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Arcana Coelestia #2159

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2159. That 'servant' means the Lord's human before it was made Divine becomes clear from many places in the Prophets. The reason, which has been given frequently already, is this: The Lord's human, before He cast it off and made it Divine, was nothing else than a servant. His human came from the mother and was for that reason imperfect. From her it possessed a hereditary element which He overcame and utterly cast aside by means of the conflicts brought about by temptations. He did so even to the point when nothing was left of the imperfect and hereditary element received from the mother, indeed until at length nothing whatever from the mother remained. He cast off that which came from the mother so completely that He was no longer her son, as He also Himself declares in Mark,

They said to Jesus, Behold, Your mother and Your brothers are outside, asking for You. And He answered them. saying, Who is My mother, or My brothers? And looking around on those who were sitting around Him He said, Behold My mother and My brothers! For whoever does the will of God is My brother, and My sister, and My mother. Mark 3:32-35; Matthew 12:46-50; Luke 8:20-21.

(References: Matthew 12:46-49)


[2] Once He had cast off this human He put on the Divine Human, by virtue of which He called Himself the Son of Man, as may be seen many times in the New Testament Word, and also the Son of God. By 'the Son of Man' He meant truth itself and by 'the Son of God' good itself which belonged to His Human Essence once this had been made Divine. The former state was that of the Lord's humiliation but the latter that of His glorification, which has been dealt with already in 1999.

[3] In the former state, namely the state of humiliation, when He still had the imperfect human with Him, He worshipped Jehovah as one other than Himself, and was indeed like a servant, for the imperfect human is by comparison nothing else. In the Word also therefore that human is referred to as 'a servant', as in Isaiah,

I will protect this city to save it for My own sake and for the sake of David My servant. Isaiah 37:35.

This refers to the Assyrians in whose camp an angel slew a hundred and eighty-five thousand. 'David' stands for the Lord who, because He is yet to come, is, as regards the human, called 'a servant'. That 'David' in the Word stands for the Lord, see 1888.

[4] In the same prophet,

Behold, My servant on whom I will lean, My chosen [in whom] My soul is well pleased. I have put My spirit upon him; he will bring forth judgement to the nations. Isaiah 42:1.

This is a plain reference to the Lord, of whom, when He was in the human, the expressions 'servant' and 'chosen one' are used. In the same prophet,

Who is blind but My servant, and deaf as My angel 1 whom I will send? Who is blind as the perfect one, and blind as the servant or Jehovah? Isaiah 42:19.

This too is a reference to the Lord, of whom in a similar way, when He was in the human, the expressions 'servant' and 'angel' are used.

[5] In the same prophet,

You are My witnesses, said Jehovah, and My servant whom I have chosen, that you may know and believe Me, and understand that I am He. Isaiah 43:10.

In the same prophet,

[Then] said Jehovah who formed me from the womb, to be a servant to Him, to bring back Jacob to Him, and that Israel might be gathered to Him - He said, It is a light thing that you should be a servant to Me to raise up the tribes of Jacob. I have given you as a light of the nations, to be My salvation right to the ends of the earth. Isaiah 49:5-6.

This too is a plain reference to the Lord and to His human before it was made 'a light of the nations' and 'a salvation to the ends of the earth'. In the same prophet,

Who among you fears Jehovah, hearkens to the voice of His servant who walks in darkness and has no brightness? Let him trust in the name of Jehovah and lean on his God. Isaiah 50:10.

'Servant' again stands for the Lord's human. His teaching of the way of truth, while He was in that Human, is meant by 'the voice of Jehovah's servant'.

[6] In the same prophet,

Jehovah goes before you, and the God of Israel gathers you up. Behold, My servant will deal wisely; he will be raised up and exalted and lifted up very high. Isaiah 52:12-13.

'Servant' is clearly used in reference to the Lord when He was in the human, because it is said of Him that He will be raised up, exalted, and lifted up. In the same prophet,

He had no form and no honour. We saw him, but there was no beauty in him. He was despised, a man of sorrows, acquainted with sickness. Jehovah was willing to bruise him and make him imperfect. If he makes his soul guilt he will see his seed he will prolong his days, and the will of Jehovah will prosper by his hand. He will see [the fruit of] the travail of his soul and be satisfied; by his knowledge will the righteous one My servant make many righteous; and He has borne their iniquities. Isaiah 53:2-3, 10-11.

Here reference is openly made, as in the whole of this chapter, to the Lord's state of humiliation. The fact that in that state He was in the imperfect human is also declared, namely in the statements that He was 'a man of sorrows, acquainted with grief', 'was made imperfect', and experienced 'the travail of his soul', besides many other statements, in which state He is referred to as 'a servant'.

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Footnotes:

1. or messenger

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(References: Genesis 18:3)

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Arcana Coelestia 2265, 2320, 2658, 3025, 3036, 3318, 3703, 3704, 4563, 4809, 5045, 6984, 8281, 8649, 9309, 9315, 9528

Heaven and Hell 86

The New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine 201, 300, 302, 310


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 32, 242

Other New Christian Commentary

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

The Bible

 

Isaiah 43:10

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10 Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.

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Explanation of Isaiah 43      

By Rev. John H. Smithson

THE EXPLANATION of Isaiah Chapter 43

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

1. BUT now, thus says Jehovah, your Creator, O Jacob, and your Former, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed you, I have called you by your name; you art Mine.

VERSE 1. That to "redeem" signifies to liberate from hell, and to claim and conjoin to Himself so that they may be His, is evident, for it is said, "I have redeemed you, I have called you by your name : you art Mine"; and inasmuch as this is effected by reformation and regeneration from the Lord, it is therefore said "Jehovah your Creator, O Jacob, and your Former, O Israel." He is here called "Creator", because to "create" in the Word signifies to reqenerate, as may be seen above. n. 294. "Jacob" and " Israel" signify those who are of the church and who are in Truths from Good. Apocalypse Explained 328.

As to the signification of "fear", as predicated both of the spiritual and of the natural man, see Chapter 11:3, the Exposition.

Verses 1, 6, 7. I have redeemed you, I have called you by your name; you art Mine. Bring My sons from afar, and My daughters from the ends of the earth, etc. - The subject here treated of is concerning the establishment of the church among the nations. From their reformation Jehovah is called "Creator and Former", wherefore it is said "I have redeemed you, I have called you by your name: you art Mine." "Bring My sons from afar, and My daughters from the ends of the earth", signifies the nations which are out of the church, which receive the Truths and Goods of the church from the Lord; "afar off" and the "ends of the earth" denoting those who are out of the church; the "earth" is the church; "sons" are those who receive Truths, and "daughters" those who receive Goods. These are said to he "created, formed, and made to glory"; "glory" is the divine Truth which they receive. Apocalypse Explained 294.

Verses 1, 7. Jehovah your Creator; - whom I have created for My glory, etc. - The very end of the creation of the universe was that an angelic heaven might be formed out of mankind, where all who believe in God might live in eternal blessedness; for the Divine Love, which is in God, and which essentially is God, can intend nothing else; and the Divine Wisdom, which is also in God, and which is God, can produce nothing else. Since, then, the creation of the universe had for its end an angelic heaven, to be formed out of the human race, and at the same time a church on earth, man's passage into heaven lying through the church; and since the salvation of mankind, being effected upon men that are born in the world, is thus a continuation of creation, therefore we so frequently meet in the Word with the term "to create", the meaning of which is to form for heaven; as in the following passages:

"Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me." (Psalm 51:10) "You openest Your hand, they are filled with good; You sendest forth Your spirit, they are created." (Psalm 104:28, 30) "The people that shall be created, shall praise Jehovah." (Psalm 102:18)

Hence will appear the meaning of "to create" in the following passages:

"Thus says Jehovah, He that creats the heavens, He that spreads forth the earth"; etc. (Isaiah 42:5; 45:12, 18) "Behold, I create a new heaven and a new earth. Be glad and rejoice for ever in that which I create; for, behold, I create Jerusalem a rejoicing." (Isaiah 65:17, 18) True Christian Religion 773. See also 573.

2. When you passest through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you: when you walkest through the fire, you shalt not be burnt; and the flame shall not kindle upon you.

Verse 2. By "passing through the waters and through the rivers, and their not overflowing", is signified that falsities and ratiocinations from falsities against Truths shall not enter and corrupt; "waters" denoting falsities, and the "rivers" ratiocinations from falsities against Truths. By "walking through the fire, and not being burned, and the flame not kindling upon you", is signified that evils and cupidities arising from them shall not hurt; "fire" signifying evils, and the "flame" cupidities thence derived. Apocalypse Explained 504. See also Arcana Coelestia 739, 790.

By "rivers overflowing" are also signified temptations, because temptations are inundations of falsest Apocalypse Revealed 409.

[As spiritual temptations are here treated of, the following extract will elucidate this important subject.]

They alone who are being regenerated, undergo spiritual temptations; such temptations being pains of mind induced by evil spirits, in those who are in Good and Truth. While those spirits excite the evils of such persons, there arises in the mind an anxiety, which is temptation. Man does not know whence this anxiety comes, because he is unacquainted with its origin. There are both evil and good spirits attendant on every man; the evil spirits are in his evils, and the good spirits in his goods. When the evil spirits approach they draw forth his evils, while the good spirits, on the contrary, draw forth his goods; whence arise collision and combat, causing in the man an interior anxiety, which is temptation. Hence it is plain that temptations are not induced by heaven, but by hell; as is in accordance with the faith of the church, which teaches that God tempts no man." Interior anxieties are also experienced by those who are not in Goods and Truths; but natural, not spiritual anxieties; the two are distinguished by this, that natural anxieties have worldly things for their objects, but spiritual anxieties heavenly things.

The object contended for during temptations, is the dominion of Good over evil, or of evil over Good. The evil which is desirous of obtaining the dominion resides in the natural or external man, and the Good in the spiritual or internal man. If evil prevails, the natural man obtains the dominion; but if Good prevails, the spiritual conquers. These combats are carried on by the Truths of faith derived from the Word. By these man must contend against evils and falsities; for if he combats from any other principles, he cannot conquer, because in these alone the Lord is present. And as this warfare is carried on by the Truths of faith, man is not permitted to enter on it until he has been instructed in the knowledge of Good and Truth, and has thence obtained some degree of spiritual life; such combats, therefore, do not take place till men arrive at years of maturity. If man falls in temptation, his state after it becomes worse than before, because evil has thereby acquired power over Good, and falsity over Truth. Since at this day faith is rare, because there is no charity, the church being at its end, there are but few who are admitted into anv spiritual temptations; hence it is scarcely known what they are, and to what salutary purpose they are conducive.

The ends to which temptations are conducive are these. They acquire for Good dominion over evil, and for Truth dominion over the false; they confirm Truths in the mind, and conjoin them to Good; and they disperse evils and the falsities thence derived. They serve also to open the internal spiritual man, and to bring the natural man into subjection to it; to destroy the loves of self and of the world, and to subdue the concupiscences which proceed from them. When these things are effected, man acquires enlightenment and perception respecting the nature of Good and its Truth, and of falsity and its evil; whence he obtains intelligence and wisdom, which afterwards increase continually. The Lord alone combats for man in temptations; and unless he believes that the Lord alone combats and conquers for him, he undergoes only an external temptation, which is in no respect conducive to his salvation. The New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine 187-195.

3. For I am Jehovah your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Saviour: I have given Egypt for your ransom, Ethiopia and Seba in your stead.

4. Because you have been precious in My eyes, you have been honoured, and I have loved you: therefore will I give men instead of you, and peoples instead of your soul.

Verses 3, 4. These things also are said concerning the Lord, and concerning the redemption of those who acknowledge Him, and from affection receive Truths from Him. Redemption is signified by "a ransom [or an expiation]", and by "instead of you", and "for your soul"; the natural affection of knowing Truths derived from spiritual affection is signified by "Egypt, Ethiopia, and Seba"; their intelligence thence derived is signified by "man" [adam], and the church from them receive people." Inasmuch as by "Egypt" is signified the natural man, and all the intelligence of the spiritual man is terminated and has its foundation in the natural man, and in his knowledges and scientifics, therefore: man without them is not intelligent or wise, nor indeed rational, for the spiritual man must act as one by correspondences. Hence it is that, in ancient times, when the representative church was also in Egypt, the King of Egypt, or Pharaoh, was called "the son of the wise, and the son of the kings of antiquity"; (Isaiah 19:11) also "Egypt, the corner-stone of the tribes"; (verse 13.) for by the tribes are signified all the Truths and Goods of the church in one complex, and by the "corner-stone" is signified the foundation thereof. Hence also it is said of Solomon: by whom the Lord was represented as to His celestial and spiritual kingdoms, that his wisdom was above the sons of the East, and above all the wisdom of the Egyptians." (1 Kings 4:30)

By "the sons of the East" are understood all who at that time were in the knowledges of Truth and Good, and thereby were made wise; and by the "Egyptians" are understood all who were skilled in sciences, especially in the science of correspondences, and in intelligence thence derived; wherefore also it is that the sciences of the Egyptians are called "the hidden things of gold and of silver and desirable things" in Daniel 11:42, 43. Apocalypse Explained 654.

"Ethiopia" [Cush] and "Seba'" are the knowledges of spiritual things, which serve those who believe in the Lord. Arcana Coelestia 1171. See also the Exposition of Isaiah 45:14.

As to "Cush", or Ethiopia, and its spiritual meaning, see above, Chapter 18:1, 2, the Exposition.

5. Fear not, for I am with you: from the east I will bring your seed, and from the west I will gather you;

6. I will say to the north, Give up; and to the south, Withhold not: bring My sons from afar, and My daughters from the ends of the earth;

Verses 5, 6. These things are not said concerning the posterity of Jacob, but concerning the nations or Gentiles of whom the church is to be formed, By "Jacob and his seed" are understood those who will be of that church. That it is to be formed of those who are in falsities from ignorance, and thence in obscurity as to Truths, is signified by "from the west I will gather you, and I will say to the north, Give up"; and that these are not to be repelled by those who are in the Good of love and in Truths of doctrine from a clear [principle], but to be accepted, is signified by "from the east I will bring your seed, and I will say to the south, Withhold not"; for the "east" signifies the Good of love in clearness, the "south" the Truth of doctrine in clearness, and the "west" the Good of love in obscurity, and the "north" the Truth of doctrine in obscurity, such as it exists with those who, from ignorance of Truth, are in falsities, and yet desire Truths. The reason why those quarters have such a signification is, because in the spiritual world all dwell distinctly in those quarters according to the light of Truth and the affection of Good in which they are principled. Similar things are signified in Matthew, where it is said that "the elect are to be gathered together from the four winds, from the boundaries of heaven even to their boundaries." (Matthew 24:31)

That all who are in falsities from ignorance, and yet in the desire of Truth, are to be brought into that church, is signified by "Bring My sons from afar, and My daughters from the ends of the earth"; "sons" denoting those who are in Truths, and "daughters" those who are in the affection thereof, and hence also, abstractedly from persons, they signify Truths and their affections; and "afar off" and the "ends of the earth" signify removal from the light of Truth, because in falsities from ignorance, by reason of their not having the Word, or not understanding the sense thereof. Apocalypse Explained 724.

Verses 5-8. To "bring seed from the east, the west, the north, and the south", denotes all of whatsoever religion they be; for the "east" and "west" signify where the Good of love is in clearness and in obscurity, and the "north" and the "south" where the Truth of faith is in obscurity and in clearness.

In this place they are understood who are in obscurity from ignorance, for it is said "Bring My sons from afar, and My daughters from the ends of the earth." "Sons" are predicated of those who receive Truths, and "daughters" of those who receive Goods; "from afar" and "from the ends of the earth " signify those who are remote from the Truths and Goods of the church.

That all will be received and reformed by the Lord, who acknowledge Him, is signified by "I have created, I have formed, and I have made everyone called by My name." These, then, are they who are understood by "the blind who have eyes, and the deaf who have ears." Apocalypse Explained 239.

As to the "blind" and the "deaf", see Chapter 42:18, the Exposition.

The subject here treated of is concerning "Jacob" and "Israel", and unless it be known that the above spiritual things are understood by the quarters there mentioned, it may be supposed that nothing further is implied than that the sons of Israel and Jacob are to be collected from all parts; but by "Jacob" and "Israel" is understood the church which consists of those who are in the Good of love and in Truths from that Good; and by "their seed" are understood all who are of that church. The bringing and gathering together of those who are in the Good of love, is understood by "I will bring your seed from the east, and I will gather you from the west"; and the same with respect to those who are in Truths from that Good, is understood by "I will say to the north, Give up; and to the south Withhold not." That all who are in those Truths and Goods even to those who are in the ultimates, shall be brought, is signified by "Bring My sons from afar, and My daughters from the ends of the earth." Apocalypse Explained 422. See also Arcana Coelestia 1458, 9642.

7. Everyone that is called by My name, whom I have created for My glory, whom I have formed; yea, whom I have made.

8. Bring forth the blind people that have eyes, and the deaf that have ears.

Verse 7. Everyone that is called by My name, etc. - What is meant by being "called by the Lord's name", see Chapter 4:1, and especially Chapter 26:8, the Exposition.

9. Let all the nations be gathered together, and let the peoples be assembled: who among them will declare this, and will show us former things? let them bring forth their witnesses, that they may be justified; or let them hear, and say, It is truth.

Verse 9. Let all the nations be gathered together, and let the peoples be assembled, etc. - As to "nations" and "peoples", see Chapter 9:2, 3, the Exposition.

10. You are My witnesses, says Jehovah; even My servant, whom I have chosen: that you may know and believe Me, and understand that I am He: before Me no God was formed, and after Me there shall be none.

Verse 10. Where by "Servant" is understood the Lord as to His Divine Human, That the Lord calls Himself a "minister" by reason of His serving, is evident in the Evangelists:

"Whosoever will become great among you, ought to be your minister; and whosoever would be first, ought to be your servant; as the Son of Man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister:" (Matthew 20:25-28; Mark 10:42-44; Luke 22:27) Apocalypse Explained 409.

11. I, [even] I, am Jehovah; and beside Me there is no Saviour.

Verse 11. The idea of a Son born from eternity [which is a prevalent idea in the present Theology], descending and assuming the Humanity, must be found to be altogether erroneous, and will therefore fall to the ground and vanish when those passages in the Word are attended to where Jehovah Himself asserts that He Himself is the Saviour and Redeemer of the world, as He does in the following passages :

"I, [even] I, am Jehovah; and beside Me there is no Saviour." [Isaiah 43:11) "Is it not I, Jehovah, than whom there is no other God? a just God, and a Saviour; there is none beside Me." (Isaiah 45:21, 22; 44:6, 24; 47:4; 48:17; 49:26; 60:16; Hosea 13:4)

From these and many other passages it must be evident to every man who has the use of his eyes, and whose mind is opened by such use, that God, who is One, descended, and was made Man for the purpose of effecting the work of Redemption. How plainly is this seen, as in morning light, by attending to the divine declarations here quoted. Such men, however, as walk in the shadows of night, from a firm persuasion in their minds of the birth of another God from eternity, and of His descent and redeeming labours, close their eyes against the light of these divine declarations, and in that state consider how they may apply and pervert them to the confirmation of their own falsities. True Christian Religion 83. See also 188, 294.

12. I have declared, and I have saved: I have made it known; nor was it any strange [god] among you: and you are My witnesses, says Jehovah, that I am God.

13. Yea, before the day was, I am He; and there is none that can deliver out of My hand: I work; and who shall hinder it?

Verse 12. You are My witnesses, says Jehovah, that I am God [El]. In the Word, Jehovah, or the Lord, in many places is named El in the singular, also Eloah, and likewise Elohim in the plural, - each sometimes in one verse or in one series. The reason why He is so named cannot be known, unless the internal sense of the Word be known. That El involves one thing, and Eloah another, and Elohim another, every one may judge from this, that the Word is divine, that is, derives its origin from the Divine, and that it is hence inspired as to all expressions, yea, as to the smallest apex. What is involved in El, when it is named, and what in Elohim, may appear from what has been abundantly shown above, that is, that El and Elohim or "God" is mentioned when Truth is treated of, see n. Arcana Coelestia 709, 2580, 2769; hence it is that by "El" and "Elohim"; in the supreme sense, is signified, the Divine-Spiritual, for this is the same with Divine Truth, but with the difference that by "El" is signified Truth in the will and act, which is the same thing with the Good of Truth, see Arcana Coelestia 4337, 4353, 4390. "Elohim" in the plural is used, because by the Divine Truth are meant all Truths which are from the Lord; hence also the angels in the Word are sometimes called Elohim or "gods", Arcana Coelestia 4295, as will likewise appear from the passages below adduced from the Word.

Inasmuch now as "El" and "Elohim", in the supreme sense, signify the Lord as to Truth, they also signify Him as to power, for it is Truth of which power is predicated, for Good acts by Truth when it exercises power, Arcana Coelestia 3091, 4015; therefore wheresoever power derived from Truth is treated of in the Word, the Lord is called El and Elohim, or "God"; hence also it is that "El", in the original tongue, likewise signifies one who is powerful. That the names El and Elohim, or "God", are used in the Word where the Divine-Spiritual is treated of, or, what is the same thing, the Divine Truth, and thence the Divine power, may further appear from these passages:

"God said to Israel in the visions of the night, I am the God of the gods [El elohe] of your father: be not afraid of descending into Egypt; because I will place you there into a great nation." (Genesis 46:2, 3)

Inasmuch as these words were spoken to Israel, whom He would place into a great nation, and thereby Truth and the power thereof are treated of, it is said "El Elohe", which in the proximate sense signifies God of gods. That "Elohim" in the proximate sense are gods, because they are predicated of Truths and the power thence derived, is evident also from the following passage:

"There Jacob built an altar, and called the place El-beth-el, because there the Elohim were revealed to him, in his flying before his brother." (Genesis 35:7)

And in another place:

"Jehovah our God, Himself the God of gods, and Lord of lords, the God [El] great, powerful, and formidable"; (Deuteronomy 10:17) where "God of gods" is expressed by Elohe elohim, and afterwards "God" by El, to whom is attributed greatness and power.

So in David:

"God [El] the great Jehovah, and the great King over all gods [Elohim], in whose hand are the tracings out [pervestigationes] of the earth; and the strengths of the mountains are His"; (Psalm 95:3, 4) where the name "God", or El, is used, because the subject treated of is concerning the Divine Truth, and the power thence derived; also mention is made of "gods", because Truths thence derived are treated of; for "king" in the internal sense signifies Truth, see Arcana Coelestia 1672, 2015, 2069, 3009, 3670.

Hence it is evident what is involved in the expression, "a great King above all gods"; the "tracings out of the earth" are also the Truths of the church, which are called "strengths of the mountains" from power grounded in Good. Arcana Coelestia 1402.

14. Thus says Jehovah, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: For your sake have I sent to Babylon, and I will cast down all her bars; and the Chaldeans, whose shouting is in their ships:

15. I am Jehovah, your Holy One; the Creator of Israel, your King.

Verse 14. The subject here treated of is concerning the liberation of the faithful from the oppression of those who, devastate the church, and who are understood by "Babylon"; and they devastate it by this, that they withhold all from the knowledges of Truth and of Good, saying that they themselves know, and that they are to be believed, when notwithstanding they know nothing of Truth, thus keeping others, together with themselves, in dense ignorance, and turning them away from the worship of the Lord, in order that they themselves may be worshipped. To "cast down their bars" signifies to destroy their principles of the false, and the false devastating Truths; "bars" here denoting principles of the false, and the "Chaldeans" those who devastate by falsities: for by "Babylon", in the Word, are signified those who by evils destroy Goods, and by the "Chaldeans" those who by falsities destroy Truths; a "shouting in their ships" denotes the destruction of their doctrinals, Apocalypse Explained 514.

As to the signification of "bars", see Chapter 45:2, the Exposition.

16. Thus says Jehovah, who made a way in the sea, and a path in the mighty waters;

Verse 16. That by "sea,", in this passage, is not understood the sea, nor by "waters" are understood waters, is evident, forasmuch as it is said that "therein is the way and the path of Jehovah"; wherefore by "sea" and by "waters" are understood such things as Jehovah or the Lord is in, which are the knowledges of Truth in general from the Word, and Truths therein; the "sea" denoting those knowledges, and the "waters" Truths. Knowledges and Truths differ in this, that knowledges are of the natural man, and Truths of the spiritual man. Apocalypse Explained 275.

As to the further meaning of the "sea", when mentioned in the Word, see Chapter 21:1, the Exposition.

17. Who brought forth the chariot and the horse, the army and the power; together they lie down, they rise up no more: they are extinguished, they are quenched like tow.

18. Remember not the former things; and the things of old do not consider:

Verse 17. As to the spiritual meaning of "horses" and "chariots", see Chapter 31:1, the Exposition.

They are quenched like tow. - As to the meaning of "tow", see Chapter 1:30, 31, the Exposition, and verse 31, note.

19. Behold, I make a new thing; even now shall it spring. forth: will you not acknowledge it? yea, I will make in the.wilderness a way, and rivers in the desert.

Verses 19, 20. Treating of the Lord, and of the New Church from Him, which is understood by "Behold, I make a new thing; even now shall it spring forth."

By "making a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert", is signified to give Truths and the intelligence of Truths where they were not before; "way" denotes Truth leading to heaven, and "rivers" intelligence.

By "giving drink to the people" is signified to instruct those who desire to be instructed.

By "the beast of the field, the dragons, and the daughters of the owl", are signified those who know Truths and Goods from the memory only, and do not understand and perceive them; such are they who speak Truth without any idea of it, depending only upon others. Apocalypse Explained 518.

20. The beast of the field shall honour Me; the dragons, and the daughters of the owl: because I have given waters in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert, to give drink to My people, My chosen.

21. The people, whom I have formed for Myself, shall show forth My praise.

Verse 20. That "the beast of the field, dragons, and daughters of the owl", are not here understood, is evident, for these cannot " honour Jehovah"; but that the men of the church are understood, is manifest from its being said in what follows, "to give drink to My people, My chosen"; wherefore by the "beast of the field " are signified the affections of the knowledges of Truth, by "dragons " natural ideas, and by the "daughters of the owl" sensual affections, for the sensual principle is affected with Truths, and sees them in darkness, as owls see objects in the night. Hence it is also evident that the nations or Gentiles are hereby understood, with whom the New Church was to be established, for before reformation they were in such an obscure affection and natural thought.

By "giving waters in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert", is signified to imbue with Truths and thence with intelligence, those who were before in ignorance. "Waters" denoting Truths, "rivers" intelligence, and

"wilderness" and "desert" signify ignorance. To "Give drink to the people of Jehovah, and to His chosen", signifies to instruct those who are in the Truths of faith and In the Good of charity; they are called "people" who are principled in the Truths of faith, and they "chosen" who are in the Good of charity. Apocalypse Explained 650.

As to the "daughters of the owl", in a bad sense, or the sensual perceptions of the mind entirely perverted, see Chapter 13:19-22, the Exposition. "Dragons" in this verse, as in Chapter 35:7, signify those who, although sensual, can nevertheless receive the Truth and be saved.

22. But you have not called upon Me, O Jacob; but you have been weary of Me, O Israel!

Verse 22. That to "call upon the name of Jehovah" is a frequent and common form of expression for all the worship ot the Lord, is well-known. The Lord cannot be worshipped except from charity; if from faith which is not from charity, there is no worship, because it is only from the mouth and not from the heart. "You have not brought to Me the lamb of your burnt-offering, neither have you honoured Me with your sacrifices", etc. In these words, in a summary form, all representative worship is involved. Arcana Coelestia 440.

23. You have not brought to Me the lamb of your burnt-offering: neither have you honoured Me with your sacrifices. I have not caused you to serve with an offering, nor wearied you with incense.

Verse 23. I have not caused you to serve with an offering; nor wearied you with incense. - Inasmuch as all worship of the Lord is effected from spiritual Good, which is derived from celestial Good, therefore both the "meat-offering" and the "incense" are mentioned in the letter separately, which, notwithstanding, in the internal or spiritual sense, are understood conjointly, but the one from the other. Apocalypse Explained 324. See also 491.

24. You have not bought for Me with silver the sweet cane; neither have you filled Me with the fat of your sacrifices: but you have made Me to serve with your sins, you have wearied Me with thine iniquities.

Verse 24. These words stand for-you have not acquired for yourself the Truths of faith. "Neither have you filled Me with the fat of your sacrifices", for-you have not acquired the Good of love. Burnt-offerings and sacrifices were the principal things of divine worship among the Jews; wherefore by " burnt-offerings" and "sacrifices" in general is signified worship, and by the things which were sacrificed, also by all the process of the sacrifice, is signified the quality of worship, and by the "fat" and the "burning" thereof, the very celestial divine principle, which is the Good of love from the Lord. Arcana Coelestia 5943.

25. I, [even] I, am He that blotts out your transgressions for Mine own sake; and your sins I will not remember.

Verse 25. As to the "remission of sins", and what are the signs that sins are remitted or removed, see Chapter 33:24, the Exposition.

26. Put Me in remembrance; let us plead together: declare you, that you mayest be justified.

Verse 26. It is said in the Word concerning Jehovah, that is, the Lord, that He "remembers", and that He "does not remember", by which is signified that whatsoever then happens, whether it be preservation or deliverance, is from Mercy; in like manner as when it is said of Him that He "sees", "hears", and "knows", and that He "does not see", "does not hear", and "does not know", by which also commiserations and non-commiserations are understood. That it is so said is from similitude with man, and from appearance, for when a man turns himself away from the Lord, which is the case when he does evil, then because the Lord is at his back, it appears as though the Lord did not see him, did not hear him, and did not know him, nor remember him; whereas all this is with man, Hence from the appearance it is so said in the Word; whereas, when a man turns himself to the Lord, which is the case when he does well, the contrary is the case. Every one may know that "remembrance" and "remembering" cannot be predicated of the Lord, since things past and future in Him are eternal, that is, are present to Him from eternity to eternity. Arcana Coelestia 9849.

As to "pleading [or reasoning] together", see Chapter 1:18, the Exposition.

27. Your first, father has sinned, and your teachers have transgressed against Me.

Verse 27. See the Exposition of Isaiah Chapter 1:28.

28. Therefore I will profane the princes of the sanctuary; and will give Jacob to the curse, and Israel to reproaches.

Verse 28. To "profane the princes of the sanctuary " signifies holy Truths; the extirpation of the Truth of the external and of the internal church is signified by "giving Jacob to the curse, and Israel to reproaches." Arcana Coelestia 5044 Arcana Coelestia 5044[1-13].

---
Isaiah Chapter 43

1. BUT now, thus says Jehovah, your Creator, O Jacob, and your Former, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed you, I have called you by your name; you art Mine.

2. When you passest through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you: when you walkest through the fire, you shalt not be burnt; and the flame shall not kindle upon you.

3. For I am Jehovah your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Saviour: I have given Egypt for your ransom, Ethiopia and Seba in your stead.

4. Because you have been precious in My eyes, you have been honoured, and I have loved you: therefore will I give men instead of you, and peoples instead of your soul.

5. Fear not, for I am with you: from the east I will bring your seed, and from the west I will gather you;

6. I will say to the north, Give up; and to the south, Withhold not: bring My sons from afar, and My daughters from the ends of the earth;

7. Everyone that is called by My name, whom I have created for My glory, whom I have formed; yea, whom I have made.

8. Bring forth the blind people that have eyes, and the deaf that have ears.

9. Let all the nations be gathered together, and let the peoples be assembled: who among them will declare this, and will show us former things? let them bring forth their witnesses, that they may be justified; or let them hear, and say, It is truth.

10. You are My witnesses, says Jehovah; even My servant, whom I have chosen: that you may know and believe Me, and understand that I am He: before Me no God was formed, and after Me there shall be none.

11. I, [even] I, am Jehovah; and beside Me there is no Saviour.

12. I have declared, and I have saved: I have made it known; nor was it any strange [god] among you: and you are My witnesses, says Jehovah, that I am God.

13. Yea, before the day was, I am He; and there is none that can deliver out of My hand: I work; and who shall hinder it?

14. Thus says Jehovah, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: For your sake have I sent to Babylon, and I will cast down all her bars; and the Chaldeans, whose shouting is in their ships:

15. I am Jehovah, your Holy One; the Creator of Israel, your King.

16. Thus says Jehovah, who made a way in the sea, and a path in the mighty waters;

17. Who brought forth the chariot and the horse, the army and the power; together they lie down, they rise up no more: they are extinguished, they are quenched like tow.

18. Remember not the former things; and the things of old do not consider:

19. Behold, I make a new thing; even now shall it spring. forth: will you not acknowledge it? yea, I will make in the.wilderness a way, and rivers in the desert.

20. The beast of the field shall honour Me; the dragons, and the daughters of the owl: because I have given waters in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert, to give drink to My people, My chosen.

21. The people, whom I have formed for Myself, shall show forth My praise.

22. But you have not called upon Me, O Jacob; but you have been weary of Me, O Israel!

23. You have not brought to Me the lamb of your burnt-offering: neither have you honoured Me with your sacrifices. I have not caused you to serve with an offering, nor wearied you with incense.

24. You have not bought for Me with silver the sweet cane; neither have you filled Me with the fat of your sacrifices: but you have made Me to serve with your sins, you have wearied Me with thine iniquities.

25. I, [even] I, am He that blotts out your transgressions for Mine own sake; and your sins I will not remember.

26. Put Me in remembrance; let us plead together: declare you, that you mayest be justified.

27. Your first, father has sinned, and your teachers have transgressed against Me.

28. Therefore I will profane the princes of the sanctuary; and will give Jacob to the curse, and Israel to reproaches.

From Swedenborg's Works

Main explanations:

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 43


Other references to this verse:

Arcana Coelestia 2159


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 409

Other New Christian Commentary

  Stories and their meanings:


  PDF Resources


Hop to Similar Bible Verses

Exodus 8:6

Deuteronomy 4:35, 39

Isaiah 41:4, 8, 44:6, 8, 45:5, 46:9, 55:4

Word/Phrase Explanations

witnesses
In court, a witness is someone who saw a crime being committed, or observed something that could help determine the guilt or innocence of the...

saith
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...

the Lord
The Bible refers to the Lord in many different ways, which from the text seem indistinguishable and interchangeable. Understood in the internal sense, though, there...

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

servant
“Servant” literally means “a person who serves another,"" and its meaning is similar in reference to the spiritual meaninngs of the Bible. Our lives in...

know
In a general sense, men represent things of the intellect – facts, ideas, knowledge, everything from the deepest truths to the most pernicious falsities about...

before
In most cases, the meaning of "before" is pretty straightforward, both as a way of assessing relative time, and in its use meaning "in someone's...

formed
Forming from the womb, as in Isaiah 44:2, 24; 49:1, 5, signifies the reformer. For references to the Lord as Reformer and Regenerator, see Doctrine...

after
Behind, or after, (Gen. 16:13), signifies within or above, or an interior or superior principle.

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 For Reflection: The Lord Calling You by Name
Activity | Ages over 15


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