The Bible

Genesis 1

English: King James Version

Study the Inner Meaning

Genesis 2 →

1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

2 And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

3 And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.

4 And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.

5 And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.

6 And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.

7 And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so.

8 And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day.

9 And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so.

10 And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good.

11 And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so.

12 And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good.

13 And the evening and the morning were the third day.

14 And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years:

15 And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so.

16 And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.

17 And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth,

18 And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good.

19 And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.

20 And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven.

21 And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good.

22 And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth.

23 And the evening and the morning were the fifth day.

24 And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so.

25 And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good.

26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

28 And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.

29 And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.

30 And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.

31 And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

Genesis 2 →

Study the Inner Meaning

Main explanation(s) from Swedenborg's works:

Arcana Coelestia 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22 ...

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 402

Commentary on this chapter:

Stories:

Other references by Swedenborg to this chapter:

Arcana Coelestia 4, 6, 221, 246, 300, 435, 476 ...

Apocalypse Revealed 200, 414

Conjugial Love 132, 156

Divine Love and Wisdom 11, 18, 287, 358

Divine Providence 123, 328

Sacred Scripture 14, 103

Heaven and Hell 137

The Last Judgment 20

True Christian Religion 20, 34, 46, 48, 364, 490

Show references from Swedenborg's unpublished works



Commentary

What the Bible says about... Marriage and Spirituality

A bride, dressed for her wedding, looks out a window.

People who are truly in love know that marriage is one of the greatest blessings the Lord has given people. But there's a lot of confusion and doubt about marriage these days. Let's take a look at what the Bible says about it, beginning at the very beginning. The very fact that the Lord has created us male and female (Genesis 1:27) seems to indicate that marriage is the intended condition for people.

In the Adam and Eve story, the Lord says, "It is not good that the man should be alone." (Genesis 2:18). Therefore, He creates Eve. It's a very ancient story that depicts marriage as one of God's blessings for humanity, part of his plan for people.

God's blessing on the first marriage makes this even more clear: "And God blessed them and said to them, 'Be fruitful and multiply.'" (Genesis 1:28)

Not only does marriage have the Lord's blessing - it is also phrased as a commandment in this passage from the prophet Jeremiah: "Thus says the Lord of Hosts, the God of Israel.... Take wives and beget sons and daughters, and take wives for your sons and give your daughters to husbands, so that they may bear sons and daughters--that you may be increased there, and not diminished.'" (Jeremiah 29:6)

King Solomon said, "He who finds a wife finds a good thing, and obtains favor from the Lord." (Proverbs 18:22)

In the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus has a telling response to the Pharisees who are quizzing him about divorce:

Jesus answered, "Have you not read that from the beginning the Creator 'made them male and female', and said, 'For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate'." (Matthew 19:4-6)

There are also frequent references to a marriage between the Lord and His Church, in the text of the Bible. These provide perhaps the clearest evidence that marriage is a beautiful and holy ideal:

"As the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you." (Isaiah 62:5)

"Your Maker is your husband: The Lord of Hosts is His name." (Isaiah 54:5)

"'Turn, O backsliding children,' says the Lord, 'for I am married to you.'" (Jeremiah 3:14)

"Let us be glad and rejoice, and give glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready." (Revelation 19:7).

See also Jeremiah 31:32; Isaiah 49:18, 61:10; Jeremiah 2:32; Hosea 2:2; Ezekiel 16; Matthew 22:2-9; 25:1-10; Luke 5:34; Revelation 21:2, 9; 22:17, etc.

From all this, it seems pretty clear that there's strong support in the Bible for marriage.

That said, there are also some passages that have led people in other directions. In some of Paul's letters, there are some things which can be taken to say that marriage is less chaste than celibacy. In another place, Jesus says that in heaven, they neither marry nor are given in marriage. What did he mean by that? We will dig into these issues in separate topics, or in an extension to this one... but, overall, the Bible's pretty clear that marriage is part of the Lord's design for us, and that our physical, earthly marriages represent a spiritual marriage, too.


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