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John 10:11-16

Context

10:11 “I am the good 1  shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life 2  for the sheep. 10:12 The hired hand, 3  who is not a shepherd and does not own sheep, sees the wolf coming and abandons 4  the sheep and runs away. 5  So the wolf attacks 6  the sheep and scatters them. 10:13 Because he is a hired hand and is not concerned about the sheep, 7  he runs away. 8 

10:14 “I am the good shepherd. I 9  know my own 10  and my own know me – 10:15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father – and I lay down my life 11  for 12  the sheep. 10:16 I have 13  other sheep that do not come from 14  this sheepfold. 15  I must bring them too, and they will listen to my voice, 16  so that 17  there will be one flock and 18  one shepherd.

1 tn Or “model” (see R. E. Brown, John [AB], 1:386, who argues that “model” is a more exact translation of καλός [kalos] here).

2 tn Or “The good shepherd dies willingly.”

sn Jesus speaks openly of his vicarious death twice in this section (John 10:11, 15). Note the contrast: The thief takes the life of the sheep (10:10), the good shepherd lays down his own life for the sheep. Jesus is not speaking generally here, but specifically: He has his own substitutionary death on the cross in view. For a literal shepherd with a literal flock, the shepherd’s death would have spelled disaster for the sheep; in this instance it spells life for them (Compare the worthless shepherd of Zech 11:17, by contrast).

3 sn Jesus contrasts the behavior of the shepherd with that of the hired hand. This is a worker who is simply paid to do a job; he has no other interest in the sheep and is certainly not about to risk his life for them. When they are threatened, he simply runs away.

4 tn Grk “leaves.”

5 tn Or “flees.”

6 tn Or “seizes.” The more traditional rendering, “snatches,” has the idea of seizing something by force and carrying it off, which is certainly possible here. However, in the sequence in John 10:12, this action precedes the scattering of the flock of sheep, so “attacks” is preferable.

7 tn Grk “does not have a care for the sheep.”

8 tc The phrase “he runs away” is lacking in several important mss (Ì44vid,45,66,75 א A*vid B D L [W] Θ 1 33 1241 al co). Most likely it was added by a later scribe to improve the readability of vv. 12-13, which is one long sentence in Greek. It has been included in the translation for the same stylistic reasons.

9 tn Grk “And I.” Because of the difference between Greek style, which often begins sentences or clauses with “and,” and English style, which generally does not, καί (kai) has not been translated here.

10 tn The direct object is frequently omitted in Greek and must be supplied from the context. Here it could be “sheep,” but Jesus was ultimately talking about “people.”

11 tn Or “I die willingly.”

12 tn Or “on behalf of” or “for the sake of.”

13 tn Grk “And I have.” Because of the difference between Greek style, which often begins sentences or clauses with “and,” and English style, which generally does not, καί (kai) has not been translated here.

14 tn Or “that do not belong to”; Grk “that are not of.”

15 sn The statement I have other sheep that do not come from this sheepfold almost certainly refers to Gentiles. Jesus has sheep in the fold who are Jewish; there are other sheep which, while not of the same fold, belong to him also. This recalls the mission of the Son in 3:16-17, which was to save the world – not just the nation of Israel. Such an emphasis would be particularly appropriate to the author if he were writing to a non-Palestinian and primarily non-Jewish audience.

16 tn Grk “they will hear my voice.”

17 tn Grk “voice, and.”

18 tn The word “and” is not in the Greek text, but must be supplied to conform to English style. In Greek it is an instance of asyndeton (omission of a connective), usually somewhat emphatic.



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