士师记 12

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1 耶弗他和以法莲

2 耶弗他对他们:“我和我的民跟亚扪激烈争战的时候,我曾经呼求你们,你们却没有来我们脱离他们的

3 我见你们不来拯我,我就拚命上去攻击亚扪人,耶和华就把他们交在我的里。你们今日为什么上我这里来攻打我呢?”

4 于是耶弗他召集了基列所有的人,与以法莲人争战;基列人击杀了以法莲人,因为以法莲人曾经说过:“你们基列人在以法莲玛拿西中间,不过是以法莲逃亡的人罢了。”

5 基列人占领约旦河的各渡口,不容以法莲人过去。如果以法莲逃亡的人:“让我过去吧。”基列人就问他:“你是以法莲人吗?”如果他:“不是。”

6 基列人就对他:“请‘示播列’。”以法莲人因为发不出准确的字音,就成“西播列”;基列人就把他捉住,在约旦河的渡口那里杀了;那时以法莲人死了四万人。

7 耶弗他逝世耶弗他治理以色列人年;基列人耶弗他死了以后,埋葬在基列的一座城里。

8 以比赞耶弗他之,有伯利恒人以比赞治理以色列人

9 他有三十儿子三十女儿女儿都嫁到外面去,又给他的儿子从外面娶了三十个女子作妻子。他治理以色列人年。

10 以比赞死了,就埋葬在伯利恒

11 以伦以比赞之,有西布伦人以伦,治理以色列人年。

12 西布伦人以伦死了以后,就埋葬在西布伦地的亚雅仑。

13 押顿以伦之,有比拉顿人希列的儿子押顿治理以色列人

14 他有四十儿子三十个孙子,着七十头驹;押顿治理以色列人年。

15 比拉顿人希列的儿子押顿死了,埋葬在以法莲地,就是在亚玛力人的地。

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Exploring the Meaning of Judges 12      

Napsal(a) Rev. Julian Duckworth

Judges 12: Jephthah’s conflict with Ephraim; Ibzan, Elon and Abdon.

After Jephthah’s victory over the Ammonites, the men of Ephraim came to Jephthah, demanding to know why he hadn’t asked them to join the battle. Jephthah answered that when his people had struggled against Ammon in the past, Ephraim had not answered their calls for help.

Jephthah and Ephraim went to war over this dispute, and Ephraim was defeated. Jephthah’s men, the men of Gilead, stood by the fords of the Jordan to catch fleeing Ephraimites. When a man asked to cross, they would tell him to say “Shibboleth”. The men who pronounced the word as “Sibboleth” were from Ephraim, and were put to death. In total, forty-two thousand Ephraimites were killed in the war.

Jephthah died after judging Israel for six years, and was buried in Gilead.

*****

The spiritual meaning of Ephraim is to understand the truths of the Word. Wherever Ephraim is referenced in a negative sense, as in this chapter, the spiritual meaning becomes an understanding of the Word which has been destroyed. The Word commands us to live by what we understand and believe; in this story, Ephraim did not heed Jephthah’s words (see Swedenborg’s work, Doctrine of Sacred Scripture 79[3]).

The escaping Ephraimites were exposed by their accent, as they could not pronounce the ‘sh’ sound of “Shibboleth”. The letter ‘h’ stands for the genuine truth of the Word, which is the love of the Lord and for the neighbour. A purely intellectual understanding of the Word fails to comprehend this living heart that makes the Word what it is, and consequently, can only say “Sibboleth” (see Swdenborg’s work, Arcana Caelestia 4280).

The Word tells us that forty-two thousand Ephraimites were killed - that seems an colossal number of casualties! But the Word does not report facts from a historical standpoint; it presents living truths, even in numbers. Forty-two is six multiplied by seven, so its spiritual meaning can be understood as a combination of both numbers. In the creation story, the Lord worked for six days and rested on the seventh. This idea relates to our regeneration, which involves our struggles during temptation, as well as the peace that comes from spiritual growth. The fact that the number of casualties was in the thousands emphasizes the significance of the spiritual meaning (Arcana Caelestia 8539[2]).

Jephthah judged Israel six years. The number six here carries the same meaning of conflict and work during temptation. The temptation in this chapter would be to understand the Word purely in an intellectual or dead way (Ephraim in a bad sense), rather than living by the truths it teaches.

*****

After Jephthah, there were three minor judges of Israel. The first was Ibzan, who gave away thirty daughters to marry abroad, and brought in thirty foreign daughters for his thirty sons. The Bible does not tell us any more about Ibzan, except the curious fact that he came from Bethlehem. It’s uncertain whether this is the same town where the Lord would be born, or another town of the same name.

Ibzan, whose name means ‘illustrious’, stands for a generous and willing spirit, able to take in new perspectives and to share his blessings with others. This concept is called mutual love, which is a key quality of heaven (Arcana Caelestia 2738).

The next judge, Elon, came from Zebulun, and led Israel for ten years. Even these few details that we learn about him present a sense of integrity in their spiritual meanings: his name means an ‘oak’, a tree which is associated with nobility, strength, and longevity, each of which are fitting qualities of a leader; he came from Zebulun, which represents the unity of good and truth (Arcana Caelestia 4592[13]); and the number ten (the number of years that he judged Israel) symbolizes completeness, and also our spiritual ‘remains’ (see Sweenborg’s work, Doctrine of Life 56).

The third and final judge, Abdon, had forty sons and thirty grandsons who rode on seventy young donkeys. Abdon’s name means “to serve”, which is the third spiritual principle after love and truth. To serve is to offer our life to God through charity toward others. A young donkey represents the untamed level of our lives before regeneration, which needs spiritual care (Arcana Caelestia 5084[8]).

These last three ‘minor’ judges remind us of the qualities which guard against the next major opponent of Israel: the Philistines, who represent faith without regard to charity or good works.

Swedenborg

Výklad(y) nebo odkazy ze Swedenborgových prací:

Arcana Coelestia 2781, 9212


Odkazy ze Swedenborgových nevydaných prací:

Apocalypse Explained 31

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玛拿西
'Manasseh' signifies the will of the spiritual church.

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约旦河
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以色列人
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死了
Dead (Gen. 23:8) signifies night, in respect to the goodnesses and truths of faith.


Dead (Gen. 23:8) signifies night, in respect to the goodnesses and truths of faith.


按照瑞典博格的说法,时间和空间不存在于精神现实中,它们是纯粹的自然事物,只存在于物质层面。这就意味着,一个精神性的东西不可能在时间上的另一个精神性的东西 "之后 "发生,因为没有时间。而一个精神性的东西也不可能在空间上 "追随 "另一个精神性的东西,因为没有空间。 相反,灵性的现实是建立在灵性状态的基础上,或天使的爱和思想。这些爱和思想以因果链的方式连接在一起,天使们的体验就像我们体验时间一样;一个思想在精神层面上流向另一个思想,而天使们感觉到这种进步,就像我们感觉到一个时刻流向另一个时刻的进步一样。当天使有类似的思想和感觉时,他们体验到的亲近感和我们对肉体亲近感的体验是非常相同的;他们对 "空间 "的概念是整个精神世界中的灵魂所拥有的思想和情感的变化。 当《圣经》将某件事情描述为 "后边 "的东西时,那么,属灵的意义就与属灵状态的递进有关;它是在前边的东西基础上产生的新的属灵状态。由于较高的状态会流入较低的状态,所以 "之后 "的东西往往是较低的、较外在的状态。例如,内心深处对他人的善的渴望,会自动地流向具体的想法,即我们可以做的具体的善事。那么,这些具体的想法,就会 "在 "善的欲望之后。

伯利恒
在圣经中,以法拉和伯利恒之间有很强的关系;它们可能是同一个城镇的两个不同名称,也可能是以法拉描述的地区包括伯利恒。不管是什么情况,它们在《圣经》中都扮演着重要的角色。当然,伯利恒是众所周知的耶稣的出生地,但也是大卫和本雅明的出生地,本雅明的母亲拉结也葬在那里。 原因是以法拉和伯利恒(顺便说一下,还有本雅明)代表了我们属灵的线的一个关键元素,这个元素使我们有可能拥有属灵的生活。 在最深层次上,我们的身份、我们的人性,是由爱所决定的--我们所爱的东西使我们成为什么样的人、什么样的人。但这种爱被锁在我们的内心深处;它不是我们可以直接与他人分享的。要分享它,我们必须给它一个形式--而给它一个形式意味着我们实际上是把它变成了思想,变成了真理。作为真理,它可以被分享,如果我们幸运的话,接受它的人将能够反其道而行之,感受到并内化为真理中所包含的爱。 不过,这个过程,涉及到两种 "量子飞跃"。爱是一种内在的东西,而真理是一种外在的东西(或如瑞典博格所说,爱是天体性的,真理是精神性的),内在的东西和外在的东西是分开的,处于两个不同的存在平面。把爱作为真理表达出来,需要一个特殊的过程,从真理中接受爱也需要一个特殊的过程。这就是伯利恒的意义所在。 伯利恒(和以法拉和本雅明)代表了瑞典博格所说的 "天人之灵"。这就是天体元素--爱--可以向着一种形式推进,可以尽可能地变得 "像真理一样"。与之相匹配的是一种叫做 "精神的天体",在这里,精神元素--真理--可以尽可能地变成 "爱的样子"。通过这些中间人,爱可以跳过这道鸿沟,有点像神经冲动穿越突触,或者像磁场把两块磁铁拉到一起。这是我们把爱变成有用的形式的唯一途径,也是我们分享爱的唯一途径。 这也解释了为什么约瑟要等到本雅明与他的弟兄们同在埃及时,才能向他们显明自己--约瑟代表灵界的天人,需要与天人的灵界的灵界配对才能沟通。这也解释了为什么主必须在伯利恒出生的原因。祂以人的形式降临,使祂的完美、无限的、神圣的爱能以真理的形式出现,与我们分享。这必须通过把一个内在的、天上的东西----祂的爱----变成一个外在的、属灵的形式----祂的真理来实现。只有通过天体的灵性,也就是伯利恒,才能实现这一点。

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四十
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 The Men of Gilead Kill the Ephraimites
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