(AC) - A Disclosure of the Hidden Treasures of Heaven Contained in the Holy Scripture or Word of the Lord, Together with Amazing Things Seen in the World of Spirits and in the Heaven of Angels

AC 2220

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2220. That "Sodom" is all evil from the love of self, is evident from the signification of "Sodom" in the Word. Although in the following chapter it appears as if the evil of the worst adultery was signified by "Sodom," nevertheless in the internal sense nothing else than evil from the love of self is signified by it. In the Word also the abominations that well forth from the love of self are represented by adulteries of various kinds. That "Sodom" signifies in general all evil from the love of self, and "Gomorrah" all falsity therefrom, has been shown in volume 1 (n. 1212, 1663, 1682, 1689), and is further evident from the following passages in the Word. In Jeremiah:
A sword upon the Chaldeans, and upon the inhabitants of Babel, as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah, and the neighbor cities thereof, saith Jehovah, there shall not a man dwell there, and there shall not a son of man sojourn therein (Jer. 50:35, 40).
This passage treats of those signified by the Chaldeans, who are such as have profane falsity in their worship (see n. 1368); and of those signified by Babel, who are such as have profane evil in their worship (see n. 1182, 1326). Their condemnation is described by the "overthrow of Sodom," that is, of evil in general, and by the "overthrow of Gomorrah," that is, of falsity in general; because they also have in their worship the evil of the love of self, and the derivative falsity.
[2] In Amos:
I have overthrown you as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah; and ye became as a brand plucked out of the burning (Amos 4:11),
where Samaria is treated of, by which is signified the perverted spiritual church, and which in respect to evils in general contrary to the goods of charity is called "Sodom," and in respect to falsities in general contrary to the truths of faith is called "Gomorrah;" and in respect to both (here as previously) is called the "overthrowing of God." In Zephaniah:
Moab shall be as Sodom, and the sons of Ammon as Gomorrah, a forsaken place of the nettle, and a pit of salt, and a desolation even to eternity; this shall they have for their pride, because they have reproached and have enlarged upon the people of Jehovah Zebaoth (Zeph. 2:9-10),
where "Sodom" denotes evil from the love of self, and "Gomorrah" the derivative falsity, of both of which "desolation" is here predicated, as previously was "overthrow." "Pride" is the love of self; to "reproach the people of Jehovah Zebaoth," is to bring evil upon truths; and to "enlarge upon the people," is to bring falsity upon them.
[3] In Ezekiel:
Thine elder sister is Samaria, that dwelleth at thy left hand, she and her daughters; and thy younger sister, that dwelleth at thy right hand, is Sodom and her daughters. Thy sister Sodom hath not done, she and her daughters, as thou hast done, thou and thy daughters. Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom; pride, satiety of bread, and security of ease, were in her and her daughters, and she did not strengthen the hand of the wretched and needy; and they became haughty, and committed abomination before Me (Ezek. 16:46-50),
where the abominations of Jerusalem are treated of, and are described by "Samaria" and "Sodom"; by "Samaria," instead of Gomorrah, as to falsities, and by "Sodom" as to evils; and it is stated what is specifically signified by "Sodom," for it is said, "this was the iniquity of Sodom," to wit that it was the love of self, which is there signified by "pride." That they turned away from the goods of charity, is signified by the "satiety of bread;" that they had acquiesced in these things, is signified by the "security of ease;" that they had no mercy, is described by their "not having strengthened the hand of the poor and needy;" and that all the cupidities thence derived are imbued with the love of self, is signified by their "daughters having become haughty;" the "daughters" are cupidities.
[4] Hence it is manifestly evident what "Sodom" is, thus that it is not according to the historic sense in the following chapter, but that such things are there signified in the internal sense as are described here by the prophet, namely, those which are of the love of self. But Sodom is here described more mildly because the abominations of Jerusalem are treated of as having been greater than those of Sodom, as is also evident from the Lord's words in Matthew:
Verily I say unto you, it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment, than for that city (Matt. 10:15; Mark 6:11; Luke 10:12).
In John:
Their bodies shall lie upon the street of the great city which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt (Rev. 11:8),
where it is evident that by "Sodom" is not meant Sodom, nor Egypt by "Egypt," for it is said that it is "spiritually called Sodom and Egypt;" "Sodom" denotes all evil from the love of self, and "Egypt" (instead of Gomorrah) all derivative falsity.


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