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 34, 48

Show references from Swedenborg's unpublished works



From Swedenborg's Works

Apocalypse Explained #229

Apocalypse Explained (Tansley translation)

Go to section / 1232  

← Previous    Next →

229. The beginning of the creation of God. That this signifies faith from Him, which is the primary of the church as to appearance, is evident from the signification of beginning, as being what is primary; and from the signification of the creation of God, as being the church, of which we shall speak presently. The reason why faith is meant by the beginning of the creation of God is, that this is the subject treated of in what is written to the angel of this church; but that faith is the beginning of the creation of God, that is, the primary thing of the church as to appearance, shall now be explained. By faith is here meant faith from the Lord; for faith which is not from the Lord is not the faith of the church, and faith from the Lord is the faith of charity. This faith is the first principle of the church as to appearance, because it appears first to the man of the church; nevertheless, charity itself is actually the first principle of the church, because it constitutes the church with man.

(References: Revelation 3:14)


[2] There are two things that constitute the church, namely, charity and faith, charity pertains to affection, and faith to thought therefrom. The very essence of thought is affection; for without affection no one can think, the all of the life, which is in thought, being from affection. It is therefore evident, that the first principle of the church is the affection which is of charity, or love. But the reason why faith is called the first principle of the church is, that it is the first to appear; for what a man believes, that he thinks, and sees in thought; whereas that with which man is spiritually affected, he does not think, nor, therefore, does he see it in thought, but he perceives it in a certain sense which has no reference to sight, but to another sensitive, which is called that of delight. And because this delight is spiritual, and above the feeling of natural delight, a man does not perceive it, until he becomes spiritual, that is, when he is regenerated by the Lord. This is why the things of faith, thus those of sight, are believed to be the primary things of the church, although they are so only in appearance. This therefore is called the beginning of the creation of God, because the Word in the letter is according to appearance; for the appearance in the letter is for the simple; but spiritual men, like the angels, are raised above appearances, and perceive the Word as it is in its internal sense, consequently they perceive that charity is the first principle of the church, and that faith is therefrom; for, as was said above, faith which is not from charity, and which does not pertain to charity, is not faith (concerning this, see what is said in the small work, The Last Judgment, n. 33-39).

(References: The Last Judgment 33-39)


[3] What is the first principle of the church, whether faith or charity, has been a matter of controversy, even from ancient times; and those who were unacquainted with the nature of charity have said that faith is the first principle; but those who were acquainted with the nature of charity have affirmed that charity is the first, and that faith is charity as to appearance, because the affection of charity, which appears to the sight in thought, is faith; for the delight of affection, when it passes from the will into the thought, forms itself, and in various forms renders itself visible. This was unknown to the simple; therefore they took that to be the first principle of the church which appeared before the sight of their thought; and because the Word in the letter is written according to appearances, therefore this is there called the first, the beginning, and the first-born. For this reason, Peter, by whom was represented the faith of the church, is said to be the first of the apostles; whereas John was the first, because John represented the good of charity. That John, and not Peter, was the first of the apostles, is evident from the fact that John leaned on the breast of the Lord, and that he, and not Peter, followed the Lord (John xxi. 20-22). (That by the twelve disciples of the Lord were represented all the truths and goods of the church, may be seen, Arcana Coelestia, n. 2129, 3354, 3488, 3858, 6397; that by Peter was represented faith, n. 4738, 6000, 6073, 6344, 10,087, 10,580; and that by John was represented the good of charity, n. 3934, 10,087.)

(References: Arcana Coelestia 2129, 3354, 3488, Arcana Coelestia 3858, Arcana Coelestia 3934, Arcana Coelestia 4738, Arcana Coelestia 6000, 6073, Arcana Coelestia 6344, 6397, Arcana Coelestia 10087, Arcana Coelestia 10580; John 21:20-22)


[4] For the same reason also, Reuben (because he was the first-born of Jacob) represented faith, and it was believed that the tribe which had its name from him was the first; but that tribe was not the first, but the tribe of Levi, because Levi represented the good of charity; therefore also this tribe was appointed to the priesthood, and the priesthood is the first thing of the church. (That by the twelve sons of Jacob, or the twelve tribes named from them, were represented all the truths and goods of the church, may be seen, in Arcana Coelestia, n. 3858, 3926, 4060, 6335, 7836, 7891, 7996; that by Reuben was represented faith, n. 3861, 3866, 4605, 4731, 4734, 4761, 6342-6345; and that by Levi was represented the good of charity, n. 3875, 4497, 4502, 4503.) It is also for the same reason, that, in the first chapter of Genesis, which, in the sense of the letter, treats of the creation of heaven and earth, but, in the internal sense, of the new creation, or regeneration, of the man of the church at that time, it is there said that light was first made, and afterwards the sun and the moon, as may be seen, verses 3-5, and 14-19 in that chapter, although the sun is first, and light from it. The reason why light was said to be the first of creation was, that by light is signified the truth of faith, and by the sun and moon the good of love and charity. (That by the creation of heaven and earth, in the first chapter of Genesis, in the spiritual sense, is meant and described the new creation of the man of the celestial church, or his regeneration, may be seen in the explanation of that chapter in Arcana Coelestia, and also, n. 8891, 9942, 10,545. That light signifies truth from good, thus also the truth of faith, may be seen in the work, Heaven and Hell, n. 126-140; and that the sun signifies the good of love, and the moon the good of charity, both from the Lord, may be seen in the same work, n. 116-125, 146.) From these considerations it is evident that the beginning of the creation of God signifies faith from the Lord, which is the first principle of the church as to appearance.

(References: Arcana Coelestia 3858, Arcana Coelestia 3861, 3866, 3875, 3926, Arcana Coelestia 4060, 4497, 4502-4503, 4605, 4731, 4734, Arcana Coelestia 4761, Arcana Coelestia 6335, 6342, Arcana Coelestia 7836, 7891, 7996, 8891, 9942, Arcana Coelestia 10545, Genesis 1:14-19, 1:3-5; Heaven and Hell 116-125, 126-140, 146; Revelation 3:14, Revelation 3:3-5, 3:14-19)

Go to section / 1232  

← Previous    Next →


Translate: