(Bishop in the General Church of the New Jerusalem)

LONDON, 1945




Pastor of Michael Church, 1892-1938

Bishop in the General Church of the New Jerusalem, 1928-1942


PORTRAIT                                                        0
DEDICATION                                                        0
FOREWORD                                                        0
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH                                          0



THE PRIESTHOOD                                          2

THE NEW JERUSALEM AND THE OLD                            3

THE THREE WORDS                                          4




MAN'S TWO MEMORIES                                   6

TEMPTATION                                                 7


OF CITIZENSHIP                                          8


THE LORD                                                 9

THE ORIGIN OF LOVE TRULY CONJUGIAL                      10

SPEECH WITH SPIRITS                                    11


THE Members of Michael Church publish this volume of selected Addresses and Sermons by Bishop Robert James Tilson as a Memorial of their affectionate esteem, and as an appreciation of his forty-six-years Pastorate. It is hoped it may be of benefit to the whole Church to present in accessible and permanent form some of the doctrinal and expository studies of one who laboured so zealously and ably for the establishment of the New Church.

From the hundreds of manuscripts left by the Bishop an effort has been made to select those subjects which he especially emphasized as necessary for the distinctive development of the Church. The result will give some small indication of his particular contribution towards that end.

The encouragement and donations for this publication which have been received from the friends of Bishop Tilson in various parts of the world are gratefully acknowledged. A. W. A.


ROBERT JAMES TILSON was born at Tydd Gte, Lincolnshire, April 3rd, 1857. As a youth he worked in the drapery and general shop of his father--a man who delighted in reading the Bible, and who gladly received the Doctrines of the New Church when he heard of them through MR. RICHARD GUNTON.

In the year 1876 ROBERT TILSON left home for London, where he became an assistant in a drapery shop in the East End. The following year he moved to Brixton and was employed by MR. ISAAC GUNTON, a member of the Camberwell Society of the New Church. In MR. GUNTON'S home he met his future partner, MISS EDITH GUNTON, to whom he was married in 1881. In 1941 BISHOP AND MRS. TILSON had the unusual pleasure and rare distinction of celebrating their Diamond Wedding Anniversary.

The young man's real love was in working for the Church, and when opportunity offered he left the business world and entered the New Church College to study for the Ministry. One of the professors, DR. RUDOLPH L. TAFEL, who was in close touch with the newly formed Academy, made a deep impression upon his mind. On the completion of his course at the College in 1879, he was sent to the Liverpool Society. A noteworthy feature of his work there was the great interest he aroused in the study of the Doctrines, especially among the young people. In 1885 he was called to the Camberwell Society, where he was Pastor for six years.

At the meeting of the General Conference in August, 1890, he was severely attacked on account of his connection with the Academy, and because he was agent for New Church Life. Shortly afterwards he disassociated himself from the Conference, resigning his pastorate in the Camberwell Society on March 16, 1891. Fifty-nine members of the congregation left with him to form a "Particular Church of the Academy of the New Church." When the present Church building in Burton Road, Brixton, was opened on September 4, 1892, he and the REV. E. C. BOSTOCK jointly conducted the service, which was attended by a congregation of 154 persons.

Earlier in the year 1892 BISHOP TILSON had visited America, and on June 19, at Philadelphia, he was ordained into the Second Degree of the Priesthood at an Academy Service conducted by BISHOP BENADE. In 1897 he joined the newly formed General Church of the New Jerusalem, but only for a short time. In September, 1898, the Society at Burton Road was organized as an independent Society of the New Church, and some of the original members left to form a Society of the General Church.       

For over twenty years the Burton Road Society, which adopted the name of MICHAEL CHURCH, flourished as an independent Church under its Pastor, who was also Headmaster of its Academy School. In 1919, following a meeting with BISHOP N. D. PENDLETON in London, he came to the conclusion that this isolated position was no longer desirable, and together with his colleague, the REV. G. C. OTTLEY, he joined the General Church, and was received as a member of the clergy in that body. The following year the two Priests visited the General Church Societies in the United States and Canada, and attended the meetings of the Council of the Clergy in Bryn Athyn, U.S.A.

In 1928, at the General Assembly held in London, BISHOP TILSON was ordained into the Third Degree of the Priesthood, BISHOP N. D. PENDLETON officiating.

Ten years later he came to the conclusion that it would be for the good of the Society to give up his active leadership, because of his advancing age, and on June 17, 1938, at a Special Service, he inducted his Assistant, the REV. A. WYNNE ACTON, to succeed him as Pastor. This concluded a single pastorate of forty-six years, and active work in the Priesthood for fifty-nine years. When he resigned there were a few members of the Society, to whom he had been Pastor continuously for fifty-nine years. In the course of his career he baptized over 480 adults and children.

BISHOP AND MRS. TILSON continued to reside near the Church, and regularly to attend and support all its activities. He occasionally preached, and took part in special celebrations. His last official act, on March 1, 1942, was the Ordination of the REV. MARTIN PRYKE into the Second Degree of the Priesthood. This was the fourth Ordination at which he had officiated.

Following a sudden attack of pneumonia on May 11th, 1942, he passed into the spiritual world on May 14th. At the Memorial Service which was held at Michael Church on Sunday, May 24th, the Pastor paid the following tribute to his work:

"To him was given more than the usual amount of external gifts, but he was a faithful servant in that he turned them all to the better performance of his use--to the furtherance of the Lord's work in building the Church. He showed his true humility by constantly seeking to know from the Lord in His Word how he was to accomplish his chosen work. As we look back upon that work, his outstanding contribution to the Church seems to have been to establish the Doctrine of the Divine Authority of the Writings--that the Heavenly Doctrine is the very Word of the Lord to His New Church. Together with this, he constantly worked for the establishment of a true order in the Church, beginning with the Priesthood. He had no use for those who did not seek and develop the new Doctrines of the Church, which to him were so many jewels in the King's Crown, and he strongly opposed any attempt to modify these truths or to commingle them with man-made accommodations. He ever insisted on looking to the pure truth as the Lord had revealed it to His Church, and he worked for the establishment of the Church upon that teaching as the only sure foundation." A. W. ACTON.



(An extemporaneous Address delivered at the Public Session of the Council of the Clergy, Bryn Athyn, Pa., June 23, 1920.)

THIS subject has been chosen in the spirit of "lest we forget," and simply that. I do not forget that others have dealt with this great theme in a way far exceeding that in which I can hope to deal with it. The Bishop Emeritus gave us a classic when his address on the "Principles of the Academy" was published in the New Church Life, and afterwards in pamphlet form, in 1899,--a declaration which has been of the greatest use to many of us, in enabling us to place before those who have inquired what the Academy really is, a statement to which we could give our heartfelt consent.

Neither do I forget, nor can I ever forget, the inspiring address which it was our privilege to listen to last night, which led me to ask myself the question, What can I say to-morrow that can add anything whatever to such an address, and what is there left for me to say on such an occasion? However, we need to be reminded from time to time of the basic principles of our faith; and since, as the Bishop has told you, it was my privilege to be one of the earliest members of the Academy of the New Church in England, and, with one exception, I am now the oldest member of the Academy in England, I need make no apology for addressing you on such a subject as the "Academy Fundamentals."

The great use of our coming together here is to know each other, and to learn to know, to love, to remember, and to enter intellectually into the sacred mysteries of our faith. Firstly, then, what is the fundamental principle of our faith as members of the Academy, in the broadest use of that term? The answer can only be that it is an unequivocal and unhesitating acknowledgment that the Theological Writings of Emanuel Swedenborg are the very Word of God to His New Church end to the world. This cardinal fact was recognized in the very earliest days of the Church, and, in the Lord's mercy, was as seed sown to bear fruit.

In the journal called the Aurora, for June, 1799, the REV. FRANCIS LEICESTER declared that the Writings were "The Word Itself in the interior sense." In 1800, that venerable and diligent worker in the Lord's New Church, the REV. JOSEPH PROUD, the sweet singer in England who gave to the Church some hundreds of beautiful hymns, said: "Be assured that the Arcana Coelestia and the Apocalypse Revealed are no less or other than the Lord's Own Holy Word." In 1880, we find the great Founder of the Academy, FATHER BENADE saying: "We must know and ever bear in mind the use given us to maintain the infallibility of the Writings, that there is only one Word, and that the Writings are the internal sense of that Word."

As we pass down the history of the Church, we find that this early recognized fact, that the Writings are none other than the Word, assumed another outward garb of expression; namely, that they are of Divine authority. In that classic work, Authority in the New Church, written by my beloved professor, DR. RUDOLPH TAFEL, he used the term throughout; and in his day and generation the recognition of the Divine authority of the Writings assumed that outward expression--the "acknowledgment of the Divine Authority of the Writings." In these later days, the phrase has returned once more and is being maintained in your midst, and also, thank God, in old England, the unequivocal assertion that the Writings are the Word of God.

What other position can you give to them in the light of what the human instrument of the Lord's Second Coming wrote in that little sketch, entitled An Ecclesiastical History: "The books are to be enumerated which have been written by the Lord through one, from the beginning to the present day?" And in the light of what he wrote to the Royal Librarian in Stockholm in 1765: "When I think of what I am about to write, and while I am in the act of writing, I enjoy a perfect inspiration, for otherwise it would be my own; but now I know for certain that what I write is the living truth of God." To that we add the evidence of the Writings themselves, so conveniently placed before us in that latest publication of the Book Room as a re-issue,--The Testimony of the Writings concerning themselves. That pamphlet breathes the spirit of fairness and justice, because, at the end, in parallel columns, are placed the ideas of each school of thought; and every man and woman is left free to make his own choice.

The Writings are the Word of the Load on a higher and more interior plane than the letter of the Word. Can you imagine the Divine giving or creating anything without a soul? And as the Lord has given us the Writings, has He given us a body, and not a soul within that body? The Divine Truth is given in degrees; each higher degree is within the lower, and each degree is Divine. Therefore, in the Writings you have an internal sense, within which is the celestial sense, and within that the Divine sense--the Lord in His fullness and almighty power.

But the denial of the Divinity of the Writings, whence comes it? I would ask you to realize that the spirit within that denial--the denial that the Writings are any other than the Word of God,--is but the old Arian heresy of the former Christian Church now held by the Unitarians, who find so much of beauty in the man Jesus, but who deny that He is God incarnate. So there are those who believe that the Writings are a good "commentary" on the Word, an indirect revelation rather than direct; for they are infested by the spirits who gave birth to the Arian heresy.

I would that I could inspire every young man and woman before me to-night to make it one solemn duty of their lives to read the early journals of the Church, beginning with that first serial of the Academy, Words for the New Church, which must ever be a classic in our midst; and then, that magazine which is still a great power in the New Church. New-Church Life; in England, The New-Church Monthly and the New-Church Standard; and in Canada, the Tidings. These should be studied by our young men and women, that they may know something of the spirit which started the Academy.

Now, a new and distinct Revelation demands a really new and distinct Church. In the recent Convention, as reported in the last issue of New-Church Messenger, we find one minister stating that the "Convention has ceased to represent anything distinctively New Church, and its condition is hopeless." Further, he says: "Make our secular and theological schools, wherein is the promise of the most efficient New-Church women, men, and clergymen, fundamentally, avowedly, thoroughly, openly, distinctively, really New Church from the Kindergarten to the finishing of University training." There is something hidden behind this multitude of words. It was not, (as I hope to show you soon), it was not the Academy spirit.       It was a dim recognition of a disorder, of a weakness, a hopelessness. It was not the inspiration of that spirit which knows that the Academy was founded upon the Divine Truth, and, to use the expression of one of its original founders, that "it will go thundering down the ages as the Lord's true Church upon earth."

Another minister at the recent Convention said: "In trying to get in touch with the world, we have been losing touch with the kingdom of heaven." Now this is an expression of one of our brethren of the Convention Church, and it was given in the midst of those who refuse to take the Lord's own declaration concerning the state of the Christian world. As in the early days of the Church, our forefathers saw that the first thing was to place before their hearers a true statement of the state of the Christian world, so, to-day, in a more interior sense than then, is it necessary for us to remember this great fact. We must take the Lord's own statement concerning the state of the Christian world. We must not judge of its states from friends who are outside of the New Church, nor even from the civil liberty, the polity of nations. The Lord sags that "the quality of the Lord's Church in the countries of the earth cannot be seen by any man so long as he lives in the world." (L. J. 41.) And of that which we cannot see rightly, we should forbear to conclude from our own knowledge; but the Lord has revealed in Arcana Coelestia (1886--Pref.) that "those who come
into the other life from the Christian world are the worst of all." And in the Spiritual Diary (5978) He tells us that the "Christians at this day are worse than the Jews were." Nor has that condition improved since Swedenborg's time. The old Christian Church goes down, down, down to its utter consummation, and we are living, let us hope, in the last period of that Church.

Again it is written: "The Lord, and the Divine Truth which is from Him, are less received and loved in heart within the Church than out of it." (A. C. 9198.) The angels, we are told, have little hope of the Christian world. It must be in a bad way, therefore, if the angels have little hope of it; for they make the best of every man. But the angels have little hope of the Christian world, and therefore we need have little pity for it. Again we remind ourselves that we speak of principles and not of persons. But we should remember that the sphere of that Christian world is ever actively, seductively, and insidiously with us. We breathe its atmosphere. And only in the kingdom of God, which is implanted in Remains, and in the things which we receive from the New Church, is our salvation to be attained.

This sphere of the vastated Church invades the New. We find it in the exchange of pulpits by those who have written, and written splendidly, upon the utter distinctiveness of the New Church. We find they can preach from the pulpit of the Old, and have the clergy of the Old in the pulpit of the New. Yet a minister at the recent Convention said: "The New Church is not a Protestant body, and therefore should not merge its identity in whole or in part with them." The Word of the Lord says: "Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins." (Apoc. xviii. 4.) We are in the world, but there is no reason why we should be of it. We are in the Old Church spheres, but there is no reason why we should not pray to be kept from the spirit of that Church.

As a third fundamental of the Academy, we come to the question of the priesthood. I would ask, What were the things the great founders of the Academy stood for more than any other? Although the majority of them have passed to the other side, there to help us more powerfully than if here, I would say that their great work was to make the priesthood free, or rather, to establish it free as an organization; and next, that their work was to make prominent in the minds of the members of the Church the doctrine of conjugial love, and, as an outcome of that, the necessity for New-Church education.

Now, if we look at it from the Academy standpoint, the organization of the New Church outside of the Academy denies the doctrine of the priesthood. What other judgment can you pass when you remember how some of us entered upon our priestly work? For forty years I have rendered my report as a New-Church pastor but it is only thirty-eight years since I was ordained; for it was decreed by the Conference that I should work two of the hardest years of my life without ordination, or until the Society to which I ministered should approve and then they would ordain me. Thus they would have the priesthood ascend from men. The Academy says the priesthood descends from God out of heaven as the first of the Church, that it comes down from the Divine.

They have "ministers" in Conference and Convention. We have priests. Do not forget it. Do not be afraid of the only honest translation of the word "sacerdos." You can only make it "priest," and because the Roman Church has abused it is no reason why we should not use it.

As was so splendidly shown last night, in a way that should put new spirit into the doctrine of the priesthood, their work is on the plane of conscience; their work is of spiritual use, their spiritual affection for the truth. They leave you free to ultimate in your conduct what you wish; that is your business, not theirs; but theirs is to see that the Divine is among the people, that they give you from God's Holy Word those principles which come from heaven, and come to you through them with the power of, "Thus saith the Lord." The priesthood is not man's office; it is the Lord's office adjoined to the man. Humility and reverence are ever needed by the priest in the exercise of his holy office. As little as he possibly can should he call attention to himself in his holy administrations, by any peculiarities which separate him from other men. When in the sacred office, he must speak not as the servant of men but as the servant of the living God; and he should at all times bear himself, even to the externals of dress and demeanour, as one to whom that holy office is adjoined.

Another Academy fundamental is that which is allied with and the outcome of conjugial love. Oh what a duty has been thrust upon the Academy to maintain this! Unspeakable things have grown up in England and here. In your ex-President Theodore Roosevelt you had one who condemned what is the curse of England to-day, namely, race suicide. The only thing that will kill that in the end is the Academy fundamental concerning conjugial love. Let us study that book, therefore, and as an outcome let us keep alive the old Academy fundamental that marriage with those outside the Church is heinous in the sight of heaven. The problem is a large one, but the truth must be held before our young men and young women. If you want all that conjugial love can bring to you, then you must think alike in religious matters, for conjugial love goes hand in hand with man's religion in his life.

But another matter which grew up in my conversations with Father Benade and the early members of the Church is this, that conjugial love calls upon every man to recognize and fulfil the duties and affairs of his home. Every husband has a duty to his wife and family. Of course, you say: "There are some who are so busy in the work of the Church that they cannot find time for recreation with their wife and children." But everything that urges a man to do so much work that he cannot do his home work is the outcome of that man's conceit. It was said by a certain man that he worked so hard for the Church that he had no time to read the Writings! And the meeting applauded him. Twenty-eight years ago, a friend of mine made a statement to me in Chicago. When he invited me to spend the evening with him, he said: "To-morrow evening I visit with my wife." I asked him what he meant by that, and he told me it was his weekly custom to spend one evening with the good wife at home that they might think and talk of the doctrines of the Church. We must recognize the claim of the wife and family to a reasonable amount of attention in time, recreation, and instruction.

The question of New-Church Education comes up, of course, as an Academy fundamental. Again I would remind you and myself of one or two fundamental ideas concerning it; and first of all this, the absolute necessity for loyal and whole-hearted co-operation on the part of parents with priests and teachers. To do that, you must begin at the beginning by remembering one of FATHER BENADE'S statements: "Do not anticipate states with your children." In England, we are coming to this position, that we have babies for about three months of their lives; then they become girls or boys, as the case may be; and soon they are like young men and women. Keep your children young as long as you can. Help them to shun self-consciousness. Teach them the old lesson that children are made to be seen and not heard--too much; avoid putting them in competition with other children, which only causes them to have around them spirits of jealousy, envy, etc., which will destroy their sense of honour if it be persisted in. Keep them as long as you can sweet and innocent, trusting in their parents, and respectful to all men.

The work of New-Church Evangelization is another Academy fundamental. In the Divine Providence of the Lord, you have been called recently to what promises to be one of the most glorious things to which men have ever set their hand faithfully to do. I refer to the work now going on in South Africa, to our beloved brethren there, REV. R. W. BROWN, REV. F. E. GYLLENHAAL, and REV. T. PITCAIRN. Our prayers must go out daily that their hands may be strengthened in that great work. Think of it. The Lord has revealed that the Church will be established among the Gentiles. It was thought by some that this would be with Japan and China. That may come yet; but there is a brighter promise in Africa. You have sent out men to commence the work there by beginning with the little ones. There is your hope, on the Dark Continent as well as here; and the Lord has shown us that "the harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few." (Matth. ix. 7.) You must help them by your financial aid, by your whole-hearted sympathy; and "pray ye the Lord of the harvest, that He will send forth labourers into His harvest." (Matth. ix. 38.)

And now let me refer to the Academy Spirit, which lies within and at the back of the Academy fundamentals.

Brethren; after all, that which is essential is the spirit of a thing. The Bishop Emeritus wrote: "What makes the Church is not so much its doctrines as its spirit." You have it all in a nutshell when you say that it is the Spirit of the Lord, and that alone, which makes the Church. The Lord promised that "when He, the Spirit of Truth, is come, He will guide you into all Truth." (John xvi. 13.) The Spirit of the Lord has come. He has made His Second Advent in the Writings of the New Church. The Lord has come, the Spirit of Truth is here in the Writings of the Church. We acknowledge their spirit; and, guided by their teaching, we shall "enter into all truth."

And here I come to what I would call the "perceptive" of the Academy. In the Academy there is the perceptive, and not merely the intellectual. Unless we get the soul of the Academy, we shall go under in our battle. You ask me: How shall I get the Academy spirit? I answer: Get it as those got it who have imparted so much of it to us. Study the Writings, read them daily, listen affirmatively to the teachings of your priests and pastors. Meditate, reflect, live. And as you do that, help will come from those we have loved and not lost, as they have only gone before. They will imbue us with the spirit of the Academy, and that has in it charity and freedom. In all the churches of the past, charity was the fundamental but real genuine charity, not the mock charity of sickly sentimentalism.

The Divine definition of charity is, that "according to the quality and quantity of truths, so is charity with men." (A. C. 21892.) "Charity is the affection of being of use to others without any end of recompense." (A. C. 34195.) Of use to others! Use is a Divine ultimate, the golden tie of all real co-operation. The angels see a man but they think of a use. Use called you mighty cathedral into being, according to the Divinely revealed law: "Use existed before the organic forms of the body came into existence; the use produced and adapted them to itself, and not contrariwise." (A. C. 4223.) The world to-day believes that the forms of life produce life. Too often the New Church has provided forms before it established uses; places of worship, put up, but no priest to officiate therein. Not so with the Academy spirit and those imbued by it. Often have you begun in the home, and gone from there to the temple; but you have gone with the priest.

As to freedom, it is to act according to the truth--to acknowledge its laws, to obey its precepts. A man must be free to do wrong, or he can never freely do that which is right. For ever it is true that "he is the free man whom the Truth makes free, and all are slaves beside."

In conclusion, my colleague and I can say: "Lord, it is good for us to be here" (Matth. xviii. 4)--to be here, to be strengthened in the Academy spirit. We have never been apart from you in basic idea and thought. Externally, we have stood aside for twenty years. Would that you had sent for us earlier, or would that we had come; but this is of the Divine Providence. We have come, and let us swear that by the help of heaven we will stand squarely and sincerely with you. We are here through the works of others; for others have laboured. You remember them with all affection. They have laboured, and you have entered into their labours. To them heaven has said: "Well done"! To you heaven says: "Go thou and do likewise."

It may be I am singing my swan song; let that song first and foremost be the Hebrew phrase: "Barook Yehowah"--"Blessed be the Lord." And with it: "Our own Academy, we pledge our faith to thee, and o'er and o'er and ever more, our love, our loyalty!"

Fundamentals are to be sacredly kept, and they will increasingly yield a hundredfold as the Academy goes "thundering down the ages"; for remember, the Academy is doing work not merely for to-day, but for all eternity. It works from the spiritual affection of truth in a Church which is universal,--the crown of all the Churches which have existed hitherto in the earth. In the Lord's New Church are the celestial, the spiritual, and the natural (A. C. 3653), the "called," the "chosen," and the "faithful" (A. E. 1074).

Its inmost and crown is trust in the Lord and absolute loyalty to His truth, under His guidance. Therefore, let us be true to Him, true to each other, true to ourselves, and then not all the hells can prevent the ultimate triumph of the truth, and the complete establishment of His Church.

"Hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown."




(Address to the Theological-Philosophical Society, London, 1923.)

IT is revealed by the Lord in the Heavenly Doctrines of the New Jerusalem that "The representation of the Priesthood is, in the supreme sense, every office which the Lord performs as the Saviour; and whatever He performs as the Saviour is from the Divine Love, thus from the Divine Good, for all good belongs to love hence also by the Priesthood, in the supreme sense, is signified the Divine Good of the Divine Love of the Lord." (A. C. 9809.)

In the light of this teaching of the spiritual sense of the Word, then, the subject which we are to consider this evening is one of the utmost importance; and if anything further from the Heavenly Doctrines was needed to impress our minds with this fact, it would surely be found in the statement of the Arcana Coelestia, wherein it is written, "There are two things which are predicated of the Lord, namely, that He is King, and that He is Priest. The Lord as King governs all things in general and particular in the universe from Divine Truth, and, as Priest from Divine Good." (A. C. 1728.)

Thus, in dealing with the Priesthood we are dealing with the representative of the Lord in His Inmost Divine, with the representative of the Lord in "the very essential of order, all things of which are of mercy " (A. C. 1728); and, therefore it is stated in the latest revelation from heaven that "THE PRIESTHOOD IS THE FIRST OF THE CHURCH." (A. E. 229.)

This direct quotation from the Writings is from the Apocalypse Explained; and it is significant to find in the same paragraph the statement that "Charity itself is actually the first of the Church, because this makes the Church with man." Therefore the Priesthood and charity are one, for they are each and both the "First of the Church," for charity, and in the supreme sense Divine Charity, is the internal of the Priesthood, and its external is the office which is adjoined to men. This doubtless is why in the Arcana, where the teaching concerning Ecclesiastical Government is given, it is given under the heading of "The Doctrine of Charity and Faith." (A. C. 10789.)

It may be useful to point out at the very beginning of our study that the only permissible word to use in connection with this First of the Church, is that of "Priesthood." In both chapters where this subject is dealt with in the Writings, viz., both in the Arcana and in the Heavenly Doctrine, the only term used to designate the Office we are now considering is the Latin "Sacerdotium," which admits of no other rightful translation than that of "Priesthood"; and those to whom this office is adjoined are spoken of as "Sacerdotes," and this again only be properly translated by the term "Priest." True it is that in the Writings the terms "Minister" and "Ministerium" occur; and these terms must be translated Minister and Ministry; but they never once occur in the chapters already referred to; and in reference to Ecclesiastical matters they are used only one-third as frequently as are the terms Sacerdotes and Sacerdotium.

From a careful study of these terms, as used in the Writings, one accepts the statement made by the late REV. SAMUEL WARREN, in the New Jerusalem Messenger, as follows:

"Regarded as to the office they fill, they are 'Priests,' as to the uses they perform, they are 'Ministers.'" (See "Priesthood" by G. C. OTTLEY, p. 25.)

It is the office--that office which is a, representative of the Lord in all that He does from Divine Love,--with which we are now concerned, and that office is the PRIESTHOOD. Nor need any sane man be afraid of using the term because those who have borne it in the dead Church of Roman Catholicism have abused all that was meant by it. One bad shilling is no proof that all the mint is wrong; and, then, it should be remembered that words, clothes, rituals, and all external things are not the property of any Church, but may be used, as is deemed fitting, to express or represent any Truth revealed from heaven.

We therefore can use only the term Priesthood, for that is the only English equivalent of the term used in the Heavenly Doctrines by the revealing of which the Lord has made His Second Advent.

Then, too, whilst thus on the externals of our theme, we would notice, in passing, the superficial objection which is sometimes urged against the Doctrine of the Priesthood, that all that is said about it in the Writings applied to the Jewish Dispensation, but is out of place at the present time. This ghost of man's imagining may be laid low by the very words of the Arcana wherein it is revealed that "From the representatives which exist at the present day (it may appear) that all Priests, whosoever and of whatsoever quality they are, by virtue of the priestly office represent the Lord." (A. C. 3670.)

Moreover, it should be most carefully noted by every student of the Writings that in the New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine it is distinctly said of the Doctrine contained in that Book, and thus of the Chapter at the end on "Ecclesiastical and Civil Government," that it is expressly for the New Church, and that it was revealed out of heaven. (H. D. 7.) Surely nothing can possibly be stronger than this.

Therefore with confidence we pass to the more interior consideration of the theme before us.

"The Priesthood is the first of the Church." Then, according to the law that "the first is the all in the things produced and derived" (A. C. 9568) we shall expect to find that the Priesthood is the supreme in all things which go to the establishment of the Church as the Lord's Kingdom upon earth. Of the New Jerusalem, as representing the Church, it is said that it descended out of heaven from God. That Holy City is "The Doctrine of Divine Truth" (H. D. 6), and all organizations on earth which are formed for the establishment of the Church must be the creations--the outcome--of that Doctrine, which was revealed out of heaven, to the Lord's Servant, EMANUEL SWEDENBORG (H. D. 7).

In so far as any organization of the Church is not in harmony with that "Doctrine of Divine Truth," in the same measure it is false to its professions, places itself outside the stream of Divine Order, and removes itself from the Divine. It is written: "When the Lord is present, then all things are arranged into order by His presence. The Lord is Order itself; therefore where He is present, there is order, and where order is, there He is present." (A. C. 5703.)

Let it be repeated that all organizations, forms, and communities formed for establishment of the Church among men, to be really living must be creations of--ultimations ofthe Doctrine of Divine Truth which is and therefore makes the Church. Now, the law of creation is thus revealed "All Divine Influx is from firsts into ultimates and by ultimates into mediates, and thus the Lord connects together all things of creation, wherefore He is called the FIRST and the LAST.... It is similar with every Divine operation." (Div. Wis. VIII 3.)

The establishment of the Church is a "Divine Operation" for the Church is the Lord's, and not man's, and therefore His Divine Influx can come into the creation of the Church, as an ultimate effect upon earth, only in accordance with that order, which works through firsts into ultimates. "The Priesthood is the first of the Church," hence it follows that the Church must be established through the Priesthood. Like it as little as man may, that is the "Doctrine of Divine Truth," and that is the Church, which is from the Lord, and is His Kingdom among men.

Because of this, it is revealed concerning the commonwealth or community, that "Those who are in Ministerial offices (Ministeriis) provide that the Divine shall be there"; and, in the preceding paragraph, it is stated that "By Ministeries are understood Priestly offices and their duties." (Char. 134.) Hence, through all the Churches of the Dive Dispensations it is found that the Priesthood has been the centre of each Church, and the head and first thereof.

This was also the case in the earliest days of the organization of the Lord's New Church--in the golden days of ROBERT HINDMARSH and his immediate successors. The great work of that first Priest of the Lord's New Church, The Rise and Progress of the New Jerusalem, bears eloquent testimony to that fact. Since his day forceful and learned presentations of the great truths revealed by the Lord calling, with unmistakable voice for this order in the Church, have been made from time to time by such faithful and clear-seeing Priests as RICHARD DE CHARMS in his monumental work A Report on the Trine to the Central Convention of America in 1848; by the REV. W. H. BENADE in his classic A Report on the Priesthood, and on Grades in the Priesthood to the 55th Annual Convention of America in 1875; by the late REV. R. L. TAFEL in his Presidential Report to the English Conference in 1873; by the REV. THOS. CHILD in most powerful, albeit more superficially treated articles, in Morning Light for 1881; and also by my late beloved colleague the REV. G. C. OTTLEY in The Priesthood in the New Church, published in 1914. Nor should there he, in this connection, the omission of the masterly summing up of a discussion the Priesthood which was given by the learned Editor of The New-Church Quarterly in that Magazine for April, 1913.

All these, and others, have borne splendid testimony to the truth as revealed, and have made forceful presentations of the great and abiding fact that "The Priesthood is the first of the Church." The Lord has never left Himself without witnesses to the truth as given by Him for the proper establishment of His Church; and He has used these instruments, not because He needed them for His sake, but rather because they needed the work, and the outward organization of the Church upon earth needed their faithful services. "Other men have laboured, and ye are entered into their labours." (John iv. 38.) In all the presentations made by these faithful Priests, their one appeal has, of course, been to the Writings of the Church, as the final, because Divine, authority. These servants of the Lord, in the highest office known to men, have contended, each in his own way, that according to the Law of the Church as given in the Heavenly Doctrines, the following propositions should be affirmatively received:

First: That Priests represent the Lord; not by any personal virtue or claim, but by the office adjoined to them, the duties of which form their distinctive USE in life.

Second: That Priests should be the heads of the Churches or Societies to which they minister, and should be given to the full the position which this fact demands.

Third: That Priests should be in due order and subordination, recognizing the trinal order of the Priesthood as taught in Coronis 17 and elsewhere.

Fourth: That Priests should be properly inducted into the Holy Office by solemn consecration, and by the laying on of hands, which is referred to in the Canons of the New Church as "the representation of the transfer of the Holy Spirit." (Holy Spirit IV. 7. See also D. L. W. 220, A. C. 878.)

Fifth: That none but Priests should be allowed to take charge of a Society, or preach.

In support of these propositions, the following, among many other passages from the Writings of the Church, may be quoted:

A. C. 1361. "The priestly office itself is representative."

A. C. 3670. "The same may appear from the representations which exist even at this day."

A. C. 10789-10806 and H. D. 311-325. "Governors over things Ecclesiastical or the things of heaven with man, are called Priests, and their office the Priesthood." "Priests are persons in authority for administering those things which belong to Divine Law and Worship."

H. D. 313. "Order should also be among those in authority; lest any one, from favour or ignorance, should permit evils which are in opposition to order ... which is guarded against when those in authority are higher and lower, and when there is subordination among them."

Coronis 17. "In order that anything may be perfect there must be a trine in just order, one under another, and a communication between, and that this trine must form a one in like manner in the Church, there must be a Mitred Prelate, Parish Priests, and Curates under them." (Primus infulatus, antistites parochi, et flamines sub illis.)

Canons "Holy Spirit" IV. 7. "A Clergyman (Clericus) because he is to teach Doctrine from the Word concerning the Lord, and concerning redemption and salvation from Him, is to be inaugurated by the promise of the Holy Spirit, and by the representation of its transfer."

H. H. 226. "All preachers (in heaven) are appointed by the Lord, and thence are in the gift of preaching; no others are allowed to teach in the temples."

A. C. 6822. (Under the head of "The Doctrine of Charity,") "Good may be insinuated into another by anyone in the country, but not truth except by those who are teaching Ministers; if others do so heresies exist, and the Church is disturbed and torn to pieces."

These passages cover, in general, all the five points which have just been advanced; and this, we submit, is the teaching of the Church. For all this is part and parcel of that Doctrine of Divine Truth, which is the Holy City, New Jerusalem, which has descended from God out of heaven. In these passages, and they could be greatly multiplied, we claim that we have Divine authority for stating that "The Priesthood is the First of the Church," and that therein is given the teaching from heaven concerning its Authority, Order, and Governance.

But, the very mention of these things, brings to the mind of every careful student of the history of the New Church as an outward organization in the past, and to the mind of every careful and observant student of the present condition of the Church on earth as an outward organization, the sad fact that the teachings of Divine Revelation, so faithfully proclaimed by those already mentioned, have fallen very largely upon ears which are deaf, and have not been permitted to materialize, save in a very small degree, because of the prejudices and conceits of men.

It is a sad fact that from the very beginning of the Church, as an outward organization the office of the Priesthood has been the object of assault by the hells through men; and one makes bold to say that to-day one of the greatest needs of the Church is the proper recognition of the office and use of the Priesthood in relation to the establishment of the Church. Blinded by prejudice, bound by old notions from association with forms of the dead and consummated Church, and cabined, cribbed, men and women have brought with them into the heterogeneous folds of the so-called New Church, that which has made to a great extent a dead letter of the opened Word as to its teaching concerning the Priesthood appointed by the Lord as His representative among men.

In witness whereof listen to the testimony of those who knew and have had the courage to speak: In 1881 the REV. THOS. CHILD wrote in Morning Light as follows, under the heading of The Relations of Ministers to the organization of the Church. "What are we? would be a question somewhat difficult to answer if asked in regard to the form of our Church government. General government we have none, and the local is nondescript.... The Ministers of the New Church integrant, incorporated part of the Church's organization in the Societies to which they belong, but from that organization they stand excluded.... The spirit of the Church is not right in regard to the Ministerial position and function.... The contrast between this beginning and that of the First Christian Church is striking and instructive. The external organization of that Church began from the Lord Himself, and was constituted among His Apostles by His own direct appointment. They were the Church in its first external form, though not the whole Church, as the Roman Catholics allege.... But the prime fact here is that from the Lord the commission came, and through His Apostles to the members of the Church. The members of the Church did not govern the Apostles, but the Apostles guided and directed them. From the Lord, then, through His appointed teachers and guides, and thence to the general body of His Church, ran the sequence of the Divine Commission; and in this descent we have an orderly and seemly gradation.... In the New Church all this is changed; that order is reversed, and the only one acknowledged in practice is from without inwards, i.e. to say, disorder reigns and is accepted for the order of the Lord. The Minister no longer holds his commission from the Master (so says our practice) but from the Church, through its committee."

Mr. Child continues, "The Minister of JESUS CHRIST holds his commission from Him, and from no man, and therefore, in the Lord's Church has the right of the Minister's place, i.e. as the representative of the Lord in the Society as well as in the general Church; and as there is nothing for the welfare of the Church in which the Lord is not concerned, there is nothing in which His Minister, as His representative, is not concerned, not for his own sake, and from himself, but for the Lord's sake, and from Him."

Recognizing to the full the proper part the laymen of the Church should take in the affairs of the Society, Mr. Child continues, in words that burn:

"Put the Minister at their head. Let him be, as by virtue of his office he should be, president of the whole Society, and of every several part of the organization composing it--from the meetings of the committee, of Sunday School Teachers, and of the quarterly, general, and special meetings of the Church, to the various more or less external agencies and endeavours connected with the conducting and working of the Society. By the law of the Church he is head of the Society; then, all I say is, let him be the head of the Society; join whom you will with him, and under him, towards the efficient conduct of the whole, but let that place which is inwardly seen, and half acknowledged to be his, be his outwardly and in reality." This intrepid teacher of the Church concludes his articles with the following eloquent and telling words: "More than all do we wish to see the consciousness and acknowledgement of the Minister's true place as the Lord's servant vividly present in the altered and ennobled thought, feeling and spirit of the Church in regard to him." (Morning Light, 1881, pp. 341, 348, 358.)

It is not necessary to add much, surely, to this awful indictment, by one who knew and had suffered in the cause of the Church. We will be content with the statement that the President of the Conference in 1888, as reported in the Appendix to the Minutes, laid bare the position in that body in terms similar to those already quoted, and also that one of the leading Ministers of the Church in the New-Church Quarterly wrote of the system in vogue in this country that it virtually was " That the members or the people, are the Church, and that, of irrefragable consequence, it is they and they alone, who have the right to say what shall be done in it." (Quoted on p. 10 of G. C. OTTLEY'S Priesthood.)

Truly a sphere of sadness comes as one reads or quotes such testimony as that now given. He would be a bold man indeed who would say that that which was written so long ago is not mainly true to-day. Not so long ago we heard of a Minister who had to ask his congregation, in business meeting assembled, for permission to read a lesson from the Writings in the services of the Church, and was refused. Again, about the same time, we were informed that another Minister expressed the desire that he should not be expected to read a lesson from the Writings as part of the Service; and the meeting of the members decided that it should so be done. Wherein came the governing power of the one set over the Society as the representative of the Lord?

In the work on the Divine Providence it is stated: "If any king were to allow his subjects to govern all things of his kingdom, he would no longer be a king but would only be called so; thus he would have the dignity of a name only, and not of any reality. Government cannot be predicated of such a king." (D. P. 201.) This being so of a king, what of a Priest? Answer, "So-called."

But turning from the lamentable facts of what has been, and still largely is, to what should be according to that "Doctrine of Divine Truth" which is the Holy City New Jerusalem, we find that the Priesthood is the first of the Church, and therefore that every Priest does represent the Lord and that everything possible should be done in the outward organizations to make the Priest feel and realize the sanctity of the office adjoined to him. It is written: "Dignity and honour ought to be accorded to the Priests on account of the holy things which they administer." (H. D. 317.)

As a practical application of this, speaking from long extended experience, I plead for the adoption of the Voluntary Offertory as the means of providing the income of those who minister in the Priestly office. It is essential for the freedom of the Priest that he should feel a deep sense of his complete reliance upon the Lord, and not upon men. Remove from him as far as possible any suggestion that he is the paid servant of the Society to which he ministers, an idea worthy only of those who trample under foot the pearls of wisdom revealed by the Lord in His opened Word.

Let the laity remove from their minds that stupid bogy of Priestcraft, which can abide only in the prejudices and bedarkened imaginations of those who urge its danger. The days of priestcraft, thank God, are past; freedom from that was among the first fruits of the Reformation, and the resultant freedom to read the Word for oneself. A far greater danger now confronts the Church, and has been cruelly felt in the outward organization of the New Church, viz., "Laycraft," which comes from as deep a hell as ever gave birth to the soul-destroying efforts of priestcraft.

Priests are Governors, whether the laity like it or not. The Lord has appointed them such. If faithful, they will govern and will not ask the laity if they may. But "Govern" how? Scared with a self-created phantasmagoria of an imagined Priestcraft, men talk about a return to the "Middle Ages," of the reappearance of an "ancestral ghost" of which was written "not from any angel nor from any spirit, but from the Lord alone," (A. E. 1183), as being "not suited for New Church men or women," and as being "a medieval superstition, which still lives, but is now on its last legs." (See New Church Herald, 1923, p. 41.)

Hear another quotation, and this one from the instrument of the Lord's Second Advent himself: "As regards myself, I have not been allowed to take anything from the mouth of any spirit, nor from the mouth of any angel, but from the mouth of the Lord alone." (De Verbo 29.)

Which position shall have our credence, the former or the latter?

No! there can be no return to the foul practices of the Middle Ages in the Lord's New Church, for the breath and life of that Church is the FREEDOM which is declared to consist in being led by the Lord.

Again, Priests are governors. The very Word for the New Church declares it. But, again, "govern" how? On the plane of conscience. By the enunciating of Divinely revealed Doctrines. For the duty,--the whole duty,--of the Priest is, "To teach men the way to heaven, and to lead them. They ought to teach them according to the Doctrine of their Church from the Word, and should so lead them that they live according to that Doctrine." (H. D. 315.) And, again, mark it well--every word of it:

"Priests ought to teach the people, and through truths ought to lead them to the good of life; but still they ought not to compel any one; since no one can be compelled to believe what is opposed to that which in his heart he has thought to be true." (H. D. 31.)

That is the Law of the Church--the God-given Law of the Church. Can there be greater freedom than that embraced in that Law? Shall one hear the scream of, "That is dogmatic"? Why not? Has one no right to be emphatic in the assertion of his understanding and conception of those eternal verities which concern man's salvation? Is not one perfectly safe in that wholesome dogmatism, so-called, which is broadly based upon Divine Revelation? May it not be that those who so readily accuse others of dogmatizing, may be the greater dogmatists themselves,--and that from their own proprium, instead of Divine Revelation? To dogmatize is right, when the dogma is the faithful presentation of that which is revealed; and in so dogmatizing there may be, there should be, the greatest charity, and the truest recognition of real and solid liberty.

Yes, it is the bounden duty of the Priest to rule; but listen, and, again, from that Doctrine of Divine Truth, which is the Church, and is the Law for all truly in the Church: "There are two modes of exercising rule, the one is that of love towards the neighbour, and the other is that of the love of self." (H. D. 72.) These two modes of ruling are minutely described in that paragraph, and also in H. H. 213.

Who shall dare to say that in seeking to rule, as is their duty, spiritually understood, the Priests of the Church must, perforce, govern from the love of self, and only from that love? Is not the Priest equally as the layman to find his regeneration in and by the exercise of his Use; and why suspect that he will fail any more than the layman in seeking, by the help of the Lord, to shun all evil as sin against God?

One more brief but telling quotation from the Doctrines: "He who desires to domineer is nothing else (than a hypocrite); he is not able to acknowledge the Divine in heart." (S. D. 5791.) Yet, again, a most apposite passage: "The love of ruling ... has in itself hell.... It is not ruling over others in one's official position, but desiring to rule over others outside of that, not being content with its own domain." (S. D. 6052.)

"Verbum satis sapienti."

Alas! 'tis true, of course, it is true, that there may be cases of tyranny in the Priesthood. That simply means that the men to whom the office is adjoined are fallible, like all their fellow humans. But in His mercy, the Lord has provided against this, by decreeing that "among Priests, as governors, there muse be order ... and subordination." (H. D. 313.)

Note, nowhere in the Writings--nowhere--does it say anything about the Priests being in subordination to the laity--to Committees, to Councils, to Conferences, to Conventions, or to Assemblies. This could not be said, for it is against all order that that which is higher should be in subordination to that which is lower. Influx is all the other way about.

But among themselves, there must be order and subordination lest evils arise and flourish. And, among themselves, "The less wise consult the more wise, and these consult the Lord, and receive answers." (H. H. 214.)

In conclusion, what of the laity? They are no less necessary for the establishment of the Church than the clergy. Let there be no mistake here. Remember, though, the theme which was allotted to me was that of the Priesthood. That necessarily has had my chief attention. Two things I would urge in regard to the laity of the Church.

And first, that, as with the Priests, the: laity should know from spiritual light their proper place and keep it. The Church needs loyal laymen as much as it needs faithful Priests. They are dependent, under the Lord, upon each other. There should be no rivalry, no usurpation of the duties of the one by the other. Here it is that the base spirit of these degenerate days come into mar the Church's peace. The infernal attempt to set class against class, to do away with the rightful distinctions among men--distinctions after the pattern of those which obtain in the heavens,--this it is that curses the Church's organizations.

The clergy should teach should enunciate, from the Word the principles which must govern the wise actions of men, and then leave in freedom the laymen of the Church to carry out those principles as they see fitting opportunity so to do. That the office of the one is higher than the other is of no matter, save as order requires, for use; for all are under Him who, Alone in His Own Right is Priest and King.

The other thing I would say is concerned with the grave disorder of that which is called Lay-preaching. I submit that this is entirely contrary to the Doctrines of the Church.

One of the Presidents of the Conference once put this matter so forcefully that I am glad to quote his very words. He said, "Conference by creating a class of unordained Ministers whom it calls Licentiates, and by requiring candidates for the Ministry to exercise all the functions of the Ministry for two years, before it permits them to pass into the Ministry through the gate of ordination, is guilty of withholding from them those Divine gifts which are absolutely necessary for a proper performance of the Ministerial function; and to the same extent it disregards and breaks the Divine Law of order in respect to the Ministry of the New Church which the Lord revealed for His New Church, through His Servant--EMANUEL SWEDENBORG." (DR. TAFEL'S Address as President, 1888.) With those sentiments I heartily agree, and I submit that they are unanswerable.

But, in saying this, I hasten with thankful steps to make a frank and sincere acknowledgment of the priceless services which some laymen, Licentiates and Preachers; have given to the Church.
With nothing but feeling of deepest gratitude and admiration do I recall among others, the names of EDWARD AUSTIN, RICHARD GUNTON and CLAUDE TOBY. They did splendid work for the Lord towards the upbuilding of His Church. All honour to them. Yes, but they were in disorder; end who dares deny that their work, undoubtedly great as it was, would not have been still greater, and more enduring, had they had all the benefits of ordination? Two of them discussed this question with me, and nothing but the organization? and the so-called powers that were, prevented their coming into full order.

Is it whispered that they were ordained by Heaven, and that the other ordination was simply the matter of a service, and the laying on of hands? Will you apply the same rule to Baptism? By that rite the spirit of the child is placed among spirits of a like faith. Does ordination do less? When does a young man need more all the help that he can have than in the two most trying, because first, years of his Ministerial life? But, apart from human need, it is Heaven's Law of Order that a man should enter into the Priesthood by the gate of ordination, and he has no spiritual right to officiate in that Holy Office save by passing through the heaven-appointed portal.

I have been told that there are unordained men to-day preaching more solid and helpful sermons than some Reverends preach. I have no difficulty in believing that. But that fact does not disprove, nor do away with the teaching. Why not ordain any men who, in the judgment of the Priests of the Church, are fit and proper persons to teach and to baptize? That they may have to engage in some secular calling as well, to earn a living, may be a regrettable necessity, and of permission. But if they are fit to preach, and capable of administering the things of worship, why not give them all the help which the Load has provided?

This is not a question for a Conference, a Convention, or an Assembly. These bodies have no power to ordain. A masterly paper showing this was read before the Conference in Manchester in 1830 by the late: REV. SAMUEL NOBLE, and it still stands as a faithful presentation of the matter for the instruction of the Church. It is the duty of the Priests, and where the Priesthood is ordered in the Trinal form as prescribed by the Doctrines, there should be no difficulty in introducing any capable man into the first degree of the Priesthood, when the Priests of higher degree in their judgment deem that man called and prepared for that sacred Use.

This then, as a Priest of the Lord's New Church, is my plea for the whole-hearted recognition, by all who belong to the outward organization, of the Priestly Use: that it is "The First of the Church"; that its "authority" is from Heaven; that its "order" has been clearly outlined in the Revelation by which the Lord has made His Second Advent; and that its "governance" is on the spiritual plane, that by those duly called and ordained, the members of the Church may be led by truth to good.

My cry is SET THE PRIESTHOOD FREE; and this plea is for no greater authority of men as men, for no domineering by the proprium of man, but for the whole-hearted recognition of the order prescribed by heaven, that there may be a greater presence of the Lord with and in His Church, for again it is written: "When the Lord is present, then all things are arranged into order by His presence. The Lord is order itself, therefore where He is present, there is order, and where order is, there He is present." (A. C 5703.) All of which is confirmed by the Lord's words: "Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine, no more can ye, except ye abide in Me." (John xv. 4.)



(Address to the Annual Meeting of the New Church Club, June 10, 1927, at "Ye Old London Restaurant," Ludgate Hill, London.)

THERE can be but one living and true Church of the Lord upon earth at any given time. This has ever been so since the creation of the world. One God, and one true Church. For, it is written, "The Church on earth is the foundation of heaven since the influx of good and truth through the heavens from the Lord ultimately terminates in the goods and truths which are with the man of the Church." (A. C. 4060.) And, again, "The Church in the heavens cannot subsist except there be also a Church on earth, which is in concordant love and wisdom.... The reason why a Church cannot subsist in the heavens unless there is a Church on earth in conjunction with it, is because heaven where the angels are, and the Church where men are, act as one, like the internal and the external with man; and the internal with man cannot subsist in its state unless the external be conjoined with it for the internal without the external is as a house without a foundation.... From this it may be seen how absolutely necessary it is, that somewhere in the world there must be a Church, where the Word is, and where by means of it the Lord is known." (A. R. 533.)

Now, accepting this teaching,--this doctrine--as from the Lord, the vital question arises WHERE is that Church on earth to be found to-day, which is "in concordant love and wisdom" with the Church as exists in the heavens? To ask that question before an audience such as this is, of course, to answer it for where else can such a Church be found save in the Church of the New Jerusalem, that Church which is signified the "Holy City, New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven," spoken of in the last chapter but one of the Word of the New Testament? Of that "City," it is most interestingly said, "John saw it first as a city, and afterwards as an espoused virgin, as a city representatively, and as an espoused virgin spiritually, thus under a twofold idea, the one within or above the other, precisely as the angels do." (A. R. 881.)

As to the angels, in the matter of their thought concerning the Church, it is revealed "When they see, or hear, or read in the Word of a City, in an idea of inferior thought they perceive a city, but in an idea of superior thought they perceive the Church as to Doctrine and if they desire it, and pray to the Lord, they see it as a virgin in beauty and apparel, according to the quality of the Church." (ibid.) The human instrument of the Second Advent, tells us, in the same paragraph, that he also was permitted thus to see the Church both representatively and spiritually; and, then, under Divine inspiration, he adds, "The Church is no otherwise arrayed for her espousals, and afterwards for conjunction or marriage, than by the Word, for this is the only medium of conjunction or marriage, because the Word is from the Lord, and concerning the Lord and thus is the Lord." (ibid.) The true and living Church,--the ONLY living Church now upon earth, is that Church which is arrayed in the garments, the "beautiful garments" of the Divine Word, which is the "only medium of conjunction" with heaven and thus with the Lord.       

The New Church--the New Jerusalem Church--therefore, is the ONLY living Church at this day upon the earth; for it is Divinely revealed of that Church, that "The New Church is not established, before the former Church is consummated." (Coronis, Syllabus III.)

And, now, another and equally vital question arises, viz.: WHO compose that only living Church? And the answer comes in the Gospel of the Second Advent, as follows: "It is believed that the Church exists where the Word is, and where the Lord is known; but yet the Church consists only of those who from the heart acknowledge the Divine of the Lord, and who learn truths from the Lord by the Word, and do them: no others constitute the Church." (A. E. 388.) And, again, "They alone are of the Church in whom the Church is; and the Church is in those who are in the affection of truth for the sake of truth, and in the affection of good for the sake of good; thus who are in love towards the neighbour, and in love to God; for the neighbour is good and truth, and also is God, since good and truth are of God, thus are God with them. They who are not such, are not of the Church howsoever they may be in the Church." (A. C. 10310.)

In this Divine Teaching, it will be noticed that the term "Church" is used in a twofold sense. It is used to denominate those who are in the true and living Church--the Church comprised of those in whom the Church is; and it is also used to designate those who are in the so-called Church, which professes to be a Church but is not more of a Church than a mere name; the Church as a mere institution, the Church as a mere profession of faith; but not characterized either by the affection of truth for the sake of truth, or by the virtues of love to the neighbour, and to God. Thus there are some who although they are IN the Church, as an external; are not OF the Church as an internal; and that only is a true and living Church, which is internal and at the same time, also external.

That which is merely external, and has not a living internal, is dead and consummated. It is, spiritually considered, a "carcase," and a corpse. This is especially true of the Church; for there are many Churches,--so-called Churches,--but there is only one true Church; only one Living Church; even the Church of the New Jerusalem, the Specific Church of the Lord upon earth.

Surely this is a self-evident truth and conclusion; but because it is a self-evident truth, the product of that "self-evidencing reason of love" by which alone the true Church can be established, (Canons, Prologue)--because it is so self-evident a truth, the hells rise up, in the natural mind, ever seeking to undermine and pervert it. To this end sentiment, natural feeling, and spurious charity lend their devastating aid. Such teaching is said to be harsh, because it is unpalatable; and those who so regard it, forget that the world needs mental and spiritual physic for the healing of its all-too-patent evils and falsities; and the world had better take it, and grin and bear it.

But is such teaching harsh, and uncharitable? Only when, through ignorance, or hardness of heart, it is not rightly understood. The truth is never anything else or less than the manifestation of love--Divine love. As it is with the Lord, the Word, and Heaven, so is it with the Church, viz.: that man can form no true judgment, nor have any correct knowledge concerning it, save that which comes from Divine Revelation. Nothing is true, concerning the Church, save that which is revealed in the opened Word.

In that wondrous Book of the Second Advent, by title, Invitation to the New Church, it is written "That man cannot discover a single Divine Truth, except by approaching the Lord immediately, is due to this, that the Lord alone is the Word, and that He is very Light and very Truth, and that except from the Lord alone, man does not become spiritual, but remains natural; and the natural man, in spiritual things, sees everything in inverted order." (Inv. 22.) Let those closing words be burnt into your thought,--burnt by the holy flame of the sincere affection of truth--"The natural man, in spiritual things, sees everything in inverted order." That is the Lord's statement; not Swedenborg's, still less mine.

Now, turning to Divine Revelation, that in the Lord's Light we may see light, let the question be asked and answered, HOW and WHEN was the only living and true Church now on earth established? To reply to this query we must first go to the spiritual world; for all causes are in that world. The Church of the New Jerusalem, the Crown of all the Churches, was instituted in the spiritual world on the 19th day of June, in the year 1779. To institute it there, the Lord called together His twelve disciples, who followed Him in the world, and sent them "Out into the whole spiritual world, to preach the Gospel, that the Lord God Jesus Christ reigns, whose reign will be for ages of ages." (T. C. R 791.) Would it not be well, Brethren, if, more frequently than we are wont to do, we turned our eyes to the work done by the Apostles there? We are there too, as to our spirits. There is much revealed as to what they did, and how they carried out their holy mission. What part do we play there by thinking with the angels about this great theme; for we do think with the angels, yea, spiritually, we speak with them, when we study and reflect upon the teachings of the Angelic Word, as revealed in the Writings of the Church.

Having formed the New Heaven, and thus the New Church in the spiritual world, the Lord caused the Holy City, New Jerusalem, to descend to earth; and He instituted that Church in this world by giving to man the Heavenly Doctrines of the New Jerusalem, through the instrumentality of EMANUEL SWEDENBORG; and when the Theological Writings of this man were published, or rather when they were written, then the Lord made His Second Advent, and making it, instituted, in potency, His New Church in this world.

This institution of the Church of the New Jerusalem on earth assumed its full ultimation, in lowest organic form, in the year 1783, when three or four earnest Receivers of the Heavenly Doctrines met every Sunday morning in the house of the ever-to-be-honoured ROBERT HINDMARSH, in Clerkenwell Close, not far from the spot where SWEDENBORG died. The first meeting consisted of a trine of persons,--an Apothecary, a Clock-case maker, and a Printer: Messrs. PETER, PROVO, WILLIAM BONINGTON, and ROBERT HINDMARSH. Shortly afterwards they were joined by Mr. JOHN AUGUSTUS TULK, from Kennington Lane, Vauxhall. Towards the end of that year, "it was agreed to call a public meeting of all the friends and readers of the Writings in London, of whom we had any certain information; first, that we might become better acquainted with each other; end, secondly, to unite our forces, and make known to the world what we could no longer in conscience conceal from their notice." So wrote ROBERT HINDMARSH in his Classic, Rise and Progress of the New Church. (See p. 14.)

Men and Brethren, speaking from Use and for Use, be it remembered that we meet, at this present, on holy ground. In this very building the first public Meeting, in connection with the Lord's New Church on earth, was held. For HINDMARSH continues in his precious record, "Our first public meeting was accordingly fixed to be at the London Coffee House, on Ludgate Hill, where we met, five in number, at 5 o'clock on Thursday Evening, the 5th of December, 1783."

In this building, however, sufficient privacy could not be found, and so the little party,--the saintly five,--adjourned "to the Queen's Arms Tavern," afterwards called St. Paul's Hotel, in St. Paul's Church Yard, at the corner of Dean's Court. There they "drank tea together," indulged in "mutual congratulations," reading letters from absent friends in the country, and realizing, to quote again, "that the New Jerusalem is in the act of descending from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride and adorned for her Husband; that the angels are already stretching out the curtains, lengthening the cords, and strengthening the states of a new habitation on the earth for the Most High to dwell in; and that the Tabernacle of God is about to be set up with men, who will dwell with them, and cause them to be His people, while He Himself shall be acknowledged and worshipped as their only Lord and God." (Rise and Progress, p. 16.)

Thus was the Church of the Living. God--the Church as a new dispensation--instituted for the last time, upon earth, for that Church, unlike its forerunners, will endure for ever. The New Jerusalem had now descended from God out of heaven. The Lord had made His Second Advent, for upon all the precious Rooks, by which that Advent was made, in the spiritual world, was written "HIC LIBER EST ADVENTUS DOMINI." ("This Book is the Advent of the Lord.") And what did this institution and establishment of the Church, to be called the New Jerusalem (A. R. 886), involve? First, it involved the salvation anew of the human race. Nothing less. What a mighty involvement. It is written in the Faith of the New Heaven and the New Church which is set forth at the beginning of the True Christian Religion "that it may serve as a. gate of entrance into the Temple": "Unless the Lord had come into the world no flesh could have been saved." This of the First Advent. It is, however, added," It is the same to-day; wherefore unless the Lord had come again into the world, in Divine Truth, which is the Word, no one could be saved." (T. C. R. 3.)

This assuredly means that unless the Writings of the Church, which are the spiritual sense of the Word, had been given, the human race would have perished. Is this rationally appreciated and realized? It is a stupendous fact. It means nothing less than this, that man's salvation depended upon the spiritual sense of the Word being revealed and that only by the power of that system of Divine Truth, which, in its turn, "is the Word," can the world to-day be saved from destruction.

In replying to the query, What of the first Christian Church, it is necessary to recall the teaching above referred to, that "the natural man, in spiritual things, sees everything in inverted order." (Inv. 22.)

What, then, does Revelation say in respect of the first Christian Church, after the birth of the New Jerusalem? In the Invitation to the New Church it is written, "That at the present day there are none other than false Churches, is owing to this circumstance, that they did not approach the Lord, when yet the Lord is the Word, and the very Light which enlighteneth the whole world." (Inv. 38.) Again, "The idea of God as a Man is engrafted from Heaven in every nation on the globe, but ... it is destroyed in Christendom." (A. E. 1097.) again, "The idea of the Divine Human of the Lord is altogether destroyed in the Christian Churches." (A. E. 808.)

This, then, is the teaching of Divine Revelation, and only those who are willing to abide by such teaching are able to see the true character of the first Christian Church in its consummation. In this connection the only question worthy of thought is what is the truth as revealed. But why dwell upon, or revert to so sad a picture? Simply and solely from this spiritual law that as it is necessary for regeneration that a man must shun evils before he can do that which is truly good; so, to this same end, must man know the real character of falsity, before he can intelligently receive the gems of Divine Truth. What a privilege and responsibility are cast upon all those who have been called into the only living Church on earth at this time, by the stupendous fact just stated! In the face of fact what other can every honest and sincere man and woman, thus called, do than put the Church first--first in love, in thought and in deed; and so cause "World" and the "Flesh" to take a subservient position, that "Devil" may be nowhere?

This much, then, concerning the "New Jerusalem"--the true Church of the Lord, which the Divine Word asserts is "Builded as a City that is compact together." (Ps. cxxii. 3.) But what of the old Jerusalem; the consummated first Christian Church?

The only possible answer, in the light of revealed truth, is that it is "DEAD"--dead as any carcase which has ceased to breathe: "Consummated" and "Dead." According to Revelation that Church was a Church "in name only, not in reality and essence." (T.C.R. 868.) To that Church spiritual truth was given only on the natural plane. The True Christian Church, "such as it is in itself began when the Church of the New Jerusalem was instituted, thus at the Second Advent of the Lord for then Divine Truth was given on the rational plane, wherein resides the truly Human. Now, in order to avoid seeing things in inverted order, one must be careful to guard against those things which always attend upon, and sometimes sway, merely natural thought, viz.: those things which are said to vanish when spiritual thought is exercised, that which is of time, of space, and of person. (A. C. 5253.) Thought must be from principles, even the principles of revealed Doctrine. Names such as Roman Catholic, Protestant, Established Church, Nonconformist, Unitarian, Methodist, Christian Science, Theosophy, or Modernists, prove nothing, and condemn nothing. They simply indicate merely external differences in government or ritual, or in the application of certain fundamental principles. They are sects either of the Consummated Church, or of the world which is dominated by that Church and its deadly sphere.

So far as any sect, or community of men, stands for the Tri-personality of the Godhead; for Faith alone; for the denial of God as a Divine Man; for the replacing of the authority of Divine Revelation by the standard of human experience; for the dragging down of lying spirits into this world; for materialism, putting Nature in the place of God; and for the domination of man over man, from self-intelligence, in spiritual things; so far are they, one and all, of the Consummated Church, or under her mental and moral sphere and sway.

The sine qua non of membership in the only living Church of the Lord upon earth is:

1. Belief in the Lord Jesus Christ as the one and only God of heaven and earth.

2. Belief in the Divine Word, that it is verbally inspired in its original, that its letter contains within it, as its soul, a spiritual sense, that that spiritual sense has within it a celestial sense; and that within the celestial sense there is a Divine Sense which is the Lord.

3. A living Belief, i.e. a Belief which lives, that all evils must be shunned as sins against God.

These are fundamentals; and all who deny or equivocate as to these are not of the Church of the New Jerusalem; and therefore are outside of the one only living Church of the Lord now upon the earth.

Never lose sight of these basic Truths of Divine Revelation, first as taught in the True Christian Religion, where it is written: "Unless God is approached in thought as a Man, all idea of Him perishes." (T. C. R. 538.) And, as taught in the Arcana, "Things not true communicate with evil spirits." (A. C. 6769) There is not the slightest excuse for those professing to be of the Lord's New Church, to be in any uncertainty as to the real state of the first Christian Church in its desolation, or as to the true state of the so-called Christian world. Let the mind he raised above persons, yea, above institutions of sinful men and women; raised into the light of the Truths of Revelation, and the Truth will be seen in its force and beauty; and will reward the diligent searcher, by the realization that the Truth is none other than the covering and conveyance of Infinite Love.

Above all, let those who would see, in Divine light, the true state of the Old Jerusalem, and of the world environing it, be careful lest they be deceived by mere appearances. In the judgment you form be most careful that you go from internals to externals, and that you judge not from the appearance. Heed especially the teaching of the work on the Last Judgment, in which it is written: "The state of the world hereafter will be precisely similar to what it has been hitherto; for this great change which has been effected in the spiritual world, does not induce any change in the natural world, as to the outward form.... But as for the state of the Church, this it is which will be dissimilar hereafter; it will be similar indeed as to outward appearance, but dissimilar as to internal." (L. J. 73.)

Remember, it is the internals which count in everything. Externals are mere coverings. Internals are the soul, and the soul is the life, the real thing. The internal of the Old Jerusalem,--the first Christian Church,--is dead; the internal of a. true belief in God has gone; and when the idea of God is erroneous, everything flowing from it is saturated with that wrong, and is perverted and dead.

But, it may be asked--What about those in the Old Church, who form the vast majority of mankind? Are they outside the pale of salvation? The question is largely a futile one, and should afford no real difficulty to any thoughtful person in the Lord's New Church.

In His Infinite Mercy the Lord has provided that the good of all religions shall be saved. Read that which He has revealed in the Arcana Coelestia concerning Abraham's petition that Sodom should not be destroyed if "Ten just ones" should be found therein: "It is a very common thing with those who have conceived an opinion respecting any truth of faith, to judge that others cannot be saved, but by believing as they do, which nevertheless the Lord forbids (Matt. vii. 1, 2). Accordingly, it has been made known to me by much experience, that persons of every religion may be saved, if only by a life of charity they have received Remains of good and of apparent truth. The life of charity consists in thinking well of others, and willing well to others, and perceiving joy in oneself at this fact, that others may be saved; whereas, they have not the life of charity who are not willing that any should be saved, but such as believe as they themselves do, and especially if they are indignant that it should be otherwise." (A. C. 2284.) This is the teaching of the spiritual sense of the Word, and the spiritually minded man rejoices in this all-glorious message and assurance from heaven. But recall the statement, mentioned twice before in this paper, "The natural man, in spiritual things, sees everything in inverted order."

Have not many in the organized New Church forgotten this teaching in their almost frenzied zeal for that which is called Missionary work in the world? May it not be that many of those who have remained in the former Church are safer there than they would be within the congregations of the so-called New Church? It is suggested, with all seriousness, that better would it have been for the New Church as an organization in the world, if it had heeded more carefully the Divine command, "Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and its justice," by concentrating upon the interior instruction of those who willingly came into the Church, by ways we know not, it may be; and had concentrated upon their children, giving them the benefits of real solid New-Church Education; rather than have been consumed by a care of the world, making strenuous efforts to haul in the strangers.

Further, has it been realized as fully as might be that the very falsities of the old Church may, in the wondrous workings of the Divine Providence, be a greater protection to the simple good than a superficial knowledge of the truths of the New Church, bereft of an acknowledgment of their Divine authority, would prove to be?

Heed this teaching of the Arcana Coelestia, "When a man is being regenerated, he is let into combats against falsities, and he is then kept by the Lord in truth, but in that truth which he had persuaded himself was the truth; and from this truth combat is waged against falsity. Combat may be waged even from truth not genuine, provided only that it be such that, by some means, it can be conjoined with good, and it is conjoined with good by means of innocence, for innocence is the medium of conjunction. Hence it is that those within the Church are capable of being regenerated, in whatever doctrine they may be, but especially those who are in genuine truths." (A. C. 6765.) Add to that this further statement from the same Work: "Many are regenerated by the Lord, holding every kind of dogmatic belief." (A. C. 1043, also 8521.)

The Lord is ever mindful of His Own. He knows best how to effect His Church for the salvation of all; and man's anxiety to "add unto the Church" may easily be tinged with proprial conceit; and may very easily overstep the bounds of lawful effort, especially when instigated by sentiment, and urged by the itch of proselytizing, so dear to the "natural man" which "in spiritual things sees everything in inverted order."

It may well be that those in the Old Church organizations who are good at heart, that is who are in natural charity and innocence, largely accompanied by ignorance, may be blinded by the falsities of doctrines which they superficially embrace, so that they should not come yet into the acknowledgment of the higher truths of the Word, which if they knew, they would, in their present state, profane. It MAY be. The Lord knows, and He alone. It should never be forgotten that we do not know the interior states of our fellow men: neither do we know the interior states of communities of men; yea, we do not know even the interior states of ourselves, our own souls. Therefore, "Judge not"; either in favour or disfavour. It is as harmful to do the one as the other. Appearances are ever deceptive; and the evil, as well as the good, may show an appetite for the truth, yet not for the sake of the truth.

Judging from appearances, and because they have seen "spiritual things in inverted order," some have charged those who have contended for the state of the so-called Christian world, with being such as is revealed in the Writings, as uncharitable and harsh. That is not true. Folly and cruelty have been with them who have endeavoured to persuade those in a false religion that their darkness is really light; instead of showing them, from charity, that their light is really darkness. Be it frankly and unmistakenly said that the rightful condemnation of the consummated first Christian Church is an act of charity, a deed of mercy; and is expressed in the spirit of heaven, and from a love for the salvation of souls. The natural man may not believe this, but so it is, for he "in spiritual things sees everything in inverted order."

In conclusion, then, what is the duty of those who, in the Lord's mercy, and not for their own merit, have been called into the holy living Church of the Lord,--the Church of the New Jerusalem?

What other can that duty be but to preach, to teach, and to live those Divine Truths, by the revealing of which the Lord has made His Second Advent, coming no longer to men mediately through representatives and correspondences, as in the Words of the Old and New Testaments, but immediately, in His Divine Human, accommodated to the rational mind of man, opening to man's spiritual sight the Mansions of Heaven, that man may be conjoined with Him for evermore? But these Divine Truths should be taught in the Lord's way, and not in man's. No unholy accommodation. No pretence that, by some mysterious way these Divine Truths are coming to man from within the folds of the consummated Church, or by the aids, and from the sources of, material science No playing. up to the loves of self and the world, or looking to mere social life as the door into the fold of the Church.

The world is afflicted and sore; its downward trend is towards hell; self and the world are dominant. Externalism and indifference have crept into the very organizations calling themselves of the Church, both the so-called New, and the rejected Old.

To those of the so-called New Church, (and they are to be found in all the various schools of thought) the words of the Lord come with terrible force, "Woe to them that are at ease in Zion, and trust in the mountain of Samaria." (Amos vi. 1.)

Again, the Lord says to those who embrace the Doctrines of the New, "Arise, let us go hence"hence from the influence of the former Church, breathing indifference, laxity, and self-complacency; "hence" from the mere profession of faith upon the authority of man, be he Swedenborg or another; "hence" into an open, and candid confession that the Doctrines of the New Church come with the authority of a "Thus saith the Lord"; "hence" into the full-hearted acknowledgment that the Theological Writings of EMANUEL SWEDENBORG are veritable Scriptures from heaven, by and through which the Lord is redeeming a second time the souls of men. Such is the clarion call of the Lord at this day appealing to the heart, the mind, and the life of man; and be it known that the most powerful and living distinction between the New Jerusalem and the Old, will be, and must be, not a mere matter of organization, not a question of
"his doxy" or "my doxy," but the creation within the New, of a New Church Sphere; a Sphere of affection, of thought, and of conversation; a Sphere originating from the affection of truth for the sake of truth, and radiating, as a spiritual radium, from the personalities of all who profess to be disciples of the Lord at the time of His Second Coming. Everything has its own particular Sphere, from man, as the crown of creation, to the very dust upon which he treads. (S. D. 1848.) But the New Church Sphere should be, and can be, the most powerful of Spheres; for when true, it is full of the presence of the Lord; full of the Spirit of His Word; radiant with all the joys of heaven, and brilliant with all the various hues of the jewels of spiritual truth.

We plead for this Sphere, which shall be none other than that of the Holy Spirit. We ask not for merely an "atmosphere," too often the product of self and the world. The word atmosphere comes from the two Greek words which mean "vapour" and "sphere." We desire not mere "vapour"; the world is full of the vapours of sentiment.

We plead for the Sphere of the New Jerusalem, flowing from the Gardens of the Heavens, even from that paradise of "ADRAMANDONI," the Garden of Conjugial Love (C. L. 183); for this shall be the most powerful force in the world for the realization of the "Marriage of the Lamb."

One final word. The outlook to-day, as the appearances come to us, is dark,--dark with disappointments, and deadened with indifference. Policy still stalks the land of the Church. But the Lord rules. He has mercifully protected His Church. There are Bishops, Pastors, Priests and Laymen who have not bowed the knee to the Baal of expediency. We thank the Lord for all the institutions of His Church--His New Jerusalem--who are working for His Kingdom that it may be established among men.

The site of the house in which Swedenborg lived in Hornsgatan, Sweden, is indicated by a tablet which, translated, states "The time will come when there will be illustration." (See A. C. 4402.) That time has come; the Lord has completed His Word in its external manifestations. "The Temple of God is opened in heaven." (Apoc. xi. 19.) Over the gate of that Temple is written these words, "NUNC LICET," which signifies that "now it is allowable to enter intellectually into the mysteries of faith." To all who have been called to His New Jerusalem, the Lord says: "Arise, be thou enlightened, for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord hath risen upon thee." (Isaiah lx. 1.)




(Address to the New Church Club, London, December 12, 1930.)

THE subject with which we are to deal is old, yet ever new. It is old, because the Lord gave the Word in the beginning, and the Word, being the Lord, is infinite, and therefore must necessarily be for ever new. Never will the inspired petition be out of date: "Open Thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of Thy law." (Ps. cxix. 18.)

As we are dealing with the Word, we are treading on holy ground, and therefore should take off the shoes of merely natural thought, and think in spiritual light, that we may truly "see light." (Ps. xxxvi. 9.)

That we are thus circumstanced, is seen from that which is revealed: "By means of the Word the Lord is present with man, and is conjoined with him, because the Lord is the Word, and in it He, as it were, speaks with man; because, too, the Lord is Divine Truth Itself, and the Word also is Divine Truth." (S. S. 78.) In the light of this Divine teaching, it is for us to commence our study with the recognition that the Word is not ours, but the Lord's, that we have no proprietary interest in it, and, therefore, that we must deal impersonally with it, and by no means assert our proprium in its consideration. Thus we shall be mindful of the Lord's admonition: "Let all, therefore, take heed lest they injure the Word in any manner, for they who injure the Word injure the Divine Itself." (A. C. 9430, end.)

In justification of the title given to this paper, we quote from De Verbo: "The natural Word, such as it is in the world, in Christendom, contains within itself both the spiritual Word and the celestial Word;... but in the spiritual Word and the celestial Word is not contained the natural Word. For this reason the Word of our world is most full of Divine Wisdom, and therefore more holy than the Words in the heavens." (De Verbo 35.)

Thus we have the three Words, and they are elsewhere called the "Word of the Old Testament," the "Word of the New Testament" (A. C. 1690), and "the spiritual Word" (De Verbo 32), the last named being also called "the Gospel of the New Advent of the Lord." (T. C. R. 669.) These three Words are revealed in three languages,--the Hebrew, the Greek, and the Latin,--the same three as were employed in the title of the Lord in His final temptation, which was that of the cross.

As to the three senses of the Word, out of many passages teaching this fact we select the following: "In the Word there is an external sense, an internal sense, and an inmost sense. The Word in the external sense is such as appears in the letter. This sense is natural, because it is accommodated to the apprehension of men, for men think naturally. The Word in the internal sense is spiritual, which sense is accommodated to the understanding of the angels in the spiritual kingdom of the Lord, for those angels think spiritually; but the Word in the inmost sense is celestial, this sense being accommodated to the perception of the angels in the celestial kingdom of the Lord, for angels in that kingdom think supraspiritually." (A. C. 10614.) Thus there are three senses in the Word,--the "sense of the letter," the "spiritual sense," and the "celestial sense."

It is a precious study to see how these Words are related to each other, and to realize how the second is in the first, and the third is in the two former Words. This is especially seen, for example, in the 5th chapter of Matthew, verses 21, 27, 33, 38, and 43; beginning with the words, "Ye have heard that it was said to them of old time," etc. We find a similar example in the treatment of the Decalogue in the True Christian Religion, the Apocalypse Explained, and the Arcana Coelestia.

Here we would recall the teaching of Divine Revelation that the Word exists in the heavens. It must be so; for the Word is the Lord, and flows down out of heaven from Him, and again returns to Him. Of the latest Word,--that revealed as the spiritual sense,--it is declared that its contents are "truths continuous from the Lord." (T. C. R. 5085.)

The teaching further is, that in the heavens they have the "entire Word, from the beginning to the end, so written that everyone can read it." (S. D. 5603.) And again: "A copy of the Word, written by the angels, inspired by the Lord, is kept in every larger society in heaven, in its sacred repository, lest elsewhere it should be altered as to any point." (S. S. 72.) Note especially the closing words, "Lest elsewhere it should be altered its to any point," for surely this statement should remove any and every anxiety from the student of the Word as to its integrity, despite the fact that none of the very earliest MSS. of the Word are now extant. The Word, in its entirety, is safe in the heavens. Swedenborg saw it there, and through him the very number and order of the Books of the Word have been given in the Writings of the Church,--the latest "immediate revelation from heaven." (H. H. 1, end.)

This much, in passing, as to the Word in the heavens. We now turn to the Word as it is with us upon earth. Here, as is to be expected, we find it in a threefold form, as in the heavens.

Man was created in the image of God, and also in the image of the three heavens. As there are three heavens, so there are three Words, and as each heaven has its own sense in which the Word is revealed to its inhabitants, there are three senses in the Word as it is with man; for by creation he "communicates with the three heavens." (A. C. 4279.) These, however, are the general divisions of the heavens, and of the Word. There are other divisions than these three, both in the heavens and in the Word.

There is the heaven of "human internals," which is nearest to the Lord Himself, and is above the inmost angelic heaven. (A. C. 1999.) So in the Word there is a Divine Sense, in which alone there is absolute Truth, and this is known to the Lord alone. Below this there are not only the celestial,
spiritual, and natural senses of the Word, but also a sense intermediate between the purely spiritual sense and the sense of the letter, which is celled the "internal historical sense," in which the spiritual sense is more especially determined to a particular nation. This sense is reckoned as
the fourth sense in A. C. 4310 and A. E. 1066, but of this we shall speak later.

Here let us say a few words as to the real meaning and the proper use of the term "sense," especially as applied to the Word. The term "sense" is not synonymous with either the term "form" or the term "letter," and should never be used as such. The best dictionaries speak of "sense" as implying the "meaning" or the "import" of a thing. (Webster.) It is not the form, the expression, or the format of that to which it is applied; but it refers to that which is within the form, expression, and format. The great and important difference between the sense and the words or forms of a thing is seen clearly in the statement: "It appears as if the words of speech were in the thought; but this is a fallacy; it is only the sense of the speech which is there." (A. C. 6987:2.)

In the light of this teaching, therefore, whenever the term "sense" is applied to any of the three forms of the Word with man, it can never be rightly used as meaning the "verbal statements" of the particular Word of the three Words to which it may be applied. No mere "verbal statements," either of the Old Testament, the New Testament, or the Writings, can rightly be called the corporeal, o, the natural, or the spiritual "sense" of the Word. In every case, the "sense" is that which is within the "verbal statements"; for the words employed are but the forms, covering or expressing the within them. Let us, therefore, be careful of the terms we use, lest we misrepresent each other, and so injure the Word in each other,--that Word which we all sincerely love, and which we believe to be the Lord Himself.

In considering the three senses of the Divine Word, it is essential to remember that they are separated from each other by discrete degrees, but that they are also conjoined by correspondences. Then, too, it should be remembered that each sense is representative of the one that is higher, or nearer to the Lord; that is to say, each sense represents the Lord's Truth on a plane suited to the apprehension of those to whom that sense is given, and for whom it is especially provided. Thus is the chain of Divine Truth in its six degrees (A. C. 8443) maintained in continuity, from the Lord to man.

The greatest care, however, should be taken that the six degrees of Divine Truth do not become confused in the mind with the three or four senses of the Word. For example, as to the representative character of the senses of the Word, that which is called the spiritual sense is representative of the supreme or inmost sense; that is, it represents the same Divine Truth on lower plane, and in a lower degree. For we read: "The Lord is Doctrine Itself, that is, the Word, not only as to the highest sense therein, but also as to the internal sense and even as to the literal sense, for this sense is representative and significative of the internal sense, as the internal sense is representative and significative of the highest sense." (A. C. 3393.)

For those who desire to go even more deeply into the fascinating study of the senses of the Word, it should be noted that in A. C. 4310 all the senses are mentioned, and their relation, the one to the other, stated; and if that study be pursued, then it is interesting to read, together with that passage, S. D. 5606, where we are taught concerning the four different classes of men who read the Word, as to their several dispositions towards the Sacred Scripture, which will be found to correspond exactly to the four senses of the Word. It will also be intensely interesting to study what is revealed in Spiritual Diary 1190 to 1194, under the heading: "On the Exterior, Interior, and Inmost senses of the Word." It is there shown that the four senses were represented to Swedenborg's vision by little girls, an adolescent girl, a virgin, and a face only. A beautiful picture in words is there drawn, giving material for much inspiring thought and productive reflection.

But let us proceed to take the generally denominated three senses of the Word, with a brief notice also of the fourth sense, as referred to above; and to seek to show what they are, and where they are to be found by man. This we propose to do by taking them in a descending series, as conning from the Lord, who is the Word, and who for the purpose of redemption and salvation became the "Word made flesh," and, by glorification, returned to the Divine, and is for ever "our Father in the heavens," One God over all, blessed for ever.


This is also called the supreme, the inmost, and the highest sense of the Word. Of this sense it is written: "The Word in the inmost sense is celestial, this sense being accommodated to the perception of the angels in the celestial kingdom of the Lord, for the angels in that kingdom think supraspiritually." (A. C. 10614.)

The celestial angels see this sense in the letter of the Word, not from the words themselves, but from the "inflexions and curvatures," that is, from the little accents, jots and tittles. This, of course, in the original Hebrew.

This celestial sense of the Word is a universal sense, and, because it is celestial, it is therefore, of Love. The Lord, who is infinite Love, alone is in it. It is written again: "The subjects treated of in the highest sense of the Word are the Lord alone, His Love, His Providence, His Kingdom in the heavens and on earth, and especially the glorification of His Human." (A. C. 940711. See also 6827, 8688, 5576.)

It should be particularly noted that but little of this highest sense is revealed in human words. In and according to Divine order it could not be fully revealed in mere earthly forms. It is too internal, too near to the Lord Himself, for that; and yet it had to be revealed to some extent in lowest forms, so that it might reach down to very ultimates. In the Arcana Coelestia it is given to some extent in connection with the births of the sons of Jacob. (A. C. 3869-3969.) It is also given in brief in the True Christian Religion, in the Apocalypse Revealed and in the Apocalypse Explained.

The celestial sense is far more a matter of perception than of external revelation. It is the Word written on the heart, given gratis by the Lord, in proportion as the lower truths of the Word are loved and lived. As it is the highest, it also inwardly descends to the lowest, finding its ultimate in the moral virtue of obedience. It is revealed of the celestial sense that it "can scarcely be unfolded, for it does not fall so much into the thought of the understanding as into the affection of the will." (S. S. 19. See also S. D. 4671.) Again: "The spiritual sense is the 'spirit' of the Word, and the celestial sense is its 'life.' This is what the Lord said in John vi. 63, 'The words that I speak unto you are spirit and are life.'" (S. S. 39.)

Before quitting this brief account of the supreme sense of the Word would refer to the teaching of Chapter XIV of De Verbo, which seems to unite the internal with the external of the celestial sense of the Word. In that Chapter it is taught that the celestial angels, when reading their Word, do not read, for the Name of the Lord, the term "Yehowah," but "Lord"--of course, in their equivalent language and this for the reason that the name "Yehowah" signifies the very Divine Itself. And the Jews were forbidden to use the name "Yehowah," as being too holy for their use; and even the Lord Himself, in the New Testament, when quoting from the Old Testament always substituted the Greek equivalent of "Lord," and never used the Hebrew "Yehowah."


This is also called the "internal sense." This sense is the one, in the revealing of which the Lord has made His Second Advent. It is contained in the Theological Writings of EMANUEL SWEDENBORG, and was written in the Latin language. It is the Word of the Lord which is fully known in the second or spiritual heaven. It is the Word revealed in a discrete degree lower than the celestial sense, and in a discrete degree higher than the literal sense.

This sense, being spiritual, is chiefly for the use of the angels. (A. C. 5648.) But it is expressly declared that it is also for the use of those on earth who are angelic minded. (A. C. 3016; A. E. 697.) Its first revealing in consecutive order is in the Book entitled Arcana Coelestia, wherein the very words, "The Internal Sense," occur some ninety times as headings to various chapters, beginning with no. 14. At the end of the first chapter of that Book, explaining the internal sense of Genesis i., it is written: "This, then, is the internal sense of the Word, its very essential life, which does not at all appear from the sense of the letter." (A. C. 34. See also A. C. 1540, 3432.)

Further we read: "It has pleased the Lord now to reveal the spiritual sense of the Word, that it may be known where the holiness lies in the Word." (T. C. R. 200; S. S. 18.) Again: "The spiritual sense has been disclosed at this day for the New Church, for the sake of its use in the worship of the Lord. (T. C. R. 869. See also Inv. 44; A. E. 948.) Again: "The Apocalypse is now opened and explained as to its spiritual sense, where Divine Truths are revealed in abundance by the Lord for those who will be of His New Church, which is the New Jerusalem." (A. R. 932 See also A. E., Title.) Again: "This sense does not appear in the literal sense, for it is in it as the soul in the body." (A. R. 1.) Finally: "The New Church is conjoined with heaven through the Divine Truths of the Word, which are in its spiritual sense." (A. E. 950:2. See also S. S. 5.)

As before said, the Theological Writings of EMANUEL SWEDENBORG contain this spiritual sense, so far as it has been revealed for the use of men on earth. These "Writings," as they are generally called, are therefore "The Spiritual Sense" of the Word on earth; and they are this according to the revealed law that "everything external is in itself inanimate, and lives solely from its internal." (A. C. 1094.) Surely from this teaching it follows that everything should he called from that which is within it.

Of course, in saying this, no one would be so foolish as to contend that the mere "verbal statements" of the Writings are the spiritual sense. The "verbal statements are forms in which and by which the spiritual sense has been made known to man. It is the sense within those forms which is the spiritual sense; but because those forms contain that sense, they too are included in the term "spiritual sense," not as to themselves, but from what they embody.

An unmistakable example and confirmation of this is found in the fact that, under the Lord's guidance, and by His command, there were written upon all the Writings in the spiritual world, and also upon two copies of the Brief Exposition in this world (one of which is now in the British Museum) the words, "Hic Liber est Adventus Domini," which is, "This Book is the Advent of the Lord." No book, as a book, could possibly be the "Advent of the Lord," but any and every book which contains solely Divine Truths on the spiritual plane, in which and by which the Lord has come again to the world, may, nay should, be called the "Lord's Advent," as were the Books of the Writings, both in this and in the other world.

According to the same Divine law, the "cup," mentioned in Matthew xxvi. in connection with the Last Supper, is said to signify the same as the wine which it contained, because it contained it.

The only sense given in the Writings is the spiritual sense, with the exception of the small portions of the celestial sense therein found. Their whole reason of existence is to give that sense,--the spiritual sense,--from the Lord to man;--that, and no other. They neither have, nor can have, any "literal sense." They have, for they must have, literal forms, wherewith to express and reveal their internal content; but the form is not in itself a sense, and cannot be. To speak of the "literal sense of the Writings," then, is a misnomer, and to my mind a very misleading statement, for that sense can only be found in the Old and New Testaments, as will soon appear.

Were it true that the Writings, as we read them, have a literal sense, who is to say just where the spiritual sense they contain is? And who is, or can be, capable of interpreting it? Well was it written by one of the Fathers of the Academy of the New Church: "The Writings are themselves given to us as the internal sense of the Word and the Coming of the Lord "Men" should not think that they are reading about the internal sense, but that they are reading the internal sense itself." (REV. J. P. STUART in Words for the New Church, Vol. I, p. 335.)

Another leader of great standing in the Academy, and subsequently in the General Church, wrote: "In every instance (in reading the Writings) we read the internal sense." (REV. C. TH. ODHNER, in New Church Life, 1902, p. 289.) And further he wrote: "This according to the universal law that the containant corresponds to that which it contains."

True indeed it is that the Writings have within them an internal sense, for without that they could not be "truths continuous from the Lord." For the Writings are written according to correspondence,--correspondence of a very different kind from that of the Old and New Testaments,--but still correspondence; and the sense within the Writings is the celestial sense, which is one degree nearer to the Lord than the spiritual sense itself.


This sense is not one of the three senses which are generally spoken of as being in the Word, and therefore our notice of it at this time will be very brief. This sense is also called "the lower sense" (A. C. 4279); and again, "the proximate sense" (A. C. 4690); and yet again, "the natural from the celestial and spiritual." (A. E. 1066.)

The internal historical sense is indeed little known in the church generally, and where known is often taken as being included in the literal sense of the Word. It may be said to be an intermediate between the spiritual and natural senses of the Word. As has been before indicated, this sense refers and is applied to a specific nation mentioned in the Word. (See A. C. 4307-4310.) It is contained in A. C. 4279, 4310, 4281, and in A. E. 1066, but chiefly in The Word Explained, formerly called the Adversaria. In the Arcana Coelestia it is referred to and applied in an intensely interesting manner to the wrestling of Jacob with an angel at Peniel, as recorded in Genesis xxxii. (A. C. 4307-4317.)


This sense is also called "the sense of the letter" (A. E. 1066) and "the natural sense." (T. C. R. 704.) It is the lowest of all the senses of the Word,--the basis and foundation of all Divine Truth; and because it contains within it all the higher senses, it is said to be the holiest of them all.

This sense, however, is twofold, as given in the Word of the Old Testament and in the Word of the New Testament. In this it is circumstanced as are the heavens; for although they are three, yet the lowest heaven is divided into two,--the celestial-natural and the spiritual-natural. The Old Testament may be said to be the sensual and corporeal sense of the Word, and the New Testament the natural sense of the same.

And here, let it be remembered that all the senses of the Word are clouds, veiling the Divine Truth in its descent from the Lord to man; and the only difference is in the density or obscurity of the cloud. The Writings give Divine Truth in luminous clouds; the New Testament gives it in less luminous clouds; while the Old Testament gives it in the density of the cloud; even as it is written in Exodus xix. 9, "And the Lord said unto Moses, Behold, I come to thee in the density of a cloud." Think for a moment of the imagery and language of the Old Testament, the pictures it draws of God, and also of the awful character of the Jewish rites and ceremonies as commanded.

And yet, how truly marvellous is the literal sense of the Word, as made known by Divine Revelation! "Every word in the Word is from the Lord." (A. C. 771.) "Every verse in the letter communicates with some distinct society in the heavens. (T. C. R. 272; S. S. 113; A. R. 200.) "No other historicals are recorded in the Word, and in no other order, and no other words are used to express them, than such as may express these arcana in the internal sense." (A. C. 1468, 4136.) "The very words were spoken into the ears of Moses and the Prophets." (A. C. 7055, 1925.)

Such care has the Lord, in His infinite mercy, taken of the letter of His Word, that it is written: Hence it is that it has been effected, of the Lord's Divine Providence, that the Word, as to the literal sense, from its first revelation, has not been mutilated, not even as to a word, or even a letter, in the original text, for every word is a support, and, is some degree, even each letter." (A. E. 1085. See also L. J. 41; S. S. 13; De Verbo 14. Also for the "Origin of the Sense of the Letter," see Bishop W. F. Pendleton's Topics from the Writings, p. 127.)

The very Books of the Word in the letter are enumerated in the Writings, in A. C. 10325; H. D. 266; W. H. 16.

Again, as was noticed in reference to the spiritual sense of the Word, so let it be seen in relation to the literal sense, it is not the mere form, especially in the New Testament, which is considered, but it is the sense, which is within the form, that is the Word. Hence it is that in A. E. 1066, as in many other passages, stress is put upon the "sense of the letter," and not upon the letter itself, in itself.

The Old and New Testaments contain and reveal the literal sense of the Word, and therefore they are the literal sense of the Word. The Writings contain and reveal the spiritual sense of the Word, and therefore they are the spiritual sense of the Word. In support of this, we would again refer to what has already been said in regard to the inscription upon the Books of the Writings in the spiritual world, and on two copies in this world, "Hic Liber est Adventus Domini."

This essential and vital difference is also beautifully shown in several instances in the explication of portions of the Word and incidents there recorded. Recall to mind what is said as to the garments of the Lord which He wore at His crucifixion--the "raiment" and the "vesture," the outer and inner garments. (John xix. 24; Matthew xxvii. 35.) The outer garment signified the letter, or literal sense of the Word, and the inner represented the spiritual sense. (De Verbo 20; A. E. 64, 195; A. C. 9093, 9942, and 3812.)

Again, recall the angels seen at the head and at the feet in the sepulchre in which the body of the Lord had been laid. Of this the Writings speak as follows: "The angel at the head signified Divine Truth in primaries, and the angel at the feet, Divine Truth in ultimates." (A. E. 687.) Is not a discrete difference indicated here?

Still again, recall that Bethlehem, the birth-place of the Lord's assumed human, was originally called "Ephratah," and this for a spiritual reason, which is revealed in A. E. 700, wherein we are taught that "Ephratah" signifies the natural sense of the Word, and "Bethlehem" the spiritual sense. (See also A. E. 931, 948, 1083.) What can this teaching suggest, in the light of the spiritual law that there is "no ratio between the natural and the spiritual," but that the same name cannot be applied to the two separate things?

Finally, recall the fact that the literal sense of the Word is signified in the Word by a "well," whilst the spiritual sense is signified by a fountain. Shall we not follow the example of the Word itself in the letter, by making and preserving the clearly cut distinction between that which is spiritual and that which is natural, even in the terms we use, as indicating, on the one hand, the spiritual sense of the Word, and, on the other, its natural or literal sense?

In conclusion, as arising out of the consideration thus far presented, reference should be made to what is meant by the phrase in S. S. 50, and in many other passages of the Writings, that "the Doctrine of the Church ought to be drawn from the sense of the letter of the Word, and to be confirmed thereby." (See also T. C. R. 255; De Verbo 15.) In the light of what has already been advanced it surely cannot be seriously contended that by the "letter of the Word" in that passage the Writings are referred to. Who can draw out the internal content of the Word but the Lord, and the Lord alone? The Lord has drawn out the spiritual sense of His Word from the letter, and has given it to mankind in the Writings of the Church. (See De Verbo 47.)

It is written of the Word: "Not even one iota can be opened except by the Lord alone." (Inv. 44.) Again we read: "It is most important, therefore, that a man should study the Word in the sense of the letter; from that sense only is doctrine drawn." (S. S. 56. See also T. C. R. 229, 230.) Again: "From the doctrine of Divine Truth, when confirmed from the sense of tie letter of the Word, the spiritual sense can be seen, but never can the doctrine be seen in the first place from the spiritual sense." (De Verbo 58. See also T. C. R. 229; S. S. 55.) It is also revealed that "all things of the doctrine of the church must be confirmed by the sense of the letter of the Word, that there may be in them sanctity or power; and, moreover, from those books of the Word only in which there is a spiritual sense." (A. E. 816:3; 356:5.) And it is declared that "it is the sense of the letter of the Word by which everything of doctrine on earth must be established. In the sense of the letter is Divine Truth in its fullness and in its holiness." (A. E. 1066.)

Now it is evident that it is only of the letter of the Old Testament and the New Testament that it can possibly be said that "Divine Truth is in its fullness and holiness," and only to the same could the words apply: "From those books of the Word only in which there is a spiritual sense. (A. E. 816. See also De Verbo 15.)

With this brief summary this paper closes: All the Words of the Lord manifest the conjunction of Divine Good and Divine Truth. (See De Verbo 22, 23.) They are each discretely distinct, yet one. They are distinct according to discrete degrees, but united by ever-prevailing correspondence. (A. E. 1080.)

Therefore they are One Word, even as the Lord is One.



(Address to the New Church Club, London, March 9, 1934.)

IN introducing the subject with which I am to deal this evening I propose to offer two brief quotations from the Heavenly Doctrines.

In that Revelation, which we are assured came neither from man nor angel, but from the Lord alone, we are thus instructed, under the heading: "The correspondence of all man's organs and members, both interior and exterior, with the Grand Man, which is heaven." "It is now allowed to relate and describe wonderful things, which, so far as I know, have never yet been known to any one, nor even entered into his mind, namely, that the universal heaven is so formed that it corresponds to the Lord, as to His Divine Human; and that man is so formed, that, as to all things in general and particular in him, he corresponds to heaven, and by means of heaven to the Lord. This is a great mystery, which is now to be revealed." (A. C. 3624.)

And, further, "It is a truth most deeply hidden from the world (and yet nothing is better known in the other life, even to every spirit), that all the parts of the human body have a correspondence with such things as are in heaven, insomuch that there is not even the smallest particle in the body which has not something spiritual and celestial corresponding to it, or, what is the same, which has not heavenly societies corresponding to it....       Hence it is, that the universal heaven is also called the Grand Man. The reason is that the Lord is the only Man, and Heaven represents Him." (A. C. 2996.)

At the end of no less than twenty consecutive Chapters of Genesis (xxiii. xliii.), and in 2740 paragraphs contained in 4 volumes of the Arcana Coelestia, this theme is dealt with most minutely. The importance of this study is also shown in the following statement from the Spiritual Diary, where it is written, "The states of spirits and angels, in all their variety, can in no wise be understood without a knowledge of the human body, for the Kingdom of the Lord is like that of man." (S. D. 1145.)

For his unique mission as the human instrument, Emanuel Swedenborg was well prepared in the Sciences generally, and particularly in those of Anatomy and Physiology. In The Word Explained, he writes as follows: "The Divine Providence governed the acts of my life uninterruptedly from my very youth, and directed them in such a manner as by means of the knowledge of natural things ... to serve as an instrument for opening those things which are hidden interiorly in the Word of God Messiah." (W. E. 2532.)

Indeed, from 1738 to 1743 Swedenborg seems to have done little else than write on Anatomy and Physiology, producing those wondrous Treatises on The Brain, The Bones of the Skull, Economy of the Animal Kingdom, The Animal Kingdom, and The Organs of Generation,--all written and published in these six sears, and all guided by the principles so lucidly expressed in the Spiritual Diary as follows: "I spoke (to Spirits) about the foundations of Truth, that there are two, one from the Word, the other from Nature, or from the Truths of Nature.... In brief nothing can be founded upon scientifics except it be previously founded upon the Word. This must be first; the other is only a confirmation from man's scientifics." (S. D. 5709, 5710.)

Following this Divinely appointed plan, Swedenborg continued all his life to work under the realization of the Heavenly Teaching that, "No one is Man but Jehovah Alone, for "Man" signifies, in its own genuine sense, that "Esse from which Man is," and keeping this fundamental fact in view, he realized that the soul of man--the highest form of creation, is formed by influx from the Lord through the Spiritual Sun and its atmospheres; and that the body is formed, in strict correspondence with the soul, from the Natural Sun, an d the atmospheres of this world.

The human body is thus a gift from the Lord, and is the ultimate in which the Lord dwells with man. Swedenborg was ever conscious that neither the soul nor the body of man can be truthfully said to have life in itself, and, therefore, never does he, in all his voluminous works, ever even hint that either the term "Divine" or "Infinite" rightly predicated of man.

The remembrance of this is so essential, especially at this time, that we are impelled to quote from the Arcana as follows: "In Order that a more distinct idea may be formed of the union of the Lord's Divine Essence with the Human Essence and of the Lord's conjunction with mankind by means of the faith of charity, it may be allowed both here, and in subsequent places to call the former Union, and the latter Conjunction. This appears from the consideration that Jehovah, or the Lord, is life, and His Human Essence was also made life and between life and life there is union. Man, however, is not life, but a recipient of life and when life flows into a recipient of life, there is conjunction; for the former is adapted to the latter, as what is active is to what is passive, or as what is alive in itself to what is dead in itself, which lives therefrom. himself is not alive, but the Lord out of Mercy adjoins him to Himself, and thus makes him live to eternity; and because they thus still remain distinct, the term Conjunction is used." (A. C. 2021.)

From this teaching, therefore, it may be safely said that everything below the Lord Himself is a recipient of life, but in no wise life itself, and therefore it cannot be allowable to predicate of man Divinity, Infinity, or Life Itself. Man, by the Lord's mercy, may be conjoined to his Maker, but never united to Him, as for ever the Lord and man must "remain distinct."

Now, inasmuch as the Lord has created man, and all forms of really useful and orderly life, therefore, we must recognize that all forms of life will partake, in their own especial degree, of His form and image, for He, either directly or indirectly, inflows into them and sustains them. Thus it follows that everything in Nature is in the continual effort after the human form, simply and solely because the Lord Himself is in that form. And, from that fact surely we are ready to receive, and understand the teaching that heaven itself is in the Human Form, and that the whole heaven forms the Grand Man.

At this point, it is very necessary that it should be noted that the correspondence of the Societies in the Grand Man of heaven with the organs and parts of the human body, is not with the organs and parts themselves, as organs and parts, but it is with their functions or uses. This is an important fact to be carefully noted. Use, therefore, is the inner force which unites all things on earth with the things in the heavens.

In the Divine Love and Wisdom we read: "There is nothing in the created universe which has not correspondence with something of man, not only with his affections and their thoughts, but also with the organs and viscera of his body; not with these as substances, but with them as Uses." (D. L. W. 324.)

Use may therefore be said to be the "soul" of every created thing. (Ibid. 310.) Because of this, it is revealed, "Before the organic forms of the body existed, use was, and the use produced and adapted them to itself and not contrariwise. But when the forms have been produced, or the
organs adapted, uses proceed thence, and then it appears as if the forms or organs were prior to the uses; when yet it is not so; for the use inflows from the Lord, and this through heaven according to the order and according to the form in which heaven has been arranged by the Lord, thus according to correspondences. Thus man exists, and thus he subsists." (A. C. 4223.)

This is a matter which needs careful reflection. Use is prior to form. Appearances would lead us to a contrary decision. But appearances deceive. Use is spiritual. Form is material, on the ultimate plane. The forms of anything we see ape comparatively gross. Therefore in the next paragraph it is written: "Organic forms are not only those which appear to the eye, and which can be discovered by microscopes, but there are also organic forms still purer, which cannot possibly be discovered by any eye, whether naked or artificially assisted. The latter forms are more interior as the forms which are of the internal sight, and finally those which are of the understanding. The latter are inscrutable, but still are forms, that is, substances; for it is not possible for any sight, not even the intellectual, to exist, except from something." (A. C. 4224.)

And, now, your attention is invited to examples of the application of the principles involved in the fact that every organ in the human body is a correspondent of some Society in heaven. It is a stupendous field of research in which we are browsing. The area is wide and we can do but little, but it is hoped that the little which may now be done will lead to wider personal study. The present proposal is that some of the many headings of the various Sections of that immortal Book on Heaven and Hell shall be taken, and attention celled to their obvious applications; and to this end we would call particular attention to the well-known fact that the human brain is the most vital part of the human body, and is the veritable homestead of the soul. Our justification for this procedure is found in such direct teaching from the Writings as the following, viz.: "The Brain is formed according to the form of the flow of heaven." (A. C. 4041.) Again, "The universal heaven is so formed as to correspond to the Lord, to His Divine Human; and man is so formed as to correspond with heaven in regard to each and everything in him, and through heaven to the Lord." (A. C. 3624.) Yea, the brief statement is made that "The Brain is heaven." (A. C. 4049.)

In the Book on The Divine Love and Wisdom (365), eight reasons are given showing that the soul is in the Brain. In the Treatise on the Divine Wisdom (V.) it is plainly declared that the Will and the Understanding of man, which are actually substances, are inwardly in the brain,--in the cortical glands.

The fact should also be borne in mind that the brain is the first part of the body to be formed. There was shown to Swedenborg the initial form of man, and it was in the form of a little brain and was "in the order and in the form of heaven." (D. L. W. 432.) Hence, it may he truly said that the human brain is the link between the natural and the spiritual worlds.

With these clearly stated facts in mind we turn to the Book Itself on Heaven and Hell, and at the head of the first Section, paragraphs 2 to 6, we find the following words, viz.: "THE LORD IS THE GOD OF HEAVEN."

Now how is this great fact correspondentially shown in the human body? Does not the brain give a complete analogy, and a satisfactory answer to our enquiry? The brain is the physical creator of the body, and in its work of forming the body, in the foetus, how like it is to the Lord as the Creator. Of the Lord it is written, "When the Lord works He operates not from firsts through mediates into ultimates, but from firsts through ultimates, and thus into mediates. This is why the Lord is called in the Word the 'First' and the 'Last.' (A. E. 1086.)

Just so is it with the action of the brain in the formation of the body; for the brain, as the first, does not first form the heart and lungs, and the viscera generally. No! the brain sends out its fibres immediately to the skin and there forms the beginnings of the arteries and veins, which, after a time, form the heart, and then all together form the other organs and viscera. Even thus does the brain reflect the Lord, as it becomes the all in all of the body.

Section 2, paragraph 7 to 12, has as its caption or heading, "THAT THE DIVINE OF THE LORD MAKES HEAVEN."

Equally so is it the fact that the brain, by means of the animal spirit, makes the body of man; for that vivifying Spirit, is born in the brain, and circulates through the nerves, taking life to every portion the physical frame. No member of the body can live without the action of the brain and of its wondrous spirit; even as heaven depends upon the proceeding Spirit of the Lord,--the Spirit of Truth, in which is the Divine Good.


This great fact is manifested in the body in the nerves which proceed from the brain to all parts of the body. These nerves are divided into two classes, viz.: sensory nerves, or nerves of sensation; and motor nerves, of sensation; and motor nerves, or nerves of motion.

All the nerves go off from the brain and spinal cord in pairs; and it is interesting to note that all nerves proceeding from the brain, cross over as they leave the head, those which go from the right side of the brain govern the left side of the body, and vice versa.

In this fact may be seen a confirmation of the great truth that as man does the truth by living it, that truth as it ascends to the Divine Head, is changed into good. Good in reality is first, but truth is first in time, or apparently.

Further, it may be remarked that from the brain itself twelve pairs of nerves are given off, which may surely be taken as the equivalent in the body, of the spiritual fact that in the formation of the Jewish, the First Christian, and the New Church, there were twelve Tribes then, twelve Apostles, and that there were twelve Foundations for the Holy City.

Section 4, paragraphs 20 to 28, is headed by the statement that "HEAVEN IS DIVIDED INTO TWO KINGDOMS."

Does not this statement immediately call to mind the physical fact that there are two brains, the cerebrum, or larger brain, in the front of the skull, and the cerebellum, or smaller brain at the back of the head? The larger brain is the seat of the Understanding (C. L. 444; D. L. W. 384) and it governs man's voluntary actions. The cerebellum, or smaller brain, is the seat of the Will, (Inter. 13; A. C. 4052), and this governs all the involuntary actions of the body, such as the beating of the heart, etc. In the Heavenly Doctrines the cerebellum is likened to the Divine Providence, for it never sleeps, but goes on in its functions from before birth until death.

The larger brain is divided into two halves--longitudinally--but the smaller brain is not divided, mirroring forth another spiritual fact that truths are divided, and many, yet good is one.

Section 5, paragraphs 29 to 40 is prefaced by: "THERE ARE THREE HEAVENS."

This is represented in the human body, when a more general view is taken of the brain, inasmuch as there are in reality three brains, viz. the cerebrum, the cerebellum, and the medulla oblongata, or top of the spinal cord.

Herein we find the likeness to the constituent forms of the Divine Trinity, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The cerebellum representing the Divine Love, the Will in man, and the celestial the cerebrum representing the Divine Wisdom, the Understanding in man, and the spiritual; and the medulla representing the Divine Use; and, in man, actions and living, and also the natural.

Section 6, paragraphs 41 to 50, comes under the heading that "THE HEAVENS CONSIST OF INNUMERABLE SOCIETIES."

This wonderful fact is mirrored forth in both brains, the cerebrum and the cerebellum, inasmuch as the larger brain consists of innumerable glands,--the cortical glands and the smaller brain is made up of innumerable fibres.

It is a most interesting fact mentioned in the Writings that the cortical glands of the cerebrum are as numerous as are the angelic societies in the heavens, which are countless; and that those glands are in the same order as are the societies of the angels; while the innumerable fibres of the smaller brain may be compared to the Spiritual Truths end Goods of the Word. (D. L. W. 366.)

Further, there is incorporated in the Heavenly Doctrines the physical fact, that the cortical glands of the larger brain are the initial forms from which are brought forth and produced all things of the body, from the head to the soles of the feet.

Time, which rightly limits this paper, compels us to pass over the next four Sections of the Book Heaven and Hell, and therefore we next take Section 11, which consists of paragraphs 78 to 86. This section is really the sum of the four preceding ones, and is headed, "THAT IT IS FROM THE DIVINE HUMAN OF THE LORD THAT HEAVEN, AS A WHOLE, AND IN PART REFLECTS MAN."

Now, the Divine Human is the form of the Infinite Divine. Neither man nor angel can approach or see the Divine, in its naked infinity. The Lard, by His Glorification, did not pass into an invisible Divine. Had that been the case He would have been cut off from His creatures even in the heavens.

Hence it is revealed that: "No angel in the heavens ever conceives of the Divine as being in any other than the human form." (H. H. 79.)

It is gloriously true that to His New Church the Lord reveals Himself as a Visible God, not as to His Infinite and Invisible Divine in Itself, but He is now to be seen and worshipped in His Divine Human, which also is Infinite and one with the Father.

How, then, does the composition of the human body "reflect" this great fact? The answer comes from that which was made known through Emanuel Swedenborg, viz. that the first form of all material forms is "The Most Simple Fibre." It is by the fasciculation, or bundling together of these simple fibres that the cortical glands of the brain are formed. Fibres from these glands produce all parts of the brain. Swedenborg asserts that the whole human body is one vast weaving of fibres originating in glands, and this even to the very layers of the bones.

Aristotle also taught this, which is in contradistinction to the theories of modern Anatomists and Physiologists who claim that the body is built up of cells. Yet of these "Cells" they have no definite comprehension.

This belief that the whole body is a weaving of fibres receives confirmation in the Writings, for in A. C. 9683, and in S. D. 5781, the fact is stated that every organ and viscus of the body receives fibres from both the larger and smaller brains.

In the light of this teaching may it not be rightly claimed that the human brain is the most representative of spiritual things?

By the brain is the world in which we now live linked with the world unto which we are hastening for conscious existence there. By immediate influx the Lord flows into our wills, and thus into our smaller brain; by mediate influx through the heavens the Lord enters our Understandings and thus into our larger brain; and from, and through these two, the flow of life, from its one Divine Fountain, is carried all over the body by means of the nerves, making, in truth and fact, as far as we live the regenerate life, the relation between God and man to be that "In Him we live, and move, and have our being. (Acts xvii. 28.)

We have thus far intentionally given the greater part of our present effort to dealing with the brain as illustrating that the human body, as to all its organs, corresponds to heaven, because the brain is that part of man's organism in which soul and body meet in fullest measure.

In doing this, however we have not been unmindful of the fact that the whole of the body has its correspondence with the soul, and with the whole spiritual world. It is impossible that we can give, in equal detail, an account of the other organs of our physical frame. We desire rather to indicate briefly, than to explain the correspondence of some of the major viscera.

And first let us notice that the whole body is divided into three portions--Head, Trunk, and Limbs, corresponding to the Divine Trinity, the three heavens, and the three senses of the Divine Word.

After the brain, the first organs which claim our attention are the HEART AND THE LUNGS.

The heart corresponds to the Will of man, as the receptacle of his affection and love; while the lungs correspond to the Understanding and the faculty of thinking and reasoning. In the Doctrine of Faith it is written, "In the spiritual world every one is known in respect to the quality of his faith by his mere breathing, and in respect to that of his charity, by the way his heart beats." (Faith 19.)

Because of this correspondence of heart and lungs, the Church of the Lord is declared to be as the heart of the human race. (A. C. 637.) Further, it is written: "The Church is further constituted like man in this respect that there are with him two sources of life, the heart and lungs. It is well known that the first principle of his life is the heart and the second principle of his life the lungs, and that each and all things of man live from these two fountains of life. The heart of the Grand Man, that is to say, of heaven and the Church, is constituted of those who are in love to the Lord and in charity towards the neighbour. But the lungs in the Grand Man, that is, in heaven and the Church, are constituted by those who from the Lord are in charity towards the neighbour, and from this in faith." (A. C. 9276.)

Leaving the realm of the thorax or chest, and passing into that of the abdomen, all will agree that the STOMACH is a very important organ. Into this organ of the body all food is received, and what a mixture must be therein! The stomach corresponds to the World of Spirits, into which all pass when they die. (A. C. 5174.) Again, what a mixture! Spirits may remain here from a month or so to 30 years; and those here are like those in the Lower Earth--neither in heaven nor in hell (A. C. 5392); but are preparing by the process of Vastation for an eventual residence either in heaven or hell.

Next, in our review we pass to the LIVER. This is the largest gland of the body, weighing from three to foul pounds. Its use is to prepare good blood. It selects and strains from the blood the purer portion which then goes to the heart by the hepatic vein and the vena cava. (See A. K. 204-211.)

The liver corresponds to a large province of the spiritual world in which newly arrived Spirits are prepared for heaven. (A. C. 10031, 10073; S. D. 1008.)

The BILE which is secreted by the liver for the purposes of purification, corresponds to those who have despised spiritual and heavenly things. See S. D. 1012-14.)

Closely following the liver, the next organs we notice are THE TWO KIDNEYS. These are two glandular organs the use of which is to filter the blood, by expelling the stale serum from the arterial blood. The kidneys are to the fluids of the body what the intestines are to the solids. (A. C. 5380; S. D. 999-1004.)

In A. C. 10032 we are told that the kidneys denote interior truth which explores; and in H. H. 96 and 97, it is stated that, those are in the kidneys of the Grand Man who are in truth which specifically examines, separates and corrects.

And, now we reach the BONES and the SKINS.

It is claimed that in the different combinations of the bones of the human body are to be found all the laws of Architecture and Dynamics. They are the rugged outworks of the physical frame.

In the Spiritual Diary, it is revealed that "In the other life, those correspond to the bones, who have studied various sciences but performed no use by their means; such as those who have studied mathematics merely to invent rules, and have not paid regard to use "; and it is added that, "It is plain, that the greatest part of the learned within the Church, become bones. They are those who are sensual in the last degree; and in this state also at the present day, is the Church. Hence its end. (S. D. 5141.)

The body is enclosed by two skins, the outer skin is called the cuticle or epidermis, and the inner or true skin is called the dermis.

In the consideration of the skins given in both the scientific and Sacred Books of the Church the Doctrine of Ultimates is most beautifully portrayed. (See The Soul p. 33.)

All in the skin of the Grand Man are in very external states, for the skin corresponds to truths in ultimates. It is said that "the Societies to which the cuticles correspond are in the entrance to heaven; and to them is given a perception of the quality of the spirits who crowd to the first entrance, whom they either reject or admit; so that they may be called the entrances or thresholds of heaven." (S. D. 5553.)

In a reference given in the Spiritual Diary to the external skin, there is that which shows how the Divine of the Lord is in Firsts and Lasts, for the statement is made that "The external skin communicates by fibres and vessels with the interiors and inmosts of the brain, from whence come its sensations." The striking passage then continues, "The skin imbibes also the most subtile things of the world, and transmits them to the brain." (S. D. 1738.)

In conclusion, we began with the brain as an example of the Correspondence of the body and its organs to the societies of the heavens, and found that in the formation of the wondrous physical garment of the soul, the fibres went down at once to the very skin, as from Firsts to ultimates, and, from the passage last quoted, we learn that from the skin "the most subtile things from the world" are taken back to the brain. The circle is thus complete.

The body is fashioned after the pattern of heaven, and thus in the image of God.

The body is thus a marvellous mechanism. The Lord is the Doer of it all. 'Tis wondrous in our eyes, and all that is left for us to say, after the study, is, "O LORD, OUR LORD, HOW MAGNIFICENT IS THY NAME IN THE WHOLE EARTH." (Psalm viii. 9.)




(Preached at Michael Church, December 31, 1892.)

THE art of writing was given by the Lord to man for the sake of the Divine Word. For the nature of men on this earth, after the decline of the Most Ancient Church, necessitated a written Revelation. No other earth, in the universe of earths, needs such an accommodation, for the explicit teaching of the Arcana Coelestia is, "In every other earth Truth Divine is revealed through spirits and angels by word of mouth." (A. C. 9358.) The inhabitants of one of the other earths expressed great surprise to the instrument of the Lord's Second Coming that such an art as writing could exist on earth, as it is "utterly unknown" in other earths, and the conclusion as to why that art was necessary on this globe, is thus expressed in the Gospel of the Second Advent: "They comprehended that on this earth, where corporeal and terrestrial things are so much loved, Divine things from heaven could not otherwise flow in and be received, and that it would be dangerous for persons in such circumstances to discourse with angels." (E. U. 155.)

Thus a written Revelation is necessary for the inhabitants of this earth, and, foreseeing this, the Lord caused the art of writing to be discovered and developed by man, so that His Word might be with the inhabitants of earth in a permanent and tangible form.

The use of writing is the presentation and preservation of affection, desire, and thought. The written Word presented to, and preserved for, man the Love and Wisdom of his Heavenly Father; and writing, as employed in official, commercial, and social life, is for the end of presenting to, and preserving for, man the desires and thoughts of his fellow men. When expressed in writing, a man's desire and thought assume a tangible, and, comparatively speaking, a permanent form.

Now, because of its use, writing corresponds to the implantation in the life of man of those things which make his nature and character. This is very clearly taught in the Apocalypse Explained as follows: "'To write upon one' means to implant in the life, because to write is to commit to paper anything from the memory, thought, or mind, that is to be preserved; in the spiritual sense, therefore, it signifies that which is to endure in man's life, be inscribed on it, and implanted in it. Thus the natural sense of this expression is turned into a spiritual sense; for it is natural to write upon paper, or in a book, but it is spiritual to inscribe on the life, which is done when anything is implanted in faith and love, since love and faith constitute man's spiritual life. Because 'to write' signifies to implant in the life, it is said of Jehovah or the Lord that 'He writes,' and that 'He has written in a book,' meaning that which is inscribed by the Lord on man's spirit, that is, on his heart and soul, or what is the same, on his love and faith." (A. E. 222.)

Thus to write is to implant in, and to inscribe on, the life. And this teaching of the spiritual sense of the Word is confirmed in the letter by such passages as Jeremiah xxxi. 33, "I will give My law in the midst of them, and will write it on their heart."

To "give My law" means to cause Divine Truths to be known by man, and to "write it on their heart" is to cause those truths to be impressed upon the love of man, so that they would be reproduced in the actions and deeds of daily life. This the Lord does to all who are of His Church, thus to all who become regenerate, for the words thus explained are a portion of what is declared to be "the covenant" which the Lord "will make with the house of Israel."

Similar also is the teaching of the Apocalypse in which it is declared that none shall enter into the New Jerusalem save those "who are written in the Lamb's Book of Life." (Apoc. xxi. 27.) The "Book of Life" is the Word, and they "are written in the Book of Life" upon whose lives the
precepts of the Word are written, by being lived and done.

When this teaching is remembered, how pregnant with meaning do the words of the text become: "What I have written, I have written." For these are the words of all, from necessity; they express that which is the outcome of human existence, nay that which is life itself, for inasmuch as one has lived, one has written on the interiors of his mind those things which have made his life. Hence the language of every one, whether he knows it or not, is "What I have written, I have written."

In the Arcana Coelestia, it is written, "Man has, as it were, two books, in which are written all the things he has thought and done. These books are his two memories, the exterior and the interior." (A. C. 9386.) Thus every man is the faithful chronicler of his own history, the impartial recorder of his own life, and thus the honest preparer of that account by which, after death, he will be judged. The very laws of his being make him an impartial and honest historian of his own life. For his ruling love dictates the writing, inasmuch as it animates his life, and whatever has once been written can never be blotted out, never erased, to all eternity. By regeneration the pages of his book of life can be made to tell a better tale as the record advances, but nothing once written can ever be defaced or removed from the fateful page. "What I have written, I have written."

In the Apocalypse Revealed, it is said of the interiors of man's mind, "They are called books, because upon the interiors of every one's mind are written all the things which he has thought, intended, spoken and done, in the world, from the will or love, and thence from the understanding and faith. All these things are written upon the life of every one so exactly that absolutely nothing is wanting." (A. R. 867.)

As has already been declared in the very words of the Heavenly Doctrines, the books of a man's life are "his two memories." Only from Divine Revelation can men know that he has two memories. Man knows from experience that he has one memory, but he does not recognize that he has an interior memory as well as an exterior, because while he lives on earth the interior memory "acts almost as a one with the exterior." (A. C. 2470.) The things of the exterior memory are the vessels into which the things of the interior memory flow, and, during man's earthly life, these seem as but one. But not only is it a fact that man has two memories, but they are most distinct from each other.

The exterior memory, which is the one of which man is conscious while on earth, consists of, or contains, all the mere words and expressions of languages, all the impressions of merely natural objects, and of natural facts and knowledges. This exterior memory, which is also called the natural, or corporeal, memory, resides in the Limbus, which is composed of the purest substances of nature, and which is the cutaneous envelope of man's spiritual body after death. (T. C. R. 103.) It is indeed the eternal and indestructible basis of man's spiritual constitution, always remaining in this world for it is formed of the purest substances in nature, and yet it is the accompaniment, the base of the soul of man to all eternity. All things enter the external memory by means of the senses, and thus all things which make that memory are impressed upon the Limbus of man's body, and remain with him to eternity.

The interior or spiritual memory consists of, or contains, all things which have been rationally received, and which have been received from desire, thought about, and done. It consists of affection and thought. It is man's book of life, for it holds everything which a man has really desired, willingly reflected upon, and freely done. Man may hear much to which he would rather not listen, see much from which he turns away, and may even do under pressure that which he hates. All this enters his exterior memory, but not his interior memory, for he does not will it, does not willingly think it, and of himself does not do it.

Concerning the interior memory of man, his real memory, the memory of his character, his life, listen to that which the Lord has revealed in the Arcana Coelestia, and which is of utmost practical value and import. It is written, "Whatsoever things a man hears and sees, and is affected with, are insinuated, as to ideas and ends, into his interior memory, without his being aware of it, and there remain, so that not a single one is lost, although the same things are obliterated in the exterior memory. The interior memory therefore is such, that there are inscribed in it all the particular things, yea, the most particular, which man has at any time thought, spoken, and done, yea, which have appeared to him as a shadow, with the most minute details, from his earliest infancy to extreme old age. Man has with him the memory of all these things when he comes into the other life, and is successively brought into all recollection of them; this is the Book of his Life, which is opened in the other life, and according to which he is judged. Man can scarcely believe this but still it is most true. All his ends, which had been to him hidden in obscurity, and all that he had thought, and likewise all that he had spoken and done, from those ends, are recorded, to the smallest detail, in that Book, that is, in the interior memory, and are made manifest before the angels, as in clear day, whensoever the Lord permits it." (A. C. 2474.)

Such, then, is man's interior memory which, in comparison with the exterior memory "is as many myriads to one, or as what is full of light, to what is dark." (A. C. 2473.) Spirits speak from this interior memory only, hence they have a "universal language," (A. C. 2472) which all come into after death, without instruction, for it is the language of thought, but in this world man speaks from his exterior memory, thus in the language of words, and hence is only understood by his fellow-man when the two know the same language.

Still, while the exterior memory,--the memory of words, sensual knowledge and objects,--is peculiarly the memory for this world, yet men takes both memories with him into the other world at death; for it is written, "Man after death does not lose the smallest portion of anything which has been in his memories, either in his exterior, or in his interior memory, so that nothing can be conceived so small and trifling, which man does not have with him." (A. C. 2475.)

Though man takes his exterior memory with him into the other world, he does not use it the except for very exceptional purposes by especial permission of the Lord. He does not need it there; the things that are in it are not of that purer world, and therefore, together with the limbus which is its dwelling-place, it becomes quiescent, for were it to be active it would withdraw the spirit from conscious life in the other world, and from the uses which he performs there. So serious would the constant use of the exterior memory in the other world be, that it is revealed: "If spirits were allowed to the exterior memory, the human race would perish, for every man is ruled by the Lord through spirits and angels, and if spirits from the exterior memory should flow into man, it would not be possible for man to think from his own memory, but from that of spirits, thus that man would no longer enjoy his own life, and his own independence, but would be obsessed." (A. C. 2477.) For the sake of convincing some spirits of the evils they had done in the body, but which they denied, their exterior memory was opened, and then "every particular was recalled. Even the memorandum books, in which these spirits had made notes of their actions, were opened and read before them page by page. (H. H. 462. See also A. C. 2483.) Thus are the wicked self-convicted and self-condemned.

In the light of this teaching, with what irresistible force do the words of the Lord, in the work on Heaven and Hell come to the thoughtful mind, "Let no man therefore believe, that there is anything, which man has thought in himself, or done in secret, that can be hidden after death; but let him believe, that each and everything then will be laid open as in clear day." (H. H. 463.)

Thus both memories with man after death, but only the interior memory is active, for only in it are those things which have been loved by man, and thus been made a part of his very character. The interior memory is thus his book of life, from d by which he is judged, and in which is most faithfully recorded all and everything man has heard, seen, spoken, and done, from desire and free action. For in that world "There is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; neither hid, that shall not be known." (Luke xii. 2.)

The contents of those books,--man's exterior and interior memory--are known fully only to the Lord, not even to the man himself, much less to his fellow men. Thus only the Lord can judge man, even as it is written in the Arcana Coelestia, "Every one carries along with him into the other life, the memory of his actions, thus the book of his life, but none but the Lord alone can judge anyone according to his actions; for all actions proceed from final causes, which lie deeply concealed within; according to those causes man is judged, no one knows them but the Lord, wherefore judgment belongs to Him alone." (A. C. 8620.)

And, that in judgment much more than the deeds of man has to be considered is seen from the further statement of the same Book, where it is written, "Deeds have their quality from the thoughts, and thoughts have their quality from the ends." (A. C. 2488.) The Lord regards the ends of a man's life, He alone can see those ends, and therefore He alone can rightly judge man as expressed in the letter of the Word. "The Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart." (1 Sam. xvi. 7.)

In conclusion, though man can always take up the words of the text, and say, "What I have written, I have written for the record of his life is always what he himself has made it, in freedom, by desire, thought, and deed,--still there are especial times in the course of adult life when man should very thoughtfully consider the nature of that record which he has thus far written in indelible characters.

Such an especial time should always be found in the preparation which should be made for partaking of the Holy Supper. To rightly engage in this most holy sacrament man should truly and thoroughly examine himself not only as to outward actions, but also as to hidden end and intention. He should seek to know as far as it is permitted him to know, what it is that he has written in the two books, the two memories of his being. There can be no repentance without self-examination, and without repentance there can be no regeneration and without regeneration no heaven, hence, how all important that man should seek to know as much as he may know of that which is referred to when he declares "What I have written, I have written."

As the words occur in the text they are the reply given by Pilate to the Jews, who, referring to the title Pilate had written upon the cross, said to him, "Write not, The King of the Jews; but that He said, I am King of the Jews. Pilate answered, What I have written, I have written."

Pilate was a Gentile, not a Jew. As a Gentile he represents those in simple good, though in ignorance of the Word. The Writings of the Church declare that, "From the question of Pilate, 'What is Truth?' it is evident that he understood that the Word called Truth a King; but, because he was a, Gentile, and knew nothing from the Word he could not be instructed that Divine Truth is from the Lord and that He is Divine Truth." (A. E. 31.)

Thus Pilate wrote what he did in acknowledgment that Truth was called by the Lord a "King." By King is meant the Lord as to Divine Truth.

Man writes in his books, his two memories, that the Lord is King, when he makes the Lord's Truth the supreme ruler of his life, by conforming all the actions of his life to the Divine teachings of the Lord's Truth as revealed.

May our lives be so written, that as day by day, and year by year, we add continually unto the record of our Book of Life, we may write a history which in the great day of account after death, may be found to show above all other statements, the glorious fact that Truth has been our King, that the Lord has been our freely accepted Sovereign and Ruler, so, when judged for our eternal dwelling place, we shall, by the Lord's mercy, rejoice and be glad to say, "What I have written, I have written." AMEN.



(Preached at Michael Church, June 3, 1893.)



THE one end which the sincere Christian has ever in view is that he may shun all evils as sins against God. He desires to reach that state in which he really holds all evils inwardly in aversion, that is, that he hates evils because he knows that they are contrary to the will of the Lord and injurious to the well-being of the neighbour. The letter of the Divine Word shows very plainly that the duty of those who are regenerating is to come into a state in which they hold evils in aversion, for the Divine Command is "Ye that love the Lord, hate evil." (Ps. xcvii. 10.)

In the Doctrine of Life for the New Jerusalem no point is more continually or more clearly insisted upon than that all evil must be shunned as a sin against God, or it is not really shunned at all. Unless evils are inwardly held in aversion, that is, are inwardly hated and detested, they are not really relinquished, but are only removed from the gaze of men. They are thus inwardly loved, and they would inevitably be done, if external restraints were removed. For a wicked man will shun evils from policy and because they are hurtful, but only a genuine Christian will shun them as sins against God, and thus shun them interiorly. The Sermon on the Mount, as recorded in Matthew, chapters v. to vii., plainly urges the absolute need of inwardly shunning evils, and the need of removing them from the heart or will, for unless they are so removed, they are not really removed from the man, as the man is his will, or love, or heart.

Hence, then, the height of Christian duty is to hold evils inwardly in aversion, to loathe them as being contrary to heaven and thus from hell. But, just in proportion as this duty is realized as the great necessity of a truly religious life, it will be seen that it can only be accomplished by severe combat, and by constant struggle. This is indeed the teaching of the text, "Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit."

To see this teaching rationally, however, one has to go back to the primary teaching of the regenerate life, viz., that man's own life is entirely evil. This teaching is unpalatable to the natural mind of man, for that mind likes to believe that man has some good of his own, and that he is not, of himself, nothing but evil. True it is, that every man has within him. Remains of good, but they are not the man's own, they are no part of the man's own nature. They are of the Lord in man, they belong to the Lord, and they are given to man, or are implanted in man, that they may induce him to turn from his own evil nature, and thus seek after the higher life which comes into man just in proportion as he shuns evils as sins against God and thus rids himself of them.

It is clearly taught that with man evil is "the first root of his life," and thus it necessarily follows that man can only come to hold his own nature, or his evils, in aversion after severe combat with them. All his own delights are in his evils, of himself he continually inclines towards them, and thus he cannot leave them so completely as to loathe them without a severe struggle. In this struggle lies the whole labour of regeneration. For this reason the Church on earth is called the Church militant, because every man in whom the Church is has to be in continual warfare against the devil, which is hell, and this continual warfare, or combat, is generally called temptation. Temptation, therefore, is the only means of reaching heaven, because it is the only means by which man learns to cease to do evil, to cease from himself, and so thoroughly to shun evils as sins as to hold them inwardly in aversion.

Now, only those who are being regenerated are permitted to come into interior or spiritual temptations. There would be no useful end in permitting others to come into such temptations for they would be sure to fall when tempted, and he who falls in temptation makes his spiritual state worse than it was before the temptation came to him.

It is written in the New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine, "No one can be tempted unless he is in the acknowledgment of truth and good and in an affection for them, because otherwise there is no combat; for the spiritual does not then act against the natural, wherefore there is no question about rule." (H. D. 197.) It is further written, in the same paragraph, "Wherefore few at the present day come into spiritual temptations."

In order that temptations may be of use to man he must have some conscience, he must be in truths from the Word, for as is expressly stated in the Writings of the Church, "Truth is the first thing of combat." (H. D. 198.)

In the various sects of the vastated First Christian Church, next to nothing is known concerning real spiritual temptations. What the world generally regards as temptations are simply natural distresses in regard to those things which relate more especially to life in this world. These distresses may be keenly felt by those who are not in good and truth, but they are not spiritual distresses, for these are of the spiritual mind, and are possible only to those who have faith in the Lord, and are striving under the influence of spiritual truth to become regenerate. Spiritual and natural distresses are distinguished by this, that natural distress is concerned with worldly things, and with life in this world, while spiritual distress is concerned with spiritual things, or with life in the other world. (H. D. 189.)

It is written in The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine, as follows: "Since faith at the present day is rare, because there is no charity,--for the Church is at its end,--therefore there are only a. few who are admitted into any spiritual temptations. Hence it is that it is scarcely known what these temptations are, and what their use is." (H. D. 193.) Inasmuch as temptations are the only means by which man can come into that state in which he interiorly holds evils in aversion, and thus into a state of salvation, it is well that the subject of temptations, their origin, their nature, how they occur and when, and what is the end of their permission, should be briefly considered.

With every one in this world there are both good and evil spirits. These attendant spirits enter into the memory of the man; forth his evils and urge the man to develop and cultivate them, end the good spirits bring forth his goods, his good desires and thoughts, and urge him to cultivate and develop them. Man is in the midst, as it were, between these two opposing forces, and thus in his hands is the balance, and he has the power of deciding which shall be his leaders, the good spirits or the evil, for the Lord ever holds man in equilibrium so that he has power, while on earth, of turning either towards heaven or towards hell.

So intimately indeed are the spirits who are attendant upon men connected with him, that they know no otherwise than that the things of the man's memory are their own. It is not permitted them to know the man on whom they wait, yea, the greatest care is taken by the Lord to prevent this, for evil spirits burn so much with the desire to destroy man both as to soul and body that if they knew the man with whom they were they would effect his destruction, for they would then speak with him and acquire a fearful and direct influence over him. But, not knowing the man upon whom they wait, but being under the impression that the things they find in the man's memory are their own, they cherish those things, and thus unconsciously cherish the man himself, inasmuch as his thought and desires are the man. (H. H. 292.)

Unless man had communication with spirits he could not possibly live, for he receives influx from the other world by which he lives, through the spirits who are attendant upon him. They are in his thoughts and affections, for these make the man and give him his life. The spirits with man are changed according to the change of his affections and thoughts. The angels with man are especially associated with the good ends or purposes of his life, and they ever seek to quicken these within him. The good spirits attendant upon man are adjoined to him by the Lord, but the evil spirits which wait upon man are invited by the man himself, according to the nature and quality of his own life, his proprium. It is written in Heaven and Hell; "Spirits who communicate with hell are also adjoined to man, because man is born into evils of every kind, and hence his first life is entirely from evils; therefore unless spirits of quality similar to his own were adjoined to him, he could not live, nor could he be withdrawn from his evils, and be reformed. On this account he is kept in his own life by evil spirits, and withheld from it by good spirits. He is also held in equilibrium by both, and because he is in equilibrium he is in his freedom, and can be withdrawn from evils and inclined to good; for, in freedom, good may be implanted in him, which would not otherwise be possible; but freedom cannot be given to man unless spirits from hell act upon him the one part, and spirits from heaven on the other; and unless he is kept in the midst." (H. H. 293.)

Thus, then, all temptations are from hell, for the Lord tempts no man, neither do the angels. But the hells are in the constant effort to tempt man for they continually excite a man's evils, and the good spirits and angels as continually seek to withhold him from his evils; thus arise those combats which are necessary for growth in the regenerate life. In temptations man's spiritual life is really at stake, for the devils seek to destroy all that is good and true in him, and therefore seek to destroy the very life of his soul. To use the very words of the Writings, "The dominion of good over evil or of evil over good, is contended for in temptations. The evil which is desirous of ruling is in the natural or external man; and the good in the spiritual or internal man. If evil prevails, the natural man rules; if good, then the spiritual man." (H. D. 190.)

But whilst all temptations are from hell, yet it is an ever glorious truth that it is the Lord alone who fights for man, and delivers him, if man but trusts in Him, and follows His guidance. The Lord is in the truths from which man fights, for it is from truths from the Word that man can alone successfully fight in temptations. The Lord is with him in these truths, and the Lord fights and overcomes for him. In the very darkness of the temptations it seems to the man as if the Lord was absent from Him, but that is but an appearance, for the truth, as revealed, is that "the Lord is then more present." (H. D. 200.) The temptations from which man gets the greatest benefit, go on even to despair. The man feels that it is no use trying any more, he has tried all he can, and seems to get no better. The Lord seems gone from him, and he appears to be left as a prey to the lusts of his unregenerate heart, and to the falsities of his unreformed mind. But, no, the Lord is nearest to man, when He seems most absent. This is the Lord's own teaching, for in the Arcana Coelestia it is written, "The time of combat is the time of the Lord's operation " (A. C. 63); and in Isaiah it is also Divinely declared, "When thou passest through the waters I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned: neither shall the flame kindle upon thee." (Isaiah xliii. 2.) Thus the Lord is ever near to man, nearest to him when he most needs Him, and it is the Lord alone who fights for man during his temptations, and enables him to conquer.

These things ape effected through temptations when man conquers in them: his internal spiritual man is opened, the external is brought into subjection to the internal, the loves of self and the world are quieted, the Lord is enabled to flow down into man through his internal into his external, a greater enlightenment of truth comes into his mind, and the man is admitted, as to his spirit, into Angelic Societies, and thus into heaven. All these are the results of temptations successfully endured and fought, and the joy arising from success in temptation is unspeakable and never ending. As to freedom from the power of hell, when man conquers in temptation, it is thus written, "Through the temptations in which a man conquers, evil spirits are deprived of the power of operating further against him.... The hells do not dare to rise up against those who have suffered temptations and have conquered." (H. D. 199.)

No one need fear temptations, for, in the merciful Providence of the Lord, it is provided that none shall suffer temptations greater than he can bear. The very fact that the temptation is permitted is in itself proof that the one tempted can conquer if he will, for the Lord never permits the temptation to come until the one enduring it has the means of conquering, if he will but use them. What a comfort lies in this teaching of the Lord's own revelation. Further, it is written concerning the combat of temptation, "This combat is not grievous, except with those who have unloosed every restraint upon their lusts, and have intentionally indulged them; and also with those who have obstinately rejected the holy things of the Word and of the Church. To others it is not grievous; let them resist evils in intention only once in a week, or twice in a month, and they will perceive a change." (Life 97.) And, again, in the Work on Heaven and Hell, "It is not so difficult as many suppose to live the life which leads to heaven." (H. H. 528.)

Let no one, therefore, lose heart when they are called to pass into the shade of temptation. It is the only way to the realms of the blest, for it is only by temptation that man, assisted by the Lord, can die to himself and to evil, which is the death which must ever precede the life of heaven. It is to the death of the natural man, with its loves of self and the world, that the Lord refers in the text, "Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit."

These words are thus explained in the Apocalypse Explained: "Jesus said, 'Except a grain of wheat fall into the ground and die, it remaineth alone; but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit'; it is similar also with man, who as to his body must die, that he may rise again; and also as to his proprium, which in itself is infernal, for unless he die as to both, man has not the life of heaven." (A. E. 899.)

What a beautiful comparison, based upon correspondence, is here brought before the reflecting mind. As the grain of wheat cannot propagate and produce fruit, unless it dies, that from its inmost the little sprout may come forth after the death of the surrounding parts; and as man's spirit cannot go entirely into the other world and breathe its freer air, until man dies as to the body; so neither can the soul of man rise in the glorious freedom of the regenerate life, until it has first died as to the old man, died as to the loves of self and the world, died as to its first life of inherent evil. Except a man so die he must ever abide alone, without the conscious presence of the Lord; but if he die to sin, then he shall live in justice and peace, live in that only true life, the life of heaven.

To gain this life of heaven man must shun all evils as sins against God, shun them in such a manner as genuinely to hold them in interior aversion, and he can do this only by means of temptations, in which he meets his evils, and by the help of the Lord, fights against them and conquers them. May the Lord help us individually so continually to fight against our evils that we may realize the teaching of His Word, as it declares, "That no one can shun evils as sins so as inwardly to hold them in aversion, except by combats against them. And, "Amen, Amen, I say unto you, except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit." AMEN.



(Preached at Michael Church, February 19, 1898.)


THE term "neighbour" is a very comprehensive one. By the world generally the term is used in a very restricted sense.

To the New Church alone is given the knowledge that the term "neighbour" embraces, or rather, may embrace, everyone from the man himself, through society, the country, the Church, the Kingdom of the Lord, even to the Lord. For, in the highest sense of the word the Lord Himself is the greatest neighbour. Yea, considered in a spiritual manner, the neighbour is not a person, but a principle, just as a man is not, truly speaking, a man, or a mere human form, but he is a use. This is most clearly shown in the Apocalypse Explained. "The neighbour in the spiritual sense is not every man, but it is that which is in man; if this be truth, sincerity and right, and the man is loved on account of these, the neighbour is loved." (A. E. 204.)

Briefly put, the neighbour may be said to be, in an ascending series, a man's self, not in the sense of his proprium but in the sense of his use, next a fellow man, then a society of men, then the country, and, after this, the Church, the Lord's Kingdom, and, finally, the Lord Himself. And in any or in all these forms the neighbour is to be loved, for a duty to them all is embraced in the command contained in the text "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself."

It is the duty of every man to love himself in the sense of so caring for himself that he can best fulfil his use in life. It is right for him to seek for office, honour, dignity, wealth, and all other things obtainable by justice, right, and truth, the end or purpose being that in the positions or possessions sought after, a man may best minister to the common good. Thus a man must love the good and the truth he is enabled to have and to do, for that is the Lord in him, and with him; and in all things, and in everyone the Lord alone is worthy of love. So, in his fellow man, individually or collectively, a man truly loves the neighbour when he loves and ministers to the good in the individual, or in a collective body of individuals.

For the purposes of the present study, however, the Divine command "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself" will be considered in its application to the country as the neighbour.

It is written in the Arcana Coelestia "One's country is more a neighbour than a society, because it is like a parent; for it is the place of a man's birth, it nourishes him and protects him from injuries. Good is to be done to one's country from love according to its necessities, which principally respect its sustenance, its civil life, and its spiritual life. He who loves his country, and from a principle of good-will does good to it, in the other life loves the Lord's Kingdom, for there the Lord's Kingdom is his country, and he who loves the Lord's Kingdom, loves the Lord, because the Lord is all in all of His Kingdom." (A. C. 8821.)

The duty of loving one's country, is not only inculcated in the Divine command to love the neighbour as one's self, but it is also enjoined in the fourth commandment, which says, "Honour thy father and thy mother." It is written in the True Christian Religion "In the widest sense by this commandment, is meant, that men should love their country, because this nourishes them, and protects them" (T. C. R. 305); and, elsewhere in the Writings, it is said "a country is a mother in a natural, as the Church is in a spiritual, sense." (A. C. 8900.)

Now, this and much similar teaching places upon every member of the Church the duty of taking an intelligent end earnest interest in his country's well-being. The New Churchman is not lawfully at liberty to neglect his rightful service to his motherland The Divine command "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself " enjoins this duty upon him.

His first service to his country will be yielded by a man in the sincere and faithful discharge of his use in life, for in that he will minister unto the common good in the most practical manner. But besides this faithful performance of one's ordinary duties, there are many ways in which one's love for, and interest in, one's country should manifest itself.

In the cheerful and honest payment of taxes lies the duty of every citizen. This is, indeed, declared to be one of "the public debts of Charity" and it is stated in relation to "duties and taxes," that "the spiritual pay them from good-will, because they are collected for the preservation of their country, and for the protection of it and the Church, and for the services performed by officers and rulers, to whom salaries and wages are to be paid from the public treasury. Wherefore those to whom and cheerfully, and esteem it as iniquity to deceive and defraud; but those to whom their country and the Church are not the neighbour, pay them unwillingly and reluctantly, and whenever opportunity is given, they defraud and cheat, for with them their own house and their own flesh is the neighbour." (T. C. R. 430.) Thus is the payment of every rightful tax and duty one of the ways in which the sincere Christian can love his neighbour as himself.

But there are many other ways also in which one can obey this command as it applies to one's duty towards one's country. The government of one's country, parliamentary, county, or parochial should be a matter of earnest and intelligent concern to every New Churchman. Not that every man could, or should seek to, take a direct personal part in that government. It is an evil to attempt that if the particular use of one's own individual calling in life be injured thereby; but in other ways than by direct personal service these duties to be performed in connection with the various forms of government involved. in the well-being of one's country. It may be asserted that a New Churchman cannot approve of the form of government adopted by his country. That may be perfectly true. But the New Churchman cannot but approve of government itself, and that is the essential. The form of government, though of very great importance, is secondary to the fact of having some government, and surely of all men the loyal New Churchman should he able to distinguish between the form of anything, and the thing itself. Nothing can be worse than anarchy. To hold aloof from duty because one cannot have all one would,--because one cannot get the orderly forms one fain would have, is to encourage the spirit of pride and self-will which destroys the virtue commended and commanded by heaven of being content with one's lot,--content, not in the sense of desiring nothing better, for that should never be, but content in the sense of making the best of what is, that out of it something better may grow.

That is the Divine plan. The Lord makes the best of mankind, ever seeking to bend end incline to that which is better. This is the Divine contentment, and were not the Lord thus, then neither man nor angel could live, for no angel and no man is all that the Lord would fain have him be.

True, indeed, it is declared in the Writings of the Church that the country "should be loved according to the quality of its good" (Charity 85), but then there is spiritual good, moral good, and civil good, and on some one of these planes there will always be found some good of life or use which the country manifests, and for which it may be loved.

As an instance of genuine catholicity of feeling, of sincere sympathy, and of true charity, listen to what is written in The Doctrine of the New Jerusalem concerning Charity, and especially note the distinction therein made between religion, and doctrine. It is written, under the heading "That the Human race is the neighbour in the widest sense," "I can love all in the universe according to their religion, not those in my own country more than those in other kingdoms.... I love a Gentile better than a Christian, if he lives well according to his religion; if he worships God from the heart, saying, 'I will not do this evil because it is against God.' I do not love him, however, according to his doctrine but according to his life, since, if I love him according to his doctrine alone, I love him as an external man, while if I love him according to his life I love him also as an internal man. For if he has the good of religion, he has also moral good, and also civil good; they cannot be separated. Whereas he who is only in doctrine cannot have religion. Thus his moral and civil good has no life in it. It is merely external. It wishes to be seen, and it wishes to be believed to exist." (Charity 89.)

This Divine teaching thus applied to the individual may also be applied to the country, for the country is only the individual on a larger scale.

One may not be able to love many of the principles of the country as manifested in many of its laws, customs, precedents, and methods; but in the life, the use of the country there must always be found much that a loyal citizen may love, and should seek to preserve.

An Englishman has especial reason to be proud of the land of his birth. The position of the English in the other world makes very manifest how much there is in the dear old country which should feed the flame of patriotic pride, and should call from her sons and daughters the warmest filial affection. In the "noble English nation" there is the glorious liberty of free thought and free speech, and though that thought and speech may often assume forms hideous to behold, painful to hear, and disorderly in themselves, yet the liberty, the freedom is there, and this makes possible that "internal intellectual light" which places "the more excellent of the English nation in the centre of all Christians." (C. J. 39-41.)

From that which is revealed in the Doctrines of the Church concerning the nations of the earth, an Englishman may rejoice that of no other nation is so much said in commendation as of his own motherland. Much is said in her praise, and in praise of her sons and daughters. It is for every son and daughter of old England to see to it that they do their part sincerely and faithfully to maintain the reputation given to Englishmen in the True Christian Religion, where it is written, "Englishmen are lovers of their country and are zealous for its glory." (T. C. R. 808.)

It may be that in his efforts to serve his country, and to perform his duties as a citizen, other than those of his own particular use in life, the loyal member of the Lord's New Church will not find it possible to ally himself wholly with any of the several parties in the State--this is very probable, but the fact that a New Churchman cannot well be a, "party man" does not, cannot, relieve him of the positive duty of doing his best in each opportunity presented to him, to further his country's good, by using his deliberate judgment, and by supporting, irrespective of party, it may be, the best measures or men for the prosperity and success of his native land.

The country has a right to demand the intelligent interest, and hearty co-operation of its citizens, both in its general and its particular needs and duties, and the New Churchman has not done his duty until he has reached unto the state described in the Arcana Coelestia, where it is written, "He who loves his country, and has such an affection towards it as to find a pleasure in promoting its good from good-will, would lament if this should be denied him." (A. C. 3816.)

In conclusion, let it be carefully remembered that the reason why every citizen should love his country is because that country is his neighbour in a higher sense than any man or a collective number of men forming a society; and he should love his country also because that love is an ultimate on earth of the love of the Lord's Kingdom, and thus of the Lord Himself. Let the words of the following brief passage from the Spiritual Diary ring well in the ear of sincere attention, "They who wish well to their country also wish well to the Kingdom of the Lord; for after death this is their country: in the other life no other country is recognized." (S. D. 5399.)

To wish well to the Lord's Kingdom is to learn, to follow, and to attain unto the truths and goods which compose that Kingdom. An earthly kingdom is best served--is only truly served--by causing to predominate in it the virtues and principles of the great Fatherland of the regenerate, viz. heaven. The Lord must be recognized as the only Ruler and Governor, and the country must be loved for that which it has of the Lord in it.

May the Lord give us increasingly to realize the great blessings He has bestowed upon us by calling us into earthly existence in such a glorious country as is England--greater England in all the vast domains which own her sway; may He quicken within us a deeper appreciation of the untold blessings which the country affords in her nourishment and protection, and may He strengthen us to a fuller realization of our responsibilities, and to a more faithful discharge of our civic duties. So, by His help, shall we lay the ultimate of a still higher state of yet more glorious citizenship, its, while dwelling upon earth, we shall be preparing for an eternal residence in the Country of God,--the Kingdom of Heaven, and thus doing shall fulfil the Divine command, "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself." AMEN.



(Preached at Michael Church, May 14, 1905.)


IN the Word of the New Testament there are recorded some seven instances in which the Lord appeared to His disciples, or to the women who so devotedly followed Him, between the times of His Resurrection and Ascension.

No one Gospel gives the accounts of all these appearances, and it cannot be definitely declared what is the precise order, or even number of the occurrences.

A general and approximate view, however, can be taken, and this appears to be as follows:

First, He appeared to the women--the two Marys--who, returning from the sepulchre to the city, on the way meet the Lord, Who salutes them with, "All hail." (Matt. xxviii. 8-10; Mark xvi. 5-8; Luke xxiv. 9-11.)

Second. He appeared to Mary Magdalene, in the garden, and was recognized by her only after He called her by her own sweet name. (Mark xvi. 9-11; John xx. 11-18.)

Third. He appeared to Cleopas and another disciple as they walked from Jerusalem to Emmaus, and conversed with them by the way, making Himself known to them in the breaking of the bread. (Mark xvi. 12, 13; Luke xxiv. 13-35.)

Fourth. He appeared to all the disciples on the evening of the day of His Resurrection, save to Thomas, who was absent. (Mark xvi. 14; Luke xxiv. 36-49; John xx. 19-24.)

Fifth. He appeared eight days later to all the disciples, and convinces Thomas of His Resurrection. (John xx. 24-29.)

Sixth. He appeared to nine of His apostles at the Sea of Tiberias in Galilee. (Matt. xxviii. 16; John xxi. 1-24.)

Seventh. He appeared to His disciples and led them out as far as to Bethany, and there, while blessing them, accomplished His Ascension. (Mark xvi. 19, 20; Luke xxiv. 50-53.)

Such appear to have been the order and number of the Lord's post-Resurrection appearances so far as they are recorded in the Gospels.

As to the exact period of time which elapsed between the Resurrection and Ascension there is no mention whatever in the Gospels, but Luke, in the Acts of the Apostles, says it was "forty days," for speaking of the Lord's apostles, Luke writes, "To whom also He showed Himself alive after His passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the Kingdom of God." (Acts i. 3.)

In the light of these recorded facts concerning the appearances of the Lord after His Resurrection and prior to His Ascension, the question as to why the Lord remained, so to speak, this time with His disciples, becomes a very interesting and important one, to the mind of the thoughtful and loyal student of the Divine Word.

What particular purpose was served by this interval between the Resurrection, and the Ascension? Did it affect the Glorification of the Lord? Was it necessary to complete that Redemptive process, or was it solely for the sake of the disciples? Such questions are very important and have a great and practical bearing upon the regenerate life.

And, first, it may be with every assurance asserted that the interval between the Lord's Resurrection and Ascension was not necessary for, and had nothing to do with, the completion of the process of Glorification with the Lord.

The very emphatic teaching of the Divine Doctrines of the Church on the point of the Lord's Glorification is that it was completely, plenarily, and fully accomplished with the passion of the cross, thus by the time of His Resurrection. It is written, "The passion of the cross was the last combat by which He fully conquered the hells, and fully glorified His Human." (Doct. Lord 12.) Again, "The passion of the cross was the last of the Lord's temptations, by which He fully united the Human to the Divine, and the Divine to the Human, and thus glorified Himself." (A. C. 2776.)

And, again, "The Glorification is the unition of the Lord's Human with the Divine of His Father; this was done successively and plenarily by the passion." (T. C. R.126.)

Thus, as by the passion of the cross, and so at His Resurrection, the Lord had fully glorified His Human,--had completely united the Divine and Human in Himself--nothing whatever was left to be done in the way of Glorification during the interval between the Resurrection and Ascension.

The very fact also that on the day of His Resurrection the Lord imparted the Holy Spirit to His disciples showed that His glorification was completed, for that He imparted only after He had gone away to the Father, that is, was completely glorified, for to His disciples He said, "Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is expedient for you that I go away; for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send Him unto you!" (John xvi. 7.)

Is it urged that the Lord's statement to Mary in the garden, when He said, "Touch Me not, for I am not yet ascended to My Father" (John xx. 17), seems to suggest that He was not yet complete in His glorification? That is only an appearance. The mere request of not "to touch" had nothing to do with any incompleteness of His great work, for He urged His disciples to "handle" Him and see. (Luke xxiv. 39.) Rather did the request "Touch Me not" suggest that He was glorified, and as such was to ascend to the Father, for it is written, in explanation of these words, "By ascending to the Father is understood the unition of His Human with His Divine, the Human from the mother being fully rejected." (A. E. 899.)

The reason why the Lord requested Mary not to touch Him, whilst He invited the disciples and especially Thomas to do so, was on account of the different representation of Mary from that of the disciples. Mary, representing the Celestial, needed not sensual evidence of the Lord's reality, she perceived it, and to have received sensual evidence would have destroyed that perception, and therefore she was requested not to "touch."

Thomas, representing the sensual in man, could only be convinced by sensual evidence and, therefore, he was invited to examine the wounds, which could not then have actually existed in the Lord, but only appeared in accommodation to Thomas's sensual and corporeal ideas. (John xx. 27, 28.)

Thus, then, the forty days between the Resurrection and Ascension had nothing whatever to do with the completion of the Glorification for that was already fully completed. But, the real purpose of the Lord's appearances to His disciples between the Resurrection and the Ascension was for the sake of the disciples themselves. This has appeared somewhat even to those who have studied only the letter of the Word.

In the "Century Bible" edition of the Gospel by Mark, Principal Salmond, D.D., writes (p. 370) concerning "the appearances of the Risen Lord," as follows: "These had at least two great purposes, namely, to assure the disciples of the reality of the Resurrection, and the personal identity of their Lord, and to furnish opportunities of preparing them for their future ministry by instructing them in the things of the Kingdom."

This was undoubtedly so, and careful study in the light of the spiritual sense of the records of the Lord's appearances will make this plain. For instance, the Lord speaks of, "While I was yet with you (Luke xxiv. 44), and, so doing, He emphasized the distinction between the state when He was with them in physical and material presence, and the then state when He was with them in but spiritual presence.

Then, He calls especial attention to the fact that He has "flesh and bones" (Luke xxiv. 39) and explains to them that that made Him a much greater reality than any ordinary "spirit." Then, too, more than once it is asserted as the result of His appearing that He "opened their understanding." (Luke xxiv. 45.) Again, He is made known to them in the breaking of the bread (Luke xxiv. 30, 31.) by which was represented mutual love. (A. C. 9412.) And, again, He came to them whilst they were fishing (John xxi. 3-14) and by "to fish" is represented to teach and to instruct. (A. E. 513.)

All this goes to show, especially when each instance is separately examined in detail, that the great purpose of the interval between the Resurrection and the Ascension was that the disciples might be instructed, and be "thoroughly furnished unto all good works" (2 Tim. iii. 17) in the all-important use unto which they had been called.

Indeed, from the inspired Writings of the Church, it is seen that the Lord's one great purpose was to show that "everything of the Word was written concerning Himself, and that He came into the world to fulfil it." (Lord 11.)

The great and all-absorbing use of the Lord's prolonged sojourn with His disciples was to magnify in their eyes, and to make sure in their minds, the Divine Word of the Old Testament, as being from Him, about Him, and also He Himself; (A. C. 1540)--to magnify to them, and make living, the Word in the letter, which was represented by the piece of broiled fish and of an honeycomb which He ate in their presence. (A. C. 5020.)

Such, then, was the use and the purpose of the Lord's appearances during the interval between the Resurrection and the Ascension. It is well also further to note the lessons contained in other circumstances connected with these appearances.

Two places are particularly mentioned as the scenes of these manifestations of the Lord's presence. They were Galilee and Jerusalem--widely separated in space. Matthew's Gospel speaks only of Galilee; while Luke's Gospel speaks only of Jerusalem. John's Gospel speaks of both. All this is from the spiritual sense.

Galilee represents the natural. (A. E. 376:29.) The angel said to the women who were at the sepulchre, "Go quickly and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead; and behold He goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see Him." (Matt. xxviii. 7.) The natural was the ground, so to speak, on which the Lord met the disciples.

The Gospel of Matthew is given especially as the natural in Divine Revelation, therefore, that Gospel speaks only of Galilee as the scene of the Lord's appearances; and, what is remarkable, that Gospel does not record the Ascension itself, for that event is not on the plane of the natural. Jerusalem represents the Doctrine of Truth, and the command was "Tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem until ye be endued with (have put on) power from on high." (Luke xxiv. 49.) The Gospel by Luke is given especially as the spiritual in Divine Revelation and because Jerusalem represents the spiritual. Luke places the appearances of the Lord as being in Jerusalem and its immediate environs, Emmaus and Bethany. And because the Ascension can only he spiritually discerned, Luke alone gives a full description of its occurrence.

John, in the Gospel written by Him, mentions both Galilee and Jerusalem, because John represents the celestial, and that manifests itself both in the spiritual and natural and takes recognition of both.

Therefore, also, John's Gospel makes most of the fact that the Lord appeared to women, and especially to Mary Magdalene, for by the women is represented the affection of truth.

In brief conclusion, be it carefully noted that the post-Resurrection appearances of the Lord apply most forcefully to these present days, and their lessons need to be most carefully learned and heeded.

The Lord has made His Second Advent and, in so doing, has come in a spiritual manner. And this He has done entirely for man's sake, even as solely for the sake of the disciples He appeared in the interval between His Resurrection and Ascension. The Lord's coming, so far as He is concerned, is completed. It is a finished work. The final Revelation has been made.

Man can make no improvement in that. As an instrument Swedenborg can never be superseded.

Man's duty is to recognize now, as the disciples had to of old, that the Lord is wholly a Divine Man, that His Revelation is One, and a Whole; that the spiritual sense and the letter are not to be separated; they are each the Word, and being such are the Divine Human of the Lord.

From the affection of truth for its own sake, man is to hold on to this spiritual recognition of his Lord, which is taught in the fact that when the women were met by the Lord on their way from the sepulchre to Jerusalem, when they recognized Him, "They came and held Him by the feet." (Matt. xxviii. 9.)

By the feet is signified the natural, and, in respect to the Word, the letter of the Word. It is for the man of the New Church to hold on to the letter of the Word. The Old Church is destroying it with increased force and determination. The New Church must stand for its preservation, and her members will do this just in proportion as they first "tarry in Jerusalem," that is, study and reflect upon the teachings of the spiritual sense of the Word as revealed in the inspired Writings of the Church, for the spiritual sense will fill with glorious light and life every iota of the letter, and the letter will confirm and make sure every truth given in the Spirit.

The Lord has appeared in His opened word, there may we see Him, but this--only when He first opens our eyes by enabling us to see and to loyally acknowledge that He is the Word--the whole Word--that the Word is from Him, and that the Word is Himself dwelling with man. "Even so, came, Lord Jesus. (Apoc. xxii. 20.) AMEN.



(Preached at Michael Church, December 2, 1905.)


THERE is implanted in every one the desire to know the origin of all things. One of the earliest questions of life is, Whence did I come? and of every gift received the most natural as well as the first question is, Who sent it, from whom has it come? The universal tendency and disposition to ask this question undoubtedly arise from the fact that the Great Fount and Divine Origin of all things is with every one, and that His angels who attend on man from earliest conception to latest age, are ever desirous to draw mans attention and thought to Him Who is the Creator and Sustainer of Life, and from Whom alone comes every good and perfect gift.

The words of the text describe how the Apostle John was shown the origin of the Lord's New Church, which is to be the crown of all the Churches. This was shown to the Apostle John, and to none other, because as an Apostle he signifies the good of love to the Lord, thus the good of life, for which reason he was said to have been loved by the Lord above the other Apostles, and at the last Supper he lay on the Lord's bosom. (A. R. 879.)

The good of life that is true charity in act, is the only possible foundation for the Church, as that Church consists, not in the mere profession of faith, but in the life of faith. When the Apostle John was shown the beginning of the New Church, meant by the New Jerusalem in the Apocalypse, he was taken up as to his spirit, into the third heaven, where those angels dwell who are in genuine love from the Lord, and in the doctrine of genuine truth from Him. (A. R. 896.)

First of all, the Apostle was given to see that Church representatively as a city, for a city represents doctrine, and the Church of the Lord is formed by means of doctrine from the Word; and afterwards he was given to see it spiritually as an espoused virgin, who represents the affection of truth. Thus he saw it internally and externally even as the angels do (A. R. 881.) He saw the origin of the Lord's New Church, therefore, under the representation, and within the sphere of marriage, because everything in creation--everything in both the spiritual and natural worlds, has its origin in marriage and tends towards marriage.

In the light of this fact how important, as well as interesting is the question, Whence has Love Truly Conjugial its origin? That love is the fundamental love of all loves in the heavens and in the earths; where is its origin? It does not arise from the love of the sex, which is a natural love, and is common to man and animals. (C. L. 98.) It is peculiar to man, yea, to the regenerating man, whence then does it arise?

The most universal or general answer to this important query is that Love Truly Conjugial has its origin in the Lord Himself, and comes from Him as a bountiful gift to His creatures. For to receive Love Truly Conjugial one must be very close to the Lord--must indeed he in the Lord in him.

As was so forcibly and yet so sweetly said by the African who attended the assembly in the other world and won the prize of the "Turban ... set round with precious stones" given to the one who should most wisely solve the secret "concerning the origin of Conjugial Love, and concerning its ability or potency," "Love Truly Conjugial is not known except to those few who are near to God." (C. L. 113.)

But while the most general answer to the question,--What is the origin of Love Truly Conjugial?--is, of course, that it is from the Lord, still the studious and thoughtful mind asks for more particular instruction concerning this great and most precious gift from heaven.

And particular answer is revealed that while there are many origins, internal and external, of Conjugial Love, yet the one common and inmost origin is the "marriage of good and truth." (C. L. 83.) But what is the marriage of good and truth?

The answer to this can only come from Divine Revelation. It is not possible to get any true information concerning such a subject save from Divine Revelation. Yea, it is not generally known that there is any union between good and truth. Indeed, if the truth be faced, it is not known to-day, outside the borders of the New Church, that there is such a thing as good. True it is, the dictionaries do regard good as a noun, as well as an adjective; but the whole idea contained in the various definitions of the term "good" goes to show that in reality it is considered an adjective requiring substantive to give it reality, and to make it a definite matter. And, in the general idea of the most learned of men there is no recognition whatever that there is any union between good and truth, or love and wisdom; much less is there any recognition that upon the marriage which exists between good and truth the very existence of everything good and true depends.

On this matter it is revealed in the Work on Conjugial Love as follows:

"That this is so may be seen from common discourse, whenever they are mentioned; as when it is said, This is good, there is no thought of the true; and when it is said, This is true, there is no thought of the good; therefore at this day it is believed by many that truth is altogether one thing and good another; and by many also it is believed, that man is intelligent and wise, and thereby a man, according to the truths which he thinks, speaks, writes, and believes, and not at the same time according to the goods: nevertheless the good is not given without the true nor the true without the good; consequently there is given an eternal marriage between them, and this marriage is the origin of Conjugial Love." (C. L. 83.)

This is very explicit teaching and calls upon the man of the Church to continually remember that where there is truth there must be good, or the perversion of good, which is evil. They cannot be separated for they are the universals of creation, inasmuch as the Lord Himself is the Divine and Infinite Union of Divine Good and Divine Truth, or in other words, of Divine Love and Divine Wisdom.

But there is a most interesting spiritual and philosophical reason why outside the Lord's New Church the union of good and truth is not known; and that reason is, to use the very words of the Writings, "Because the good does not appear in the light of the understanding." (C. L. 83.) That which is true presents itself to the understanding of man, is considered by the understanding, is weighed, balanced, and judged by the understanding; but good is above the understanding, it comes not from without and thus does not pass through the senses and the understanding, but it descends from the Lord, through the heavens, and inflows into man from within, from above, coming he knows not how.

For good is that which flows from the Lord into the truth which is lived and done. It is the spiritual partner given unto the masculine understanding of truth, when that truth is ultimated in deed and life. Now, the very fact that good does not appear in the light of man's understanding, compels man to fall back upon Divine Revelation for all his knowledge concerning good and its union or marriage with truth, and, therefore, concerning Conjugial Love, which has its origin in the marriage of good and truth.

And, brethren, it is indeed well, that the man of the Church should continually remind himself of the serious fact, that nothing can possibly be known concerning Love Truly Conjugial except by and through Divine Revelation. The world has no source of knowledge concerning it. The knowledge perished with the Ancients and perished before the time when historical writing came into use. Therefore there are no records, no manuscripts, and not even any reliable traditions, from which the origin and nature of Love Truly Conjugial can be known from the world, apart from Divine Revelation. What a glorious privilege, therefore, does the man of the Lord's New Church enjoy, inasmuch as to him is given the Divine Revelation which tells him, and tells him fully, simply, and explicitly all about Love Truly Conjugial, its origin, its nature, its beauty and its ineffable delights.

Now, as has already been seen, that Divine Revelation in which the Lord has made His Second Advent, declares that the origin of Love Truly Conjugial is in the marriage of good and truth. And it is further revealed, that from the Lord as the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe there flows a perpetual union of good and truth, and that all created subjects receive it according to their forms. (C. L. 90.) Thus does the Lord make perpetually possible the reception of Love Truly Conjugial by man. Indeed man is so created that he may be the continual recipient of the marriage of good and truth, and have the origin within him of Love Truly Conjugial.

But by the term "man," as now used is meant man and woman, for it is written, "The male and the female were created that they may be the very form of the marriage of good and truth." (C. L. 100.) Singly, neither man nor woman can attain unto that which in the eyes of the Lord and the angels constitutes a true and living man. For this there must needs be a man and a woman, united in mind, conjoined in spirit, and harmonized like sweet music set to noble words. This, indeed, is the highest end of the man and woman who realize that life is given on earth that by regeneration man and woman may prepare themselves for a holy union---"a legitimate and lovely companionship with one" (C. L. 49), in which companionship they may spend the ages of eternity in peace and heavenly usefulness.

Therefore the most practical question of life, for both man and woman is, How can I best prepare for this happy consummation?

The answer to this all-important enquiry is only to be found in the careful study of Divine Revelation as to the distinctive characteristics of the masculine and the feminine, and the orderly way in which they can be so united as to realize the marriage of good and truth, and thus to attain unto Love Truly Conjugial.

Now what are the distinguishing characteristics of the male and female, as they call be receptive of the marriage of good and truth--the origin of Conjugial Love?

First, the male. He is born that he may be intellectual (C. L. 90), that he may be the understanding of truth. (C. L. 100.) All his disposition as a male is to cultivate the understanding. His love is the love of knowledge, he desires to be wise, he loves to know and to reason from what he knows; he applies himself to those things in which the understanding predominates; his manners are such as to manifest more particularly the predominance of the understanding, he cares not to move or act until he sees the why and the wherefore; and even his physical form and structure indicate, in contradistinction to the female, the comparative harshness and rigidity of the masculine understanding. Such is a man--a male man, who realizes the nobility, strength and firmness of the true masculine.

And, next, the female. She is born a will, she is born to be the love of a man's wisdom (C. L. 91), to be good in form (C. L. 100.) Her disposition, as a female, is to cultivate the affectional; she loves knowledge, intelligence, and wisdom, yet she loves these not in herself but in the man to whom her heart is given. She applies herself to the practical and useful. She perceives ends, even whilst the man is slowly developing the means for their attainment. Her manners, too, show the predominance of the will, of the voluntary; and her physical form shows, as opposed to the male, the comparative softness, tenderness, and beauty of the feminine.

Such, in the light of Divine Revelation, are the main differences between the male and the female, which make them essential to each other that from being, whilst twain, only parts of man, they may, being united, become a perfect man, an image and likeness of God.

Woman needs man that he may obtain the knowledge, understanding and wisdom which she loves, and which shall guide her in all her affection, sweetness, and mark reasonable and righteous her unstinted affection and her unselfish devotion. Woman needs man's powers of prolification that she may to him bear the spiritual offspring of true affection and disinterested thought, and that, by and together with him, she may be the hallowed means of perpetuating the human race.

Man needs woman that she may be the love of the wisdom he acquires, for if the love of wisdom, after the knowledge is acquired, still remains with a man, it inevitably becomes an evil love, fills man with conceit and destroys Remains within him. (C. L. 88.) Man needs woman to save him from himself,--needs her to animate him, to inspire him, to make him practical and powerful in action--needs her to round off his angularities, to make tender his determinations, to soften his convictions, and to render permanent all his efforts.

Even thus, while perfectly distinct, do men and women need each other, for the making of a true man,--an Adam, a homo--a complete man.

But to-day, appearances belie all this teaching of Divine Revelation. Man and woman seem much the same, and the whole trend of society is to demonstrate that, apart from the merely physical, they are the same. Women think for men, and poor fools would some so-called men be if the women did not do their thinking. Men feel and love for women, and cruel indeed would be some so-called women if for them the men did not act the softer, tenderer part. Women replace men in the public forum and mart, in their more forensic duties (C. L. 91); men are found willing to effeminate themselves into the doing from choice of duties rightly domestic and belonging to the house. Things are upside down, and the heaven-drawn lines of demarcation between the manly masculine and the womanly feminine are being more and more destroyed. This is the age of divorce not of union, and it is all the result of the consummation of the age, the decay and death of the First Christian Church.

But in the Church of the New Jerusalem, the Crowning Church of all the ages, the Church of the Second Advent, all this has to be, and will be changed, and the first step towards that change, on which depends the preservation of the human race, must be that the man of the Church knows whence is the origin of Love Truly Conjugial, and that he realizes that no instruction can come to him concerning this vital theme save through the instrumentality of Divine Revelation.

"Concerning Love Truly Conjugial, and concerning its heavenly delights" the angels said to the human instrument of the Lord's Second Advent, "Write about it, and follow revelation, and afterwards the book written concerning it shall be let down by us from heaven and we shall see whether the things which are therein are received; and at the same time whether they are willing to acknowledge that that love is according to religion with man, spiritual with the spiritual, natural with the natural and merely carnal with adulterers." (C. L. 534.) For twenty-five years the Lord had manifested himself to the chosen instrument of his Second Advent--for twenty-five years He had opened the interiors of his mind and spirit, and thus provided and arranged that he should be "in the spiritual world with angels, and at the same time in the natural world with men" (C. L. 1); and to this man, with more than a quarter of a century's unique experience, the angels say concerning Love Truly Conjugial, "Write about it, and follow revelation." Thus they realize that what will be written will be only that which will be from the Lord, and they are ready to receive the Book thus written, into heaven, and then they themselves agree to let it down to earth. What more does the man of the Church require to believe that the book of Conjugial Love is from the Lord, and that its teachings are of Divine authority?

The angels did let it down from heaven to earth. From the Lord they communicated to the man who wrote it many things; but how has that Book, beloved of the angels, and written from revelation, been received by men on the earth, yea, even by the men of the Church?

True, indeed, again the experience of the Lord has been "He came unto His own and His own received Him not." (John i. 11.)

In conclusion, let the statement of the angels concerning Love Truly Conjugial be especially noted. They declared that "that love is according to religion with man." (C. L. 534.) And, again, "The human conjugial and religion go together at the same pace, and every step and movement from religion and to religion, is also a step from and to the conjugial which is peculiar and proper to a Christian man." (C. L. 80.) It is impossible to separate Conjugial Love from Religion. A wicked man may have the love of the sex, yea, he may limit that love to one of the sex, but he cannot have Conjugial Love, for that love has its origin only in the marriage of good and truth.

Hence, in order that the man and woman of the Church may enter into Love Truly Conjugial they must learn the truths of the Word. The man must study them diligently, receive them intelligently, and make them a matter of serious and rational understanding; the woman must love those truths, as known by the man, encourage him to read, mark, learn, and to inwardly digest them; they must read together, think together, and then, above all, must act together; must seek together to live the truths they know for when they know the truth and obey it, the Lord flows in with good, and that good from the Lord united to the truths known and loved by man, produces the human Conjugial, yea, it is Love Truly Conjugial with man.

Thus, brethren, the attainment of Love Truly Conjugial is a matter of regeneration. It can be obtained only a, the result of much combat and tribulation. Earth cannot give it, for it descends from heaven, and finds its correspondence in the Marriage of the Lord and His Church. The all-glorious promise of the God of Heaven is that, in His New Church "Conjugial Love as it was with the Ancients, will be raised up again by the Lord after His Coming, because this love is from the Lord alone, and it is with those who, from Himself, by the Word, become spiritual." (C. L. 81.) He has assured the members of His Church that for those who have loved, have wished, and have asked of the Lord, there is provided "a legitimate, and lovely companionship with one." (C. L. 49.)

Knowing these things, and relying upon the Word of the Lord, let us diligently follow after righteousness, learning, loving and living the Sacred Truths of the opened Word of the Lord. So shall we have realized within us the marriage of good and truth, from which shall flow, as from a fountain, Love Truly Conjugial, and either here, or in the great hereafter, we shall, by the Lord's mercy, be permitted to enter into all the joys and interior delights of that love which is the fundamental love of all the loves of heaven and earth, for we shall then hear the voice of the angel saying unto us, "Come hither, I will show thee the Bride, the Lamb's wife." AMEN.



(Preached at Michael Church, January 25, 1908.)


THESE words were spoken by the Lord to Nathaniel after he had acknowledged Him as "The Son of God" and "The King of Israel," and they constitute the first promise which the Lord gave to His disciples. "Heaven opened" was thus promised as the great reward to those who were faithful to the Lord at His First Advent. The same promise is made also to those who loyally follow the Lord at His Second Coming.

Man, to-day, has forgotten that it was, and is, one of the conditions of his birth that he should have heaven opened unto him even during his life on earth, and that he should have intimate association on the spiritual plane with angels and spirits even whilst he lives on earth. Indeed it is part of the very order of creation that man should be the uniting link between the spiritual and the natural worlds, for man is in both worlds, even whilst he is consciously only dwelling in this world of nature. As to his spirit,--his affections and thoughts--every one living is in the other world, and consorts with spirits, good and had. Only to be in true order is necessary, that man may be conscious of this fellowship with spiritual beings, and may realize the very intimate relationship which exists between the two worlds.

In the Arcana Coelestia it is written, "Man is so created that the Divine things of the Lord may descend through him even to the ultimates of nature and from the ultimates of nature may ascend to him; so that man might be a medium uniting the Divine with the world of nature, and uniting the world of nature with the Divine, that thus through man, as through a uniting medium, the very ultimate of nature might live from the Divine, which would be the case if man had lived according to Divine order." (A. C. 3702.) Again, it is written, "Man was so created by the Lord as to be able while living in the body, at the same time to speak with spirits and angels--as in fact was done in the most ancient times; for, being a spirit clothed with a body, he is one with them." (A. C. 69.) But the one thing necessary to enable man to enjoy this privilege, which was Divinely intended to be his inheritance, is that he be in faith in the Lord; in other words, he must be in truths from good, and especially must he be in "the acknowledgment of the Lord, and of the Divine in His Human." (H. H. 250.)

The following remarkable teaching is given in the Spiritual Diary, "I also spoke with spirits to the effect that if men were in faith in the Lord, heaven would thus be opened to them, or an interior way to heaven, which is closed, just as (has occurred) from the Lord's mercy in me, and so there would be a commerce of souls, spirits, and angels with men in the world, and of men in the world with souls, spirits and angels, so that spirits would know what is transacted in the world, and men what in heaven. Thus they would on both sides live together." (S. D. 2541.)

But, brethren, as this glorious teaching is heard,--teaching which opens up glorious prospects to those of loyal mind and life--as this teaching is heard let it be most carefully realized that it Has nothing to do with, and contains absolutely no encouragement for, the practices of what is called Spiritism.

Spiritism is low, vulgar, and sensual. It is attended with the greatest danger to the soul and is subversive of all that makes for regeneration. It concerns itself with worldly things, asks sensuous questions, and seeks worldly and sensuous results. It is disorderly and they who practise it are they who seek deception and a lie.

But the intercourse with spirits and angels which is possible to those who are in a true faith, and are led by the Lord, is internal, spiritual and celestial, and leads to the Divine. It is an interior way to heaven, a way through the higher degrees of the mind, an opening of the higher faculties, not sought after as a set purpose, but accepted as a gift from Him who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.

It is written, "Only those whose interiors are opened by Divine Truths, even to the Lord, are able to speak with the angels of heaven, since it is into these truths with man that the Lord flows, and when the Lord flows in, heaven also flows in." (H. H. 250.)

Divine Truths loved and lived open a man's interiors, because the Lord is in them, and they are the light and life of heaven. The one thing necessary for man to come into this blissful state is for him to become spiritually minded, to think more about heaven and the Lord than about the world, and to think from heaven and the Lord as he also keenly thinks about the duties, responsibilities and uses of this world.

The personal testimony of the instrument of the Lord's Second Advent, which is part of Divine Revelation, is most telling as he says, "I can aver from all experience of the spiritual world that no one is in the truths of faith, and in the goods of love, except him who thinks of the Lord's Divine at the same time that he thinks of His Human, also that no one is spiritual or an angel unless he has been in that thought and consequent acknowledgment in the world." (A. E. 135.) Hence, in the truths of faith which are believed, loved, and lived the Divine of the Lord must be unequivocally acknowledged, and these truths which open the interiors of man's mind, and cause him to speak with angels--these truths are represented in the promise of the Lord by "The angels of Cod ascending and descending upon the Son of Man."

The Divine Truths which man first receives are the angels which ascend from earth to heaven. They point ever upwards to heaven and to the Lord; and the truths of after life, which come in a higher state of regeneration, as the result of former truths known and lived, are represented by the angels which descend from heaven to earth bringing holy perception, and interior thought in their train.

What a promise therefore is contained in the Divine words, "Henceforward ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man." This promise was particularly realized by the Servant of the Lord through whom He made His Second Coming, the man EMANUEL SWEDENBORG. There is a question which may be most usefully asked, viz.: Have the members of the Church generally or particularly realized the fact that intromission into the spiritual world was an absolute essential of Swedenborg's mission, and that in that respect he was, in very truth a representative New Churchman? Swedenborg was no Spiritist. He condemned in unmeasured terms the sin of Spiritism. He abhorred its profane curiosity, and its conceited imposture. But, Swedenborg rejoiced in the mercy of the Lord, who caused him to be a familiar companion with angels and spirits, and recounted again and again, to his friends, the number of years he had enjoyed that great and inestimable privilege.

Let it be distinctly remembered that to equip Emanuel Swedenborg for his great mission as the instrument of the Second Advent, it was not sufficient that he should attain a high degree of intelligence, neither was it enough that he should be in an exalted state of good. In addition to these, it was essential that his spiritual sight should be opened, and that he should be perfectly at home with angels and spirits in the other world.

Concerning the arcana of the internal sense of the Word he writes: "Those arcana can be revealed to no one, but to him who knows that sense, and to whom at the same time it has been granted to have fellowship with the angels, and to speak spiritually with them." (L. J. 42.)

Again, in the Invitation to the New Church, it is written, "In order that the true Christian Religion might be manifested, it was absolutely necessary that some one should be introduced into the spiritual world, and derive from the Lord's mouth genuine truths out of the Word." (Invitation 38.) And in the True Christian Religion, "That the Lord manifested Himself before me, His servant, and sent me to this office, and that He afterwards opened the sight of my spirit, and so has introduced me into the spiritual world, and has granted me to behold the heavens and the hells and to converse with angels and spirits, and this now uninterruptedly for many years, I testify in truth." (T. C. R. 779.)

Finally, from the Work on The Divine Providence, "I have had discourse with spirits and with angels now for many years; but neither has a spirit dared, nor any angel wished to tell me anything concerning anything in the Word, or concerning any doctrine from the Word; but the Lord alone has taught me, Who has been revealed to me, and has enlightened me." (D. P. 135.) Thus was Emanuel Swedenborg a, citizen of the spiritual world--consciously and actively a citizen of the spiritual world, even whilst he lived in this world, and this, his happy state, was absolutely essential for the unique and important mission he was called and selected to perform.

Never again will man be needed to perform the use which Emanuel Swedenborg performed. He was only an instrument for the performance of a world-saving act on the part of the Lord. But Emanuel Swedenborg was not only the first New Churchman upon earth, but he was a representative New Churchman at least in this, that eschewing all the lying and deceitful snares of mere spiritism, he did enjoy open intercourse with the angels of heaven, not by sensuous means, but by having the interiors of his mind opened by the reception of the truths of faith by the acknowledgment of the Lord, as to His Divine, in those truths, and by an upright, unselfish, and conscientious life, in accordance with the Divine Teachings of the truths revealed. In like manner every member of the Church may, if he will, have his interiors opened not only to the plane of the angels, but even to the Lord.

It is the will of the Lord that the two worlds--the spiritual and the natural--should, here and now, meet in man. The days of the Golden Age, in this respect, must return. Men may speak with the angels and see the things of heaven. To this end, and as the only means, men must learn to think with the angels, to love and desire with the angels, and to live like the angels, in implicit confidence in the Lord, and in the continual endeavour and determination to shun all evils as sins against Him.

First there must be the ascent with the angels from earth to heaven. Truths must be received as the Lord's and not man's, self must be conquered, the world must be subdued, and then, will most surely follow, the descent of the angels with man, for, then, in all things lower man will see reflected the higher things of heaven and the Lord. He will read the letter of the Word only in the light of its spirit; he will view the world only in the light of heaven; he will live not chiefly for worldly prosperity but rather for heavenly wealth, remembering ever on this side of death, the Divine statement that "The life previously lived is only a life for the formation of his spirit." (A. E. 125.)

Thus will heaven and the world meet and mingle in the character and life of the regenerating man of the Church, men and angels will be once more as familiar friends, men will know what angels do, hear what they what they experience, and angels, through men, will know what the world is, see its needs, know its state, and press down to help their body-laden brothers to rise up higher.

All this was realized by Emanuel Swedenborg as a representative New Churchman, and all this is promised to all who are led by the Lord in His Divinely revealed truths of faith, for to such the promise is given, "Henceforward ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man." AMEN.