“The Church is... where the Lord is acknowledged, and where the Word is.” - The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine §242
Kempton New Church

Week 4
Day 4

    Listen:

Luke 22

Jesus is arrested

Luke 22

47 But while He yet spoke, behold, a crowd; and he who was called Judas, one of the twelve, came before them and drew near to Jesus to kiss Him.
48 But Jesus says to him, Judas, betrayest thou the Son of Man with a kiss?
49 And they who were around Him, seeing what would be, said to Him, Lord, shall we smite with the sword?
50 And one of them smote the servant of the chief priest and took off his right ear.
51 But Jesus answering said, Allow it, even to this; and touching his ear, He healed him.
52 And Jesus said to the chief priests and captains of the temple and the elders who had come against Him, Have you come out as against a robber, with swords and wooden rods?
53 When I was daily with you in the temple you stretched out no hands against Me; but this is your hour, and the authority of darkness.
54 And taking Him, they led Him away, and led Him into the house of the chief priest; and Peter followed afar off.

AC 10130:6-7. That by the touch of the hand is also signified communication, transfer, and reception is because the activity of the whole body is collected into the arms and into the hands, and in the Word interior things are expressed by means of exterior ones. From this it is that by the “arms,” the “hands,” and especially by the “right hand” is signified power... and hence by the “hands” is signified whatever pertains to man, thus the whole man insofar as he is acting.... Moreover, that all the outer senses—sight, hearing, taste, and smell—bear relation to the touch, and are kinds of touch, is known in the learned world.... [Thus] Jesus touched the ear of the deaf man and healed him (Luke 22:51).

AE 1145:9. As “swords” signify falsities destroying truths, and “woods” signify evils destroying good, so by command of the chief priests:

A multitude went out with Judas Iscariot against Jesus, with swords and staves (Matt. 26:47; Mark 14:43, 48; Luke 22:52).

This was done because all things relating to the Lord’s passion were representative of the destruction by the Jews of all things of good and truth. With the sons of Israel there were two general punishments, stoning and hanging upon wood, stoning for injuring or destroying truth, and hanging upon wood for injuring or destroying good. For this reason:

Hanging upon wood was a curse (Deut. 21:22-23).

All this makes clear that “wood” signifies good, specifically the good of the natural man, and in the contrary sense its evil.

AE 783:2. ...Falsities from evil have no power whatever, since all power is in truths from good. But falsities have power over falsities, as like over like. This can be clearly seen from the power of infernal spirits with one another, which they exercise by imaginary things and by semblances of correspondences, by which they are desirous of seeming most powerful and mighty; but yet they have no power whatever against truths, and so wholly none that it is nothing at all....

This can be seen from the fact that the hells, in which there are myriads of myriads, are so held bound by Divine truth proceeding from the Lord, that no one in them dares raise up a finger of his hand; also from this fact, that a single angel by means of truths from the Lord is able to lead, to control, to bind, or to scatter a thousand companies of evil spirits, and this merely by a look from an intention of the will. Such power also has been sometimes granted to me by the Lord.

It may seem strange that the church at its end should be in falsities and in evils from them, and in evils and in falsities from them, and yet that truths from good have all power; and it seems as if such truths might be given by the Lord by means of truths from the Word. But the reason is that falsities have power against those who are in falsities from evil; and at the end of the church these falsities reign, and when these reign, truths are not received. For this reason falsities cannot be dispersed by truths, and therefore the devil is then called powerful, and loosed from bonds.

Questions and Comments
  1. While Matthew & Mark say that Judas kissed Him, Luke does not, and in John, Judas does not even come near.
  2. Luke is the only gospel that tells about the Lord healing the servant’s ear. Is this an example of how we should act under persecution?
  3. Seeing that even small details have a spiritual meaning in the Word, such as that the multitude brought both swords and wooden (staves), can we more readily believe that the Lord watches over even the least details of our lives?
  4. We are living at the end of the first Christian Church. How can we be safe from the powers of darkness?
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