Explaining the Inner Meaning of Mark 13
Verses 1, 2. THAT the state of the church is not to be judged of from the external aspect of the truths, which the members of the church profess to believe, since if these truths be separated from the good of charity, the church itself must come to vastation and destruction.
Verses 3-6. For which reason the understandings of the members of the church ought to be opened to the light of truth, to prevent their being misled by falsities, since those are about to come, who will say that this is of faith, or that this is truth, when yet it is neither of faith, nor is it truth, but what is false.
Verse 7. Debates also and disputes will exist concerning truths.
Verse 8. And evil is about to fight against evil, and the false against the false, so that the state of the church will be changed, and there will no longer be any knowledge of what is good and true, but infection from falsities.
Verse 9. They, therefore, who are principled in what is good and true, will be in danger, first, from the perversion of truth; next, from its captivity by falsities; and all on account of the goods of love and the truths of faith from the LORD.
Verse 10. Which goods and truths must first be made known to all who are principled in good.
Verse 11. To whom instruction is given, under all infestation by falsities, to consult Divine Truth for security, rather than depend on their own prudence.
Verse 12, and first part of 13. For evil will destroy good, and what is false will destroy what is true, by bringing those heavenly principles into contempt and aversion.
Verse 13, latter part. Nevertheless no injury can be done to those who abide patiently in the LORD.
Verse 14. And who therefore are forewarned, when they observe the predicted vastation of good and truth, not to look elsewhere than to the LORD, thus to the love of Him and neighbourly love.
Verse 15. And they who are in the good of charity, ought not to take themselves to those things which relate to the doctrinals of faith.
Verse 16. And they who are in the good of truth, ought not to take themselves to the doctrinals of truth.
Verse 17. For they who are imbued with the good of love to the LORD, and with the good of innocence, will then be in danger of profaning those goods, and thus of eternal damnation.
Verse 18. They, therefore, who are principled in good and truth, ought to take heed lest a removal from those principles should be made precipitately, in a state of too much cold arising from self-love.
Verse 19. For on that occasion will be the highest degree of perversion and vastation of the church as to good and truth, which is profanation.
Verse 20. So that for the salvation of those who are in the life of good, it will be necessary that they who are of the church should be removed from interior goods and truths to exterior.
Verses 21-23. And the doctrine of those who are in a holy external principle, but in a profane internal, is to be guarded against, because abounding with falsities.
Verses 24, 25. And when there is no longer any faith remaining, all love to the LORD and neighbourly love will disappear, and the knowledges of good and truth will perish, and thus the foundations of the church will be removed.
Verse 26. And then shall be the appearing of Truth Divine through the revelation of the Word as to its internal sense.
Verse 27. Then too shall be election through the influx of holy good and truth from the LORD by the angels, and thus the establishment of a New Church.
Verse 28. And when this New Church is erecting by the LORD, then first of all appears the good of the natural principle, with its affections and truths.
Verse 29. And when all the things above spoken of appear, then will be the consummation of the church, that is, the last judgement and coming of the LORD, consequently then the Old Church will be rejected, and the New established.
Verse 30. In the meantime the Jewish nation, together with their worship, will not be extirpated like other nations.
Verse 31. And the internals and externals of the former church will perish, but the Word of the LORD will remain.
Verse 32. And the state of the church at that time, as to goods and truths, will not appear to any one, either in earth or in heaven, but to the LORD alone.
Verse 33. Therefore man ought to procure to himself spiritual life, which is life from the LORD, because be is in ignorance what the state of his life is, which is to remain to eternity.
Verse 34. For the LORD gives to all who are in the church the knowledges of truth and good from the Word, with the faculty of perceiving them, and of securing them from injury.
Verses 35-37. Wherefore all ought to keep their minds open to the light of truth, to preserve them from the darkness of evil and error.