Know, Known, Knowledge, Unknown - Vine's Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words

Know, Known, Knowledge, Unknown

[ A-1,Verb,G1097, ginosko ]
signifies to be taking in knowledge, to come to know, recognize, understand," or "to understand completely," e.g., Mark 13:28-Mark 13:29; John 13:12; John 15:18; John 21:17; 2 Corinthians 8:9; Hebrews 10:34; 1 John 2:5; 1 John 4:2, 1 John 4:6 (twice), 1 John 4:7, 1 John 4:13; 1 John 5:2, 1 John 5:20; in its past tenses it frequently means "to know in the sense of realizing," the aorist or point tense usually indicating definiteness, Matthew 13:11; Mark 7:24; John 7:26; in John 10:38 "that ye may know (aorist tense) and understand, (present tense);" John 19:4; Acts 1:7; Acts 17:19; Romans 1:21; 1 Corinthians 2:11 (2nd part), 1 Corinthians 2:14; 2 Corinthians 2:4; Ephesians 3:19; Ephesians 6:22; Philippians 2:19; Philippians 3:10; 1 Thessalonians 3:5; 2 Timothy 2:19; James 2:20; 1 John 2:13 (twice), 1 John 2:14; 1 John 3:6; 1 John 4:8; 2 John 1:1; Revelation 2:24; Revelation 3:3, Revelation 3:9. In the Passive Voice, it often signifies "to become known," e.g., Matthew 10:26; Philippians 4:5. In the sense of complete and absolute understanding on God's part, it is used e.g., in Luke 16:15; John 10:15 (of the Son as well as the Father); 1 Corinthians 3:20. In Luke 12:46, AV, it is rendered "he is ... aware."

In the NT ginosko frequently indicates a relation between the person "knowing" and the object known; in this respect, what is "known" is of value or importance to the one who knows, and hence the establishment of the relationship, e.g., especially of God's "knowledge," 1 Corinthians 8:3, "if any man love God, the same is known of Him;" Galatians 4:9, "to be known of God;" here the "knowing" suggests approval and bears the meaning "to be approved;" so in 2 Timothy 2:19; cp. John 10:14, John 10:27; Genesis 18:19; Nahum 1:7; the relationship implied may involve remedial chastisement, Amos 3:2. The same idea of appreciation as well as "knowledge" underlies several statements concerning the "knowledge" of God and His truth on the part of believers, e.g., John 8:32; John 14:20, John 14:31; John 17:3; Galatians 4:9 (1st part); 1 John 2:3, 1 John 2:13-14; 1 John 4:6, 1 John 4:8, 1 John 4:16; 1 John 5:20; such "knowledge" is obtained, not by mere intellectual activity, but by operation of the Holy Spirit consequent upon acceptance of Christ. Nor is such "knowledge" marked by finality; See e.g., 2 Peter 3:18; Hosea 6:3, RV.

The verb is also used to convey the thought of connection or union, as between man and woman, Matthew 1:25; Luke 1:34.

[ A-2,Verb,G1492, oida ]
from the same root as eidon, "to See," is a perfect tense with a present meaning, signifying, primarily, "to have seen or perceived;" hence, "to know, to have knowledge of," whether absolutely, as in Divine knowledge, e.g., Matthew 6:8, Matthew 6:32; John 6:6, John 6:64; John 8:14; John 11:42; John 13:11; John 18:4; 2 Corinthians 11:31; 2 Peter 2:9; Revelation 2:2, Revelation 2:9, Revelation 2:13, Revelation 2:19; Revelation 3:1, Revelation 3:8, Revelation 3:15; or in the case of human "knowledge," to know from observation, e.g, 1 Thessalonians 1:4-5; 1 Thessalonians 2:1; 2 Thessalonians 3:7.

The differences between ginosko (No. 1) and oida demand consideration:
(a) ginosko, frequently suggests inception or progress in "knowledge," while oida suggests fullness of "knowledge," e.g., John 8:55, "ye have not known Him" (ginosko), i.e., begun to "know," "but I know Him" (oida), i.e., "know Him perfectly;" John 13:7, "What I do thou knowest not now," i.e. Peter did not yet perceive (oida) its significance, "but thou shalt understand," i.e., "get to know (ginosko), hereafter;" John 14:7, "If ye had known Me" (ginosko), i.e., "had definitely come to know Me," "ye would have known My Father also" (oida), i.e., "would have had perception of:" "from henceforth ye know Him" (ginosko), i.e., having unconsciously been coming to the Father, as the One who was in Him, they would now consciously be in the constant and progressive experience of "knowing" Him; in Mark 4:13, "Know ye not (oida) this parable? and how shall ye know (ginosko) all the parables?" (RV), i.e., "Do ye not understand this parable? How shall ye come to perceive all ..." the intimation being that the first parable is a leading and testing one;
(b) while ginosko frequently implies an active relation between the one who "knows" and the person or thing "known" (See No. 1, above), oida expresses the fact that the object has simply come within the scope of the "knower's" perception; thus in Matthew 7:23 "I never knew you" (ginosko) suggests "I have never been in approving connection with you," whereas in Matthew 25:12, "I know you not" (oida) suggests "you stand in no relation to Me."

[ A-3,Verb,G1921, epiginosko ]
(a) "to observe, fully perceive, notice attentively, discern, recognize" (epi, "upon," and No. 1); it suggests generally a directive, a more special, recognition of the object "known" than does No. 1; it also may suggest advanced "knowledge" or special appreciation; thus, in Romans 1:32, "knowing the ordinance of God" (epiginosko) means "knowing full well," whereas in verse Romans 1:21 "knowing God" (ginosko) simply suggests that they could not avoid the perception. Sometimes epiginosko implies a special participation in the object "known," and gives greater weight to what is stated; thus in John 8:32, "ye shall know the truth," ginosko is used, whereas in 1 Timothy 4:3, "them that believe and know the truth," epiginosko lays stress on participation in the truth. Cp. the stronger statement in Colossians 1:6 (epiginosko) with that in 2 Corinthians 8:9 (ginosko), and the two verbs in 1 Corinthians 13:12, "now I know in part (ginosko); but then shall I know (piginosko) even as also I have been known (epiginosko)," "a knowledge which perfectly unites the subject with the object;
(b) "to discover, ascertain, determine," e.g., Luke 7:37; Luke 23:7; Acts 9:30; Acts 19:34; Acts 22:29; Acts 28:1; in Acts 24:11 the best mss. have this verb instead of No. 1; hence the RV, "take knowledge." J. Armitage Robinson (on Ephesians) points out that epignosis is "knowledge directed towards a particular object, perceiving, discerning," whereas gnosis is knowledge in the abstract. See ACKNOWLEDGE.

[ A-4,Verb,G4267, proginosko ]
"to know beforehand," is used
(a) of the Divine "foreknowledge" concerning believers, Romans 8:29; Israel, Romans 11:2; Christ as the Lamb of God, 1 Peter 1:20, RV, "foreknown" (AV, "foreordained");
(b) of human previous "knowledge," of a person, Acts 26:5, RV, "having knowledge of" (AV, "which knew"); of facts, 2 Peter 3:17. See FOREKNOW.

[ A-5,Verb,G1987, epistamai ]
"to know, know of, understand" (probably an old Middle Voice form of ephistemi, "to set over"), is used in Mark 14:68, "understand," which follows oida "I (neither) know;" most frequently in the Acts, Acts 10:28; Acts 15:7; Acts 18:25; Acts 19:15, Acts 19:25; Acts 20:18; Acts 22:19; Acts 24:10; Acts 26:26; elsewhere, 1 Timothy 6:4; Hebrews 11:8; James 4:14; Jude 1:10. See UNDERSTAND.

[ A-6,Verb,G4923, sunoida ]
sun, "with," and No. 2, a perfect tense with a present meaning, denotes
(a) "to share the knowledge of, be privy to," Acts 5:2;
(b) "to be conscious of," especially of guilty consciousness, 1 Corinthians 4:4, "I know nothing against (AV, by) myself." The verb is connected with suneidon, found in Acts 12:12; Acts 14:6 (in the best texts). See CONSIDER, PRIVY, WARE.

[ A-7,Verb,G50, agnoeo ]
"not to know, to be ignorant:" See IGNORANT.

[ A-8,Verb,G1107, gnorizo ]
(a) "to come to know, discover, know," Philippians 1:22, "I wot (not)," i.e., "I know not," "I have not come to know" (the RV, marg. renders it, as under
(b), "I do not make known");
(b) "to make known," whether
(I) communicating things "before unknown," Luke 2:15, Luke 2:17; in the latter some mss. have the verb diagnorizo (hence the AV, "made known abroad);" John 15:15, "I have made known;" John 17:26; Acts 2:28; Acts 7:13 (1st part), See Note
(3) below; Romans 9:22-Romans 9:23; Romans 16:26 (Passive Voice); 2 Corinthians 8:1, "we make known (to you)," RV, AV, "we do (you) to wit;" Ephesians 1:9; Ephesians 3:3, Ephesians 3:5, Ephesians 3:10 (all three in the Passive Voice); Ephesians 6:19, Ephesians 6:21; Colossians 1:27; Colossians 4:7, Colossians 4:9, "shall make known" (AV, "shall declare"); 2 Peter 1:16; or (II) reasserting things already "known," 1 Corinthians 12:3, "I give (you) to understand" (the Apostle reaffirms what they knew); 1 Corinthians 15:1, of the Gospel; Galatians 1:11 (he reminds them of what they well knew, the ground of his claim to Apostleship); Philippians 4:6 (Passive Voice), of requests to God. See CERTIFY, DECLARE (Note), UNDERSTAND, WIT, WOT.


(1) In 2 Timothy 3:10, AV, parakoloutheo, "to follow closely, follow as a standard of conduct," is translated "hast fully known" (RV, "didst follow"). See FOLLOW.

(2) In 2 Timothy 4:17, AV, plerophoreo, "to fulfill, accomplish," is translated "might be fully known" (RV, "might be fully proclaimed"). See FULFILL.

(3) In Acts 7:13, some mss. have the verb anagnorizo, "to make oneself known," "was made known," instead of No. 8 (which see).

(4) In Acts 7:13 (2nd part) the AV, "was made known" translates the phrase phaneros ginomai, "to become manifest" (RV, "became manifest"). See MANIFEST.

(5) For diagnorizo, "to make known," in Luke 2:17, See No. 8.

(6) For diagnosko, in Acts 24:22, "I will know the uttermost of," See DETERMINE, No. 5.

[ B-1,Adjective,G1110, gnostos ]
a later form of gnostos (from No. 1), most frequently denotes "known;" it is used ten times in the Acts, always with that meaning (save in Acts 4:16, where it means "notable"); twice in the Gospel of John, John 18:15-John 18:16; in Luke 2:44; Luke 23:49 it denotes "acquaintance;" elsewhere only in Romans 1:19, "(that which) may be known (of God)," lit., "the knowable of God," referring to the physical universe, in the creation of which God has made Himself "knowable," that is, by the exercise of man's natural faculties, without such supernatural revelations as those given to Israel. See ACQUAINTANCE.

[ B-2,Adjective,G5318, phaneros ]
"visible, manifest," is translated "known" in Matthew 12:16; Mark 3:12. See APPEAR, MANIFEST, OPENLY, OUTWARDLY.

[ B-3,Adjective,G1990, epistemon ]
akin to A, No. 5, "knowing, skilled," is used in James 3:13, AV, "endued with knowledge" (RV "understanding").

[ B-4,Adjective,G57, agnostos ]
the negative of No. 1, "unknown," is found in Acts 17:23.

[ C-1,Noun,G1108, gnosis ]
primarily "a seeking to know, an enquiry, investigation" (akin to A, No. 1), denotes, in the NT, "knowledge," especially of spiritual truth; it is used
(a) absolutely, in Luke 11:52; Romans 2:20; Romans 15:14; 1 Corinthians 1:5; 1 Corinthians 8:1 (twice), 1 Corinthians 8:7, 1 Corinthians 8:10-11; 1 Corinthians 13:2, 1 Corinthians 13:8; 1 Corinthians 14:6; 2 Corinthians 6:6; 2 Corinthians 8:7; 2 Corinthians 11:6; Ephesians 3:19; Colossians 2:3; 1 Peter 3:7; 2 Peter 1:5-6;
(b) with an object: in respect of

(1) God, 2 Corinthians 2:14; 2 Corinthians 10:5;

(2) the glory of God, 2 Corinthians 4:6;

(3) Christ Jesus, Philippians 3:8; 2 Peter 3:18;

(4) salvation, Luke 1:77;
(c) subjectively, of God's "knowledge," Romans 11:33; the word of "knowledge," 1 Corinthians 12:8; "knowledge" falsely so called, 1 Timothy 6:20.

[ C-2,Noun,G1922, epignosis ]
akin to A, No. 3, denotes "exact or full knowledge, discernment, recognition," and is a strengthened form of No. 1, expressing a fuller or a full "knowledge," a greater participation by the "knower" in the object "known," thus more powerfully influencing him. It is not found in the Gospels and Acts. Paul uses it 15 times (16 if Hebrews 10:26 is included) out of the 20 occurrences; Peter 4 times, all in his 2nd Epistle. Contrast Romans 1:28 (epignosis) with the simple verb in Romans 1:21. "In all the four Epistles of the first Roman captivity it is an element in the Apostle's opening prayer for his correspondents' well-being, Philippians 1:9; Ephesians 1:17; Colossians 1:9; Philemon 1:6" (Lightfoot).

It is used with reference to God in Romans 1:28; Romans 10:2; Ephesians 1:17; Colossians 1:10; 2 Peter 1:3; God and Christ, 2 Peter 1:2; Christ, Ephesians 4:13; 2 Peter 1:8; 2 Peter 2:20; the will of the Lord, Colossians 1:9; every good thing, Philemon 1:6, RV (AV, "acknowledging"); the truth, 1 Timothy 2:4; 2 Timothy 2:25, RV; 2 Timothy 3:7; Titus 1:1, RV; the mystery of God. Colossians 2:2, RV, "(that they) may know" (AV, "to the acknowledgment of"), lit., "into a full knowledge." It is used without the mention of an object in Philippians 1:9; Colossians 3:10, RV, "(renewed) unto knowledge." See ACKNOWLEDGE.

[ C-3,Noun,G56, agnosia ]
the negative of No. 1, "ignorance," is rendered "no knowledge" in 1 Corinthians 15:34, RV (AV, "not the knowledge"); in 1 Peter 2:15, ignorance. See IGNORANCE.

Note: In Ephesians 3:4, AV, sunesis, "understanding," is translated "knowledge;" RV, "understanding." For kardiognostes See HEART (knowing the).

Vine's Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words