NIV John 10:14

"I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me

New King James Version

I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own.

καὶ γινώσκουσί με τὰ ἐμά,

γινώσκουσί (ginōskousi)
Verb - Present Indicative Active - 3rd Person Plural
Strong's Greek 1097: A prolonged form of a primary verb; to 'know' in a great variety of applications and with many implications.

The Greek word is active. Why does NKJV translate it as passive?

  • Downvoted for insufficient prior research. – Lucian Aug 14 '20 at 3:36

In John 10:14c there is a difference in the text forms between:

(a) UBS5, NA28, W&H, etc, which has the verb: γινώσκουσί(ν) being indicative present active 3rd person plural; thus it is translated "[they] know". This is the text used by most modern versions like the NIV, NASB, ESV, BSB, ISV, etc.

(b) Byzantine, TR, Orthodox, etc, which has the verb γινώσκομαι being indicative present passive 1st person singular; thus it is translated "[I] am known". This is the text used by KJV, NKJV, etc.

This is why the difference in the readings. UBS5 does not list this variant in their apparatus. However, NA28 does list it and I suggest consulting the long list of MSS that support each reading. Here I will list only a few of the oldest on each side:

  • Those that have γινώσκουσί(ν) include: P45 (3rd sent), P66 (~200 AD), P75 (early 3rd), Sinaiticus (~350), Vaticanus (~370), etc
  • Those that have γινώσκομαι include: Alexandrinus, (V), D 05 (V), etc.

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