Luke 11:18 If Satan also be divided against himself, how shall his kingdom stand?

KJV : 

Luke 11:18 If Satan also be divided against himself, how shall his kingdom stand? because ye say that I cast out devils through Beelzebub.

Literal Verse: 

If, however, also the opponent from himself has been divided, how is it going to be established? That kingdom of his? Seeing that you said by Beelzebub I am casting out for myself these demons, 

What is Lost in Translation: 

This humor in Matthew 12:26  and Matthew 12:27 is also seen in this verse. The punchline form is maintained, but the idea used lightly, at the end of the verse, is "that kingdom of his?" There is also a very interesting word here by which Jesus says directly that he is being equated with a demon. 

The "if" here expresses a condition but it means nothing regarding whether that condition is met or not. It also means "if ever" and "whenever."

An untranslated Greek word usually translated as "but" appears here. Since it always falls in the second position, translating it as "however" often captures its feeling better. 

"Satan" is an Aramaic word meaning "adversary" or "one who opposes another in purpose or act." The meaning that it has today, as the enemy of God or personification of evil, comes from Christian traditions unknown at the time the Gospels were written. It appears twice in a row: the first time as the subject of the sentence and the second as the object. This is consistent with the previous verse, where the subjects also acted on themselves. (More about Satan and life's adversity in this article.) This verb is in the present tense. 

The Greek word translated as "also" is used as the conjunction "and", but it also is used to add emphasis ("also").

"Be divided" is  the uncommon  verb, used in the previous verse that means "to divide", "to separate," and "to be divided." It is a more complex form word that the word used in Matthew and Luke.  It is a passive form. Satan is being divided. 

The "against" is the preposition meaning "from" as a source. It can be "by" but with the passive verb, the sense is "from" himself. 

The word translated as "himself" is the Greek word used as a reflexive pronoun. While the form of the verbs doesn't act on themselves. 

"How" is the adverb that means "how", "by any means", and "I suppose". 

The word translated as "kingdom" can be the region, the reign, the castle or the authority of a ruler. Christ does not seem to use it to mean a physical region, so its translation as "reign" or "realm" seems more appropriate. This is especially true because the "reign" of a king means the execution of his will.

The verb translated as "shall stand" means "to make stand", "to set up", "to establish and similar words. Like the English words "put" and "set," it has a number of specific meanings from "to put down [in writing]", "to bury", "to establish", "to make", "to cause," and "to assign."

The word translated as "because" introduces a statement of fact or cause.

The word translated as "Ye say" is the most common word that means "to say," and "to speak."

"Cast out" is a Greek verb that means "throw out." Depending on the context, it can mean "toss out", "turn out," or "take out." It is usually translated as "cast out" in the NT. The verb form is active and not the form used to indicate someone acting on themselves. 

There is a "me" that is untranslated in its true form. It is bject of "cast out", that is, the same form as the "demons" below. So Jesus says "I cast out myself". What does this mean? It could be a joke where he is making fun of his attackers for suggesting that he is working with Satan or Beelzebub. It could also use the personal pronoun to me "for myself" meaning "working for myself". 

"Devils" is a Greek word that means "divinity", "divine power", "a lower divine being," and "evil spirit. "Evil spirit" is a New Testament usage or interpretation. More about Biblical use in this article.) Today, we would use a psychological term for these disorders, like "delusions", or, "personal demons".  It is in the form of "the demons" or "these demons", that is, introduced by an article. 

The word translated as "through" means "in", "within", "with," or "among." It can also mean "by" in a causal since. 

Christ refers to the personalization of evil with the term "Beelzebub"It is not based upon any Greek word. The word "Ba'al Zebub" ("Lord of the Flies" or "Lord of the Flyers") is a Hebrew pun on "Ba'al Zebul" meaning "Lord of the Manor". Christ refers to this pun in Matthew 10:25 using the Greek word "master of the estate" to introduce it. However, in Matthew 12:27, Christ uses this term to refer to the refer to the controller of demons. For more information, see this article.

Greek : 

Greek Vocabulary: 

εἰ (prep) "If" is from ei, which is the particle used to express conditions "if" (implying nothing about its fulfillment) or indirect questions, "whether." It also means "if ever", "in case," and "whenever." It is combined with various conjunctions to create derivative conditions.

δὲ (conj/adv) Untranslated is de which means "but" and "on the other hand." It is the particle that joins sentences in an adversarial way but can also be a weak connective ("and") and explanation of cause ("so") and a condition ("if"). --

καὶ (conj) "Also" is from kai, which is the conjunction joining phrases and clauses, "and," or "but." After words implying sameness, "as" (the same opinion as you). Used in series, joins positive with negative "Not only...but also." Also used to give emphasis, "even", "also," and "just."

Σατανᾶς (noun sg masc nom) "Satan" is satanas which is an Aramaic word meaning "adversary", "opponents," or "one who opposes another in purpose or act. "

ἐφ᾽  (prep) "Against" is epi, which means "on", "upon", "at", "by", "before", "across," "during", and "against."

ἑαυτὸν   (adj sg masc acc) "Himself" is from heautouis a reflexive pronoun that means "himself", "herself", "itself", "themselves," and "ourselves." It is an alternative to autos.

 διεμερίσθη,  [uncommon](verb 3rd sg aor ind pass) "Be divided" is from diamerizowhich means ""divide", "distribute", "part", and "separate". 

πῶς (adv/conj) "How" is pos, which means "how", "how in the world", "how then", "in any way", "at all", "by any mean", "in a certain way,"and "I suppose."

σταθήσεται (verb 3rd sg fut ind pass) "Shall stand" is histemi, which means "to make to stand", "to stand", "to set up", "to bring to a standstill", "to check", "to appoint", "to establish", "to fix by agreement", "to be placed", "to be set", "to stand still", "to stand firm", "to set upright", "to erected", "to arise," and "to place." -

  βασιλεία (adj sg fem nom) "The kingdom" is from basileia, which means "kingdom", "dominion", "hereditary monarchy", "kingly office," (passive) "being ruled by a king," and "reign."It means that which is ruled by a specific person, a basileus, which means "leader", "prince", "commander," or "king." Basileia is not a synonym for a state, a country, or any social group of people. A basileia is defined by its control or ownership by the master and refers both to people and property under that control.

αὐτοῦ; ("adj sg masc gen ) His" is from autos, which means "the same," and the reflexive pronouns, "myself", "yourself", "himself", "herself", "itself," or the oblique case of the pronouns, "him", "her," and "it." It also means "one's true self," that is, "the soul" as opposed to the body and "of one's own accord."

ὅτι (adv/conj) "That" is hoti, which introduces a statement of fact "with regard to the fact that", "seeing that," and acts as a causal adverb meaning "for what", "because", "since," and "wherefore." --

λέγετε (verb 2nd pl imperf ind act) "Ye say" is lego, which means "to recount", "to tell over", "to say", "to speak", "to teach", "to mean", "boast of", "tell of", "recite," nominate," and "command." It has a secondary meaning "pick out," "choose for oneself", "pick up", "gather", "count," and "recount." A less common word that is spelled the same means "to lay", "to lay asleep" and "to lull asleep." --

ἐν (prep) "Through" is en, which means "in", "on", "at", "by", "among", "within", "surrounded by", "in one's hands", "in one's power," and "with". --

Βεεζεβοὺλ  (noun masc sg) "Beelzebub" is from the Greek Beelzeboul, which has no Greek meaning because it is from the Hebrew ba‘al zbûb, which means "Lord [of the] Flies" which is a mockery of the Hebrew ba‘al zbûl, "Lord Prince." Ba'al, of course, was Bone of the pagan gods mentioned often in the Old Testament, but the word means simple "Lord".

ἐκβάλλειν  (1st sg pres ind act) "Cast out" is from ekballo and means "throw out", "cast out of a place", "throw ashore", "drive out of", "banish", "expel", "publish", "strike out of", "let fall", "drop", "throw away", "cast aside", "reject, ""expose, ""go out", "depart", "divorce (a spouse)", "depose (a king)", "fell (trees)", "throw decisively (in wrestling)", "dig wells", "get rid of," in the passive, "to be ejected." Ek means "out of", "from," and "away from." Ballo is "to throw" or "to scatter."

με (noun sg masc acc) "I" is eme, which means "I", "me", and "my". 

τὰ δαιμόνια. (noun pl masc acc) "Devils" is from daimonion, which means "divinity", "divine power", "a lower divine being," and "evil spirit."

Related Verses: 

Front Page Date: 

Feb 17 2018