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Genesis 24

English: American Standard Version         

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1 And Abraham was old, [and] well stricken in age. And Jehovah had blessed Abraham in all things.

2 And Abraham said unto his servant, the elder of his house, that ruled over all that he had, Put, I pray thee, thy hand under my thigh.

3 And I will make thee swear by Jehovah, the God of heaven and the God of the earth, that thou wilt not take a wife for my son of the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I dwell.

4 But thou shalt go unto my country, and to my kindred, and take a wife for my son Isaac.

5 And the servant said unto him, Peradventure the woman will not be willing to follow me unto this land. Must I needs bring thy son again unto the land from whence thou camest?

6 And Abraham said unto him, Beware thou that thou bring not my son thither again.

7 Jehovah, the God of heaven, who took me from my father's house, and from the land of my nativity, and who spake unto me, and who sware unto me, saying, Unto thy seed will I give this land. He will send his angel before thee, and thou shalt take a wife for my son from thence.

8 And if the woman be not willing to follow thee, then thou shalt be clear from this my oath. Only thou shalt not bring my son thither again.

9 And the servant put his hand under the thigh of Abraham his master, and sware to him concerning this matter.

10 And the servant took ten camels, of the camels of his master, and departed, having all goodly things of his master's in his hand. And he arose, and went to Mesopotamia, unto the city of Nahor.

11 And he made the camels to kneel down without the city by the well of water at the time of evening, the time that women go out to draw water.

12 And he said, O Jehovah, the God of my master Abraham, send me, I pray thee, good speed this day, and show kindness unto my master Abraham.

13 Behold, I am standing by the fountain of water. And the daughters of the men of the city are coming out to draw water.

14 And let it come to pass, that the damsel to whom I shall say, Let down thy pitcher, I pray thee, that I may drink. And she shall say, Drink, and I will give thy camels drink also. Let the same be she that thou hast appointed for thy servant Isaac. And thereby shall I know that thou hast showed kindness unto my master.

15 And it came to pass, before he had done speaking, that, behold, Rebekah came out, who was born to Bethuel the son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham's brother, with her pitcher upon her shoulder.

16 And the damsel was very fair to look upon, a virgin, neither had any man known her. And she went down to the fountain, and filled her pitcher, and came up.

17 And the servant ran to meet her, and said, Give me to drink, I pray thee, a little water from thy pitcher.

18 And she said, Drink, my lord. And she hasted, and let down her pitcher upon her hand, and gave him drink.

19 And when she had done giving him drink, she said, I will draw for thy camels also, until they have done drinking.

20 And she hasted, and emptied her pitcher into the trough, and ran again unto the well to draw, and drew for all his camels.

21 And the man looked stedfastly on her, holding his peace, to know whether Jehovah had made his journey prosperous or not.

22 And it came to pass, as the camels had done drinking, that the man took a golden ring of half a shekel weight, and two bracelets for her hands of ten shekels weight of gold,

23 and said, Whose daughter art thou? Tell me, I pray thee. Is there room in thy father's house for us to lodge in?

24 And she said unto him, I am the daughter of Bethuel the son of Milcah, whom she bare unto Nahor.

25 She said moreover unto him, We have both straw and provender enough, and room to lodge in.

26 And the man bowed his head, and worshipped Jehovah.

27 And he said, Blessed be Jehovah, the God of my master Abraham, who hath not forsaken his lovingkindness and his truth toward my master. As for me, Jehovah hath led me in the way to the house of my master's brethren.

28 And the damsel ran, and told her mother's house according to these words.

29 And Rebekah had a brother, and his name was Laban: and Laban ran out unto the man, unto the fountain.

30 And it came to pass, when he saw the ring, and the bracelets upon his sister's hands, and when he heard the words of Rebekah his sister, saying, Thus spake the man unto me. That he came unto the man. And, behold, he was standing by the camels at the fountain.

31 And he said, Come in, thou blessed of Jehovah. Wherefore standest thou without? For I have prepared the house, and room for the camels.

32 And the man came into the house, and he ungirded the camels. And he gave straw and provender for the camels, and water to wash his feet and the feet of the men that were with him.

33 And there was set food before him to eat. But he said, I will not eat, until I have told mine errand. And he said, Speak on.

34 And he said, I am Abraham's servant.

35 And Jehovah hath blessed my master greatly. And he is become great. And he hath given him flocks and herds, and silver and gold, and men-servants and maid-servants, and camels and asses.

36 And Sarah my master's wife bare a son to my master when she was old. And unto him hath he given all that he hath.

37 And my master made me swear, saying, Thou shalt not take a wife for my son of the daughters of the Canaanites, in whose land I dwell.

38 But thou shalt go unto my father's house, and to my kindred, and take a wife for my son.

39 And I said unto my master, Peradventure the woman will not follow me.

40 And he said unto me, Jehovah, before whom I walk, will send his angel with thee, and prosper thy way. And thou shalt take a wife for my son of my kindred, and of my father's house.

41 Then shalt thou be clear from my oath, when thou comest to my kindred. And if they give her not to thee, thou shalt be clear from my oath.

42 And I came this day unto the fountain, and said, O Jehovah, the God of my master Abraham, if now thou do prosper my way which I go.

43 Behold, I am standing by the fountain of water. And let it come to pass, that the maiden that cometh forth to draw, to whom I shall say, Give me, I pray thee, a little water from thy pitcher to drink.

44 And she shall say to me, Both drink thou, and I will also draw for thy camels. Let the same be the woman whom Jehovah hath appointed for my master's son.

45 And before I had done speaking in my heart, behold, Rebekah came forth with her pitcher on her shoulder. And she went down unto the fountain, and drew. And I said unto her, Let me drink, I pray thee.

46 And she made haste, and let down her pitcher from her shoulder, and said, Drink, and I will give thy camels drink also. So I drank, and she made the camels drink also.

47 And I asked her, and said, Whose daughter art thou? And she said, The daughter of Bethuel, Nahor's son, whom Milcah bare unto him. And I put the ring upon her nose, and the bracelets upon her hands.

48 And I bowed my head, and worshipped Jehovah, and blessed Jehovah, the God of my master Abraham, who had led me in the right way to take my master's brother's daughter for his son.

49 And now if ye will deal kindly and truly with my master, tell me. And if not, tell me. That I may turn to the right hand, or to the left.

50 Then Laban and Bethuel answered and said, The thing proceedeth from Jehovah. We cannot speak unto thee bad or good.

51 Behold, Rebekah is before thee, take her, and go, and let her be thy master's son's wife, as Jehovah hath spoken.

52 And it came to pass, that, when Abraham's servant heard their words, he bowed himself down to the earth unto Jehovah.

53 And the servant brought forth jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment, and gave them to Rebekah. He gave also to her brother and to her mother precious things.

54 And they did eat and drink, he and the men that were with him, and tarried all night. And they rose up in the morning, and he said, Send me away unto my master.

55 And her brother and her mother said, Let the damsel abide with us [a few] days, at the least ten. After that she shall go.

56 And he said unto them, Hinder me not, seeing Jehovah hath prospered my way. Send me away that I may go to my master.

57 And they said, We will call the damsel, and inquire at her mouth.

58 And they called Rebekah, and said unto her, Wilt thou go with this man? And she said, I will go.

59 And they sent away Rebekah their sister, and her nurse, and Abraham's servant, and his men.

60 And they blessed Rebekah, and said unto her, Our sister, be thou [the mother] of thousands of ten thousands, and let thy seed possess the gate of those that hate them.

61 And Rebekah arose, and her damsels, and they rode upon the camels, and followed the man. And the servant took Rebekah, and went his way.

62 And Isaac came from the way of Beer-lahai-roi. For he dwelt in the land of the South.

63 And Isaac went out to meditate in the field at the eventide. And he lifted up his eyes, and saw, and, behold, there were camels coming.

64 And Rebekah lifted up her eyes, and when she saw Isaac, she alighted from the camel.

65 And she said unto the servant, What man is this that walketh in the field to meet us? And the servant said, It is my master. And she took her veil, and covered herself.

66 And the servant told Isaac all the things that he had done.

67 And Isaac brought her into his mother Sarah's tent, and took Rebekah, and she became his wife. And he loved her. And Isaac was comforted after his mother's death.

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Arcana Coelestia 1356, 1358, 1992, 2851, 2943, 2959, 3015, ...


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 600

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Word/Phrase Explanations

old
'Old waste places' signify the celestial aspects of faith.

Jehovah
The Lord, in the simplest terms, is love itself expressed as wisdom itself. In philosophic terms, love is the Lord's substance and wisdom is His...

blessed
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...

all things
The Lord is life itself, is the Creator of the universe, and is the source of life on an ongoing basis. So in a literal...

said
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...

elder
Elders are mentioned in the Bible mainly in two ways: First the elders of Israel: and second the 24 elders seated about the throne of...

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...

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

hand
In Genesis 27:22, 'voice' relates to truth, and 'hand,' to good.

under
Generally speaking things that are seen as lower physically in the Bible represent things that are lower or more external spiritually. In some cases this...

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...

Swear
The Lord swearing by himself signifies that divine truth testifies, for He is divine truth itself, and this testifies from itself and means itself. It...

god
The Lord is love itself, expressed in the form of wisdom itself. Love, then, is His essence, His inmost. Wisdom - the loving understanding of...

heaven
Heavens are celestial and spiritual things. Consequently, they are inmost things, both of the Lord's kingdom in heaven the and in the earth. This also...

earth
'Lands' of different nations are used in the Word to signify the different kinds of love prevalent in the inhabitants.

the daughters of
The daughters of Rabbah' signify people who are in natural good and falsify the truths of the church.

Daughters
"Behold I have two daughters,” etc. (Gen. 19:8), signifies the affections of good and truth, and the blessedness perceivable from the enjoyment thereof, by those...

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...

go
In the physical world, the places we inhabit and the distances between them are physical realities, and we have to get our physical bodies through...

country
Generally in the Bible a "country" means a political subdivision ruled by a king, or sometimes a tribe with a territory ruled by a king...

isaac
'Isaac' represents spiritual love. 'Isaac,' in Genesis 17:19, signifies the rational divine. 'Isaac' signifies the Lord's divine rational in reference to divine good. Isaac' signifies...

Woman
It is because of a celestial and angelic proprium, or selfhood, that the church is called 'a woman,' 'a wife,' 'a bride,' 'a virgin,' and...

follow
To go after or to follow, as in Genesis 24:8, signifies to be separated from the natural, and conjoined to the rational principle.

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...

nativity
'Nativity,' as in Genesis 10:32, signifies reformation. Out of thy nativity and out of thy father's house,' as in Genesis 12:1, signifies corporeal and worldly...

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...

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...

send
'Being sent' everywhere signifies, in an internal sense, going forth, as in John 17:8. In similar manner, it is said of the holy of the...

angel
'A messenger' signifies communication.

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...

Oath
An oath' or 'swearing' signifies confirmation and conjunction.

master
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,...

ten
Most places in Swedenborg identify “ten” as representing “all,” or in some cases “many” or “much.” The Ten Commandments represent all the guidance we get...

camels
A camel (Matt. 22:24) signifies scientific knowledge. Camels are confirming scientifics, and cattle are the knowledges of good and truth (Jer. 49:32.)

Goodly things
'Goodly things' signify truths and magnificent things derived from truths.

mesopotamia
'Mesopotamia' denotes knowledges of truth.

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

nahor
'Nahor,' as in Genesis 22:20, signifies the Lord’s church among the Gentiles.

well
In Genesis 21, 'wells' signify doctrines, both those disputed and not disputed. Without this significance digging wells and disputing about them would have been too...

water
'Waters' signify truths in the natural self, and in the opposite sense, falsities. 'Waters' signify particularly the spiritual parts of a person, or the intellectual...

time
Time is an aspect of the physical world, but according to Swedenborg is not an aspect of the spiritual world. The same is true of...

evening
Since the light and warmth of the sun represent the Lord’s wisdom and love, it makes sense that evening, a time when the light and...

Go out
To go out to meet, as in Genesis 14:17, signifies to submit themselves. To go out, as in Genesis 28:10, signifies to live more remotely....

show
'Shew' signifies instruction to the life.

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...

men
The relationship between men and women is deep and nuanced, and one entire book of the Writings – Conjugial Love or Love in Marriage –...

damsel
The damsel of Rebecca (Gen. 24:61) signifies subservient affections. See Daughter.

Pitcher
'A vial or pitcher' signifies what is contained in them.

know
In a general sense, men represent things of the intellect – facts, ideas, knowledge, everything from the deepest truths to the most pernicious falsities about...

rebekah
'Rebecca,' as in Genesis 24, signifies divine truth which would be joined to divine good of the Lord’s rational mind, which is 'Isaac.'

born
In a general sense, being "born" in the Bible represents one spiritual state producing another, usually some form of love or affection producing or "giving...

Bethuel
'Uz, Buz, Kemuel, Kesed, Haza, Pildash, Jidlaph, and Bethuel,' as in Genesis 22:22, 23, signify various religions and the kinds of worship practiced in them....

abraham's
Abraham (or Abram, as he is named in the beginning of his story) is one of the major characters in the story of the sacred...

upon
'Upon' or 'over' signifies being within.

down
"Down" is used many different ways in natural language, and its spiritual meaning in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Phrases like "bowing down,"...

filled
There are two ways something can be filled: It can be filled with something bad against the wishes of its owner, or it can be...

meet
In natural language, to "meet" someone can be positive or negative: it can be a welcoming and greeting, or it can be "meeting" them in...

drink
In Genesis 24:17 'to sip' signifies exploration if truth could be conjoined, because 'sipping' has a similar meaning as 'drinking,' but in a lesser sense.

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....

Let down
'To let down,' as in Genesis 24:18, signifies an act of submission.

drinking
To be drunken without wine (Isa. 29:9), are they who are unconcerned about the Word, and the truths of faith, and thus have no inclination...

trough
'A water-trough' signifies the doctrine of charity.

prosperous
'To be made to prosper' signifies being provided for. Which is why 'Jehovah made it prosper in his hand' means Divine Providence. 

golden
Gold means good, and just as gold was the most precious metal known to ancient mankind so it represents the good of the highest and...

two
The number "two" has two different meanings in the Bible. In most cases "two" indicates a joining together or unification. This is easy to see...

Bracelets
Bracelets (Gen. 25:22) signify truth, and in this passage divine truth, because the Lord is treated of.

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

Tell
'To tell' signifies perceiving, because in the spiritual world, or in heaven, they do not need to tell what they think because they communicate every...

Room
'A room' or 'place' denotes state.

us
Because people are governed by angels and spirits, in Genesis 1:26 it says 'let us make man into our image.' But because the Lord alone...

provender
To 'give straw and provender,' as in Genesis 24:32, signifies instruction in truths and goods.

Enough
'Sufficiency' relates to the reception of good, because good is the spiritual nourishment of the soul, as natural food is the nourishment of the body.

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

Led
'To be led by the Lord' is to be in a state of essential liberty, blessedness, and happiness.

Way
'To set a way,' as in Genesis 30:36, signifies being separated.

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

mother
In general, mothers in the Bible represent the Lord's church on earth, or the church among those who know and follow the Lord. In some...

name
It's easy to see that names are important in the Bible. Jehovah changed Abram and Sarai to Abraham and Sarah, changed Jacob to Israel and...

laban
'Laban' signifies the affection of good in the natural self, or the affection of external good, and properly collateral good of a common stock. The...

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

sister's
The Lord calls people who are in truth from the good of charity from Him 'sisters,' as in Matthew 12:50. 'Sister' denotes intellectual truth, when...

heard
Thanks to modern science, we now understand that hearing actually happens in the brain, not the ears. The ears collect vibrations in the air and...

standest
'To stand,' and 'come forth' as in Daniel 7:10, refers to truth. In Genesis 24:13, it signifies a state of conjunction of divine truth with...

wash
'Washing of the hands' was an ancient declaration of innocence, and signifies purification from evils and falsities, as in Psalms 73:13 and Matthew 27:24.

feet
Our feet are the lowest and most utilitarian parts of our bodies, and in the Bible they represent the lowest and most utilitarian part of...

eat
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...

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

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,...

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...

Maid-servants
'Maid-servants' signify the affections of the natural.

sarah
'Sarah' denotes truth joined to good. Sarai was called 'Sarah' so she would represent the divine intellectual principle by adding the 'H' from the name...

to
‘To grow’ signifies to be perfected.

heart
The heart means love. A good heart means love to the Lord and to the neighbor while a hard or stony heart means the love...

haste
'To hasten' or 'hastiness' in the internal sense, does not denote what is quick, but what is certain, and also what is full, thus every...

drank
Food in the Bible represents the desire for good, and water and other drinks represent the understanding and true ideas we need to recognize what...

Nose
'A nose' signifies the life of good, because of the respiration which happens through it, which is life in the internal sense, and because of...

truly
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...

turn
Swedenborg says that the Lord is the sun of heaven, and like the natural sun of our world shines on everyone, good or evil. What...

Right hand
'The man of the right hand,' as in Psalm 80:17, signifies the Lord with respect to the Word. He is called 'the man of the...

answered
To "answer" generally indicates a state of spiritual receptivity. Ultimately this means being receptive to the Lord, who is constantly trying to pour true ideas...

good
It seems rather circular to say that “good” in the Bible represents good, but in a general sense it’s true! The case is this: The...

son's wife
'Sons' wives,' as in Genesis 6:18, signify truths joined to goods.

son's
'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...

jewels
Jewels' when applied to the ears, signify good in act.

Raiment
Soft raiment,' as in Matthew 11:9, represents the internal sense of the Word.

Precious things
'Precious things,' as in Genesis 24:53, signify spiritual things.

rose
It is common in the Bible for people to "rise up," and it would be easy to pass over the phrase as simply describing a...

morning
Morning comes with the rising of the sun, and the sun – which gives life to the earth with its warmth and light – represents...

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...

the least
'Tittle' or 'the least' in the Word represents heavenly things.

after
According to Swedenborg, time and space don’t exist in spiritual reality; they are purely natural things that exist only on the physical plane. This means...

seeing
The symbolic meaning of "seeing" is "understanding," which is obvious enough that it has become part of common language (think about it; you might see...

Call
To call someone or summon someone in the Bible represents a desire for conjunction between higher and lower states of life. For instance, imagine someone...

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...

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

sent away
To "send away" means creating a separation of spiritual states. This phrase is used a great deal in Exodus, when Moses repeatedly calls on Pharaoh...

Nurse
'The nurse,' in Genesis 24:59, signifies a state of innocence. 'The nurse,' in Genesis 35, signifies hereditary evil. 'A nurse,' as she feeds and nurses...

thousands
As children, most of us at some point frustrated our mothers into using the phrase “if I've told you once, I've told you a thousand...

gate
"Gates" in ancient times had a significance that does not hold in the modern world. Cities then were enclosed by walls for protection; gates in...

hate
If you truly hate someone, that means you would kill them and destroy their reputation if you could do so without repercussion – not a...

south
'South' denotes truth in light.

Meditate in the field
'To meditate in the field,' as in Genesis 24:63, signifies thinking rationally in a state of good.

field
When we have a desire to be good people and to do good things, the natural first questions are "What does that mean?" "What should...

lifted
The idea of "lifting" is used in a number of different ways in the Bible. In general, it means connecting with a higher spiritual state...

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...

coming
Coming (Gen. 41:14) denotes communication by influx.

walketh
To walk in the Bible represents living, and usually means living according to the true things taught to us by the Lord -- to "walk...

Veil
'A veil,' as in Genesis 38:19, signifies obscurity of the truth. The first vail of the tabernacle, which was the screen in front of the...

Tent
'Tent' is used in the Word to signify the celestial and holy aspects of love, because in ancient time they performed holy worship in their...

loved
To some degree, there really is no spiritual meaning to the word “love” in the Bible. Why? Because if you truly love another, that is...

comforted
When the Bible talks about someone being comforted or consoled, it generally means that they are being offered ideas that will help bring them to...

Resources for parents and teachers

The items listed here are provided courtesy of our friends at the General Church of the New Jerusalem. You can search/browse their whole library by following this link.


 Conjugial Love
Article | Ages 15 - 17

 Correspondences of Water
Illustration of places in the Word that relate to water.
Coloring Page | Ages 7 - 14

 Family Worship: The Story of Isaac and Rebekah
Ideas for reading and discussing the story of Isaac and Rebekah in Genesis 24. Includes suggestions for extending the experience such as dramatizing parts of the story.
Religion Lesson | Ages 3 - 12

 Gifts for a Bride
The story includes two love stories: Isaac and Rebekah, and a beautiful wedding Swedenborg witnessed in heaven.
Story | Ages 4 - 8

 Isaac and Rebekah
A New Church Bible story explanation for teaching Sunday school. Includes lesson materials for Primary (3-8 years), Junior (9-11 years), Intermediate (12-14 years), Senior (15-17 years) and Adults.
Teaching Support | Ages over 3

 Isaac and Rebekah
A lesson for younger children with discussion ideas and a project.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 4 - 6

 Isaac and Rebekah Marry
This lesson discusses a story from the Word and suggests projects and activities for young children.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 4 - 6

 Isaac Greets Rebekah
Drawing of Isaac greeting Rebekah after her journey.
Coloring Page | Ages 7 - 14

 Isaac Marries Rebekah
Lesson outline provides teaching ideas with questions for discussion, projects, and activities.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 Isaac Meets Rebekah
Coloring Page | Ages 7 - 14

 Marriage & Consent
Consent is more than a person saying "yes" to a marriage proposal. It sets the stage for asking and giving consent throughout a marriage.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 11 - 17

 Preparing for Marriage
Lesson and activities to explore ways we can prepare for a loving marriage.
Religion Lesson | Ages over 15

 Protecting Marriage
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

 Puppet Play: Isaac and Rebekah
Activity | Ages 7 - 14

 Quotes: Marriage Is a Gift from God
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Arcana Coelestia # 3020

Arcana Coelestia (Elliott translation)      

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3020. 'Who administered all that he had' means the functions of the natural man. This is clear from the meaning of 'administering', and in particular of 'administering all things', as performing functions or duties. The relationship of the natural man to the rational, or what amounts to the same, of the external man to the internal, is like that of one who administers in a house, see 1795. All things in man are like one house, that is, one family, for there is one who has the duty to be head of the family, and others who have the duty of servants. The rational mind itself is the one that organizes everything, like the head of the family, and by influx brings order into the natural mind. The natural mind however is one that serves and administers. And because the natural mind is distinct and separate from the rational mind, existing on a level below the latter, and also in a sense acts independently, it is called in relationship to the rational 'the servant, the oldest of the house' and 'the one who administered all that he had there'.

[2] The fact that the natural mind is distinct and separate from the rational, existing on a level below it, and in a sense acting independently, becomes clear from the things it has within it, and from the functions it performs. The things it has within it are all facts, and so also all cognitions of every kind - in short, every single thing belonging to the exterior or physical memory, dealt with in 2471, 2480. To this memory also belongs the whole faculty of imagination, which constitutes man's interior sensory awareness and is particularly active with children and during the early stages of adolescence. To the exterior memory belong in addition all the natural affections which man has in common with animals. From this it is evident what the functions of the natural mind are.

[3] The rational mind however is interior. The items of knowledge it has within it, that is to say, every single thing belonging to the interior memory, are not evident to man, but are imperceptible during his lifetime, dealt with in 2470-2474, 2489, 2490. It also has within it the power of thought, which is a perceptivity of what is fair and righteous, as well as of what is true and good. In addition it has all the spiritual affections which are strictly human and which mark man off from animals. From these things within itself the rational mind flows into the natural mind and activates the things that are there, views them with a certain vision, and in this way forms judgements and conclusions. The fact that these two minds are distinct and separate is quite evident from this consideration: With many people the natural mind has dominion over the rational mind, or what amounts to the same, the external man has dominion over the internal; yet it does not have dominion and is subservient only with those in whom the good of charity is present, that is, who allow themselves to be led by the Lord.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 2489-2490, Genesis 24:2)

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From Swedenborg's Works

Inbound References:

Arcana Coelestia 3029, 3048, 3143, 3163, 3169, 3184, 3209, 3409, 3721, 4037, 4264, 4266, 5161, 5435, 7998, 8890, 9034, 9081, 9776, 9922, 10235

The New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine 48, 51


Thanks to the Swedenborg Society for the permission to use this translation.


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