Genesis 47

Studovat vnitřní smysl

           

1 And Joseph cometh, and declareth to Pharaoh, and saith, `My father, and my brethren, and their flock, and their herd, and all they have, have come from the land of Canaan, and lo, they [are] in the land of Goshen.'

2 And out of his brethren he hath taken five men, and setteth them before Pharaoh;

3 and Pharaoh saith unto his brethren, `What [are] your works?' and they say unto Pharaoh, `Thy servants [are] feeders of a flock, both we and our fathers;'

4 and they say unto Pharaoh, `To sojourn in the land we have come, for there is no pasture for the flock which thy servants have, for grievous [is] the famine in the land of Canaan; and now, let thy servants, we pray thee, dwell in the land of Goshen.'

5 And Pharaoh speaketh unto Joseph, saying, `Thy father and thy brethren have come unto thee:

6 the land of Egypt is before thee; in the best of the land cause thy father and thy brethren to dwell -- they dwell in the land of Goshen, and if thou hast known, and there are among them men of ability, then thou hast set them heads over the cattle I have.'

7 And Joseph bringeth in Jacob his father, and causeth him to stand before Pharaoh; and Jacob blesseth Pharaoh.

8 And Pharaoh saith unto Jacob, `How many [are] the days of the years of thy life?'

9 And Jacob saith unto Pharaoh, `The days of the years of my sojournings [are] an hundred and thirty years; few and evil have been the days of the years of my life, and they have not reached the days of the years of the life of my fathers, in the days of their sojournings.'

10 And Jacob blesseth Pharaoh, and goeth out from before Pharaoh.

11 And Joseph settleth his father and his brethren, and giveth to them a possession in the land of Egypt, in the best of the land, in the land of Rameses, as Pharaoh commanded;

12 and Joseph nourisheth his father, and his brethren, and all the house of his father [with] bread, according to the mouth of the infants.

13 And there is no bread in all the land, for the famine [is] very grievous, and the land of Egypt and the land of Canaan are feeble because of the famine;

14 and Joseph gathereth all the silver that is found in the land of Egypt, and in the land of Canaan, for the corn that they are buying, and Joseph bringeth the silver into the house of Pharaoh.

15 And the silver is consumed out of the land of Egypt, and out of the land of Canaan, and all the Egyptians come in unto Joseph, saying, `Give to us bread -- why do we die before thee, though the money hath ceased?'

16 and Joseph saith, `Give your cattle; and I Give to you for your cattle, if the money hath ceased.'

17 And they bring in their cattle unto Joseph, and Joseph giveth to them bread, for the horses, and for the cattle of the flock, and for the cattle of the herd, and for the asses; and he tendeth them with bread, for all their cattle, during that year.

18 And that year is finished, and they come in unto him on the second year, and say to him, `We do not hide from my lord, that since the money hath been finished, and possession of the cattle [is] unto my lord, there hath not been left before my lord save our bodies, and our ground;

19 why do we die before thine eyes, both we and our ground? buy us and our ground for bread, and we and our ground are servants to Pharaoh; and give seed, and we live, and die not, and the ground is not desolate.'

20 And Joseph buyeth all the ground of Egypt for Pharaoh, for the Egyptians have sold each his field, for the famine hath been severe upon them, and the land becometh Pharaoh's;

21 as to the people he hath removed them to cities from the [one] end of the border of Egypt even unto its [other] end.

22 Only the ground of the priests he hath not bought, for the priests have a portion from Pharaoh, and they have eaten their portion which Pharaoh hath given to them, therefore they have not sold their ground.

23 And Joseph saith unto the people, `Lo, I have bought you to-day and your ground for Pharaoh; lo, seed for you, and ye have sown the ground,

24 and it hath come to pass in the increases, that ye have given a fifth to Pharaoh, and four of the parts are for yourselves, for seed of the field, and for your food, and for those who [are] in your houses, and for food for your infants.'

25 And they say, `Thou hast revived us; we find grace in the eyes of my lord, and have been servants to Pharaoh;'

26 and Joseph setteth it for a statute unto this day, concerning the ground of Egypt, [that] Pharaoh hath a fifth; only the ground of the priests alone hath not become Pharaoh's.

27 And Israel dwelleth in the land of Egypt, in the land of Goshen, and they have possession in it, and are fruitful, and multiply exceedingly;

28 and Jacob liveth in the land of Egypt seventeen years, and the days of Jacob, the years of his life, are an hundred and forty and seven years.

29 And the days of Israel are near to die, and he calleth for his son, for Joseph, and saith to him, `If, I pray thee, I have found grace in thine eyes, put, I pray thee, thy hand under my thigh, and thou hast done with me kindness and truth; bury me not, I pray thee, in Egypt,

30 and I have lain with my fathers, and thou hast borne me out of Egypt, and buried me in their burying-place.' And he saith, `I -- I do according to thy word;'

31 and he saith, `Swear to me;' and he sweareth to him, and Israel boweth himself on the head of the bed.

  

Exploring the Meaning of Genesis 47      

Napsal(a) Helen Kennedy

This chapter continues the "Joseph story." Joseph’s family has come to Egypt to escape the famine in Canaan. Joseph is thrilled to have them with him, especially his father, Jacob, and he gives them land in Goshen, the best part of Egypt. Pharaoh welcomes them, too, asking Joseph’s brothers about their work, and talking with Jacob, too.

In verses 1-6, Pharaoh corresponds here to external, scientific knowledge, while Joseph includes also the inner enlightenment that flows from the deepest things (Secrets of Heaven 6062). Without this influx our natural level does not have any life, for it is totally devoid of life on its own. Life comes to us directly from the Lord, and this chapter gives a glimpse of how the Lord creates life in us (Secrets of Heaven 6063).

When Joseph brings five of his brothers to meet Pharaoh, this means that some truths, meant by “five,” flowing from heaven reached into the natural part of us where factual things (Pharaoh) reside.

Pharaoh asks about their occupation, and they tell him that they are shepherds, as were their fathers. Here the natural part of us becomes aware of new things flowing in from the spiritual depths. It wonders what good these new insights will lead to. Since shepherds tend sheep that are innocently led, it follows that Joseph’s brothers represent truths that lead to innocence. In all innocence there is good from the Lord.

Truth and knowledge sustain the human soul just as food does the body, but famine represents a severe lack of it. When we are regenerating or being made spiritual, we have a desire for knowledge and wisdom, and when we don’t find it, we are desolate, listless, and famished. Goshen is the best land in Egypt; living in it symbolizes that a person who is being regenerated has access to the types of natural knowledges that begin our heavenly instruction.

Pharaoh's generosity illustrates how the natural part of us starts perceiving some deeper things. Jacob’s father and brothers being permitted to dwell in “the best of the land” shows the delight that our external mind has in receiving insights from spiritual things. Any “competent men” or “energetic men” (the latter used in a different translation) signifies that the outermost part of us is perceiving the most powerful or important truths, letting them be first or foremost among known facts. An example could be the instruction in Deuteronomy 6:4 to “Love the Lord with all our heart, all our soul and all our strength.”

In verse 7, Joseph brings Jacob to meet Pharaoh, "and Jacob blessed Pharaoh." This shows the sequence in our spiritual growth: our inmost spirit (Joseph) flows into intermediate truths (Jacob) which become present in the outermost part of us (Pharaoh).

Pharaoh asks Jacob his age, which shows a continuing interest on the part of our outer selves to learn about spiritual things. (Secrets of Heaven 6093).

In Verse 9, we read this:

"And Jacob said to Pharaoh, “The days of the years of my pilgrimage are one hundred and thirty years; few and evil have been the days of the years of my life, and they have not attained to the days of the years of the life of my fathers in the days of their pilgrimage.”

A pilgrimage is a journey for a spiritual end. Jacob’s has been full of temptations, producing inner feelings of anxiety and distress, which is why Jacob says his days have been “few and evil.” The natural person is particularly subjected to temptations when it is starting to receive the things of spiritual life. Evils of life and falsities of doctrine reside only in the outer or external part of us (Secrets of Heaven 6097).

Jacob’s blessing of Pharaoh, in verse 10, shows a heartfelt desire on the part of spiritual things to join natural ones. This will result in fruitfulness of life if we actually live according to inner dictates. The actuality of it has yet to be effected; so far there has only been an introduction to it. That Jacob “went out from Pharaoh” shows there still is some separation.

The following verses 17-27 deal with the actual joining together of spiritual with natural things. Joseph settles his father and brothers in the best land—an image of all the good and true things we receive from the innermost or celestial (Joseph) as it flows into the natural part of us. Then a true “church” can exist, a “church” being the place inside us where the things of the Lord are known (Secrets of Heaven 10761). That the natural acquiesces to this conjunction is shown by Pharaoh having commanded for Joseph’s family to be settled in the best land.

Joseph's providing for his father and brothers again shows the flow of good from the inmost or deepest level into the middle or spiritual level, and then into the outermost or natural levels of a person.

“According to their families.” Families, especially children, signify innocence, or a willingness to be led—here to receive this spiritual influx.

“No bread in the land” symbolizes what happens to us when we don't receive this inflowing spiritual good from an inner connection with the Lord. Even knowledges of spiritual things (represented by “Egypt" and “Canaan”) get desperate.

Joseph gathers up all the money found in Egypt and Canaan. This represents that all the factual knowledge of the Church that had truth in it, represented here by the money, was now being subordinated to the innermost or deepest part of ourselves, the part closest to Lord and His leading. It was no longer going to be spurious or falsified because of being subject to our own evil loves and self-serving "truths," or things in our outer self only.

When the money failed in the land, all the Egyptians came to Joseph and said, “Give us bread, for why should we die in your presence?” This happens when our life is so devastated that we no longer know anything, or have any truth, that leads to good. Even what we thought were our knowledges of truth and good have failed. This is because they came from ourselves and therefore were not life-giving. All of our being needs to turn toward the deepest of inner things, represented by Joseph.

In verse 16, Joseph says, “Give your livestock, and I will give you bread for your livestock, if the money is gone.” This sounds sort of harsh but, again, we need to look at the inner meaning. Giving livestock for bread shows that truths need to be filled in with good. In other words, it is no longer good enough to know truths for their own sake; they must serve good or have good within them. That can only be done by living according to them. We can't just know things. And we can’t do good from ourselves.

The Egyptians bring their livestock to Joseph and exchange them for bread. We bring the lesser things in our lives under the direction or control of our inmost spiritual selves. “Horses” represent things of our understanding; “flocks,” inner truths that contain good; “herds,” more external truths; and “donkeys,” things of our outermost self that serve inner things. Joseph's feeding them corresponds to how our outer self is sustained and given life by an inflow from inner things.

In verses 18 and 19, things are getting much more serious. “When that year ended” means that a new state is beginning and the previous one has ended. “We will not hide from my lord” shows that our outermost self is now fully aware that it can only be helped by an inflow from deepest or inmost things. Nothing being left “but our bodies and our lands” shows the utter desolation our outer self, completely lacking any knowledge of good, or the true things that lead to good. This desolation comes from trying to live in the outer or bodily self without any influx from the inner or spiritual parts of ourselves (Secrets of Heaven 6108).

“Why should we die” shows how our outer self gets more and more desperate. We realize that we can’t be helped by anything external. Our desperation drives us finally to submit to Joseph, to inward love and wisdom that the Lord is trying to send to us.

The people are asking for seed. This is a sign that there can now be an inflow of charitable good and truth, because our outer self has become humbled and is willing to give up thinking it does things entirely on its own. It stops blocking the Lord's influx, fighting it, or twisting it into falsities. With help from "Joseph", we no longer have to fear the damnation which was close at hand. “That the land may not be desolate” shows that now our minds can be cultivated with true things of the church, the “church” being the place inside a person where things from the Lord are known (Secrets of Heaven 10761).

In verse 20, “Joseph bought all the land of Egypt for Pharoah” directly corresponds to the way that our inmost self, conjoined with the Lord, now governs the whole natural mind. We're no longer struggling on our own because of our self-centeredness. An example can be seen in a person who is destroying his or her life with an addiction, but who gets a realization of how bad things are, and slowly stops drinking drink or doing the drug, eventually getting away from it entirely, and becoming healed.

Joseph moves the people into the cities, throughout Egypt. Cities correspond to doctrines which are organized sets of truths. Moving people into cities corresponds to the way that our inmost mind is now directing our thoughts into areas where there are knowledges that hold truths within them.

Joseph doesn't buy the priests' land. Here Pharaoh’s priests represent the capacity to receive good that exists only from the inner levels flowing outward, not from anything that exists externally of itself (Secrets of Heaven 6148). “The priests having rations from Pharaoh all along” shows how important these capacities are. “Therefore they did not sell their lands” shows that those parts of us never did things on their own without inner guidance.

Joseph giving the people seed, in verse 23, describes the way that our inmost spiritual self is excited at being joined with natural things. It quickly distributes truths throughout it from which spiritual things can grow. The excitement here is parallel to the excitement Joseph felt when he first saw that his brothers came to Egypt to buy grain (Genesis 43).

In verse 24, there's an interesting division of the yield of the seed: “And it shall come to pass in the harvest that you shall give one-fifth to Pharaoh. Four-fifths shall be your own, as seed for the field and for your food, for those of your households, and as food for your little ones.”

As things of good and truth start to grow, the natural or outer part of us needs to constantly acknowledge that its good comes from somewhere other than itself. Giving one-fifth to Pharoah accomplishes that. Tithing, or giving a percentage of one’s salary to the church, is reminiscent of this. The people were able to keep four-fifths of the produce as their own, showing that there will still be lots of things we think and feel where it seems like they originate from ourselves. In the reality of spiritual life, though, they actually are coming from the Lord. The difference is that we do them “as of ourself” or “as if” they originate from us. “Your little ones” shows that when it is done this way, the person will be innocent or without fault.

In verse 25, the people are grateful. “You have saved our lives; let us find favor in the sight of my lord, and we will be Pharaoh’s servants.” Our outer self starts with pride, self-centeredness, and some delusions that lead to a disconnectedness from the Lord's love and wisdom. But now, after hardship, temptation, and spiritual famine, we've made the decision to allow the Lord to flow into our minds, and to be governed by real love and wisdom. And now, finally, our outer self is grateful. To “find favor in the sight of my lord” shows a willingness to be led in this way.

We need to give consent in order for spiritual things to flow in; they will not be forced on us. When we give consent, we're on the road to having our whole life be nourished. The parallel to Joseph’s law is that we need to always respond to the prompting of inner leading. “To this day” means forever. “That Pharaoh should have one-fifth” shows that the Lord just wants us to acknowledge Him. He still wants us to have freedom, and the feeling that we do things on our own, signified by the four-fifths the people keep. And at the same time, for the sake of our spiritual life we need to remember the Lord and recognize that our life comes from Him.

The Children of Israel thrive in Goshen. Spiritual good is present with the person now. “Israel” means spiritual good, different now from “Jacob,” which means natural truth. “In the country of Goshen”—the spiritual good is in the middle or best part of the natural. That Joseph’s family “grew and multiplied exceedingly” shows that goods and truths were being formed and shared with the natural, and the outermost part of us is responding to them (Secrets of Heaven 6172).

In the last few verses, the focus is on Jacob, and his impending death. Swedenborg says that Jacob living one hundred and forty-seven years is not easy to explain. The “numbers contain the entire state of reality represented by ‘Jacob’ and its essential nature” (Secrets of Heaven 6175). As for one hundred and forty-seven, it probably has something to do with “forty” meaning “temptations” (as seen in the story of Noah), and “seven” meaning “completeness."

Israel calls Joseph to his side. As Israel dies, deeper things are present, because ‘Joseph’ represents inmost things. “Now if I have found favor in your sight” shows the desire on the part of our outer self for inner things to predominate. “Please put your hand under my thigh.” This was a way of expressing a sacred bond, the “hand” having to do with power in outer things and the “thigh” with things of heavenly married love. (Think of the sacred bond which is made at weddings.) That we are reaching a state of humility is shown in Israel’s request for Joseph to “deal kindly and truly with me.” Not wanting to be buried in Egypt indicates the desire to dwell in things of the spirit, i.e., heaven, and not be left only in knowledges of them, which are in our outermost self (Secrets of Heaven 6181).

30. “’But let me lie with my fathers. You shall carry me out of Egypt and bury me in their burial place.’ And Joseph said, ‘I will do as you have said.’ Then Jacob said, ‘Swear to me.’ And Joseph swore to him. So Israel bowed himself on the head of the bed.”

Jacob's lying with his fathers represents our desire, when opening to inner things, to live the type of spiritual life that the earliest people on earth had. They lived in spiritual innocence. Carrying Jacob “out of Egypt” corresponds to being carried out of knowledges only. (See Secrets of Heaven 6183).

Swearing a vow is a sacred thing, an unchangeable agreement to do something. The “head of the bed” is the part that is higher up when compared to the rest of the bed and “bowing oneself” indicates humility. This shows that natural truth meant by “Jacob” was raised to “spiritual good” meant by “Israel” (Secrets of Heaven 6188). The intention of the Lord in all this has been to join with us by flowing in and giving us the capacities to live according to heavenly truths. Knowledge is not enough; understanding is not enough; only living according to spiritual things will do.

   Studovat vnitřní smysl

Exploring the Meaning of Genesis 47      

Napsal(a) Helen Kennedy

This chapter continues the "Joseph story." Joseph’s family has come to Egypt to escape the famine in Canaan. Joseph is thrilled to have them with him, especially his father, Jacob, and he gives them land in Goshen, the best part of Egypt. Pharaoh welcomes them, too, asking Joseph’s brothers about their work, and talking with Jacob, too.

In verses 1-6, Pharaoh corresponds here to external, scientific knowledge, while Joseph includes also the inner enlightenment that flows from the deepest things (Secrets of Heaven 6062). Without this influx our natural level does not have any life, for it is totally devoid of life on its own. Life comes to us directly from the Lord, and this chapter gives a glimpse of how the Lord creates life in us (Secrets of Heaven 6063).

When Joseph brings five of his brothers to meet Pharaoh, this means that some truths, meant by “five,” flowing from heaven reached into the natural part of us where factual things (Pharaoh) reside.

Pharaoh asks about their occupation, and they tell him that they are shepherds, as were their fathers. Here the natural part of us becomes aware of new things flowing in from the spiritual depths. It wonders what good these new insights will lead to. Since shepherds tend sheep that are innocently led, it follows that Joseph’s brothers represent truths that lead to innocence. In all innocence there is good from the Lord.

Truth and knowledge sustain the human soul just as food does the body, but famine represents a severe lack of it. When we are regenerating or being made spiritual, we have a desire for knowledge and wisdom, and when we don’t find it, we are desolate, listless, and famished. Goshen is the best land in Egypt; living in it symbolizes that a person who is being regenerated has access to the types of natural knowledges that begin our heavenly instruction.

Pharaoh's generosity illustrates how the natural part of us starts perceiving some deeper things. Jacob’s father and brothers being permitted to dwell in “the best of the land” shows the delight that our external mind has in receiving insights from spiritual things. Any “competent men” or “energetic men” (the latter used in a different translation) signifies that the outermost part of us is perceiving the most powerful or important truths, letting them be first or foremost among known facts. An example could be the instruction in Deuteronomy 6:4 to “Love the Lord with all our heart, all our soul and all our strength.”

In verse 7, Joseph brings Jacob to meet Pharaoh, "and Jacob blessed Pharaoh." This shows the sequence in our spiritual growth: our inmost spirit (Joseph) flows into intermediate truths (Jacob) which become present in the outermost part of us (Pharaoh).

Pharaoh asks Jacob his age, which shows a continuing interest on the part of our outer selves to learn about spiritual things. (Secrets of Heaven 6093).

In Verse 9, we read this:

"And Jacob said to Pharaoh, “The days of the years of my pilgrimage are one hundred and thirty years; few and evil have been the days of the years of my life, and they have not attained to the days of the years of the life of my fathers in the days of their pilgrimage.”

A pilgrimage is a journey for a spiritual end. Jacob’s has been full of temptations, producing inner feelings of anxiety and distress, which is why Jacob says his days have been “few and evil.” The natural person is particularly subjected to temptations when it is starting to receive the things of spiritual life. Evils of life and falsities of doctrine reside only in the outer or external part of us (Secrets of Heaven 6097).

Jacob’s blessing of Pharaoh, in verse 10, shows a heartfelt desire on the part of spiritual things to join natural ones. This will result in fruitfulness of life if we actually live according to inner dictates. The actuality of it has yet to be effected; so far there has only been an introduction to it. That Jacob “went out from Pharaoh” shows there still is some separation.

The following verses 17-27 deal with the actual joining together of spiritual with natural things. Joseph settles his father and brothers in the best land—an image of all the good and true things we receive from the innermost or celestial (Joseph) as it flows into the natural part of us. Then a true “church” can exist, a “church” being the place inside us where the things of the Lord are known (Secrets of Heaven 10761). That the natural acquiesces to this conjunction is shown by Pharaoh having commanded for Joseph’s family to be settled in the best land.

Joseph's providing for his father and brothers again shows the flow of good from the inmost or deepest level into the middle or spiritual level, and then into the outermost or natural levels of a person.

“According to their families.” Families, especially children, signify innocence, or a willingness to be led—here to receive this spiritual influx.

“No bread in the land” symbolizes what happens to us when we don't receive this inflowing spiritual good from an inner connection with the Lord. Even knowledges of spiritual things (represented by “Egypt" and “Canaan”) get desperate.

Joseph gathers up all the money found in Egypt and Canaan. This represents that all the factual knowledge of the Church that had truth in it, represented here by the money, was now being subordinated to the innermost or deepest part of ourselves, the part closest to Lord and His leading. It was no longer going to be spurious or falsified because of being subject to our own evil loves and self-serving "truths," or things in our outer self only.

When the money failed in the land, all the Egyptians came to Joseph and said, “Give us bread, for why should we die in your presence?” This happens when our life is so devastated that we no longer know anything, or have any truth, that leads to good. Even what we thought were our knowledges of truth and good have failed. This is because they came from ourselves and therefore were not life-giving. All of our being needs to turn toward the deepest of inner things, represented by Joseph.

In verse 16, Joseph says, “Give your livestock, and I will give you bread for your livestock, if the money is gone.” This sounds sort of harsh but, again, we need to look at the inner meaning. Giving livestock for bread shows that truths need to be filled in with good. In other words, it is no longer good enough to know truths for their own sake; they must serve good or have good within them. That can only be done by living according to them. We can't just know things. And we can’t do good from ourselves.

The Egyptians bring their livestock to Joseph and exchange them for bread. We bring the lesser things in our lives under the direction or control of our inmost spiritual selves. “Horses” represent things of our understanding; “flocks,” inner truths that contain good; “herds,” more external truths; and “donkeys,” things of our outermost self that serve inner things. Joseph's feeding them corresponds to how our outer self is sustained and given life by an inflow from inner things.

In verses 18 and 19, things are getting much more serious. “When that year ended” means that a new state is beginning and the previous one has ended. “We will not hide from my lord” shows that our outermost self is now fully aware that it can only be helped by an inflow from deepest or inmost things. Nothing being left “but our bodies and our lands” shows the utter desolation our outer self, completely lacking any knowledge of good, or the true things that lead to good. This desolation comes from trying to live in the outer or bodily self without any influx from the inner or spiritual parts of ourselves (Secrets of Heaven 6108).

“Why should we die” shows how our outer self gets more and more desperate. We realize that we can’t be helped by anything external. Our desperation drives us finally to submit to Joseph, to inward love and wisdom that the Lord is trying to send to us.

The people are asking for seed. This is a sign that there can now be an inflow of charitable good and truth, because our outer self has become humbled and is willing to give up thinking it does things entirely on its own. It stops blocking the Lord's influx, fighting it, or twisting it into falsities. With help from "Joseph", we no longer have to fear the damnation which was close at hand. “That the land may not be desolate” shows that now our minds can be cultivated with true things of the church, the “church” being the place inside a person where things from the Lord are known (Secrets of Heaven 10761).

In verse 20, “Joseph bought all the land of Egypt for Pharoah” directly corresponds to the way that our inmost self, conjoined with the Lord, now governs the whole natural mind. We're no longer struggling on our own because of our self-centeredness. An example can be seen in a person who is destroying his or her life with an addiction, but who gets a realization of how bad things are, and slowly stops drinking drink or doing the drug, eventually getting away from it entirely, and becoming healed.

Joseph moves the people into the cities, throughout Egypt. Cities correspond to doctrines which are organized sets of truths. Moving people into cities corresponds to the way that our inmost mind is now directing our thoughts into areas where there are knowledges that hold truths within them.

Joseph doesn't buy the priests' land. Here Pharaoh’s priests represent the capacity to receive good that exists only from the inner levels flowing outward, not from anything that exists externally of itself (Secrets of Heaven 6148). “The priests having rations from Pharaoh all along” shows how important these capacities are. “Therefore they did not sell their lands” shows that those parts of us never did things on their own without inner guidance.

Joseph giving the people seed, in verse 23, describes the way that our inmost spiritual self is excited at being joined with natural things. It quickly distributes truths throughout it from which spiritual things can grow. The excitement here is parallel to the excitement Joseph felt when he first saw that his brothers came to Egypt to buy grain (Genesis 43).

In verse 24, there's an interesting division of the yield of the seed: “And it shall come to pass in the harvest that you shall give one-fifth to Pharaoh. Four-fifths shall be your own, as seed for the field and for your food, for those of your households, and as food for your little ones.”

As things of good and truth start to grow, the natural or outer part of us needs to constantly acknowledge that its good comes from somewhere other than itself. Giving one-fifth to Pharoah accomplishes that. Tithing, or giving a percentage of one’s salary to the church, is reminiscent of this. The people were able to keep four-fifths of the produce as their own, showing that there will still be lots of things we think and feel where it seems like they originate from ourselves. In the reality of spiritual life, though, they actually are coming from the Lord. The difference is that we do them “as of ourself” or “as if” they originate from us. “Your little ones” shows that when it is done this way, the person will be innocent or without fault.

In verse 25, the people are grateful. “You have saved our lives; let us find favor in the sight of my lord, and we will be Pharaoh’s servants.” Our outer self starts with pride, self-centeredness, and some delusions that lead to a disconnectedness from the Lord's love and wisdom. But now, after hardship, temptation, and spiritual famine, we've made the decision to allow the Lord to flow into our minds, and to be governed by real love and wisdom. And now, finally, our outer self is grateful. To “find favor in the sight of my lord” shows a willingness to be led in this way.

We need to give consent in order for spiritual things to flow in; they will not be forced on us. When we give consent, we're on the road to having our whole life be nourished. The parallel to Joseph’s law is that we need to always respond to the prompting of inner leading. “To this day” means forever. “That Pharaoh should have one-fifth” shows that the Lord just wants us to acknowledge Him. He still wants us to have freedom, and the feeling that we do things on our own, signified by the four-fifths the people keep. And at the same time, for the sake of our spiritual life we need to remember the Lord and recognize that our life comes from Him.

The Children of Israel thrive in Goshen. Spiritual good is present with the person now. “Israel” means spiritual good, different now from “Jacob,” which means natural truth. “In the country of Goshen”—the spiritual good is in the middle or best part of the natural. That Joseph’s family “grew and multiplied exceedingly” shows that goods and truths were being formed and shared with the natural, and the outermost part of us is responding to them (Secrets of Heaven 6172).

In the last few verses, the focus is on Jacob, and his impending death. Swedenborg says that Jacob living one hundred and forty-seven years is not easy to explain. The “numbers contain the entire state of reality represented by ‘Jacob’ and its essential nature” (Secrets of Heaven 6175). As for one hundred and forty-seven, it probably has something to do with “forty” meaning “temptations” (as seen in the story of Noah), and “seven” meaning “completeness."

Israel calls Joseph to his side. As Israel dies, deeper things are present, because ‘Joseph’ represents inmost things. “Now if I have found favor in your sight” shows the desire on the part of our outer self for inner things to predominate. “Please put your hand under my thigh.” This was a way of expressing a sacred bond, the “hand” having to do with power in outer things and the “thigh” with things of heavenly married love. (Think of the sacred bond which is made at weddings.) That we are reaching a state of humility is shown in Israel’s request for Joseph to “deal kindly and truly with me.” Not wanting to be buried in Egypt indicates the desire to dwell in things of the spirit, i.e., heaven, and not be left only in knowledges of them, which are in our outermost self (Secrets of Heaven 6181).

30. “’But let me lie with my fathers. You shall carry me out of Egypt and bury me in their burial place.’ And Joseph said, ‘I will do as you have said.’ Then Jacob said, ‘Swear to me.’ And Joseph swore to him. So Israel bowed himself on the head of the bed.”

Jacob's lying with his fathers represents our desire, when opening to inner things, to live the type of spiritual life that the earliest people on earth had. They lived in spiritual innocence. Carrying Jacob “out of Egypt” corresponds to being carried out of knowledges only. (See Secrets of Heaven 6183).

Swearing a vow is a sacred thing, an unchangeable agreement to do something. The “head of the bed” is the part that is higher up when compared to the rest of the bed and “bowing oneself” indicates humility. This shows that natural truth meant by “Jacob” was raised to “spiritual good” meant by “Israel” (Secrets of Heaven 6188). The intention of the Lord in all this has been to join with us by flowing in and giving us the capacities to live according to heavenly truths. Knowledge is not enough; understanding is not enough; only living according to spiritual things will do.

Swedenborg

Hlavní výklad ze Swedenborgových prací:

Arcana Coelestia 6059, 6060, 6061, 6069, 6070, 6071, 6088, ...


Další odkazy Swedenborga k této kapitole:

Arcana Coelestia 1463, 2838, 2916, 4286, 5973, 6062, 6063, ...

Apocalypse Revealed 137


Odkazy ze Swedenborgových nevydaných prací:

Apocalypse Explained 548

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Skočit na podobné biblické verše

Genesis 14:19, 20, 21, 24:2, 25:7, 9, 28:22, 32:6, 41:30, 34, 36, 56, 57, 45:7, 10, 11, 18, 20, 46:3, 31, 33, 47:9, 28, 48:21, 50:5, 21, 24, 25

Exodus 1:11, 12:37

Leviticus 27:30

Numbers 18:21, 33:3

Deuteronomy 14:22, 26:12, 31:14, 16

Joshua 2:14, 14:13, 23:14

1 Kings 1:47, 2:1

1 Chronicles 29:15

Ezra 7:24

Nehemiah 5:2

Job 2:4, 14:1

Psalms 39:13

Proverbs 11:26

Isaiah 22:24

Hebrews 11:13, 21

James 4:14

Významy biblických slov

joseph
Joseph, Jacob’s eleventh son, is one of the favorite characters in the Bible, with his troubles, his triumphs over them, and his constant trust in...

cometh
As with common verbs in general, the meaning of “come” in the Bible is highly dependent on context – its meaning is determined largely by...

come
As with common verbs in general, the meaning of “come” in the Bible is highly dependent on context – its meaning is determined largely by...

declareth
To "declare" something means to say it formally, publicly and with emphasis; you might say what you think, but you only declare things you're sure...

pharaoh
'Pharaoh' signifies scientific ideas, or the natural principle in general. 'Pharaoh' signifies false ideas infesting the truth of the church. Pharaoh,' in Genesis 40, represents...

saith
As with many common verbs, the meaning of “to say” in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Who is speaking? Who is hearing? What...

father
Father in the Word means what is most interior, and in those things that are following the Lord's order, it means what is good. In...

brethren
Brethren (Gen. 27:29) signify the affections of good.

flock
'A herd,' as mentioned in Genesis 32:7, denotes exterior or natural good, and also not good things.

herd
'A herd,' as mentioned in Genesis 32:7, denotes exterior or natural good, and also not good things.

Land of Canaan
The land of Canaan' in the Word, means love, and consequently, the will of the celestial self.

land
Land' in the Word, denotes the church, for the things which signify the church also signify the things relating to the church, for these constitute...

canaan
Canaan signifies a worship in things external without internals, which arose out of the internal church corrupted, called Ham. Thus it is that Ham is...

goshen
‘The land of Goshen,’ as in Genesis 46:28, signifies the innermost parts of the natural mind.

five
Five also signifies all things of one part.

before
In most cases, the meaning of "before" is pretty straightforward, both as a way of assessing relative time, and in its use meaning "in someone's...

works
'Works,' as in Genesis 46:33, denote goods, because they are from the will, and anything from the will is either good or evil, but anything...

say
As with many common verbs, the meaning of “to say” in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Who is speaking? Who is hearing? What...

servants
“Servant” literally means “a person who serves another,"" and its meaning is similar in reference to the spiritual meaninngs of the Bible. Our lives in...

fathers
Father in the Word means what is most interior, and in those things that are following the Lord's order, it means what is good. In...

sojourn
There is a long history of using travel to round out an education, from the 19th-century “world tours” taken by Oxford and Cambridge graduates to...

pasture
Plants in the Bible generally represent facts, knowledge that can be gleaned from the world. Plants that can serve animals as food represent facts that...

dwell
Many people were nomadic in Biblical times, especially the times of the Old Testament, and lived in tents that could be struck, moved and re-raised...

speaketh
Like "say," the word "speak" refers to thoughts and feelings moving from our more internal spiritual levels to our more external ones – and ultimately...

egypt
In the Bible, Egypt means knowledge and the love of knowledge. In a good sense that means knowledge of truth from the Lord through the...

known
Like so many common verbs, the meaning of "know" in the Bible is varied and dependent on context. And in some cases – when it...

ability
The word used for 'activity,' or 'energy' as in Genesis 47:6, in Hebrew also means 'strength' and 'virtue,' which, in the internal sense, means something...

heads
Captains and Rulers (Jer. 51:23) signifies principal evils and falsities. Captains and Rulers (Ezek 33:6) signifies principal truths. See Chief Captains.

cattle
Animals in the Bible generally refer to spiritual activity, the things we actually do on a spiritual level. "Cattle," as typically used in the Bible,...

bringeth
As with common verbs in general, the meaning of “bring” is highly dependent on context, but in general it represents an introduction to a new...

Jacob
Jacob is told twice that his name will now be Israel. The first time is when he wrestles with an angel on his journey to...

stand
'To sit before Jehovah' is to be with Him, and so, it also means willing and acting from Him. 'To stand before Him,' is to...

blesseth
The Lord is perfect love expressed as perfect wisdom. He created us so that He could love us, could give us love and wisdom of...

days
The expression 'even to this day' or 'today' sometimes appears in the Word, as in Genesis 19:37-38, 22:14, 26:33, 32:32, 35:20, and 47:26. In a...

life
'Lives' is used in the plural, because of the will and understanding, and because these two lives make one.

sojournings
There is a long history of using travel to round out an education, from the 19th-century “world tours” taken by Oxford and Cambridge graduates to...

hundred
It's a landmark for a young child to count to 100; it sort of covers all the "ordinary" numbers. One hundred is obviously significant for...

thirty
'Thirty' has a twofold significance because it is is the product of five and six, and also three and ten. From five multiplied by six,...

evil
'Wickedness' signifies evil, and 'iniquity' signifies falsities.

giveth
Like other common verbs, the meaning of "give" in the Bible is affected by context: who is giving what to whom? In general, though, giving...

Rameses
'The land of Rameses,' as in Genesis 47:11, signifies the inmost of the spiritual principle in the natural mind.

commanded
To command is to give an order that something must be done, and is directed to an individual, or a group. It is an imperative,...

house
A "house" is essentially a container - for a person, for a family, for several families or even for a large group with shared interests...

bread
The word “bread” is used two ways in the Bible. In some cases it means actual bread; in others it stands for food in general....

mouth
In most cases, "mouth" in the Bible represents thought and logic, especially the kind of active, concrete thought that is connected with speech. The reason...

silver
'Silver,' in the internal sense of the Word, signifies truth, but also falsity. 'Silver' means the truth of faith, or the truth acquired from selfhood,...

found
Finding, or being found, can have different meanings in the Word, depending on the context. Here are two examples, From Arcana Coelestia 5756, 'Behold, the...

egyptians
In the Bible, Egypt means knowledge and the love of knowledge. In a good sense that means knowledge of truth from the Lord through the...

us
Angels do give us guidance, but they are mere helpers; the Lord alone governs us, through angels and spirits. Since angels have their assisting role,...

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

money
'Money' relates to truth.

give
Like other common verbs, the meaning of "give" in the Bible is affected by context: who is giving what to whom? In general, though, giving...

bring
As with common verbs in general, the meaning of “bring” is highly dependent on context, but in general it represents an introduction to a new...

horses
'A horse' signifies knowledges or understanding of the Word. In an opposite sense it signifies the understanding of the Word falsified by reasonings, and likewise...

asses
Donkeys signify the things relating to the self-intelligence of the sensual man; and camels, the things of self-intelligence in the natural man (Isa 30:6, 7.)

my lord
Characters in the Bible will often address others using the term “my lord,” and it seems to be no more than an expression of respect....

lord
In most cases, a "master" in the Bible refers to truth: knowledge, an understanding of the situation at hand, an understanding of the Lord's wishes,...

eyes
It’s common to say “I see” when we understand something. And indeed, “seeing” in the Bible represents grasping and understanding spiritual things. So it makes...

ground
In Zechariah 8:12, 'the vine shall give her fruit, and the ground her increase,' signifies that the spiritual affection of truth produces the good of...

seed
'A seed' signifies love, and everyone who has love, as in Genesis 12:7. 8:15, 16. 'A seed' signifies faith grounded in charity. 'A seed' signifies...

sold
'To sell,' as in Genesis 41:56, means transferring to another as their own, because what is sold becomes the property of the one who buys...

field
A "field" in the Bible usually represents the Lord's church, and more specifically the desire for good within the church. It's where good things start,...

pharaoh's
'Pharaoh' signifies scientific ideas, or the natural principle in general. 'Pharaoh' signifies false ideas infesting the truth of the church. Pharaoh,' in Genesis 40, represents...

removed
As with many verbs, the meaning of "remove" in the Bible varies a good bit depending on context. It generally involves a separation of spiritual...

cities
Cities of the mountain and cities of the plain (Jeremiah 33:13) signify doctrines of charity and faith.

border
A 'hem,' 'skirt,' or 'border' signifies the extremes, or the natural principle.

priests
Priests' represent the Lord regarding His divine good. When they do not acknowledge the Lord, they lose their signification of the Lord.

eaten
When we eat, our bodies break down the food and get from it both energy and materials for building and repairing the body. The process...

given
Like other common verbs, the meaning of "give" in the Bible is affected by context: who is giving what to whom? In general, though, giving...

day
"Day" describes a state in which we are turned toward the Lord, and are receiving light (which is truth) and heat (which is a desire...

four
The number "four" in the Bible represents things being linked together or joined. This is partly because four is two times two, and two represents...

food
To give food, as in Genesis 41:48, signifies to store up.

houses
A "house" is essentially a container - for a person, for a family, for several families or even for a large group with shared interests...

find
Finding, or being found, can have different meanings in the Word, depending on the context. Here are two examples, From Arcana Coelestia 5756, 'Behold, the...

israel
Jacob is told twice that his name will now be Israel. The first time is when he wrestles with an angel on his journey to...

dwelleth
'Inhabit' refers to good.

fruitful
To be fruitful is predicated of goodnesses, and to be multiplied, of truths.

multiply
'Spreading themselves on the earth,' as in Genesis 8:17, signifies the internal self operating on the external.

seven
The number 'seven' was considered holy, as is well known, because of the six days of creation, and the seventh, which is the celestial self,...

seventeen
'Seventeen' signifies both the beginning and the end of temptation, because it is made up of the numbers seven and ten. This number, when it...

forty
'Forty' means completeness because 'four' means what is complete, as does 'ten.' Forty is the product of four and ten. Compound numbers have a meaning...

near
'Near,' in the Word, signifies presence and conjunction. 'To be near' signifies being on internal levels. Near,' as in Genesis 19:20, signifies truth bordering upon...

calleth
'To proclaim' signifies exploration from influx of the Lord.

son
'A son,' as in Genesis 5:28, signifies the rise of a new church. 'Son,' as in Genesis 24:3, signifies the Lord’s rationality regarding good. 'A...

Put
'To put' has reference to order, arrangement, application, and influx.

hand
Scientists believe that one of the most crucial developments in the evolution of humans was bipedalism – walking on two legs. That left our hands...

under
In the Bible, things that are lower down, or under, physically, generally represent things that are lower or more external spiritually. In some cases, the...

thigh
In Revelation 19:16, 'the Lord’s thigh' signifies the Word regarding its divine good. 'The thigh and loins' signify conjugial love, and because this is the...

kindness
In regular language, "mercy" means being caring and compassionate toward those who are in poor states. That's a position we are all in relative to...

truth
There's a great deal of talk in Swedenborg about "truth" as a concept – it's how we learn the Lord's will, what we must seek...

buried
'Being buried' or 'put into monuments' signifies resurrection and continuation of life.

word
'Word,' as in Psalms 119:6-17, stands for doctrine in general. 'The Word,' as in Psalms 147:18, signifies divine good united with divine truth. 'Word,' as...

swear
'To sware' is a binding.

boweth
To bow, as in Genesis 18:2 signifies to humble.

head
The head is the part of us that is highest, which means in a representative sense that it is what is closest to the Lord....

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 Joseph Welcomes His Family
Lesson outline provides teaching ideas with questions for discussion, projects, and activities.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 Submission to the Lord's Plan
Spiritual tasks offer a reflection on a Biblical story and suggest a task for spiritual growth.
Activity | Ages over 18


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