Matthew 26:52 Put up again your sword into its place:

Greek : 

Literal Verse: 

Return your sword into its place because all those getting the sword will destroy themselves along with the sword.

KJV : 

Mat 26:52 Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.

Interesting and Hidden Aspects: 

"Put up again" is a verb which means "to turn back", "to turn aside", and "to dissuade from." This is an uncommon word for Christ to use. Notice, Christ doesn't say "throw away" but "put back" in its place.

The term for sword specifically means a short sword, a weapon like a machete, since the Greek word used here is the source for the term. Christ seems to use "the sword" as a symbol for struggle, which is n necessary. Christ says explicitly that his larger purpose is not to bring peace but the sword in Mat 10:34. As a symbol of struggle, it is the opposite of the cup, which is the symbol of acceptance. Christ makes this contrast between cup and sword explicit in John 18:11.

The word translated as "place" means "region", "position", but it is also a metaphor for "opening", "occasion," and "opportunity."

The word translated as "for" introduces a reason or explanation. To prevent a run-on sentence, it can be translated as "this is why" or "this is because..." to start a new sentence.

The word translated as "all they" is the Greek adjective meaning "all", "the whole", "every," and similar ideas. When it is used as a noun, we would say "everything" or "everyone."

The word translated as "that take" primarily means "take." However, it also means "receive"and it usually translated that way in the Gospels. It works much like we use "get" to mean "receive." It also has many of the same uses "get" has in English. Among these are the ideas of "understanding" and "possessing." The word is in the form of an adjective, "getting," used as a noun, "the ones getting." Notice how this has the sense of both using, receiving, and understanding, which is very much the sense in Greek.

The word translated as "shall perish" means "to destroy" or "demolish". It is in the future tense but it is not passive ("will be destroyed"), as the KJV reads. It is a form where the subjects act on themselves, so "will destroy themselves." Note that this word does not mean "die" though it is translated that way in many modern translations. Christ speaks of death differently, as a destruction of soul or the bodies of those who have souls. This is the word Christ uses more broadly to describe the destruction of peoples and states.

The word translated as "with" also means "within", "in," or "among." Since the form of the word "sword" could be taken to mean an instrument by which something is done without the pronoun (unlike English), the use of the pronoun is specific, not meaning "by" or "with" as an instrument, but "with" in the sense of "together with" the sword.

Note: Did any of Christ's followers take up the sword? No, they did not start an armed rebellion, either against the Jewish leaders or Rome. But how did they die? All of his followers died by the sword in one form or another. They died at the hands of others exerting physical power over them. So, his followers didn't take up the sword and yet they physically died by the sword, but they were not destroyed. Their ideas, the realm of their ideas, was not destroyed. Their realm grew more and more powerful. Symbolically, the sword is physical power, but realms arise first from the power of ideas.

Also, note that Christ does not say "Throw away your sword." He said, "Put your sword in its place." Swords have a place and the physical struggle that they represent also has a place/ They are necessary as Christ says in Mat 24:6. However, acceptance also has its place. The secret is understanding the nature of the situation we are in and what must happen so we can satisfy what God expects from us.

Related Verses: 

Greek Vocabulary: 

Ἀπόστρεψον [uncommon](verb 2nd sg aor imperat act) "Put up again" is from apostrepho, which means "to turn back", "to turn aside", "to dissuade from", "to bring back," and "to recall."

τὴν μάχαιράν (noun sg fem acc) "Sword" is machaira, which means a "large knife", "large dagger", "short sword," or "dirk." It specifically the type of weapon used for making sacrifices, by assassins, bodyguards, and jugglers.

σου "Thy" is from sou which means "of you" and "your."

εἰς "Into" is from eis, which means "into (of place)," "up to (of time)", "until (of time)", "as much as (of measure or limit)", "as far as (of measure or limit)", "towards (to express relation)", "in regard to (to express relation)", "of an end or limit," and "for (of purpose or object)."

τὸν τόπον (noun sg masc acc) "Place" is from topos, which means "place", "region", "position", "part [of the body]", "district", "room," and "topic." It is also a metaphor for "opening", "occasion," and "opportunity."

αὐτῆς, (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."

πάντες "All they" is from pas, which means "all", "the whole", "every", "anyone", "all kinds," and "anything." In the adverbial form, it means "every way", "on every side", "in every way," and "altogether."

γὰρ (partic) "For" comes from gar which is the introduction of a clause explaining a reason or explanation: "for", "since," and "as." In an abrupt question, it means "why" and "what."

οἱ λαβόντες (part pl aor act masc nom) "That take" is from lambano means to "take", "take hold of", "grasp", "seize", "catch", "overtake", "find out", "detect", "take as", "take [food or drugs]", "understand", "take in hand", "undertake", "take in", "hold", "get", "receive [things]", "receive hospitably", "receive in marriage", "receive as produce", "profit", "admit", "initiate", "take hold of", "lay hold on", "seize and keep hold of", "obtain possession of", "lay hands upon", "find fault with", "censure," "to apprehend with the senses", "to take hold of," and "to seize." It is also specifically used to mean "seized with emotion."

μάχαιραν (noun sg fem acc ) "Sword" is machaira, which means a "large knife", "large dagger", "short sword," or " dirk ." It specifically the type of weapon used for making sacrifices, by assassins, bodyguards, and jugglers.

ἐν "In" is from en, which means "in", "on", "at", "by", "among", "within", "surrounded by", "in one's hands", "in one's power," and "with".

μαχαίρῃ (noun sg fem dat) "Sword" is machaira, which means a "large knife", "large dagger", "short sword," or " dirk ." It specifically the type of weapon used for making sacrifices, by assassins, bodyguards, and jugglers.

ἀπολοῦνται: (verb 3rd pl fut ind mid) "Shall perish" is from apollymi, which means "to demolish", "to lay waste", "to lose", "to perish", "to die", "to cease to exist," and "to be undone."

The Spoken Version: 

"Return your sword into its place," he said. "Because all the ones getting the sword are going to destroy themselves along with the sword. "

Front Page Date: 

Dec 3 2016