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.

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, 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...

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...

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.

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...

A help-meet for him,' or 'a help as before him,' as mentioned in Genesis 2:18, signifies proprium, or what is one's own. However, whereas the...

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.

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...

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...

'Hills' signify the good of charity.

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...

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 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...

'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.

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' 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...

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 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
'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...

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...

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...

'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...

'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...

'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 # 5354

Arcana Coelestia (Elliott translation)      

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5354. 'And the name of the second he called Ephraim' means a new area of understanding within the natural, and the essential nature of it. This is clear from the meaning of 'the name' and 'calling the name' as the essential nature, dealt with in 144, 145, 1754, 1896, 2009, 2724, 3006, 3421; and from the representation of 'Ephraim' as the area of understanding within the natural, dealt with below. What the new area of understanding and what the new area of will are, meant by 'Ephraim and Manasseh', must be stated first. It is indeed well known in the Church that a person must be born again, that is, be regenerated, so that he may enter the kingdom of God. This is well known because the Lord has declared it quite explicitly in John 3:3, 5; yet What being born again implies is still known to only a few. And the reason for this is that few know what good and evil are. The reason people do not know what good and evil are is that they do not know what charity towards the neighbour is. If they did know what this was they would also know what good was, and from good what evil was; for everything is good that springs out of genuine charity towards the neighbour.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 144-145)

[2] But with no one can this good have its origin in the person himself, for it is something utterly heavenly flowing into him from the Lord. This heavenly good is flowing in constantly, but evils and falsities stand in the way and prevent the reception of it. So that it may be received therefore it is necessary for the person to remove the evils and, so far as he possibly can do so, the falsities too, and thereby bring himself into a condition to receive that good flowing in. When, after evils have been removed, he accepts the inflow of good he acquires a new will and a new understanding. The new will enables him to feel a sense of delight in doing good to his neighbour without any selfish end in view, and the new understanding enables him to take delight in learning what goodness and truth are for their own sakes and for the sake of the life he should lead. Because this new understanding and new will are brought into being by what flows in from the Lord, the person who has been regenerated therefore acknowledges and believes that the goodness and truth for which he feels an affection do not originate in himself but in the Lord, and also that what does originate in himself or is properly his own is nothing but evil.

[3] From all this one may see what is meant by being born again, and also what is meant by a new will and a new understanding. But regeneration, which brings the new will and the new understanding into being, does not take place in a single instant. Rather, it is taking place from earliest childhood through to the final phase of life, and after that for ever in the next life; and it is accomplished by Divine means that are countless and beyond description. In himself the human being is nothing but evil which is constantly radiating from him as if from a furnace and is constantly trying to smother good while it is still being born. The removal of that kind of evil and the firm implantation of good in its place cannot be effected except through the whole course of a person's life; nor can it be effected except by Divine means which are countless and beyond description. At the present time scarcely anything is known about these means, for the reason that people do not allow themselves to be regenerated. Nor do they believe that regeneration is anything, because they do not believe in a life after death. The process by which regeneration takes place, a process involving things beyond description, constitutes the major part of angelic wisdom; and that process is of such a nature that no angel can ever completely exhaust all there is to know about it. This is the reason why in the internal sense of the Word it is the chief matter that is dealt with.

[4] It is evident from very many places in the Word that 'Ephraim' means a new understanding within the natural, above all in the prophet Hosea, who makes many references to Ephraim, the following among them,

I know Ephraim, and Israel is not hidden from Me, that you have altogether committed whoredom, O Ephraim; Israel has been defiled. Israel and Ephraim will collapse through their iniquity; Judah also will collapse with them. Ephraim will become a lonely place on the day of reproach. 1 And I will be like a moth to Ephraim, and like a worm to the house of Joseph. And Ephraim saw his sickness, and Judah his wound; and Ephraim went to Assyria and sent to King Jareb, and he could not cure you. Hosea 9:3, 5, 9, 11-13.

After this in the same prophet,

When I healed Israel the iniquity of Ephraim was revealed, and the evils of Samaria; for they practised a lie, and a thief came, a band spread itself outside. And Ephraim was like a silly dove with no heart; they called on Egypt, they went away to Assyria. When they go I will stretch My net over them. Hosea 7:1, 11-12 and following verses.

(Odkazy: Hosea 5:12-13, Hosea 7:12)

[5] And further on in the same prophet,

Israel has been swallowed up, now they are going to be among the gentiles, like a vessel in which there is no desire. When they went up to Assyria [they were like] a wild ass alone by himself; Ephraim procures lovers 2 with a prostitute's hire. Hosea 8:8-9.

Israel will not dwell in Jehovah's land, but Ephraim will return to Egypt, and in Assyria they will eat what is unclean. Hosea 9:3.

Ephraim has encompassed Me with a lie, and the house of Israel with deceit; and Judah will have dominion still with God and with the saints of the Faithful One. 3 Ephraim feeds the wind, and pursues the east wind. All the day long he multiplies lies and devastation and they make a covenant with the Assyrian, and oil is carried down into Egypt. Hosea 11:11; 12:1.

(Odkazy: Hosea 4:17-19, 5:11-14, Hosea 11:12)

[6] Ephraim is referred to by this prophet in many other places besides these, such as Hosea 4:16-18; 5:3, 5, 9, 11-13; 7:8-9; 9:8, 11, 13, 16; 10:6, 11; 11:3, 8-9; 12:8, 14; 13:1, 12; 14:8. In all these places 'Ephraim' is used to mean the area of understanding within the Church, Israel' the spiritual area within it, and 'Judah' the celestial area. Also, since the area of understanding within the Church is meant by 'Ephraim', frequent reference is therefore made to Ephraim going away into Egypt or into Assyria. This is because 'Egypt' means factual knowledge and 'Assyria' reasonings based on this; and factual knowledge and reasonings are things associated with the understanding. For the meaning of Egypt' as factual knowledge, see 1164, 1165, 1186, 1462, 2588, 3325, 4749, 4964, 4966; and for that of 'Asshur' or 'Assyria' as reason or reasoning, 119, 1186.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 1164-1165)

[7] The understanding area of the Church is meant in a similar way by 'Ephraim' in the following places: In Zechariah,

Exult greatly, O daughter of Zion! Make a noise, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king comes to you. I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim, and the horse from Jerusalem, and I will cut off the battle bow; on the other hand he will speak peace to the nations. And his dominion will be from sea to sea, and from the river even to the ends of the earth. I will bend Judah for Me, I will fill Ephraim with the bow; and I will rouse your sons, O Zion, together with your sons, O Javan. Zechariah 9:9-10, 13.

This refers to the Lord's Coming, also to the Church among the gentiles. 'Cutting off the chariot from Ephraim, and the horse from Jerusalem' stands for the entire understanding which the Church possesses. 'Filling Ephraim with the bow' stands for imparting a new understanding. For 'the chariot' means doctrinal teaching, see 5321; 'the horse' means the power of understanding, 2760-2762, 3217, 5321; and 'the bow' too means doctrinal teaching, 2685, 2686, 2709. Doctrinal teaching is dependent on the power of understanding, for to the extent that a person understands it, he believes it; his understanding of doctrinal teaching determines what his faith is like.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 2685-2686)

[8] For this reason the children of Ephraim are called 'archers' in David,

The children of Ephraim who were armed (they were archers) turned back on the day of battle. Psalms 78:9.

In Ezekiel,

Son of man, take a stick and write on it, For Judah and for the children of Israel, his companions. Then take another stick and write on it, Joseph's - the stick of Ephraim and of the whole house of Israel, his companions. After that join them together, one to the other into one stick for you, that both may be one in your 4 hand. Behold, I am about to take the stick of Joseph which is in the hands of Ephraim and of the tribes of Israel his companions, and I will add them who are on it to the stick of Judah, and will make them into one stick, that they may be one stick in My hand. Ezekiel 37:16-17, 19.

Here also 'Judah' is used to mean the celestial area within the Church, 'Israel' the spiritual area within it, and 'Ephraim' the understanding area. The idea that these will be made one through the good of charity is meant by the promise that one stick will be made out of two. For 'a stick' means good which is the good of charity and of works motivated by charity, see 1110, 2784, 2812, 3720, 4943.

[9] In Jeremiah,

It is a day [when] the watchmen will cry from mount Ephraim, Arise, let us go up to Zion, to Jehovah our God. I will be a father to Israel, and Ephraim will be My firstborn. Jeremiah 31:6, 9.

In the same prophet,

I have surely heard Ephraim bewailing, You have chastised me and I was chastised, like an unruly calf. Direct me, that I may be directed. Is not Ephraim a precious son to Me? Is he not a delightful child? For after I have spoken against him I will surely remember him again. Jeremiah 31:18, 20.

In the same prophet,

I will bring back Israel to his own habitation so that he may feed on Carmel and Bashan; and on mount Ephraim and in Gilead his soul will be satisfied. Jeremiah 50:19

In Isaiah,

Woe to the crown of pride, to the drunkards of Ephraim, to the falling flower and the glory of its beauty, which is on the head of a valley of fat ones confused by wine. Isaiah 28:1.

[10] In all these places too 'Ephraim' means the area of understanding within the Church. The area of understanding within the Church is that understanding which members of the Church have about truth and goodness, that is, about matters of doctrine regarding faith and charity. Thus it is the notions, conceptions, or ideas which they possess about these matters. Truth forms the spiritual area of the Church, and good the celestial area. But one member's understanding of truth and goodness is different from another's, and therefore the nature of each member's understanding of truth determines the kind of truth known to him. And the same is so with each person's understanding of goodness.

[11] What the Church's area of will, meant by 'Manasseh', is exactly can be recognized from the area of understanding, which is 'Ephraim'. The nature of the Church's will is similar to that of its understanding in that it varies from one member to another. 'Manasseh' means that area of will in Isaiah,

Through the wrath of Jehovah Zebaoth the earth has been darkened, and the people have become as fuel for the fire; a man will not spare his brother. A man will eat the flesh of his own arm; Manasseh [will consume] Ephraim, and Ephraim Manasseh, and together they are against Judah.

'A man will eat the flesh of his own arm, Manasseh [will consume] Ephraim, and Ephraim Manasseh' stands for the member of the Church when his will acts in opposition to the activity of his understanding, and his understanding acts in opposition to the activity of his will.

(Odkazy: Isaiah 9:19-21)

[12] In David,

God has spoken by means of His holiness, I will exalt, I will divide up Shechem and portion out the valley of Succoth. Gilead is Mine, and Manasseh is Mine; and Ephraim is the strength of My head. Psalms 60:6-7.

In the same author,

Turn Your ear, O Shepherd of Israel, You who lead 5 Joseph like a flock; You who are seated upon the cherubim, shine forth. Before Ephraim and Benjamin and Manasseh stir up Your power. Psalms 80:1-2.

Here also 'Ephraim' stands for the area of understanding within the Church and 'Manasseh' for the area of will there. The same meaning is also evident from the blessing of Ephraim and Manasseh by Jacob before he died, and in addition from the fact that Jacob accepted Ephraim in place of Reuben, and Manasseh in place of Simeon, Genesis 48:3, 5. For Reuben had represented the Church's area of understanding, which is faith in the understanding, or doctrine, 3861, 3866. Also, Simeon had represented faith in action - or obedience and the will to put truth into practice - from which charity springs and through which charity expresses itself; thus he represented truth realized in action, which is good belonging to the new will, 3869-3872.

(Odkazy: Genesis 48:1)

[13] The reason why Jacob, who by then was Israel, blessed Ephraim more fully than Manasseh, by placing his right hand on the former and his left on the latter, Genesis 48:13-20, was the same as the one involved in Jacob's procurement for himself of Esau's birthright. It was also the same as what was involved in the birth of Perez and Zerah, Judah's sons by Tamar; though he was the firstborn, Zerah nevertheless came out after Perez, Genesis 38:18-30. The reason this happened was that the truth of faith, which belongs to the understanding, seems to occupy the first place while a person is being regenerated, and the good of charity, which belongs to the will, seems to occupy the second. But in actual fact good occupies the first place, as is plain to see once the person has been regenerated. On this subject, see 3314, 3539, 3548, 3556, 3563, 3570, 3576, 3603, 3701, 4243, 4244, 4247, 4337, 4925, 4926.


1. Reading correptionis (reproach), which Swedenborg has in another place, for correctionis (correction)

2. literally, loves

3. The Latin means Israel, but the Hebrew means the Faithful One.

4. The Latin means My, but the Hebrew means your.

5. The Latin means He who leads, but the Hebrew means You who lead.


(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 3324-3539, 4243-4244, 4925-4926, 4928, 4930, 4977, Genesis 38:28-30, 38:29, 41:52; Hosea 7:12)

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From Swedenborg's Works

Inbound References:

Arcana Coelestia 5356, 6222, 6236, 6237, 6241, 6249, 6264, 6265, 6267, 6377, 6583, 6584, 7679, 8932, 9325, 9340, 9396, 9553, 9780, 10227, 10283

The New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine 121

References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 39, 193, 222, 236, 316, 336, 355, 376, 386, 440

Other New Christian Commentary

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