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Ezequiel 4:17

Portuguese: Almeida Atualizada         

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17 até que lhes falte o pão e a água, e se espantem uns com os outros, e se definhem na sua iniqüidade.

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From Swedenborg's Works

Main explanations:

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 127

Other references to this verse:

Arcanos Celestes 2165, 3104, 9323, 9412, 10037

Apocalipse Revelado 50, 350, 880

A Brief Exposition of New Church Doctrine 100

Doutrina Do Senhor 16, 64

True Christian Religion 130

References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 71, 617, 633, 805

Coronis (An Appendix to True Christian Religion) 56

Scriptural Confirmations 4, 52

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 Ezekiel: The Prophet As an Example
Worship Talk | Ages 7 - 14

From Swedenborg's Works


True Christian Religion #130

True Christian Religion (Chadwick translation)      

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130. The following passages establish that prophets represented the state of their church as regards doctrine from the Word, and living in accordance with that doctrine. The prophet Isaiah was commanded to strip the sackcloth from his loins and his shoe from his foot, and to go naked and barefoot for three years as a sign and a token (Isaiah 20:2-3). The prophet Ezekiel was commanded to represent the state of the church by packing his bags for an exile, and to move to another place in the sight of the Children of Israel; he was to bring out his baggage during the day, and go out in the evening through a hole in the house-wall; he was to cover his face so as not to see the ground, and thus he would be a token for the house of Israel, and he was to say, 'Behold, I am your token; as I have done, so shall it be with you' (Ezekiel 12:3-7, 11). The prophet Hosea was commanded to represent the state of the church by taking a prostitute as a wife; he did so, and she bore him three children, one of whom he called Jezreel, the second No-pity, and the third Not-my-people. Again he was commanded to go and love a woman who was loved by another man, an adulteress; and he bought her (Hosea 1:2-9; 3:2-3). Another prophet was commanded to put ashes on his eyes, and to allow himself to be struck and beaten (1 Kings 20:35, 38).

The prophet Ezekiel was commanded, in order to represent the state of the church, to take a brick and to draw a picture of Jerusalem on it; to lay siege to it, and make a rampart and a mound to attack it; to place an iron griddle between himself and the city; and to lie on his left side and on his right side. Also to take wheat, barley, lentils, millet and spelt, and to make bread from them; also to make a cake of barley mixed with human dung; and because he begged off this, he was allowed to make it with cow-dung. It was said to him:

Lie on your left side, and put the iniquity of the house of Israel upon it; for the number of days that you lie on that side, you shall carry their iniquity. For I will make you carry the iniquity of the house of Israel for a number of days equal to the years of their iniquity, namely, three hundred and ninety days. When you have completed this period, you are to lie a second time on your right side, to carry the iniquity of the house of Judah, Ezekiel 4:1-15.

[2] It is clear from what follows this passage that the prophet by these actions carried the iniquities of the house of Israel and the house of Judah, and did not remove and so expiate them, but merely represented and demonstrated them:

Thus said Jehovah, the Children of Israel shall eat their bread unclean. Behold, I break the staff of bread, so that they may lack bread and water, and they shall be desolate, a man and his brother, and they shall waste away because of their iniquity, Ezekiel 4:13, 16-17.

The meaning is similar where it is said of the Lord:

He bore our sicknesses, He carried our pains. Jehovah made the iniquities of us all to fall upon Him. By His knowledge He made many righteous, in that He carried their iniquities Isaiah 53:4, 6, 11.

The whole of this chapter deals with the Lord's passion.

[3] The details of the Lord's passion show clearly that as the Prophet He represented the state of the Jewish church with regard to the Word. For example, His betrayal by Judas; His arrest and conviction by the chief priests and the elders; His being beaten; His head being struck with a reed; His crowning with a crown of thorns; the dividing of His garments, and the casting of lots for His tunic; His crucifixion; His being given vinegar to drink; His side being pierced; His burial and resurrection on the third day.

His betrayal by Judas meant that He was betrayed by the Jewish nation, which possessed the Word, since Judas represented that nation. His arrest and conviction by the chief priests and elders meant that the whole of that church so behaved. His being beaten, being spat upon in the face, being flogged and having His head struck with a reed meant their similar treatment of the Word as regards the Divine truths it contains. The crowning with thorn meant that they falsified and adulterated these truths. The dividing of His garments and throwing lots for His tunic meant that they threw to the winds all the truths of the Word, but not its spiritual sense, which is what the tunic meant. The crucifixion meant that they destroyed and profaned the whole Word. Their giving Him vinegar to drink meant that they offered only falsified truths, which is why He did not drink it. The piercing of His side meant that they utterly extinguished all the truth and all the good of the Word. His burial meant the rejection of all He had left from His mother. His resurrection on the third day meant His glorification, or the union of His Human with the Father's Divine. From this it is now plain that 'carrying iniquities' does not mean removing them, but representing the profaning of truths in the Word.

(References: 1 Kings 20:35-38; Ezekiel 4)

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   Study this Passage
From Swedenborg's Works

Inbound References:

True Christian Religion 640

References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Coronis (An Appendix to True Christian Religion) 21

Other New Christian Commentary

Thanks to the Swedenborg Society for the permission to use this translation.