Arcana Coelestia #5248

Arcana Coelestia (Potts translation)

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5248. And changed his garments. That this signifies as to what is of the interior natural, by putting on what is suitable, is evident from the signification of “changing,” as being to remove and reject; and from the signification of “garments,” as being what is of the interior natural (of which presently); hence it follows that what was suitable (signified by the new “garments”) was put on. “Garments” are often mentioned in the Word, and thereby are meant things beneath or without, and that cover things above or within; and therefore by “garments” are signified man’s external, consequently his natural, because this covers his internal and spiritual. Specifically by “garments” are signified truths that are of faith, because these cover the goods that are of charity. This signification has its origin from the garments in which spirits and angels appear clothed. Spirits appear in garments devoid of brightness, but angels in garments that are bright and are as it were made of brightness, for the very brightness around them appears as a garment, as appeared the raiment of the Lord when He was transfigured, which was “as the light” (Matthew 17:2), and was “white and flashing” (Luke 9:29). From their garments also the quality of spirits and angels can be known in respect to the truths of faith, because these are represented by garments, but truths of faith such as they are in the natural; for such as they are in the rational appears from the face and its beauty. The brightness of their garments comes from the good of love and of charity, which by shining through causes the brightness. From all this it is evident what is represented in the spiritual world by the garments, and consequently what is meant by “garments” in the spiritual sense. But the garments that Joseph changed, that is, put off, were the garments of the pit or prison, and by these are signified things fallacious and false, which in a state of temptations are excited by evil genii and spirits; and therefore by his “changing his garments” is signified rejection and change in respect to what is of the interior natural, and the garments he put on denoted such things as would be suitable, and therefore the putting on of things suitable is signified. See what has before been said and shown concerning garments: that what is celestial is not clothed, but what is spiritual and natural (n. 297); that “garments” denote truths relatively lower (n. 1073, 2576); that changing the garments was a representative of holy truths being put on, whence also came the changes of garments (n. 4545); that rending the garments was representative of mourning over truth lost and destroyed (see n. 4763 and what is signified by him that came in, not having on a wedding garment (n. 2132).

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From Swedenborg's Works

Inbound References:

Arcana Coelestia 5319, 5433, 5954, 6377, 6524, 6918, 7967, 8459, 8789, 8904, 9003, 9093, 9158, 9212, 9331, 9372, 9391, 9477, 9688, 9814, 9952, 10227, 10258, 10536

The White Horse 1

The New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine 121


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 31, 38, 64, 240

Other New Christian Commentary

Change, to 1

Garments 1


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


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