By Joe David
A congregation is a group of people with common loves, interests, and purposes. It often refers to a church group.
In the Word it is almost always used to speak of the whole group of the Children of Israel, as the tabernacle of the congregation, or the people of the congregation. Sometimes the original Hebrew is translated as assembly, too.
This is a case where readers and translators need to be aware of the context and potential nuances of meaning. Swedenborg writes that,'The congregation of the people' stands for those who are ruled by truths constituting intelligence, since 'congregation' is used with reference to truths... as also is 'people'... 'the assembly of the old' stands for those who are ruled by good.
The usage of the term congregation also implies an ordering, or arrangement of truths.