The Bible

 

Genesis 1

King James Version         

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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.

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   Study the Inner Meaning
From Swedenborg's Works

Main explanations:

Arcana Coelestia 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, ...

Apocalypse Explained 257

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 402


Other references to this chapter:

Arcana Coelestia 246, 300, 476, 478, 480, 670, 709, ...

Apocalypse Revealed 200, 414

Conjugial Love 132, 156

Divine Love and Wisdom 11, 18, 287, 358

Divine Providence 123, 328

The Doctrine of the New Jerusalem Regarding the Sacred Scripture 14, 103

Heaven and Hell 137

The Last Judgement 20

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


References from Swedenborg's drafts, indexes & diaries:

Apocalypse Explained 229, 294, 401, 513, 526, 527, 555, ...

Canons of the New Church 45

Charity 91

Coronis (An Appendix to True Christian Religion) 23, 25, 28

De Verbo (The Word) 14

Spiritual Experiences 1973, 1974, 5605, 6110

Marriage 20, 34, 46, 48, 71

Related New Christian Commentary

  Stories and their meanings:



Hop to Similar Bible Verses

Genesis 2:3, 7, 16, 19, 5:1, 2, 6:1, 21, 8:17, 9:1, 2, 3, 6, 11:7

Exodus 20:11

Deuteronomy 4:19, 32:4

2 Kings 19:15

2 Chronicles 2:11

Nehemiah 9:6

Job 12:7, 9, 26:8, 38:8

Psalms 8:4, 7, 19:2, 24:2, 33:6, 7, 9, 74:16, 95:5, 104:6, 14, 19, 25, 115:15, 16, 121:2, 136:5, 7, 9, 148:4, 7

Proverbs 8:29

Ecclesiastes 3:11

Isaiah 40:26, 45:7, 61:11

Jeremiah 4:23, 10:12, 31:35

Jonah 1:9

Zechariah 12:1

Matthew 19:4

Mark 4:28, 10:6

Luke 3:38

Acts of the Apostles 4:24, 17:29

1 Corinthians 11:7, 15:38

2 Corinthians 4:6, 6:14

Colossians 3:10

1 Timothy 4:4

Hebrews 6:8, 11:3

James 3:9

2 Peter 5, 6

Revelation 4:11

Bible Word Meanings

beginning
In the Word, "beginning" doesn't just mean the beginning of something in time. In the inner sense, it means the initial phase of a spiritual...

God
When the Bible speaks of "Jehovah," it is representing love itself, the inmost love that is the essence of the Lord. That divine love is...

created
The creation of heaven and earth in the first chapter of Genesis means the new creation of the celestial church called 'Man'.

heaven
"Air" in the Bible represents thought, but in a very general way – more like our capacity to perceive ideas and the way we tend...

earth
Land' in the Word, denotes the church, for the things which signify the church also signify the things relating to the church, for these constitute...

form
A person who has yet to be regenerated is called 'a void and an empty earth', and also 'ground where no good or truth has...

darkness
"Darkness" is a state without light. "Light" is truth from the Lord, so "darkness" represents a state where truth is lacking. Here's a cogent passage...

Face of the deep
The face of the deep (Gen. 1:2) signifies the lust of the unregenerate man, and the falsities thence originating.

face
“The eyes are the windows of the soul.” That’s a sentiment with roots somewhere in murky antiquity, but one that has become hopelessly cliché because...

Spirit of God
'The spirit of God,' as in Genesis 1:2, signifies the divine mercy of the Lord. 'The spirit of God' is His emanation. 'The spirit of...

Face of the waters
The face of the water (Gen. 1:2) signifies the knowledges of good and truth.

said
As with many common verbs, the meaning of “to say” in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Who is speaking? Who is hearing? What...

light
In the Word, “light” in the highest sense represents Divine Truth: knowledge, ideas, understanding that come to us from the Lord. In lesser degrees...

saw
The symbolic meaning of "seeing" is "understanding," which is obvious enough that it has become part of common language (think about it; you might see...

good
It seems rather circular to say that “good” in the Bible represents good, but in a general sense it’s true! The case is this: The...

called
'To proclaim' signifies exploration from influx of the Lord.

day
The expression 'even to this day' or 'today' sometimes appears in the Word, as in Genesis 19:37-38, 22:14, 26:33, 32:32, 35:20, and 47:26. In a...

night
The sun in the Bible represents the Lord, with its heat representing His love and its light representing His wisdom. “Daytime,” then, represents a state...

evening
Since the light and warmth of the sun represent the Lord’s wisdom and love, it makes sense that evening, a time when the light and...

morning
Morning comes with the rising of the sun, and the sun – which gives life to the earth with its warmth and light – represents...

Firmament
The firmament, as in Genesis 1, signifies the internal man. The firmament of heaven is mutual love.

midst
The "midst" of something in the Bible represents the thing that is most central and most important to the spiritual state being described, the motivation...

under
Generally speaking things that are seen as lower physically in the Bible represent things that are lower or more external spiritually. In some cases this...

one
A company might have executives setting policy and strategy, engineers designing products, line workers building them, managers handling personnel and others handling various functions. They...

place
'A room' or 'place' denotes state.

land
Generally in the Bible a "country" means a political subdivision ruled by a king, or sometimes a tribe with a territory ruled by a king...

seas
Water generally represents what Swedenborg calls “natural truth,” or true concepts about day-to-day matters and physical things. Since all water ultimately flows into the seas,...

grass
Every herb in the Word signifies some species of scientifics. 'Herb bearing seed,' as mentioned in Genesis 1:29, signifies every truth which regards use. 'Green...

herb
Every herb in the Word signifies some species of scientifics. 'Herb bearing seed,' as mentioned in Genesis 1:29, signifies every truth which regards use. 'Green...

seed
'A seed' signifies love, and everyone who has love, as in Genesis 12:7. 8:15, 16. 'A seed' signifies faith grounded in charity. 'A seed' signifies...

fruit
We tend to think of "fruit" in two ways in natural language. One is as food that grows on trees and vines, sweet and delicious,...

tree
'Trees,' in general, signify the perceptions when discussing the celestial self, but when related to the spiritual church, they signify knowledges. A person in the...

Third day
'The third day' signifies the end of a state of preparation for reception, and so an end of purification, as in Exodus 19:16. 'The third...

third
'Three' denotes fullness, and 'a third,' not full.

lights
'The two luminaries' denote love and faith in the internal self.

signs
'A token,' as in Genesis 9:12, 13, 17, signifies causing it to be.

days
"Day" describes a state in which we are turned toward the Lord, and are receiving light (which is truth) and heat (which is a desire...

two
The number "two" has two different meanings in the Bible. In most cases "two" indicates a joining together or unification. This is easy to see...

Great lights
Great lights, as in luminaries, signify love and faith, and are called in Genesis 1:14-17, the sun, moon, and stars.

great
The word "great" is used in the Bible to represent a state with a strong degree of love and affection, of the desire for good;...

greater
The word "great" is used in the Bible to represent a state with a strong degree of love and affection, of the desire for good;...

give
Like other common verbs, the meaning of "give" in the Bible is affected by context: who is giving what to whom? In general, though, giving...

fourth
The number "four" in the Bible represents things being linked together or joined. This is partly because four is two times two, and two represents...

life
'Lives' is used in the plural, because of the will and understanding, and because these two lives make one.

fowl
Fowl signify spiritual truth; a bird, natural truth; and a winged thing, sensual truth. Fowl signify intellectual things. Fowl signify thoughts, and all that creeps...

fly
To fly, when spoken of the Lord, signifies to foresee and to provide. To fly, when predicated of the Lord, also signifies omnipresence. To fly...

open
To open,' as in Revelation 9, signifies communication and conjunction.

whales
'A whale,' as in Jeremiah 51:34, signifies people who possess the universal aspects of the knowledges of faith, as known, and apply them to evil...

living
'Lives' is used in the plural, because of the will and understanding, and because these two lives make one.

winged
'Wings' signify spiritual truths. 'Wings,' when related to the Lord, signify the divine spiritual. In the opposite sense, 'wings' relate to falsities and rationalizations from...

blessed
The Lord is perfect love expressed as perfect wisdom. He created us so that He could love us, could give us love and wisdom of...

fruitful
To be fruitful is predicated of goodnesses, and to be multiplied, of truths.

multiply
'Spreading themselves on the earth,' as in Genesis 8:17, signifies the internal self operating on the external.

fill
There are two ways something can be filled: It can be filled with something bad against the wishes of its owner, or it can be...

beast
"Beasts" represent the affection for doing good things, a true desire to do them from the heart. In the negative sense, "beasts" stand for the...

us
Angels do give us guidance, but they are mere helpers; the Lord alone governs us, through angels and spirits. Since angels have their assisting role,...

image
'An image' signifies falsities from self-derived intelligence.

sea
'The sea and the waves roaring' means heresy and controversies in the church and individual.

air
"Air" in the Bible represents thought, but in a very general way – more like our capacity to perceive ideas and the way we tend...

own
In many cases, the spiritual meaning of "own," both as a verb and as an adjective, is relatively literal. When people are described as the...

male
Because of their understanding of spiritual marriage, the people of the Most Ancient church perceived 'male and female' as two faculties in the spiritual self:...

male and female
Because of their understanding of spiritual marriage, the people of the Most Ancient church perceived 'male and female' as two faculties in the spiritual self:...

female
Female signifies good.

given
Like other common verbs, the meaning of "give" in the Bible is affected by context: who is giving what to whom? In general, though, giving...

sixth
Like most numbers in the Bible, "six" can have various meanings depending on context, but has a couple that are primary. When used in relation...

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Resources for parents and teachers

The items listed here are provided courtesy of our friends at the General Church of the New Jerusalem. You can search/browse their whole library at the New Church Vineyard website.


 Animals and Plants in Heaven
Worship Talk | Ages 7 - 14

 Celebrating the Seven Days of Creation
Offers a wide array of ideas for play time, art projects, field trips, and more.
Activity | Ages up to 10

 Correspondences of Light
Illustrations of three stories in the Word that talk about light. (Quotations are the King James translation.)
Coloring Page | Ages 7 - 14

 Creation Chain
Make a paper chain with the names (or pictures) of the people in your family and other things that the Lord has made. Or make a paper chain that illustrates several things in creation that depend on one another. 
Project | Ages 4 - 14

 Creation Diorama
A great family project to build and display in your home.
Project | Ages 4 - 10

 Creation Mobile
Assemble this lovely mobile to remind you of all the Lord's precious gifts to us.
Project | Ages 4 - 14

 Creation Poem with Hand Motions
A lovely poem about creation with hand motions.
Activity | Ages up to 10

 Creation | Seas to Trees Pop-up
Color cut-and-fold pop-up project showing dry land rising out of the water and then growing a tree illustrating Genesis 1:9-13. Sample activity from Creation: reflection of God, Level C, ages 11-14.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 11 - 14

 Creation Sequencing Cards
Children can color and cut out these cards, then practice putting them in order from day 1-7.
Activity | Ages 4 - 10

 Creation Story (circle book project)
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 9 - 12

 Creation | The First Day - Level A
Complete lesson with activity choices: light and darkness game and song, separate light and darkness collage, scripted story discussion, coloring page, and a memory verse. Sample lesson from Creation: reflection of God, Level A, ages 3-6.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 3 - 6

 Creation | The First Day - Level B
Complete lesson with activity choices: light and darkness experiment with accompanying video, let there be light folding paper project, scripted story discussion, coloring page, and a memory verse. Sample lesson from Creation: reflection of God, Level B, ages 7-10.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 Creation | The First Day - Level C
Complete lesson with activity choices: living in the dark--group blindfold games, video and discussion on the bible, creation and a can of peaches, scripted story discussion, and an illustrated quotation card. Sample Lesson from Creation: reflection of God, Level C.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 11 - 14

 Family Worship: The Story of Creation
Ideas for reading and discussing the story of creation in Genesis 1. Includes suggestions for extending the experience such as going for a nature walk.
Religion Lesson | Ages 3 - 15

 God Said What? The Creation Story
Spiritual tasks offer a reflection on a Biblical story and suggest a task for spiritual growth.
Activity | Ages over 18

 Memory Verse: Giving Thanks for Creation
Activity | Ages 4 - 14

 Memory Verse: Life Is Eternal
Activity | Ages 4 - 14

 Overview of Creation Reflection of God Levels A, B, C for ages 3-14
Overview of Creation: reflection of God, Levels A, B, C for ages 3-14.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 3 - 14

 Prophecies of the Advent
Prophecies of Jesus' advent on earth often use the image of new light dawning in darkness to describe the spiritual impact His birth would have on the world.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 11 - 17

 Qualities of the Lord
Look at colored pictures of stories from the Word. Using a word bank, identify the quality of the Lord shown in each picture.
Project | Ages 9 - 14

 Quotes: Giving Thanks for Creation
Teaching Support | Ages over 15

 Stars
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 9 - 12

 Summary of Creation and Thankfulness
This lesson discusses a story from the Word and suggests projects and activities for young children.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 4 - 6

 Sun and the Fruit of Creation
Coloring Page | Ages 7 - 14

 Thankfulness
A Thanksgiving "wreath" to color and display.
Project | Ages 4 - 14

 Thanking the Lord for Creation
How can your words and actions show the Lord that you appreciate His creation?
Activity | Ages over 15

 The Creation
Worship Talk | Ages 7 - 14

 The Creation: A General View
A New Church Bible story explanation for teaching Sunday school. Includes lesson materials for Primary (3-8 years), Junior (9-11 years), Intermediate (12-14 years), Senior (15-17 years) and Adults.
Teaching Support | Ages over 3

 The Creation: The Fifth and Sixth Days
A New Church Bible story explanation for teaching Sunday school. Includes lesson materials for Primary (3-8 years), Junior (9-11 years), Intermediate (12-14 years), Senior (15-17 years) and Adults.
Teaching Support | Ages over 3

 The Creation: The First Four Days
A New Church Bible story explanation for teaching Sunday school. Includes lesson materials for Primary (3-8 years), Junior (9-11 years), Intermediate (12-14 years), Senior (15-17 years) and Adults.
Teaching Support | Ages over 3

 The Days of Creation Collage Book or Mural
Ideas from an art teacher for making a creation book or mural.
Project | Ages 4 - 10

 The Fifth Day of Creation
Lesson outline provides teaching ideas with questions for discussion, projects, and activities.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 The Fifth Day of Creation
A lesson for younger children with discussion ideas and a project.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 4 - 6

 The First Day of Creation
Lesson outline provides teaching ideas with questions for discussion, projects, and activities.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 The First Day of Creation
A lesson for younger children with discussion ideas and a project.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 4 - 6

 The Fourth Day of Creation
Lesson outline provides teaching ideas with questions for discussion, projects, and activities.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 The Fourth Day of Creation
A lesson for younger children with discussion ideas and a project.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 4 - 6

 The Greatest Gift
Article | Ages 15 - 17

 The Meaning of the Tree of Life
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

 The Purpose of Creation
Birth brings a person into the natural world, but God's ultimate purpose is that a person be born again into heavenly life, the life of the spirit.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 11 - 17

 The Second Day of Creation
Lesson outline provides teaching ideas with questions for discussion, projects, and activities.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 The Second Day of Creation
A lesson for younger children with discussion ideas and a project.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 4 - 6

 The Seven Days of Creation
An illustrated story of the seven days of creation.
Story | Ages 3 - 7

 The Sixth Day of Creation
Lesson outline provides teaching ideas with questions for discussion, projects, and activities.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 The Sixth Day of Creation
A lesson for younger children with discussion ideas and a project.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 4 - 6

 The Story of Creation
Family lessons provide a worship talk and a variety of activities for children and teens..
Religion Lesson | Ages 4 - 17

 The Story of Creation: Family Worship Ideas
Detailed notes on the seven days of creation.
Article | Ages over 18

 The Third Day of Creation
Lesson outline provides teaching ideas with questions for discussion, projects, and activities.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 The Third Day of Creation
A lesson for younger children with discussion ideas and a project.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 4 - 6

 The Universe
Coloring Page | Ages 7 - 14

 The Word Made Flesh
Like Genesis, the Gospel of John begins with creation. While Genesis describes the creation of natural light, John describes a second creation into spiritual light.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 11 - 17

 Two Great Lights
Coloring Page | Ages 7 - 14

 Using the Lord’s Creation
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

 Where Did Everything Come From?
Grandpa explains to Annika and Peter where everything came from.
Story | Ages 4 - 6

 Why Are We Here?
Lesson and activities to explore why we were created - what God intends for us.
Religion Lesson | Ages over 15

From Swedenborg's Works

 

Arcana Coelestia #9408

Arcana Coelestia (Elliott translation)      

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9408. 'And it was like the substance of the sky for clearness' means the translucence of the angelic heaven. This is clear from the meaning of 'the sky (or heaven)' as the angelic heaven, dealt with below; and from the meaning of 'clearness' or purity of substance, when said of the sky, as translucence. What the translucence of the angelic heaven is when the Word is the subject must be stated briefly. The angelic heaven is said to be translucent when God's truth shines through; for the whole of heaven is nothing other than a receptacle of God's truth. Each angel is an individual recipient of it, so that all the angels or heaven as a whole is a general recipient. This explains why heaven is called 'God's dwelling-place' and also 'God's throne'. For 'dwelling-place' means God's truth emanating from the Lord and received in the inmost heaven, which in comparison is good, 8269, 8309; and 'throne' means God's truth emanating from the Lord and received in the middle heaven, 5313, 6397, 8625, 9039. Since that which shines through, out of the sense of the letter of the Word, is God's truth as it exists in the heavens, it is the angelic heaven that shines through. For the Word is Divine Truth adjusted to all the heavens, and as a consequence of this it joins the heavens to the world, that is, angels to men, 2143, 7153, 7381, 8920, 9094 (end), 9212 (end), 9216 (end), 9357, 9396. From all this it is evident what the words 'the translucence of the angelic heaven' are used to mean.

[2] The reasons why in the internal sense 'the sky (or heaven)' means the angelic heaven lie with correspondence and also with the appearance. So it is that where the words 'heavens' and 'heavens of heavens' occur in the Word the angelic heavens are meant in the internal sense. For the ancients had no other idea of the visible sky than this, that the inhabitants of heaven lived there and that the stars were their dwelling-places. At the present day too, simple people - especially young children - have the same idea. So it is also that people look upwards to the sky or heaven when they worship God. This action too arises from correspondence; for a sky with stars appears in the next life, but this is not the sky seen by people in the world. Instead it is a sky that takes on an appearance which accords with the spirits and angels' state of intelligence and wisdom. The stars in it are cognitions or knowledge of goodness and truth, and the clouds which are sometimes seen in the sky vary in meaning according to their colours, translucence, and movements, the blue of the sky being truth transparent with good. All this goes to prove that by 'heavens' the angelic heavens are meant. But by the angelic heavens God's truths are meant, because angels are recipients of God's truth emanating from the Lord.

[3] Similar things are meant by 'heavens' in David,

Praise Jehovah, heavens of heavens, and waters that are above the heavens! Psalms 148:4.

In the same author,

Make melody to the Lord who rides above the heaven of the heaven of old. Psalms 68:33.

In the same author,

By the Word of Jehovah were the heavens made, and all the host of them by the spirit 1 of His mouth. Psalms 33:6.

In the same prophet,

The heavens recount His glory, and the firmament declares the works of His hands. Psalms 19:1.

In the Book of Judges,

O Jehovah, when You went forth from Seir, the earth trembled, the heavens also dropped, the clouds indeed dropped water. Judges 5:4.

In Daniel,

The horn of the he-goat grew right on towards the host of the heavens, and cast down to the earth some of the host, and of the stars, and trampled on them. Daniel 8:10.

In Amos,

The Lord Jehovih, who builds His steps in the heavens ... Amos 9:6.

In Malachi,

If there is food in My house I will open the windows of heaven and pour out a blessing for you. Malachi 3:10.

In Isaiah,

Look out from the heavens, and see from the dwelling-place of Your holiness and of Your glory. Isaiah 63:15.

In Moses,

Blessed by Jehovah is the land of Joseph, in regard to the precious things of heaven, to the dew. Deuteronomy 33:13.

In Matthew,

Jesus said, You shall not swear by heaven, for it is God's throne. He who swears by heaven swears by God's throne and by Him who sits on it. Matthew 5:32; 23:22.

(References: Matthew 5:34; Psalms 68:32-33)


[4] In these and very many other places 'heavens' means the angelic heavens. And since the Lord's heaven on earth is the Church, the Church too is meant by 'heaven', as in the following places: In John,

I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the former heaven and the former earth had passed away. Revelation 21:1.

In Isaiah,

Behold, I am creating new heavens and a new earth; therefore the former things will not be remembered or come to mind. 2 Isaiah 65:17.

In the same prophet,

The heavens will vanish away like smoke, and the earth will grow old like a garment. Isaiah 51:6.

In the same prophet,

I clothe heaven with darkness, and I make sackcloth its covering. Isaiah 50:3.

In Ezekiel,

I will cover the heavens, and darken their stars; I will cover the sun with a cloud, and the moon will not give its light. And all the bright lights in heaven I will make dark, and I will put darkness over the land. Ezekiel 32:7-8.

In Matthew,

After the affliction of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Matthew 24:29.

What the meaning is of 'sun', 'moon', 'stars', and 'in the heavens', see 4056-4060.

In Isaiah,

O Jehovah God of Israel, You are God alone over all the kingdoms of the earth. You have made heaven and earth. Isaiah 37:16.

In the same prophet,

[I am] Jehovah who makes all things, who spreads out the heavens Alone, who stretches out the earth by Myself. Isaiah 44:24.

In the same prophet,

Jehovah who created the heavens, who formed the earth, and made it, and prepared it, did not create it an emptiness. Isaiah 45:18.

(References: Arcana Coelestia 4056)


[5] In the internal sense 'heaven and earth' in these and other places means the Church, the internal Church being meant by 'heaven' and the external Church by 'earth', see 1733, 1850, 2117, 2118 (end), 3355 (end), 4535. From all this it is evident that by creation in the earliest chapters of Genesis, where it says, In the beginning God created heaven and earth, Genesis 1:1, And the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them, Genesis 2:1, a new Church is meant. For creation there describes regeneration, which is also called the new creation, as has been shown and may be seen in the explanations of those chapters.

(References: Arcana Coelestia 2117-2118; Exodus 24:10)

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Isaiah 37:16

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16 O LORD of hosts, God of Israel, that dwellest between the cherubims, thou art the God, even thou alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth: thou hast made heaven and earth.

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Explanation of Isaiah 37      

By Rev. John H. Smithson

THE EXPLANATION of Isaiah Chapter 37

(Note: Rev. Smithson's translation of the Isaiah text is appended below the explanation)

1. AND it came to pass, that when the king Hezekiah heard it, he rent his clothes, and covered himself with sackcloth, and went into the house of Jehovah.

2. And he sent Eliakim, who was over the household, and Shebna the scribe, and the elders of the priests, covered with sackcloth, to Isaiah, the son of Amoz, the prophet.

VERSES 1, 2. This was done because by the "king of Assyria" is here signified the rational principle perverted, or the rational principle which perverts the Truths and Goods of the church, and destroys them by falsities; all "the words of Tartan [Rabshakeh], the captain of the king of Assyria, involving such things: and because the church was seen to be in imminent danger of desolation and devastation, therefore, to testify mourning and grief on account thereof, "they rent their clothes, and covered themselves with sackcloth." From this and from other passages, (see 2 Samuel 3:31; Daniel 9:3; Jonah 3:5, 6, 8) it is evident that grief was represented in the Jewish and Israelitish church by "the putting on of sackcloth"; and this because grief of mind and sorrow of heart, which are interior things, were at that time represented by external things, which, on account of their correspondence with spiritual things, were thus significative. That a representative of grief by "the putting on of sackcloth", signified specifically grief on account of the desolation of Truth and of the devastation of Good in the church, and, in particular, repentance and then grief of heart on account of evils might be proved from many passages. Apocalypse Explained 637. See above, Chapter 3:18-25; 15:3; 22:12, the Exposition.

3. And they said unto him, Thus says Hezekiah, This day is a day of distress, and of rebuke, and of contumely: for the sons are come to the birth, and there is not strength to bring forth.

4. Perhaps Jehovah your God will hear the words of Rabshakeh, whom his lord the king of Assyria has sent to blaspheme the living God, and will reprove the words which Jehovah your God has heard: and do you offer up prayer for the remnant which is found.

5. And the servants of king Hezekiah came to Isaiah.

Verse 3. That Truths from the Word may be heard and known, and yet reformation not be effected thereby, is signified by the "sons are come to the birth, and there is not strength to bring forth", to "bring forth" signifies to make Truths fruitful by doing them, whence comes reformation. That this was a grief of heart and of mind, and disgraceful to the church, is signified by "a day of distress, and of rebuke, and of contumely." Apocalypse Explained 721.

6. And Isaiah said unto them, Thus shall you say to your lord, Thus says Jehovah, Be not afraid because of the words which you have heard, with which the servants of the king of Assyria have blasphemed Me.

Verses 6, 7, 37, 38. Because the rational mind is that which both acknowledges and denies the Divine [Being], and when it denies, it seizes upon everything false in the place of Truth, and thus perishes; wherefore this representative existed, namely, that "the king of Assyria, because he blasphemed Jehovah, was slain with the sword by his own sons, in the house of Nisroch his god", as we read in Isaiah 37:37, 38. Apocalypse Explained 131.

Verses 6, 17, 23, 24. Thus says Jehovah, Be not afraid because of the words which you have heard, with which the servants of the king of Assyria have blasphemed Me, etc.

- From these words it is evident that "blasphemy" is predicated of false speaking against God, for by the "king of Assyria", who then was Sennacherib, is signified the rational principle, but perverted, which speaks against Divine Truth, and treats it opprobriously, and perverts it by falsities, which also is to falsify it, The falsities which he spake against Divine Truth are signified by the things mentioned in verses 10, 11, 12, 13, 24, 25; all of which were not only blasphemies against God, but also falsifications of Divine Truth. Apocalypse Explained 778.

The "blasphemies" which they spake were against God, and against the king and Jerusalem, thus against Divine Truth, as is more clearly evident from the internal sense; hence, from grief, they "tore their garments." Arcana Coelestia 4763.

To "blaspheme" and "blasphemy" signifies to deny the Divinity of the Lord, as the Socinians do, and to deny the Word; for they who deny the Divinity of the Lord cannot enter into heaven, for the Divine of the Lord is the all in all of heaven; and he who denies the Word, denies all things of religion. Apocalypse Revealed 571.

7. Behold, I will infuse a spirit into him; and he shall hear a report, and return to his own land; and I will cause him to fall by the sword in his own land.

8. And Rabshakeh returned, and found the king of Assyria fighting against Libnah: for he heard that he had departed from Lachish.

Verse 7. The term "spirit" has various significations in the Word. Since the life of man varies according to his state, therefore by the term "spirit" is also signified the peculiar affection of his life. As:

1) a life of wisdom; as "Bezaleel was filled with the spirit of wisdom"; etc. (Exodus 31:3; see also Deuteronomy 34:9; Dan. 5:12)

2) the excitement of life; as "Jehovah has raised up the spirit of the kings of the Medes." (Jeremiah 51:11) "Behold, I will infuse [or give] a spirit into the king of Assyria, and he shall hear a report", etc. (Isaiah 37:7)

The term "spirit" also signifies

3) liberty of life. (Ezekiel 1:20)

4) Life in fear, pain, and. anger. (Ezekiel 21:7; Psalm 143:4, 7; Daniel 7:15; Genesis 41:8)

5) a life of various evil affections; as "the spirit of whoredoms has caused them to err." (Hosea 4:12; 5:4) "The spirit of jealousy", etc. (Numbers 4:14)

6) infernal life; as "I will cause the unclean spririt to pass out of the land." (Zechariah 13:2)

7) The term "spirit" further signifies the infernal spirits themselves, by whom mankind are troubled, as in Matthew 8:16, and in many other passages. Doctrine of the Lord 48.

9. And he heard concerning Tirhakah, king of Cush, saying, He is come forth to make war with you. And when he heard it, he sent messengers to Hezekiah, saying,

10. Thus shall you speak to Hezekiah, king of Judah, saying, Let not your God, in whom you confide, deceive you, saying, That Jerusalem shall not: be given up into the hand of the king of Assyria.

11. Behold, you have heard what the kings of Assyria have done to all lands, by destroying them utterly; and shalt you be delivered?

Verse 9. King of Ethiopia, or Cush. - See above, Chapter 18:1, 2, the Exposition.

To make war with you. - As to the "wars" mentioned in the Word, see Chapter 7:1, the Exposition.

12. Have the gods of the nations delivered those which my fathers have destroyed? Gozan, and Haran, and Rezeph; and the sons of Eden which were in Telassar?

13. Where is the king of Hamath, and the king of Arpad, and the king of the city of Sepharvaim, of Henah, and of Ivah?

Verses 12, 13. See the Exposition of Isaiah Chapter 36:19.

14. And Hezekiah received the letters from the hand of the messengers, and read them; and he went up to the house of Jehovah: and Hezekiah spread them before the face of Jehovah.

15. And Hezekiah prayed to Jehovah, saying,

Verses 14, 15 And Hezekiah spread the letters before the face of Jehovah, and prayed, etc. - [To "spread the letters full of blasphemy before Jehovah in the temple", was an act which, by correspondence, signifies the acknowledgement and confession, before the Lord, of the evils to which the church is exposed; and it also shows, on the part of the church, full confidence in Him as the only Protector and Saviour against the evils which would destroy it. It may here be observed that this act of "showing the blasphemous letters to Jehovah is the direct opposite to that of "showing to the messengers from Babylon all the precious things, silver, gold, spices, etc. in his dominion"; (see Chapter 39:2) which act signified the exposure of all the Truths, Goods, and Sanctities of the Word and of the church to the influence of Babylon, which is that of adulteration and profanation. (See Chapters 13 and 14, the Exposition.) For which act of Hezekiah the prophet Isaiah was sent to declare that "everything of the church would be taken captive to Babylon", that is, would be adulterated and profaned.]

And Hezekiah prayed, etc.

- As to the true nature of "prayer" see Chapter 1:11-19; 18:7, the Exposition.

16. O Jehovah of Hosts, You God of Israel, who art seated on the Cherubim! You art the God, You alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth! You have made the heavens and the earth!

17. Incline, O Jehovah, Thine ear, and hear; open, O Jehovah, Thine eyes, and see: and hear all the words of Sennacherib, which he has sent to blaspheme the living God.

18. In truth, O Jehovah, the kings of Assyria have laid waste all the nations, and their lands;

Verse 16. The Lord is "seated or dwells on the Cherubim " as to the state of Providence, lest any one should be let in to the holy things of love and of faith except he is prepared by the Lord. That the Cherubim were upon the curtains of the Tabernacle, upon the Veil, upon the walls, of the temple, and upon the doors there, was to signify the Lord's guardian care, lest the Holy Divine should be approached but by the good of love. There were also Cherubim on the Ark, to signify that the Lord Himself cannot be approached but by that good. On this account also it was that the Cherubim were made of solid gold, and in the Temple at Jerusalem of olive-wood, or wood of oil; for by "gold" and by "oil" is signified the good of love. Arcana Coelestia 3384. See also 9509.

19. And have cast their gods into the fire: for they were not gods, but the work of the hands of man, wood and stone; therefore they have destroyed them.

20. And now, O Jehovah, our God, save us from his hand; that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that You alone art Jehovah!

21. Then Isaiah the son of Amoz sent unto Hezekiah, saying, Thus says Jehovah the God of Israel, Whereas you have prayed to Me against Sennacherib, king of Assyria:

Verse 19. By "the gods of the kings of Assyria" are here signified reasonings from falsities and evils, which agree with the proprium of man, wherefore they are also called "the work of the hands of man, wood and stone", or idols of wood and of stone, which signify the evils and falsities of religion and of doctrine originating in the proprium, Apocalypse Explained 686.

22. This is the word which Jehovah has spoken concerning him: The virgin, daughter of Zion, despises you, she laughs at you; the daughter of Jerusalem shakes her head at you.

23. Whom have you blasphemed and reviled; and against whom, have you exalted your voice? and have lifted up thine eyes on high? Even against the Holy One of Israel.

Verse 22. There are two affections which constitute the church, - one, or the affection of Good, constitutes the celestial church, and is called in the Word "the virgin, the daughter of Zion, and the other, or the affection of Truth, constitutes the spiritual church, and is called in the Word "the daughter of Jerusalem." Arcana Coelestia 2362. See the Exposition of Isaiah Chapter 16:2.

24. By the hand of your servants have you blasphemed the Lord, and have said, By the multitude of my chariots will I ascend the height of the mountains, the sides of Lebanon; and I will cut down the tall cedars thereof, and the choice fir-trees thereof: and I will enter into the height of his border, and the forest of his fruitful field.

Verse 24: By these words, in the internal sense, is described the haughtiness of those who, by ratiocinations from falsities, are desirous to destroy the Goods and Truths of the church. The "king of Assyria" is the rational Principle perverted; "the multitude of his chariots" signifies ratiocinations from falsities of doctrine. To ascend the height of the mountains, the sides of Lebanon", and to "cut down the tall cedars and the choice fir-trees thereof", signifies the endeavour to destroy the Goods and Truths of the church, as well internal as external; the mountains denote the Goods of the church, the "sides of Lebanon" where the Goods are conjoined with Truths; "Lebanon" denoting the spiritual church, the "cedars" the Internal Truths thereof, which are from Good, and the "fir-trees" the external Truths thereof, also from Good. Such is the signification of these words in the spiritual sense in which they are understood in heaven. Apocalypse Explained 405. See also 654.

25. I have digged, and I have drunk waters; and I have dried up with the sole of my steps all the streams of Egypt.

Verse 25. The "king of Assyria", or the rational principle perverted, destroying all the knowledges and apperceptions of Truth, is signified by "drying up with the sole of his steps all the streams of Egypt." The reason why the "streams of Egypt" signify the knowledges and apperceptions of Truth is, because "Egypt" is the natural man as to scientifics, knowledges, and apperceptions which belong to the natural man, as intelligence does to the spiritual man. Apocalypse Explained 518. See Chapter 19, the Exposition.

26. Hast you not heard, from of old, that I have done it? and, from the days of antiquity, that I have formed it? now have I brought it to pass, that you should be to lay waste fortified cities into ruinous heaps.

Verse 26. These words refer to the antediluvian time denoted by "of old" and "the days of antiquity." Arcana Coelestia 274.

To "lay waste fortified cities into ruinous heaps", as said of the king of Assyria, is to destroy, by false reasonings, the truths and doctrinals of the church and of the Word. See the Exposition of Isaiah Chapter 23:13.

27. Therefore were their inhabitants of small strength; they were dismayed and confounded: they were as the grass of the field, and as the green herb; the grass of the house-top; and as the corn blasted before it is grown up.

28. But your sitting down, and your going out, and your coming in, and your rage against Me I have known:

Verse 27. "Inhabitants of small strength [or, literally, short in hand]", signifies of no power. Arcana Coelestia 878.

As the grass of the field, - as the corn blasted, etc. - See Chapter 15:6, Exposition.

Verse 28. It was a common form of speech among the ancients to say that they knew the "entering in" and the "going. out" of a person, to indicate that they knew all, the state of his life; and as this form of speech derived its origin from correspondences in the other life, wherefore, in the Word, similar things are said and. signified thereby, as in Samuel:

"Achish called David, and said unto him, You have been upright, and your going out and your coming in with me in the camp has been good in my eyes; for I have not found evil in you." (1 Samuel 29:6) "His going out and his entering in being good in his eyes", signifies that all the state of his life had been well pleasing to him.

Again,

"You know Abner, that he came to persuade you, and to know your going out and your coming in, and to know all that you doest. (2 Samuel 3:25)

To know his "going out" and his "coming in" is to know all the thoughts and acts of his life; wherefore it is said, "that he might know all that you doest."

Again,

"Your sitting down, your going out, your coming in, and your rage against Me I have known"; (Isaiah 37:28),

speaking of Sennacherib the king of Assyria. To know his "going out" and his " coming in", is to know all things of his counsel. Arcana Coelestia 9927.

29. Because your rage against Me, and your insolence, is come up into Mine ears, therefore will I put My hook into your nose, and My bridle into your lips; and I will turn you back by the way in which you earnest.

Verse 29. These things are said concerning the "king of Assyria", by whom is signified ratiocination from falsities; for, in the good sense, by "Assyria" is signified the rational principle.

Because that king then besieged Jerusalem, and blasphemed God, it was said to him that "a hook should be put into his nose", whereby is signified that stupidity and foolishness should possess him; for the "nose" signifies perception, and the "hook" the extracting thereof, properly, immersion into the corporeal sensual principle, which, when separated from the rational, is stupid.

It is likewise said that "a bridle should be put into his lips", whereby is signified "insanity as to the understanding of Truth; for the "lips" signify thought from the understanding, and the "bridle" the retraction thereof.

To "turn him back by the way in which he came", signifies into the falsities by which he was about to perish; wherefore his "army", by which those falsities were signified, perished by a great slaughter. Apocalypse Explained 923.

30. And this shall be a sign unto you: Eat this year that which springs up of itself; and the second year, that which grows up of its own accord: and in the third year, sow you, and reap; and plant vineyards, and eat the fruit thereof.

Verse 30. This was said to Hezekiah the king, when Sennacherib, king of Assyria, made war against him, and spake proudly of himself, and contumeliously of God and of Israel, wherefore also one hundred and eighty-five thousand were smitten in the camp, and himself was slain by his sons.

The reason why this was done, was, because by "Assyria" is signified the rational [principle], and the same by the "king of Assyria", and by "Judea" the celestial [principle] of the church, and the spiritual [principle] by the "king" thereof; but, in this case, by the "king of Assyria" is signified the rational [principle] perverted, which, by false reasonings, destroys all the celestial and spiritual things of the church, which are the Goods and Truths thereof; and inasmuch as by "Judea" and by the "king" thereof is signified the celestial and spiritual principle of the church, which should be from the Lord when He came into the world, therefore such things are said, by which is described the regeneration of those who should be of that church.

Wherefore by "the sign, that they should eat in the first year that which springs up of itself [or spontaneously]", is signified celestial Good which shall be implanted in them from the Lord; by "that which grows up of its own accord in the second year", is signified the Truth of that Good which shall thence be derived; by "sowing, reaping, planting vineyards, and eating the fruit thereof", are signified all the Goods and Truths which thence flow forth; by "sowing and reaping" is signified the implantation of Good and the reception thereof; by "planting vineyards", the implantation of Truth and the reception thereof; and by "eating the fruits of them", the fruition of Goods, and satisfaction thence derived, appertaining to the regenerate man.

These things are called a "sign", because they are testifications concerning the celestial church with those who are understood in the spiritual sense by "Judah", whose regeneration is effected from the Lord by the implantation of celestial Good, afterwards by the implantation of spiritual Good, which, in its essence, is the Truth of celestial Good; and lastly, by multiplication and fructification in the natural man. Apocalypse Explained 700.

31. And again shall the escaped, the remnant of the house of Judah, strike root downwards, and bear fruit upwards.

32. For from Jerusalem shall go forth a remnant; and the escaped from Mount Zion: the zeal of Jehovah of Hosts shall do this.

33. Therefore thus says Jehovah concerning the king of Assyria, He shall not enter into this city; nor shall he shoot an arrow into it; nor shall he come before it with a shield; nor shall he cast up a mound against it.

34. By the way in which he came, by the same shall he return; and into this city shall he not come, says Jehovah.

Verses 31, 32. Again shall the escaped, the remnant of the house of Judah, strike root downwards, and bear fruit upwards, etc. - As to the meaning of the "remnant" and the "escaped", see Chapter 1:9; 4:2, 3, the Exposition.

[The "remnant of the house of Judah" is said to "strike root downwards", to denote that truths from a celestial origin will then be implanted in the natural man; and to "bear fruits upwards", that goods of life will be of a celestial and spiritual origin, or from the "internal man.]

35. And I will defend this city to save it, for Mine own sake, and for the sake of David My servant.

Verse 35. These words are said of the Assyrians, in whose camp one hundred and eighty-five thousand were slain. "David" stands for the Lord, who was to come, and who, as to His Humanity, is called a "Servant." That " David", in the Word, signifies the Lord, may be seen, Arcana Coelestia 1880.

Whilst the Lord was in a state of humiliation, when He had with Him the infirm Human, He worshipped Jehovah as another separate from Himself, and indeed as a Servant, for the Human is respectively nothing else; wherefore, in the Word, a "servant" is predicated of that Human, as in Isaiah 37:35; 42:1, 19. Arcana Coelestia 2159.

36. And the angel of Jehovah went forth, and smote in the camp of the Assyrians a hundred and fourscore and five thousand: and when they arose early in the morning, behold, they were all dead corpses.

Verse 36. A "camp" and an "encampment" signify, in a good sense, heaven. The reason is, because an " army" signifies Truths and Goods, which are arranged by the Lord according to heavenly order. Hence arrangement according to order is the encampinq of an army, and the heavenly order itself, which is heaven, is the "camp." This "camp", or this order, is such that it cannot possibly be broken into by hell, although hell is in a continual endeavour to break into it. Hence it is that "the camp of God", in Genesis 32:2, signifies heaven, This essential order is what was represented by the "encampments" of the sons of Israel in the wilderness, thus heaven itself was represented. The dwelling together therein, according to the tribes, was called a "camp"; the "tabernacle" which was in the midst, and about which they encamped, represented the Lord Himself. As many expressions in the Word have an opposite sense, so also has a "camp", and according to such sense it signifies evils and falsities, consequently hell, as in David:

"Though a host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear." [Psalm 27:3)

Neither is anything else but hell meant by "the camp of Assyria, in which the angel of Jehovah smote a hundred and eighty and five thousand; (Isaiah 37:36)

In like manner also by "the camp of the Egyptians." (Exodus 14:20, 28) Arcana Coelestia 4236.

[The destruction of the Assyrian army was effected by the opening of a hell, and by a powerful influx thence proceeding, which corresponded to the evil and the false signified by the opposition of "the Assyrian army", and its determination to destroy "Jerusalem", which represented heaven and the church. A similar thing is described in the Revelation 20:9:

"Gog and Magog went up on the breadth of the earth and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city; and, fire came down from God out of heaven and devoured them." 'But this happened in the world of spirits, whereas the destruction of the Assyrian army took place in the natural world, on account of the representatives which then prevailed In the representative or typical church of the Jews. In the one case it is said that "an angel from Jehovah effected the destruction of the Assyrian army", and in the other that a fire from God out of heaven devoured the enemies of the camp of the saints and the beloved city." But that the destruction was effected either by "the angel of Jehovah" or by " fire from God out of heaven" is an appearance; the real truth is, that they were destroyed by their own evils and falsities, (Apocalypse Revealed 863) which, at the period of Judgment, are brought out, and which then overwhelm the wicked with perdition. The Lord never comes to destroy, but to save, and when the good are separated from the wicked, the latter are left to their own evil states and sink down into their respective hells.]

37. Then Sennacherib, king of Assyria, decamped, and departed, and returned, and dwelt at Nineveh.

38. And it came to pass, that as he was bowing himself down in the house of Nisroch his god, Adrammelech and Sharezer, his sons, smote him with the sword; and they escaped, into the land of Ararat: and Esar-haddon his son reigned in his stead.

Verses 37, 38. That "Nineveh" signifies what is false, or false doctrines arising from the fallacies of the senses, and from the obscurity of the understanding not illustrated, and from ignorance, is evident from Jonah, who was sent to Nineveh, which city was pardoned because they were of such a quality. In Isaiah things both historical and prophetical are mentioned, which involve and represent such arcana in like manner as all other historical things mentioned in the Word. In Isaiah we read respecting the king of Assyria, that "he dwelt at Nineveh, and that when he was bowing himself down in the house of Nisroch his god, he was slain by his sons with the sword." (Isaiah 37:37, 38)

Although these things are historical, they are nevertheless prophetical, involving and representing similar arcana. By "Nineveh" here is signified external worship in which are falsities, and as this worship was idolatrous, "he was slain by his sons with the sword." His "sons" are falsities, and the "sword" is the punishment of the false. Arcana Coelestia 1188.

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Isaiah Chapter 37

1. AND it came to pass, that when the king Hezekiah heard it, he rent his clothes, and covered himself with sackcloth, and went into the house of Jehovah.

2. And he sent Eliakim, who was over the household, and Shebna the scribe, and the elders of the priests, covered with sackcloth, to Isaiah, the son of Amoz, the prophet.

3. And they said unto him, Thus says Hezekiah, This day is a day of distress, and of rebuke, and of contumely: for the sons are come to the birth, and there is not strength to bring forth.

4. Perhaps Jehovah your God will hear the words of Rabshakeh, whom his lord the king of Assyria has sent to blaspheme the living God, and will reprove the words which Jehovah your God has heard: and do you offer up prayer for the remnant which is found.

5. And the servants of king Hezekiah came to Isaiah.

6. And Isaiah said unto them, Thus shall you say to your lord, Thus says Jehovah, Be not afraid because of the words which you have heard, with which the servants of the king of Assyria have blasphemed Me.

7. Behold, I will infuse a spirit into him; and he shall hear a report, and return to his own land; and I will cause him to fall by the sword in his own land.

8. And Rabshakeh returned, and found the king of Assyria fighting against Libnah: for he heard that he had departed from Lachish.

9. And he heard concerning Tirhakah, king of Cush, saying, He is come forth to make war with you. And when he heard it, he sent messengers to Hezekiah, saying,

10. Thus shall you speak to Hezekiah, king of Judah, saying, Let not your God, in whom you confide, deceive you, saying, That Jerusalem shall not: be given up into the hand of the king of Assyria.

11. Behold, you have heard what the kings of Assyria have done to all lands, by destroying them utterly; and shalt you be delivered?

12. Have the gods of the nations delivered those which my fathers have destroyed? Gozan, and Haran, and Rezeph; and the sons of Eden which were in Telassar?

13. Where is the king of Hamath, and the king of Arpad, and the king of the city of Sepharvaim, of Henah, and of Ivah?

14. And Hezekiah received the letters from the hand of the messengers, and read them; and he went up to the house of Jehovah: and Hezekiah spread them before the face of Jehovah.

15. And Hezekiah prayed to Jehovah, saying,

16. O Jehovah of Hosts, You God of Israel, who art seated on the Cherubim! You art the God, You alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth! You have made the heavens and the earth!

17. Incline, O Jehovah, Thine ear, and hear; open, O Jehovah, Thine eyes, and see: and hear all the words of Sennacherib, which he has sent to blaspheme the living God.

18. In truth, O Jehovah, the kings of Assyria have laid waste all the nations, and their lands;

19. And have cast their gods into the fire: for they were not gods, but the work of the hands of man, wood and stone; therefore they have destroyed them.

20. And now, O Jehovah, our God, save us from his hand; that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that You alone art Jehovah!

21. Then Isaiah the son of Amoz sent unto Hezekiah, saying, Thus says Jehovah the God of Israel, Whereas you have prayed to Me against Sennacherib, king of Assyria:

22. This is the word which Jehovah has spoken concerning him: The virgin, daughter of Zion, despises you, she laughs at you; the daughter of Jerusalem shakes her head at you.

23. Whom have you blasphemed and reviled; and against whom, have you exalted your voice? and have lifted up thine eyes on high? Even against the Holy One of Israel.

24. By the hand of your servants have you blasphemed, the Lord, and have said, By the multitude of my chariots will I ascend the height of the mountains, the sides of Lebanon; and I will cut down the tall cedars thereof, and the choice fir-trees thereof: and I will enter into the height of his border, and the forest of his fruitful field.

25. I have digged, and I have drunk waters; and I have dried up with the sole of my steps all the streams of Egypt.

26. Hast you not heard, from of old, that I have done it? and, from the days of antiquity, that I have formed it? now have I brought it to pass, that you should be to lay waste fortified cities into ruinous heaps.

27. Therefore were their inhabitants of small strength; they were dismayed and confounded: they were as the grass of the field, and as the green herb; the grass of the house-top; and as the corn blasted before it is grown up.

28. But your sitting down, and your going out, and your coming in, and your rage against Me I have known:

29. Because your rage against Me, and your insolence, is come up into Mine ears, therefore will I put My hook into your nose, and My bridle into your lips; and I will turn you back by the way in which you earnest.

30. And this shall be a sign unto you: Eat this year that which springs up of itself; and the second year, that which grows up of its own accord: and in the third year, sow you, and reap; and plant vineyards, and eat the fruit thereof.

31. And again shall the escaped, the remnant of the house of Judah, strike root downwards, and bear fruit upwards.

32. For from Jerusalem shall go forth a remnant; and the escaped from Mount Zion: the zeal of Jehovah of Hosts shall do this.

33. Therefore thus says Jehovah concerning the king of Assyria, He shall not enter into this city; nor shall he shoot an arrow into it; nor shall he come before it with a shield; nor shall he cast up a mound against it.

34. By the way in which he came, by the same shall he return; and into this city shall he not come, says Jehovah.

35. And I will defend this city to save it, for Mine own sake, and for the sake of David My servant.

36. And the angel of Jehovah went forth, and smote in the camp of the Assyrians a hundred and fourscore and five thousand: and when they arose early in the morning, behold, they were all dead corpses.

37. Then Sennacherib, king of Assyria, decamped, and departed, and returned, and dwelt at Nineveh.

38. And it came to pass, that as he was bowing himself down in the house of Nisroch his god, Adrammelech and Sharezer, his sons, smote him with the sword; and they escaped, into the land of Ararat: and Esar-haddon his son reigned in his stead.

From Swedenborg's Works

Main explanations:

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 37


Other references to this verse:

Arcana Coelestia 3384, 9408, 9509

Doctrine of the Lord 45


References from Swedenborg's drafts, indexes & diaries:

Apocalypse Explained 277, 573, 662

Hop to Similar Bible Verses

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Bible Word Meanings

lord
The Lord, in the simplest terms, is love itself expressed as wisdom itself. In philosophic terms, love is the Lord's substance and wisdom is His...

hosts
A host and an army come from the same Hebrew word and mean the same thing in Bible; when the Children of Israel were numbered...

God
When the Bible speaks of "Jehovah," it is representing love itself, the inmost love that is the essence of the Lord. That divine love is...

israel
'Israel,' in Jeremiah 23:8, signifies the spiritual natural church. The children of Israel dispersed all the literal sense of the Word by falsities. 'The children...

cherubims
A Cherub has as its first definition in the dictionary, “A winged heavenly creature.” Cherubim is the plural of cherub. In the Word, the words...

kingdoms
Land' in the Word, denotes the church, for the things which signify the church also signify the things relating to the church, for these constitute...

earth
Is there any difference in meaning between “earth” and “ground”? At first it doesn’t seem so; both refer to the soil making up the land...

Heaven and earth
'Heaven and earth' signify, in general, the internal and external church. In particular, they signify the internal and external, or the spiritual and the natural...

heaven
"Heaven" and "heavens" are used many times in the Bible, with a couple of variations of meaning. Sometimes it is relatively literal, including times when...

Resources for parents and teachers

The items listed here are provided courtesy of our friends at the General Church of the New Jerusalem. You can search/browse their whole library at the New Church Vineyard website.


 All Power Is by Means of the Word
Worship Talk | Ages 7 - 14

 The Destruction of Sennacherib
Worship Talk | Ages 7 - 14


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