which means "desire", "yearning", "appetite", "lust", "sexual desire," and "the object of desire." It literally means "desire on."

τοῦ (article sg masc gen)  Untranslated is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the"). 

πατρὸς [191 verses](noun sg masc gen) "The Father" is pater, which means "father," "grandfather," "author," "parent," and "forefathers."

ὑμῶν [168 verses](pron 2nd pl gen) "Your/you" is humon, the plural possessive form of su the pronoun of the second person, "you." It is either a possessive pronoun or the object of a preposition.

θέλετε [64 verses](2nd pl imperf ind act) "Ye will" is thelo, which as a verb means "to be willing (of consent rather than desire)," "to wish," "to ordain," "to decree," "to be resolved to a purpose" "to maintain," "to hold," "to delight in, and "will (too express a future event with inanimate objects)." It is a prolonged form (only found in NT) of a verb that means "to be resolved to a purpose" so, in a sense, "to decide," and "to desire." As a participle, it means "being willing" or, adverbially, "willingly," and "gladly." In the Hebrew, "will" or "desire" is chaphets, which means "to delight in," "to take pleasure in," and "to be pleased with." It is from the same root as the word translated as "lusts."

ποιεῖν. [168 verses](verb pres inf act attic) "Do" is poieo, which means "to make," "to produce," "to create," "to bring into existence," "to bring about," "to cause," "to perform," "to render," "to consider," "to prepare," "to make ready," and "to do."

ἐκεῖνος [107 verses](adj sg masc nom) "He" is ekeinos, which means "the person there," "that person," "that thing," and, in the form of an adverb, "in that case," "in that way," "at that place," and "in that manner."

ἀνθρωποκτόνος [1 verse](adj sg masc/fem nom)"Murderer" is  anthrōpoktonos, which means "murdering men," and "homicide." From the roots anthropos- and -apokteino.

ἦν [614 verses](3rd sg imperf ind act) "Was" 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.

ἀπ᾽ [190 verses]​(prep) "From" is apo, a preposition of separation which means "from" or "away from" from when referring to place or motion, "from" or "after" when referring to time, "from" as an origin or cause. It also means the instrument "by" which a thing is done.  Usually takes the genitive object.

ἀρχῆς [13 verses](noun sg fem gen) "Beginning" is arche, which means "beginning," "origin," "first principles," "first place of power," "empire," and "command." This is the word from which we get both "archbishop," primal bishops who can consecrate other bishops, and "archeology," the study of ancient.

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."

ἐν [413 verses](prep) "In" is en, which means, with a dative object, "in," "on," "at," "by," "among," "within," "surrounded by," "in one's hands," "in one's power," "during,"  and "with." With the accusative, it means "into," "on," and "for." Referring to time, it means. "in the course of" or "during." 

τῇ [821 verses](article sg fem dat)  "The" is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the"). 

ἀληθείᾳ [19 verses] (noun sg fem dat) "Truth" is aletheia, which means literally "the state of not being hidden," "truth," and "reality." It was also applied to "real events" and "the realization of a dream." Applied to people, it means "truthfulness" and "sincerity." The opposite of a lie or appearance. 

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.

ἔστηκεν, [28 verses](3rd sg imperf ind act) "Abode" is histemi, which means "to make to stand," , "to set up," "to bring to a standstill," "to check," "to appoint," "to establish," "to set upright," "to erected,""to fix by agreement," and "to place." In the passive, it means "to be placed," "to be set," "to stand," "to stand still," "to stand firm," "to arise."

ὅτι [332 verses](adv/conj) "That" 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."

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.

ἐστίν.[614 verses](3rd sg pres ind act) "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.

ἀληθείᾳ [19 verses] (noun sg fem nom) "Truth" is aletheia, which means literally "the state of not being hidden," "truth," and "reality." It was also applied to "real events" and "the realization of a dream." Applied to people, it means "truthfulness" and "sincerity." The opposite of a lie or appearance. 

ἐν [413 verses](prep) "In" is en, which means, with a dative object, "in," "on," "at," "by," "among," "within," "surrounded by," "in one's hands," "in one's power," "during,"  and "with." With the accusative, it means "into," "on," and "for." Referring to time, it means. "in the course of" or "during." 

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."

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

λαλῇ [49 verses] (2nd sg pres ind/subj mp/act or 3rd sg pres subj) "He speaketh" is laleo, which means "to talk," "to speak" "to prattle," "to chat," and [for oracles] "to proclaim." It also means "chatter" as the opposite of articulate speech. However, Jesus seems to use in in the sense of "relaying" information gained from another.

τὸ [821 verses](article sg neut acc)  "A" is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the"). 

ψεῦδος, [1 verse](noun sg neut acc) "Lie" is from pseudos, which means "falsehood", "lie", "deceit", "fallacy", "false conclusion", "false doctrine," and, interestingly enough, "pimples" on the nose and "white spots" on fingernails, which are supposed characteristics of liars.

ἐκ [121 verses] (prep) "Of" is ek, which means 1) [of motion] "out of," "from," "by," "away from;" 2) [of place] "beyond," "outside of," "beyond;" 3) [of succession] "after," "from;" 4) [of rest] "on," "in," 5) [of time] "since," "from," "at," "in;" 5) [of materials] "out of," "made from;" 6) cause, instrument, or means "by."

τῶν [821 verses](article pl masc/fem/neut acc)  Untranslated is the Greek definite article, hos, ("the").  -

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

λαλεῖ, [49 verses] (3rd sg imperf ind act "He speaketh" is laleo, which means "to talk," "to speak" "to prattle," "to chat," and [for oracles] "to proclaim." It also means "chatter" as the opposite of articulate speech. However, Jesus seems to use in in the sense of "relaying" information gained from another.  speak -- (CW) The Greek word translated as "speak" is not the ordinary "to say" or "to speak" in Greek. This word means both "idle chatter," "gossip," and "the proclamations of an oracle." Jesus uses it to capture the idea of "pass on" or "relay" information because that captures both someone gossiping and an oracle does. The word is somewhat self-effacing.

ὅτι [332 verses](adv/conj) "Because" 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."

ψεύστης [2 verses](noun sg masc nom) "A liar" is the noun pseustes, which means "liar", "cheat", "lying," and "false." OR (verb 2nd sg pres ind act)A liar" is the verb pseustes, which means "to be a liar."

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

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"). 

πατὴρ [191 verses](noun sg masc nom) "The Father" is pater, which means "father," "grandfather," "author," "parent," and "forefathers."

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

KJV Analysis: 

Ye -- The pronoun "you" is used explicitly as the subject of the sentence. Since it is already part of the verb, its use here creates emphasis on the "you" as we might say "you yourselves." It is plural.

missing "yourselves"  ---- (MW) The pronoun is used here explicitly as the subject of the sentence. Since this information is already in the verb, the sense is repetitive as we say "you yourselves."

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 word also means "to exist" and where it doesn't connect to characteristics or conditions is best translated that way. 

of -- (CW) The Greek preposition translated as "of" means "out of" or "from." The word has a number of different meanings based upon its context. However, in Greek, they use the genitive case instead of a preposition for the types of phrases that are translated into English "of" phrases.

your   -- (WW) The word translated as "your" 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. 

father -- "Father" is the Greek noun that means "father" or any male ancestor so "forefathers." It is the word that Christ uses to address his own Father.

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. 

devil, -- (CW) The term translated as "the devil" is another adjective, that means "to slander." Introduced by an article ("the") it becomes a noun and means "the slanderer" and "the backbiter" in Greek. Jesus uses it to describe someone who destroys other people primarily by lying about them. See this article.

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. 

lusts -  "Lusts" is a noun Jesus only uses here that means "desire", "yearning", "appetite", "lust", "sexual desire," and "the object of desire." It is from the same word that Jesus uses as a verb to express people wanting or desiring to do something.

of -- This word "of"  comes from the genitive case of the following word that requires the addition of a preposition in English.  The most common is the "of" of possession.

your -- The word translated as "your" is a plural, second-person pronoun in the genitive case. This pronoun follows the noun so the possessive "of yours."

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. 

father  -- "Father" is the Greek noun that means "father" or any male ancestor so "forefathers." It is the word that Christ uses to address his own Father.

ye -- This is from the second-person, plural form of the verb.

will -- (CW) The Greek word translated as "will" expresses consent and even delight in doing something. It is not the same as the helper verb "will" in English. It means "to consent" and "to be resolved to a purpose." However, "desire" works best here because it is a reference to the previous noun meaning "desire" from the same root.

do. -- (CW, WF) The Greek word translated as "to do" has the primary meaning of "making" or producing" something or "causing" or "performing" as service. It describes a productive action.  It is not as broad a word as the English "do," which covers all actions, productive or not. "Do" doesn't work well because we do not "do" "desires." It is an infinitive not an active verb.

He -- The word translated as "he" is an adjective that highlights its noun as being in a specific place or time from a word that means "there." Used a pronoun, the sense is "that one there." Used in the form of an adverb,  it means "in that case," "in that way," "at that place," and "in that manner."

was -- The verb "was" 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.

a -- 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.

murderer  -  "Murderer" is another noun that Jesus only uses here that means "murdering men," and "homicide." The word literally means "man killer" describing both murderers and the act of murder. The "killer" part is from, the verb Jesus uses in John 8:37 and John 8:40 to accuse these people of wanting to kill him.

from  -- The word translated as "from" means "from" in both locations and when referring to a source or a cause. It also means the instrument "by" which a thing is done and "away from."

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

beginning, -- "Beginning" is a noun that means "beginning," "origin," "first principles," "first place of power," "empire," and "command." This is the word from which we get both "archbishop," primal bishops who can consecrate other bishops, and "archeology," the study of ancient history.

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."

abode  --  (CW) The verb translated as "abode" means "to make stand," "to set up," "to establish and similar words in the active form. In the passive, it means "to be placed," "to stand," and "to stand firm."  Like the English words "put" and "set," it has a number of specific meanings from "to put down [in writing]," "to bury," "to establish," "to make," "to cause," and "to assign."

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.

in -- The word translated as "in" means "in," "within," "with" (an instrument), "during" (time),  or "among"  with a dative object as the one here.  With the accusative, it means "into," "on," and "for." When referring to time, it means "during." It can mean "on," "at," or "by" in the sense of "near."

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. 

truth, -- The literal meaning of the Greek word for "truth" is "not hidden," and it means what is real as opposed to how things seem. Applied to people, it means "truthfulness" and "sincerity." The opposite of a lie or appearance.

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

there -- (CW) This is from the third-person, singular form of the verb. Because of the negative before the verb, "it" words better.

is -- 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. With the genitive object, the sense is "belongs to." The word also means "to exist" and where it doesn't connect to characteristics or conditions is best translated that way.

no -- (WP) 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. This doesn't negate the word "truth" but the verb, "is."

truth -- The literal meaning of the Greek word for "truth" is "not hidden," and it means what is real as opposed to how things seem. Applied to people, it means "truthfulness" and "sincerity." The opposite of a lie or appearance.

in-- The word translated as "in" means "in," "within," "with" (an instrument), "during" (time),  or "among"  with a dative object as the one here.  With the accusative, it means "into," "on," and "for." When referring to time, it means "during." It can mean "on," "at," or "by" in the sense of "near."

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

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.

speaketh  -- (CW) The Greek word translated as "speak" is not the ordinary "to say" or "to speak" in Greek. This word means both "idle chatter," "gossip," and "the proclamations of an oracle." Jesus uses it to capture the idea of "pass on" or "relay" information because that captures both someone gossiping and an oracle does. The word is somewhat self-effacing.

a -- (WW) The word translated as "a" 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. 

lie, "Lie" is from pseudos, which means "falsehood", "lie", "deceit", "fallacy", "false conclusion", "false doctrine," and, interestingly enough, "pimples" on the nose and "white spots" on fingernails, which are supposed characteristics of liars.

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

speaketh -- (CW, WT) The Greek word translated as "speak" is not the ordinary "to say" or "to speak" in Greek. This word means "idle chatter," "gossip," and "the proclamations of an oracle." Jesus uses it to capture the idea of "passing on." "conveying,"  or "relaying" information because that captures both what someone gossiping and an oracle does. The word is somewhat self-effacing or derogatory. The tense is the simple past not the present as above.

of -- (CW) The Greek preposition translated as "of" means "out of" or "from." The word has a number of different meanings based upon its context. However, in Greek, they use the genitive case instead of a preposition for the types of phrases that are translated into English "of" phrases. Here, the sense is "from."

missing "these"  -- (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. "These" works best here to indicate that this is plural.

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." This word is plural, seemingly referring to his critics.

for -- (CW) The word translated as "for" introduces a statement of fact or cause, "for what," "because," "since," and "wherefore." It is only confusing because it was translated as "because" above.

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

is  -- 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. With the genitive object, the sense is "belongs to." The word also means "to exist" and where it doesn't connect to characteristics or conditions is best translated that way. -- When the verb "to be" appears early in the clause before the subject, the sense is more like "it is" or, in the plural, "there are."

a -- 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.

liar, "A liar" is a word that means, as a noun, "liar", "cheat", or the adjective, "lying," and "false."

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. 

father  -- "Father" is the Greek noun that means "father" or any male ancestor so "forefathers." It is the word that Christ uses to address his own Father.

of -- This word "of"  comes from the genitive case of the following word that requires the addition of a preposition in English.  The most common is the "of" of possession.

it. --(CW) The word translated as "it" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.  The pronoun does not match the word for "lie," which is neuter, but it does match the word "liar," which is masculine so "him" is appropriate. However, that would make him the father of himself. The word can also be translated as the adjective, "lying"  or the verb "you are a liar."

KJV Translation Issues: 

20
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "yourselves" is not shown in the English translation.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "of" does not capture the specific meaning of the word.
  • WW - Wrong Word -- The word translated as "your" should be something more like "the."
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "devil" does not capture the specific meaning of the word.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" before "father" is not shown in the English translation.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "will" does not capture the specific meaning of the word.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "do" does not capture the specific meaning of the word.
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "do" is not an active verb but an infinitive, "to perform."
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "the" before "beginning" doesn't exist in the source.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "abode" does not capture the specific meaning of the word.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "there" does not capture the specific meaning of the word.
  • WP -- Wrongly Placed -- The word "no" doesn't appear here but before the verb for "is."
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "speaketh" does not capture the specific meaning of the word.
  • WW - Wrong Word -- The word translated as "a" should be something more like "the."
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "speaketh" does not capture the specific meaning of the word.
  • WT - Wrong Tense - The English verb  "speaketh" is the present tense, but Greek is in the simple (imperfect) past. "saw."
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "of" does not capture the specific meaning of the word.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" before "his own" is not shown in the English translation.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "for" is the same word translated as "because" above.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "it" does not capture the specific meaning of the word.

NIV Analysis: 

You -- The pronoun "you" is used explicitly as the subject of the sentence. Since it is already part of the verb, its use here creates emphasis on the "you" as we might say "you yourselves." It is plural.

missing "yourselves"  ---- (MW) The pronoun is used here explicitly as the subject of the sentence. Since this information is already in the verb, the sense is repetitive as we say "you yourselves."

belong -- (CW) The verb "belong" 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 word also means "to exist" and where it doesn't connect to characteristics or conditions is best translated that way. It can mean "belong" when it has a genitive object, but it doesn't here. 

to -- (WW) The Greek preposition translated as "to" means "out of" or "from." The word has a number of different meanings based upon its context. It is not a preposition usually translated as "to."

your   -- (WW) The word translated as "your" 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. 

father -- "Father" is the Greek noun that means "father" or any male ancestor so "forefathers." It is the word that Christ uses to address his own Father.

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. 

devil, -- (CW) The term translated as "the devil" is another adjective, that means "to slander." Introduced by an article ("the") it becomes a noun and means "the slanderer" and "the backbiter" in Greek. Jesus uses it to describe someone who degrades other people primarily by lying about them. See this article.

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."

you -- This is from the second-person, plural form of the verb.

want -- The Greek word translated as "will" expresses consent and even delight in doing something. It is not the same as the helper verb "will" in English. It means "to consent" and "to be resolved to a purpose." However, "desire" works best here because it is a reference to the previous noun meaning "desire" from the same root.

to -- This "to" is added because the infinitive form of the verb requires a "to" in English.

carry out  -- The Greek word translated as "to do" has the primary meaning of "making" or producing" something or "causing" or "performing" as service. It describes a productive action.  It is not as broad a word as the English "do," which covers all actions, productive or not. "Carry out" works because we "carry out"  "desires." It is an infinitive.

your -- The word translated as "your" is a plural, second-person pronoun in the genitive case. This pronoun follows the noun so the possessive "of yours."

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. 

father  -- "Father" is the Greek noun that means "father" or any male ancestor so "forefathers." It is the word that Christ uses to address his own Father.

's -- This word "'s"  comes from the genitive case of the previous word that indicates possession.

missing "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word 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. 

desires-  "Desires" is a noun Jesus only uses here that means "desire", "yearning", "appetite", "lust", "sexual desire," and "the object of desire." It is from the same word that Jesus uses as a verb to express people wanting or desiring to do something translated here as "wants."

He -- The word translated as "he" is an adjective that highlights its noun as being in a specific place or time from a word that means "there." Used a pronoun, the sense is "that one there." Used in the form of an adverb,  it means "in that case," "in that way," "at that place," and "in that manner."

was -- The verb "was" 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.

a -- 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.

murderer  -  "Murderer" is another noun that Jesus only uses here that means "murdering men," and "homicide." The word literally means "man destroyed" describing both murderers and the act of murder. The "killer" part is from, the verb Jesus uses in John 8:37 and John 8:40 to accuse these people of wanting to kill him but meaning something closer to "destroy" from a root word meaning "kill."

from  -- The word translated as "from" means "from" in both locations and when referring to a source or a cause. It also means the instrument "by" which a thing is done and "away from."

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

beginning, -- "Beginning" is a noun that means "beginning," "origin," "first principles," "first place of power," "empire," and "command." This is the word from which we get both "archbishop," primal bishops who can consecrate other bishops, and "archeology," the study of ancient history.

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."

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.

holding --  (CW) The verb translated as "holding" means "to make stand," "to set up," "to establish and similar words in the active form. In the passive, it means "to be placed," "to stand," and "to stand firm."  Like the English words "put" and "set," it has a number of specific meanings from "to put down [in writing]," "to bury," "to establish," "to make," "to cause," and "to assign." Translating it as "holding" complicates its meaning.

to --(CW) The word translated as "to" means "in," "within," "with" (an instrument), "during" (time),  or "among"  with a dative object as the one here.  With the accusative, it means "into," "on," and "for." When referring to time, it means "during." It can mean "on," "at," or "by" in the sense of "near."

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. 

truth, -- The literal meaning of the Greek word for "truth" is "not hidden," and it means what is real as opposed to how things seem. Applied to people, it means "truthfulness" and "sincerity." The opposite of a lie or appearance.

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

there -- (CW) This is from the third-person, singular form of the verb. Because of the negative before the verb, "it" words better.

is -- 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. With the genitive object, the sense is "belongs to." The word also means "to exist" and where it doesn't connect to characteristics or conditions is best translated that way.

no -- (WP) 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. This doesn't negate the word "truth" but the verb, "is."

truth -- The literal meaning of the Greek word for "truth" is "not hidden," and it means what is real as opposed to how things seem. Applied to people, it means "truthfulness" and "sincerity." The opposite of a lie or appearance.

in-- The word translated as "in" means "in," "within," "with" (an instrument), "during" (time),  or "among"  with a dative object as the one here.  With the accusative, it means "into," "on," and "for." When referring to time, it means "during." It can mean "on," "at," or "by" in the sense of "near."

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

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.

missing "relays"  -- (MW) The untranslated word  "relay" is not the ordinary "to say" or "to speak" in Greek. This word means both "idle chatter," "gossip," and "the proclamations of an oracle." Jesus uses it to capture the idea of "pass on" or "relay" information because that captures both someone gossiping and an oracle does. The word is somewhat self-effacing.

missing "the"  -- (MW) The untranslated word 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. 

lies, - (WF) "Lie" is from pseudos, which means "falsehood", "lie", "deceit", "fallacy", "false conclusion", "false doctrine," and, interestingly enough, "pimples" on the nose and "white spots" on fingernails, which are supposed characteristics of liars. This is not a verb but a noun.

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

speaks -- (CW, WT) The Greek word translated as "speak" is not the ordinary "to say" or "to speak" in Greek. This word means "idle chatter," "gossip," and "the proclamations of an oracle." Jesus uses it to capture the idea of "passing on." "conveying,"  or "relaying" information because that captures both what someone gossiping and an oracle does. The word is somewhat self-effacing or derogatory. The tense is the simple past not the present as above.

missing "from"  -- (MW) The untranslated word  means "out of" or "from." The word has a number of different meanings based upon its context. However, in Greek, they use the genitive case instead of a preposition for the types of phrases that are translated into English "of" phrases. Here, the sense is "from."

missing "these"  -- (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. "These" works best here to indicate that this is plural.

his : -- (CW)  The word translated as "his" 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 word is plural, seemingly referring to his critics.

native language, -- (IP) There is nothing that can be translated as "native language" in the Greek source.

for -- The word translated as "for" introduces a statement of fact or cause, "for what," "because," "since," and "wherefore." It is only confusing because it was translated as "because" above.

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

is  -- 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. With the genitive object, the sense is "belongs to." The word also means "to exist" and where it doesn't connect to characteristics or conditions is best translated that way. -- When the verb "to be" appears early in the clause before the subject, the sense is more like "it is" or, in the plural, "there are."

a -- 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.

liar, "A liar" is a word that means, as a noun, "liar", "cheat", or the adjective, "lying," and "false."

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. 

father  -- "Father" is the Greek noun that means "father" or any male ancestor so "forefathers." It is the word that Christ uses to address his own Father.

of -- This word "of"  comes from the genitive case of the following word that requires the addition of a preposition in English.  The most common is the "of" of possession.]

lies. --(WW, WN ) The word translated as "lies" is the Greek word commonly translated as third-person pronouns in English.  The pronoun does not match the word for "lie," which is neuter, but it does match the word "liar," which is masculine so "him" is appropriate. However, that would make him the father of himself. The word can also be translated as the adjective, "lying"  which works better here. It is singular not plural.

NIV Translation Issues: 

22
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "yourselves" is not shown in the English translation.
  • WW - Wrong Word -- The word translated as "to" should be something more like "from."
  • WW - Wrong Word -- The word translated as "your" should be something more like "the."
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "devil" does not capture the specific meaning of the word.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" before "father" is not shown in the English translation.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" before "desires" is not shown in the English translation.
  • IW - Inserted Word -- The word "the" before "beginning" doesn't exist in the source.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "and" before "not" is not shown in the English translation.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "holding" does not capture the specific meaning of the word.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "to" does not capture the specific meaning of the word.
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "there" does not capture the specific meaning of the word.
  • WP -- Wrongly Placed -- The word "no" doesn't appear here but before the verb for "is."
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "relays" before "lies" is not shown in the English translation.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" before "lies" is not shown in the English translation.
  • WF - Wrong Form -  The "lies" is not an active verb but a noun "lie."
  • CW - Confusing Word -- The "speaks" does not capture the specific meaning of the word.
  • WT - Wrong Tense - The English verb  "speaks" is the present tense, but Greek verb here "relayed" is in the simple (imperfect) past. "saw."
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "from" before "his own" is not shown in the English translation.
  • MW - Missing Word -- The word "the" before "his own" is not shown in the English translation.
  • IP - Inserted Phrase-- The phrase "native language" doesn't exist in the source.
  • WW - Wrong Word -- The word translated as "lies" should be something more like "it."
  • WN  - Wrong Number- The word "lies" is translated as plural but the Greek word is singular.

Front Page Date: 

Jun 7 2022