236. Verse 17. Because thou sayest I am rich, and have gotten riches and have need of nothing, signifies their faith that they believe themselves to be in truths more than others. This is evident from the signification of "saying," as involving what is believed by them; and as those who are in faith alone are here treated of, "saying" signifies their faith. Moreover, "to say," in the spiritual sense, signifies to think, because what is said goes forth from the thought, and thought is spiritual because it pertains to the spirit of man, while expression and speech from thought are natural because they pertain to the body. For this reason, "saying" has several significations in the Word. This is evident also from the signification of "being rich," as being to possess the knowledges of truth and good, and to be intelligent and wise thereby (of which presently); also from the signification of "have gotten riches and have need of nothing," as being to know all things so that nothing is lacking.
 That those who are in the doctrine of faith alone and justification by faith are such, or believe themselves to be so, is not known to those who are not in that faith, although they are among them; but that still they are so it has been given me to know by much experience. I have talked with many who in the world believed themselves to be more intelligent and wise than others, from their knowing many things about faith alone and justification by faith, and such things as the simple minded are ignorant of; and these they called interior things and mysteries of doctrine, and believed they knew and understood everything, with nothing lacking. Among them were many who had written about faith alone and justification by faith. But it was shown them that they know nothing of truth, and that those who have lived a life of faith, which is charity, and have not understood justification by faith alone, are more intelligent and wise than they. It was also shown that the things they knew are not truths but falsities, and that knowing and thinking falsities is not being intelligent and wise, for intelligence is of truth, and wisdom is of the life therefrom. And the reason of this was disclosed, namely that they were in no spiritual affection of truth, but only in a natural affection of knowing the things taught by their leaders, by some for the sake of their function, by others for the fame of erudition; and that those who are in natural and not in spiritual affection believe that when they know these things they know everything. This is still more so with those who have confirmed these things by the sense of the letter of the Word, and have labored to connect these with other falsities by means of the fallacies of reason.
 I will also say something from experience about these things. Some spirits who were believed by others when they lived as men in the world to be men of learning, were examined to ascertain whether they knew what spiritual faith is. They said that they knew. They were therefore sent to those who were in that faith; and when they were given communication with these they perceived that they had no faith, and did not know what faith is. They were then asked what they now believe about faith alone, on which the whole doctrine of their church is founded, but they were ashamed and dumb-founded. There were also many of the learned of the church who were asked about regeneration, whether they knew what it is; they replied that they knew that it is baptism, since the Lord says, that "unless a man is born of water and spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God;" but when it was shown them that baptism is not regeneration, but that "water and spirit" mean truths and a life according to them, and that no one can enter heaven unless he is regenerated through these, they went away confessing their ignorance. Again, when they were asked about angels, about heaven and hell, about the life of man after death, and many other matters, they knew nothing, and these things were all like thick darkness in their minds. They therefore confessed that they had believed that they knew all things, but they now know that they know scarcely anything. Knowing something means, in the spiritual world, knowing something of truth; but knowing falsities is not knowing, because it is not understanding and being wise. They were afterwards told that this is meant by the Lord's words, "Because thou sayest I am rich, and have gotten riches, and knowest not that thou art wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked."
 The "rich" in the Word signify those who are in truths, because spiritual riches are nothing else; and therefore "riches" in the Word signify the knowledges of truth and good, and "the rich" those who are in intelligence thereby; as can be seen from the following passages. In Ezekiel:
In thy wisdom and in thine intelligence thou hast made to thee wealth, gold and silver in thy treasures; by the abundance of thy wisdom thou hast multiplied to thee wealth (Ezekiel 28:4-5).
These things were said to the prince of Tyre, by whom in the spiritual sense those who are in the knowledges of truth are meant; "wealth" means those knowledges themselves in general; "gold in treasures" mean the knowledges of good, and "silver in treasures" the knowledges of truth. That these signify knowledges is very clear, for it is said, "In thy wisdom and in thine intelligence thou hast made to thee wealth, and by the abundance of thy wisdom thou hast multiplied to thee wealth." ("The prince of Tyre" means those who are in the knowledges of truth, because "prince" signifies primary truths, Arcana Coelestia 1482, 2089, 5044; and "Tyre" the knowledges of truth, n. 1201; "treasures" signify the possessions of knowledges, n. 1694, 4508, 10227; "gold" signifies good, and "silver" truth, n. 1551, 1552, 2954, 5658.)
Arcana Coelestia 1551-1552)
 In Zechariah:
Tyre heapeth up silver as dust, and gold as the mire of the streets; behold the Lord will impoverish her, and smite her wealth in the sea (Zechariah 9:3-4).
Here also "Tyre" stands for those who acquire for themselves knowledges, which are "silver," "gold," and "wealth." In David:
The daughter of Tyre shall bring to thee a gift, the king's daughter; the rich of the people shall entreat thy faces (Psalms 45:12-13).
Here is described the church in respect to the affection of truth, which is meant by "the king's daughter," for "daughter" means the church in respect to affection (Arcana Coelestia 3262, 3963, 6729, 9059; and "king" means truth, n. 1672, 2015, 2069, 3670, 4575, 4581, 4966, 6148). For this reason it is said that "the daughter of Tyre shall bring a gift," and that "the rich of the people shall entreat thy faces;" "the rich of the people" are those who abound in truths.
 In Hosea:
Ephraim said, Surely I am become rich, I have found me wealth, all my labors shall not find iniquity to me which is sin; but I will yet speak to the prophets and I will multiply vision (Hosea 12:8, 10).
"I am become rich, and I have found me wealth," does not mean being enriched by worldly but by heavenly riches and wealth, which are the knowledges of truth and good; for "Ephraim" means the intellectual of those who are of the church, which is illustrated when the Word is read (Arcana Coelestia 5354, 6222, 6238, 6267); therefore it is said, "I will yet speak to the prophets, and I will multiply vision;" "prophets" and likewise "visions" signifying the truths of doctrine.
 In Jeremiah:
Jehovah giving to every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings; as the partridge gathereth but bringeth not forth, he maketh riches but not with judgment; in the midst of his days he shall leave them, in the end of days he shall become foolish (Jeremiah 17:10-11).
This treats of those who acquire for themselves knowledges with no other purpose than merely to know, when, yet knowledges ought to be subservient to the life. This is what is meant by "gathering as the partridge and not bringing forth," and by "making riches but not with judgment;" and by "becoming foolish in the end of days." And as the knowledges of truth and good ought to be subservient to the life, for by these the life will be perfected, it is said that "Jehovah gives to everyone according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings."
 In Luke:
Whosoever he be of you that renounceth not all his possessions, he cannot be My disciple (Luke 14:33).
He who does not know that "possessions" mean in the Word spiritual riches and wealth, which are knowledges from the Word, can know no otherwise than that he ought to deprive himself of all wealth in order to be saved; where yet that is not the meaning of these words. "Possessions" here mean all things that are from self-intelligence, for no one can be wise from himself, but only from the Lord; "to renounce all possessions" is to attribute nothing of intelligence and wisdom to oneself, and he who does not do this cannot be instructed by the Lord, that is, cannot be His disciple.
 They who do not know that "the rich" mean those who possess the knowledges of truth and good, thus who have the Word, and that "the poor" mean those who do not possess knowledges, but yet long for them, can know no otherwise than that "the rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen," and "the poor man who was laid at his gate" (Luke 16:20), mean the rich and the poor in the common acceptation of these words, when yet "the rich man" there means the Jewish nation, which had the Word, in which are all the knowledges of truth and good; the "purple" with which he was clothed means genuine good (Arcana Coelestia 9467); "fine linen" genuine truth (Arcana Coelestia 5319, 9469, 9596, 9744); and "the poor man who was laid at his gate" means the Gentiles that were outside of the church, and did not have the Word, and yet longed for the truths and goods of heaven and the church. From this it is clear that "the rich" mean those who have the Word, and thus the knowledges of truth and good, since these are in the Word.
 So also in the prophecy to Elizabeth, in Luke:
God hath filled the hungry with good things, and the rich He hath sent empty away (Luke 1:53).
"The hungry" are those who long for knowledges; such were the Gentiles that received the Lord and doctrine from Him; but "the rich" are those who have knowledges because they have the Word; such were the Jews, and yet they did not wish to know truths from the Word, consequently they did not receive the Lord and doctrine from Him. These are "the rich" who were sent empty away; but the others are "the hungry" who were filled with good things.
Hosea 12:8-10; Psalms 45:12)