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Jeremiah 50

English: Webster's Bible         

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1 The word that the LORD spoke against Babylon and against the land of the Chaldeans by Jeremiah the prophet.

2 Declare ye among the nations, and publish, and set up a standard; publish, and conceal not: say, Babylon is taken, Bel is confounded, Merodach is broken in pieces; her idols are confounded, her images are broken in pieces.

3 For out of the north there cometh a nation against her, which shall make her land desolate, and none shall dwell in it, they shall remove, they shall depart, both man and beast.

4 In those days, and in that time, saith the LORD, the children of Israel shall come, they and the children of Judah together, going and weeping; they shall go, and seek the LORD their God.

5 They shall ask the way to Zion with their faces towards it, saying, Come, and let us join ourselves to the LORD in a perpetual covenant that shall not be forgotten.

6 My people have been lost sheep: their shepherds have caused them to go astray, they have turned them away on the mountains: they have gone from mountain to hill, they have forgotten their resting-place.

7 All that found them have devoured them: and their adversaries said, We offend not, because they have sinned against the LORD, the habitation of justice, even the LORD, the hope of their fathers.

8 Remove out of the midst of Babylon, and go forth from the land of the Chaldeans, and be as the he-goats before the flocks.

9 For lo, I will raise and cause to come against Babylon an assembly of great nations from the north country: and they shall set themselves in array against her; from thence she shall be taken: their arrows shall be as of a mighty expert man; none shall return in vain.

10 And Chaldea shall be a spoil: all that spoil her shall be satisfied, saith the LORD.

11 Because ye were glad, because ye rejoiced, O ye destroyers of my heritage, because ye are grown fat as the heifer at grass, and bellow as bulls;

12 Your mother shall be greatly confounded; she that bore you shall be ashamed: behold, the hindermost of the nations shall be a wilderness, a dry land, and a desert.

13 Because of the wrath of the LORD it shall not be inhabited, but it shall be wholly desolate: every one that goeth by Babylon shall be astonished, and hiss at all her plagues.

14 Put yourselves in array against Babylon on every side: all ye that bend the bow, shoot at her, spare no arrows: for she hath sinned against the LORD.

15 Shout against her on every side; she hath given her hand: her foundations are fallen, her walls are thrown down: for it is the vengeance of the LORD: take vengeance upon her; as she hath done, do to her.

16 Cut off the sower from Babylon, and him that handleth the sickle in the time of harvest: for fear of the oppressing sword they shall turn every one to his people, and they shall flee every one to his own land.

17 Israel is a scattered sheep; the lions have driven him away: first the king of Assyria hath devoured him; and last this Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon hath broken his bones.

18 Therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Behold, I will punish the king of Babylon and his land, as I have punished the king of Assyria.

19 And I will bring Israel again to his habitation, and he shall feed on Carmel and Bashan, and his soul shall be satisfied upon mount Ephraim and Gilead.

20 In those days, and in that time, saith the LORD, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none; and the sins of Judah, and they shall not be found: for I will pardon them whom I reserve.

21 Go up against the land of Merathaim, even against it, and against the inhabitants of Pekod: waste and utterly destroy after them, saith the LORD, and do according to all that I have commanded thee.

22 A sound of battle is in the land, and of great destruction.

23 How is the hammer of the whole earth cut asunder and broken! how is Babylon become a desolation among the nations!

24 I have laid a snare for thee, and thou art also taken, O Babylon, and thou wast not aware: thou art found, and also caught, because thou hast striven against the LORD.

25 The LORD hath opened his armory, and hath brought forth the weapons of his indignation: for this is the work of the Lord GOD of hosts in the land of the Chaldeans.

26 Come against her from the utmost border, open her store-houses: cast her up as heaps, and destroy her utterly: let nothing of her be left.

27 Slay all her bullocks; let them go down to the slaughter: woe to them! for their day is come, the time of their visitation.

28 The voice of them that flee and escape from the land of Babylon, to declare in Zion the vengeance of the LORD our God, the vengeance of his temple.

29 Call together the archers against Babylon: all ye that bend the bow, encamp against it on every side; let none thereof escape: recompense her according to her work; according to all that she hath done, do to her: for she hath been proud against the LORD, against the Holy One of Israel.

30 Therefore her young men shall fall in the streets, and all her men of war shall be cut off in that day, saith the LORD.

31 Behold, I am against thee, O thou most proud, saith the Lord GOD of hosts: for thy day is come, the time that I will visit thee.

32 And the most proud shall stumble and fall, and none shall raise him up: and I will kindle a fire in his cities, and it shall devour all around him.

33 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; The children of Israel and the children of Judah were oppressed together: and all that took them captives held them fast; they refused to let them go.

34 Their Redeemer is strong; the LORD of hosts is his name: he will thoroughly plead their cause, that he may give rest to the land, and disquiet the inhabitants of Babylon.

35 A sword is upon the Chaldeans, saith the LORD, and upon the inhabitants of Babylon, and upon her princes, and upon her wise men.

36 A sword is upon the liars; and they shall be sottish: a sword is upon her mighty men; and they shall be dismayed.

37 A sword is upon their horses, and upon their chariots, and upon all the mingled people that are in the midst of her; and they shall become as women: a sword is upon her treasures; and they shall be robbed.

38 A drouth is upon her waters; and they shall be dried up: for it is the land of graven images, and they are mad upon their idols.

39 Therefore the wild beasts of the desert with the wild beasts of the isles, shall dwell there, and the owls shall dwell therein: and it shall be no more inhabited for ever; neither shall it be dwelt in from generation to generation.

40 As God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah and the neighboring cities, saith the LORD; so shall no man abide there, neither shall any son of man dwell therein.

41 Behold, a people shall come from the north, and a great nation, and many kings shall be raised up from the borders of the earth.

42 They shall hold the bow and the lance: they are cruel, and will not show mercy: their voice shall roar like the sea, and they shall ride upon horses, every one put in array, like a man to the battle, against thee, O daughter of Babylon.

43 The king of Babylon hath heard the report of them, and his hands became feeble: anguish took hold of him, and pangs as of a woman in travail.

44 Behold, he shall come up like a lion from the swelling of Jordan to the habitation of the strong: but I will make them suddenly run away from her: and who is a chosen man, that I may appoint over her? for who is like me? and who will appoint me the time? and who is that shepherd that will stand before me?

45 Therefore hear ye the counsel of the LORD, that he hath taken against Babylon; and his purposes, that he hath purposed against the land of the Chaldeans: Surely the least of the flock shall draw them out: surely he shall make their habitation desolate with them.

46 At the noise of the taking of Babylon the earth is moved, and the cry is heard among the nations.

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Swedenborg

Hlavní výklad ze Swedenborgových prací:

Arcana Coelestia 1368

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 116


Další odkazy Swedenborga k této kapitole:

Arcana Coelestia 289, 468, 583, 1186, 1326, 1813, 2025, ...

Apocalypse Revealed 52, 173, 241, 281, 298, 299, 336, ...

A Brief Exposition of New Church Doctrine 120

The Lord 4, 34, 38, 39, 40, 53

Sacred Scripture 51, 79

Heaven and Hell 365

The Last Judgment 54

True Christian Religion 45, 83, 93, 158, 188, 294, 637, ...


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 131, 275, 278, 304, 328, 355, 357, ...

The White Horse - Appendix 1

Marriage 45, 83, 93

Scriptural Confirmations 4, 19, 51, 98

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Word/Phrase Explanations

the Word
In general, we tend to be very aware of how knowing what's true leads to doing what is good. That starts as children, with parents...

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...

the Lord
The Bible refers to the Lord in many different ways, which from the text seem indistinguishable and interchangeable. Understood in the internal sense, though, there...

lord
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...

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

babylon
Babylon was an ancient city built on the Euphrates river in what is now southern Iraq. It once was the capital of a great empire...

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

chaldeans
Chaldea was a land lying along the Euphrates river near its mouth, south of Babylon, part of what is now southern Iraq. It was a...

jeremiah
Jeremiah, in the Book of Jeremiah 1:1 and what follows, represents the Lord. (Arcana Coelestia 2838 [2]). In Jeremiah 13:7, he signifies the state of...

prophet
The idea of a "prophet" is very closely tied to the idea of the Bible itself, since the Bible was largely written by prophets. At...

declare
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...

nations
'Nations' signify people who are in the good of love and charity from the Lord. Two nations in the womb,' as in Genesis 25:23, signify...

Bel
Bel (Isa. 46:1) signifies the profanation of truth.

idols
Idols of stone signify worship from falsities of doctrine. Idols of wood signify worship from evils of doctrine. Idols of silver signify worship from what...

Images
'Images' denote things fashioned from man’s own intelligence.

north
'North' signifies people who are in obscurity regarding truth. North,' in Isaiah 14:31, signifies hell. The North,' as in Jeremiah 3:12, signifies people who are...

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...

remove
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...

beast
"Beasts" represent the affection for doing good things, a true desire to do them from the heart. In the negative sense, "beasts" stand for the...

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...

children
A child is a young boy or girl in the care of parents, older than a suckling or an infant, but not yet an adolescent....

Israel
'Israel,' in Jeremiah 23:8, signifies the spiritual natural church. The children of Israel dispersed all the literal sense of the Word by falsities. 'The children...

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

judah
City of Judah,' as in Isaiah 40:9, signifies the doctrine of love towards the Lord and love towards our neighbor in its whole extent.

seek
The meaning of "to seek" in the Bible is pretty straightforward, but there is a bit of nuance: Swedenborg tells us that in most cases...

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...

way
In John 14:6, 'the way is doctrine,' 'the truth' is every thing pertaining to doctrine, and 'the life' is the essential good which is the...

Zion
Zion, in 1 Kings 8:1 and Revelation 14:1 signifies heaven and the church where the Lord alone is worshipped. (Apocalypse Revealed 612). Zion, in the...

faces
“The eyes are the windows of the soul.” That’s a sentiment with roots somewhere in murky antiquity, but one that has become hopelessly cliché because...

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,...

Perpetual
'Perpetual' in the literal sense, means to the end of one’s life, after death, and eternity.

forgotten
To forget, in the internal sense, signifies nothing else but removal and apparent privation.

sheep
A flock, as in Genesis 26, denotes interior or rational good. A flock signifies those who are in spiritual good. A flock signifies natural interior...

shepherds
The Writings tell us that shepherds represent those who lead and teach others, using knowledge and true ideas to help people reach the goodness of...

mountains
In Isaiah 40:12 'to weigh the mountains in a balance, and the hills in scales,' signifies that the celestial aspects of love and charity are...

mountain
'Hills' signify the good of charity.

hill
The Writings tell us that the Lord's love is the sun of heaven, and it is natural for us to look above ourselves to the...

found
To not to be found any more, signifies not to rise again.

adversaries
Foes, or adversaries, denote the falsities of evil. Foes, or adversaries, when predicate of the Lord, signifies to avert falsities derived from evil.

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...

justice
He is said to be 'just' in a spiritual sense, who lives according to divine laws. They on the right hand being called 'just,' as...

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...

midst
'Middle' denotes what is primary, principal, or inmost.

Go forth
To go forth, as in Genesis 19:14, signifies to recede from, or not to remain in [evil]. To go forth, as in Genesis 41:45, denotes...

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...

assembly
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...

great
The word "great" is used in the Bible to represent a state with a strong degree of love and affection, of the desire for good;...

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...

arrows
In the Word, arrows stand for truths which defend person from falsity. In Arcana Coelestia 2709, it says this when discussing Genesis 21:20: "And he...

mighty
Mighty,' as in Revelation 19:18, signify people who are educated about doctrine derived from the Word. By extension, 'mighty' signifies education or learning derived from...

return
Everyone knows the phrase "the natural order of things." It means that everything is in its proper place, occupying the niche it is meant to...

spoil
'Spoil of gold, and silver, and cattle' signifies falsified truths.

satisfied
'What satisfies' is what nourishes the soul.

glad
To make glad signifies influx and reception from joy of heart.

heritage
In Biblical times, possessions passed from fathers to sons, a patriarchal system that would not be accepted in today's society – but one that is...

mother
Father, son, mother, and daughter, as in Luke 12:51, 53: By father against son, and by son against the father, is understood evil against truth,...

bore
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...

ashamed
To be ashamed (Gen 2:25) signifies to be in evil

wilderness
'Wilderness' signifies something with little life in it, as described in the internal sense in Luke 1:80 'Wilderness' signifies somewhere there is no good because...

inhabited
'Inhabit' refers to good.

Every one
The phrase “Every one,” where it occurs in Genesis 20:7, signifies every thing or all things.

goeth
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...

plagues
'Plagues' signify evils of love, and falsities of faith. 'The plagues of Egypt' signify the falsities and lust which cause the church to perish. In...

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

side
'Side' signifies good or spiritual love.

Bow
A bow signifies falsity of doctrine destroying truth, and spear, the falsity of evil de­stroying good. (Jer. 6:23.)

shout
'To shout from the top of the mountain,' as in Isaiah 42:11, signifies worship from the good of love.

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...

foundations
A foundation signifies truth on which heaven and the church, and its doctrines are founded.

vengeance
'To be avenged seventy and seven fold' denotes damnation.

to
'To jubilate' or 'make a joyful noise' signifies worship from the delight of good.

Cut off
To be cut off, as in Genesis 41:36, signifies to perish.

harvest
'A harvest' symbolizes the state of the church with respect to Divine truth. The reason is that a harvest yields the grain used to make...

sword
A 'sword,' in the Word, signifies the truth of faith combating and the vastation of truth. In an opposite sense, it signifies falsity combating and...

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...

flee
Flight, as in Matthew 14:20, signifies removal from a state of the good of love and innocence. Flight, as in Mark 8:18, signifies the last...

own
In many cases, the spiritual meaning of "own," both as a verb and as an adjective, is relatively literal. When people are described as the...

lions
'A lion' signifies the good of celestial love and the truth from that good.

Last
'The first and the last' signifies that the Lord is the only God.

Hosts
When the divine power of good or omnipotence is being discussed in the Word, then says 'Jehovah Zebaoth,' or 'Jehovah of hosts,' and also 'Lord,'...

feed
When the Bible talks about "feeding" it is generally referring to instruction in spiritual things – teaching people the true concepts that can lead them...

Carmel
'Sharon, Bashan, and Carmel' signify the church regarding the knowledges of good and truth from the natural sense of the Word.

soul
The nature of the soul is a deep and complicated topic, but it can be summarized as "spiritual life," who we are in terms of...

mount
'Mount Olivet' signifies the celestial church, or celestial good, which comes from love towards the Lord, and divine love.

ephraim
Ephraim was the second son born to Joseph in Egypt and was, along with his older brother Manasseh, elevated by Jacob to the same status...

Gilead
Mount Gilead, as in Genesis 31:21, 23, as a boundary, in a spiritual sense, signifies the first good, which is that of things pertaining to...

iniquity
In Isaiah 59:6, 'webs' and 'garments' signify aspects of the understanding, or thought, 'Iniquity' and 'violence,' aspects of the will, or works.

sins
In the Word three terms are used to mean bad things that are done. These three are transgression, iniquity, and sin, and they are here...

the inhabitants
'The inhabitants of Teman,' as in Jeremiah 49:20, signifies the evils and falsities opposed to the Lord’s celestial kingdom.

after
Behind, or after, (Gen. 16:13), signifies within or above, or an interior or superior principle.

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,...

broken
To “break” something creates an image that is much different from “attacking,” “destroying,” or “shattering.” It is less emotional, less violent in its intent; it...

caught
"Catching" is used in a variety of ways in the Bible, both positive and negative. Thieves get caught; the Egyptians caught up with the Children...

opened
To open,' as in Revelation 9, signifies communication and conjunction.

work
'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...

go down
To go up and to go down: in the Word, mention is made of going up and going down when speaking of going from one...

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,"...

slaughter
'Slaughter' signifies perdition and damnation. 'Slaughter' and 'a storm of slaughter,' signifies evils which destroy the goods of the church. 'The day of great slaughter'...

day
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...

visitation
The end time of the church and each individual, is called 'the visitation,' and precedes judgment. 'Visitation' is nothing but an exploration of the quality...

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

temple
'A temple' represents heaven and the church. The sacred place where the ark was, represents the inmost, or third heaven, and the church among people...

recompense
'To repay' denotes making amends by truth.

fall
Like other common verbs, the meaning of "fall" is highly dependent on context in regular language, and is highly dependent on context in a spiritual...

streets
Swedenborg tell us that in terms of measurement, height relates to the desire for good and breadth relates to the knowledge of truth. Following that,...

war
War in the Word represents the combat of temptation when what is good is assaulted by what is evil or false. The evil that attacks...

stumble
To 'stumble' denotes being scandalized or offended, and falling, as a result, from truths into falsities.

fire
Just as natural fire can be both comforting in keeping you warm or scary in burning down your house, so fire in the spiritual sense...

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

devour
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...

Redeemer
Jehovah is called 'the redeemer,' because He took on a human nature.

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...

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

wise
At its heart, wisdom is love's imperative desire to take form. That's a tricky statement, but think of it this way: If you love someone,...

Mighty men
'Mighty men,' as in Lamentations 1:15, denotes people who are in the good of love.

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...

women
The word "woman" is used a number of different ways in the Bible – as a simple description, as someone connected to a man ("his...

treasures
In Jeremiah 20:4-5, 'wealth,' 'labor,' 'precious things,' and 'all the treasures of the kings of Judah' signify the knowledges of faith.

waters
'Waters,' 'rivers,' and 'depths,' as in Psalm 78:15-16, signify truths from the Lord.

dried
'Withering and drying up,' as in Ezekiel 17:10, referring to the east wind, signifies when there is no good or truth.

Wild beasts of the desert
'Wild beasts of the desert,' 'doleful creatures,' 'owls,' 'satyrs,' 'wild beasts of the islands,' and 'dragons,' as in Isaiah 13:21-22, signify when the interior aspects...

Wild beasts
'Wild beasts' denote affections and lusts.

dwelt
Inhabitants,' in Isaiah 26:9, signify the men of the church who are in good of doctrine, and thence in the good of life.

generation
To “generate” something is to create it, and that idea underpins the meaning of a “generation” of people – it is a group that was...

Gomorrah
'Sodom' signifies the evil of self-love, and 'Gomorrah,' the falsity derived from it.

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

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...

son of man
The Lord, in some places, calls Himself 'the son of God,' at other times, 'the son of man (ἄνθρωπος).' This is always according to the...

people
The Bible generally uses two different terms for large groups: “people” and “nation.” When it uses the term “nation,” it is talking about a group...

many
Intellectual things – ideas, knowledge, facts, even insight and understanding – are more separate and free-standing than emotional things, and it’s easier to imagine numbering...

kings
The human mind is composed of two parts, a will and an understanding, a seat of loves and affections, and a seat of wisdom and...

borders
Often translated as “edge,” “border,” “boundary,” “outskirts,” “far places” and other ways, this term is used in the Bible for the farthest reaches of an...

show
'Shew' signifies instruction to the life.

sea
'The sea and the waves roaring' means heresy and controversies in the church and individual.

ride
'To ride' signifies being elevated regarding the intellectual part of the mind. To ride upon a cherub,' as in Psalm 18:9, 10, denotes the Lord’s...

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...

became
To beget or to be begotten is very similar in meaning to birth: It represents one spiritual state leading to the next spiritual state. "Beget,"...

travail
'To travail in birth' signifies conceiving and bringing forth the elements of spiritual life.

jordan
The land of Jordan,' as in Psalm 42:6, signifies what is lowly, consequently, what is distant from the celestial, as the external parts of a...

stand
'To stay with,' as in Genesis 32:4, relates to the life of truth when accompanied by good, and in this instance, it means to take...

hear
'To hearken to father and mother,' as mentioned in Genesis 28:7, signifies obedience from affection. 'To hearken,' as mentioned in Genesis 30:22, signifies providence. See...

noise
'A voice crying,' and 'the voice of a cry,' are common expressions in the Word, and are applied whenever there is a noise or disturbance,...

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Arcana Coelestia # 10406

Arcana Coelestia (Elliott translation)      

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10406. 'And fashioned it with a chisel' means a product of their own intelligence. This is clear from the meaning of 'fashioning with a chisel', when an idol is the subject, as producing false teachings by the use of one's own intelligence, which happens when the literal sense of the Word is used in support of self-love and love of the world. When these rule a person he does not have any enlightenment from heaven. Instead his own intelligence is what he draws on for all the ideas he acquires; and these he substantiates by means of the literal sense of the Word, which he falsifies by using it in a wrong way and interpreting it in a perverted manner. And after this he favours those ideas because he is the author of them.

[2] Various places throughout the Word contain references to graven images and molded images. People who take the Word entirely literally suppose that no more than idols should be understood by them in those places. Not idols however should be understood but false matters of doctrine upheld by the Church, such as are fashioned by a person himself when guided by some love of his own. Falsities when fashioned in such a way that they may hang together and look like truths are meant by 'a graven image'; and falsities when fused together in support of external kinds of love in such a way that evils look like forms of good are meant by 'a molded image'. And since 'the golden calf' is used to mean both types of falsities it says here that Aaron fashioned it with a chisel, by which the fashioning of falsities to look like truths should be understood; then immediately after it says that he made the gold into a calf of molded [metal], and in verse 24 that he threw it into the fire and the calf came out, by which the fusing together of falsities in support of external kinds of love in order that evils may look like forms of good should be understood. This is also what every matter of doctrine is like that is forged by a person and not by the Lord. Matters of doctrine are forged by the person when that person has his own glory and gain as the end in view; but they are forged by the Lord when the good of the neighbour and the good of the Lord's kingdom are regarded as the end in view.

[3] These kinds of things are meant by 'graven images' and 'molded images' in the following places: In Isaiah,

You will judge unclean the covering of the graven images of your silver, and the clothing of the molded image of your gold. Isaiah 30:22.

'The covering of the graven images of silver' means the appearance presented by falsities, as though they were truths, and 'the clothing of the molded image of gold' means the appearance presented by evils, as though they were forms of good; for 'the covering' and 'the clothing' mean the outward appearances with which they are endued or coated over. 'Silver' means truth, and 'gold' good, and this is why 'the graven images' are said to be 'of silver' and 'the molded image' to be 'of gold'. For the meaning of 'silver' as truth and of 'gold' as good, see 1551, 1552, 5658, 6914, 6917, 9874, 9881.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 1551-1552)


[4] In the same prophet,

The craftsman casts a graven image, and a goldsmith overlays it with gold, and casts silver chains for it. He seeks for himself a skilled 1 craftsman to make ready a graven image which is immovable. Isaiah 40:19-20.

This describes a fashioning of falsities so that they may hang together and look as though they were truths. 'A graven image' means such falsity, 'the craftsman' means the person who fashions it by the use of self-intelligence, 'a goldsmith overlays it with gold' means when he makes it to look like what is good, 'casts silver chains for it' means by making it all hang together, 'which is immovable' means which cannot therefore be weakened and destroyed.

(Odkazy: Isaiah 44:9-13)


[5] In the same prophet,

Makers of the graven image, [all are] vanity; and their most desirable things are profitless. Who has fashioned a god, and cast a molded image, that it may not profit him? All his companions will be ashamed, and the workmen themselves. He fashions the iron with tongs, and works it with the coals, and forms it with sharp hammers; so he makes it with his strong arm 2 . He fashions wood, stretches out a cord, and marks it off with a ruler. He makes it into its angles, and marks it out with a ring, and makes it into the form of a man (vir), according to the beauty of a human being, to dwell in the house. Isaiah 44:9-14.

This too describes how false teachings are fashioned so that they may hang together and look like truths and forms of good. Every detail here serves to describe how this is brought about by a person using self-intelligence under the guidance of his own wishes, desire, and love. The truth of this may be seen by those who know that all things in the Word have an inner meaning by means of which they must be understood in a spiritual way. Why else should such a description of fashioning a graven image be given? To the end that it may look like truth and good is the meaning when it says that 'he makes it in the form of a man, according to the beauty of a human being'; for in the internal sense 'a man' means truth and 'a human being' the good of that truth.

(Odkazy: Isaiah 44:9-13)


[6] In Jeremiah,

Every person has been made stupid by knowledge; every metal-caster has been filled with shame by his graven image, for his molded image is a lie; and there is no spirit in those things. Jeremiah 10:14; 51:17.

Here 'graven image' means that which is the product of self-intelligence, and 'molded image' that which accords with the person's love. This meaning is plainly evident, for it says that a person has been made stupid by knowledge, and every metal-caster has been filled with shame by his graven image, and that his molded image is a lie, 'knowledge' here being self-intelligence, and 'a lie' the falsity of evil; and since those objects have nothing of God within them it says that there is no spirit in those things.

[7] In the same prophet,

O sword against its horses and against its chariots, against its treasures, in order that they may be looted! A drought on its waters, in order that they may dry up! For it is the land of graven images. Jeremiah 50:37-38.

'The land of graven images' means a Church in which falsities reign. This too is perfectly clear from the details of these verses when understood in the spiritual sense. Without that sense what would a sword against horses, against chariots, against treasures, and a drought on waters be but words or sounds that have no spirit within them? But from those details when understood in the internal sense it is evident that these verses describe the destruction of the Church's truths and so the subsequent reign of falsities there, meant by 'the land of graven images'. For 'sword' means falsity engaged in conflict with and destroying truths, 'horses' an enlightened power of understanding, 'chariots' matters of doctrine, 'treasures' cognitions or knowledge of truth and good, 'waters on which there is a drought' the non-existence of truths any longer, and 'the land' the Church.

'Sword' means truth engaged in conflict against falsity, and in the contrary sense falsity engaged in conflict against truths and destroying them, see 2799, 6353, 7102, 8294.

'Horses' means an enlightened power of understanding, 2760-2762, 3217, 6534.

'Chariots' means matters of doctrine, 5321, 8146, 8148, 8215.

'Treasures' means cognitions of truth and good, 10227.

'Waters' means truths, 2702, 3058, 3424, 4976, 5668, 8137, 8138, 8568, 9323, 10238.

'The land' means the Church, see in the places referred to in 9325.

From all this it is evident what 'a drought on the waters, that they may dry up' and what 'the land of graven images' mean.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 8137-8138)


[8] In Habakkuk,

What profit is a graven image since its image-maker has graven it, and a molded image and a teacher of lies, since the image-maker trusts in the thing he himself has made? Habakkuk 2:18.

From these words too it is evident that 'a graven image' and 'a molded image' are not used to mean a graven image and a molded image but falsity that is being made up and the evil to which the falsity lends support; for it speaks of 'the image-maker' and 'a teacher of lies'.

[9] 'Graven image' and 'molded image' have similar meanings in the following places: In Isaiah,

Babel has fallen, and all the graven images of her gods he has broken 3 to the earth. Isaiah 21:9.

In the same prophet,

They will be greatly ashamed, those trusting in a graven image, saying to a molded image, You are our gods. Isaiah 42:17.

In the same prophet,

I told you, and caused you to hear, lest you should say, My idol has done this; my graven image and my molded image has commanded these things. Isaiah 48:5.

In Hosea,

They have called themselves, and gone from their presence 4 . They sacrificed to the baals, and burned incense to graven images. Hosea 11:2.

In Micah,

All the graven images of Samaria will be pounded to pieces, and all her pay as a prostitute will be burned with fire; and all her idols I will make a waste. Micah 1:7.

[10] Since falsities and evils upheld by religious teaching, which are meant by 'graven images and molded images', are forged by a person's self-intelligence under the guidance of his love, the Word also calls them 'the work of human hands', 'the work of the hands of a craftsman', and 'the work of the hands of a workman', as in the following places: In Hosea,

Now they sin more and more, they make for themselves a molded image from their silver, idols by their own intelligence, completely the work of craftsmen. Hosea 13:2.

In Moses,

Cursed is the man who makes a graven or a molded image, an abomination to Jehovah, the work of the hands of the craftsman. Deuteronomy 27:15.

In David,

Their idols are silver and gold, the work of human hands. Psalms 115:4; 135:15.

In Jeremiah,

They burned incense to other gods, and bowed down to the works of their own hands. Jeremiah 1:16.

In the same prophet,

The children of Israel provoked Me to anger through the work of their hands. Jeremiah 32:30; 44:8.

And in the same prophet,

One cuts out wood from the forest, the work of the hands of the workman using an axe. They decorate it with silver and gold; they make it firm with pegs and hammers. Jeremiah 10:3-4.

[11] 'The work of the hands' means that which is a product of the human proprium or self, thus that which is a product of a person's own understanding and a product of his own will; and those things are a product of the self - of both that understanding and that will - that exist as a result of self-love. And this is the origin of all falsities in the Church. Because all falsities are the product of the human self, and 'the work of the hands' means that which originates there, it was forbidden to move an iron tool, axe, or chisel over the stones 5 from which an altar and also the temple were built, as is evident in Moses,

If you make for Me an altar of stones, you shall not build it with hewn ones; for if you move your chisel over it you will profane it. Exodus 20:25.

Also in another place,

If you build an altar of stones to Jehovah you shall not move an iron tool over them. Deuteronomy 27:5.

And in the first Book of Kings,

The house was built of whole stone, as it had been brought [there]; for not a hammer or axe, [nor] any tool of iron, was heard in the house while it was being built. 1 Kings 6:7.

These places have been introduced to enable people to know what they should understand by Aaron's fashioning the gold with a chisel and making a calf of molded [metal] out of it.

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Footnotes:

1. literally, wise

2. literally, the arm of his strength

3. The Latin means hurled but the Hebrew means broken, which Swedenborg has in another place where he quotes this verse.

4. literally, from their faces

5. i.e. it was forbidden to hew the stones

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(Odkazy: Exodus 32:4)

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From Swedenborg's Works

Inbound References:

Arcana Coelestia 10407, 10653


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 355, 386, 433


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


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