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Arcana Coelestia #9372

Arcana Coelestia (Potts translation)      

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

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John the Baptist 1

Elijah 1

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Reed shaken with the wind 1


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Arcana Coelestia #9093

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9093. And they shall divide the silver of it. That this signifies that the truth thereof shall be dissipated, is evident from the signification of “dividing,” as being to banish and dissipate (see n. 6360, 6361); and from the signification of “silver,” as being truth (n. 1551, 2048, 5658, 6112, 6914, 6917, 7999). That “to divide” denotes to dissipate, is because if those things which have been associated together are divided, they are also scattered, as he who divides his mind destroys it. For the mind of man is an association of two parts, one part being called the understanding, the other the will. He who divides these two parts scatters the things which belong to one part, for one part must live from the other; consequently the other also perishes. It is the same with him who divides truth from good, or what is the same, faith from charity. He who does this destroys both. In a word, all things which ought to be united in a one, if divided perish.

(References: Arcana Coelestia 6360-6361)


[2] This division is meant by the Lord’s words in Luke:

No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will prefer the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon (Luke 16:13).

That is, by faith serve the Lord, and by love the world; thus acknowledge truth, and do evil. He who does this has a divided mind, from which comes its destruction. From all this it is evident whence it is that “to divide” denotes to dissipate; as is also evident in Matthew:

The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he expecteth not, and in an hour when he knoweth not, and shall divide him, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites (Matthew 24:50-51); where “to divide” denotes to separate and remove from goods and truths (n. 4424), thus to dissipate.

(References: Luke 19:11-19, 22:24-27, 22:30)


[3] In Moses:

Cursed be their anger, for it was vehement; and their wrath, for it was hard. I will divide them in Jacob, and scatter them in Israel (Genesis 49:7); where Israel speaks prophetically of Simeon and Levi. By Simeon and Leviticus are there represented those who are in faith separate from charity (n. 6352), by Jacob and Israel the church external and internal, and also the external and internal man (n. 4286, 4598, 5973, 6360, 6361). “To divide them in Jacob” denotes to expel them from the external church; and “to scatter them in Israel” denotes from the internal church; thus to dissipate the goods and the truths of the church appertaining to them.

(References: Arcana Coelestia 6360-6361)


[4] That “dividing” has this signification is also plain from the words written on the wall when Belshazzar king of Babel, together with his lords, his wives, and his concubines, drank wine from the vessels of gold and of silver which belonged to the temple that was at Jerusalem. The writing was:

Numbered, numbered, weighed, and divided (Daniel 5:2-4, 25-28); where “divided” means separated from the kingdom. In this passage it is plain how all things were at that time representative. In it is described the profanation of good and truth, which is signified by “Babel” (that Babel” denotes profanation, see n. 1182, 1283, 1295, 1304-1308, 1321, 1322, 1326); “vessels of gold and of silver” denote the goods of love and the truths of faith from the the Lord, (n. 1551, 1552, 5658, 6914, 6917). Profanation is signified by “drinking therefrom, and at the same time praising the gods of gold, of silver, of brass, of iron, of wood, and of stone,” as we read in the fourth verse of the chapter, which denote evils and falsities in a series (n. 4402, 4544, 7873, 8941). By the “temple at Jerusalem” from which the vessels came, is signified in the supreme sense the Lord, in the representative sense His kingdom and church (n. 3720). The kingdom of Belshazzar being “divided” signified the dissipation of good and truth, and he himself being “slain that night” signified the loss of the life of truth and good, thus damnation; for “to be divided” denotes to be dissipated; “a King” denotes the truth of good (n. 1672, 2015, 2069, 3009, 3670, 4575, 4581, 4966, 5044, 5068, 6148); the like is signified by “kingdom” (n. 1672, 2547, 4691); “to be slain” denotes to be deprived of the life of truth and good (n. 3607, 6767, 8902); and the “night” in which he was slain denotes a state of evil and falsity (n. 2353, 7776, 7851, 7870, 7947). From this it is plain that all things there were representative.

(References: Arcana Coelestia 1321-1322, 1551-1552; Daniel 5:25, Daniel 5:28)


[5] We read in the following passages:

They divided My garments among them, and upon My vesture did they cast a lot (Psalms 22:18).

They divided His garments, casting a lot; that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet (Matthew 27:35).

The soldiers took His garments, and made four parts; and the tunic, the tunic was without seam, woven from the top throughout. They said therefore, Let us not divide it, but cast lots for it, whose it shall be; that the Scripture might be fulfilled (John 19:23-24).

He who reads these words and knows nothing of the internal sense of the Word, is not aware that anything secret lies hidden in them, when yet in each word there is a Divine secret. The secret was that Divine truths had been dissipated by the Jews, for the Lord was the Divine truth; and hence He is called “the Word” (John 1). “The Word” denotes Divine truth; His garments represented truths in the external form; and His tunic, truths in the internal form; the division of the garments represented the dissipation of the truths of faith by the Jews. (That “garments” denote truths in the external form, see n. 2576, 5248, 5954, 6918; also that “a tunic” denotes truth in the internal form, n. 4677.) Truths in the external form are such as are those of the Word in the literal sense; but truths in the internal form are such as are those of the Word in the spiritual sense. The division of the garments into four parts signified total dissipation, in like manner as the division in Zechariah 14:4, and in other passages; likewise the division into two parts, as we read of the veil of the temple (Matthew 27:51; Mark 15:38). The rending of the rocks also at that time (Matthew 27:51) represented the dissipation of all things of faith, for a “rock” denotes the Lord as to faith, consequently it denotes faith from the Lord.

(References: Daniel 5:25, Daniel 5:28; Exodus 21:35; John 1:1)

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The Unjust Steward 1

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Apocalypse Explained #195

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195. (v. 4) Thou hast a few names even in Sardis, which have not defiled their garments. That this signifies those whose life has been moral from a spiritual origin, through having applied the knowledges of truth and good from the Word to the uses of their life, is evident from the signification of name, as denoting the quality of the state of a man's life (concerning which see above, n. 148) - here, therefore, names signify men who are of such a quality - and from the signification of the church in Sardis, as being those whose life is moral but not spiritual, because they lightly esteem the knowledges of truth and good from the Word (concerning which also see above, n. 148) - here, however, those are meant who live morally from a spiritual origin, for it is said, Who have not defiled their garments - and from the signification of garments, as denoting the scientific truths (scientifica vera) and knowledges (cognitiones) in the natural man, of which we shall speak presently. Hence by not defiling their garments is signified that they live morally not for the sake of self and the world, that is, for the sake of the body only and its life, but for the sake of the Lord and of heaven, that is, for the sake of the soul and its life. It is therefore evident that by these words, "Thou hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments," are signified those who are of such a quality that they live morally from a spiritual origin, by applying the knowledges of truth and good from the Word to their life.

(References: Revelation 3:4; The Apocalypse Explained 148, The Apocalypse Explained 182)


[2] But because few know what it is thus to live, and what it is to apply the knowledges of truth and good from the Word to the uses of life, the matter shall therefore be explained. Man lives morally from a spiritual origin, when he lives from religion, thus when he thinks, when what is evil, insincere or unjust occurs to him, that it ought not to be done because it is contrary to the Divine laws. He who does this, since he abstains from what is wrong on account of the Divine laws, procures to himself spiritual life, and then his moral life is from the spiritual. For by such thought and faith he communicates with the angels of heaven, and by such communication his internal spiritual man is opened, the mind of which is a higher mind, being such as the angels of heaven have; and he is thence filled with heavenly intelligence and wisdom.

It is therefore evident that to live morally from a spiritual origin, is to act from religion, and within the church from the Word. For those who thus live from religion and from the Word, are raised up above their natural man, and thus above their proprium, and are led by the Lord by means of heaven. This is why they possess faith, the fear of God and conscience, and also the spiritual affection of truth, which is an affection of the knowledges of truth and good derived from the Word; for to them these are Divine laws, according to which they live. Such a moral life, many of the Gentiles live; for they think that evil ought not to be done because it is contrary to their religion. This is the reason why so many of them are saved.

[3] But, on the other hand, to live a moral life which is not from religion, but only from the fear of law in the world, from the fear of the loss of reputation of honour, and of gain, is not from a spiritual, but from a natural origin, and therefore those who live in this way have no communication with heaven. And because they think insincerely and unjustly of their neighbour, although they speak and act otherwise, the internal of their spiritual man is closed, and only the internal natural man opened; which being opened they are in the light of the world, but not in the light of heaven; therefore they lightly esteem Divine and heavenly things, and some deny them, believing nature and the world to be everything.

From these considerations it is now evident what it is to lead a moral life from a spiritual origin, and what it is to lead it from a natural origin. (But these things may be seen expounded in clearer light in the work, Heaven, and Hell, n. 528-535.) Concerning those whose life is moral from a natural origin only, it is said that they defile their garments, for by garments is meant that which is outside the man himself and invests him, thus his natural man with what it contains, which are scientifics (scientifica) and knowledges (cognitiones); these, when from the Word, are defiled by the fact that he earns and retains them solely for the sake of reputation, that he may be accounted learned and well informed, or that he may thereby acquire honours and gain wealth; were it not for these ends he would care nothing about them. Thus are knowledges from the Word polluted and defiled by the loves of self and of the world, for they have their abode together with the evils and falsities that flow forth from these loves as from their own founts.

(References: Heaven and Hell 528-535)


[4] It was said above, that a man becomes spiritual by means of knowledges of good and truth from the Word applied to the uses of life; but why he becomes spiritual by means of those knowledges which are from the Word, and not by any other, shall now be explained. All things in the Word are Divine, and this because they contain in them a spiritual sense: and because by means of that sense they communicate with heaven, and with the angels there, therefore, when a man possesses knowledges from the Word, and applies them to his life, he has communication through them with heaven, and by that communication he becomes spiritual; for a man becomes spiritual by the fact that he is in similar or correspondent truths with the angels of heaven. It is said in correspondent truths, because all things in the sense of the letter of the Word are correspondences, for they correspond to the truths which the angels have. But knowledges from other books which teach, and by various things confirm the doctrinals of the church, do not bring about communication with heaven, unless those knowledges are from the Word. These knowledges do open a communication if they are properly understood, and are not applied to faith alone, but to life. That this is the case, any one may know from this consideration that the Word in itself is Divine, and that which is Divine in itself may become Divine in man if he applies it to life. By its becoming Divine in man is to be understood that the Lord can therein have His abode with him (John xiv. 23), thus can dwell with him in that which is His own. (That the Lord dwells in His own both with men and angels, and not in their proprium, may be seen in the work, Heaven and Hell, n. 12). And the Lord dwells in His own when in those things with man which are from the Word; for the Lord is the Word (John i. 1, 2, 14); and the words which He himself spoke, that is, which are in the Word, are "spirit and life" (John vi. 63, 68; xii. 50).

(References: Heaven and Hell 12; John 1:1-2, John 1:14, John 6:63, 6:68, John 12:50, 14:23)


[5] The signification of garments as denoting those things that are in the natural man, which are scientific truths, or falsities, or knowledges (scientifica vera aut falsa aut cognitiones) is derived from the spiritual world. For there all, however many they are, appear clothed according to their moral life. Those, therefore, whose life has been moral from a spiritual origin appear clothed in shining-white garments, as it were of fine linen; but those whose moral life has been from a natural origin alone appear according to its quality: those who have polluted their life with evils and falsities appear in garments of a dark colour, vile, torn and foul to the sight (concerning which see in the work, Heaven and Hell, n. 177-182). Hence then it is that garments in the Word signify truths from good, and, in the opposite sense, falsities from evil, and both the one and the other in the natural man, in which truths and falsities are called scientifics and knowledges.

(References: Heaven and Hell 177-182)


[6] That garments in the Word signify truths or falsities, is quite evident in the following passages. In Isaiah:

"Awake, awake, put on thy strength, O Zion, put on the garments of thy gracefulness, O Jerusalem; for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean" (lii. 1).

Zion in the Word signifies the celestial kingdom of the Lord, thus also the celestial church, and Jerusalem the spiritual kingdom and the spiritual church. (What the celestial kingdom is, and what the spiritual kingdom, may be seen in the work, Heaven and Hell, n. 20-28.) The garments of gracefulness which Jerusalem should put on are Divine truths; the uncircumcised and the unclean, which shall no more come into her, are those who are in evils and falsities.

(References: Heaven and Hell 20-28; Isaiah 52:1)


[7] In Ezekiel:

Jerusalem, "I have clothed thee with embroidery; I have shod thee with badger's skin, I have begirt thee with fine linen and adorned thee with ornament, and I have put bracelets upon thine hands and a chain on thy throat (guttur), and a jewel upon thy nose, and ear-rings upon thine ears, yea, a crown of ornament upon thy head. Thus wast thou decked with gold and silver, and thy garments fine linen, silk and embroidery, whence thou wast made exceedingly beautiful, and didst prosper into a kingdom. But thou hast taken of thy garments, and hast made to thee variegated heights, that thou mightest commit whoredom upon them; thou hast also taken the garments of thy embroidery, and hast covered" images of a male, with which thou hast committed whoredom (xvi. 10-14, 16-18).

Here the church is described as to its quality when it is first established by the Lord, the garments mentioned signify truths from good; embroidery is scientific truth (verum scientificum), fine linen and silk signify truths from a celestial origin. The bracelets, the chain, the jewel, the ear-rings and the crown, are decorations which signify things spiritual of various kinds; the gold and silver with which she was decked, signify the good of love and its truth. In what follows is described the same church perverted by taking of the garments, and making to herself variegated heights, whereby are signified truths falsified and by taking the garments of embroidery and covering images of a male, is signified that they applied the truths of the sense of the letter of the Word to confirm falsities, so as to give them the appearance of truths. To commit whoredom with them, and under them, signifies to contrive doctrine and worship from falsities. (That this is to commit whoredom, may be seen above, n. 141, 161. That Jerusalem is the church where there is true doctrine, may be seen, Arcana Coelestia, n. 402, 3654, 9166. That embroidery is scientific truth, n. 9688. That fine linen is truth from a celestial origin, n. 5319, 9469. That bracelets are truths and goods of the church, n. 3103, 3105. That a necklace, is a representative of the conjunction of the interiors and exteriors, n. 5320; that jewels for the nose, and ear-rings, are representatives of perception and obedience, n. 4551. That a crown denotes wisdom, see above, n. 126. That gold is the good of love, see Arcana Coelestia, n. 1551, 1552, 5658, 6914, 6917, 9510, 9874, 9881; that silver is truth from that good, n. 1551, 1552, 2954, 5658; that variegated heights are truths falsified, n. 796, 4005; that a male or the masculine is truth, n. 749, 2016, 4005, 7838; hence images of a male are appearances of truth.)

(References: Arcana Coelestia 402, 749, 796, Arcana Coelestia 1551-1552, 2046, Arcana Coelestia 2954, 3103, 3105, Arcana Coelestia 3654, Arcana Coelestia 4005, Arcana Coelestia 4551, 5319, 5320, 5658, Arcana Coelestia 6914, 6917, Arcana Coelestia 7838, Arcana Coelestia 9166, Arcana Coelestia 9469, 9510, Arcana Coelestia 9688, Arcana Coelestia 9874, 9881; Ezekiel 16:10-13, 16:10-18, 16:16-18; Isaiah 15:3; The Apocalypse Explained 126, 141, The Apocalypse Explained 161)


[8] In the same:

"Fine linen in broidered work from Egypt was thy spreading forth; blue and crimson from the isles of Elisha was thy covering, Syria was thy merchant in crimson, and broidered work, and fine linen, with the chrysoprasus. Dedan was thy merchant with garments of liberty for the chariot; Asshur and Chilmad with balls of blue and of embroidery, and with treasures of precious garment" (xxvii. 7, 16, 20, 23, 24).

Here Tyre and her merchandises are treated of, and by Tyre are signified the knowledges (cognitiones) of truth and good, and by merchandise and trading are signified procuring and communicating those knowledges; by crimson and blue is signified the celestial love of good and truth; by Egypt the Scientific of the natural man, and the same by embroidery. By Syria is signified the church as to the knowledges (cognitiones) of good and truth, and by Asshur the Rational of that church. By Dedan are signified those who are in the knowledges (cognitiones) of celestial things. It is therefore evident that by the merchandise of Tyre, which is treated of in the whole of this chapter, is not meant natural merchandise, but that by all things there mentioned are signified spiritual things, which must be procured, stored up in the mind, and communicated. (That Tyre signifies the knowledges of good and truth may be seen, Arcana Coelestia, n. 1201. That Egypt signifies the Scientific of the natural man, n. 1164, 1165, 1186, 1462, 5700, 5702, 6015, 6651, 6679, 6682, 6683, 6692, 7296, 9340, 9391. That Syria denotes the church as to the knowledges of truth and good, n. 1232, 1234, 3664, 3680, 4112. That Dedan signifies those who are in the knowledges of celestial things, n. 3240, 3241. That Asshur denotes the Rational thence derived, n. 119, 1186. That crimson denotes the celestial love of good, n. 9467. That blue denotes the celestial love of truth, n. 9466, 9687, 9833; so also does chrysoprasus, n. 9898. The signification of fine linen and embroidery may be seen just above.)

(References: Arcana Coelestia 119, Arcana Coelestia 1164-1165, 1186, 1201, 1232, 1234, 1462, Arcana Coelestia 3240-3241, Arcana Coelestia 3664, 3680, Arcana Coelestia 4112, Arcana Coelestia 5700, 5702, 6015, 6651, 6679, 6682-6683, 6692, Arcana Coelestia 7296, Arcana Coelestia 9340, 9391, 9466, 9467, Arcana Coelestia 9687, Arcana Coelestia 9833, 9868; Ezekiel 27:7, 27:16, 27:20, 27:23-24)


[9] Again, in David:

"The king's daughter is all glorious within, her clothing is embroidered with gold. She shall be brought unto the king in embroidery" (Ps. xlv. 13, 14).

By the king's daughter is signified the spiritual affection of truth, and hence the church from those who are in that affection; the king signifies the Lord as to Divine truth; clothing embroidered with gold signifies intelligence and wisdom from that truth; the embroidery in which she should be brought to the king signifies the knowledges of truth. (That daughter signifies the affection of truth, and the church therefrom, may be seen, Arcana Coelestia, n. 2362, 2623, 3373, 3963, 4257, 6729, 6775, 6779, 8649, 9055, 9807. That king signifies the Lord as to Divine truth, may be seen above, n. 31.)

(References: Arcana Coelestia 2362, 2623, Arcana Coelestia 3373, Arcana Coelestia 3963, Arcana Coelestia 4257, Arcana Coelestia 6729, 6775, 6779, Arcana Coelestia 8649, 9055, Arcana Coelestia 9807; Psalms 45:13-14; The Apocalypse Explained 31)


[10] In the second book of Samuel:

"Daughters of Israel, weep over Saul, who clothed you in scarlet with dainty things, who put on ornaments of gold upon your apparel" (i. 24).

This is the lamentation of David over Saul, which he wrote to teach the sons of Judah the bow (verse 18): by a bow is signified truth combating against falsities (see Arcana Coelestia, n. 2686, 2709). By Saul as a king, is signified that truth; by the sons of Judah are signified those who are in truths from good; by clothing the daughters of Israel in scarlet, and by putting ornaments of gold upon their apparel, is signified to impart intelligence and wisdom to those who are in the spiritual affection of truth.

(References: 2 Samuel 1:18, 1:24; Arcana Coelestia 2686, 2709)


[11] In Matthew:

"When the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment. And he said unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither, not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless. Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and cast him into outer darkness" (xxii. 11-13).

By a wedding garment is signified the intelligence of the spiritual man, which is from the knowledges (cognitiones) of truth and good; but by him who had not on a wedding garment is signified a hypocrite, who by a moral life feigns a spiritual, when yet it is merely natural. To bind hand and foot, signifies deprivation of knowledges from the Word, by which such a man has counterfeited the spiritual man; to be cast into outer darkness signifies amongst those who are in falsities from evil; for outer darkness signifies falsities from evils.

(References: Matthew 22:11-13)


[12] In Zephaniah:

"I will visit upon the princes, and upon the sons of the king, and upon all who are clothed with the garments of the alien" (i. 8).

Princes and king's sons signify those who are in truths, and, in the opposite sense, as here, those who are in falsities; these are said to be clothed with the garments of the alien, because a garment signifies falsity, and an alien those who are out of the church, and do not acknowledge its truth.

(References: Zephaniah 1:8)


[13] In Matthew:

"Beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep's clothing; inwardly they are ravening wolves" (vii. 15).

False prophets in sheep's clothing who inwardly are ravening wolves, are those who teach falsities as if they were truths, and in appearance live morally, but who, when they are left to themselves, think of nothing but themselves and the world, and study to deprive others of truths.

(References: Matthew 7:15)


[14] In John:

Jesus said to Peter "When thou wast younger, thou girdedst thyself, and walkedst whither thou wouldest; but when thou shalt be old, thou shalt stretch forth thine hands, and another shall gird thee, and lead thee whither thou wouldest not" (xxi. 18).

The spiritual signification of these words may be seen above (n. 9); which is, that by Peter is meant the faith of the church; by his being younger and girding himself and walking whither he would is meant the faith of the church at its beginning when its members are in the good of charity, that they then think from the spiritual man concerning the truths of the church, that is, from their own spirit, thus from the spiritual affection of truth, which is from freedom. But by Peter, when he should be old, stretching forth his hands, and another girding him is meant the faith of the church at its end, when faith would be without charity, that then they would think nothing concerning the truths of the church from themselves, but from others, thus from doctrine only, and not from the Word, which state respectively is a state of servitude. For to believe what another says is servile, but to believe what one thinks oneself from the Word is freedom, according to the words of the Lord in John,

"If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples. And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free" (viii. 31, 32).

(References: John 8:31-32, John 21:18; The Apocalypse Explained 9)


[15] In Luke:

"No man putteth a piece of a new garment upon an old; otherwise, the new maketh a rent, and the piece that was taken out of the new agreeth not with the old. And no man putteth new wine into old wineskins; else the new wine will burst the skins, and be spilled, and the skins will perish" (v. 36-38; Matt. ix. 16, 17; Mark ii. 21, 22).

Because a garment signifies truth, therefore the Lord compared the truths of the former church, which was a church representative of spiritual things, to a piece of an old garment, and the truths of the New Church, which were essentially spiritual truths, to a piece of a new garment: He also compared them to wine-skins, because by wine in like manner is signified truth, and by skins the knowledges which contain truth. (That wine in the Word signifies truth, may be seen in The Doctrine of the New Jerusalem, n. 219.)

(References: Luke 5:36-38, 5:36-37; Mark 2:21-22; Matthew 9:16-17; The New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine 219)


[16] From these considerations it is now evident what is signified by garments in other parts of the Word, where they are often mentioned; as in the following passages in the Apocalypse:

"Upon the thrones four-and-twenty elders sitting, clothed in white garments" (iv. 4).

Again,

The armies of him sitting upon the white horse "followed him, clothed in fine linen, white and clean" (xix. 14).

Again,

Those who stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, were "clothed in white robes" (vii. 9).

Again,

The seven angels came out of the temple, "clothed in linen clean and shining" (xv. 6).

Again,

"And white robes were given unto every one of those" who were under the altar (vi. 11).

Again,

"Buy of me gold and white garments" (iii. 18).

(References: Ezekiel 18:16; Revelation 3:18, 4:4, 6:11, 7:9, 15:6, Revelation 19:14)


[17] In Ezekiel:

"Let him give his bread to the hungry, and let him cover the naked with a garment" (xviii. 16).

To give bread to the hungry in the spiritual sense is from the good of charity to instruct those who desire to obtain truths; to cover the naked with a garment, signifies, to treat in the same manner those who are not in truth. In the same:

The enemies "shall strip thee of thy garments, and shall take the jewels of thine adorning" (xxiii. 26).

And in Zechariah:

"Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood thus before the angel, who said unto those that stood before him, Take away the filthy garments from upon him. And he said, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from upon thee, in clothing thee with changed garments" (iii. 3, 4, 5).

In Lamentations:

"They have wandered blind in the streets, they are polluted with blood, what they cannot, they touch with their garments" (iv. 14).

From the signification of garments it can be known what is meant by several statutes amongst the sons of Israel; as

That they should not be clothed with mixed garments (Levit. xix. 19; Deut. xxii. 11);

That a woman should not put on the armour of a man, nor a man be clothed with the garments of a woman (Deut. xxii. 5)

That the garments should be washed that they might be purified, and thus sanctified (Exod. xix. 14; Levit. xi. 25, 28, 40: xiv. 8, 9; Numb. xix. 11 to the end),

and elsewhere;

That in mourning for their transgression against Divine truths they should put off their garments and put on sackcloth (Isa. xv. 3; xxii. 12; xxxvii. 1, 2; Jer. iv. 8; vi. 26; xlviii. 37; xlix. 3; Lam. ii. 10; Ezek. xxvii. 31; Amos viii. 10; Jonah iii. 5, 6, 8):

And that they should rend their garments (Isa. xxxvii. 1, and elsewhere).

It may also be known what is signified

By the disciples laying their garments upon the she-ass and the colt when the Lord was going to Jerusalem, and the people then strawing their garments in the way (Matt. xxi. 7, 8, 9; Mark xi. 7, 8; Luke xix. 35, 36);

which may be seen explained above (n. 31).

(References: Amos 8:10; Deuteronomy 22:5, 22:11; Exodus 19:14; Ezekiel 18:16, 23:26, Ezekiel 27:31; Isaiah 15:3, Isaiah 22:12, 37:1, 37:1-2; Jeremiah 4:8, 6:26, 48:37, 49:3; Jonah 3:5-6, 3:8; Lamentations 2:10, 4:14; Leviticus 11:25, 11:28, 11:40, 14:8-9, 14:8, 19:19; Luke 19:35-36; Mark 11:7-8; Matthew 21:7-9; Numbers 19:11-22; The Apocalypse Explained 31; Zechariah 3:3-5)


[18] The reason why garments signify truths is, that the light of heaven is Divine truth proceeding from the Lord as the Sun there; and everything that exists in the heavens exists from that light, as is the case also with the garments in which the angels are seen clothed. Hence it is

That the raiment of the angels who sat at the sepulchre of the Lord was "white as snow" (Matt. xxviii. 3);

And that their garments were shining (Luke xxiv. 4).

(That the garments in which the angels are seen clothed correspond to their intelligence, and that their intelligence is according to their reception of Divine truth from the Lord, may be seen in the work, Heaven and Hell, n. 177-182; and that Divine truth proceeding from the Lord is light in heaven, n. 126-135.) It is therefore evident that garments, when spoken of the Lord, signify the Divine truth proceeding from Him; and because Divine truth is signified, the Word is also signified; for the Word is Divine truth from the Lord on earth and in the heavens. This was represented by the garments of the Lord when He was transfigured before Peter, James and John, concerning which it is thus written in the Evangelists:

When Jesus was transfigured "his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light" (Matt. xvii. 2);

And his raiment was "white, glistering" (Luke ix. 29);

And "his raiment became exceeding white as snow; so as no fuller on earth can white them" (Mark ix. 3).

The like is said of the Ancient of Days, in Daniel:

"The Ancient of Days did sit, whose garment was white as snow" (vii. 9).

The Ancient of Days is the Lord from eternity. Because light is Divine truth, and this is signified by garments when the Lord is spoken of, therefore it is said in David,

Jehovah "covereth himself with light as with a garment" (Ps. civ. 2).

(References: Daniel 7:9; Heaven and Hell 177-182; Luke 9:29, Luke 24:4; Mark 9:3; Matthew 17:2, Matthew 28:3; Psalms 45:8, Psalms 104:2; The Apocalypse Explained 126-135)


[19] From these considerations it is evident what is signified by the garments of the Lord elsewhere in the Word. As in David:

"All thy garments are anointed with myrrh, and aloes, and cassia" (Ps. xlv. 7, 8);

where the Lord is treated of. In Moses:

"He washed his garment in wine, and his covering in the blood of grapes" (Gen. xlix. 11).

This is also spoken of the Lord. Wine and blood of grapes signify Divine truth. Because the garments of the Lord signified Divine truth, therefore also

Those who touched the border of His garment were healed (see Matt. ix. 20, 21; Mark v. 27, 28, 30; vi. 56; Luke viii. 44).

In Isaiah:

"Who is this that cometh from Edom, with garments sprinkled from Bozra? this that is honourable in his apparel? Wherefore art thou red as to thy garment, and thy garments like those of him that treadeth in the wine press? Their victory is sprinkled upon my garments, and I have polluted all my raiment" (lxiii. 1-3).

These things also are said of the Lord. By garments here is signified the Word, which, as has been said, is Divine truth from the Lord on earth and in the heavens; the violence offered to Divine truth, or the Word, by those who formed the church, is described by the Lord's garment being red as that of one treading in the wine-press, and by victory being sprinkled upon His garments, and by His raiment being polluted.

(References: Genesis 49:11; Isaiah 63:1-3; Luke 8:44; Mark 5:27-28, 5:30, 6:56; Matthew 9:20-21; Psalms 45:7-8)


[20] Again in the Apocalypse, it is said,

He who sat on the white horse "was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called the Word of God" (xix. 13).

Here it is clearly said that He who sat on the white horse was called the Word of God; and that the same is the Lord is evident, for it immediately follows, concerning Him,

"He hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, King of Kings, and Lord of Lords" (ver. 16).

It is therefore the Word in the letter which is signified by the vesture dipped in blood, because violence was done to it, but not to the Word in the spiritual sense: to this violence could not be done, since they knew nothing about it.

(References: Revelation 19:13, Revelation 19:16)


[21] That violence was done to the Word in the sense of the letter, but not to the Word in the spiritual sense, is also signified by the soldiers dividing the garments of the Lord, but not His tunic, of which it is thus written in John:

"The soldiers took his garments, and made four parts, to every soldier a part; and also his tunic. Now the tunic was without seam, woven from the top throughout. They said therefore among themselves, Let us not rend it, but let us cast lots for it, whose it shall be. These things therefore the soldiers did" (xix. 23, 24).

And, in David:

"They parted my garments, and cast lots upon my vesture" (Ps. xxii. 18).

By the Lord's garments which they parted is signified the Word in the letter; by his tunic the Word in the spiritual sense; by soldiers are signified those who belong to the church who fight on behalf of Divine truth; and hence it is said, These things therefore the soldiers did.

(That tunic signifies Divine truth, or the Word, in the spiritual sense, may be seen, Arcana Coelestia, n. 9826, 9942; that soldiers signify those who belong to the church, and enter into warfare for Divine truth, may be seen above, n. 64, at the end, where these things are more fully explained.) It should be known that the particular things related in the Evangelist concerning the Lord's passion involve and signify how the church, at that time, which was amongst the Jews, treated Divine truth, thus the Word, for this was Divine truth with them, and the Lord was the Word, because He was Divine truth (see John i. 1, 2, 14); but what those particulars involve and signify can be known from only the internal sense. In this place it is explained only what the garments of the Lord signified, because the signification of garments is the subject here treated of, namely, that they signify truths, and when said of the Lord, Divine truth.

(References: Arcana Coelestia 9826, Arcana Coelestia 9942; John 1:1-2, John 1:14, John 19:23-24; Psalms 22:18; The Apocalypse Explained 64)


[22] Similarly the things signified by the garments of the Lord are also signified by the garments of Aaron and his sons, because they represented the Lord as to Divine good, and their garments, the Lord as to Divine truth. (But these things may be seen explained and shown in Arcana Coelestia; as that Aaron represented the Lord as to Divine good, n. 9806, 9946, 10,017; also what each of the garments signified, as the breast-plate, the ephod, the cloak, the coat wrought with chequer work, the mitre and the belt, n. 9814, 9823-9828, and the following, numbers.)

(References: Arcana Coelestia 9806, Arcana Coelestia 9814, 9823-9828, Arcana Coelestia 9946, 10017; Luke 5:36-38; Psalms 45:8; Revelation 19:13-14)

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References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 181, 187, 198, 240, 243, 271, 328, 329, 356, 359, 375, 386, 401, 412, 452, 475, 519, 627, 637, 655, 717, 805, 820, 922, 951, 1007, 1222

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