Gospel of St. John 1:6-10 (Greek)

Study Classical Greek in the Classical Liberal Arts Academy

The lesson below belongs to the Classical Liberal Arts Academy’s Greek Reading I course. In this course, we study the Gospel of St. John in the New Testament. Students wishing to master the lesson below are to complete translation exercises daily from Greek into English and English into Greek, until every Greek word and its English meaning are memorized.

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Text

6 Ἐγένετο ἄνθρωπος, ἀπεσταλμένος παρὰ θεοῦ, ὄνομα αὐτῷ Ἰωάννης: 7 οὗτος ἦλθεν εἰς μαρτυρίαν, ἵνα μαρτυρήσῃ περὶ τοῦ φωτός, ἵνα πάντες πιστεύσωσιν δι’ αὐτοῦ. 8 οὐκ ἦν ἐκεῖνος τὸ φῶς, ἀλλ’ ἵνα μαρτυρήσῃ περὶ τοῦ φωτός. 9 Ἦν τὸ φῶς τὸ ἀληθινόν, ὃ φωτίζει πάντα ἄνθρωπον, ἐρχόμενον εἰς τὸν κόσμον. 10 ἐν τῷ κόσμῳ ἦν, καὶ ὁ κόσμος δι’ αὐτοῦ ἐγένετο, καὶ ὁ κόσμος αὐτὸν οὐκ ἔγνω. 1

Exposition

Use the following guide to study the meaning of each Greek word in context. 2

6 Ἐγένετο ἄνθρωπος, ἀπεσταλμένος παρὰ θεοῦ, ὄνομα αὐτῷ Ἰωάννης:

  • ἐγένετο – verb, “there was” (fuit)
  • ἄνθρωπος – substantive noun, “man” (homo)
  • ἀπεσταλμένος – participle, “sent” (missus)
  • παρὰ – preposition (+gen.), “from” (a)
  • θεοῦ – substantive noun, “God” (Deo)
  • ὄνομα – substantive noun, “name” (nomen)
  • αὐτῷ – pronoun, “for him” (cui)
  • Ἰωάννης – proper substantive noun, “John” (Ioannes)

Translation: There was (a) man, sent from God, (the) name for him (was) John;

7 οὗτος ἦλθεν εἰς μαρτυρίαν, ἵνα μαρτυρήσῃ περὶ τοῦ φωτός, ἵνα πάντες πιστεύσωσιν δι’ αὐτοῦ.

  • οὗτος – pronoun, “this” (hic)
  • ἦλθεν – verb, “(he) came” (venit)
  • εἰς – preposition, “for” (in)
  • μαρτυρίαν – substantive noun, “witness” (testimonium)
  • ἵνα – conjunction, “so that” (ut)
  • μαρτυρήσῃ – verb, “(he) might bear witness” (perhiberet)
  • περὶ – preposition, “concerning” (de)
  • τοῦ – def. article, “the”
  • φωτός – substantive noun, “light” (lumine)
  • πάντες – adjective noun, “all” (omnes)
  • πιστεύσωσιν – verb, “(they) might believe” (crederent)
  • δι’ (δια) – preposition, “through” (per)
  • αὐτοῦ – pronoun, “him” (illum)

Translation: This (man) came for (a) witness, so that (he) might bear witness concerning the light, so that all (men) might believe through him.

8 οὐκ ἦν ἐκεῖνος τὸ φῶς, ἀλλ’ ἵνα μαρτυρήσῃ περὶ τοῦ φωτός. 

  • οὐκ – adverb, “not” (non)
  • ἦν – verb, “was” (erat)
  • ἐκεῖνος – pronoun, “he” (ille)
  • τὸ – def. article, “the”
  • φῶς – substantive noun, “light”
  • ἀλλ’ (ἀλλα) – conjunction, “but” (sed)
  • ἵνα – conjunction, “so that” (ut)
  • μαρτυρήσῃ – verb, “(he) might bear witness” (perhiberet)
  • περὶ – preposition (+ gen), “concerning” (de)
  • τοῦ – def. article, “the”
  • φωτός – substantive noun, “light” (lumine)

Translation: Not was he the light, but (he came) so that he might bear witness concerning the light.

9 Ἦν τὸ φῶς τὸ ἀληθινόν, ὃ φωτίζει πάντα ἄνθρωπον, ἐρχόμενον εἰς τὸν κόσμον.

  • ἦν – verb, “(it) was” (erat)
  • τὸ – def. article, “the”
  • φῶς – substantive noun, “light” (lux)
  • ἀληθινόν – adjective noun, “true” (vera)
  • ὃ – pronoun, “which” (quae)
  • φωτίζει – verb, “(it) enlightens” (illuminat)
  • πάντα – adjective noun, “every” (omnem)
  • ἄνθρωπον – substantive noun, “man” (hominem)
  • ἐρχόμενον – participle, “coming” (venientem)
  • εἰς – preposition, “into” (in)
  • τὸν – def. article, “the”
  • κόσμον – substantive noun, “world” (mundum)

Translation: (It) was the light the true, which enlightens every man, coming into the world.

10 ἐν τῷ κόσμῳ ἦν, καὶ ὁ κόσμος δι’ αὐτοῦ ἐγένετο, καὶ ὁ κόσμος αὐτὸν οὐκ ἔγνω.

  • ἐν – preposition, “in” (in)
  • τῷ – def. article, “the”
  • κόσμῳ – substantive noun, “world” (mundo)
  • ἦν – verb, “(he) was” (erat)
  • καὶ – conjunction, “and” (et)
  • ὁ – def. article, “the”
  • κόσμος – substantive noun, “world” (mundus)
  • δι’ (δια) – preposition, “through” (per)
  • αὐτοῦ – pronoun, “him” (ipsum)
  • ἐγένετο – verb, “(it) was made” (factus est)
  • αὐτὸν – pronoun, “him” (eum)
  • οὐκ – adverb, “not” (non)
  • ἔγνω – verb, “(it) knew” (cognovit)

Translation: In the world (he) was, and the world through him was made, and the world him not knew.

Translation

The following is a literal based on the expositions above.

7 There was (a) man, sent from God, (the) name for him (was) John; 8 This (man) came for (a) witness, so that (he) might bear witness concerning the light, so that all (men) might believe through him. 9 (It) was the light the true, which enlightens every man, coming into the world. 10 In the world (he) was, and the world through him was made, and the world him not knew.

Notes

  1. Novum Testamentum Graece (1993) Barbara and Kurt Aland, eds. Stuttgart: Deutsche Bibelgesellschaft.
  2. Henry George Liddell, Robert Scott, a greek-english lexicon. Henry George Liddell, Robert Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon, Α α. (n.d.). Retrieved December 3, 2021, from http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.04.0057.
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