From Swedenborg's Works


True Christianity #102

True Christianity (Rose translation)      

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102. There is a belief that the Lord in his human manifestation not only was but still is the Son of Mary. This is a blunder, though, on the part of the Christian world. It is true that he was the Son of Mary; it is not true that he still is. As the Lord carried out the acts of redemption, he put off the human nature from his mother and put on a human nature from his Father. This is how it came about that the Lord's human nature is divine and that in him God is human and a human is God. The fact that he put off the human nature from his mother and put on a divine nature from his father - a divine human nature - can be seen from his never referring to Mary as his mother, as the following passages show: "The mother of Jesus said to him, 'They have no wine. ' Jesus said to her, 'What do I have to do with you, woman? My hour has not yet come'" (John 2:4). Elsewhere it says, "Jesus on the cross saw his mother and the disciple he loved standing next to her. He said to his mother, 'Woman, behold your son. ' Then he said to the disciple, 'Behold your mother'" (John 19:26-27). On one occasion he did not acknowledge her: "There was a message for Jesus from people who said, 'Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, and they want to see you. ' Jesus said in reply, 'My mother and my brothers are these people who are hearing the Word of God and doing it'" (Luke 8:20-21; Matthew 12:46-49; Mark 3:31-35). So the Lord called her "woman," not "mother," and gave her to John to be his mother. In other passages she is called his mother, but not by the Lord himself.

(References: John 2:3-4; Matthew 12:46-50)

[2] Another piece of supporting evidence is that the Lord did not acknowledge himself to be the son of David. In the Gospels we read,

Jesus asked the Pharisees, saying, "What do you think about the Christ? Whose son is he?" They say, "David's. " He said to them, "Why then does David in the spirit call him his Lord when he says, 'The Lord said to my Lord, "Sit at my right hand until I place your enemies as a footstool for your feet?"' If David calls him Lord, how is he his son?" And no one could answer him a word. (Matthew 22:41-46; Mark 12:35-37; Luke 20:41-44; Psalms 110:1)

[3] Here I will add something previously unknown. On one occasion I was given an opportunity to talk to Mother Mary. She happened past, and I saw her in heaven over my head in white clothing apparently made of silk. Then, stopping for a while, she said that she had been the Lord's mother in the sense that he was born from her, but by the time he became God he had put off everything human that came from her. Therefore she adores him as her God and does not want anyone to see him as her son, because everything in him is divine.

From the points above another truth now becomes manifest: Jehovah is as human in what is first as he is in what is last, as the following passages indicate: "I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the One who is, who was, and who is to come, the Almighty" (Revelation 1:8, 11). When John saw the Son of Humankind in the middle of seven lampstands, he fell at his feet as if dead; but the Son of Humankind laid his right hand on John and said, "I am the First and the Last" (Revelation 1:13, 17; 21:6). "Behold, I am coming quickly to give to all according to their work. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last" (Revelation 22:12-13). And in Isaiah, "Thus said Jehovah, the King of Israel and its Redeemer, Jehovah Sabaoth: I am the First and the Last" (Isaiah 44:6; 48:12).

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From Swedenborg's Works

Inbound References:

True Christian Religion 342

   Parallel Passages:

The Last Judgment (Continuation) 66

Last Judgment (Posthumous) 69

Spiritual Experiences 5834, 5992

True Christian Religion 827

Other New Christian Commentary

Thanks to the Swedenborg Foundation for the permission to use this translation.

The Bible


John 2:4

English: King James Version         

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4 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what have I to do with thee? mine hour is not yet come.

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Explanation of John 2      

By Rev. John Clowes M.A.

Explaining the Inner Meaning of John 2

Verses 2:1, 2. That in the fullness of time the church was established amongst the Gentiles, through the affection of good, and a desire thus kindled to attain conjunction with the divine good in the Lord's Divine Humanity, and with all the holy truths thence derived.

Verse 2:3. That on this occasion it is perceived by the affection of good, that there is no longer any interior truth in the church, and application is accordingly made to the divine truth for the restoration of such truth.

Verse 2:4. But this application is not immediately granted, because the church was not yet in a state to receive interior truth.

Verse 2:5. Therefore, in order to induce such a state, it is dictated by the affection of good to all the lower principles of the natural mind, to submit themselves to the control and government of the divine truth, in the Lord's Divine Humanity.

Verses 2:6, 7. And at the same time it is required of the divine truth, that those things of the word, which are representative of divine things, should be regarded as containing in them all the divine and spiritual truths of heaven and the church.

Verse 2:8. And that instruction should be given from the Word, according to this idea of its contents, to all those who are principled in the knowledges of truth.

Verses 2:9, 10. But when they, who were so principled, perceived internal truth in external, they perceived at the same time that every church commences from truths derived from good, but closes in truths not of good, on which occasion genuine truth is again opened by the Lord.

Verse 2:11. Which opening of genuine truth is of the divine operation, to the intent that mankind, being enlightened by the spiritual or internal sense of the Holy Word, may be led to acknowledge the Lord in his Divine Humanity.

Verse 2:12. That after this opening of genuine truth, the church is brought into a state of consolation and refreshment.

Verses 2:13, 14, 15, 16. That the Lord initiated his Human [principle] into representative worship and the doctrine of the church, and at the same time purified that worship by teaching, that all natural, spiritual, and celestial affections, together with the knowledges of what is good and true, were not to be confounded with divine things, but to be seen and kept distinct from the divine source from which they flowed.

Verse 2:17. Thus teaching in agreement with the Word, from the ardency of his divine love.

Verses 2:18, 19, 20, 21. That the glorification of the Lord's Humanity is the grand confirming testimony of the truth of all that he said and did, and thus of his being the divine truth itself, which is God.

Verse 2:22. Because this glorification is treated of in the Word throughout, and from it the Word derives its sanctity, and inspires man with a principle of heavenly faith.

Verses 2:23, 24, 25. That a miraculous faith prevailed in the church, or a faith grounded in the evidence of miracles more than in the affection of good and truth, which faith therefore is not receptive of good and truth from the Lord, who scrutinizes by his divine truth all the qualities and characters of man's faith.

From Swedenborg's Works

Explanations or references:

Arcana Coelestia 2574, 2649

Apocalypse Revealed 316

The Lord 35

True Christian Religion 102

References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 205, 376

Spiritual Experiences 5992

Marriage 102

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