Commentary

 

261 - Daily and Yearly Preparation for Heaven      

By Jonathan Rose

This video is a part of the Spirit and Life Bible Study series, whose purpose is to look at the Bible, the whole Bible, and nothing but the Bible through a Swedenborgian lens.

Title: Daily and Yearly Preparation for Heaven

Topic: Salvation

Summary: The daily sacrifices, weekly sabbaths, and three annual feasts prescribed in the Old Testament are a picture of how to prepare for heaven.

Use the reference links below to follow along in the Bible as you watch.

References:
2 Peter 2:22, 10
Numbers 28:1
Exodus 23:14, 17
Leviticus 23:1, 5, 10, 33
Deuteronomy 16:1, 9, 13-14
Luke 6:1
Acts of the Apostles 2:1; 20:16
Nehemiah 8:13-14
Ezekiel 45:21, 25
Zechariah 14:16
John 7:2, 37

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Spirit and Life Bible Study broadcast from 5/4/2016. The complete series is available at: www.spiritandlifebiblestudy.com

The Bible

 

John 7:37

King James Version         

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37 In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.

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Explanation of John 7      

By Rev. John Clowes M.A.

Explaining the Inner Meaning of John 7

Verse 7:1. That the Lord has more delight in instructing the Gentiles, who are in the good of ignorance, than in instructing those of the perverted church, who are principled in self-love, because the love of the latter is opposed to his love.

Verse 7:2. For the Lord is always seeking the implantation of good in truth, and thus liberation of the church from evil.

Verses 7:3, 4. Nevertheless he is tempted by the affections of the natural man to make an external display of his omnipotence, by which both they who are of the church, and they who are not of the church, might be led to acknowledge him.

Verses 7:5, 6. But this suggestion is not influenced by divine truth, which teaches, that the state of the Lord, when he was in the world, differed from that of natural men, because he was always advancing, as to his humanity, towards union with the divine good in himself, whereas natural men are in the present possession of their good.

Verse 7:7. And therefore natural men are not sensible of opposition from the powers of evil, whereas the Lord, as to his humanity, felt the whole weight of that opposition, in consequence of making those powers manifest.

Verses 7:8, 9. On which account natural men are enjoined the use of representative worship, but not so the Lord, since the glorification of his humanity is the end of all representations, and therefore he remains with those who receive him according to that end.

Verse 7:10. At the same time he interiorly is in the good of that representative worship, which relates to the implantation of good in truth, and thus to the glorification of his humanity, but not exteriorly.

Verses 7:11, 12, 13. By which means he excites enquiry in the church concerning himself, which enquiry leads some to justify him, and some to condemn him, yet all are afraid to speak their sentiments, being over-awed by public opinion.

Verse 7:14. That from divine good, and consequent elevation into the light of divine truth, the Lord gives instruction.

Verse 7:15. The interior source of which instruction cannot be apprehended by the natural man.

Verse 7:16. Until he is taught, that the truth proceeding from the Lord's humanity is not of the humanity only, but of the divine good dwelling in it, and one with it.

Verse 7:17. And that therefore all, who live in conformity with that good, will be instructed as to the origin of truth.

Verse 7:18. Since self-love always gives birth to false principles, whilst divine and heavenly love gives birth to principles of truth and justice.

Verses 7:19, 20. Hence comes the Divine Word, which still is not obeyed, and therefore the Lord in his Divine Humanity is rejected, and his operation imputed to infernal agency, whilst they who reject him are not aware of the crime which they are committing.

Verses 7:21, 22, 23. Therefore they are taught, that since the Lord in his Divine Humanity had manifested, by their own confession, an operation more than human; and since on this account the Word, both in the Israelitish church, and in the ancient church, required purification from unclean loves, which requirement they fulfilled, as to its external representation, therefore out of regard to the Word, they ought not to oppose that humanity in its purpose of communicating spiritual life, which was represented by the Sabbath.

Verse 7:24. Neither ought they to form their judgement from truth alone, but from truth in conjunction with its good.

Verses 7:25, 26. That the opposition of the perverted church to the Lord in his Divine Humanity, was known to those who were principled in the doctrine of truth, and who thus, seeing the power of the divine truth over its adversaries, are led to enquire how far they, who are principled in knowledges, believe in that humanity.

Verse 7:27. Yet they are perplexed about the origin of that humanity, because they could not discern his divinity.

Verse 7:28. Therefore they are taught that the humanity was known, and also its origin, since it is not self-derived, but from the invisible and unknown divinity.

Verse 7:29. Yet the humanity knows the divinity, because it proceeds from the divinity.

Verse 7:30. That this doctrine excites violent opposition in will, but not in act, being restrained for the present by the Lord's divine providence.

Verse 7:31. Nevertheless, with those who are principled in truth, it excites faith in the Lord's humanity, the operation of which humanity is exalted by them above every other operation.

Verses 7:32, 33, 34. But this faith so excited tends only to increase the spirit of opposition amongst those of the perverted church, who are principled in self-love, and therefore they are taught, that the Lord's humanity will certainly be united with his divinity, on which occasion he cannot be approached by those who merely speculate about him, because they are destitute of the love and life in which he dwells.

Verses 7:35, 36. Still they who are principled in self-love are not able to comprehend what is meant by the union of the Lord's humanity with his divinity.

Verses 7:37, 38, 39. Therefore they are further instructed, that if they are desirous of attaining the knowledge of truth, they must receive from the Lord in his Divine Humanity the truths of doctrine and their faith, since hence comes spiritual intelligence of divine truth from the Lord, inasmuch as to impart such intelligence is the great purpose of the glorification of the Lord's humanity.

Verse 39, latter part. For spiritual intelligence of divine truth cannot be given but from divinity and humanity united in the one divine person of the Lord.

Verses 7:40, 41, 42, 43. That in consequence of this instruction, they, who are principled in truth, are led to acknowledge the Lord's humanity as the all of doctrine, and the all of truth, whilst others are perplexed about the divine origin of that humanity as taught in the Word.

Verse 7:44. Hence inclination is inwardly cherished to do violence to that humanity, but the power to do it is checked.

Verses 7:45, 46. And on enquiry how, it was checked, it is discovered, that the truth proceeding from that humanity was more than human, so that the simple could not resist it.

Verses 7:47, 48, 49. Therefore they, who are blinded by self-love, and who fancy themselves qualified by their superior learning to decide on what is true, or otherwise, condemn the simple as ignorant of the truth.

Verse 50, 51. Yet their own learning suggests the consideration that no one ought to be condemned, until it be first known whether he be guilty, and what his guilt is.

Verses 7:52, 53. But this consideration is over-ruled, as not applicable to the Lord's humanity and the doctrine which he taught, since no teacher of truth can be born out of the church, therefore all abide in their own ruling love and persuasions.

From Swedenborg's Works

Explanations or references:

Arcana Coelestia 2702, 3069, 4735, 5323, 5915, 8568, 9818, ...

Apocalypse Revealed 50, 409, 553, 956

Doctrine of the Lord 32, 51

The Doctrine of the New Jerusalem Regarding the Sacred Scripture 2

Doctrine of Life 32

True Christian Religion 107, 190, 337, 358, 377


References from Swedenborg's drafts, indexes & diaries:

Apocalypse Explained 71, 183, 518, 622, 815

Marriage 107

Related New Christian Commentary

  Stories and their meanings:



Hop to Similar Bible Verses

Leviticus 23:36

Numbers 29:35

Isaiah 33:16, 55:1

Bible Word Meanings

come
Coming (Gen. 41:14) denotes communication by influx.

Resources for parents and teachers

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 Justice
Worship Talk | Ages 7 - 14

 Quotes: Looking for the Good in Others
Teaching Support | Ages over 15

 Tolerance and Judgment
Loving the neighbor is intending and doing good to all, but wisely loving others takes a variety of forms depending on others' actions.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 11 - 17

 True Friendship
How are we to react to the faults of others? New Church teachings say we should have a person's good in mind particularly when we deal with their bad side.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 11 - 17

 Who Is Jesus?
Jesus’ life unfolded according a Divine plan known only to Him. People wrestled with who He was. He made bold claims and challenged religious leaders. How do we see Jesus? In what ways does He challenge us?
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 11 - 17

The Bible

 

Isaiah 33:16

King James Version         

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16 He shall dwell on high: his place of defence shall be the munitions of rocks: bread shall be given him; his waters shall be sure.

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Explanation of Isaiah 33      

By Rev. John H. Smithson

THE EXPLANATION of Isaiah Chapter 33

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

1. WOE unto you, you spoiler, who has not been spoiled; and who dealest treacherously, and they have not dealt treacherously with you! when you shalt cease to spoil, you shalt be spoiled; and when you shalt make an end to deal treacherously, they shall deal treacherously with you.

VERSE 1. There are two kinds of "desolation" or of "devastation", or of" spoiling", mentioned in the Word. One is predicated of the regenerate, which is apparent only; the other of the unregenerate or of the evil, and is absolute. The man who is born within the church, from earliest childhood learns out of the Word, and from the doctrinals of the church, what the Truth of faith is, and also what the Good of charity is; but when he becomes adult, he begins either to confirm in himself, or to deny in himself, the Truths of faith which he had learnt, for he then looks at them with his own proper sight; thereby he causes them either to be appropriated to himself, or to be rejected: for nothing can be appropriated to anyone which is not acknowledged from his own proper intuition, that is, which he does not know from himself, not from another, to be so. The Truths, therefore, which he had imbibed from childhood, could not enter further into his life than to the first entrance, from which they may be admitted more interiorly, or else be cast forth abroad. With those who are regenerated, that is, who the Lord foresees will suffer themselves to be regenerated, those Truths are exceedingly multiplied, for all such are in the affection of knowing Truths, but when they accede nearer to the very act of regeneration, they are, as it were, deprived of those Truths, which are then drawn inwards, and in this case the man appears in desolaiion; nevertheless those Truths are successively remitted into the natural principle, and are there conjoined with Good, during man's regeneration. But with those who are not regenerated, that is, who the Lord foresees will not suffer themselves to be regenerated, Truths indeed are wont to be multiplied, inasmuch as they are in the affection of knowing such things for the sake of reputation, honour, and gain; but when they come to maturer age, and submit those Truths to their own proper sight, in this case they either do not believe, or they deny, or turn them into falsities; thus Truths with such are not drawn inwards, but are cast forth abroad, yet still they remain in the memory for the sake of ends in the world without life. This state is also called "desolation" or " devastation", but it differs from the former in that the desolation of the former state is apparent, whereas the desolation of this state is absolute: for in the former state man is not deprived of Truths, but in this latter state he is altogether deprived of them. These two kinds of "desolation" and of "devastation" are often mentioned in the Word. (See Chapter 49:17, 18, 19, the Exposition.) How the case is with "desolation", is evident from those who are in desolation in the other life. They are vexed by evil spirits and genii, who infuse persuasions of what is evil and false, insomuch that they are almost overflooded, in consequence of which Truths do not appear; but as the time of desolation comes to an end, they are illustrated by light from heaven, and thus the evil spirits and genii are driven away everyone into his own hell, where they undergo punishments. In Isaiah it is said- "Woe unto you, you spoiler; who has not been spoiled, and who dealest treacherously", etc.; (Isaiah 33:1) by which is meant that the "spoiler", or those [the evil spirits] who devastate and cause devastation to the good, will, in their turn, be devastated of everything true and good in the external which they had assumed, and be cast into hell; hence it is that a "woe" is denounced against them. Arcana Coelestia 5376.

To "deal treacherously", or perfidiously; is to act against revealed Truths.. Apocalypse Explained 710. See above, Chapter 21:2, the Exposition.

2. O Jehovah, have mercy on us; we have waited for You: be You their arm every morning; even our salvation in the time of distress.

Verse 2. We often read of "morning" in the Word, and it has a various signification according to the series of things treated of in the internal sense; in the supreme sense it signifies the Lord, and also His coning; by it, in the internal sense, is signified His kingdom and church, and their state of peace; it signifies, moreover, the first state of a New Church, and also a state of love, likewise a state of illustration, consequently a state of intelligence and wisdom, find also a state of conjunction of Good and Truth, which is when the internal man is conjoined to the external. The ground and reason why "morning" has such various significations is, because in the suprerne sense it signifles the Divine Human of the Lord; and hence it likewise signifies all those things which proceed from Him, so that He Himself is there. The reason why the Divine Human of the Lord in the supreme sense is understood by "morning" is, because the Lord is the Sun of the angelic heaven, and the Sun of that heaven does not make a progression from morning to evening, or from rising to setting, as the sun of the world does to appearances but it remains constant in its place, in front above the heavens; hence it is that it is always in the morninq, and never in the evening; and inasmuch as all intelligence and wisdom which the angels possess, exists with them from the Lord as a Sun, therefore also their state of love, and their state of wisdom and intelligence, and, in general, their state of illustration, is signified by "morning"; for those things proceed from the Lord as a Sun, and what proceeds from Hirn is Himself, for from the Divine nothing but what is Divine proceeds, and everything Divine is Himself. That the Lord is the Sun of the angelic heaven, and that from Him, as a Sun, exists all love, wisdom, and intelligence, and, in general, all illustration as to divine Truths, from which wisdom is derived, may be seen in the work concerning Heaven and Hell 116-125, 126-143, 155, 156. Apocalypse Explained 179.

Be You their arm, every morning. - That the "hands", the "arms", and the "shoulders" correspond to power in the Grand Man, is because the forces and powers of the whole body, and of all its viscera, relate to those members, for the body exercises its powers by the arms and the hands. Hence also it is that, in the Word, powers are signified :by the "'hands", the "arms", and the "shoulders", as might be proved by many passages, as in Isaiah:

"Be You their arm every morning. (See also Isaiah 40:10; 44:12; 51:5) Arcana Coelestia 4933. See also above, Chapter 5:25, the Exposition.

3. At the voice of the tumult the peoples flee; at the lifting up of Yourself the nations are scattered.

Verse 3. "Peoples" here signify falsities, and "nations" evils, which, at the time of Judgment, are said "to flee and to be scattered." Apocalypse Explained 331.

4. And your spoil shall be gathered, as the caterpillar gathereth: as the running to and fro of locusts, so shall he run upon it.

Verse 4. The false in extremes, or the most dense false, is here signified [by the "caterpillar" and] by the "locusts", as is evident from many passages in the Word, especially from the Apocalypse, Chapter ix., "where" locusts" were seen ascending from the bottomless pit. The "locust" specifically signifies the sensual principle, which is the ultimate of the life of man, or the ultimate in which terminates and upon which rests the understanding of man. Hence this ultimate is like a basis upon which interior or superior principles, which belong to the will and to the understanding of man, rest as upon their foundation. In like manner the interior and superior things of the Word, which are called spiritual and celestial, since they must have a foundation upon which they can stand and subsist, wherefore the literal sense of the Word, which is its ultimate and its basis, is natural and sensual, and is also, in a good sense, understood by the "locust"; consequently the Good and Truth of the literal sense is understood by "locusts." Hence it was that John the Baptist "fed upon locusts", (Matthew 3:4; Mark 1:6) and that the, people of Israel were "permitted to eat them." (Leviticus 11:20-22) Apocalypse Explained 543.

5. Jehovah is exalted; yea, He dwells on high: He has filled Zion with judgment and justice.

Verse 5. What is Divine is signified by what is "exalted" and "high"; hence it is that Jehovah, or the Lord, is said "to be exalted, and to dwell on high." See also Isaiah 57:15, and many other passages. Arcana Coelestia 8153.

6. And wisdom and knowledge shall be the stability of your times, the strength of [your] salvations: the fear of Jehovah, this shall be his treasure.

Verse 6. "Wisdom" and "knowledge" signify the Good of faith conjoined with its Truth. The fear of Jehovah, a treasure", is the Good of love. Arcana Coelestia 2826.

7. Behold, the mighty men shall cry without: the angels of peace shall weep bitterly [saying],

Verses 7, 8. Inasmuch as peace is of the Lord, and in heaven from Him, therefore the angels are there called "the angels of peace:" and as there is no peace to those upon earth who are in evils and falsities thence derived, therefore it is said that "they weep bitterly [saying], The highways are devastated; the wayfaring man ceases"; "paths" and "ways" signifying the goods of life and truths of faith; wherefore "the highways being devastated" slgnify the goods of life being no more, and "the wayfaring man having ceased." signifies the same with respect to the truths of faith. A.. Apocalypse Explained 365.

8. The highways are devastated; the wayfaring man ceases: he has broken the covenant; he has despised the cities; he regards no man,

Verse 8. The devastation of the church is here treated of. "The highways are devastated, the wayfaring man ceases", signifies that the goods and truths which lead to heaven were no more; "he has broken the covenant", signifies that there was no conjunction with the Lord; "he has despised the cities", denotes that they refuse doctrine; "he regards no man", signifies that they make no account of wisdom. Apocalypse Explained 280.

Verses 8, 9. To "despise the cities", denotes to despise truths of doctrine; to "regard no man", is not to consider Truth and Good. "The earth mourns, it langnisheth", is the church as to Good; "Lebanon is ashamed, it withers", is the church as to Truth. Apocalypse Explained 223.

9. The earth mourns, it languishes: Lebanon is ashamed, it withers: Sharon is become like a desert; and Bashan and Carmel shake off [their leaves].

Verse 9. Where also the "earth" denotes the church, which is said to "mourn" and to "languish" when falsities begin to be apprehended and acknowledged for Truths, wherefore it is said "Lebanon is ashamed, it withers"; by "Lebanon" is signified the same as by the "cedar", namely, the Truth of the church. Apocalypse Explained 304.

Sharon is become like a desert. - "Sharon" is the internal of the celestial church. Arcana Coelestia 10609.

Basham and Carmel, etc. - "Bashan" is the good of the natural principle. (Arcana Coelestia 3923)

But what it means, in a bad sense, and what the "Oaks of Bashan " signify, see Chapter 2:12-17, the Exposition.

10. Now will I arise, says Jehovah; now will I lift up Myself; now will I be exalted.

Verses 10, [The Lord's rising to Judgment is here described, and, instead of producing the fruits represented by "Sharon", "Bashan", and "Carmel", which denote the celestial, spiritual, and natural good of the church, which the wicked, or the "hypocrites", had assumed in the external whilst they lived in the world, they will now" conceive chaff, and bring forth stubble", which are the fallacies and falsities conjoined with the evils in their internal, which at Judgment are brought forth to their condemnation.]

11. You shall conceive chaff; you shall bring forth stubble: as to your spirit, fire shall consume you.

Verse 11. "The spirit whichfire shall consume" signifies the understanding of Truth, thus intelligence; "fire" is lust or concupiscence which, because it is from evil, destroys. Arcana Coelestia 9818. See also True Christian Religion 156.

Verses 11, 12, 14. As to your spirit, fire shall consume you" etc.Where "fire", in the Word, is predicated of the evil and of the hells, it signifies the love of self and of the world, and thence every evil affection and cupidity which torment the wicked after death in hell. The reason of this opposite signification of "fire" is, because the Divine Love, when it descends out of heaven, and falls into the societies where the evil are, is turned into a love contrary to the Divine Love, and thence into various burnings of concupiscences and cupidities, and thus into evils of every kind; and inasmuch as evils carry with them the punishments of evil, hence arise their torments from this conversion of the Divine Love into infernal love with the evil. The hells, where the love of self and of the world, and thence hatred and revenge, have rule, appear as in a flaming fire, both within and round about, although no fire is perceived by the diabolic crew who are in those hells; from these loves, also, the diabolic crew themselves, who are in such hells, appear with their faces inflamed and reddening as from fire. Hence may appear the signification of "fire" in the above passage, and in the following:

"Wickedness burns like a fire: the brier and the thorn it shall consume, and it shall kindle the thicket of the wood; and they shall mount up in a volume of smoke, And the people shall be as food for the fire: a man shall not spare his brother." (Isaiah 9:18, 19)

And Again,

"All the people shall be for burning, even food for the fire." (Isaiah 9:5) Apocalypse Explained 504.

12. And the peoples shall be as the burnings of lime; as the thorns are cut up, and burned in the fire.

Verse 12. "Thorns burned in the fire" signify falsities, which catch fire and consume Goods and Truths. Arcana Coelestia 9144.

As to what is understood by "thorns" and "briers", see above, Chapter 7:23, 24, 25, the Exposition.

["Burnings of lime" signify evils of life, and "thorns" are falsities conjoined with those evils.]

13. Hear, O you that are afar off, what I have done; and acknowledge, O you that are near, My power.

14. The sinners in Zion are afraid; terror has seized the hypocrites. Who among us can abide this devouring fire? who among us can abide these everlasting burnings?

Verse 13. What is meant by being "far off" and "near", see Chapter 5:26, 28; also Chapter 34:1, the Exposition.

15. He who walks in justice, and speaks right things; who despises the gain of oppressions; who shakes his hands from holding a bribe; who stoppeth his ear from the hearing of bloodshed; who shutteth his eyes from seeing evil:

16. He shall dwell in the high places; the strongholds of the rocks shall be his place of defence: his bread shall be given him; his waters shall be sure.

Verses 15, 17. To "walk in justice" and to "speak right things", signifies to live in the Good of love and charity, and to think and perceive Truths; for to "walk" signifies to live, "justice" is predicated of Good, and "right things" of Truth. To "see the King in His beauty", signifies to attain to wisdom; for "king" denotes Truth from Good, and "beauty" its wisdom, forasmuch as in wisdom Divine Truth is in its beautiful form. "They shall behold the land far extended", signifies the extension of wisdom into heaven; for "land" or the "earth" signifies the church and also heaven, and "far extended" signifies extension there. Apocalypse Explained 453.

Who shutteth his eyes from seeing evil: thine eyes shall see the King in His beauty. - To "shut the eyes from seeing evil", denotes not to admit evil into the thought. That "the eyes should see the King in His beauty", signifies that they should understand Truth in its own light with pleasantness; for by the "King" in this passage is not understood any king, but Truth, as may be seen above, n. 31. Apocalypse Explained 152.

17. Thine eyes shall see the King in His beauty: they shall behold the land far extended.

Verse 17. They shall behold the land far extended, etc. - To "see the King in His beauty", denotes genuine Truth which is from the Lord; to "behold the land far extended" [or of far distances], signifies the extension of wisdom and intelligence. Apocalypse Explained 304.

18. Thine heart shall meditate terror. Where is the scribe ? where is the weigher? where is he that numbered the towers?

19. You shalt not see a fierce people, a people of a deep speech, which you couldst not hear; and of a barbarous tongue of no understanding.

Verses 18, 19. The above words signify remembrance of the state of the church when there is no intelligence nor wisdom, and when interior Truths are falsified. "Terror" denotes that state; "scribe" means intelligence; the "weigher" denotes wisdom; "towers" denote interior Truths; and to destroy the quality thereof by falsifications is here signified by "numbering" them. "You shalt not see a fierce [or obstinate] people", signifies those who are in the falsities of evil, and, abstractedly, those falsities; "a people of a deep speech", signifies falsities of doctrine confirmed until they appear as Truths; "speech" denoting the Truth of doctrine, but, in the present case, the false not visible. Apocalypse Explained 453.

Verse 18. Where is he that numbered the towers ?-As to the signification of "numbering", in a bad sense, see Chapter 22:10, the Exposition.

20. Look unto Zion, the city of our appointed feasts: thine eyes shall behold Jerusalem, a quiet habitation, a tabernacle that shall not be taken down: whose stakes shall not be removed for ever, and of whose cords none shall be plucked up.

21. But Jehovah shall be magnificent unto us, a place of rivers and of streams, and of broad spaces, in which no ship with oars shall pass, neither shall any magnificent vessel go through.

Verse 20. By " Zion" is not understood Zion, nor by "Jerusalem " Jerusalem, but heaven and the church, as to the Good of Love and the Truth of Doctrine. These are "a quiet habitation", and "a tabernacle which shall not be taken down" or dissipated. By "the stakes that shall not be removed", is signified confirmation by divine Truths; and by "the cords which shall not be plucked up [or rent asunder]", is signified conjunction by divine Good. Apocalypse Explained 709.

A tabernacle that shull not be taken down, etc. - The reason why a "tabernacle" signifies the church as to doctrine and worship, is, because they who were of the church in the most ancient times dwelt in tabernacles and tents, with which also they journeyed; for in those times they were mostly feeders of sheep, and the father of the family taught those who were descended from his house the precepts of charity, and thence the life of love, in tabernacles, as was the case afterwards, in temples, Hence the "tabernacle" signified the same as the "house of God", that is, the worship of God according to doctrine, consequently also the church, inasmuch as the church is a church from a life according to doctrine, and a life according to doctrine is worship. Inasmuch as those most ancient people, with whom the church was, adored God under a human form, ' and under a human form is the Lord, they consequently worshipped Him; hence their church was a celestial church, which is distinguished from the spiritual church in this, that the celestial church, is in love to the Lord and in worship from that love, and the spiritual church is in love towards the neighbour and in worship from that love; and whereas such was the quality of the church with the most ancient people, and the doctrine of love to the Lord was taught in their tabernacles, and, hence tabernacles were loved by the Lord above temples, therefore, by command of the Lord on Mount Sinai, a tabernacle was built, in which the Israelitish nation might perform holy worship; and afterwards, in memory of this most holy worship, the "feast of tabernacles" was instituted. Apocalypse Explained 799.

Verses 20, 21. By "Zion and Jerusalem." is understood the church of the Lord; by "Zion" the church where the Good of love is the ruling principle, and by "Jerusalem" the church where the Truth of doctrine is the ruling principle. Jehovah is called "magnificent" when the men of the church are of such a nature and quality as to be receptive of divine Good and Truth from the Lord; and Zion and Jerusalem are called "a place of rivers and of streams, and of broad spaces", when all their intelligence and wisdom, and Good and Truth, are from the Lord; "rivers" denoting wisdom, "streams" intelligence, and the "broad spaces" Truths from Good in multitude and extension. "No ship wth oars shall pass, neither shall any magnificent vessel go through", signifies that in the church there shall be no lntelhgence and wisdom from the proprlum; for the "ship with oars" is intelligence from the proprium, because it is moved by men by means of oars; and the "magnificent vessel" is wisdom from the proprium, because man, by reason of that wisdom, glories and is proud, for a "ship", when it is going along and paesmg through the sea, being then in its course, carrying its wealth, signifies intelligence and wisdom. That a ship is not here [literally] understood, is evident, for it is said concerning Zion and Jerusalem. Apocalypse Explained 514.

As to the signification of "ships", and especially of the "ships of Tarshish", see above, Chapter 23:1-3, the Exposition.

22. For Jehovah is our Judge; Jehovah is our Lawgiver; Jehovah is our King: He shall save us.

Verse 22. The Lord is a "Judge", because He acts from Good; He is a "Lawgiver" or "Legislator", because He acts from Truth by that Good; and He is a "King", because He acts from Truth; thus these things follow in order. Arcana Coelestia 6372.

23. Your cords are loosed; they could not well strengthen their mast; they could not spread the sail: then is the prey of a great spoil divided; the lame take the prey.

Verse 23. That "cords" and "ropes" signify coujunction mediums, see Chap: Isaiah 5:18, the Exposition. [When Truths are separated from Good, as in this verse, they have no longer any power to support the doctrine (ship) In which the mind of man can trust for salvation; see verse 20, where "cords" are used in a good sense.]

The lame take the prey. - By the "lame", in the Word, are signified [In a bad sense] those who are in no good, and hence in no truth as in Isaiah 33:23. In the original tongue, "to be lame" is expressed by one term, and "to halt" by another. By the "lame", in a proper sense, are signified those who are In natural good, into which spiritual truths cannot flow, on account of the natural appearances and fallacies of the senses; and, in the opposite sense, those who are in no natural good, but in evil, which entirely prevents the influx of spiritual Truth. But by "halting", in a proper sense, are signified those who are in natural good in which common [or general] truths are admitted, but not particular and singular truths, because of ignorance; but, in the opposite sense, those who are in evil, and thus who do not even admit general truths. Arcana Coelestia 4302.

[By the "prey" which the lame are here said to take is signified the literal sense, the spoil of the Assyrian army, which, as it signified falsified and perverted truths and adulterated goods, was taken, .according to the above extract, by the "lame" in a bad sense' that is appropriated to the evil when separated at the time of Judgment from the good, and cast into hell, which was signified by the total destruction of the Assyrian army, as recorded in Chapter Isaiah 37:36.]

24. And the inhabitant shall not say, I am sick: the people that dwell therein shall be forgiven their iniquity.

Verse 24. As to what is signified by "sickness", "diseases", "wounds", "bruises" and "sores" when mentioned in the Word, see Chapter 1:6, 7, the Exposition.

The people that dwell therein shall be forgiven their iniquity. - It is commonly supposed that when sins are remitted, they, are wiped away or washed off as filth is by water; but sins are not wiped Rway, but removed, that is, man is withheld from them when he is kept in good by the Lord; and, when this is the case, it appears to him as if he were without his sins, thus as if they were wiped away. And, so far as man is reformed, so far he is capable of being kept in good. How this reformation is effected, will be shown in the following chapter on Regeneration. He who supposes that sins are remitted in any other way is greatly deceived. The evidences that accompany the remission, that is, the removal, of sins, are the following. They whose sins are remitted experience a delight in worshipping God for His own sake, and in serving the neighbour for the sake of the neighbour; in doing good for the sake of good, and in speaking truth for the sake of truth. Such persons disclaim all merit in the exercise of their charity and faith; they are utterly averse to all evils, as enmity, hatred, revenge, adultery; and not only do they shun them, but they abhor the very thought of them connected with any intention. But the evidences that sins are not remitted, or removed, are these. They whose sins are not remitted do not worship God for His own sake, or serve the neighbour for his own sake; thus they do not do good and speak truth for the sake of good and truth, but for the sake of themselves and the world. They claim merit on account of their deeds; they perceive nothing undelightful in evils, such as enmity, hatred, revenge, and adultery; and, influenced with these lusts, they cherish the thought of them in all licentiousness. The New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine 166, 167.

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Isaiah Chapter 33

1. WOE unto you, you spoiler, who has not been spoiled; and who dealest treacherously, and they have not dealt treacherously with you! when you shalt cease to spoil, you shalt be spoiled; and when you shalt make an end to deal treacherously, they shall deal treacherously with you.

2. O Jehovah, have mercy on us; we have waited for You: be You their arm every morning; even our salvation in the time of distress.

3. At the voice of the tumult the peoples flee; at the lifting up of Yourself the nations are scattered.

4. And your spoil shall be gathered, as the caterpillar gathereth: as the running to and fro of locusts, so shall he run upon it.

5. Jehovah is exalted; yea, He dwelleth on high: He has filled Zion with judgment and justice.

6. And wisdom and knowledge shall be the stability of your times, the strength of [your] salvations: the fear of Jehovah, this shall be his treasure.

7. Behold, the mighty men shall cry without: the angels of peace shall weep bitterly [saying],

8. The highways are devastated; the wayfaring man ceases: he has broken the covenant; he has despised the cities; he regards no man,

9. The earth mourns, it languishes: Lebanon is ashamed, it withers: Sharon is become like a desert; and Bashan and Carmel shake off [their leaves].

10. Now will I arise, says Jehovah; now will I lift up Myself; now will I be exalted.

11. You shall conceive chaff; you shall bring forth stubble: as to your spirit, fire shall consume you.

12. And the peoples shall be as the burnings of lime; as the thorns are cut up, and burned in the fire.

13. Hear, O you that are afar off, what I have done; and acknowledge, O you that are near, My power.

14. The sinners in Zion are afraid; terror has seized the hypocrites. Who among us can abide this devouring fire? who among us can abide these everlasting burnings?

15. He who walks in justice, and speaks right things; who despises the gain of oppressions; who shakes his hands from holding a bribe; who stoppeth his ear from the hearing of bloodshed; who shutteth his eyes from seeing evil:

16. He shall dwell in the high places; the strongholds of the rocks shall be his place of defence: his bread shall be given him; his waters shall be sure.

17. Thine eyes shall see the King in His beauty: they shall behold the land far extended.

18. Thine heart shall meditate terror. Where is the scribe ? where is the weigher? where is he that numbered the towers?

19. You shalt not see a fierce people, a people of a deep speech, which you couldst not hear; and of a barbarous tongue of no understanding.

20. Look unto Zion, the city of our appointed feasts: thine eyes shall behold Jerusalem, a quiet habitation, a tabernacle that shall not be taken down: whose stakes shall not be removed for ever, and of whose cords none shall be plucked up.

21. But Jehovah shall be magnificent unto us, a place of rivers and of streams, and of broad spaces, in which no ship with oars shall pass, neither shall any magnificent vessel go through.

22. For Jehovah is our Judge; Jehovah is our Lawgiver; Jehovah is our King: He shall save us.

23. Your cords are loosed; they could not well strengthen their mast; they could not spread the sail: then is the prey of a great spoil divided; the lame take the prey.

24. And the inhabitant shall not say, I am sick: the people that dwell therein shall be forgiven their iniquity.

From Swedenborg's Works

Main explanations:

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 33


Other references to this verse:

Arcana Coelestia 2165, 2702, 3869

Apocalypse Revealed 50

Doctrine of Life 84


References from Swedenborg's drafts, indexes & diaries:

Apocalypse Explained 71

Scriptural Confirmations 4, 43

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Hop to Similar Bible Verses

Deuteronomy 33:29

Psalms 62:7

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Bible Word Meanings

high
'Height' signifies what is inward, and also heaven.

rocks
'Rocks' signify the good and truth of faith.

bread
The word “bread” is used two ways in the Bible. In some cases it means actual bread; in others it stands for food in general....

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...

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 Picturing the Lord as Our King
Make a picture of the Lord as King with a beautiful crown on His head and shining white garments. 
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 Prayers for Children: The Lord Our King
Activity | Ages 7 - 14

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 The Lord Is the King of Kings
Color picture of the Lord our King on a white horse.
Picture | Ages up to 14

 The Promise of the King
Worship Talk | Ages 7 - 14


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