Why did Jesus tell his disciples to buy swords? Was he suggesting they be warriors like the ancient Israelites?

“But now,” he said, “take your money and a traveler’s bag. And if you don’t have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one! (Luke 22:36, NLT)

  • this is possibly the most challenging question for Peace Church Christians. all's i would ask is to consider what happens 15 verses later in Luke when one of the disciples (Peter) uses the sword on someone ostensibly there to harm Jesus. Commented Jul 9, 2014 at 23:07

1 Answer 1


In the following verse Jesus mentions another prophecy to be fulfilled.

For I say unto you, that this that is written must yet be accomplished in me, And he was reckoned among the transgressors: for the things concerning me have an end. - Luke 22:37

A transgressor is, by definition:

One who transgresses; one who breaks a law, or violates a command; one who violates any known rule or principle of rectitude; a sinner

Now here is where it becomes more a matter of opinion:

It is clear that, at least in our current day case, that interfering with the law is in fact a crime. Here we have two illustrations of that - first, the Apostles with Jesus are not yet saved since Jesus had not yet been crucified, so they were still sinners - and transgressors of the Law passed down by Moses from God. Second, they were interfering in Jesus' arrest and Peter attacked a guard. So that makes then transgressors of the law as by man.

So we see here a fulfillment of the prophecy Jesus mentioned in verse 37, as both spiritually and man-made sense the Apostles would be transgressors.

  • -1 the Apostles with Jesus are not yet saved -- this requires a source. We know thousands of people were saved before Christ's crucifixion.
    – Flimzy
    Commented Jul 10, 2014 at 0:13
  • @Flimzy Christ had not yet beared the sin for mankind. This means, as far as the Law of Moses, that the Apostles would have been sinners/ transgressors, and without Christ's sacrifice wouldn't have been forgiven. I have read nowhere in the Bible prior to Jesus' sacrifice that suggests people were saved beforehand.
    – Jesse
    Commented Jul 10, 2014 at 0:45
  • 1
    Everyone, saved or not, is a sinner/transgressor. We also know that many were saved prior to Christs' coming.
    – Flimzy
    Commented Jul 10, 2014 at 0:53
  • Right, but the "And he was reckoned among the transgressors" was something yet fulfilled, and was when his disciples attacked the ones coming to arrest him. Transgressors of the (manmade) law, and he was reckoned among them. Also, no - no one was saved prior to Jesus' coming - this defeats part of the purpose of His sacrifice. The prophets of the OT were not saved prior to Christ, they were saved because of their faith in God's promises, fulfilled in Christ. Even Abraham was down in Abraham's Bosom (the good side of Hades).
    – Jesse
    Commented Jul 10, 2014 at 1:01

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