(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 3868

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3868. And she conceived again, and bare a son. That this signifies spiritual conception and birth from what is external toward things more interior, is evident from what was said above (n. 3860), where the same words occur. Advancement is said to be made from what is external toward things more interior, when it is made from the memory-knowledge which is of the understanding, to the will; or, speaking spiritually, when it is made from the truth which is of faith, to charity. For the understanding is that which proceeds from the will, and which manifests the will in a certain visible form; in like manner, faith proceeds from charity, and manifests charity in a certain form. From this it is evident that the understanding is the external of the will; and that faith is the external of charity; or what is the same, that the will is the internal of the understanding, and charity the internal of faith. Thus to advance from what is external to things more interior, is to advance from faith in the understanding to faith in the will, consequently from faith to charity, which is represented by Levi (concerning whom in what presently follows). Be it known that by faith, when distinguished from charity, is meant truth, such as the truth of doctrine, or such as there is in the confession called the Apostles' Creed; and this is according to the general sense in the church; for to have faith in truths is believed to be the faith by which is salvation. Few know that faith is trust and confidence, and among these few, still fewer know that trust or confidence is from charity, and is not possible with anyone who has not lived the life of charity.


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