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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 #8588

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8588. And Meribah. That this signifies the quality of the complaining, is evident from the fact that in the original tongue “Meribah” means “contention,” or “quarreling,” and “quarreling” signifies complaining (see n. 8563, 8566); and because names signify the quality of the thing (n. 8587), therefore “Meribah” here signifies the quality of the complaining. As regards this temptation itself and its quality, be it known that in this passage are described those who in temptations almost yield, namely, those who complain against heaven and also against the Divine Itself, and at last almost disbelieve in the Divine Providence. These things are signified in the internal sense by what precedes, and also by what follows in this verse, namely, the quality of the state of the temptation, which is signified by “Massah,” and the quality of the complaining in the temptation, which is signified by “Meribah.” That this quality is here signified by “Meribah,” is plain in David:

Thou calledst upon Me in distress, and I rescued thee; I answered thee in the secret place, I proved thee at the waters of Meribah (Psalms 81:7).

[2] But in the internal historical sense, in which the subject treated of is the state of religion with the Israelitish nation, that nation is described in respect to its quality toward Jehovah, namely, that they were not willing by supplication to entreat Him for aid, but that they expostulated. The reason was, that at heart they did not acknowledge Jehovah as the supreme God, but only in the mouth, when they saw the miracles. That at heart they did not acknowledge Him is very evident from the Egyptian calf which they made for themselves and worshiped, saying that these were their gods; also from their frequent apostasy (of which see n. 8301). This is what is here described in the internal historical sense; but in the internal spiritual sense is described the quality of the temptation with those who before they are liberated are brought to the last of temptation.

[3] That the quality of the Israelitish nation and of its religiosity is described by contention with Moses at Massah and Meribah, is also evident in the following passages:

Harden not your heart, as at Meribah, as in the day of Massah in the wilderness, where your fathers tempted Me; they tempted Me, and saw My work; for forty years did I feel loathing at the generation, and said, It is a people that do err in their heart, and the same have not known My ways, to whom I sware in Mine anger that they should not come unto My rest (Psalms 95:8-11).

Ye shall not tempt Jehovah your God, as ye tempted Him in Massah (Deuteronomy 6:16; 9:22, 24).

Of Leviticus he said, Thy Thummim and thy Urim are with the Holy Man, whom thou didst tempt at Massah, with whom thou didst contend at the waters of Meribah (Deuteronomy 33:8).

“The Holy Man” here denotes the Lord, whom they tempted, and whom Moses and Aaron did not sanctify.

(References: Deuteronomy 4:16, Deuteronomy 33:8-9)


[4] In the internal historical sense, in which the subject treated of is the religiosity of the Israelitish nation, by Moses and Aaron is not represented truth Divine, but the religiosity of that nation whose leaders and heads they were (n. 7041). Because this religiosity was such as said above, it was intimated to them that they should not bring the people into the land of Canaan, as is written in the book of Numbers:

Jehovah said unto Moses and Aaron, Because ye have not believed in Me, and sanctified Me in the eyes of the sons of Israel, therefore ye shall not bring this congregation into the land which I have given them; these are the waters of Meribah, because the sons of Israel contended with Jehovah (Numbers 20:12-13; 27:14).

Aaron shall be gathered unto his people, and shall not come into the land which I have given to the sons of Israel, because ye rebelled against My mouth at the waters of Meribah (Numbers 20:24).

The same is said of Moses (Deuteronomy 32:50-51).

[5] That still representative Divine worship was instituted with that nation, was because representative worship could be instituted with any nation that had holy externals of worship, and worshiped almost idolatrously; for what is representative does not regard the person, but the thing (n. 1361), and it was the genius of that nation, beyond any other nation, to worship merely external things as holy and Divine, without any internal; as for instance to worship as deities their fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and afterward Moses and David, and moreover to account holy and as Divine, and to worship, every stone and every piece of wood that had been inaugurated in their Divine worship; as the arks, the tables therein, the lamp, the altar, the garments of Aaron, the Urim and Thummim, and afterward the temple. Of the Lord’s Providence there was then given a communication of the angels of heaven with man by means of such things. For there must needs be somewhere a church, or the representative of a church, in order that there may be communication of heaven with the human race; and as that nation, beyond any other nation, could make Divine worship consist in external things, and thus act the representative of a church, therefore that nation was taken.

[6] At that time communication with the angels in heaven was effected by means of representatives in the following way. Their external worship was communicated to angelic spirits who are simple, and who do not reflect upon internal things, but still are interiorly good. Such are they who in the Grand Man correspond to the outer skin. These pay no attention whatever to the internal of man, but only to his external. If this appears holy, they think holily of the internal also. The more interior angels of heaven saw in those spirits the things that were represented, consequently the heavenly and Divine things that corresponded; for they could be present with these spirits, and see those things; but not with the men except by means of the spirits. For angels dwell with men in things interior; but where there are no such things, they dwell in the interior things of simple spirits; for the angels have no interest in other than spiritual and heavenly things, which are the interior things contained in representatives. From these few words it can be seen how there could be communication with heaven by means of such a people. But see what has been previously shown on this subject, namely: That with the Jews the holy of worship was miraculously elevated into heaven quite apart from them (n. 4307); that whatever their quality might be, the descendants of Jacob could represent what is holy, provided they closely observed the rituals commanded (n. 3147, 3479, 3480, 3881, 4208, 4281, 4288, 4289, 4293, 4307, 4444, 4500, 4680, 4825, 4844, 4847, 4899, 4912, 6304, 6306, 7048, 7051, 8301).

(References: Arcana Coelestia 3479-3480, 4288-4289; Deuteronomy 4:16, Deuteronomy 33:8-9)

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Apocalypse Explained #331

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331. And people and nation, signifies who are of the Lord's spiritual church, and of His celestial church. This is evident from the signification of "people" and "nation" in the Word, "people" signifying those who are in spiritual good, thus those who are of the Lord's spiritual church, and "nation" those who are in celestial good, thus those who are of the Lord's celestial church. That there are two kingdoms into which the heavens are divided, namely, the celestial kingdom and the spiritual kingdom, and that those who are in the good of love to the Lord are in the celestial kingdom, and those who are in the good of charity towards the neighbor are in the spiritual kingdom, see in the work on Heaven and Hell, (n. 20-28). These two kingdoms, however, are not only in the heavens but also on the earth, and on the earth they are called the celestial church and the spiritual church. Few know what is signified in the Word specifically by a "people" or "peoples," and what by a "nation" or "nations." I will therefore present from the Word some passages where the two are named together, from which it will be clear that "people" and "nations" have distinct significations, for unless they had distinct significations they would not both be named together, as in the following passages.

(References: Revelation 5:9)


[2] In Isaiah:

The strong people shall glorify Thee, the city of the formidable nations shall fear Thee. Jehovah will swallow up in this mountain the faces of the covering, that covereth over all peoples, and the veil that is veiled over all nations (Isaiah 25:3, 7).

Here a distinction is made between "peoples" and "nations," because "peoples" signify those who are of the Lord's spiritual kingdom, and "nations" those who are of His celestial kingdom, thus those who are in spiritual good and those in celestial good. Spiritual good is the good of charity towards the neighbor, thus the good of faith, and celestial good is the good of love to the Lord, and thence the good of mutual love. The truth of this good is what is meant by "the city of formidable nations," for "city" signifies the doctrine of truth, or the truths of doctrine; "to swallow up the covering over all peoples, and the veil veiled over all nations," signifies to dispel the shade that has so covered the understanding that the truths are not seen or the goods perceived that pertain to heaven and the church.

(References: Isaiah 25:7-8)


[3] In the same:

Come near, ye nations, to hear; and hearken, ye peoples; let the earth hear, and the fullness thereof (Isaiah 34:1).

Because "nations" signify those who are in the good of love, and "peoples" those who are in the good of charity and in the truths of faith therefrom, it is said of the nations that they should "come near," and of the peoples that they should "hearken;" to "come near" signifies to be conjoined by love, and to "hearken" signifies to obey and to be instructed; it is therefore said, "let the earth hear, and the fullness thereof," "earth" signifying the church in respect to good, and "the fullness thereof" truths.

[4] In the same:

I Jehovah have called thee in righteousness, and I will hold thine hand and I will give thee for a covenant to the people, for a light of the nations (Isaiah 42:6).

In the same:

Bring forth the blind people that have eyes, and the deaf that have ears. Let all the nations be brought together, and let the peoples gather together (Isaiah 43:8-9).

In the same:

I have given him for a witness to the peoples, a prince and lawgiver to the nations (Isaiah 55:4).

In the same:

Thus said the Lord Jehovih, Behold, I will lift up Mine hand towards the nations, and lift up My standard towards the peoples (Isaiah 49:22).

In the same:

The peoples that walk in darkness have seen a great light. Thou hast multiplied the nation, thou hast made great to it gladness (Isaiah 9:2-3).

And in the same:

It shall be in that day that the root of Jesse, which standeth for an ensign of the peoples, the nations shall seek. And He shall lift up an ensign for the nations, and shall gather together the outcasts of Israel (Isaiah 11:10, 12).

All these things are said of the Lord; and "peoples" and "nations" mean all who are of His church; for all who are of the Lord's church are either of His celestial kingdom or of His spiritual kingdom; not any except those who are in these two kingdoms can possibly be of the church. Moreover, there are two things that constitute the church, good and truth, both from the Lord; "nations" mean those who are in good, and "peoples" those who are in truth; and, abstractly from persons, "nations" signify the goods of the church, and "peoples" its truths; "peoples" signify the truths of the church because spiritual good, or the good of charity towards the neighbor, in which those are who are meant by "peoples," in its essence is truth. (See Arcana Coelestia 8042, 10296; why it is so, n. 863, 875, 895, 927, 1023, 1043, 1044, 1555, 2256, 4328, 4493, 5113, 9596; thence what the distinction is between those who are of the celestial kingdom and those who are of the spiritual kingdom, n. 2088, 2669, 2708, 2715, 3235, 3240, 4788, 7068, 8521, 9277, 10295)

(References: Arcana Coelestia 1043-1044; Isaiah 11:10-12, Isaiah 55:4-5)


[5] In the same:

In that time a present unto Jehovah of Hosts shall be brought; a people distracted and plundered: and a nation meted out and trodden down, whose land the rivers have spoiled, to the place of the name of Jehovah of Hosts, to Mount Zion (Isaiah 18:2, 7).

This treats of the invitation of all to the church; therefore also "people" and "nation" are both mentioned. "Mount Zion" signifies the church, to which they are invited; "a people distracted and plundered" signifies those with whom truths have been taken away, changed, or perverted by those who are in the falsities of doctrine; "a nation meted out and trodden down, whose land the rivers have spoiled," signifies those with whom goods have been treated in like manner, "rivers" meaning falsities and reasonings therefrom.

[6] In Zechariah:

Yet there shall come peoples, and the inhabitants of great cities, to entreat the faces of Jehovah, and many peoples and numerous nations shall come to seek Jehovah of Hosts in Jerusalem (Zechariah 8:20-22).

Here, too, "peoples" and "nations" signify all who are of the Lord's church; "peoples" those who are of His spiritual church, and "nations" those who are of His celestial church. "Jerusalem," to which they shall come, is the church.

[7] In David:

Thou wilt set me for the head of the nations; a people I have not known shall serve me (Psalms 18:43).

In the same:

Jehovah will subdue the peoples under us, and the nations under our feet. God reigneth over the nations. The willing ones of the peoples are gathered together (Psalms 47:3, 8-9).

In the same:

That [Thy way] may be known on the earth, Thy salvation among all nations. The peoples shall confess Thee, O God: the nations shall be glad and shout for joy; for Thou shalt judge the peoples in uprightness, and shalt lead the nations into the land (Psalms 67:2-4).

Remember me, O Jehovah, in good pleasure towards Thy people; that I may be glad in the joy of Thy nations (Psalms 106:4-5).

I will confess Thee, O Lord, among the nations. I will sing psalms unto Thee among the peoples (Psalms 57:9; 108:3).

In these passages also "peoples" and "nations" are mentioned, by which are meant all who are in truths and goods. Moreover, the very words that are applied to peoples are words that are predicated of truths, and those applied to nations are those that are predicated of goods. That no other are meant by "nations" is evident also from the fact that these things were said by David, who was an enemy of the Canaanitish nations.

(References: Psalms 57:7-9, 108:1-3)


[8] In Luke:

Mine eyes have seen Thy salvation, which Thou hast prepared before the face of all peoples; a light for a revelation to the nations (Luke 2:30-32).

In Zephaniah:

The remnant of My people shall spoil them, and the remainder of My nation shall inherit them (Zephaniah 2:9).

In Moses:

When her two sons were struggling in her womb, Rebekah went to inquire of Jehovah, and Jehovah said unto her, Two nations are in thy womb, and two peoples shall be separated from thy bowels (Genesis 25:22-23).

Remember the days of the age, when the Most High gave to the nations an inheritance; when He separated the sons of man he set the bounds of the peoples according to the number of the sons of Israel (Deuteronomy 32:7-8).

"The sons of man" have the same signification as "peoples," namely, those who are in spiritual truths and goods; therefore it is said of them, "when He separated the sons of man He set the bounds of the peoples according to the number of the sons of Israel;" "the sons of Israel" signifying the spiritual church, and the "number" of them, or of the twelve tribes named from them, signifying all the truths and goods therein (see just above, n. 330); such therefore are called "peoples;" "to separate" them and "to set their bounds" signifies to alienate from falsities and to bestow truths; and "to give an inheritance to the nations" signifies heaven and conjunction with those who are in the good of love.

(References: The Apocalypse Explained 330)


[9] In Daniel:

All peoples, nations, and tongues shall worship Him; His dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and His kingdom that which shall not perish (Daniel 7:14).

This is said of the Lord; and "peoples" and "nations" mean all who are in truths and goods; and "all tongues" mean all of whatever doctrine or religion; for the Lord's church is universal, since it exists with all who are in the good of life, and who from their doctrine look to heaven, and thereby conjoin themselves to the Lord (of whom see Heaven and Hell 318-328). Because "nations" signify those who are in the good of love, and "peoples" those who are in the good of charity and in the truths of faith therefrom, it is said, "His dominion is an everlasting dominion, and His kingdom shall not pass away;" "dominion" in the Word is predicated of good, and "kingdom" of truth; for this reason the Lord is called "Lord" from Divine good, and "king" from Divine truth.

There are other passages besides these that might be quoted to prove that "peoples" signify those who are of the spiritual church, and "nations" those who are of the celestial church. So far those only have been presented in which "peoples" and "nations" are mentioned together; to these some shall be added in which "nations" alone are mentioned.

[10] In Isaiah:

Open the gates, that the righteous nation that keepeth faithfulness may enter in. Thou hast added to the nation, O Jehovah, Thou hast added to the nation; Thou hast been glorified: Thou hast removed all the ends of the earth (Isaiah 26:2, 15).

In David:

All the ends of the earth shall turn unto Jehovah; and all the families of the nations shall worship before Thee. For the kingdom is Jehovah's; and He it is that ruleth among the nations (Psalms 22:27-28).

In Isaiah:

The nations shall walk to Thy light, and kings to the brightness of Thy rising. Thy heart shall be enlarged, because the multitude of the sea shall turn unto Thee, the army of the nations shall come unto Thee (Isaiah 60:3, 5).

All nations shall see Thy righteousness, and all kings Thy glory (Isaiah 62:2).

In these passages "nations" and "peoples" are not mentioned together, but still in the last two "nations" and "kings" because "kings" signify the like as "peoples," namely, those who are in truths (see above, n. 31; and it is because "nations" signify those who are in good, and "Kings" those who are in truths, that it is said of the nations that they "shall see Thy righteousness," and of the kings that they shall "see Thy glory;" "righteousness" in the Word being predicated of good, and "glory" of truth. (That "righteousness" is predicated in the Word of Divine good, see Arcana Coelestia 2235, 9857; and "glory" of Divine truth, n. 4809, 5922, 8267, 8427, 9429.)

(References: Isaiah 60:11; The Apocalypse Explained 31)


[11] From the contrary sense it can yet be seen that "peoples" signify those who are in truths, and "nations" those who are in good; for in that sense "peoples" signify those who are in falsities, and "nations" those who are in evils, as in the following. In Isaiah:

O Assyrian, the rod of Mine anger, I will send him against a hypocritical nation, and against the people of My wrath will I command him (Isaiah 10:5-6).

In the same:

The voice of a multitude in the mountains; the voice of a tumult of the kingdoms of the nations gathered together. They come from a land afar off, from the end of the heavens, even Jehovah with the vessels of His indignation to destroy the whole land (Isaiah 13:4-5).

Jehovah that smiteth the peoples with a stroke not curable, that ruleth with anger the nations (Isaiah 14:6).

In the same:

At the noise of the tumult let the peoples flee away; and before Thine exaltation let the nations be dispersed (Isaiah 33:3).

In Jeremiah:

Behold, a people cometh from the land of the north, and a great nation shall be stirred up from the sides of the earth. They lay hold on the bow and spear; they are cruel, and have no mercy (Jeremiah 6:22-23).

In Ezekiel:

I will not cause thee to hear any more the calumny of the nations, and the reproach of the peoples thou shalt not bear any more (Ezekiel 36:15).

In David:

Thou makest us a byword among the nations, a shaking of the head among the peoples (Psalms 44:14).

In the same:

Jehovah bringeth the counsel of the nations to nought; He overthroweth the thoughts of the peoples (Psalms 33:10).

In these passages "peoples" mean those who are against the truths of the spiritual church, thus in falsities; and "nations" those who are against the goods of the celestial church, thus in evils. This is also the signification of the peoples and nations that were driven out of the land of Canaan. To this let what was said above n. 175 be added.

(References: Isaiah 11:10-12, Isaiah 25:7-8, Isaiah 55:4-5, Isaiah 60:11; Psalms 57:7-9; Revelation 5:9; The Apocalypse Explained 175)

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Apocalypse Explained 320, 340, 355, 365, 388, 400, 401, 431, 433, 453, 454, 518, 519, 625, 631, 657, 684, 693, 701, 706, 726, 741, 768, 803, 872, 881, 945, 1029, 1077, 1107, 1191


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