Matthew 19

Study the Inner Meaning

English: King James Version

← Matthew 18   Matthew 20 →

1 And it came to pass, that when Jesus had finished these sayings, he departed from Galilee, and came into the coasts of Judaea beyond Jordan;

2 And great multitudes followed him; and he healed them there.

3 The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause?

4 And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female,

5 And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh?

6 Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

7 They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away?

8 He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so.

9 And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery.

10 His disciples say unto him, If the case of the man be so with his wife, it is not good to marry.

11 But he said unto them, All men cannot receive this saying, save they to whom it is given.

12 For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother's womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven's sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.

13 Then were there brought unto him little children, that he should put his hands on them, and pray: and the disciples rebuked them.

14 But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.

15 And he laid his hands on them, and departed thence.

16 And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?

17 And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.

18 He saith unto him, Which? Jesus said, Thou shalt do no murder, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness,

19 Honour thy father and thy mother: and, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

20 The young man saith unto him, All these things have I kept from my youth up: what lack I yet?

21 Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me.

22 But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions.

23 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, Verily I say unto you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven.

24 And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

25 When his disciples heard it, they were exceedingly amazed, saying, Who then can be saved?

26 But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.

27 Then answered Peter and said unto him, Behold, we have forsaken all, and followed thee; what shall we have therefore?

28 And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

29 And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life.

30 But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first.

← Matthew 18   Matthew 20 →
   Study the Inner Meaning
From Swedenborg's Works

Explanations or references:

Arcana Coelestia 128, 233, 394, 1017, 1059, 1072, 2027, ...

Apocalypse Revealed 79, 81, 233, 273, 284, 618, 798, ...

Conjugial Love 50, 112, 156, 194, 215, 255, 276, ...

Divine Providence 230, 324

Doctrine of the Lord 25, 45

Sacred Scripture 51

Heaven and Hell 281, 357, 365, 372

True Christian Religion 226, 729


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 9, 39, 102, 186, 206, 253, 254, ...

De Verbo (The Word) 5, 15

Justification 31, 44

Spiritual Experiences 1061, 1321, 1466

Marriage 119

Scriptural Confirmations 4, 14, 33, 87

Hop to Similar Bible Verses

Genesis 1:27, 2:24, 5:2, 18:14

Exodus 20:12, 14

Leviticus 18:5

Deuteronomy 5:16, 22:19, 29

Nehemiah 9:29

Job 42:2

Psalms 62:11, 100:5

Jeremiah 32:17

Daniel 7:9

Zechariah 12, 8:6

Malachi 2:16

Word/Phrase Explanations

came to pass
The phrase “it came to pass,” often also translated as “it happened,” generally indicates the end of one spiritual state and the beginning of a...

Pass
'To pass,' as in Genesis 31:52, signifies flowing in. 'To pass the night,' as in Genesis 24:54, signifies having peace. 'To pass through,' as in...

Sayings
'Sayings' denotes persuasion. 'Sayings,' when related to Jehovah, signify informing or instructing.

galilee
Galilee was the northernmost province of Biblical Judea, a hilly area relatively remote from the center of Jewish culture in Jerusalem and bordered by foreigners...

jordan
The river Jordan separates the land of Canaan from the lands to the east. This separation represents the division of the human mind into an internal...

Pharisees
The Pharisees were a sect of the Jewish church at the time of the New Testament. The name comes from a root that means "separate",...

man
"Man" is a tricky word to discuss, because the Hebrew of the Old Testament uses six different words that are generally translated as "man," with...

Put
'To put' has reference to order, arrangement, application, and influx.

said
As with many common verbs, the meaning of “to say” in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Who is speaking? Who is hearing? What...

beginning
In the Word, "beginning" doesn't just mean the beginning of something in time. In the inner sense, it means the initial phase of a spiritual...

male
The relationship between men and women is deep and nuanced, and one entire book of the Writings – Conjugial Love or Love in Marriage –...

female
Female signifies good.

father
Father in the Word means what is most interior, and in those things that are following the Lord's order, it means what is good. In...

Father and mother
Father and mother, which a man is to leave, as in Genesis 2:24, and Matthew 19:4, 5, in a spiritual sense, are his proprium of...

mother
In general, mothers in the Bible represent the Lord's church on earth, or the church among those who know and follow the Lord. In some...

one
A company might have executives setting policy and strategy, engineers designing products, line workers building them, managers handling personnel and others handling various functions. They...

flesh
Flesh has several meanings just in its most obvious form. It can mean all living creatures as when the Lord talks about the flood "destroying...

God
The Lord is love itself, expressed in the form of wisdom itself. Love, then, is His essence, His inmost. Wisdom - the loving understanding of...

moses
Moses's name appears 814 times in the Bible (KJV), third-most of any one character (Jesus at 961 actually trails David at 991). He himself wrote...

command
To command is to give an order that something must be done, and is directed to an individual, or a group. It is an imperative,...

give
Like other common verbs, the meaning of "give" in the Bible is affected by context: who is giving what to whom? In general, though, giving...

hearts
The heart means love. A good heart means love to the Lord and to the neighbor while a hard or stony heart means the love...

wives
The Hebrew of the Old Testament has six different common words which are generally translated as "wife," which largely overlap but have different nuances. Swedenborg...

fornication
'And [Tyre] shall turn to her hire, and shall commit fornication,' as in Isaiah 23:17, signifies the vaunting and boasting of falsity.

marry
When the Bible talks about marriage, marrying, and weddings, it is also talking on a deeper level about the spiritual marriage of good and truth,...

disciples
When we read the Gospels and see Jesus addressing the disciples, we assume His words are meant for us as well. And indeed they are!...

born
In a general sense, being "born" in the Bible represents one spiritual state producing another, usually some form of love or affection producing or "giving...

Womb
'Womb,' as in Genesis 49:25, signifies the conjunction of good and truth. The term 'belly' is used where truths are being discussed, and the term...

kingdom
In the most general sense, a kingdom in the Bible represents a church. In a more specific sense, a kingdom represents a church in regards...

heaven
"Heaven" and "heavens" are used many times in the Bible, with a couple of variations of meaning. Sometimes it is relatively literal, including times when...

children
A child is a young boy or girl in the care of parents, older than a suckling or an infant, but not yet an adolescent....

hands
'Washing of the hands' was an ancient declaration of innocence, and signifies purification from evils and falsities, as in Psalms 73:13 and Matthew 27:24.

pray
When people pray in the Bible, it means they are opening up their internal states. When it is the Lord praying, or a figure who...

come
As with common verbs in general, the meaning of “come” in the Bible is highly dependent on context – its meaning is determined largely by...

good
It seems rather circular to say that “good” in the Bible represents good, but in a general sense it’s true! The case is this: The...

life
In John 14:6, 'the way is doctrine,' 'the truth' is every thing pertaining to doctrine, and 'the life' is the essential good which is the...

none
'No one,' or 'none' denotes the negative side of something.

enter
All changes of place in the Bible represent changes in spiritual state. “Entering” – usually used as entering someone’s house or “going in unto” someone...

Keep the commandments
To keep the commandments,' as in Revelation 14:12, signifies living according to the precepts, which the Decalogue contains in summary.

keep
"Keeping" in the Bible generally has to do with controlling the actual actions of life, though in some cases it can mean holding something away...

commandments
In Deuteronomy 11:1, 'statutes' signify the external parts of the Word, such as rituals, and representations of the internal sense. 'Judgments' signify the internal parts...

murder
'To slay a man to his wounding,' means extinguishing faith, and 'to slay a young man to his hurt,' signifies extinguishing charity, as in Genesis...

Steal
In a natural sense, the commandment 'Thou shalt not steal,' in Exodus 20:15, means, according to the letter, not stealing, robbing, or committing piracy in...

bear false witness
When people lie or speak falsely in the Bible, It represents what Swedenborg calls "falsity of faith" and the resulting "evil of faith." This is...

bear
Like many verbs, the spiritual meaning of "bearing" something depends greatly on context – what it is that's being borne, and why. It is further...

love
To some degree, there really is no spiritual meaning to the word “love” in the Bible. Why? Because if you truly love another, that is...

young
'The son of a cow' signifies the celestial natural level and natural exterior good.

youth
'Tender of age' denotes the state of truths newly received not yet genuine.

lack
For something to “fail” in the Bible means there is not enough understanding of truth and desire for good for someone to attain a higher...

Perfect
'The days of the perfect' signifies the states of people who are in good and truths from good.

go
In the physical world, the places we inhabit and the distances between them are physical realities, and we have to get our physical bodies through...

Sell
'To sell,' as in Genesis 41:56, means transferring to another as their own, because what is sold becomes the property of the one who buys...

Poor
The poor, maimed, lame, and blind,' as in Luke 14:21, signify the uninstructed Gentiles who were in lives of good.

Treasure
'Treasure,' as in Matthew 13:44, signifies divine truth in the Word.

follow
The basic meaning of "follow" in the Bible is pretty obvious if we consider what it means to "follow the Lord." That obviously doesn't mean...

heard
Thanks to modern science, we now understand that hearing actually happens in the brain, not the ears. The ears collect vibrations in the air and...

Possessions
'Possessions' are spiritual riches, which are knowledges from the Word.

rich
When the Bible talks about riches, it is talking about spiritual wealth, not worldly wealth – ideas and knowledge about the Lord and spiritual things,...

Camel
A camel (Matt. 22:24) signifies scientific knowledge. Camels are confirming scientifics, and cattle are the knowledges of good and truth (Jer. 49:32.)

eye of a
'The eye of a needle' signifies spiritual truth.

eye
It’s common to say “I see” when we understand something. And indeed, “seeing” in the Bible represents grasping and understanding spiritual things. So it makes...

saved
To be saved or rescued means getting true ideas that we can hold to even in the face of a storm of false thinking. Sometimes...

all things
The Lord is life itself, is the Creator of the universe, and is the source of life on an ongoing basis. So in a literal...

Peter
Key of David,' as in Revelation 3:7, signifies the Lord's omnipotence over heaven and hell. 'The keys of Peter,' in Matthew 18:18, signify the same...

Son
'A son,' as in Genesis 5:28, signifies the rise of a new church. 'Son,' as in Genesis 24:3, signifies the Lord’s rationality regarding good. 'A...

son of man
The Lord, in some places, calls Himself 'the son of God,' at other times, 'the son of man (ἄνθρωπος).' This is always according to the...

Sit
'To sit before Jehovah' is to be with Him, and so, it also means willing and acting from Him. 'To stand before Him,' is to...

Throne
'The Lord's throne' signifies, in general, the whole heaven, and specifically, the spiritual heaven, and by extension, divine truth proceeding, and so, everything of heaven...

glory
Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving (Rev. 7.) signify divine spiritual things of the Lord.

upon
'Upon' or 'over' signifies being within.

twelve
'Twelve' and 'twenty-four' signify everything, and refer to truths.

judging
It’s easy to see the connection between judging and truth. In a court of law, the judge’s whole purpose is to find the truth. In...

Twelve tribes of Israel
'The twelve tribes of Israel' signify all the goods and truths of the church in their order. 'The twelve angels' in Revelation 21:12 signify the...

Tribes
In general, 'the twelve tribes' signify every aspect of the doctrine of truth and good, or of faith and love. Truth and good, or faith...

Israel
'Israel,' in Jeremiah 23:8, signifies the spiritual natural church. The children of Israel dispersed all the literal sense of the Word by falsities. 'The children...

Every one
The phrase “Every one,” where it occurs in Genesis 20:7, signifies every thing or all things.

Brethren
Brethren (Gen. 27:29) signify the affections of good.

Lands
'Lands' of different nations are used in the Word to signify the different kinds of love prevalent in the inhabitants.

name
It's easy to see that names are important in the Bible. Jehovah changed Abram and Sarai to Abraham and Sarah, changed Jacob to Israel and...

inherit
In Biblical times, possessions passed from fathers to sons, a patriarchal system that would not be accepted in today's society – but one that is...

everlasting
In many cases, the use of “eternity” in the Bible is pretty literal, simple meaning forever. This is especially true when the text is referring...

many
Intellectual things – ideas, knowledge, facts, even insight and understanding – are more separate and free-standing than emotional things, and it’s easier to imagine numbering...

first
Why would it be insulting for a man to refer to his married partner as his “first wife”? Because it implies there will be a...

Last
'The first and the last' signifies that the Lord is the only God.

Resources for parents and teachers

The items listed here are provided courtesy of our friends at the General Church of the New Jerusalem. You can search/browse their whole library at the New Church Vineyard website.


 Introduction to Life After Death
Lesson outline provides teaching ideas with questions for discussion, projects, and activities.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 Let the Children Come to Me
Coloring Page | Ages 7 - 14

 Like a Merchant Seeking Pearls
"We have to be able to recognize the pearl of great price when we find it and be willing to forsake all else for its sake. To know the source of happiness is a great thing; to be willing to sacrifice all else in the quest for it is even greater."
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

 Memory Verse: Marriage of Good and Truth
Activity | Ages 4 - 14

 Obtaining Conjugial Love
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

 Preparing to Receive Conjugial Love
Article | Ages 15 - 17

 Scroll of Angelic Appearances in Christmas Story
Project | Ages 7 - 14

 The Face and Clothing of Love
Genuine love of marriage is seen in friendship, which is described as the face and clothing of conjugial love. To be a good spouse is to be a genuine friend.
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

 The Lord as Father
Coloring Page | Ages 7 - 14

 The Sense of Touch
Touch is an important aspect of relationships with others. When we touch another person we should keep in mind what's best for others as well as what's best for ourselves.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 11 - 17

 Truly Christian Charity
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

 Two Become One
Use 2 interlocking hearts to picture the way a couple can grow to become one in mind and heart.
Project | Ages 4 - 10

 What God Hath Joined Together
Article | Ages 15 - 17

 Why Be Religious? For the Sake of True Married Love
Article | Ages over 15


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