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Ezekiel 1

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1 Now it happened in the thirtieth year, in the fourth [month], in the fifth [day] of the month, as I was among the captives by the river Chebar, that the heavens were opened, and I saw visions of God.

2 In the fifth [day] of the month, which was the fifth year of king Jehoiachin's captivity,

3 the word of Yahweh came expressly to Ezekiel the priest, the son of Buzi, in the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar; and the hand of Yahweh was there on him.

4 I looked, and behold, a stormy wind came out of the north, a great cloud, with flashing lightning, and a brightness around it, and out of its midst as it were glowing metal, out of the midst of the fire.

5 Out of its midst came the likeness of four living creatures. This was their appearance: they had the likeness of a man.

6 Everyone had four faces, and each one of them had four wings.

7 Their feet were straight feet; and the sole of their feet was like the sole of a calf's foot; and they sparkled like burnished brass.

8 They had the hands of a man under their wings on their four sides; and the four of them had their faces and their wings [thus]:

9 their wings were joined one to another; they didn't turn when they went; each one went straight forward.

10 As for the likeness of their faces, they had the face of a man; and the four of them had the face of a lion on the right side; and the four of them had the face of an ox on the left side; the four of them also had the face of an eagle.

11 Such were their faces. Their wings were spread out above. Two wings of each one touched another, and two covered their bodies.

12 Each one went straight forward: where the spirit was to go, they went; they didn't turn when they went.

13 As for the likeness of the living creatures, their appearance was like burning coals of fire, like the appearance of torches: [the fire] went up and down among the living creatures; and the fire was bright, and out of the fire went forth lightning.

14 The living creatures ran and returned as the appearance of a flash of lightning.

15 Now as I saw the living creatures, behold, one wheel on the earth beside the living creatures, for each of the four faces of it.

16 The appearance of the wheels and their work was like a beryl: and the four of them had one likeness; and their appearance and their work was as it were a wheel within a wheel.

17 When they went, they went in their four directions: they didn't turn when they went.

18 As for their rims, they were high and dreadful; and the four of them had their rims full of eyes all around.

19 When the living creatures went, the wheels went beside them; and when the living creatures were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up.

20 Wherever the spirit was to go, they went; there was the spirit to go: and the wheels were lifted up beside them; for the spirit of the living creature was in the wheels.

21 When those went, these went; and when those stood, these stood; and when those were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up beside them: for the spirit of the living creature was in the wheels.

22 Over the head of the living creature there was the likeness of an expanse, like the awesome crystal to look on, stretched forth over their heads above.

23 Under the expanse were their wings straight, the one toward the other: each one had two which covered on this side, and every one had two which covered on that side, their bodies.

24 When they went, I heard the noise of their wings like the noise of great waters, like the voice of the Almighty, a noise of tumult like the noise of an army: when they stood, they let down their wings.

25 There was a voice above the expanse that was over their heads: when they stood, they let down their wings.

26 Above the expanse that was over their heads was the likeness of a throne, as the appearance of a sapphire stone; and on the likeness of the throne was a likeness as the appearance of a man on it above.

27 I saw as it were glowing metal, as the appearance of fire within it all around, from the appearance of his waist and upward; and from the appearance of his waist and downward I saw as it were the appearance of fire, and there was brightness around him.

28 As the appearance of the rainbow that is in the cloud in the day of rain, so was the appearance of the brightness all around. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of Yahweh. When I saw it, I fell on my face, and I heard a voice of one that spoke.

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Swedenborg

Hlavní výklad ze Swedenborgových prací:

Arcana Coelestia 9457, 9509

Apocalypse Revealed 36, 322, 945

Conjugial Love 26

The Lord 52

Sacred Scripture 97

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 124


Další odkazy Swedenborga k této kapitole:

Arcana Coelestia 49, 425, 908, 934, 1042, 1992, 2162, ...

Apocalypse Revealed 14, 49, 239, 245, 466, 614, 629, ...

Divine Providence 134

The Lord 48

True Christian Religion 157, 260


Odkazy ze Swedenborgových nevydaných prací:

Apocalypse Explained 69, 70, 77, 239, 253, 277, 279, ...

Coronis (An Appendix to True Christian Religion) 60

Spiritual Experiences 255

Scriptural Confirmations 2, 4, 22, 52

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Vysvětlení slova/fráze

thirtieth
'Thirty' has a twofold significance because it is is the product of five and six, and also three and ten. From five multiplied by six,...

fourth
'The fourth watch' signifies the first state of the church at break of day, when good begins to act by truth.

month
'A month' has respect to the state of truth in a person. 'A month' signifies a full state. Month,' as in Genesis 29, signifies the...

fifth
Five also signifies all things of one part.

river
'Rivers' signify truths in abundance serving the rational self, and so, the understanding, for the purpose of doctrine and life. 'Rivers' or 'floods' signify temptations....

heavens
Heavens are celestial and spiritual things. Consequently, they are inmost things, both of the Lord's kingdom in heaven the and in the earth. This also...

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

saw
To look,' as in Genesis 18:22, signifies thinking, because seeing denotes understanding. Look not back behind thee,' as in Genesis 19:17, means that Lot, who...

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...

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...

yahweh
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...

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...

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...

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

Stormy wind
'A stormy wind' and 'an overflowing shower,' as in Ezekiel 13:11-13, signify the desolation of falsity.

Wind
Because a nearer and stronger divine influx through the heavens disperses truths among the wicked, 'wind' signifies this dispersion of truth and the resulting conjunction...

came
As with common verbs in general, the meaning of “come” in the Bible is highly dependent on context – its meaning is determined largely by...

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...

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;...

Cloud
In Isaiah 19:1, "Jehovah rides upon a light cloud, and comes into Egypt", signifies the visitation of the natural man from spiritual-natural Divine Truth, for...

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

four
The number "four" in the Bible represents things being linked together or joined. This is partly because four is two times two, and two represents...

living creatures
Animals in general represent our spiritual activity, the things we do on a spiritual level. This can mean forming thoughts, ideas, intellectual concepts; it can...

living
'Lives' is used in the plural, because of the will and understanding, and because these two lives make one.

one
A company might have executives setting policy and strategy, engineers designing products, line workers building them, managers handling personnel and others handling various functions. They...

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...

four wings
By the four wings, as of a fowl, on the back of the third beast, signifies confirmations of falsity.

wings
'Wings' signify spiritual truths. 'Wings,' when related to the Lord, signify the divine spiritual. In the opposite sense, 'wings' relate to falsities and rationalizations from...

feet
The foot, as in Deuteronomy 33:3, signifies an inferior principle. To set the right foot on the sea and the left on the earth, as...

calf
Calves of the lips (Hos 14:2) are confessions from the affection of truth.

foot
The foot, as in Deuteronomy 33:3, signifies an inferior principle. To set the right foot on the sea and the left on the earth, as...

brass
Brass and iron as in Isaiah 48:4 and Daniel 7:19 signify what is hard.

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...

under
Generally speaking things that are seen as lower physically in the Bible represent things that are lower or more external spiritually. In some cases this...

sides
'Side' signifies good or spiritual love.

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...

face
“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...

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

side
'Side' signifies good or spiritual love.

Eagle
Eagle wings, referred to in Daniel 7:3, signify rational principles grounded in man's proprium.

two
The number "two" has two different meanings in the Bible. In most cases "two" indicates a joining together or unification. This is easy to see...

touched
Imagine having your mother touch your cheek. Then imagine having your spouse or someone you love romantically touch your cheek. Then imagine having a baby...

covered
The "high mountains being covered " (Gen. 7:19) signifies that all the good things of charity were extin­guished.

go
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...

burning
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...

Coals
Coals of fire being scattered over the cities (Ezek. 10:1, 7), signify that men were to be left to their wild lusts, rather than they...

fire
Coals of fire being scattered over the cities (Ezek. 10:1, 7), signify that men were to be left to their wild lusts, rather than they...

lightning
'Lightning' is the radiance and brilliance of God's truth.

returned
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...

wheel
'Wheels,' as in Exodus 14:25, signify the power of proceeding and divine intelligence. 'Wheels,' as in Isaiah 5:28, signify the doctrine of natural truth. 'Wheels,'...

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

wheels
'Wheels,' as in Exodus 14:25, signify the power of proceeding and divine intelligence. 'Wheels,' as in Isaiah 5:28, signify the doctrine of natural truth. 'Wheels,'...

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...

Beryl
'Beryl,' as in Daniel 10:6, signifies the good of charity and faith. Beryl is a sparkling precious stone.

High
'Height' signifies what is inward, and also heaven.

Full
'To satiate' relates to the extent of a person's will, for good or evil.

eyes
'Pairs of hands, eyes, etc.' relate to the will and understanding, or to good and truth. The right side to the will or good, and...

lifted
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stood
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head
The head is the part of us that is highest, which means in a representative sense that it is what is closest to the Lord....

expanse
The firmament, as in Genesis 1, signifies the internal man. The firmament of heaven is mutual love.

stretched
The hand in the Bible represents power, which is easy to understand, so to reach out or stretch out the hand means to exercise power,...

heads
The head is the part of us that is highest, which means in a representative sense that it is what is closest to the Lord....

heard
'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,...

noise of their wings
'The voice of wings,' as in Revelation 9:9, signifies rationalizations, because 'to fly' signifies perceiving and instructing.

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

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

almighty
'Shaddai,' as in Genesis 43:14, signifies temptation, and consolation after temptation. This is because the ancients called the one and only God by various names...

throne
'The Lord's throne' signifies, in general, the whole heaven, and specifically, the spiritual heaven, and by extension, divine truth proceeding, and so, everything of heaven...

sapphire
'Precious stones,' in application to the Word, symbolizes the Divine truth of the Word in its literal sense which the Divine truth in its spiritual...

Sapphire stone
A sapphire stone is the quality of the literal sense of the Word, when the internal sense is perceived in it.

stone
Stones in the Bible in general represent truths, or things we know concerning the Lord and what He wants from us and for us in...

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...

day of
'Day of vengeance' signifies a state of damnation.

fell
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...

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...

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Arcana Coelestia # 9391

Arcana Coelestia (Elliott translation)      

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9391. 'And they offered burnt offerings, and sacrificed peace offerings - young bulls - to Jehovah' means a representative sign of worship of the Lord springing from good, and from truth rooted in good. This is clear from the representation of 'burnt offerings and sacrifices' as worship of the Lord in general, dealt with in 922, 6905, 8936, worship of the Lord springing from the good of love being meant specifically by 'burnt offerings' and worship of Him springing from the truth of faith rooted in good by 'sacrifices', 8680; and from the meaning of 'young bulls' as the good of innocence and charity in the external or natural man, dealt with below. The beasts or animals that were sacrificed were signs of the nature of the goodness and truth from which worship sprang, 922, 1823, 2180, 3519; gentle and useful beasts mean celestial realities which are aspects of the good of love and spiritual realities which are aspects of the truth of faith, and this was why they were used in sacrifices, see 9280. The reason why 'a young bull' means the good of innocence and charity in the external or natural man is that members of the herd were signs of the affections for goodness and truth present in the external or natural man, while members of the flock were signs of the affections for goodness and truth present in the internal or spiritual man, 2566, 5913, 6048, 8937, 9135. Members of the flock were lambs, she-goats, sheep, rams, and he-goats; and those of the herd were bulls or oxen, young bulls or oxen, and calves. Lambs and sheep were signs of the good of innocence and charity present in the internal or spiritual man; consequently calves and young bulls, being of a more tender age than fully-grown bulls, were signs of a like good in the external or natural man.

[2] The fact that 'young bulls' and 'calves' have this meaning is clear from places in the Word where they are mentioned, for example in Ezekiel,

The feet of the four living creatures were straight feet, and the hollows of their feet were like the hollow of a calf's foot. 1 And they sparkled like a kind of burnished bronze. Ezekiel 1:7.

This refers to the cherubs whom 'the four living creatures' describe. 'The cherubs' are the Lord's protection and providence, guarding against access to Him except through good, see 9277 (end). External or natural good was represented by 'straight feet' 2 and by 'the hollows of feet that were like the hollow of a calf's foot'; for 'the feet' means the things which belong to the natural man, 'straight feet' those which are aspects of good, and 'the hollows of the feet' those which are last and lowest in the natural man. For the meaning of 'the feet' as these things, see 2162, 3147, 3761, 3986, 4280, 4938-4952, 5327, 5328; and for that of the heels, soles, and hollows of the feet, also hoofs, as the last and lowest things in the natural man, 4938, 7729. The reason why the hollows of their feet 'sparkled like a kind of burnished bronze' is that 'bronze' means natural good, 425, 1551, and 'bronze sparkling as if burnished' means good shining with the light of heaven, which is God's truth radiating from the Lord. From this it is evident that 'a calf' means the good of the external or natural man.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 5327-5328)


[3] Similarly in John,

Around the throne were four living creatures full of eyes in front and behind. And the first living creature was like a lion; but the second living creature was like a calf; the third living creature however had a face like a human being; lastly the fourth living creature was like a flying eagle. Revelation 4:6-7.

Here also 'four living creatures', who are cherubs, means the Lord's protection and providence, guarding against anyone's gaining access except through the good of love. Actual protection is achieved by means of truth and the good arising from it, and by means of good and the truth deriving from it. Truth and the good arising from it, in the outward form, are meant by 'a lion' and 'a calf'; and good and the truth deriving from it, in the inward form, are meant by 'the face of a human being' and 'a flying eagle'. 'A lion' means truth from good in its power, see 6367, and therefore 'a calf' means the actual good arising from it.

[4] In Hosea,

Turn back to Jehovah, say to Him, Take away all iniquity and accept that which is good, and we will render the young bulls 3 of our lips. Hosea 14:2.

No one can know what 'rendering the young bulls of the lips' refers to unless he knows what is meant by 'young bulls' and what by 'the lips'. It is evident that the praise (confessio) and thanksgiving which flow from a heart that is good are meant, for it says, 'Turn back to Jehovah, and say to Him, Accept that which is good', and then 'we will render the young bulls of our lips', which stands for offering Jehovah praise and thanksgiving which flow from the forms of good taught by doctrine. For things connected with doctrine are meant by 'the lips', 1286, 1288.

[5] In Amos,

You bring near a reign of violence. 4 They lie on beds of ivory, and eat lambs from the flock, and calves from the midst of the fattening stall. Amos 6:3-4.

These words describe those who abound in cognitions or knowledge of goodness and truth and yet lead an evil life. 'Eating lambs from the flock' means learning forms of the good of innocence which belong to the internal or spiritual man and making them one's own; 'eating calves from the midst of the fattening stall' stands for learning forms of the good of innocence which belong to the external or natural man and making them one's own. For the meaning of 'eating' as making one's own, see 3168, 3513 (end), 3596, 3832, 4745; and for the meaning of 'lambs' as forms of the good of innocence, 3994, 3519, 7840. Since 'lambs' means interior forms of the good of innocence, it follows that 'calves from the midst of the fattening stall' means exterior forms of the good of innocence; for on account of the heavenly marriage it is normal for the Word, especially the prophetical part, to deal with truth whenever it does so with good, 9263, 9314, and also to speak about external things whenever it does so about internal ones. Also 'the fattening stall' and 'fat' mean the good of interior love, 5943.

[6] Likewise in Malachi,

To you, fearers of My name, the Sun of Righteousness will arise, and healing in His wings, that you may go out and grow, like calves of the fattening stall. Malachi 4:2.

In Luke, the father said, referring to the prodigal son who had come back penitent in heart,

Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and shoes on his feet. Furthermore bring the fatted calf and kill it, that we may eat and be glad. Luke 15:22-23.

Anyone who understands nothing more than the literal sense does not believe that deeper things lie hidden in any of this. But in actual fact every one of the details embodies some heavenly idea, such as the details that they were to put the best robe on him, put a ring on his hand and shoes on his feet, and bring out the fatted calf and kill it, in order that they might eat and be glad. 'The prodigal son' means those who have squandered heavenly riches, which are cognitions or knowledge of goodness and truth; 'his return to his father, and confession that he was not worthy to be called his son' means a penitent heart and self-abasement; 'the best robe' which was to be put on him means general truths, 4545, 5248, 5319, 5954, 6914, 6917, 9093, 9212, 9216; and 'the fatted calf' means general forms of good in keeping with those truths. The like is meant by 'calves' and 'young bulls' elsewhere, as in Isaiah 11:6; Ezekiel 39:18; Psalms 29:6; 69:31; as well as those used in burnt offerings and sacrifices, Exodus 29:11-12ff; Leviticus 4:3ff, 13ff; 8:15ff; 9:2; 16:3; 23:18; Numbers 8:8ff; 15:24ff; 28:19-20; Judges 6:25-29; 1 Samuel 1:25; 16:2; 1 Kings 18:23-26, 33.

(Odkazy: Exodus 29:11-14; Judges 6:25-28; Leviticus 4:3-12, 4:13-21, 8:14-17, 8:14; Numbers 8:8-12, 15:24-26, 23:29-30)


[7] The reason why the children of Israel made the golden calf for themselves and worshipped it in place of Jehovah, Exodus 32:1-end, was that Egyptian idolatry persisted in their heart even though they professed belief in Jehovah with their lips. Chief among the idols in Egypt were heifers and calves made of gold. This was because 'a heifer' was a sign of truth on the level of factual knowledge, which is the truth the natural man possesses, while 'a calf' was a sign of good on the same level, which is the good the natural man possesses; and also because gold meant good. Visible images symbolizing this good and that truth which the natural man possesses took the form in that land of calves and heifers made of gold. But when the representative signs of heavenly things there were turned into things belonging to idolatrous practices and finally into those belonging to the practice of magic, the actual representative images there, as in other places, became idols and started to be objects that were worshipped. This was how the forms of idolatry among the people of old and all the magic of Egypt arose.

[8] For the Ancient Church, which came next after the Most Ancient, was a representative Church, all of whose worship consisted in rituals, statutes, judgements, and commandments, which represented Divine and heavenly realities, which are the interior things of the Church. The Church after the Flood was spread throughout a large part of the Asiatic world, and existed also in Egypt. But in Egypt this Church's factual knowledge was developed more fully. Consequently those people excelled all others in knowledge of correspondences and representations, as becomes clear from the hieroglyphics, from the magic and idols there, as well as from the various things mentioned in the Word regarding Egypt. All this being so, 'Egypt' in the Word means factual knowledge in general, in respect both of truth and of good; and it also means the natural, since factual knowledge belongs to the natural man. Such knowledge was also meant by 'a heifer' and 'a calf'.

[9] The Ancient Church, which was a representative Church, was spread throughout a large number of kingdoms, and existed also in Egypt, see 1238, 2385, 7097.

The Church's factual knowledge was more fully developed especially in Egypt, and therefore 'Egypt' in the Word means factual knowledge in both senses, 1164, 1165, 1186, 1462, 4749, 4964, 4966, 5700, 5702, 6004, 6015, 6125, 6651, 6679, 6683, 6692, 6693, 6750, 7779 (end), 7926.

And since truth on the level of factual knowledge and its good are the natural man's truth and good, 'Egypt' in the Word also means the natural, 4967, 5079, 5080, 5095, 5160, 5276, 5278, 5280, 5288, 5301, 6004, 6015, 6147, 6252.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 1164-1165, Arcana Coelestia 5079-5080, Arcana Coelestia 6692-6693)


[10] From all this it is now evident that heifers and calves belonged among the chief idols of Egypt. And they did so because heifers and calves were signs of truth on the level of factual knowledge and its good, which belong to the natural man, even as Egypt itself was a sign of them, so that Egypt and a calf had the same meaning. This accounts for the following that is said regarding Egypt in Jeremiah,

A very beautiful heifer was Egypt; destruction has come from the north. And her hired servants in the midst of her are like calves of the fattening stall. 5 Jeremiah 46:20-21.

'A heifer' is truth on the level of factual knowledge, which belongs to the natural man. 'Hired servants' who are 'calves' are those who do good for the sake of gain, 8002. 'Calves' are accordingly that kind of good which is not in itself good, only delight such as exists with the natural man separated from the spiritual man. This delight, which is in itself idolatrous, is what the children of Jacob indulged in, as they were allowed to reveal and prove in their adoration of the calf, Exodus 32:1-end.

[11] What they did then is also described as follows in David,

They made a calf in Horeb and bowed down to the molded image; and they changed the glory into the effigy of the ox that eats the plant. 6 Psalms 106:19-20.

'Making a calf in Horeb and bowing down to the molded image' means idolatrous worship, which consists of rituals, statutes, judgements, and commandments, but solely in their outward form and not at the same time in their inward form. That nation was restricted to external things devoid of anything internal, see 9320 (end), 9373, 9377, 9380, 9381, and so was idolatrous at heart, 3732 (end), 4208, 4281, 4825, 5998, 7401, 8301, 8871, 8882. 'They changed the glory into the effigy of the ox that eats the plant' means that they forsook the inward things of the Word and the Church and cultivated the outward, which is no more than lifeless factual knowledge. For 'the glory' is the inward aspect of the Word and the Church, see Preface to Genesis 18, and 5922, 8267, 8427; 'the effigy of the ox' is a semblance of good in outward form, since 'the effigy' means a semblance, thus a lifeless imitation, while 'the ox' means good in the natural, thus in outward form, 2566, 2781, 9135; and 'eating the plant' means making it one's own only on the level of factual knowledge, since 'eating' means making one's own, 3168, 3513 (end), 3596, 4745, while 'the plant' means factual knowledge, 7571.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 2135, Arcana Coelestia 9134, 9382)


[12] Because such things were meant by 'the golden calf' which was worshipped by the children of Israel in place of Jehovah, Moses disposed of it in the following manner,

I took your sin which you had made, the calf, and burnt it in the fire, and crushed it by grinding it right down until it was fine as dust; and I threw its dust into the brook descending out of the mountain. Deuteronomy 9:21.

No one knows why the golden calf was treated in this manner unless he knows what being burned in the fire, crushed, ground down, and made fine as dust means, and what the brook descending out of the mountain, into which the dust was thrown, means. It describes the state of those who venerate external things but nothing internal, that is to say, they are people immersed in the evils of self-love and love of the world, and in consequent falsities so far as things from God are concerned, thus so far as the Word is concerned. For 'the fire' in which the image was burned means the evil of self-love and love of the world, 1297, 1861, 2446, 5071, 5215, 6314, 6832, 7324, 7575; 'the dust' into which it was crushed is consequent falsity substantiated from the literal sense of the Word; and 'the brook' coming out of Mount Sinai is God's truth, thus the Word in the letter since this descends out of that truth. Those with whom external things are devoid of anything internal explain the Word to suit their own loves; and, as was so with the Israelites and Jews in former times and still is so at the present day, they see within it earthly and not at all heavenly things.

[13] Much the same as all this was also represented by Jeroboam's calves at Bethel and Dan, 1_Kings 12:26-end; 1_Kings 12:2 Kings 17:16, spoken of as follows in Hosea,

They have made a king, and not by Me; they have made princes, and I did not know. Their silver and their gold they have made into idols for themselves, that they may be cut off. Your calf has deserted [you], O Samaria. For from Israel is this also. A smith has made it, and it is not God; for the calf of Samaria will be broken to 7 pieces. Hosea 8:4-6.

This refers to the perverted understanding and the distorted explanation of the Word by those with whom external things are devoid of anything internal; for they keep to the literal sense of the Word, which they twist around to suit their own loves and ideas conceived from it. 'Making a king, and not by Me', and 'making princes, and I did not know' means hatching out truth and the leading aspects of truth, and doing so in the inferior light that is one's own, not with God's help; for 'a king' in the internal sense means truth, 1672, 2015, 2069, 3009, 4581, 4966, 5044, 5068, 6148, and 'princes' leading aspects of truth, 1482, 2089, 5044.

(Odkazy: 1 Kings 12:26-33)


[14] 'Making their silver and their gold into idols' means perverting knowledge of truth and good obtained from the literal sense of the Word to suit their own desires, while still venerating that knowledge as being holy; even so it is devoid of life because it comes from their self-intelligence. For 'silver' is truth and 'gold' is good which come from God, and for this reason belong to the Word, 1551, 2954, 5658, 6914, 6917, 8932; and 'idols' are religious teachings which are a product of self-intelligence, and which are venerated as being holy, but in fact have no life in them, 8941. From all this it is evident that 'a king' and 'princes', also 'silver' and 'gold', mean falsities arising from evil; for things that arise from the self or proprium arise from evil and consequently are falsities, even though outwardly they look like truths because they have been taken from the literal sense of the Word. From this it is evident what is meant by 'the calf of Samaria which the smith has made and which will be broken to pieces', namely good present in the natural man but not at the same time in the spiritual man, thus what is not good since it has been applied to evil. 'A smith has made it, and it is not God' means that it is a product of the self and does not come from God; and 'being broken to pieces' means being reduced to nothing.

[15] Like things are meant by 'calves' in Hosea,

They sin more and more, and make for themselves a molten image from their silver, idols by their own intelligence, completely the work of craftsmen, saying to them, Those who offer human sacrifice 8 will kiss the calves. Hosea 13:2.

From all this it is now evident what 'calf' and 'young bull' mean in the following places: In Isaiah,

The unicorns will come down with them, and the young bulls with the powerful ones; and their land will become drunk with blood, and their dust will be made fat with fatness. Isaiah 34:7.

In the same prophet,

The fortified city will be solitary, a habitation forsaken and left like a wilderness; there the calf will feed, and there it will lie down and consume its branches. Its harvest will wither. Isaiah 27:10-11.

In Jeremiah,

From the cry of Heshbon even to Elealeh, as far as Jahaz they uttered their voice, from Zoar even to Horonaim, a three year old heifer, for the waters of Nimrim also will become desolations. Jeremiah 48:34.

In Isaiah,

My heart cries out upon Moab, his fugitives flee even to Zoar, a three year old heifer, for at the ascent of Luhith he will go up weeping. Isaiah 15:5.

In Hosea,

Ephraim is a trained heifer, loving to thresh [grain]. Hosea 10:11.

In David,

Rebuke the wild animals of the reeds, the congregation of the strong ones, among the calves of the peoples, trampling on the fragments of silver. They have scattered the peoples; they desire wars. Psalms 68:30.

(Odkazy: Isaiah 27:10)


[16] This refers to the arrogance of those who wish to enter into the mysteries of faith on the basis of factual knowledge, refusing to accept anything at all apart from what they themselves deduce on that basis. Since they see nothing in the superior light of heaven which comes from the Lord, only in the inferior light of the natural world which begins in the self, they seize on shadows instead of light, on illusions instead of realities, in general on falsity instead of truth. Since these people's thinking is insane, because it relies solely on the lowest level of knowledge, they are called 'wild animals of the reeds'; since their reasoning is fierce they are called 'the congregation of the strong ones'; and since they dispel truths that still remain and are spread around among the forms of good of those governed by the Church's truths, they are said 'to trample on the fragments of silver among the calves of the peoples', and in addition 'to scatter the peoples', that is, the Church itself together with its truths. The longing to attack and destroy these truths is meant by 'desiring wars'. From all this it is again evident that 'calves' are forms of good.

[17] In Zechariah 12:4 it says, 'Every horse of the peoples I will strike with blindness'; and 'horse of the peoples' means the ability to understand truths which exists with everyone who belongs to the Church, since 'a horse' means the power of understanding truth, 2761. But in Psalms 68:30 quoted above it speaks of 'trampling on the fragments of silver' and 'scattering the peoples among the calves of the peoples'. 'Trampling on' and 'scattering' mean casting down and dispelling, 258; 'silver' means truth, 1551, 2954, 5658, 6112, 6914, 6917, 7999, 8932; and 'the peoples' means those belonging to the Church who are governed by truths, 2928, 7207, thus also the Church's truths, 1259, 1260, 3295, 3581, so that 'the calves of the peoples' means the forms of good governing the will of those who belong to the Church.

(Odkazy: Arcana Coelestia 1259-1260)


[18] Further evidence that forms of good are meant by 'calves' is clear in Jeremiah,

I will give the men who transgressed My covenant, who did not keep the terms of the covenant which they made before Me, that of the calf which they cut in two in order that they might pass between its parts - the princes of Judah, and the princes of Jerusalem, the royal ministers and the priests, and all the people of the land who passed between the parts of the calf - I will give them into the hand of their enemies, that their dead bodies may be food for the birds of the air and the beasts of the earth. Jeremiah 34:18-20.

No one can know what 'the covenant of the calf' and what 'passing between its parts' describe unless he knows what is meant by 'a covenant', 'a calf', and 'cutting it into two parts', and also what is meant by 'the princes of Judah and of Jerusalem, the royal ministers and the priests, and the people of the land'. Plainly some heavenly arcanum is meant. Nevertheless that arcanum comes into the open and can be understood when it is known that 'a covenant' means being joined together, 'a calf' means good, 'a calf cut into two parts' means good emanating from the Lord on one hand and good received by a person on the other; that 'the princes of Judah and of Jerusalem, and the royal ministers and the priests, and the people of the land' are the truths and forms of good which the Church has from the Word; and that 'passing between the parts' means being joined together. Once all this is known it becomes evident that the internal sense of these words in Jeremiah is this: With that nation good emanating from the Lord was not at all joined to but stood apart from good received by a person through the Word, and therefore through the Church's truths and forms of good. The reason for this was that they were restricted to external things, devoid of anything internal.

[19] The same thing is implied by the covenant of the calf with Abram, referred to as follows in the Book of Genesis,

Jehovah said to Abram, Take for Me 9 a three year old heifer, and a three year old she-goat, and a three year old ram, and a turtle dove and a fledgling. And he took for himself all these, and parted each of them down the middle and laid each part opposite the other; but the birds he did not cut apart. And birds of prey came down on the carcasses, and Abram drove them away. And as the sun was going down a deep sleep came over Abram, and, behold, a dread of a great darkness was coming over him. On that day Jehovah made a covenant with Abram. Genesis 15:9-12, 18.

'A dread of great darkness coming over Abram' was a sign of the state of the Jewish nation, that they were in greatest darkness so far as truths and forms of good which the Church has from the Word were concerned. They were in such darkness because they were restricted to external things devoid of anything internal, as a consequence of which their worship was idolatrous. For the worship of anyone restricted to external things devoid of anything internal is idolatrous, because his heart and soul when he engages in worship is not in heaven but in the world. Nor does he respect the holy things of the Word from any heavenly love present in him, only an earthly love. This state of that nation is what the prophet described by 'the covenant of the calf which they cut into two parts, between which they passed'.

-----
Footnotes:

1. literally, The feet of the four living creatures [were] a straight foot, and the hollow of their feet [was] like the hollow of a calf's foot.

2. The Latin here (pedem dextrum) means right foot; but to judge from the actual quotation of Ezek:1:7, pedem rectum is intended, which can mean right foot rather than straight foot.

3. i.e. praises or sacrifices of praise

4. literally, You attract a habitation of violence

5. i.e. mercenaries who are like fat bulls

6. i.e. grass or herbage

7. literally, will become or will be made into

8. literally, Those sacrificing a human being

9. The Latin means you but the Hebrew means Me.

-----

(Odkazy: Exodus 24:5)

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Arcana Coelestia 9412, 9688, 9755, 9780, 9781, 9818, 9990, 10021, 10023, 10122, 10129, 10132, 10137, 10156, 10210, 10227, 10283, 10284, 10292, 10400, 10407, 10421, 10437, 10546

The White Horse 12

The New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine 51, 221, 261


Odkazy z nepublikovaných prací E. Swedenborga:

Apocalypse Explained 195, 235, 240, 329, 386, 388, 701

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