9809. 'So that they may serve Me in the priestly office' means that which is representative of the Lord. This is clear from the representation of 'the priestly office' in the highest sense as all the service performed by the Lord as the Saviour. And the moving force behind whatever He does as the Saviour is Divine Love, thus Divine Good since all good is an aspect of love. So it is also that in the highest sense 'the priestly office' means the Divine Good of the Lord's Divine Love. There is Divine Good and there is Divine Truth. Divine Good exists within the Lord, and so is His Essential Being (Esse), which in the Word is called Jehovah. But Divine Truth is an emanation from the Lord, and so is the Coming-into-being (Existere) from that Essential Being; this is meant in the Word by God. And since that which is the Coming-into-being from Himself is nonetheless Himself, the Lord is also Divine Truth, which is what is Divine and His in the heavens. For the heavens are a coming-into-being from Him, because the angels there are recipients of what is Divine and His, celestial angels being recipients of the Divine Good which emanates from Him, but spiritual angels recipients of the Divine Truth springing from that Good. All this helps to make clear what it was belonging to the Lord that was represented by the priestly office, and what it was belonging to the Lord that was represented by the royal office, namely the Divine Good of His Divine Love by the priestly office, and the Divine Truth springing from that Good by the royal office.
 The truth that the priestly office represented the Divine Good of the Lord's Divine Love, thus all the service performed by the Lord as the Saviour, is clear from the following declarations in the Word: In David,
Jehovah said to my Lord, Sit at My right hand, till I make Your enemies as Your footstool. Jehovah will send the rod of strength from Zion; have dominion in the midst of Your enemies. Your people will be prompt to offer themselves on the day of Your power, in the beauty of holiness. From the womb of the dawn You have the dew of Your birth. Jehovah has sworn and will not repent, You are a priest for ever, after the manner 1
of Melchizedek. The Lord is on Your right hand; He struck kings on the day of His anger. He has judged among the nations, He has filled [the places] with dead bodies, He has stricken [one who was] head over much land. He will drink from the stream by the way; therefore he will lift up his head. Psalms 110:1-7.
These declarations show what the Lord as a priest, consequently what the priestly office within the Lord represented, namely the whole work of saving the human race. For the subject in this Psalm is the Lord's conflicts with the hells when He was in the world. Through those conflicts He acquired for Himself a power over the hells that was almighty and Divine, by means of which He saved the human race and also today saves all who accept Him. This very salvation, because the Divine Good of Divine Love is the moving force behind the accomplishment of it, is the reason why it says in reference to the Lord, 'You are a priest for ever, after the manner of Melchizedek'. The name Melchizedek means King of Righteousness, which the Lord was called because He had become [the One in whom there was] righteousness and consequently salvation, as accords with what has been shown in 9715.
 But since the declarations in this Psalm each contain arcana which have to do with the Lord's conflicts when He was in the world, and those arcana cannot be revealed without the internal sense, let a brief explanation of them be supplied. Jehovah said to my Lord means that the subject is the Lord when He was in the world. 'Lord' here is used to mean the Lord's Divine Human, as is clear in Matthew 22:43-45; Mark 12:36; Luke 20:42-44. Sit at My right hand means the almighty power of Divine Good, exercised through Divine Truth, the Lord being Divine Truth at that time, and Divine Truth being that with which He entered into and won the battle. For the meaning of 'sitting at the right hand' as a state of power, and in reference to the Divine as almighty power, see 3387, 4592, 4933, 6948, 7518, 7673, 8281, 9133; and the fact that all the power which good possesses is exercised through truth, 6344, 6423, 8304, 9327, 9410, 9639, 9643.
Luke 20:41-44; Mark 12:35-36; Matthew 22:41-43)
 Till I make Your enemies as Your footstool means until the time when the evils which exist in and spring from the hells have been subdued and made subject to His Divine power. Jehovah will send the rod of strength from Zion means the power at that time received from celestial good, 'Zion' meaning this good, see 2362, 9055. Have dominion in the midst of Your enemies means that this good has dominion over evils. Evils are enemies because they are contrary to what is Divine, especially to the Lord. Your people will be prompt to offer themselves on the day of Your power means the Divine Truths engaging in conflict then. In the beauty of holiness means which spring from Divine Good. From the womb of the dawn You have the dew of Your birth means conception from Divine Good itself, from which He had Divine Truth. Jehovah has sworn and will not repent means what is sure and certain.
 You are a priest for ever means the Divine Good of Divine Love within Him. After the manner of Melchizedek means that His Divine Human is of a like nature. The name Melchizedek means King of Righteousness, thus Jehovah who has become Righteousness through conflicts and victories, 9715. The Lord is on Your right hand means Divine Truth from Him at that time, through which almighty power is exercised, as above. He struck kings on the day of His anger means the destruction of falsities then, 'the day of anger' being the time when He fought against evils and destroyed them. 'Kings' are truths and in the contrary sense falsities, 2015, 2069, 4575, 4581, 4966, 5044, 5068, 6148. He has judged among the nations means the dispersion of evils; for 'nations' are forms of good and in the contrary sense evils, 1259, 1260, 1849, 6005. He has filled [the places] with dead bodies means the resulting spiritual death, which is a total deprivation of truth and good. He has stricken [one who was] head over much land means casting hellish self-love down into the hells, and the damnation of that love. He will drink from the stream by the way; therefore he will lift up his head means the endeavour to rise up from there by means of reasonings about truths. This is the meaning which those in heaven perceive within these words when that Psalm is read by someone in the world.
Arcana Coelestia 1259-1260)
 Since the priestly office was representative of the Lord's whole work of salvation which was motivated by Divine Love, the performance of all the worship of God furthermore belonged to the office of the priest. Acts of worship at that time consisted first and foremost in offering burnt offerings, sacrifices, and minchahs, in setting the loaves on the table of the Presence, in keeping the lamps alight day by day, and in offering incense, and consequently in expiating or making atonement for the people and forgiving sins. In addition to all this their office consisted, when they were at the same time prophets, in explaining God's law and in teaching. The fact that all these duties were performed by Aaron and his sons is clear from the description in Moses of the establishment of the priesthood; and all those duties, it is self-evident, were representative of the Lord's acts of salvation. All this also explains why the portions of the sacrifices and minchahs that were Jehovah's, that is, the Lord's, were given to Aaron, likewise various kinds of first fruits as well as tithes, see Exodus 29:1-36; Leviticus 7:35-36; 23:15-22; 27:21; Numbers 5:6-11; 18:8-20, 25-end; Deuteronomy 18:1-4. The firstborn were also given; but in place of all the firstborn of human beings stood the Levites, who were given as a gift to Aaron, see Numbers 1:47; 3:9, because they were Jehovah's, Numbers 3:12-13, 40-45.
Deuteronomy 18:1-5; Leviticus 23:15-21; Numbers 5:6-10, 18:8-19, 18:25-32)
 Because the Lord as regards His whole work of salvation was represented by the high priest, and the actual work of salvation by his office, which is called the priestly office, no inheritance and portion among the people was given to Aaron and his sons; for it says that Jehovah God is their inheritance and portion, Numbers 18:20. Nor was any given to the Levites, because they belonged to Aaron, Numbers 26:58-63; Deuteronomy 10:9; 18:1-2. For the people represented heaven and the Church; but Aaron and his sons, and the Levites, represented the good of love and faith, which composes heaven and the Church, and so represented the Lord, who is the source of that good. Therefore He gave over the land to the people as an inheritance, but not to the priests, for the Lord is present in people, but not among them as an individual person.
 Something similar is implied by the following words in Isaiah,
You will be called the priests of Jehovah, you will be spoken of as the ministers of our God. You will eat the wealth of the gentiles, and in their glory you will glory. Isaiah 61:6.
'Eating the wealth of the gentiles' stands for making forms of good one's own, 'glorying in their glory' for having the benefit of truths, and so for the joy and happiness which those forms of good and truths give. As regards the meaning of 'the gentiles' or 'the nations' as forms of good, see 1259, 1260, 4574, 6005; and as regards that of 'glory' as truth from the Divine, 9429.
Arcana Coelestia 1259-1260)
 Various places in the Word mention 'kings and priests', also 'kings, princes, priests, and prophets' in a series. But in these places truths in their entirety are meant in the internal sense by 'kings', and leading truths by 'princes'; forms of good in their entirety are meant by 'priests', and doctrinal teachings by 'prophets', as in the Book of Revelation,
Jesus Christ has made us kings and priests. Revelation 1:6; 5:10.
The house of Israel is ashamed, they, their kings, their princes, and their priests, and their prophets. Jeremiah 2:26.
In the same prophet,
On that day the heart of the king and the heart of the princes will perish, and the priests will be dumbfounded and the prophets left wondering. Jeremiah 4:9.
In the same prophet,
At that time they will bring out the bones of the kings of Judah, and the bones of its princes, and the bones of the priests, and the bones of the prophets. Jeremiah 8:1.
In the abstract sense, separate from actual persons, truths in their entirety are meant by 'kings', see 1672, 2015, 2069, 4581, 4966, 5044, 6148; leading truths by 'princes', 1482, 2089, 5044; forms of good by 'priests', 1728, 2015 (end), 3670, 6148; and doctrinal teachings derived from and concerning all these by 'prophets', 2534, 7269. The Lord's kingship furthermore is meant by His name Christ, Anointed One, or Messiah, and His priesthood by the name Jesus; for Jesus means Saviour or Salvation, regarding which the following is stated in Matthew,
The angel appearing to Joseph in a dream said to him, You shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins. Matthew 1:21.
Since this 2
belonged to the priestly office the high priest's duty of expiating or making atonement for people's sins had the same representation, Leviticus 4:26, 31, 35; 5:6, 10, 13, 16, 18; 6:7; 9:7; 15:15, 30.
 Since evil cannot possibly be combined with good, because each repels the other, various kinds of acts of purification were ordained for Aaron and his sons whenever they served in the priestly office, whether at the altar or in the tent of meeting. It was also ordained for example that the high priest should not marry anyone other than a virgin; he was not allowed to marry a widow, divorced woman, or prostitute, Leviticus 21:13-15. If any of Aaron's sons who were unclean had eaten from the holy offerings they should be cut off, Leviticus 22:2-9. None of Aaron's seed who had a defect should offer bread, Leviticus 21:17-21. The high priest should not use a razor on his head, nor tear his clothes, nor defile himself with any dead body, not even for his father or mother, nor go out of the sanctuary, Leviticus 21:10-12. These and many other laws, as has been stated, were laid down because the high priest represented the Lord and His Divine Goodness, and the nature of good is such that no evil can be combined with it. For good recoils from evil, and evil has a horror of good, as hell has of heaven; therefore it is impossible for them to be joined to each other.
 As regards truth however, its nature is such that it can be combined with falsity, but not falsity that has evil in it, only that which has good in it. That is, it can be combined with the kind of good that exists with very young children or older boys and girls who are still at the age of innocence, or with upright gentiles who are uninformed; and it can be combined with the kind of good that exists with all who are confined to the literal sense of the Word and to teachings derived from it and yet have the good of life as their end in view. For this good, if it is the end in view, dispels from falsity all inclination towards evil, and uses it in such a way that it makes it look to outward appearance like truth.
1. The Latin means according to My word but the Hebrew means after the manner of, which Swedenborg has in some other places where he quotes this verse.
2. i.e. the work of salvation
Exodus 28:1; Leviticus 21:10-15, Leviticus 21:17-20; Matthew 1:20-21)