True Christian Religion #0

By Emanuel Swedenborg

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THE TRUE CHRISTIAN RELIGION, containing the complete theology of the New Church as foretold by the Lord in Daniel 7:13-14 and in Revelation 21:2

by Emanuel Swedenborg, Servant of the Lord Jesus Christ

Translated from the original Latin by John Chadwick

London, The Swedenborg Society, 1988

Daniel 7:13-14: I was watching in the visions of the night, and I saw the Son of Man coming with the clouds of the heavens. And to him were given dominion and glory and the kingdom, and all peoples, nations and tongues will worship him. His dominion will be a dominion for ever, which will not pass away, and his kingdom one that will not perish.

Revelation 21:1-2, 5, 9-10: I, John, saw a new heaven and a new earth; and I saw the holy city, the New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared like a bride adorned for her husband. And the angel spoke with me, saying, Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb. And he carried me away in the spirit onto a great and high mountain, and showed me the great, holy city of Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God. He that sat on the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said to me, Write, because these words are true and trustworthy.





The oneness of God:

(i) The whole of the Sacred Scripture and all the doctrines extracted from it by churches throughout Christendom teach that there is a God and that He is one. 5-7

(ii) There is a general feeling emanating from God and flowing into men's souls that there is a God and He is one. 8

(iii) That is why there is no nation throughout the world possessed of religion and sound reason which does not acknowledge God and the fact that He is one. 9-10

(iv) There are many reasons why nations and peoples have formed varying ideas of the nature of that one God, and continue to do so. 11

(v) There are many things in the world which can lead the human reason, if it wishes, to grasp and deduce that there is a God and He is one. 12

(vi) If there had not been one God, the universe could not have been created and kept in existence. 13

(vii) Any person who does not acknowledge God is excommunicated from the church and damned. 14

(viii) The church cannot hold together at all in the case of a person who acknowledges not one God, but several. 15

The Divine Being, which is Jehovah

(i) The one God is named Jehovah from His Being, that is, from the fact that He alone is, was and will be, and because He is the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End, Alpha and Omega. 19

(ii) The one God is substance itself and form itself, and angels and men are substances and forms derived from Him; to the extent that they are in Him and He is in them, so far are they images and likenesses of Him. 20

(iii) The Divine Being is Being in itself, and at the same time Coming-into-Being in itself. 21-22

(iv) The Divine Being and Coming-into-Being in itself cannot give rise to another Divine which is Being and Coming-into-Being in itself. Consequently another God of the same essence is impossible. 23

(v) The plurality of gods in ancient times, as well as to-day, was entirely the result of a failure to understand the Divine Being. 24

The infinity or the immensity and the eternity of God

(i) God is infinite, because He is and comes into being in Himself, and everything in the universe is and comes into being from Him. 28

(ii) God is infinite, because He existed before the world did, and thus before space and time came into existence. 29

(iii) Since the making of the world God is non-spatially in space and non-temporally in time. 30

(iv) The infinity of God as predicated of space is called immensity, and as predicated of time is called eternity. Despite these predications His immensity is totally devoid of space and His eternity is totally devoid of time. 31

(v) There is much in the world which can enable enlightened reason to see the infinity of God the Creator. 32

(vi) Every created object is finite, and the infinite is contained in finite objects as in receivers, and in human beings as images of it. 33-34

The Essence of God, which is the Divine Love and the Divine Wisdom

(i) God is Love itself and Wisdom itself, these two making up His Essence. 37

(ii) God is Good itself and Truth itself, because Good refers to Love and Truth to Wisdom. 38

(iii) Since God is Love itself and Wisdom itself. He is Life itself or Life in itself. 39-40

(iv) Love and Wisdom are one in God. 41-42

(v) The essence of love is loving others than oneself, wishing to be one with them and devoting oneself to their happiness. 43-45

(vi) These properties of the Divine Love were the reason the universe was created, and are the reason it is preserved in existence. 46-47

The omnipotence, omniscience and omnipresence of God:

(i) Omnipotence, omniscience and omnipresence are properties of the Divine Wisdom resulting from the Divine Love, 50-51

(ii) The omnipotence, omniscience and omnipresence of God cannot be recognised except through a knowledge of order, and these facts about order: that God is order, and that He introduced order into the universe and all its parts simultaneously with its creation. 52-55

(iii) God's omnipotence proceeds and works in the universe and all its parts in accordance with the laws of His order. 56-58

(iv) God is omniscient, that is, He perceives, sees and knows down to the tiniest detail everything that happens according to order; and from these things also what happens contrary to order. 59-62

(v) God is present everywhere from first to last in His order. 63-64

(vi) Man was created to be a form for Divine Order. 65-67

(vii) Man has from Divine Omnipotence power against evil and falsity, and from Divine Omniscience wisdom about good and truth, and from Divine Omni-presence is in God, to the extent that he lives in accordance with the Divine order. 68-70

The creation of the universe:

No one can form a correct idea of the creation of the universe, unless some universal ideas are first suggested to bring the understanding into a perceptive state. 75

The creation of the universe is described in five accounts of experiences. 76-80


(i) Jehovah God came down and took on Himself human form, in order to redeem and save mankind. 82-84

(ii) Jehovah God came down as the Divine Truth, which is the Word, yet He did not separate the Divine Good from it. 85-88

(iii) God took upon Himself human form in accordance with His Divine order. 89-91

(iv) The Human by which He brought Himself into the world is the Son of God. 92-94

(v) The Lord by acts of redemption made Himself righteousness. 95-96

(vi) By the same acts the Lord united Himself with the Father, and the Father with Him. 97-100

(vii) Thus God became man, and man God, in one person. 101-103

(viii) His progress towards union was His state of exinanition, and the union itself is His state of glorification. 104-106

(ix) From this time on no one from Christian countries can come into heaven, unless he believes in the Lord God the Saviour. 107-108

(x) Additional note, on the state of the church before the Lord's coming, and its state after this event. 109


(i) The real redemption was the conquest of the hells and the ordering of the heavens, and preparation by this means for a new spiritual church. 115-117

(ii) But for that redemption no person could have been saved, nor could the angels have remained unharmed. 118-120

(iii) The Lord thus redeemed not only men, but also angels. 121-122

(iv) Redemption was an entirely Divine deed. 123

(v) This redemption could only be effected by an incarnate God. 124-125

(vi) The passion on the cross was the last temptation which the Lord underwent as the greatest Prophet; this was the means by which He glorified His Human, and was not the redemption. 126-131

(vii) It is a fundamental error on the part of the church to believe that the passion on the cross was the real act of redemption. That error, together with the erroneous belief in three Divine Persons existing from eternity, has so perverted the whole church that there is no remainder of spirituality left in it. 132-133


(i) The Holy Spirit is Divine truth, and also the Divine power and activity which proceeds from the one God, in whom is the Divine Trinity, and so from the Lord God the Saviour. 139-141

(ii) The Divine power and activity meant by the Holy Spirit are, generally speaking, reformation and regeneration, which lead to renewal, quickening, sanctification and justification; and these lead to purification from evils and the forgiveness of sins, and ultimately to salvation. 142-145

(iii) The Divine power and activity meant by the sending of the Holy Spirit, with the clergy takes the particular form of enlightenment and instruction. 146-148

(iv) The Lord confers these benefits on those who believe in Him. 149-151

(v) The Lord works of Himself from the Father, not the reverse. 153-155

(vi) A person's spirit is his mind, and whatever comes from it. 156-157

- Additional Note. 158

The Divine Trinity

(i) There is a Divine Trinity, consisting of Father, Son and Holy Spirit. 164-165

(ii) Those three, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, are the three essentials of a single God, which make one as soul, body and activity do with a person. 166-169

(iii) This Trinity did not exist before the creation of the world, but it was provided and made after the creation of the world, when God became incarnate, and then it was in the Lord God, the Redeemer and Saviour, Jesus Christ. 170-171

(iv) A Trinity of Divine Persons from eternity, or existing before the creation of the world, implies thinking about a Trinity of Gods; and this thought cannot be banished by a verbal confession of belief in one God. 172-173

(v) The Trinity of Persons was unknown to the Apostolic church, but was the invention of the Council of Nicaea, leading to its introduction into the Roman Catholic church, and thus to the churches which split from it. 174-176

(vi) The Trinity as defined by the Council of Nicaea and by Athanasius caused a faith to arise which has perverted the whole Christian church. 177-178

(vii) This is the source of the abomination of desolation and the affliction such as has never been nor shall be, both of which the Lord predicted in Daniel, the Gospels and Revelation 179-181

(viii) Further, unless a new heaven and a new church are founded by the Lord, no flesh can be saved. 182

(ix) From a Trinity of Persons, each of which is individually God, as asserted by the Athanasian Creed, many absurd ideas of various kinds have arisen about God, which are mere fancies and abortions. 183-184


I. The Sacred Scripture, that is, the Word, is Divine truth itself. 189-192

II. The Word contains a spiritual sense unknown up to the present. 193

(i) What the spiritual sense is. 194

- From the Lord there proceed, one after the other, the celestial Divine, the spiritual Divine and the natural Divine. 195

(ii) The spiritual sense is present in every part and detail of the Word. 196-198

- The Lord, when He was in the world, spoke by means of correspondences; so He spoke spiritually as well as naturally. 199

(iii) It is the spiritual sense which makes the Word divinely inspired and holy in every word. 200

(iv) The spiritual sense of the Word has up to the present been unknown. 201-207

(v) The spiritual sense of the Word will in future only be granted to those who are in possession of genuine truths from the Lord. 208

(vi) Remarkable effects produced by the Word from its spiritual sense. 209

III. The literal sense of the Word is the basis, container and support of its spiritual and celestial senses. 210-213

IV. The Divine truth in the literal sense of the Word is in its fulness, holiness and power. 214-216

(i) The truths of the literal sense of the Word are meant by the precious stones forming the foundations of the New Jerusalem described in Revelation, and this is due to correspondence. 217

(ii) The forms of good and truth in the literal sense of the Word are meant by the Urim and Thummim on Aaron's ephod. 218

(iii) The forms of truth and good at the outermost level, such as they are in the literal sense of the Word, are meant by the precious stones in the garden of Eden, in which the king of Tyre is said to have been. 219

(iv) The same things were represented by the curtains, veils and posts of the Tabernacle. 220

(v) Likewise, the external features of the Temple at Jerusalem. 221

(vi) The Word in its glory was represented in the Lord at His transfiguration. 222

(vii) The power of the Word at its outermost level was represented by the Nazirites. 223

(viii) The Word's power is beyond description. 224

V. The doctrine of the church is to be drawn from the literal sense of the Word and supported by it. 225-230

(i) The Word is not to be understood without doctrine. 226-228

(ii) Doctrine is to be drawn from the literal sense of the Word, and proved by means of it. 229-230

(iii) The genuine truth in the literal sense of the Word, on which doctrine is based, is not visible to any but those who are enlightened by the Lord. 231-233

VI. The literal sense of the Word produces a link with the Lord and association with the angels. 234-239

VII. The Word is to be found in all the heavens and is the source of the angels' wisdom. 240-242

VIII. The church depends on the Word, and what the church is like in the case of each person depends upon how he understands the Word. 243-247

IX. The details of the Word all contain a marriage of the Lord and the church, and so a marriage of good and truth. 248-253

X. Heresies can be extracted from the literal sense of the Word, but confirming them leads to damnation. 254-260

- Many things in the Word are appearances of truth, in which genuine truths are hidden. 257

- Fallacies arise through the confirming of appearances of truth. 258

- The literal sense of the Word is a protection for the genuine truths hidden within it. 260

- The literal sense of the Word is represented and meant in the Word by cherubim. 260

XI. The Lord when in the world fulfilled everything in the Word, and thus became the Word, that is, Divine truth, even in its outermost form. 261-263

XII. Before the time of the Word which we have in the world to-day, there was another Word, now lost. 264-266

XIII. The Word also serves to enlighten those who are outside the church and do not possess the Word. 267-272

XIV. If the Word did not exist, no one would know of the existence of God, heaven and hell, and life after death, even less of the Lord. 273-276


I. The Ten Commandments were the height of holiness for the Israelite church; on the holiness of the Ark containing the Law. 283-286

II. The literal sense of the Ten Commandments contains general instructions on belief and life; but their spiritual and celestial senses contain universal instructions. 287-290

III. The First Commandment: There is not to be any other God before my face. 291-296

IV. The Second Commandment: You are not to take the name of Jehovah your God in vain, for Jehovah will not hold anyone guiltless, who takes His name in vain. 297-300

V. The Third Commandment: Remember to keep the Sabbath day holy; for six days you are to labour and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath for Jehovah your God. 301-304

VI. The Fourth Commandment: Honour your father and your mother, so that your days may be long and you may prosper upon earth. 305-308

VII. The Fifth Commandment: You are not to commit murder. 309-312

VIII. The Sixth Commandment: You are not to commit adultery. 313-316

IX. The Seventh Commandment: You are not to steal. 317-320

X. The Eighth Commandment: You are not to bear false witness against your neighbour. 321-324

XI. The Ninth and Tenth Commandments: You are not to covet your neighbour's house, you are not to covet your neighbour's wife, nor his man-servant nor his maid-servant, nor his ox nor his ass, nor anything that is your neighbour's. 325-328

XII. The Ten Commandments contain everything to do with love for God and everything to do with love towards the neighbour. 329-331


Preface: faith is the first thing in time, but charity is the first thing in intention 336

I. Saving faith is in the Lord God the Saviour Jesus Christ. 337-339

- Since He is a visible God, in whom is the invisible God. 339

II. Faith in brief is this, that a person who lives a good life and holds a proper belief is saved by the Lord 340-342

- The leading point of faith in Him is the acknowledgment that He is the Son of God. 342

III. A person acquires faith by approaching the Lord, learning truths from the Word, and living by them. 343-348

(i) The being of faith; the essence of faith; [the coming into being of faith;] the condition of faith; the form of faith. 344ff

(ii) Purely natural faith, as being a firm conviction which pretends to be faith. 345-348

IV. The mass of truths, which cohere as it were in a bundle, raises the level of faith and brings it to perfection. 349-354

(i) The truths of faith are capable of being multiplied to infinity. 350

(ii) Their arrangement is into groupings, thus, so to speak, into bundles. 351

(iii) Faith is perfected in proportion to their volume and coherence. 352-353

(iv) The truths of faith, however numerous they are and however varied they appear, are made one by the Lord. 354

(v) The Lord is the Word, the God of heaven and earth, the God of all flesh, the God of the vineyard or the church, the God of faith, and light itself, truth and everlasting life; this is demonstrated from the Word. 354

V. Faith without charity is no faith, and charity without faith is no charity, and both are lifeless unless the Lord gives them life. 355-361

(i) A person can acquire faith for himself. 356

(ii) A person can acquire charity for himself. 357

(iii) A person can also acquire or himself a life of faith and charity. 358

(iv) But still faith, charity or life in either of them is not in the least created by man, but only by the Lord. 359

(v) The distinction between natural faith and spiritual faith; spiritual faith is under the Lord's guidance contained within natural faith. 360-361

VI. The Lord, charity and faith make one, just as in a person, will and under-standing do; if they are separated, each of them is destroyed, like a pearl collapsing into dust. 362-367

(i) The Lord flows into every human being with all His Divine love, all His Divine wisdom, and so with all His Divine life. 364

(ii) The Lord flows into every human being likewise with the whole essence of faith and charity. 365

(iii) How what flows in from the Lord is received by the person depends upon his condition and form. 366

(iv) The person, however, who separates the Lord, charity and faith is not a form which can receive them, but rather one which destroys them. 367

VII. The Lord is charity and faith in the person, and the person is charity and faith in the Lord. 368-372

(i) It is being linked with God, which affords a person salvation and everlasting life. 369

(ii) A link is impossible with God the Father, but it is possible with the Lord, and through Him with God the Father. 370

(iii) The link with the Lord is reciprocal, so that the Lord is in the person, and he is in the Lord. 371

(iv) This reciprocal link between the Lord and man is created by means of charity and faith. 372

VIII. Charity and faith are present together in good deeds. 373-377

(i) Charity is having good will, and good deeds are doing good from a good will.

(ii) Charity and faith are merely unstable mental concepts unless, when possible, they are realised in deeds and come into existence together in them. 375-376

(iii) Charity alone does not produce good deeds, much less does faith alone, but charity and faith together do. 377

IX. There is true faith, spurious faith and hypocritical faith. 378-381

- From its cradle the Christian church began to be attacked and split by schisms and heresies; what these were. 378

(i) There is only one true faith, and this is in the Lord God the Saviour Jesus Christ, and is possessed by those who believe Him to be the Son of God, the God of heaven and earth, and one with the Father. 379

(ii) Spurious faith is any faith which departs from the true and only faith, and is possessed by those who climb up another way and look upon the Lord not as God, but merely as a human being. 380

(iii) Hypocritical faith is no faith at all. 381

X. The wicked have no faith. 382-384

(i) The wicked have no faith because evil belongs to hell and faith to heaven. 383

(ii) All those in the Christian world have no faith who reject the Lord and the Word, although they lead moral lives, and talk, teach and write rationally, even about faith. 384


I. There are three universal loves, the love of heaven, the love of the world, and self-love. 394-396

(i) The will and the understanding. 397

(ii) Good and truth. 398

(iii) Love in general. 399

(iv) Self-love and the love of the world in particular. 400

(v) The internal man and the external man. 401

(vi) The purely natural and sensual man. 402

II. When the three loves are duly subordinated, they increase a person's perfection; but when they are not, they corrupt and turn him upside down. 403-405

III. Every person taken singly is the neighbour who is to be loved, but he should be loved according to the quality of his good. 406-411

IV. Man collectively, which is one's community, great or small, and as a group of communities, which is one's country, is the neighbour who is to be loved. 412-414

V. The neighbour who is to be loved in a higher degree is the church, and in the highest degree the Lord's kingdom. 415-416

VI. The essence of loving the neighbour is not loving a person, but the good in him. 417-419

VII. Charity and good deeds are two different things, as are wishing well and doing good. 420-421

VIII. Real charity is dealing fairly and faithfully in whatever position, business or work one is engaged in, and with those with whom one comes into contact. 422-424

IX. The kindnesses of charity are giving to the poor and helping the needy, but with prudence. 425-428

X. Some charitable duties are public, some domestic and some private. 429-432

XI. Charitable recreations are lunches, dinners and parties. 433-434

XII. The first thing in charity is to banish evils, the second is to do good deeds which may be of use to the neighbour. 435-438

XIII. In the exercise of charity a person avoids attributing merit to deeds, so long as he believes that all good is from the Lord. 439-442

XIV. When a moral life is at the same time spiritual, this is charity. 443-445

XV. A bosom friendship contracted with a person without regard to his spiritual character is harmful after death. 446-449

XVI. Spurious charity, hypocritical charity and dead charity. 450-453

XVII. Bosom friendship between the wicked is implacable hatred between them. 454-455

XVIII. The linking of love to God and love towards the neighbour. 456-458


The rules and dogmas of the present-day church on free will. 463-465

I. The fact that two trees, one of life and the other of the knowledge of good and evil, were put in the Garden of Eden, means that man was given free will in spiritual matters. 466-469

II. Man is not life, but a receiver of life from God. 470-474

III. So long as a person lives in the world, he is kept midway between heaven and hell, and he is there in spiritual equilibrium. This is free will. 475-478

IV. The fact that evil is permitted, a state enjoyed by everyone's internal man, makes it obvious that man has free will in spiritual matters. 479-482

V. Without free will in spiritual matters the Word would not be of any use, nor in consequence would the church be. 483-484

VI. Without free will in spiritual matters man would have no means of establishing a mutual link with the Lord. The result would be not imputation, but complete predestination, which is a detestable doctrine. 485

Some detestable facts about predestination published. 486-488

VII. But for free will in spiritual matters God would be responsible for evil, and thus there could be no imputation of charity and faith. 489-492

VIII. Anything spiritual to do with the church which enters freely and is freely accepted lasts; anything that does not, does not last. 493-496

IX. A person's will and understanding enjoy this free will; but wrongdoing in both the spiritual and natural worlds is curbed by laws, since otherwise society in either world would cease to exist. 497-499

X. If people did not have free will in spiritual matters, everyone throughout the world could in the course of a single day have been brought to believe in the Lord. But this would be impossible, because what a person does not accept of his own free will does not last. 500-502

- Miracles do not happen at the present day, because they take away free will in spiritual matters and compel. 501


I. Repentance is the first stage in the development of the church in a person. 510-511

II. Contrition, which is said at the present time to precede faith and to be followed by the consolation of the Gospel, is not repentance. 512-515

III. A mere verbal confession that one is a sinner is not repentance. 516-519

IV. Man is born with a tendency to every kind of evil, and if he does not partially remove evils by repentance, he remains subject to them, and if so cannot be saved. 520-524

- What is meant by keeping the law. 523-524

V. Recognition of sin and a person's self-examination are the beginnings of repentance. 525-527

VI. Real repentance is examining oneself, recognising and acknowledging one's sins, appealing to the Lord and beginning a new life. 528-531

VII. True repentance means not only examining what one does in one's life, but also what one intends in one's will to do. 532-534

VIII. Those too repent who do not examine themselves, but still refrain from evil actions because they are sins. This kind of repentance is practised by those who perform charitable deeds for religious reasons. 535-537

IX. Confession ought to be made before the Lord God the Saviour, and then prayer should be offered for help and the power to resist evils. 538-560

X. Real repentance is easy for those who have repented a number of times, but highly distasteful to those who have not. 561-563

XI. A person who has never repented, or looked into himself and examined himself, ends up not knowing what is the evil which damns him and what the good which saves him. 564-566


I. Unless a person is born again and as it were created anew, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 572-575

II. A new birth or creation can only be brought about by the Lord through charity and faith as the two means with the person's co-operation. 576-578

III. Since all have been redeemed, everyone can be regenerated, in each case depending on the person's state. 579-582

IV. The process of regeneration is on the model of a person's conception, gestation in the womb, birth and upbringing. 583-586

- Some facts about the male and female sexes in the vegetable kingdom. 585

V. The first stage of re-birth is called reformation, a process affecting the understanding; the second stage is called regeneration, a process affecting the will and thus the understanding. 587-590

VI. The internal man must be reformed first, and the external by means of the internal; that is how a person is regenerated. 591-595

VII. When this happens, a struggle ensues between the internal and the external man, and the victor then controls the other. 596-600

VIII. When a person is regenerated, he acquires a new will and a new under-standing. 601-606

IX. A person who is regenerated is in touch with the angels of heaven, one who is not with the spirits of hell. 607-610

X. In so far as a person is regenerated, so far are his sins removed; this removal is the forgiveness of sins. 611-614

XI. Regeneration is impossible without free will in spiritual matters. 615-617

XII. Regeneration is impossible without truths through which faith may be formed, and with which charity may link itself. 618-620


I. The faith of the present-day church, which is held to be the sole requirement for justification, is one with imputation. 626-627

II. Imputation as part of present-day faith is a double concept. There is imputation of Christ's merit and imputation of salvation as a result. 628-631

III. The idea of faith imputing the merit and righteousness of Christ the Redeemer sprang first from the decrees of the Council of Nicaea concerning three Divine Persons from eternity; and this faith has been accepted by the whole Christian world from that time to the present. 632-635

IV. Faith which imputes Christ's merit was unknown to the earlier, Apostolic church, and is nowhere to be understood in the Word. 636-639

V. It is impossible for Christ's merit and righteousness to be imputed. 640-642

VI. There is imputation but it is of good and evil. 643-646

VII. The faith and concept of imputation in the new church cannot by any means be combined with the faith and concept of imputation current in the former church. If they are combined, there is such a clash and conflict that a person loses all trace of anything to do with the church. 647-649

VIII. The Lord imputes good to everyone and hell imputes evil to everyone. 650-653

IX. It is what faith combines with which is the deciding factor. If true faith combines with good, that is a decision for everlasting life; but if faith combines with evil, that is a decision for everlasting death. 654-657

X. One's thoughts are not imputed to anyone, only one's will. 658-660


I. Without knowledge of the spiritual sense of the Word no one can know what is involved in and effected by the two sacraments, baptism and the Holy Supper. 667-669

II. The washing called baptism means spiritual washing, which is purification from evils and falsities, and so regeneration. 670-673

III. Baptism was instituted to take the place of circumcision, because the circumcision of the foreskin was a representation of the circumcision of the heart. The purpose of baptism was so that the internal church should take the place of the external, which in every detail prefigured the internal church. 674-676

IV. The first purpose of baptism is to be introduced to the Christian church, and at the same time brought into the company of Christians in the spiritual world. 677-680

V. The second purpose of baptism is so that a Christian may get to know and acknowledge the Lord Jesus Christ, the Redeemer and Saviour, and follow Him. 681-683

VI. The third purpose of baptism, which is its end in view, is a person's regeneration. 684-687

VII. By John's baptism the way was prepared for Jehovah God to come down into the world and carry out redemption. 688-691


I. No one who does not know about the way natural things correspond with spiritual ones can know the benefits conferred by the Holy Supper. 698-701

II. A knowledge of correspondences allows us to know what is meant by the Lord's flesh and blood, much the same as by bread and wine. This is that the Lord's flesh and the bread mean the Divine good of His love and also all the good of charity; and the Lord's blood and the wine mean the Divine truth of His wisdom and also all the truth of faith. Eating means making one's own. 702-710

- Demonstration from the Word of the meaning of flesh. 704-705

- Demonstration from the Word of the meaning of blood. 706

- Demonstration from the Word of the meaning of bread. 707

- Demonstration from the Word of the meaning of wine. 708

III. By understanding this it is possible to grasp the fact that the Holy Supper contains everything to do with the church and heaven, both at the universal and at the particular level. 711-715

IV. The Lord is wholly present in the Holy Supper, and so is the whole of redemption. 716-718

V. The Lord is present and opens heaven to those who worthily approach the Holy Supper. He is also present with those who approach it unworthily, but He does not open heaven to them. Consequently just as baptism is being introduced to the church, so the Holy Supper is being introduced to heaven. 719-721

VI. The people who worthily approach the Holy Supper are those who have faith in the Lord and charity towards the neighbour, so those who have been regenerated. 722-724

VII. Those who worthily approach the Holy Supper are in the Lord and the Lord is in them. Thus it is through the Holy Supper that they are linked with the Lord. 725-727

VIII. The Holy Supper for those who approach it worthily is a kind of guarantee and seal put on their adoption as sons of God. 728-730


I. The ending of the age is the final period or end of the church. 753-756

II. The present time is the final period of the Christian church foretold and described by the Lord in the Gospels and Revelation 757-759

III. This final period of the Christian church is absolute night, in which previous churches ended 760-763

IV. This night is followed by morning, and morning is the Lord's coming. 764-767

V. The Lord's coming does not mean His coming to destroy the sky we see and the earth where we live, and to create a new heaven and a new earth, as many people up to now have imagined through not understanding the spiritual sense of the Word. 768-771

VI. This, which is the Lord's second coming, is taking place in order that the wicked should be separated from the good, and those should be saved who believe in Him and have done so; and so that a new heaven of angels and a new church on earth should be formed from them. Without this no flesh could be saved (Matthew 24:22). 772-775

VII. This, the Lord's second coming, is not in person, but in the word, which is from Him and which He is. 776-778

VIII. This, the Lord's second coming, is taking place by means of a man, to whom He has shown Himself in person, and whom He has filled with His spirit, so that he may teach the doctrines of the new church which come from the Lord through the Word. 779-780

IX. This is the meaning of the new heaven and the New Jerusalem in Revelation, chapter 21. 781-785

X. This new church is the crown of all the churches which have up to now existed upon earth. 786-791


I. The nature of the spiritual world. 792-795

II. Luther in the spiritual world. 796

III. Melanchthon in the spiritual world. 797

IV. Calvin in the spiritual world. 798-799

V. The Dutch in the spiritual world. 800-805

VI. The British in the spiritual world. 806-812

VII. The Germans in the spiritual world. 813-816

VIII. The Roman Catholics in the spiritual world. 817-821

IX. The saints of the Roman Catholics in the spiritual world. 822-827

X. The Mohammedans in the spiritual world. 828-834

XI. The Africans in the spiritual world; also something about other nations. 835-840

XII. The Jews in the spiritual world. 841-845

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