(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 3956

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3956. And Leah said, God hath given me my reward, because I gave my handmaid to my man. That this signifies in the supreme sense the Divine good of truth and truth of good; in the internal sense, celestial conjugial love; and in the external sense, mutual love, may be seen from the signification of "reward." "Reward" is frequently mentioned in the Word, but few know what it there signifies. It is known in the churches that by the goods which man does he can merit nothing, for they are not his, but the Lord's; and that meriting or merit looks to man, and thus conjoins itself with the love of self, and with the thought of pre-eminence over others, and consequently with contempt for others. For this reason works done for the sake of reward are not good in themselves, because they do not spring from the genuine fountain; that is, from charity toward the neighbor. Charity toward the neighbor has within it the desire that it should be as well with him as with ourselves; and with the angels, that it should be better with him than with themselves. Such also is the affection of charity; and therefore it is averse to all self-merit, and consequently to all the doing of good that looks to reward. To those who are in charity, the reward consists in being able to show kindness, and in being allowed to do so, and in the kindness being accepted. This is the delight, nay, bliss itself that is enjoyed by those who are in the affection of charity. From this it is evident what that "reward" is that is mentioned in the Word, namely, the delight and bliss of the affection of charity; or what is the same, the delight and bliss of mutual love (n. 3816); for the affection of charity, and mutual love, are the same thing. (See n. 1110, 1111, 1774, 1835, 1877, 2027, 2273, 2340, 2373, 2400.) From all this it is evident that by "reward" in the external sense is here signified mutual love.
[2] That in a sense still higher, or in the internal sense, by "reward" is signified celestial conjugial love, may be seen from the things that have been said above concerning the heavenly marriage (n. 2618, 2739, 2741, 2803, 3024, 3132, 3952), namely, that it is the conjunction of good and truth; and that mutual love is from this conjunction, or from this marriage (n. 2737, 2738). It is evident from this that "reward" in the internal sense is celestial conjugial love.
[3] That in the supreme sense "reward" is the Divine good of truth and truth of good, is evident from the fact that the heavenly marriage is thence derived; for this union is in the Lord, and proceeds from Him; and when it inflows into heaven, it makes the conjugial of good and truth, and thereby mutual love. From what has now been said and from what goes before, it is evident what is signified in the internal sense by these words of Leah: "God hath given me my reward, because I gave my handmaid to my man;" for by the "handmaid" is signified an affirmative means that serves for the conjunction of the external and the internal man (n. 3913, 3917, 3931). Thus before those things which are signified by the sons of the handmaids are affirmed and acknowledged, there cannot come forth any conjunction of good and truth, and thus not any mutual love; for these affirmations necessarily come first. This is what is meant by these words now before us.


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