The Bible

 

Matthew 5:1-12 : The Beatitudes

        

Study the Inner Meaning

1 And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him:

2 And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,

3 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

4 Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.

5 Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.

6 Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.

7 Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.

8 Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.

9 Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.

10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.

12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

   Study the Inner Meaning
From Swedenborg's Works

Explanations or references:

Arcana Coelestia 1017, 2371, 2658, 3863, 8002, 9263, 9818

Apocalypse Revealed 209, 285, 323, 526, 956

Conjugial Love 482

Divine Providence 33

The Lord 49

Sacred Scripture 51, 57

Life 17, 84

Heaven and Hell 357

True Christian Religion 96, 156, 226, 440


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 118, 122, 304, 386, 612, 695, 746, ...

Spiritual Experiences 1325

Marriage 96

Scriptural Confirmations 4, 6, 12, 20, 30, 68, 81, ...

Other New Christian Commentary

  Stories and their meanings:



Hop to Similar Bible Verses

2 Kings 22:20

Psalms 17:15, 24:3, 4, 37:9, 11, 22, 29, 34, 41:2, 119:28, 126:5

Proverbs 2:21, 11:17, 12:20, 21:21

Isaiah 51:1, 57:15, 61:2

Jeremiah 15:15, 31:25

Word/Phrase Explanations

seeing
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...

multitudes
'A multitude' relates to truths.

into a mountain
'To be taken up into a mountain,' as in Revelation 21:10, signifies being taken up into the third heaven, because it says 'in the spirit.'...

disciples
A disciple in Matthew 10:41 signifies charity and at the same time, faith from the Lord. It disciple signifies the truth of life, and a...

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

poor
"The Word talks frequently about aiding the poor and needy. People in possession of external truths who have not yet been brought to internal truths...

spirit
'The seven spirits' in Matthew 12:45 signify all falsities of evil, and as a result, a total extinction of goodness and truth. 'The seven spirits'...

kingdom
In the most general sense, a kingdom in the Bible represents a church. In a more specific sense, a kingdom represents a church in regards...

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...

hunger
'Hunger,' or 'famine,' signifies evils of life. 'Hunger,' or 'famine,' signifies desiring good from affection, because 'bread,' in the internal sense, is the good of...

righteousness
The word "righteous" has taken on a bit of negative shading in modern language. That may be because we hear it most often as part...

filled
'To be satiated,' as in Revelation 19:21, signifies being nourished by lusts, and taking them in with delight.

see
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...

persecuted
There are only a few references to "persecution" in Swedenborg, but they say it means "to harrass and slander out of hatred," and it generally...

revile
To revile something – or "reproach," as it is often translated – represents making a direct and deliberate attack on what is spiritually true, in...

persecute
There are only a few references to "persecution" in Swedenborg, but they say it means "to harrass and slander out of hatred," and it generally...

say
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...

rejoice
Feelings of joy and rejoicing flow from our affections, not from our thoughts. Some people might argue that that's not true, that you can rejoice...

glad
Feelings of joy and rejoicing flow from our affections, not from our thoughts. Some people might argue that that's not true, that you can rejoice...

reward
A "reward" in the Bible represents something that brings people together, or brings spiritual states together, and binds them. It's easy to see this in...

Videos from the Swedenborg Foundation

The videos shown here are provided courtesy of our friends at the Swedenborg Foundation. You can find out more about them here: swedenborg.com.


What is Meant by The Meek Shall Inherit the Earth?

What did Jesus mean by this phrase? Chelsea digs into Swedenborg's writings and the Bible for insights about the importance of humility in our earthly lives.


The Difference Between Grace and Mercy

Grace and mercy are mentioned a lot in the Bible and both come from God, but what's the difference? We dig into the spiritual difference between these two divine auras and how we can open ourselves up to them.

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.


 Acknowledging Our Mistakes
Spiritual tasks offer a reflection on a Biblical story and suggest a task for spiritual growth.
Activity | Ages over 18

 Attitudes for Heavenly Happiness
Article | Ages 15 - 17

 Be A Peacemaker
Spiritual tasks offer a reflection on a Biblical story and suggest a task for spiritual growth.
Activity | Ages over 18

 Blessed Are Those Who Mourn
In the process of trying to be a person who is growing spiritually, there will be mourning. We will see things that are not the way they should be - in ourselves and in the world around us. This sermon examines ways in which we can be comforted?
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

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When we perform acts that agree with the Lord’s teachings in the Word, the Lord will guide them and be in them. 
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

 Cleaning Up Our Act
Spiritual tasks offer a reflection on a Biblical story and suggest a task for spiritual growth.
Activity | Ages over 18

 Compassion for Others
Spiritual tasks offer a reflection on a Biblical story and suggest a task for spiritual growth.
Activity | Ages over 18

 Does the Lord Forgive?
Lesson and activities looking at the Lord's love and mercy in forgiving us.
Religion Lesson | Ages over 15

 Echo the Ten Blessings
Help children learn the Ten Blessings by echoing (repeating) each line or finishing each line for you.
Activity | Ages 4 - 10

 He Makes His Sun Rise on the Evil and the Good
Illustrate the sun shining or the rain falling and being received by two very different kinds of plants: a thorny bush and a fruit tree.
Project | Ages 4 - 14

 Humility
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Activity | Ages over 18

 Inspirational Quotation - Let Your Light Shine
Poster showing a lighthouse with the Lord's words telling us to let our light shine.
Picture | Ages over 8

 Let Your Light Shine
Take turns lighting a candle as you "give glory to the Lord" for letting you help Him touch the lives of people around you.
Activity | Ages 11 - 17

 "Let your light shine…" Calligraphy
Project | Ages 7 - 14

 Loving One Another
This sermon shows that someone who really cares about others will seek to understand the truth so that he may serve in intelligent ways. When this happens, greater blessings are achieved for all. 
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

 Loving Others
The Lord wants us to love everyone but the way we love friends will be different than the way we love those who harm us or others.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 11 - 17

 Matching Quotes with the Ten Blessings
Match each of the Ten Blessings with a quotation from the Old Testament.
Activity | Ages 11 - 17

 Memory Verse: Being a Good Neighbor
Activity | Ages 4 - 14

 Memory Verse: The Ten Blessings
Activity | Ages 4 - 14

 Peace Like a River
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

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Activity | Ages over 18

 Protecting Marriage
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

 Quotes: The Ten Blessings
Teaching Support | Ages over 15

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Activity | Ages over 18

 Separation and Divorce
Marriage is a civil and spiritual covenant. Spiritual laws about divorce and remarriage are not always in agreement with what civil law permits.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 11 - 17

 Simplicity
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Article | Ages 15 - 17

 Strength Through Trials
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Activity | Ages over 18

 Ten Blessings Vocabulary Discovery
Explore the meaning of vocabulary used in the Ten Blessings to help you understand what the Lord is teaching us.
Activity | Ages 7 - 14

 The Blessings of Adversity
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 The Kingdom of Heaven Is Within
When we think of blessings we do not usually think of sadness, difficulty or want. We usually think of happiness, peace and plenty. Indeed the word blessing means happiness. Why, then, does the Lord seem to say the opposite in the Sermon on the Mount? 
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

 The Lord and His Disciple, Simon Peter
Four scenes about the Lord and Peter from the gospels of Matthew and John, and two later scenes from the book of Acts.
Activity | Ages 11 - 14

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Coloring Page | Ages 7 - 14

 The Lord’s Ten Blessings
Worship Talk | Ages 4 - 6

 The Meaning of the Ten Blessings
When the Lord gave the Sermon on the Mount, He was teaching people the steps leading to a heavenly life. The words He spoke then can still teach us how to follow Him into eternal happiness. 
Worship Talk | Ages 7 - 14

 The Sermon on the Mount
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 Sermon on the Mount (3-5 years)
Project | Ages 4 - 6

 The Ten Blessings
The Ten Blessings from the Sermon on the Mount in a color border.
Picture | Ages over 15

 The Ten Blessings (9-11 years)
Project | Ages 11 - 14

 The Ten Blessings Word Search
Find key words of the Ten Blessings in this word search.
Activity | Ages 7 - 14

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Emanuel Swedenborg visited heaven. His vivid accounts describe the nature of angels and the communities they live in.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 11 - 17

 Why Did the Lord Come on Earth?
A lesson and activities exploring the reasons Jesus came on earth and what He accomplished.
Religion Lesson | Ages over 15

 You Are As Happy As You Choose To Be
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Commentary

 

The Beatitudes      

By New Christian Bible Study Staff

This fresco was created by Franz Xaver Kirchebner in the Parish church of St. Ulrich in Gröden, Italy, which was built in the late 18th century.

These verses, the opening phrases of the Sermon on the Mount, hold some of the Bible’s most beautiful and best-loved poetry. Part of its beauty, though, lies in the fact that the meaning is not quite clear. What does it mean to be “poor in spirit”? What does it mean to “inherit the earth” or to be called “the children of God.” The fact that there are many possibilities causes us to linger over the phrases, pondering them.

Understood in the internal sense, these blessings show the spiritual states of the various people who could be receptive of the Lord and the new church he was launching. On a deeper level it shows that states within ourselves that can lead each of us to the Lord and to a deeper understanding of His truth today.

The “poor in spirit” are those who know little about spiritual things, but want to learn. Those that “mourn” are those who want to be good, but see no desire for good in their church. The “meek” are those who love to care for and serve others. To “hunger and thirst after righteousness” shows a desire to rise up, to learn about what’s good and to come to desire it.

The “merciful” are those who love their fellow people. The “pure in heart” are those who love only what is good. “Peacemakers” are those who are in harmony with the Lord, gaining knowledge from Him and wanting what He wants. And to be “persecuted for righteousness’ sake” means acting out of love and care for others, even though you are condemned by others for it.

There’s something of a progression there, from those who simply want to learn to those who actively want to be good people to those who actually are good and acting out of love for others. None of it, though, describes those who are learned in the Jewish traditions, or even necessarily observant in terms of ritual; they are, rather, those who sense that it is possible to be a good person and are willing to make the effort.

And they are promised their rewards! The “kingdom of heaven” is the understanding the angels have of the Lord; “comfort” represents ideas that lead to the good of life; “inheriting the earth” is a state of loving others and being loved by them in return. The overall message is simple: If we truly wish to be good people, and are willing to let the Lord teach us how to be good people, we will end up filled with love and wisdom from Him. And that’s what we need to focus on: The desire to be good, and openness to ideas from the Lord. It’s not about ritual and intellectual “correctness”; it’s about ideas that lead us to be good.

But what of being reviled and persecuted? This depicts temptation, when the hells attack our newborn good desires and true understanding. They cause us to doubt our ability to be truly good and question the ideas that are leading us. And they can do it in many ways, reminding us of the fun we’ll be missing or reminding us of all the bad things we’ve ever done to render us hopeless. They will even attack the Bible and the ideas that come to us through it from the Lord; that’s represented by the idea that people also attacked the prophets.

These states, however, are blessed in their own way; only by battling these evils, which are rooted inside us, can we finally fully embrace the good life we have been striving for. That’s why it is pictured last, and that's why it leads to the “great reward” in heaven.

The Bible

 

Isaiah 51:1

English: King James Version         

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1 Hearken to me, ye that follow after righteousness, ye that seek the LORD: look unto the rock whence ye are hewn, and to the hole of the pit whence ye are digged.

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Explanation of Isaiah 51      

By Rev. John H. Smithson

THE EXPLANATION of Isaiah Chapter 46

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

1. HEARKEN unto Me, you that pursue justice, you that seek Jehovah: look unto the rock whence you were hewn, and to the excavation of the pit, whence you were digged.

VERSE 1. By the "rock." is understood the Lord as to Divine Truth; and by the "pit" is here signified the Word, as also in other places. To be "hewn out of the rock, and digged out of the pit", signifies to be regenerated from divine Truths and divine Goods, thus by Truths from Good from the Lord; for "stones" which are cut out of a rock signify Truths from the Lord, and "ground" which is dug out of the pit signifies Good from the Lord, wherefore it is called "the excavation [effossio] out of the pit." Apocalypse Explained 411.

Verses 1-3. Look unto the rock whence you were hewn, and to the excavation of the pit whence you were digged; etc. - These things are said concerning the Lord, and concerning the New Church from Him. The Lord as to Divine Truth, and as to the doctrine of Truth, is understood by "the rock whence you were hewn", and by "the pit whence you were digged", see above, n.411; but the Lord as to the Divine, from which comes reformation, is understood by "Abraham, to whom they should look", and by "Sarah, who bare them;'' for by "Abraham", "Isaac", and "Jacob", in the Word, are not understood those persons, but the Lord as to His Divine Itself, and the Divine Human, as may be seen in the Arcana Coelestia 1893, 2833, 3245. But the heavenly marriage, which is of Divine Good and Divine Truth, from which comes all reformation, and. thence the church, is signified by "Abraham" and, "Sarah, who bare them."

Inasmuch as the Lord is understood by "Abraham", therefore it is said, "I called, him alone [or when he was but one], and, I blessed him, and I multiplied him"; and afterwards that "Jehovah will comfort Zion, and all her waste places"; "Zion" signifying the New Church, "waste places" Truths destroyed, and "comfort" or "consolation" the restoration of the church. That they who will be of that church will acknowledge the Lord, and receive love to Him, and thence wisdom, is signified by "He shall make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of Jehovah"; "Eden" denoting love to the Lord, and the "garden of Jehovah" wisdom thence derived. Apocalypse Explained 721.

That the Lord, and the Divine Truth, as well as a true faith, is signified by a "Rock", see Chapter 16:1, : Exposition;

2. Look unto Abraham your father, and unto Sarah who bare you: for I called him alone, and I blessed him, and I multiplied him.

Verse 2. The Lord, as to Divine Truth, is called a "rock" and a "pit", and as to Divine Good, "Abraham the father"; and because the marriage of Goodness and Truth is represented by "Abraham and Sarah", as may be seen Arcana Coelestia 1468, 1901, Abraham is called "father", and of Sarah it is said; "she bare you.'" That "Abraham", as father, signifies the Lord as to Divine Good, may be seen in John 8:38, 39; Matthew 3:9, 10; Luke 16:19-31. Arcana Coelestia 3703 Arcana Coelestia 3703[1-23].

3. For Jehovah will comfort Zion: He will comfort all her waste places; and He will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of Jehovah; joy and gladness shall be found therein, thanksgiving, and the voice of singing.

Verse 3. Speaking of the advent of the Lord, and of the establishment of the church, which at that time was devastated or destroyed. By "Zion" is signified the church where the Lord is to be worshipped; by her "waste places" are signified the defect of Truth and Good from a want of knowledge.

By "making her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of Jehovah", is signified that they shall have Truth and Good in abundance; "wilderness" is predicated of the want of Good, and "desert" of the want of Truth :

"Eden" signifies Good in abundance, and the "garden of Jehovah" Truth in abundance. Inasmuch as a "song" and "singing" signify thanksgiving [confession] from joy of heart, therefore it is said, "Joy and gladuess shall be found therein, thanksgiving, and the voice of singing"; the "voice of singing"; denoting the same as a "song." Apocalypse Explained 326.

As to "thanksgiving" (or confession), see Chapter 12:1, the Exposition.

He shall make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of Jehovah, etc. - The spiritual meaning of a "garden" is grounded in the nature of representations in the spiritual world, in which world gardens and paradises appear where dwell the angels who excel in intelligence and wisdom. The intelligence and wisdom which they receive from the Lord form themselves into such representations around them, and this takes place from correspondence; all things that exist in the spiritual world being correspondences. True Christian Religion 467.

Hence it is that man is so often compared to a "tree", and the church to a "garden", as in Isaiah 51:3; 58:11; Jeremiah 31:12. Coronis 27.

4. Attend unto Me, O My people; and give ear unto Me, O My nation: for the law shall proceed from Me, and My judgment will I cause to break forth for a light to the peoples.

5. My justice is near; My salvation is gone forth; and Mine arms shall judge the peoples: the islands shall hope in Me, and on Mine arm shall they trust.

Verses 4, 5. These things are also said concerning the Lord. "Attend unto Me, O My people, and give ear unto Me, O My nation", signifies all of the church who are in Truths and Goods; "people" those who are In Truths, and "nation" those who are in Goods; it is said "attend you" and "give ear" in the plural number, because all are understood. "The law shall proceed from Me, and My judgment will I cause to break forth for a light to the peoples, "signifies that from Him is Divine Good and Divine Truth, from which is illustration; "law" signifies the Divine Good of the Word, and "judgment" the Divine Truth of the Word; and "for a light to the peoples" denotes illustration. "My justice is near, My salvation is gone forth", signifies judgment, when they are saved who are in the Good of love, and who are in Truths thence derived; "justice" is predicated of the salvation of those who are in Good at the day of judgment, and "salvation" of the salvation of those who are in Truths. "Mine arms shall judge the peoples", signifies judgment upon those of the church who are in falsities; "peoples" here being taken in an opposite sense. "The islands shall hope in Me, and on Mine arm shall they trust" signifies the access of those to the church who are remote from the Truths of the church, and their trust in the Lord; "islands" denoting those who are remote from the Truths of the church, because they are in natural light, and not yet in spiritual light from the Word; and to "trust in His arm" signifying confidence in the Lord, who has all power, - "arm", when predicated of the Lord, denoting Omnipotence. Apocalypse Explained 406. See also Arcana Coelestia 9857.

6. Lift up unto the heavens your eyes, and look unto the earth beneath: for the heavens shall vanish away like smoke; and the earth shall wax old like a garment, and its inhabitants shall die in like manner: but My salvation shall be for ever, and My justice shall not be broken.

Verse 6. The heavens shall vanish away like smoke, etc. - By "the heavens which shall vanish away, and the earth which shall wax old like a garment", is understood the church, which successively falls away, and at length is desolated, but not the visible heaven and the habitable earth; wherefore it is said, "and its inhabitants shall die in like manner", - to "die" signifying spiritually to die. Apocalypse Explained 304.

By "smoke" is signified what is false, by which those in the former heaven would perish; and by "a garment waxing old" is signified Truth destroyed by the falsities of evil. A comparison is made between "smoke vanishing away" and "a garment waxing old", because comparisons in the Word are also correspondences, and equally signify. Apocalypse Explained 539.

7. Hearken unto Me, you that know justice; the people in whose heart is My law: fear you not the reproach of men, neither be you dismayed by their revilings.

8. For the moth shall eat them up like a garment, and the worm shall eat them up like wool: but My justice shall be for ever, and My salvation from generation to generation.

Verses 7, 8. Fear you not the reproach of men, neither be you dismayed by their revilings; for the moth shall eat them up like a garment, and the worm shall eat them up like wool, etc. - The "moth" stands for falsities in the extremes of man, and the "worm" for evils therein; for "a garment which the moth eats" signifies inferior or exterior Truths, which are of the sensual man; (see Arcana Coelestia 2576, 5248) and "the wool which the worm eats" signifies inferior or exterior Goods, which are of the sensual man, as is evident from many passages, and also from the signification of a "sheep", from which wool is derived, and which signifies the Good of charity, n. 4169. Arcana Coelestia 9331.

9. Awake, awake, clothe yourself with strength, O arm of Jehovah! awake, as in the days of antiquity, in the generations of old. Art you not the same that smote Rahab, that wounded the dragon?

Verses 9, 10. The "arm of Jehovah "is the Lord as to the Divine Human. The "days of antiquity" [or of eternity] signify the state of the most ancient church; "eternity" is predicated of that church, because it was in the Good of love to the Lord, of which Good, because immediately from the Lord, "eternity" is predicated; the "generations of old" [or eternities] signify Goods in the ancient church hence derived. "The waters of the great deep and the depths of the sea" is the hell, where those are who are in faith separate from charity, and in a life of evil; "the waters of the sea", under which they are, signify falsities; for falsities, in the other life, appear as dense and dark clouds, and as inundations of waters; "the redeemed, who pass over", are those who are liberated by the Lord. Arcana Coelestia 8099. See also 6239, 9789.

Verse 9. Art you not the same that smote Rahab, etc. - See above, as to "Rahab", Chapter 30:7, note; and as to the "dragon", see Chapter 27:1, the Exposition.

10. Art you not the same that dried up the sea, the waters of the great deep? that made the depths of the sea a path for the redeemed to pass over?

Verses 10, 15. By "the sons of Israel, before whom the Red Sea [Suph] was dried up, so that they passed through safe", are understood all who are in Truths from Good, whom the Lord, defends, lest the falsities of evil which ascend continually from the hells should injure them. This is what is understood by "drying up the sea, the waters of the great deep", and by "making the depths thereof into a path for the redeemed to pass over"; likewise by "leading them through the abysses or depths"; for the falsities exhaled from the hells continually cling to man, consequently the hells; for, whether we speak of falsities from the hells, or of the hells themselves, it is the same thing; but the Lord continually dissipates them with those who are in Truths originating in Good from Himself. This, then, is what is signified by "drying up the sea, and leading them through the abysses." They who are in Truths grounded in Good from the Lord; are understood by the "redeemed." Apocalypse Explained 538.

11. Thus shall the ransomed of Jehovah return, and come to Zion with singing; and everlasting joy shall be upon their heads: joy and gladness shall they obtain, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.

Verse 11. Joy and gladness shall they obtain, etc. - It is said "joy and gladness" on account of the marriage of what is Good and True; for "joy" is predicated of what is Good, because from love, as it is properly of the heart and of the will; and "gladness" is predicated of Truth, because of the love thereof, for it is properly of the mind [animi] and of its thoughts; wherefore it is said, "joy of heart and gladness of mind." There are everywhere in the Word two expressions, of which one relates to what is Good and the other to what is True and this because the conjunction of what is Good and True makes heaven and the church; hence both heaven and the church are compared to a "marriage", and the Lord is said to be "the Bridegroom and the Husband", and heaven and the church "the bride and wife"; Wherefore every one who is not in that marriage is not an angel of heaven or a man of the church. The reason is, because no Good can be given with anyone except it is formed by Truths, nor can Truth be given with anyone except it live from Good; for all Truth is the form of Good, and all Good is the esse of Truth; and because one cannot be given without the other, it follows that the marriage of what is Good and True must necessarily exist with the man of the church as with an angel of heaven. All intelligence and wisdom come from this marriage, for from it there constantly spring forth Goods and Truths from which the intellect and the will are formed. Apocalypse Explained 660.

12. I, even I, am He that comforts you: who art you, that you should fear man that shall die, and the son of man that shall become as the grass?

Verse 12. By these words is signified that all things are from the Lord, and nothing from self-derived intelligence and wisdom. "Man" signifies man as to wisdom, and the "son of man" the same as to intelligence; that this latter is only science is understood by "becoming as grass." Apocalypse Explained 507.

13. And forgets Jehovah your Maker, who stretched out the heavens, and founded the earth; and fears continually every day because of the fury of the oppressor, as if he were ready to destroy? but where is the fury of the oppressor?

Verse 13. Here by the "heavens" and the "earth" is signified the church as to its internal or spiritual things, and as to its external or natural things; and by "stretching out" and "laying at the foundation thereof", is signified to establish them. Apocalypse Explained 1057.

14. He that leads out shall hasten to open; and [the captive] shall not die in the pit, and his bread shall not fail.

Verse 14. Treating concerning the Lord. His advent is understood by "He that leads out shall hasten." Liberation from the falsities of ignorance is signified by "not dying in the pit"; wherefore the same is here understood by "pit", as by the "'pit" mentioned above, (Chapter 24:22) in which were the bound, Supply of spiritual instruction and nourishment is signified by "his bread not failing"; for by "bread", is understood all spiritual food, and by spiritual "food" is meant instruction in Truths and Goods, whence come intelligence and wisdom. Apocalypse Explained 537.

15. For I am Jehovah your God, who rebukes the sea, when the waves thereof roar: Jehovah of Hosts is His name,

Verse 15. Who rebukes the sea, etc. - To "rebuke the sea" is to dissipate falsities; the "waves roaring" are noisy ratiocinations from falsities against the Truths of the Word. Apocalypse Explained 304.

16. I have put My words in your mouth: and with the shadow of My hand have I covered you: to plant the heavens, and to found the earth; and to say unto Zion, You art My people.

Verses 16, 17. Here by "planting the heavens, and founding the earth", is manifestly meant to establish the church; for this is said unto the prophet" that "the Word should be put into his mouth, and that he should be covered with the shadow of the hand, to plant the heavens, and to found or to lay the foundation of the earth", whereas the foundation of the earth cannot be laid by a prophet, but that of the church may; wherefore also it is added, "to say unto Zion, You art My people"; likewise, "Awake, awake; arise, O Jerusalem" for by "Zion" and by "Jerusalem", in the Word, is understood the church. Apocalypse Explained 1057.

17. Arouse yourself, arouse yourself; arise, O Jerusalem! who have drunk from the hand of Jehovah the cup of His fury: the dregs of the cup of trembling have you drunk, you have sucked them out.

18. There is none to lead her, of all the sons she has brought forth; neither is there any to take her by the hand, of all the sons she has brought up.

Verses 17, 18. The restoration of the church which was fallen into mere falsities of evil, is signified by "Arouse, or stir up yourself; arise, O Jerusalem I who have drunk from the hand of Jehovah the cup of His fury: the dregs of the cup of trembling have you drunk, you have sucked them out." "Jerusalem" denotes the church as to doctrine; to "awake or stir up" and to "arise" denotes the restoration thereof; to "drink the cup of fury" denotes the false, and "the dregs of the cup" mere falsities, from which are evils; and to attract them is signified by "drinking and sucking them out." "There is none to lead her, of all the sons she has brought forth; neither is there any to take her by the hand, of all the sons she has brought up", signifies that no Truths of the Word which she has learned and imbibed withdraw her from falsities; "sons" here denoting Truths. Apocalypse Explained 724.

19. These two things have befallen you; who shall bemoan you? desolation, and destruction; the famine, and the sword: by whom shall I comfort you ?

Verse 19. By "famine" is here understood the deprivation of the knowledges of Good, even until Good is no more; and by the "sword", the deprivation of the knowledges of Truth, until Truth is no more; therefore mention is also made of "devastation" and "breaking up" [confractio], the former having relation to Good being no more, and the latter to Truth being no more. Apocalypse Explained 386. See also A. O. 2799.

20. Your sons have fainted; they lie at the head of all the streets, like a wild bull in a net: they are full of the fury of Jehovah, the rebuke of your God.

Verse 20. Speaking of "Jerusalem", that is, of the church, devastated as to doctrine. By "sons" are meant those who are in Truths of doctrine; to "faint" and to "lie at the head of all the streets", signifies to be deprived of all Truth; the "head" or beginning of the streets denoting the entrance to Truth, consequently. all Truth.Apocalypse Explained 652.

As to "streets", etc., see Chapter 24:10-12; 35:8, the Exposition.

Your sons have fainted, etc. - These words signify that Truths are dissipated by falsities of every kind. Inasmuch as "sons" denote Truths, by "fainting" is signified to be dissipated; and by" lying at the head of all the streets", is signified by falsities of every kind; for the "streets" of a city signify doctrinal Truths, but here doctrinal falsities. Apocalypse Explained 724.

Like a wild bull in a net. - [The antelope or some wild animal is meant, which, being caught in a net, struggles to emancipate itself, but is not able; in like manner Truths in bondage to the natural man struggle, as it were, to come forth and to make him spiritual and free, but, in the perverse state of the church and of the unregenerate mind here depicted, are not able. Swedenborg has quoted the sentence in Apocalypse Explained 652, but has not. explained it.]

21. Wherefore hear now this, O you afflicted, and drunken, but not with wine:

22. Thus says your Lord, Jehovah, and your God, who pleads for His people, Behold, I will take from your hand the cup of trembling, the dregs of the cup of My fury; you shalt drink of it no more:

23. But I will put it into the hand of them that afflicted you; who have said to your soul, Bow down, that we may pass over: and you didst lay down your back, as the ground; and as the street, to them that passed over.

Verse 21. By "the drunken, but not with wine", are here understood those who are in falsities from ignorance of Truth. Apocalypse Explained 376 Apocalypse Explained 376[1-40].

---
Isaiah Chapter 51.

1. HEARKEN unto Me, you that pursue justice, you that seek Jehovah: look unto the rock whence you were hewn, and to the excavation of the pit, whence you were digged.

2. Look unto Abraham your father, and unto Sarah who bare you: for I called him alone, and I blessed him, and I multiplied him.

3. For Jehovah will comfort Zion: He will comfort all her waste places; and He will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of Jehovah; joy and gladness shall be found therein, thanksgiving, and the voice of singing.

4. Attend unto Me, O My people; and give ear unto Me, O My nation: for the law shall proceed from Me, and My judgment will I cause to break forth for a light to the peoples.

5. My justice is near; My salvation is gone forth; and Mine arms shall judge the peoples: the islands shall hope in Me, and on Mine arm shall they trust.

6. Lift up unto the heavens your eyes, and look unto the earth beneath: for the heavens shall vanish away like smoke; and the earth shall wax old like a garment, and its inhabitants shall die in like manner: but My salvation shall be for ever, and My justice shall not be broken.

7. Hearken unto Me, you that know justice; the people in whose heart is My law: fear you not the reproach of men, neither be you dismayed by their revilings.

8. For the moth shall eat them up like a garment, and the worm shall eat them up like wool: but My justice shall be for ever, and My salvation from generation to generation.

9. Awake, awake, clothe yourself with strength, O arm of Jehovah! awake, as in the days of antiquity, in the generations of old. Art you not the same that smote Rahab, that wounded the dragon?

10. Art you not the same that dried up the sea, the waters of the great deep? that made the depths of the sea a path for the redeemed to pass over?

11. Thus shall the ransomed of Jehovah return, and come to Zion with singing; and everlasting joy shall be upon their heads: joy and gladness shall they obtain, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.

12. I, even I, am He that comforts you: who art you, that you should fear man that shall die, and the son of man that shall become as the grass?

13. And forgets Jehovah your Maker, who stretched out the heavens, and founded the earth; and fears continually every day because of the fury of the oppressor, as if he were ready to destroy? but where is the fury of the oppressor?

14. He that leads out shall hasten to open; and [the captive] shall not die in the pit, and his bread shall not fail.

15. For I am Jehovah your God, who rebukes the sea, when the waves thereof roar: Jehovah of Hosts is His name,

16. I have put My words in your mouth: and with the shadow of My hand have I covered you: to plant the heavens, and to found the earth; and to say unto Zion, You art My people.

17. Arouse yourself, arouse yourself; arise, O Jerusalem! who have drunk from the hand of Jehovah the cup of His fury: the dregs of the cup of trembling have you drunk, you have sucked them out.

18. There is none to lead her, of all the sons she has brought forth; neither is there any to take her by the hand, of all the sons she has brought up.

19. These two things have befallen you; who shall bemoan you? desolation, and destruction; the famine, and the sword: by whom shall I comfort you ?

20. Your sons have fainted; they lie at the head of all the streets, like a wild bull in a net: they are full of the fury of Jehovah, the rebuke of your God.

21. Wherefore hear now this, O you afflicted, and drunken, but not with wine:

22. Thus says your Lord, Jehovah, and your God, who pleads for His people, Behold, I will take from your hand the cup of trembling, the dregs of the cup of My fury; you shalt drink of it no more:

23. But I will put it into the hand of them that afflicted you; who have said to your soul, Bow down, that we may pass over: and you didst lay down your back, as the ground; and as the street, to them that passed over.

From Swedenborg's Works

Main explanations:

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 51


Other references to this verse:

Arcana Coelestia 3703, 8581


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 411, 721, 840

An Invitation to the New Church 35

Scriptural Confirmations 2, 19

Other New Christian Commentary

  Stories and their meanings:


  PDF Resources


Hop to Similar Bible Verses

2 Chronicles 15:2, 4

Proverbs 9

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