Das Obras de Swedenborg

 

True Christian Religion # 392

Estudar Esta Passagem

  
/ 853  
  

392.. CHAPTER SEVEN

CHARITY, OR LOVE TOWARDS THE NEIGHBOUR, AND GOOD DEEDS

After the chapter on faith, there follows one on charity, because faith and charity are linked like truth and good; and these two are linked like light and heat in springtime. This expression is used because spiritual light, the light radiated by the sun of the spiritual world, is in essence truth. Therefore, wherever truth is to be seen in that world, it shines with a radiance in proportion to its purity. Spiritual heat, which is also radiated by that sun, is in essence good. These statements have been made because charity and faith stand in the same relationship to each other as good and truth; and charity is all the good taken together a person does to his neighbour, and faith is all the truth taken together a person thinks about God and the things that are His.

[2] Since then the truth of faith is spiritual light, and the good of charity is spiritual heat, it follows that these two stand in the same relationship as the two things in the natural world which share these names. That is to say, when they are combined everything on earth flourishes, and in the same way when charity and faith are combined everything in the human mind flourishes, the only difference being that on earth the flowering is the result of natural heat and light, while in the human mind it is the result of spiritual heat and light. This flowering, being spiritual, is wisdom and intelligence. There is too a correspondence between the two, and for this reason the human mind, in which charity is linked with faith and faith with charity, is likened in the Word to a garden; and this is the meaning of the Garden of Eden, as was fully shown in ARCANA CAELESTIA (published in London).

[3] Furthermore it should be known that unless a discussion of charity follows that of faith, it is impossible to grasp what faith is, since, as the preceding chapter stated and showed, faith without charity is no faith, and charity without faith is no charity, and it is only the Lord who gives life to them both (355-361). It was also shown that the Lord, charity and faith make one, just as do life, the will and the understanding; and if they are separated, each of them is destroyed like a pearl collapsing into dust (362-367). Moreover charity and faith are together present in good deeds (373ff).

  
/ 853  
  

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

Das Obras de Swedenborg

 

True Christian Religion # 355

Estudar Esta Passagem

  
/ 853  
  

355. V. Faith without charity is no faith, and charity without faith is no charity, and both are lifeless unless the Lord gives them life.

It is perfectly plain from the Epistles written by the Apostles that it never so much as entered the mind of any of them, that the present-day church would have separated faith from charity, alleging that faith alone without the deeds prescribed by the law justifies a person and saves him; and that as a result charity cannot be linked with faith, since faith comes from God, and charity, in so far as it is realised in deeds, comes from man. But this separation and division was introduced into the Christian church at the time when they split the one God into three persons, attributing to each equal divinity. It will be explained in the next section that there is no faith without charity, nor any charity without faith, and both are lifeless unless the Lord gives them life, Here to smooth the path I shall prove that:

(i) A person can acquire faith for himself;

(ii) also charity;

(iii) and a life of faith and charity.

(iv) But still faith, charity or life in either of them is not in the least created by man, but only by the Lord.

  
/ 853  
  

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