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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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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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Apocalypse Explained #329

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329. Since it is said, "thou didst redeem us to God in thy blood," and since this is understood within the church entirely according to the sense of the letter, and not according to any spiritual sense, I will also show that "blood" does not mean blood, or the Lord's suffering on the cross, but Divine truth proceeding from the Lord, and the reception of it by man; thus that "thou didst redeem us in Thy blood" means that He has delivered and freed from hell those who acknowledge Him, and receive Divine truth from Him (as was said above, n. 328. In illustration of this matter I will cite the following. Because all things that were commanded in the Israelitish Church were representative of things celestial and spiritual, and not the least thing was not so, it was also commanded, when the paschal supper was first instituted:

That they shall take of the blood, and put it on the two side posts and on the lintel upon the houses wherein they shall eat [the paschal lamb]; and the blood shall be for you for a sign upon the houses where ye are; and when I see the blood I will pass over you, nor shall there be a plague upon you from the destroyer when I shall smite the land of Egypt. And further: Ye shall take a bunch of hyssop, and dip it in the blood that is in the basin, and shall touch the lintel and the two side posts with the blood that is in the basin; and not a man of you shall go out of the entrance of his house until the morning. And Jehovah will pass through to smite Egypt; and when he shall see the blood upon the lintel and upon the two side posts, Jehovah will pass over the door, and will not suffer the smiter to come into your houses to strike you (Exodus 12:7, 13, 22-23).

He who does not know that there is a spiritual sense in the Word believes that "blood" here signifies the Lord's blood upon the cross; but this is not at all the meaning in heaven; but to the angels there the paschal supper here described has a like meaning as the holy supper instituted by the Lord, in which, in place of the paschal lamb, there are the bread and the wine; and the Lord then said that the bread was His flesh and the wine was His blood; and everyone knows, or may know, that bread and wine are what nourish the body, bread as food and wine as drink, and that in the Word, which in its bosom is spiritual, these things also must be spiritually understood, "bread" standing for all spiritual food, and "wine" for all spiritual drink.

(References: Revelation 5:9; The Apocalypse Explained 328)


[2] Spiritual food is all the good that is communicated and given to man by the Lord, and spiritual drink is all the truth that is communicated and given to man by the Lord. These two, namely, good and truth, or love and faith, make man spiritual; it is said, or love and faith, because all good is of love, and all truth is of faith. From this it can be seen that "bread" means the Divine good of the Lord's Divine love, and in reference to man, this good received by him; also that "wine" means the Divine truth that proceeds from the Divine good of the Lord's Divine love, and in reference to man, this truth received by him. Since the Lord says that His flesh is bread, and His blood is wine, it can be seen that "the Lord's flesh" means the Divine good of His Divine love, and "to eat" it means to receive it, and make it one's own, and thus to be conjoined to the Lord; and that "the Lord's blood" means the Divine truth that proceeds from the Divine good of His Divine love, and that "drinking" it means to receive that truth and make it one's own, and thus be conjoined to the Lord.

[3] Again, spiritual nourishment is from the good and truth that proceed from the Lord, as all nourishment of the body is from food and drink; their correspondence also is from this, which is such that where anything of food, or that serves for food, is mentioned in the Word, good is meant, and where anything of drink, or that serves for drink, is mentioned, truth is meant. From this it can be seen that the "blood" from the Paschal Lamb, which the sons of Israel were commanded to put upon the two side posts and upon the lintel of their houses, means Divine truth proceeding from the Lord; this, when received in faith and life, protects man against the evils that rise up out of hell; for in His Divine truth the Lord is with man, for this is the Lord's own with man, yea, it is Himself with man. Who that thinks from sound reason cannot see that the Lord is with a man not in His blood, but in His Divine, which is the good of love and the good of faith received by man. (But what the particulars here signify, namely, "the two side posts" and "the lintel," "the destroyer" and "smiter," and "Egypt," and many other things in this chapter, can be seen in Arcana Coelestia, where they are explained.)

[4] From what has now been said, without further explanation, the significance of the Lord's words when He instituted the Holy Supper is evident:

As they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed, broke, and gave to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is My body. And He took the cup, and having given thanks, He gave to them, saying, Drink of it, all of you; for this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many. I say unto you that I will not drink henceforth of this product of the vine until that day when I shall drink it with you in the kingdom of God (Matthew 26:26-29; Mark 14:22-25; Luke 22:15-20).

As "wine" means Divine truth nourishing the spiritual life, therefore the Lord says to them, "I say unto you that I will not drink henceforth of this product of the vine until that day when I shall drink it with you new in the kingdom of God," which shows clearly that something spiritual is meant, for He says that "He is to drink with them," and "in the kingdom of God," or in heaven, and also that "He is to eat" with them of the Paschal Lamb there (Luke 22:16).

[5] What has now been said also makes clear what is signified by these words of the Lord:

The bread that I will give is My flesh. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink His blood, ye have not life in you. He that eateth My flesh and drinketh My blood hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is truly food, and My blood is truly drink. He that eateth My flesh and drinketh My blood abideth in Me, and I in him. This is the bread that cometh down out of heaven (John 6:51-58).

That the Lord's "flesh" is Divine good, and His "blood" Divine truth, both of them from Him, can be seen from this, that these are what nourish the soul; it is therefore said, "My flesh is truly food, and My blood is truly drink." And as a man is conjoined to the Lord by Divine good and truth, therefore it is further said, "He that eateth My flesh and drinketh My blood shall have eternal life, and he abideth in Me and I in him." The Lord spoke in this way, namely, saying His "flesh" and His "blood," and not His Divine good and His Divine truth, in order that the sense of the letter of the Word might be made up of such things as correspond to things spiritual, in which the angels are; thus and in no other way could there be, by means of the Word, a conjunction of the men of the church with the angels (see The Doctrine of the New Jerusalem 252, 258-262; and Heaven and Hell 303-310).

(References: John 6:50-58)


[6] Since "blood" signifies the Divine truth proceeding from the Lord, and conjunction with the Lord is effected by man's reception of it, therefore blood is called "the blood of the covenant," for "covenant" signifies conjunction. Blood is called "the blood of the covenant" by the Lord when He instituted the Holy Supper, for He said:

Drink of it, all of you; for this is My blood of the new covenant [or testament] (Matthew 26:27, 28; Mark 14:24; Luke 22:20).

It is also called "the blood of the covenant" in Moses, where is the following:

Moses came from Mount Sinai, and told the people all the words of Jehovah, and all the judgments. And Moses wrote all the words of Jehovah, and rose up early in the morning, and built an altar under the mount. And he sent young men of the sons of Israel, and they offered up burnt-offerings, and sacrificed bullocks as peace-offerings unto Jehovah. And Moses took half of the blood and put it in basins; and half of the blood he sprinkled on the altar. And he took the book of the covenant, and read in the ears of the people; and they said, All that Jehovah hath spoken will we do and hear. And he took the blood and sprinkled it on the people, and said, Behold the blood of the covenant that Jehovah hath concluded with you upon all these words. And they saw the God of Israel, and under His feet as it were a work of sapphire stone, and as the substance of the heavens for purity (Exodus 24:3-11).

That "blood" here signifies Divine truth proceeding from the Lord and received by man, and conjunction therefrom, is evident, for half of it was sprinkled on the altar and half on the people; for the "altar" signified all worship that is from the good of love, and the "people" those who offer worship and receive the good of love by means of truths; for all reception of Divine good is effected by truths made truths of life, and consequent conjunction is by means of the good in such truths. That there is conjunction by means of the good in such truths, that is, by means of truths made truths of life, and that "blood" was a representative thereof, is very clear from the words there, for this was done when Moses descended from Mount Sinai, from which the law was promulgated, and also the statutes and judgments that were to be observed; and it is said that "Moses wrote all these words of Jehovah, and read them in the ears of the people," who said, "All that Jehovah hath spoken will we do and hear," which words they said twice (see verses 3 and 7).

(References: Exodus 24:2-3, 24:3, 24:3-8, 24:3-10, Exodus 24:7, 24:10; Matthew 26:27-28)


[7] Words or truths become truths of life by doing; and as Moses wrote these words, he called them, "The Book of the Covenant," which signifies that there is conjunction by means of them. The law promulgated by Jehovah from Mount Sinai, and the statutes and judgments that were also commanded at that time, signified all Divine truth, or the Divine truth in its whole complex. This is why they are called "the Book of the Covenant," and why the ark in which was that book is called "The Ark of the Covenant," "covenant" signifying conjunction. Because Divine truth, by which there is conjunction, proceeds from the Lord, the Lord appeared to the people "under the feet as it were a work of sapphire stone;" that He so appeared "under the feet" signifying that Divine truth is such in ultimates. Divine truth in ultimates is Divine truth in the sense of the letter of the Word; "work of sapphire stone" signifies the translucence of this sense from Divine truth in the internal or spiritual sense; "the God of Israel" is the Lord. (That "sapphire stone" signifies translucence from internal truths, see Arcana Coelestia 9407; and that "the God of Israel" is the Lord in respect to the Divine Human, see above, n. 328.) From this it is now clear that a "covenant" or conjunction is effected by means of Divine truth, and that the blood sprinkled on the altar and half of it on the people was a representative of it, since "blood" signifies Divine truth proceeding from the Lord and received by man, as was said above.

(That "covenant" signifies conjunction, see Arcana Coelestia 665, 666, 1023, 1038, 1864, 1996, 2003, 2021, 6804, 8767, 8778, 9396, 10632.

That the law in a strict sense means the ten commandments of the Decalogue, and in a broad sense, the whole Word, thus all Divine truth, n. 2606, 3382, 6752, 7463, 9417.

That from this "Mount Sinai" signifies heaven where the Lord is, from whom is Divine truth, or from whom is the law, both in the strict and the broad sense, n. 8399, 8753, 8793, 8805, 9420; and that the altar was the principal representative of the Lord, and of the worship from the good of love, n. 921, 2777, 2811, 4489, 4541, 8935, 8940, 9388-9389, 9714, 9963-9964, 10123, 10151, 10242, 10245, 10642.)

(References: Arcana Coelestia 665-666; The Apocalypse Explained 328)


[8] Since "blood" signifies Divine truth proceeding from the Lord and received by man, from which is conjunction, therefore all things that were representative of things Divine proceeding from the Lord which are called celestial and spiritual were inaugurated by oil and by blood, and were then called holy. They were inaugurated by oil and blood that they might be representative, because "oil" signified the Divine good of the Divine love, and "blood" the Divine truth proceeding therefrom, for truth proceeds from good. That inaugurations and sanctifications were made by means of oil will be seen in what follows, where they are treated of in their paragraph. Here let some things in which blood was used be mentioned, as:

When Aaron and his sons were to be sanctified, blood was sprinkled upon the horns of the altar, and round about the altar, and upon Aaron and his sons, and upon their garments (Exodus 29:12, 16, 20-21; Leviticus 8:24).

Blood was sprinkled seven times before the veil that was over the ark, and upon the horns of the altar of incense (Leviticus 4:6-7, 17-18).

Before Aaron entered within the veil to the mercy-seat, he should sacrifice and burn incense, and should sprinkle the blood with the finger seven times upon the mercy-seat eastward (Leviticus 21:12-15).

The blood of the burnt-offering and of the sacrifice should be sprinkled upon the altar, around the altar, and at the base of the altar (Leviticus 1:5, 1:11, 15; 3:2, 8, 13; 4:25, 30, 34; 5:9; 8:15, 24; 17:6; Numbers 18:17; Deuteronomy 12:27).

The blood should be sprinkled upon the horns of the altar and thus expiation should be made for the altar (Exodus 30:10; Leviticus 16:18-19).

Blood from the burnt-offerings and sacrifices was sprinkled and poured out upon the altar, around the altar, or at its base, because the altar with the burnt-offerings and sacrifices upon it represented and thence signified all worship from the good of love and the truths therefrom; and as truths proceed from good, therefore the blood was sprinkled on and poured out around the altar, for "around" signifies proceeding.

(References: Exodus 29:21; Leviticus 16:12-15)


[9] (But these things can be better seen from what has been shown respecting burnt offerings and sacrifices in the Arcana Coelestia, as follows: "burnt-offerings" and "sacrifices" signified all things of worship from the good of love, and the truths therefrom, n. 923, 6905, 8680, 8936, 10042. Therefore burnt-offerings and sacrifices were called bread, n. 2165, because "bread" signifies everything that nourishes the spiritual life, n. 2165, 3478, 4976, 5147, 5915, 6118, 8410, 8418, 9323, 10686. Burnt-offerings and sacrifices signified celestial Divine and spiritual Divine things, which are the internals of the church, from which are all things of worship, n. 2180, 2805, 2807, 2830, 3519; with a difference according to the differences of worship, n. 2805, 6905, 8936. Therefore there were many kinds of burnt-offerings and sacrifices, and in them various processes and consisting also of various animals, n. 2830, 9391, 9990. The various things they specially signified can be known from the particulars of the procedure unfolded by the internal sense, n. Arcana Coelestia 10042. The rituals and procedures of the sacrifices contain arcana of heaven, n. Arcana Coelestia 10057. In general they contain the arcana of the glorification of the Lord's Human, and in a relative sense, the arcana of man's regeneration and his purification from evils and falsities, n. 9990, 10022, 10042, 10053, 10057. What was signified by the "meal-offerings," which were bread and cakes, which were also sacrificed, n. Arcana Coelestia 10079; what by the "drink-offering," which was wine, n. 4581, 10137)

[10] When these things are understood it can be known that "the blood of the sacrifice" in other places also in the Word signifies Divine truth, as in Ezekiel:

Say to the bird of every wing and to the beast of the field, Come together and come; gather yourselves from round about to My sacrifice that I do sacrifice for you, a great sacrifice upon the mountains of Israel; that ye may eat flesh and drink blood. Ye shall eat the flesh of the mighty and drink the blood of the princes of the earth. And ye shall eat fat to satiety, and drink blood to drunkenness, of My sacrifice which I sacrifice for you. And ye shall be satiated at My table with horse, with chariot, with every man of war. So will I give My glory among the nations (Ezekiel 39:17-21).

This treats of the restoration of the church; and "Israel" and "Jacob" mean all who are of the church, respecting whom these things therefore are said; "a great sacrifice upon the mountains of Israel" signifies all things of their worship; "flesh" and "fat" signify the good of love, and "blood" the truth from that good; worship is from these; an abundance of both is described by their "eating flesh and fat to satiety," and "drinking blood to drunkenness," and this "of the sacrifice;" it is therefore further said, "Ye shall be satiated at My table with horse, chariot, and every man of war," for "horse" signifies the understanding of truth, "chariot" doctrine, and the "man of war" truth fighting against falsity and destroying it. Who cannot see that "blood" here does not mean blood, as that they "should drink the blood of the princes of the earth," and "drink blood even to drunkenness, of the sacrifice?" "The princes of the earth" signify the principal truths of the church; therefore their "blood" signifies spiritual nourishment from those truths. Because such things are signified, therefore it is also said, at the end of this chapter, respecting Israel, by whom the church is signified:

Then will I not hide My faces any more from them; for I will pour out My spirit upon Israel (Ezekiel 39:29).

It is said, "Say to the bird of every wing and to the beast of the field," because "bird of every wing" signifies spiritual truth in the whole complex, and "beast of the field" the affection of good. (That "birds" in the Word signify things spiritual, n. 745, 776, 866, 988, 991, 3219, 5149, 7441; likewise "wings," n. 8764, 9514; that "beasts" signify affections, and "beasts of the field" the affections of good, n. 2180, 3218, 3519, 5198, 9090, 9280, 10609; and that both birds and beasts were for this reason used in sacrifices, n. 1823, 3519, 7523, 9280)

(References: Ezekiel 39:17-22)


[11] In confirmation that the "beast of the field" and "bird" signify such things, I will quote here one passage only from the Word:

In that day I will make a covenant for them with the beast of the field, and with the bird of the heavens, and with the creeping thing of the earth; and I will break the bow and the sword and war from the earth. And I will betroth thee unto Me for ever; and I will betroth thee unto Me in justice and in judgment, and in mercy and in compassions, and I will betroth thee unto Me in truth (Hosea 2:18-20).

"To make a covenant with the beast of the field and with the bird of the heavens" signifies with the affections of good and with spiritual truths, for with these the Lord is conjoined to man, since the Lord is in these with man; therefore it is called "a covenant" with them, "covenant" meaning conjunction. That "beasts" signify the affections of good, and "birds" things spiritual, will be fully shown in their paragraphs in what follows.

[12] Because "fat" in sacrifices signified Divine good, and "blood" Divine truth, both from the Lord, and because by both when received by man conjunction was effected, therefore the posterity of Jacob, that is, the Jews and Israelites, were forbidden to eat any fat or any blood (see Leviticus 3:17; 7:23-27; 17:11-14; Deut. 12:17, 12:23-25; 15:23). This was because that nation was not in any good of love, nor in any truth of good, but in the falsities of evil; and "to eat fat and blood" signified with them the mingling of truth from good with the falsity from evil, which is profanation; from which also it can be seen that "blood" signifies Divine truth. (That "fat" or "fatness" in the Word signifies the good of love, see Arcana Coelestia 353, 5943, 6409, 10033; and that the Jews and Israelites were solely in things external and not in things internal, and consequently not in spiritual truths and good, but in the falsities of evil; and that all things of their worship were external separated from what is internal, and that still by things external they could represent the internal things of worship, see in The Doctrine of the New Jerusalem 248 .)

(References: Deuteronomy 12:16)


[13] Because "blood" in the sacrifices signified Divine truth, therefore also:

They were forbidden to sacrifice the blood of the sacrifice upon what was leavened (Exodus 23:18; 34:25);

for "leaven" signifies falsity, and "what was leavened" truth falsified (see Arcana Coelestia 2342, 7906, 8051, 9992).

[14] The Lord's "flesh" signifies the Divine good of the Divine love, and His "blood" signifies the Divine truth proceeding from that good, because there are two things that proceed from the Lord's Divine Human, namely, Divine good and Divine truth, the latter is His blood, and the former His flesh. That which proceeds is the celestial Divine and the spiritual Divine; and these constitute the heavens in general and in particular. (But this can be seen better from what has been shown in the work on Heaven and Hell, under the following heads. The Divine of the Lord makes Heaven, n. 7-12; the Divine of the Lord in Heaven is Love to Him and Charity towards the Neighbor, n. 13-19; The Whole Heaven, therefore, as a Whole and in Its Parts, answers to One Man, n 59-77; This is from the Lord's Divine Human, n 78-87 and further from what is said of The Sun in Heaven, and Light and Heat therefrom, and that Heat is the Divine Good, and Light Divine Truth, both proceeding from the Lord, n 116-140) From this it can in some measure be comprehended why the Divine proceeding is meant by the "flesh and blood," that is, the Divine good by "flesh," and the Divine truth by "blood."

[15] With man also there are two things that constitute his spiritual life, namely the good of love and the truth of faith. With him the will is the receptacle of the good of love, and the understanding is the receptacle of the truth of faith. All things belonging to the mind, that is, belonging to the will and understanding, have a correspondence with all things belonging to the body, consequently the latter are moved at the nod of the former. In general, the correspondence of the will is with the flesh, and the correspondence of the understanding with the blood; consequently the voluntary that is man's own [proprium voluntarium] is meant in the Word by "flesh," and the intellectual that is his own [proprium intellectuale] by "blood," as in Matthew:

Jesus said to Simon, blessed art thou, for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee (Matthew 16:17).

These things are mentioned that it may be known that in the Word things voluntary and intellectual, that is, spiritual things, are meant by "flesh and blood" when man is referred to, and things Divine when the Lord is referred to. But these things are for those whose minds can be elevated above natural ideas and can see causes.

[16] This also is what is signified by the "blood and water" that issued out of the Lord's breast; which is described as follows in John:

One of the soldiers pierced His side, and straightway there came out blood and water. And he that saw beareth witness, and his witness is true; he knoweth that he saith true things, that ye also may believe (John 19:34-35).

These things were done to signify the Lord's conjunction with the human race through Divine truth proceeding from the Divine good of His love; "breast" signifies Divine love; "blood and water" signify Divine truth proceeding, "blood" the Divine truth that is for the spiritual man, and "water" the Divine truth that is for the natural man; for all things that are related in the Word respecting the Lord's passion are also significative (see above, n. 83, 195). And because these things signify His love, and man's salvation by means of Divine truth proceeding from Him, therefore the evangelist adds, "He that saw beareth witness, and his witness is true; he knoweth that he saith true things, that ye also may believe."

(References: The Apocalypse Explained 83, 195)


[17] To what has already been mentioned I will add the following from the Word. In Zechariah:

Exult exceedingly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem; behold, thy King cometh. And He shall speak peace unto the Gentiles; and His dominion shall be from sea even to sea, and from the river even to the uttermost parts of the earth. As for thee also, by the blood of thy covenant I will send forth thy bound ones out of the pit wherein is no water (Zechariah 9:9-11).

This is said of the Lord, and of the establishment of the church by Him among the nations; "the blood of the covenant" here meaning Divine truth, by means of which there is conjunction of the Lord with those who are to be of His church (as above); it is therefore further said, "I will send forth thy bound ones out of the pit wherein is no water," for by these the nations that are in falsities from ignorance are signified; "the pit wherein is no water" signifying where there is no truth, and "sending them forth" signifying to free them from falsities. That "water" signifies the truth of the church, see above (n. 71); and that "the bound in the pit" signifies those who are in falsities from ignorance, and yet in a desire to know truths, see Arcana Coelestia 4728, 4744, 5038, 6854, 7950).

(References: The Apocalypse Explained 71)


[18] In David:

God shall save the souls of the needy; He shall redeem their soul from fraud and violence; and precious shall their blood be in His eyes. And he shall live, and to him shall He give of the gold of Sheba, and shall pray for him continually; all the day shall He bless him. Upon the top of the mountains his fruit shall be shaken (Psalms 72:13-16);

this treats of the "needy," by whom those who desire truths from spiritual affection are signified; of these it is said, that "He shall redeem their soul from fraud and violence," which signifies their liberation from evils and falsities, which destroy the goods of love and the truths of faith. The reception of Divine truth by them as being acceptable and grateful, is signified by "precious shall their blood be in His eyes," "blood" here meaning Divine truth received. Their reformation is described by "he shall live, and to him shall He give of the gold of Sheba, and shall pray for him continually; all the day shall He bless him;" the "gold of Sheba" meaning the good of charity; "to pray for him continually" signifying that they shall be continually withheld from falsities and kept in truths, and "He shall bless him" signifying that they shall be continually in the good of charity and faith; it is therefore said further, "upon the top of the mountains his fruit shall be shaken;" the "top of the mountains" signifying heaven, from which they have the good of love from the Lord, which is "fruit."

[19] In Moses:

The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; who shall bind to the vine his ass's foal, and to the noble vine the son of his she-ass, whilst he shall wash his vesture in wine, and his covering in the blood of grapes (Genesis 49:10-11).

This prophecy treats of the Lord, of whom it is said, "he shall bind to the vine his ass's foal, and to the noble vine the son of his she-ass," and "he shall wash his vesture in wine, and his covering in the blood of grapes;" "vine" signifying the church, and "wine" and the "blood of grapes" Divine truth. (For what the other things signify, see the explanation of these words in Arcana Coelestia 6371-6377.) The like is meant by the "blood of grapes" in Deuteronomy (Deuteronomy 32:14); where the ancient church reformed by Divine truth is treated of.

[20] From what has been shown in this and the preceding article it can be seen by those who acknowledge the spiritual sense of the Word that "Thou didst redeem us to God in Thy blood" means conjunction with the Divine by the acknowledgment of the Lord, and by the reception of Divine truth from Him; also that the like is meant by "blood" in the twelfth chapter of this prophetic book, where it is said:

That Michael and his angels overcame the dragon by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their 3 testimony (Revelation 12:11).

It is said, "the blood of the Lamb" and "the word of testimony," because "the blood of the Lamb" signifies the reception of Divine truth from the Lord, and "the word of testimony" the acknowledgment of His Divine Human.

[21] That "blood" signifies Divine truth is still further evident from its contrary sense, in which "blood" signifies violence offered to Divine truth by the falsities of evil, and its destruction by these; and as what is signified in the genuine sense is also manifested by these contrary meanings, I will cite some passages in which "blood" and "bloods" have that significance. It is to be known that most things in the Word have also a contrary sense, and that from that sense it can be known what is signified in the genuine sense. The following will serve for illustration. In Revelation:

The second angel poured out his bowl into the sea, and it became as the blood of one dead, and every living animal in the sea died. And the third angel poured out his bowl into the rivers and into the fountains of the waters, and they became blood (Revelation 16:3-4).

And elsewhere:

The two witnesses have power over the waters to turn them into blood (Revelation 11:6).

In Isaiah:

The waters of Nimrim shall be desolations; and the waters of Dimon are full of blood (Isaiah 15:6, 9).

In David:

He sent darkness and made it dark. He turned their waters into blood, and made their fish to die (Psalms 105:28-29).

It is clear from these passages what "blood" signifies in the contrary sense; for blood in the genuine sense signifies Divine truth, and with those who receive it truth from good; so in the contrary sense it signifies violence offered to Divine truth, and with those who do that, it signifies falsity from evil. This contrary meaning is clear from its being said that the "waters" of "the sea," of "rivers," and of "fountains," "were turned into blood;" for "waters" signify truths, therefore "blood" here signifies falsities that destroy truths. The "living animal in the sea," and the "fish," signify truths known [vera scientifica]; so their "dying" and "being slain" by blood signify such truths also destroyed. (That "waters" signify truths, see above, n. 71; and that "fish" signify truths known [vera scientifica] of the natural man, see Arcana Coelestia 40, 991)

(References: The Apocalypse Explained 40, The Apocalypse Explained 71, The Apocalypse Explained 991)


[22] Again in Revelation:

I saw when He had opened the sixth seal, and behold there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth, and the whole moon became blood (Revelation 6:12).

In Joel:

I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth; blood, and fire, and columns of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great day of Jehovah come (Joel 2:30-31).

Here also it is known from the contrary meaning that "blood" signifies violence offered to the Divine truth; for "sun" in the Word signifies the celestial Divine, which is the Divine good, and "moon" signifies the spiritual Divine, which is the Divine truth; it is therefore said that "the moon shall be turned into blood." (That this is the signification of "moon" see in the work on Heaven and Hell 118, 119.)

(References: Heaven and Hell 118-119)


[23] In Isaiah:

He that walketh in righteousness, and speaketh uprightness, that stoppeth his ear lest he hear bloods, and shutteth his eyes lest he see evil (Isaiah 33:15);

"to stop the ear lest he hear bloods" meaning evidently not to hear falsities from evil. In David:

Thou wilt destroy those that speak falsehood; the man of blood and deceit Jehovah abhorreth (Psalms 5:6);

"the man of blood and deceit" meaning those who are in falsities from evil; it is therefore said, "Thou wilt destroy those that speak falsehood," "falsehood" in the Word signifying falsities. In Isaiah:

And it shall come to pass, that he that is left in Zion and he that remaineth in Jerusalem shall be called holy to Him, everyone that is written unto life in Jerusalem. When the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have washed away the bloods of Jerusalem out of the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment and by the spirit of cleansing [burning] (Isaiah 4:3-4).

Because "Jerusalem" signifies the church in respect to doctrine, therefore it is said, "When He shall have washed away its blood out of the midst thereof," "bloods" signifying the falsities of evil. The "spirit of judgment" signifies Divine truth, and because this purifies it is said, "by the spirit of cleansing" [burning].

(References: Isaiah 3:3-4)


[24] In Ezekiel:

In the day wherein thou wast born I passed by beside thee, and I saw thee trodden down in thy bloods, and I said unto thee, In thy bloods, live; yea, I said unto thee, In thy bloods live. I washed thee, and I washed away thy bloods from upon thee, and I anointed thee with oil (Ezekiel 16:5-6, 9, (Ezekiel 16:9)22, 36, 38).

This also treats of Jerusalem, which signifies the church in respect to the doctrine of truth, here first of the falsities of evil in which it was before it was reformed, and afterwards of its reformation; the falsities of evil are signified by its being seen "trodden down in bloods;" and its reformation by "he washed, and washed away the bloods, and anointed with oil;" "to wash" signifying to purify by truths; "to wash away bloods" signifying to remove the falsities of evil; and "to anoint with oil" signifying to endow with the good of love.

(References: Ezekiel 16:22, 16:36, 16:38)


[25] In Lamentations:

For the sins of the prophets of Jerusalem, and the iniquities of her priests, that have shed the blood of the just in the midst of her. They have wandered blind in the streets, they have been polluted with blood, what they cannot pollute they touch with their garments (Lamentations 4:13-14).

"Prophets of Jerusalem" signify those who are to teach the truths of doctrine, and "priests" those who are to lead by truths to good; here mentioned in a contrary sense, since it is said, "for their sins;" "to shed the blood of the just" signifies to falsify truths and adulterate goods; it is therefore said, "they have wandered blind in the streets, they have been polluted with blood, what they cannot pollute they touch with their garments;" "to wander blind in the streets" signifies not to see truths at all, "streets" meaning truths; "polluted with bloods" signifies to be wholly in falsities; "what they cannot pollute they touch with their garments" signifies that what they cannot pervert they nevertheless falsify, "garments" meaning the truths that invest interior things, which truths are the truths of the sense of the letter of the Word. In Isaiah:

All uproar shall be whirled about by the earthquake, and the garment is polluted with bloods (Isaiah 9:5);

"earthquake" signifying the perversion of the church by the falsification of truth, and the "garment polluted with bloods" the falsification of the sense of the letter of the Word.

[26] In Jeremiah:

Thou hast taught evils thy ways; also in thy skirts is found the blood of the souls of the innocents; I found them not in digging through, but upon all these (Jeremiah 2:33-34).

Here "blood found in the skirts" signifies the like as above by "what they cannot pollute they touch with their garments," "skirts" are the "garments." "I found them not in digging through, but upon all these" signifies that they dared not destroy the truths themselves, but that they falsified the truths of the sense of the letter, "skirts" signifying those truths.

[27] In Isaiah:

Your hands are full of bloods (Isaiah 1:15).

Your hands are polluted with blood, and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies, and your tongue hath meditated perverseness. Their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed innocent blood; their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity (Isaiah 59:3, 7).

"Hands polluted with blood, and fingers with iniquity" signifies that in all things belonging to them there is falsity and the evil of falsity; "hands" and "fingers" signify power, thus all things with them that have power. Because this is the meaning it is also said, "your lips have spoken lies, and your tongue hath meditated perverseness," "lies" meaning falsities, and "perverseness" the evil of falsity; "their feet make haste to shed innocent blood" signifies their hastening to destroy the good of love and charity; this is signified by "shedding innocent blood." The good of innocence is that from which is every good and truth of heaven and the church (see Heaven and Hell 276-283). From this it can be seen what is signified in a general sense by "bloods," in the plural, namely, violence offered both to the truths and the goods of the Word and of the church.

As "shedding innocent blood" signifies to destroy the good of love and of charity, every kind of precaution was taken that innocent blood should not be shed; and if it were shed:

That expiation shall be made for the land (Deuteronomy 19:10, 13; 21:1-9);

for the "land" signifies the church.

[28] In Isaiah:

Jehovah goeth forth from His place to visit the iniquity of the earth; then shall the earth reveal her bloods, and shall no more cover her slain (Isaiah 26:21).

The "bloods" that the earth shall reveal signify all the falsities and evils that have destroyed the truths and goods of the church, the "earth" being the church where these are; the "slain" signify those that have perished by falsities and evils. (That the "slain" signify those that have perished by falsities and evils, see above, n. 315.) In Revelation:

In Babylon was found the blood of prophets and of saints, and of all that have been slain upon the earth (Revelation 18:24);

"the blood of prophets and of saints" meaning truths and goods extinguished; and the "slain" those who have perished by falsities and evils (as just above).

(References: The Apocalypse Explained 315)


[29] The like is meant by:

The blood of the prophets which was shed upon the earth, from the blood of Abel the just even to the blood of Zachariah, the son of Barachiah, whom they slew between the temple and the altar (Matthew 23:30, 34-35; Luke 11:50-51).

In the spiritual sense, by "Abel" those who are in the good of charity are meant, and, abstractly from person, that good itself; and by "Cain" those who make faith alone the sole means of salvation, and the good of charity of no account, thus rejecting and slaying it; and by "Zachariah" those who are in the truths of doctrine are meant, and abstractly from person the truth itself of doctrine; therefore the "blood" of these two signifies the extinction of all good and truth; "whom they slew between the temple and the altar" signifies in the spiritual sense every kind of rejection of the Lord; for "temple" signifies the Lord in respect to Divine truth, and "altar" the Lord in respect to Divine good, and "between them" signifies both together.

(That "Abel" in a representative sense is the good of charity, see Arcana Coelestia 342, 354, 1179, 3325; and that "Cain" is faith alone, separated from charity, n. 340, 347, 1179[1], 3325. That "prophet" signifies the doctrine of truth, n. 2534, 7269. That "temple" signifies the Lord in respect to Divine truth, and "altar" the Lord in respect to Divine good, and in a relative sense the Lord's kingdom and church in respect to truth and good, n. 2777, 3720, 9714, 10642. That "between" the two signifies where there is a marriage of Divine truth and Divine good, n. 10001, 10025.)

[30] In the Word it is often said of those condemned to death, that "their bloods should be upon them," which means, in the spiritual sense, that damnation should be upon them because of the falsities and evils by which they had destroyed the truths and goods of the church; for in general "bloods" signify all the falsities of doctrine, of life, and of worship, by means of which come the evils that destroy the church. These evils are in part enumerated in Ezekiel (Ezekiel 18:10-13); these are also signified by "bloods" in John:

As many as received Him, to them gave He power to become sons of God, to them that believe on His name; who were born, not of bloods nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God (John 1:12, 13).

"The Lord's name" means all truths and goods by which He is to be worshiped; "bloods" mean all the falsities and evils that destroy; "the will of the flesh" and "the will of man" signify all the evils of love and the falsities of faith, for "flesh" signifies the voluntary that is man's own [proprium volutarium] from which is every evil, and "man" [vir] signifies the intellectual that is man's own [proprium intellectuale], from which is every falsity, "will" meaning where these things are; "to be born of God" is to be regenerated by means of the truths of faith, and by means of a life according to them.

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Footnotes:

1.  The photolithograph has "our;" see n. 411.

AR 21.

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(References: Exodus 24:3-10, Exodus 29:21; Ezekiel 39:17-22; Isaiah 3:3-4; John 1:12-13, 6:50-58; Leviticus 16:12-15; Revelation 5:9)

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From Swedenborg's Works

References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 320, 355, 376, 388, 394, 401, 476, 503, 645, 701, 730, 748, 750, 860, 923, 960, 966, 975, 1049, 1082, 1193


Thanks to the Swedenborg Foundation for their permission to use this translation.


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