904. Verse 14. And I saw, signifies prediction respecting the separation of the good from the evil. This is evident from the fact that "seeing" involves the things that are seen, and these are what now follow; and as these involve in the spiritual sense the first or general separation of the good from the evil, so here, "I saw" signifies prediction respecting this separation. It is to be known that in what follows in this chapter separation in general is predicted, and in the following chapters separation in particular, or specifically, which is described by "the seven angels having the seven vials of the wrath of God." It is according to Divine order that the separation of the good from the evil should be thus described, which order is that what is general should come before the setting forth of the particular and the most particular or the specific things. It is according to Divine order for what is general to precede, in order that particulars may be introduced into them and rightly arranged, and made homogeneous and joined together in close connection.
(On this subject see what is set forth in the Arcana Coelestia, namely, that general things precede, into which particulars are introduced, and most particular things into these, n. 920, 4325, 4329, 4345, 5208, 6089.
That with the man who is being regenerated general things precede, and particular and most particular things follow in order, n. 3057, 4345, 4383, 6089.
That afterwards there is a subordination of all things under the generals in man, and thus connection, n. Arcana Coelestia 5339. That generals may be filled with innumerable things, n. 7131.
That such as a man is in general, such he is in every particular thing, n. 917, 1040, 1316.
That what reigns generally is in all things and in each thing, n. 6159, 7648, 8067, 8853-8857, 8865. All this has been presented to make known why general and generic things are here first stated, and afterwards the particular and most particular things.)
Thanks to the Swedenborg Foundation for their permission to use this translation.