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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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,' 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...

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...

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

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

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...

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...

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...

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

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' denote things fashioned from man’s own intelligence.

'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...

'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...

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...

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...

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

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...

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,' 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...

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

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.

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...

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...

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

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, 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...

“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...

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

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

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...

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...

'Hills' signify the good of charity.

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...

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

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

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...

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...

'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...

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...

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...

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...

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;...

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...

'Shafts' or 'arrows' signify truths and spiritual truth.

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...

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...

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...

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

'What satisfies' is what nourishes the soul.

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

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...

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,...

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...

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

'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...

'Inhabit' refers to good.

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

'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...

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

'Side' signifies good or spiritual love.

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

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

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...

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

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

'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.

'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...

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...

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...

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...

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...

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

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,'...

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

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

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

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...

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...

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

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.

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

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

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,...

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...

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...

"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...

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

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

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

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

'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...

'To repay' denotes making amends by truth.

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...

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,...

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

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

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...

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

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...

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

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.

'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...

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

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

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

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

Wild beasts
'Wild beasts' denote affections and lusts.

'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...

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

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

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

'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...

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...

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...

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...

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...

'Shew' signifies instruction to the life.

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

'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...

'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...

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

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,"...

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

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

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...

'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...

'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 # 5044

Arcana Coelestia (Elliott translation)      

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5044. 'And the governor of the prison-house gave' means the truth governing in a state of temptations. This is clear from the meaning of 'the governor (or the prince)' as the primary and so governing truth, dealt with below; and from the meaning of 'the prison-house' as the laying waste of falsity, and therefore temptation, dealt with above in 5038, 5039, 5043. What the truth governing in a state of temptations is must first be discussed. With all who are undergoing temptations truth from the Lord is flowing in, and this truth rules and governs their thoughts, uplifting them every time they are given to doubt and also to feelings of despair. This truth is what that governing truth is, and it is the kind of truth which they have learned from the Word and from doctrine and which they themselves have confirmed. Other kinds of truth may also be called on at such times, but these do not govern those persons interiorly. Sometimes the truth governing them does not make itself clearly visible in their understanding but lies obscured, yet continues to govern. For the Lord's Divine flows into that governing truth and in so doing keeps the interior parts of the mind within its domain, so that when it comes out into the light the person undergoing temptation receives comfort from it and is uplifted by it.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 5038-5039)

[2] Not the actual truth but an affection for it is what the Lord uses to govern those undergoing temptations; for the Divine does not flow into anything except that which is regarded with affection. Truth that has been implanted and become rooted in a person interiorly has been implanted and become rooted there through affection. Absolutely nothing grows there without affection. Truth that has been implanted and become rooted through affection sticks in the mind, and it is recollected through an affection for it. Furthermore when that truth is recollected it also manifests the affection attached to it, an affection which in that person is a reciprocal one. This being what goes on in a person who undergoes temptations, no one is therefore allowed to experience any spiritual temptation until he reaches adult years and so has acquired some truth by means of which he may be governed. Without that truth he goes under, in which case his latter state is worse than his former one. From all this one may see what is implied by the truth governing in a state of temptations, meant by 'the governor of the prison-house'.

[3] The reason 'a prince (or a governor)' means a primary truth is that 'a king' in the internal sense means the truth itself, 1672, 1728, 2015, 2069, 3009, 3670, 4575, 4581, 4789, 4966, and consequently because 'princes' are the king's chief subjects the primary features of that truth are meant by them. For this meaning of 'princes', see 1482, 2089; yet because those two paragraphs have not shown that meaning from other places in the Word, let some be introduced here: In Isaiah,

To us a boy is born, to us a son is given, on whose shoulder will be the government 1 - the prince of peace, increasing government 2 and peace [to which] there will be no end. Isaiah 9:6-7.

This refers to the Lord. 'The government upon his shoulder' means all Divine Truth in the heavens originating in Him, for the heavens are distinguished into separate principalities in keeping with the varieties of truth derived from good, which also explains why angels are called principalities. 'Peace' means the state of bliss in the heavens which inmostly affects what is good and true, 3780. This is why the Lord is called 'the prince of peace' and why it speaks of Him 'increasing government and peace to which there will be no end'.

[4] In the same prophet,

The princes of Zoan are foolish, the wise counsellors of Pharaoh. How do you say to Pharaoh, I am a son of the wise, a son of the kings of old? The princes of Zoan have become fools, the princes of Noph deluded, and they have led Egypt astray, the corner-stone of the tribes. Isaiah 19:11, 13.

This refers to Egypt, by which the Church's factual knowledge is meant, 4749, and so natural truth, which is the last and lowest degree of order. For the same reason Egypt is here called 'the corner-stone of the tribes', for by 'the tribes' are meant all aspects of truth in their entirety, 3858, 3862, 3926, 3939, 4060. Here however 'Egypt' is factual knowledge that perverts the truths known to the Church, and so is truths in the lowest degree of order that have been falsified, meant by 'the princes of Zoan and the princes of Noph'. The reason Egypt calls itself 'a son of the kings of old' is that the factual knowledge which existed in that land had its origin in the truths known to the Ancient Church. Actual truths are meant by 'kings', as shown above, and the truths known to the Ancient Church by 'the kings of old'.

[5] In the same prophet,

Asshur does not think what is right and his heart does not consider what is right, for his heart is to destroy, and to cut off nations not a few, for he says, Are not my princes kings? Isaiah 10:7-8.

'Asshur' stands for reasoning about Divine truths which gives rise to falsities, and so stands for perverted reason, 1186. Truths falsified in this way, that is, falsities, which are the product of reasoning and look altogether like truths, are meant when Asshur says 'Are not my princes kings?' As long as a person's mind is fixed on the historical sense of the letter he cannot see or consequently believe that 'Asshur' means reasoning, and that 'princes who are kings' means major falsities which are regarded as supreme truths. Still less can he believe this if he refuses to entertain the idea that there is something holier and more universal within the Divine Word than that which is seen in the literal sense. Yet in the internal sense 'Asshur' is used to mean in the Word nothing else than reason and reasoning, and 'kings' to mean actual truths, 'princes' the primary features of truth. Also, those in heaven have no knowledge as to what or who 'Asshur' may be, besides which angels put away from themselves the idea of a king or a prince; and when they detect this idea residing with man they transfer it to the Lord and then perceive that which goes forth from the Lord and which is the Lord's in heaven, namely His Divine Truth going forth from His Divine Good.

[6] In the same prophet,

Asshur will fall by the sword, not of man (vir), and a sword, not of man (homo), will devour him. Also his rock will pass away by reason of terror, and his princes will be dismayed by the ensign. Isaiah 31:8-9.

This too refers to Egypt, by which the Church's factual knowledge once it has been perverted is meant. Reasoning based on known facts regarding Divine truths which leads to perversion and falsification is meant by 'Asshur', those perverted and falsified truths being 'his princes'. 'The sword by which Asshur will fall' is falsity engaged in conflict with truth and bringing about the devastation of it, 2799, 4499.

In the same prophet,

The strength of Pharaoh will become shame for you, and trust in the shadow of Egypt ignominy, when his princes will be in Zoan. Isaiah 30:3-4.

'Princes in Zoan' stands for truths that have been falsified, and so stands for falsities, as above.

[7] In the same prophet,

The spoon-bill and the duck will possess it, and the owl and the raven will dwell in it; and he will stretch over it the line of emptiness, and the plumb-line of a waste place. Let them call its nobles who are not there a kingdom, and all its princes will be nothing. Isaiah 34:11-12.

'The spoon-bill', 'the duck', 'the owl', 'the raven' stand for varieties of falsity which arise when Divine truths in the Word are rendered valueless. The desolation and laying waste of truth is meant by 'the line of emptiness and the plumb-line of a waste', while the falsities, which are primary truths so far as the people described here are concerned, are meant by 'its princes'. In the same prophet,

I will render the princes of holiness profane, and I will give Jacob to utter destruction and Israel to reproaches. Isaiah 43:28.

'Rendering the princes of holiness profane' refers to holy truths. The annihilation of the truth known to the Church - the internal Church and the external - is meant by 'giving Jacob to utter destruction and Israel to reproaches', 'Jacob' being the external Church and 'Israel' the internal, see 4286.

[8] In Jeremiah,

There will enter through the gates of this city kings and princes seated on the throne of David, riding in chariots and on horses, they and their princes. Jeremiah 17:25.

Anyone who understands the Word at this point according to its historical sense cannot know that anything deeper and holier lies hidden within these words than the idea that kings and princes will enter through the gates of the city in chariots and on horses, from which he gathers that the duration of the kingdom is meant. But one who is aware of what is meant by 'city' in the internal sense, and what is meant by 'kings', 'princes', 'the throne of David', and 'riding in chariots and on horses' sees deeper and holier matters in this description. For 'the city', which is Jerusalem, means the Lord's spiritual kingdom, 2117, 3654; 'kings' Divine Truths, as shown above; 'princes' the primary features of truth; 'the throne of David' the Lord's heaven, 1888; and 'riding in chariots and on horses' the existence in the Church of a spiritual understanding, 2760, 2761, 3217.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 2760-2761)

[9] In the same prophet,

O sword against the Chaldeans and against the inhabitants of Babel, and against its princes and against its wise men! O sword against the liars! O sword against its horses and against its chariots! Jeremiah 50:35-37.

'Sword' stands for truth engaged in conflict with falsity, and for falsity in conflict with truth and laying it waste, 2799, 4499. 'The Chaldeans' stands for those who profane truths, and 'the inhabitants of Babel' for those who profane good, 1182, 1283, 1295, 1304, 1307, 1308, 1321, 1322, 1326, 1327 (end). 'Princes' stands for falsities, which to such people are primary truths. 'Horses' stands for the Church's possession of understanding, and 'chariots' for its doctrinal teaching, the laying waste of these being meant by 'a sword against its horses and against its chariots'.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 1307-1308, 1321-1322, 1326-1327)

[10] In the same prophet,

How in His anger the Lord covers the daughter of Zion with a cloud! The Lord has swallowed up - He has not spared - all the dwelling-places of Jacob. He has destroyed in His wrath the strongholds of the daughter of Judah; He has cast them down to the ground; He has profaned the kingdom and her princes. The gates have sunk into the ground; He has broken in pieces her bars; her king and princes are among the nations. Lamentations 1:1, 2, 9.

'The daughter of Zion and Judah' stands for the celestial Church, in this case for that Church when it has been destroyed. 'The kingdom' stands for the truths of doctrine there, 2547, 4691, 'king' for truth itself, and 'princes' for the primary features of this truth.

(Odkazy: Lamentations 2:1-2, 2:9)

[11] In the same prophet,

Our skins have been blackened like an oven because of the storms of famine; they have ravished women in Zion, virgins in the cities of Judah. Princes have been hung up by their hands. Lamentations 5:10-12.

'Princes hung up by their hands' stands for the fact that truths have been made profane, for being hung up represented the damnation brought about by profanation. And because being hung up represented that profanation the command was also given that when the people went whoring after Baalpeor and worshipped their gods, the princes were to be hung up before the sun, Numbers 25:1-4, since 'to go whoring after Baalpeor and to worship their gods' was to make worship profane.

In Ezekiel,

The king will mourn, and the prince will be wrapped in stupidity, and the hands of the people of the land will be all atremble; I will deal with them in their way. Ezekiel 7:27.

Here likewise 'the king' stands for truth in general, and 'the prince' for the primary features of it.

[12] In the same prophet,

The prince who is in the midst of them will be carried on the shoulder under darkness and will go forth; they will dig through the wall to lead out through it; he will cover his face, so that with the eye he does not see the earth. Ezekiel 12:12.

Here it is quite evident that 'the prince' does not mean a prince but truth known to the Church. When the words 'will be carried on the shoulder under darkness' are used in reference to it, the meaning is that total power is used to bear away among falsities, 'darkness' meaning falsities. 'Covering the face' means that truth is completely out of sight; 'so that with the eye he does not see the earth' means that nothing of the Church is visible, 'earth' or 'land' meaning the Church, see 661, 1066, 1067, 1262, 1413, 1607, 1733, 1850, 2117, 4535. In Hosea,

The children of Israel will sit many days with no king and no prince, and no sacrifice, and no pillar, and no ephod, and no teraphim. Hosea 3:4.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 662, 1068, Arcana Coelestia 2117-2118, Arcana Coelestia 2928, 3355, 4447)

[13] And in David,

All glorious is the king's daughter within, in her clothing with gold interweavings; in embroidered robes she will be led to the king. Instead of your fathers will be your sons; you will set them as princes in the whole earth. Psalms 45:13-14, 16.

'The king's daughter' means the Lord's spiritual kingdom. It is called His spiritual kingdom by virtue of the Lord's Divine truth, which in this instance is described by means of 'clothing consisting of gold interweavings and of embroidered robes'. 'Sons' are the truths of that kingdom which are derived from the Lord's Divine, which are going to be 'the princes', that is, the primary features of it.

'The prince' who is described - he and his possession in the New Jerusalem and in the new land - in Ezekiel 44:3; 45:7-8, 17; 46:8, 10, 12, 16, 18; 48:21, means, in general, truth that is derived from the Lord's Divine. For 'the New Jerusalem' in these places, 'the New Temple', and 'the new land' are used to mean the Lord's kingdom in heaven and on earth, which kingdom is described here in Ezekiel by means of representatives such as figure elsewhere in the Word.


1. literally, principality or princely rule

2. literally, multiplying the principality or princely rule


(Odkazy: Genesis 39:22; Psalms 45:13-16)

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Inbound References:

Arcana Coelestia 5043, 5047, 5082, 5236, 5290, 5313, 5321, 5323, 5619, 5922, 6015, 6087, 6125, 6148, 6410, 6413, 6432, 6508, 6524, 6651, 6659, 6742, 6745, 6766, 7351, 7524, 8142, 8314, 8330, 8491, 8712, 8904, 9093, 9139, 9144, 9146, 9212, 9222, ...

The New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine 1, 121, 148, 200

References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 27, 29, 63, 236, 365

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