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Arcana Coelestia #9372

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9372. And He said unto Moses. That this signifies that which concerns the Word in general, is evident from the representation of Moses, as being the Word (of which below); and from the signification of “He said,” as involving those things which follow in this chapter, thus those which concern the Word (see n. 9370). (That Moses represents the Word, can be seen from what has been often shown before about Moses, as from the preface to Genesis 18; and n. 4859, 5922, 6723, 6752, 6771, 6827, 7010, 7014, 7089, 7382, 8601, 8760, 8787, 8805.) Here Moses represents the Word in general, because it is said of him in what follows, that he alone should come near unto Jehovah (verse 2); and also that, being called unto out of the midst of the cloud, he entered into it, and went up the mount (verses 16-18).

(References: Exodus 24:16, 24:18)


[2] In the Word there are many who represent the Lord in respect to truth Divine, or in respect to the Word; but chief among them are Moses, Elijah, Elisha, and John the Baptist. That Moses does so, can be seen in the explications just cited above; that so do Elijah and Elisha, can be seen in the preface to Genesis 18; and n. 2762, 5247; and that John the Baptist does so is evident from the fact that he was “Elias who was to come.” He who does not know that John the Baptist represented the Lord as to the Word, cannot know what all those things infold and signify which are said about him in the New Testament; and therefore in order that this secret may stand open, and that at the same time it may appear that Elias, and also Moses, who were seen when the Lord was transfigured, signified the Word, some things may here be quoted which are spoken about John the Baptist; as in Matthew:

After the messengers of John had departed, Jesus began to speak concerning John, saying, What went ye out into the wilderness to see? a reed shaken by the wind? But what went ye out to see? a man clothed in soft raiment? Behold, they that wear soft things are in kings’ houses. But what went ye out to see? a prophet? Yea, I say unto you, even more than a prophet. This is he of whom it is written, Behold I send Mine angel before Thy face, who shall prepare Thy way before Thee. Verily I say unto you, Among those who are born of women there hath not arisen a greater than John the Baptist; nevertheless he that is less in the kingdom of the heavens is greater than he. All the prophets and the law prophesied until John. And if ye are willing to believe, he is Elias who was to come. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear (Matthew 11:7-15; and also Luke 7:24-28).

No one can know how these things are to be understood, unless he knows that this John represented the Lord as to the Word, and unless he also knows from the internal sense what is signified by “the wilderness” in which he was, also what by “a reed shaken by the wind,” and likewise by “soft raiment in kings’ houses;” and further what is signified by his being “more than a prophet,” and by “none among those who are born of women being greater than he, and nevertheless he that is less in the kingdom of the heavens is greater than he,” and lastly by his being “Elias.” For without a deeper sense, all these words are uttered merely from some comparison, and not from anything of weight.

(References: Arcana Coelestia 2135)


[3] But it is very different when by John is understood the Lord as to the Word, or the Word representatively. Then by “the wilderness of Judea in which John was” is signified the state in which the Word was at the time when the Lord came into the world, namely, that it was “in the wilderness,” that is, it was in obscurity so great that the Lord was not at all acknowledged, neither was anything known about His heavenly kingdom; when yet all the prophets prophesied about Him, and about His kingdom, that it was to endure forever. (That “a wilderness” denotes such obscurity, see n. 2708, 4736, 7313.) For this reason the Word is compared to “a reed shaken by the wind” when it is explained at pleasure; for in the internal sense “a reed” denotes truth in the ultimate, such as is the Word in the letter.

[4] That the Word in the ultimate, or in the letter, is crude and obscure in the sight of men; but that in the internal sense it is soft and shining, is signified by their “not seeing a man clothed in soft raiment, for behold those who wear soft things are in kings’ houses.” That such things are signified by these words, is plain from the signification of “raiment,” or “garments,” as being truths (n. 2132, 2576, 4545, 4763, 5248, 6914, 6918, 9093); and for this reason the angels appear clothed in garments soft and shining according to the truths from good with them (n. 5248, 5319, 5954, 9212, 9216). The same is evident from the signification of “kings’ houses,” as being the abodes of the angels, and in the universal sense, the heavens; for “houses” are so called from good (n. 2233, 2234, 3128, 3652, 3720, 4622, 4982, 7836, 7891, 7996, 7997); and “kings,” from truth (n. 1672, 2015, 2069, 3009, 4575, 4581, 4966, 5044, 6148). Therefore by virtue of their reception of truth from the Lord, the angels are called “sons of the kingdom,” “sons of the king,” and also “kings.”

(References: Arcana Coelestia 2233-2234, 7996-7997)


[5] That the Word is more than any doctrine in the world, and more than any truth in the world, is signified by “what went ye out to see? a prophet? Yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet;” and by, “there hath not arisen among those who are born of women a greater than John the Baptist;” for in the internal sense “a prophet” denotes doctrine (n. 2534, 7269); and “those who are born,” or are the sons, “of women” denote truths (n. 489, 491, 533, 1147, 2623, 2803, 2813, 3704, 4257).

[6] That in the internal sense, or such as it is in heaven, the Word is in a degree above the Word in the external sense, or such as it is in the world, and such as John the Baptist taught, is signified by, “he that is less in the kingdom of the heavens is greater than he;” for as perceived in heaven the Word is of wisdom so great that it transcends all human apprehension. That the prophecies about the Lord and His coming, and that the representatives of the Lord and of His kingdom, ceased when the Lord came into the world, is signified by, “all the prophets and the law prophesied until John.” That the Word was represented by John, as by Elijah, is signified by his being “Elias who is to come.”

[7] The same is signified by these words in Matthew:

The disciples asked Jesus, Why say the scribes that Elias must first come? He answered and said, Elias must needs first come, and restore all things. But I say unto you, that Elias hath come already, and they knew him not, but did unto him whatsoever they wished. Even so shall the Son of man also suffer of them. And they understood that He spoke to them of John the Baptist (Matthew 17:10-13).

That “Elias hath come, and they knew him not, but did unto him whatsoever they wished” signifies that the Word has indeed taught them that the Lord is to come, but that still they did not wish to comprehend, interpreting it in favor of the rule of self, and thus extinguishing what is Divine in it. That they would do the same with the truth Divine itself, is signified by “even so shall the Son of man also suffer of them.” (That “the Son of man” denotes the Lord as to truth Divine, see n. 2803, 2813, 3704)

[8] From all this it is now evident what is meant by the prophecy about John in Malachi:

Behold I send you Elijah the prophet before the great and terrible day of Jehovah cometh (Malachi 4:5).

Moreover, the Word in the ultimate, or such as it is in the external form in which it appears before man in the world, is described by the “clothing” and “food” of John the Baptist, in Matthew:

John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judea, had His clothing of camel’s hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his food was locusts and wild honey (Matthew 3:1, 4).

In like manner it is described by Elijah in the second book of Kings:

He was a hairy man, and girt with a girdle of leather about his loins (2 Kings 1:8).

By “clothing,” or a “garment,” when said of the Word, is signified truth Divine there in the ultimate form; by “camel’s hair” are signified memory-truths such as appear there before a man in the world; by the “leathern girdle” is signified the external bond connecting and keeping in order all the interior things; by “food” is signified spiritual nourishment from the knowledges of truth and of good out of the Word; by “locusts” are signified ultimate or most general truths; and by “wild honey” their pleasantness.

[9] That such things are signified by “clothing” and “food” has its origin in the representatives of the other life, where all appear clothed according to truths from good, and where food also is represented according to the desires of acquiring knowledge and growing wise. From this it is that “clothing,” or a “garment,” denotes truth (as may be seen from the citations above; and that “food” or “meat” denotes spiritual nourishment, n. 3114, 4459, 4792, 5147, 5293, 5340, 5342, 5576, 5579, 5915, 8562, 9003; that “a girdle” denotes a bond which gathers up and holds together interior things, n. 9341; that “leather” denotes what is external, n. 3540; and thus “a leathern girdle” denotes an external bond; that “hairs” denote ultimate or most general truths, n. 3301, 5569-5573; that “a camel” denotes memory-knowledge in general, n. 3048, 3071, 3143, 3145, 4156; that “a locust” denotes nourishing truth in the extremes, n. 7643; and that “honey” denotes the pleasantness thereof, n. 5620, 6857, 8056). It is called “wild honey,” or “honey of the field,” because by “a field” is signified the church (n. 2971, 3317, 3766, 7502, 7571, 9139, 9295). He who does not know that such things are signified, cannot possibly know why Elijah and John were so clothed. And yet that these things signified something peculiar to these prophets, can be thought by everyone who thinks well about the Word.

[10] Because John the Baptist represented the Lord as to the Word, therefore also when he spoke of the Lord, who was the Word itself, he said of himself that he was “not Elias, nor the prophet,” and that he was “not worthy to loose the latchet of the Lord’s shoe,” as in John:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and God was the Word. And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory. The Jews from Jerusalem, priests and Levites, asked John who he was. And he confessed, and denied not, I am not the Christ. Therefore they asked him, What then? Art thou Elias? But he said, I am not. Art thou the prophet? He answered, No. They said therefore unto him, Who art thou? He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said Isaiah the prophet. They said therefore, Why then baptizest thou, if thou art not the Christ, nor Elias, nor the prophet? He answered, I baptize with water; in the midst of you standeth one whom ye know not; He it is who is to come after me, who was before me, the latchet of whose shoe I am not worthy to unloose. When he saw Jesus, he said, Behold the Lamb of God, who taketh away the sin of the world! This is He of whom I said, After me cometh a man who was before me; for he was before me (John 1:1, 14, 19-30).

From these words it is plain that when John spoke about the Lord Himself, who was Truth Divine itself, or the Word, he said that he himself was not anything, because the shadow disappears when the light itself appears, that is, the representative disappears when the original itself makes its appearance. (That the representatives had in view holy things, and the Lord Himself, and not at all the person that represented, see n. 665, 1097, 1361, 3147, 3881, 4208, 4281, 4288, 4292, 4307, 4444, 4500, 6304, 7048, 7439, 8588, 8788, 8806.) One who does not know that representatives vanish like shadows at the presence of light, cannot know why John denied that he was Elias and the prophet.

[11] From all this it can now be seen what is signified by Moses and Elias, who were seen in glory, and who spoke with the Lord when transfigured, of His departure which He should accomplish at Jerusalem (Luke 9:29-31); namely, that they signified the Word (“Moses” the historic Word, and “Elias” the prophetic Word), which in the internal sense throughout treats of the Lord, of His coming into the world, and of His departure out of the world; and therefore it is said that “Moses and Elias were seen in glory,” for “glory” denotes the internal sense of the Word, and the “cloud” its external sense (see the preface to Genesis 18, and n. 5922, 8427).

(References: Arcana Coelestia 2135; Exodus 24:1-2)

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Arcana Coelestia 9374, 9378, 9379, 9382, 9386, 9429, 9504, 9779, 9806, 9828, 9954, 10027, 10090, 10215, 10251, 10337, 10355, 10375, 10396, 10397, 10400, 10432, 10450, 10460, 10468, 10528, 10549, 10551, 10635, 10636, 10641, 10690


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 19, 64, 66, 83, 130, 355, 375, 701, 710, 735, 746

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Arcana Coelestia #1672

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1672. And the kings that were with him. That this signifies the apparent truth which is of that good, is evident from the signification of “kings” in the Word. “Kings,” “kingdoms,” and “peoples,” in the historical and the prophetical parts of the Word, signify truths and the things which are of truths, as may be abundantly confirmed. In the Word an accurate distinction is made between a “people” and a “nation;” by a “people” are signified truths, and by a “nation” goods, as before shown (n. 1259, 1260). “Kings” are predicated of peoples, but not so much of nations. Before the sons of Israel sought for kings, they were a nation, and represented good, or the celestial; but after they desired a king, and received one, they became a people, and did not represent good or the celestial, but truth or the spiritual; which was the reason why this was imputed to them as a fault (see 1 Samuel 8:7-22, concerning which subject, of the Lord’s Divine mercy elsewhere). As Chedorlaomer is named here, and it is added, “the kings that were with him,” both good and truth are signified; by “Chedorlaomer,” good, and by “the kings,” truth. But what was the quality of the good and truth at the beginning of the Lord’s temptations has already been stated.

(References: Arcana Coelestia 1259-1260, Genesis 14:5)

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Arcana Coelestia 1723, 2015, 2466, 2504, 2509, 2567, 2761, 2781, 2826, 2830, 2832, 2851, 2906, 3009, 3105, 3353, 3355, 3365, 3488, 3703, 3708, 3863, 4402, 4575, 4691, 4728, 4763, 4876, 5023, 5038, 5044, 5313, 5321, 5323, 5619, 6015, 6125, 6148, ...

The New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine 1


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Apocalypse Explained 27, 126, 236


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Arcana Coelestia #10137

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10137. 'And a drink offering of a quarter of a hin of wine' means spiritual truth, the amount needed for a joining together. This is clear from the meaning of 'wine' as truth, dealt with in 1071, 1798, 6377, at this point spiritual truth answering to the spiritual good derived from celestial good, meant by 'fine flour mixed with oil', dealt with immediately above in 10136 (where good is the subject in the Word, so too is truth, and indeed the truth belonging to the same class as the good. This is so because every single thing in heaven and also in the world has connection with good or with truth, and with both if it is to have any real existence, since good without truth is not good and truth without good is not truth, see the places referred to in 9263, 9314. This explains why when a minchah, which consisted of bread, was offered, so was a drink offering, which consisted of wine, in much the same way as in the Holy Supper. So it is that 'a drink offering of wine' is used here to mean the truth that answers to the good meant by a minchah, dealt with immediately above); and from the meaning of 'a quarter of a hin' as the amount needed for a joining together, dealt with immediately above in 10136.

[2] Everyone may see that not merely bread and wine should be understood by a minchah, which consisted of bread, and a drink offering, which consisted of wine, but something that belongs to the Church and to heaven, thus spiritual and celestial things, which are heaven's and the Church's. If this had not been so what would have been the point of putting the bread and wine on the fire on the altar? How could this have been pleasing to Jehovah, or how could it have been, as it says, an odour of rest to Him? How could it have expiated a person? Anyone who thinks reverently about the Word cannot imagine how an action so earthly could be pleasing to Jehovah unless something Divine on a deeper, more internal level was contained in it. The person who believes that the Word is Divine and spiritual throughout ought to believe completely that every detail there has some heavenly arcanum concealed within it. But the reason why no one up to now has known just where such an arcanum lies is that no one has known that an internal sense, which is spiritual and Divine, exists within every detail there. Nor has anyone known that angels are present with each person, perceiving his thoughts and understanding the Word in a spiritual manner when he reads it; that then through them a holy influence from the Lord reaches him; and that therefore through those angels heaven is linked to the person, to whom the Lord is linked by means of the heavens. It is for this reason that the kind of Word just described has been given to mankind, that Word being the sole means by which the Lord can provide for his salvation.

[3] The fact that 'minchah', consisting of bread, means the good of love and that 'drink offering', consisting of wine, means the good of faith, and that this is what the angels see in them, becomes clear from all those places in the Word which make reference to a minchah or a drink offering, such as these verses in Joel,

The minchah has been cut off, and the drink offering, from the house of Jehovah; the priests have been mourning, the ministers of Jehovah. The field has been devastated, the land has been mourning because the grain has been devastated, the new wine has dried up, the oil languishes. The vine has dried up and the fig tree languishes. Wail, O ministers of the altar, because the minchah and the drink offering have been withheld from the house of your God. For the day of Jehovah is near, and comes as destruction from Shaddai. Joel 1:9-15.

This refers to the final period of the Church, when the good of love and truth of faith are not present there any longer, meant by 'the day of Jehovah is near, and comes as destruction from Shaddai'.

[4] From this it is evident that by the minchah and drink offering which have been cut off from the house of Jehovah, the field which has been devastated, the land which mourns, the grain which too has been devastated, the new wine which has dried up, the oil which languishes, and the vine and fig which do so, such things as belong to the Church and to heaven are meant. It is the internal sense however that shows what it is they mean. From that sense it is evident that 'the field' means the Church as regards its reception of truth, see 3766, 4982, 7502, 7571, 9295; 'the land' the Church as regards [its reception of] good, see the places referred to in 9325; 'the grain' all the good that the Church has, 5295, 5410, 5959; 'the new wine' all the truth that the Church has, 3580; 'the oil' the good of love, 4582, 4638, 9780; 'the vine' the spiritual Church's interior good, 5113, 6376, 9277; and 'the fig' its exterior good, 217, 4231, 5113. From all this it is evident that 'the minchah' and 'the drink offering' mean worship springing from the good of love and from the good of faith.

[5] In Malachi,

I will not accept a minchah from your hands. For from the rising of the sun even to its setting, great is the name of Jehovah among the nations; and in every place [there will be] incense, offered to My name, and a pure minchah. Malachi 1:10-11.

It is evident that a minchah should not be understood here either by 'a minchah', nor incense by 'incense', since the subject is the Church among the gentile nations, among whom there was no minchah. For it says, 'From the rising of the sun to its setting, great is the name of Jehovah among the nations; and in every place [there will be] a pure minchah and incense', 'incense' meaning adoration springing from the good of faith, see 9475.

[6] Something similar occurs in David,

My prayers are acceptable, [as] incense before You, the lifting up of my hands, [as] the evening minchah. Psalms 141:2.

'The evening minchah' means the good of love in the external man.

[7] In Isaiah,

You inflamed yourselves among the gods under every green tree. You have also poured out a drink offering to them; you have presented a gift 1 . You offer the king a gift in oil, and multiply your perfumes; and you debase yourself even to hell. Isaiah 57:5-6, 9.

This refers to worship based on evils and falsities which come from hell. 'The gods' in the internal sense are falsities, for although those who worshipped other gods called them by name, nevertheless falsities arising from evils were what they worshipped. Regarding the gods of the foreigner in the Word, that falsities are meant by them, see 4402(end), 8941. '[Every] green tree' means every perception, recognition, and corroboration of falsity, 2722, 2972, 4552, 7692, 'green' implying a sensory apprehension, 7691. 'Inflaming oneself' means worship that is passionate, for 'the fire' that causes such fervour is love in both senses, 5215, 6832, 7575. 'Pouring out a drink offering' is worship springing from the falsities of evil; 'offering the king a gift in oil' is the worship of Satan springing from evils, 'a gift in oil' being a minchah, and 'multiplying perfumes' is multiplying offerings of incense, by which acts of adoration are meant, 9475. Therefore it also says that he debases himself even to hell.

[8]From these considerations it becomes clear that 'a minchah', which consisted of bread, and 'a drink offering', which consisted of wine, mean things such as belong to the Church and to heaven, namely heavenly food and drink, in the same way as the bread and wine in the Holy Supper do - for the reason given above, that heaven may join itself to a person through the Word, consequently that the Lord may do so through heaven by means of the Word. Since the Divine presence in the Word consists in such things it nourishes the minds not only of people in the world but also of angels and causes heaven and the world to be one.

[9] From this it also becomes clear that all the things without exception which have been stated and commanded in the Word regarding the minchah and drink offering, or bread and wine, contain Divine arcana within them. This is so for example with the requirement that a minchah should consist of fine flour which had oil and also frankincense on it, that it should be altogether salted, and that it should be unleavened or without yeast. Then there is the requirement that there was to be one set of proportions for the mixture when a lamb was sacrificed, another when it was a ram, another when it was a young bull, and yet another in guilt- and sin-sacrifices, while the proportions in other sacrifices were different again. The proportion of wine in the drink offering varied in a similar way. Unless these specific requirements had embodied the arcana of heaven no such things would ever have been commanded in connection with the various forms of worship.

[10] To enable these different requirements to be seen alongside one another, let them be set out here in their own order, as contained in the eucharistic sacrifices and burnt offerings, in Numbers 15:4-12; 28:9-12, 20-21, 28-29; 29:3-4, 9-10, 14-15, 18, 21, 24, 27, 30, 33, 37,

For each lamb there was a minchah consisting of one tenth of an ephah of fine flour mixed with a quarter of a hin of oil; and the wine for the drink offering was a quarter of a hin.

For each ram there was a minchah consisting of two tenths [of an ephah] of fine flour, and a third of a hin of oil; and a third of a hin of wine for the drink offering.

For each young bull there was a minchah consisting of three tenths [of an ephah] of fine flour mixed with oil, a half of a hin; and half of a hin of wine for the drink offering.

The reason why the proportions of fine flour, oil, and wine for a lamb should be different from those for a ram or for a young bull was that a lamb meant the inmost good of innocence, a ram the middle good of innocence, and a young bull the lowest or external good of innocence. For there are three heavens - the inmost, the middle, and the lowest - and therefore also there are three degrees of the good of innocence. The increase of it from first to last is meant by the increase in the proportions of fine flour, oil, and wine. It should be remembered that the good of innocence is the very soul of heaven, because that good alone is the recipient of the love, charity, and faith which constitute the heavens.

'A lamb' means the inmost good of innocence, see 3994, 10132.

'A ram' means the middle or interior good of innocence, 10042.

'A young bull' means the lowest or external good of innocence, 9391, 9990.

(References: Numbers 28:10-12, 28:10-29, 29:3-37)


[11] In sacrifices for thanksgiving (confessio) however there was a minchah consisting of unleavened cakes mixed with oil, unleavened wafers anointed with oil, cakes made of fried flour and mixed with oil, and in addition leavened bread cakes, Leviticus 7:11-12; and in guilt- and sin-sacrifices there was a minchah consisting of a tenth of an ephah of fine flour, but without oil or frankincense on top of it, Leviticus 5:11. The reason why no oil or frankincense should be put on top of the minchah composing a sin- or guilt-sacrifice was that 'oil' is a sign of the good of love and 'frankincense' a sign of the truth which goes with that good, and a sin- or a guilt-sacrifice is a sign of purification and expiation from evils and the falsities arising from them, which therefore were not to be mingled with good or the truth springing from it.

[12] In addition to these there were the minchah of Aaron and his sons on the day they were going to be anointed, see Leviticus 6:20-22; the minchah of the firstfruits of the harvest, Leviticus 2:14-15; 23:10, 12-13, 17; the minchah of the Nazirite, Numbers 6:13-21]; the minchah of jealousy, Numbers 5:11-31]; the minchah of one cleansed from leprosy, Leviticus 14:1-32]; and also the minchah baked in an oven, the minchah prepared in a pan, and the minchah cooked in a pot, Leviticus 2:4-7. There was was to be no yeast in a minchah, nor any honey; and the minchah had to be fully salted, Leviticus 2:11, 13. The reason why there should be no yeast in a minchah, nor any honey, was that in the spiritual sense 'yeast' means falsity arising from evil, and 'honey' external delight very much mixed with the delight belonging to love of the world, which also causes fermentation in heavenly forms of good and truths and subsequent disintegration of them. And the reason why they should be fully salted was that 'salt' was a sign of truth desiring good and so joining the two together.

'Yeast' means falsity arising from evil, see 2342, 7906, 8051, 9992.

'Honey' means external delight, thus such delight belonging to love in both senses, 5620.

'Salt' means truth desiring good, 9207.

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Footnotes:

1. literally, you have caused a gift to go up/ascend

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(References: Exodus 29:40; Leviticus 2:3-7, 2:10-12, 2:10-11, 6:13-15, 14, 14:1; Numbers 5, 5:1, 6, 6:1)

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Arcana Coelestia 10140, 10177, 10206, 10207, 10262

The New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine 218, 221


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 242, 324, 329, 513, 619

Other New Christian Commentary

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