Ezekiel 37

English: King James Version         

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1 The hand of the LORD was upon me, and carried me out in the spirit of the LORD, and set me down in the midst of the valley which was full of bones,

2 And caused me to pass by them round about: and, behold, there were very many in the open valley; and, lo, they were very dry.

3 And he said unto me, Son of man, can these bones live? And I answered, O Lord GOD, thou knowest.

4 Again he said unto me, Prophesy upon these bones, and say unto them, O ye dry bones, hear the word of the LORD.

5 Thus saith the Lord GOD unto these bones; Behold, I will cause breath to enter into you, and ye shall live:

6 And I will lay sinews upon you, and will bring up flesh upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and ye shall live; and ye shall know that I am the LORD.

7 So I prophesied as I was commanded: and as I prophesied, there was a noise, and behold a shaking, and the bones came together, bone to his bone.

8 And when I beheld, lo, the sinews and the flesh came up upon them, and the skin covered them above: but there was no breath in them.

9 Then said he unto me, Prophesy unto the wind, prophesy, son of man, and say to the wind, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live.

10 So I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived, and stood up upon their feet, an exceeding great army.

11 Then he said unto me, Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel: behold, they say, Our bones are dried, and our hope is lost: we are cut off for our parts.

12 Therefore prophesy and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, O my people, I will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel.

13 And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I have opened your graves, O my people, and brought you up out of your graves,

14 And shall put my spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I shall place you in your own land: then shall ye know that I the LORD have spoken it, and performed it, saith the LORD.

15 The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying,

16 Moreover, thou son of man, take thee one stick, and write upon it, For Judah, and for the children of Israel his companions: then take another stick, and write upon it, For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and for all the house of Israel his companions:

17 And join them one to another into one stick; and they shall become one in thine hand.

18 And when the children of thy people shall speak unto thee, saying, Wilt thou not shew us what thou meanest by these?

19 Say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick, and they shall be one in mine hand.

20 And the sticks whereon thou writest shall be in thine hand before their eyes.

21 And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen, whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land:

22 And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all:

23 Neither shall they defile themselves any more with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions: but I will save them out of all their dwellingplaces, wherein they have sinned, and will cleanse them: so shall they be my people, and I will be their God.

24 And David my servant shall be king over them; and they all shall have one shepherd: they shall also walk in my judgments, and observe my statutes, and do them.

25 And they shall dwell in the land that I have given unto Jacob my servant, wherein your fathers have dwelt; and they shall dwell therein, even they, and their children, and their children's children for ever: and my servant David shall be their prince for ever.

26 Moreover I will make a covenant of peace with them; it shall be an everlasting covenant with them: and I will place them, and multiply them, and will set my sanctuary in the midst of them for evermore.

27 My tabernacle also shall be with them: yea, I will be their God, and they shall be my people.

28 And the heathen shall know that I the LORD do sanctify Israel, when my sanctuary shall be in the midst of them for evermore.

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Hlavní výklad ze Swedenborgových prací:

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 160

Další odkazy Swedenborga k této kapitole:

Arcana Coelestia 149, 666, 1038, 1292, 1888, 2547, 2916, ...

Apocalypse Revealed 3, 306, 343, 350, 510, 664, 774, ...

Divine Love and Wisdom 383

The Lord 28, 43, 47

Sacred Scripture 79

True Christianity 310, 534, 594, 844

References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 19, 183, 205, 222, 365, 409, 418, ...

Scriptural Confirmations 2, 4, 14, 22, 53, 89

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Word/Phrase Explanations

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Arcana Coelestia # 3969

Arcana Coelestia (Elliott translation)      

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3969. 'And she said, God has taken away my reproach. And she called his name Joseph, saying, May Jehovah add to me another son' in the highest sense means the Lord as regards the Divine Spiritual, in the internal sense the spiritual kingdom or the good of faith, and in the external sense salvation, also fruitfulness and multiplication. This is clear from the representation of 'Joseph' in the Word, dealt with below, also from the meaning of 'God has taken away my reproach', as well as 'May Jehovah add to me another son', for the name Joseph was derived from the verbs 'to gather up' and 'to add'. 'God has taken away my reproach' means that Rachel was now no longer barren, and so no longer 'dead', as she spoke of herself to Jacob in verse 1 above; see 3908. For 'Rachel' represents the affection for interior truth, that is, the interior man as regards truth, 3758, 3782, 3793, 3819. The interior man is so to speak dead as regards truth and good if the exterior or natural man does not correspond to it as regards goods and truths, see 3493, 3620, 3623. They must be so joined each to the other that they are not two but together form one man.

(Odkazy: Genesis 30:24)

[2] But the two cannot become joined together until the natural or external man has been prepared, that is, until it has received and acknowledged the general truths which have been meant by Jacob's ten sons by Leah and the servant-girls, and until the good of the natural man has been joined to the truths in that man, which joining together was meant by Jacob's last son by Leah, namely Zebulun, who was so called from the expression 'dwelling together', 3960, 3961. After this joining together has taken place the interior man and the exterior man enter into the heavenly marriage spoken of in 3952. The reason they do not enter it until then is a very deep arcanum, for it is the good of the interior man which in that case joins itself to the good of the exterior man, and through that exterior good to the truth in the exterior man. At the same time the good of the interior man joins itself through the affection for truth in that interior man to the good of the exterior man and also to the truth there, and so joins itself directly and indirectly. concerning this direct and indirect linking together, see 3314, 3573, 3616. Since the interior man is only then joined to the exterior, and until this joining together has taken place the interior man is seemingly non-existent and so seemingly dead, as stated above, the phrase 'God has taken away my reproach' is therefore used. This then is what is meant by 'the reproach' which God is said to have 'gathered up', that is, to have taken away, meaning to have released her from it.

[3] But the words which follow - 'May Jehovah add to me another son', from which Joseph received his name - mean a second arcanum, which is this: 'Joseph' represents the Lord's spiritual kingdom and so the spiritual man, for that kingdom exists within every spiritual man. There are two things which constitute the spiritual man - charity and faith, or what amounts to the same, good and truth. Charity from which faith, or good from which truth springs, is the thing that Joseph represents. And faith which has charity within it, or truth which has good within it, is the thing that the second son means - that Benjamin represents, dealt with at Genesis 35:16-18. So Joseph means the celestial-spiritual man, and Benjamin the spiritual-celestial. The nature of the difference between them may be seen from what has been said fairly often already about good from which truth springs and truth that has good within it. This then is what is meant by Rachel's second utterance 'May Jehovah add to me another son'. But these arcana cannot be seen except by those who are governed by charity from which faith springs, for interiorly those people are dwelling in the light of heaven, which light also includes intelligence within it. But those arcana cannot be seen by those who are dwelling solely in the light of the world, for that light does not include intelligence except insofar as it holds the light of heaven within itself. To angels who dwell in the light of heaven these arcana belong among the most ordinary things they know.

[4] From these considerations one may now see that the words 'God has taken away my reproach' and 'May Jehovah add to me another son' in the highest sense mean the Lord as regards the Divine Spiritual, and in the internal sense the Lord's spiritual kingdom or the good of faith, for such good is the spiritual as this exists in that kingdom. But the reason why those words in the external sense mean salvation, also fruitfulness and multiplication, is that these come as the product of that good, 3971. But what the Lord's spiritual kingdom is may become clear from what has been stated and shown many times already about that kingdom, that is to say, it consists of those who are governed by charity and from charity by faith. This kingdom is distinct and separate from the Lord's celestial kingdom, for the celestial kingdom consists of those who are governed by love to the Lord and from that love by charity. The latter constitute the third or inmost heaven, whereas the spiritual constitute the second or interior heaven.

[5] The reason why the name God is used first, in 'God has taken away my reproach', then Jehovah, in 'May Jehovah add to me another son', is that God has regard to the ascent from truth up to good but Jehovah to the descent from good down to truth. The spiritual man is governed by the good of faith, that is, by the good from which truth springs; but prior to his becoming spiritual he is governed by the truth of faith, that is, by truth that has good within it. For the name God is used when truth is the subject, but Jehovah when good is the subject, 2586, 2769, 2807, 2822, 3921.

[6] The fact that 'Joseph' represents the Lord's spiritual kingdom, or the spiritual man, and so represents the good of faith, becomes clear also from those places in the Word where his name is mentioned, as in the prophecy of Jacob, who by then was Israel,

The son of a fruitful one is Joseph, the son of a fruitful one beside a spring; O daughters, he trails over the wall; and the archers will exasperate him and shoot at him and hate him. And he will sit in the strength of his bow, and the arms of his hands will be made strong by the hands of the Mighty One of Jacob; from there is the Shepherd, the Stone of Israel. By the God of your father, and he will assist you; and with Shaddai, and he will bless you with the blessings of heaven from above, with the blessings of the deep lying beneath, with the blessings of the breasts and of the womb. The blessings of your father will prevail over the blessings of my ancestors, even to the desire of the everlasting hills. They will be upon the head of Joseph and upon the crown of the head of the Nazirite among his brothers. Genesis 49:22-26.

These prophetic utterances in the highest sense contain a description of the Lord's Divine Spiritual, in the internal sense a description of His spiritual kingdom. What each detail entails will in the Lord's Divine mercy be discussed in the explanation of that chapter.

[7] Similarly in the prophecy of Moses,

For Joseph he said, Blessed by Jehovah is his land, of the precious things of heaven, of the dew, of the deep also lying beneath, and of the precious things of the fruits of the sun, and of the precious things of the produce of the months, and of the precious things of the mountains of the east, and of the precious things of the everlasting hills, and of the precious things of the earth and of its fullness; and the good pleasure of Him dwelling in the bramble bush. They will come upon the head of Joseph and upon the crown of the head of the Nazirite among his brothers. Deuteronomy 33:13-17.

[8] Because 'Israel' represents the Lord's spiritual Church, 3305, 3654,

Jacob, who by then was Israel, said to Joseph,

Your two sons who were born to you in the land of Egypt, before I came to you in Egypt, will be mine. Ephraim and Manasseh will be as Reuben and Simeon. May the angel who has redeemed me from every evil bless the boys, that in them my name may be called, and the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac; and may they increase into a multitude in the midst of the earth. Genesis 48:5, 16.

There are two things which constitute the spiritual Church - the understanding and the will, the understanding being represented by 'Ephraim' and the will by 'Manasseh'. From this one can see why Joseph's two sons were adopted by Jacob, by then Israel, and acknowledged as his own. Ephraim is also mentioned often in the Word, especially the prophetical part, in which places that name means the ability which the spiritual Church possesses to understand what is true and what is good.

[9] In Ezekiel,

Jehovah said, Son of man, take a stick and write on it, For Judah and for the children of Israel, his companions. And take another stick and write on it, For Joseph - the stick of Ephraim and of the whole house of Israel, his companions and join them together, one to the other into one stick for you, that both may be one in your 1 hand. Thus said the Lord Jehovih, I, behold, I am taking the stick of Joseph which is in the hand of Ephraim and of the tribes of Israel his companions, and I will add them to the stick of Judah, and make them into one stick, and they will be one in My hand. And I will make them into one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel; and one king will be king to them all, and they will no longer be two nations, nor will they ever be divided into two nations again. Ezekiel 37:16-17, 19, 22.

This refers to the Lord's kingdom, to the celestial and to the spiritual - 'Judah' being the celestial kingdom, 3654, 3881, 3921 (end), and 'Joseph' the spiritual. It is also said that those kingdoms will not be two but one - they were actually made one by the Lord's Coming into the world.

[10] By the Lord's Coming the spiritual were saved, see 2661, 2716, 2833, 2834. It is those who are spiritual that the Lord is speaking about in John,

And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will hear My voice, and there will be one Bock and one shepherd. John 10:16.

This is what is meant by 'the two sticks', the stick of Judah and the stick of Joseph, which will be joined into one, and will be one in the Lord's hand, like one nation, even as they are one in the Lord's kingdom. For celestial angels constitute the third heaven, which is the inmost heaven, but spiritual angels the second, which is the interior heaven, and in that kingdom they are one because one flows into the other, namely the celestial heaven into the spiritual. The spiritual kingdom is so to speak the groundwork on which the celestial is based, and in this way the two are made firm and stable. For the Divine celestial within the third or inmost heaven is love to the Lord, the celestial-spiritual in that heaven being charity. The latter, namely charity, is the chief thing in the second or interior heaven where spiritual angels are. This shows the nature of influx and also how things are made firm and stable by means of influx. 'Wood' means good, both the good which belongs to love to the Lord and the good which belongs to charity towards the neighbour, 2784, 2812, 3720. For this reason the command was given to write Judah and Joseph on the two sticks which were to be made one.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 2833-2834)

[11] In Zechariah,

I will make the house of Judah powerful, and I will save the house of Joseph, and I will restore them, 2 for I have had compassion on them, and they will be as though I had not forsaken them, for I am Jehovah their God and I will answer them. Zechariah 10:6.

This too refers to the two kingdoms, the celestial and the spiritual, 'Judah' being the celestial kingdom and 'Joseph' the spiritual. Also referred to is the salvation of the spiritual.

[12] In Amos,

Thus said Jehovah to the house of Israel, Seek Me and you will live. Seek Jehovah and you will live, lest like fire He invades the house of Joseph and it devours and there is nobody quenching it. Hate evil, and desire good, and establish judgement in the gate; it may be that Jehovah God Zebaoth will have compassion on the remnant of Joseph. Amos 5:4, 6, 15.

Here also those who are spiritual are meant by 'Joseph'. 'The house of Israel' means the spiritual Church, 3305, 3654, 'Joseph' the good of that Church. Hence the statement 'Jehovah said to the house of Israel, Seek Me and you will live, lest like fire He invades the house of Joseph'.

[13] In David,

Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, leading Joseph like a flock. You who are seated on the cherubim, shine forth before Ephraim and Benjamin and Manasseh. Stir up Your might and come to save us. Psalms 80:1-2.

Here similarly 'Joseph' means the spiritual man, 'Ephraim, Benjamin, and Manasseh' being three essentials of that Church.

(Odkazy: Psalms 80:1-3)

[14] In the same author,

Raise a song, and sound the timbrel, the sweet harp with the lyre; blow the trumpet at the new moon, at the festival, on our feast day. For it is a statute for Israel, a judgement to the God of Jacob. [As] a testimony for Joseph He appointed it, when He went out against the land of Egypt. I heard a language that I did not know. Psalms 81:2-5.

From each individual word or term used here it is evident that 'Joseph' means the spiritual Church or spiritual man. For there are in the Word terms which present spiritual realities and terms which present celestial ones, and these terms occur consistently throughout the Word. In this quotation terms that present spiritual realities are used - 'a song', 'the timbrel', 'the harp with the lyre', and 'blowing the trumpet at the new moon, at the festival, on a feast day'. From this also it is evident that the subject is the spiritual Church meant by 'Joseph'.

[15] In Ezekiel,

Thus said the Lord Jehovih, This is the boundary by which you will inherit the land according to the twelve tribes of Israel, the portions for Joseph. Ezekiel 47:13.

This refers to the Lord's spiritual kingdom, and therefore the phrase 'the portions for Joseph' is used. The Lord's Divine spiritual is that which is also called His kingship, for the Lord's kingship is Divine Truth, but His priesthood Divine Good, 2015, 3009, 3670. The Lord's kingship itself is that which 'Joseph' represents, in that he was made king in the land of Egypt. That representation will in the Lord's Divine mercy be dealt with when that chapter is reached.

[16] As regards the Lord's Divine spiritual, or Divine Truth, which is represented in the highest sense by 'Joseph', it does not exist within the Lord but flows from the Lord; for the Lord is nothing else than Divine Good. But Divine Truth proceeds from Divine Good. To use a comparison, it is like the sun and the light of the sun. Light does not exist within the sun but proceeds from the sun. Or it is like fire. Light does not exist in fire but proceeds from it. And in the Word Divine Good itself is compared to the sun and also to fire, and is actually called sun and fire. The Lord's celestial kingdom receives its life from the good which proceeds from the Lord, but the spiritual kingdom receives its life from the truth derived from that good. For this reason in the next life the Lord is seen as the Sun by those who are celestial, but as the Moon by those who are spiritual, see 1053, 1521, 1529-1531, 3636, 3643. For both warmth and light proceed from the sun. Its warmth is comparable to the good of love, which is also called celestial and spiritual warmth, its light to the truth flowing from it, which is also referred to as spiritual light, see 3636, 3643. But the celestial warmth and the spiritual light which proceed from the Lord as the Sun in the next life, include within them the good of love and the truth of faith, and so include wisdom and intelligence, 1521-1523, 1542, 1619-1632, 2776, 3138, 3190, 3195, 3222, 3223, 3339, 3485, 3636, 3643, 3862. For things which proceed from the Lord are living.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 3222-3223)

[17] From this one may see what the Divine Spiritual is; in what the spiritual kingdom and the celestial kingdom have their origins; and also that the spiritual kingdom is the good of faith, which good is charity, flowing in from the Lord directly, and also indirectly through the celestial kingdom. In the Word the Divine Spiritual which proceeds from the Lord is called the Spirit of truth, and is holy truth. The Divine Spiritual does not belong to any spirit but is the Lord's, who imparts it through a spirit sent by Him, as becomes clear from the Lord's own words in John,

When He the Spirit of truth comes He will guide you into all the truth, for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak. He will also declare to you the things that are to come. He will glorify Me, for He will receive from what is Mine and declare it to you. John 16:13-14.


1. The Latin means my but the Hebrew means your.

2. literally, I will cause them to dwell


(Odkazy: Genesis 30:24)

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From Swedenborg's Works

Inbound References:

Arcana Coelestia 3971, 3987, 4607, 4669, 5113, 5307, 5444, 5584, 5586, 5600, 5689, 5922, 6241, 6417, 6427, 6583, 6854, 6945, 9199, 9277, 9325, 9340, 9404, 9670, 9671, 9684, 9780, 10283

Heaven and Hell 86

The New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine 23, 121, 186, 304, 306, 307

References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 28, 39, 163, 193, 222, 237, 295, 316, 336, 355, 357, 376, 386, 440, 475

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