(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 3993

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3993. Removing from thence every small cattle that is speckled and spotted. That this signifies that all the good and truth that is His will be separated wherewith there is mingled evil (signified by the "speckled"), and falsity (signified by the "spotted"), is evident from the signification of "removing," as being to separate; and from the signification of a "flock" (here one of goats and lambs), as being goods and truths (see n. 1824, 3519). That there are arcana in these and the following verses of this chapter, may be seen from many of the things being such as would not be worthy of mention in the Divine Word, unless there were within them things more arcane than appear in the letter; as that Jacob asked for his reward or hire the speckled and spotted among the goats, and the black among the lambs; that he then placed in the gutters rods of hazel and plane-tree with the bark peeled off to the white before the flocks of Laban when they grew warm, and that as regards the lambs, he set the face of the flock toward the variegated and the black in Laban's flock; and that he thus became rich, not by a good but by an evil art. In these things there does not appear anything Divine, whereas all things of the Word both in general and in particular, down to the smallest jot, are Divine. Moreover to know all this is not of the slightest avail for salvation; and yet the Word, being Divine, contains within it nothing that is not conducive to salvation and eternal life.
[2] From all this, and the like things elsewhere, everyone may conclude that some arcanum is contained within, and that each one of the particulars, notwithstanding its being of such a character in the letter, yields things more Divine within. But what they yield within cannot possibly appear to anyone, except from the internal sense; that is, unless he knows how these things are perceived by the angels, who are in the spiritual sense while man is in the historic natural sense. And how remote these two senses appear from each other, although most closely conjoined, may be clearly seen from the particulars already explained and from all the rest. The arcanum itself contained in this and the following verses of this chapter, can indeed be known in some degree from what has been already said concerning Laban and Jacob, namely, that "Laban" is such good as can serve to introduce genuine goods and truths, and that "Jacob" is the good of truth. But as few persons know what the natural is that corresponds to spiritual good, and still fewer what spiritual good is, and that there must be a correspondence between them; and as still fewer know that a kind of good which only appears to be good is the means of introducing genuine goods and truths, the arcana that treat of these things cannot be easily explained to the apprehension, for they fall into the shade of the understanding, and it is as if one were speaking in a foreign language, so that however clearly the matter may be set forth, the hearer does not understand. Nevertheless it is to be set forth, because that which the Word stores up in its internal sense is now to be opened.
[3] In the supreme sense the subject here treated of is the Lord, how He made His natural Divine; and in the representative sense the natural in man, how the Lord regenerates it, and reduces it to correspondence with the man that is within; that is, with him who will live after the death of the body, and is then called the spirit of the man, which when released from the body takes with it all that belongs to the outward man, except the bones and the flesh. Unless the correspondence of the internal man with the external has been effected in time, or in the life of the body, it is not effected afterwards. The conjunction of the two by the Lord by means of regeneration is here treated of in the internal sense.
[4] The general truths that man must receive and acknowledge before he can be regenerated have been treated of heretofore-being signified by the ten sons of Jacob and Leah and the handmaids-and, after the man has received and acknowledged these truths, the conjunction of the external man with the interior, or of the natural with the spiritual signified by "Joseph" is treated of. And now in accordance with the order the subject treated of is the fructification of good and the multiplication of truth, which come forth for the first time when this conjunction has been effected, and precisely so far as it is effected. This is what is signified by the "flock" that Jacob acquired by means of the flock of Laban. By "flock" here is signified good and truth, as elsewhere frequently in the Word; and by the "flock of Laban," the good represented by Laban, the nature of which has been already stated. The "flock of Jacob" signifies the genuine good and truth procured by means of the good represented by Laban, and there is here described the manner in which these genuine goods and truths are acquired.
[5] But this cannot by any means be comprehended unless it is known what is signified in the internal sense by "speckled," by "spotted," by "black," and by "white," which therefore must now be explained in the first instance. That which is speckled and spotted is that which is composed of black and white; and in general "black" signifies evil, and specifically what is man's own, because this is nothing but evil. But "dark" signifies falsity, and specifically the principles of falsity. "White" in the internal sense signifies truth, properly the Lord's righteousness and merit, and derivatively the Lord's righteousness and merit in man. This white is called "bright white," because it shines from the light that is from the Lord. But in the opposite sense "white" signifies man's own righteousness, or his own merit; for truth without good is attended with such self-merit, because when anyone does good, not from the good of truth, he always desires to be recompensed, because he does it for the sake of himself; whereas when anyone does truth from good, this good is then enlightened by the light that is from the Lord. This shows what is signified by "spotted," namely, the truth with which falsity is mingled; and what by "speckled," namely, the good with which evil is mingled.
[6] Actual colors are seen in the other life, so beautiful and resplendent that they cannot be described (see n. 1053, 1624); and they are from the variegation of light and shade in white and black. But although the light there appears as light before the eyes, it is not like the light in this world. The light in heaven has within it intelligence and wisdom; for Divine intelligence and wisdom from the Lord are there presented as light, and also illumine the universal heaven (n. 2776, 3138, 3167, 3190, 3195, 3222, 3223, 3225, 3339-3341, 3485, 3636, 3643, 3862). And in like manner although the shade in the other life appears as shade, it is yet not like the shade in this world; for the shade there is absence of the light, and accordingly is lack of intelligence and wisdom. As therefore the white and black there come forth from a light that has intelligence and wisdom within it, and from a shade that is lack of intelligence and wisdom, it is evident that by "white" and "black" are signified such things as have been stated above. Consequently as colors are modifications of light and shade in whites and blacks, as in planes, it is the variegations thus produced that are called colors (n. 1042, 1043, 1053).
[7] From all this we can now see that that which is "speckled," that is, that which is marked and dotted all over with black and white points, signifies the good with which evil is mingled; and also that that which is "spotted" signifies the truth with which falsity is mingled. These are the things that were taken from the good of Laban in order to serve for introducing genuine goods and truths. But how these can serve this purpose is an arcanum which can indeed be presented clearly before those who are in the light of heaven, because as before said within this light there is intelligence; but it cannot be clearly presented before those who are in the light of the world, unless their light of the world has been enlightened by the light of heaven, as is the case with those who have been regenerated; for every regenerate person sees goods and truths in his natural light from the light of heaven, because the light of heaven produces his intellectual sight, and the light of the world his natural sight.
[8] A few words shall be added to further explain how the case herein is. In man there is no pure good, that is, good with which evil is not mingled; nor pure truth, with which falsity is not mingled. For man's will is nothing but evil, from which there continually flows falsity into his understanding; because, as is well known, man receives by inheritance the evil successively accumulated by his progenitors, and from this he produces evil in an actual form, and makes it his own, and adds thereto more evil of himself. But the evils with man are of various kinds; there are evils with which goods cannot be mingled, and there are evils with which they can be mingled; and it is the same with the falsities. Unless this were so, no man could possibly be regenerated. The evils and falsities with which goods and truths cannot be mingled are such as are contrary to love to God and love toward the neighbor; namely, hatreds, revenges, cruelties, and a consequent contempt for others in comparison with one's self; and also the consequent persuasions of falsity. But the evils and falsities with which goods and truths can be mingled are those which are not contrary to love to God and love toward the neighbor.
[9] For example: If anyone loves himself more than others, and from this love studies to excel others in moral and civic life, in memory-knowledges and doctrinal things, and to be exalted to dignities and wealth in pre-eminence to others, and yet acknowledges and adores God, performs kind offices to his neighbor from the heart, and does what is just and fair from conscience; the evil of this love of self is one with which good and truth can be mingled; for it is an evil that is man's own, and that is born hereditarily; and to take it away from him suddenly would be to extinguish the fire of his first life. But the man who loves himself above others, and from this love despises others in comparison with himself, and hates those who do not honor and as it were adore him, and therefore feels a consequent delight of hatred in revenge and cruelty-the evil of such a love as this is one with which good and truth cannot be mingled, for they are contraries.
[10] To take another example: If anyone believes himself to be pure from sins, and thus washed clean, as one who is washed from filth by much water; when such a man has once performed repentance and has done the imposed penance, or after confession has heard such a declaration from his confessor, or after he has partaken of the Holy Supper-if he then lives a new life, in the affection of good and truth, this falsity is one with which good can be mingled. But if he lives a carnal and worldly life, as before, the falsity is then one with which good cannot be mingled.
[11] Again: The man who believes that a man is saved by believing well, and not by willing well; and yet wills well and in consequence does well-this falsity is one to which good and truth can be adjoined; but not so if he does not will well and therefore do well. In like manner if anyone is ignorant that man rises again after death, and consequently does not believe in the resurrection; or if he is aware of it, but still doubts, and almost denies it, and yet lives in truth and good-with this falsity also good and truth can be mingled; but if he lives in falsity and evil, truth and good cannot be mingled with this falsity, because they are contraries; and the falsity destroys the truth, and the evil destroys the good.
[12] Again: The simulation and cunning that have what is good as their end, whether it is that of the neighbor, or that of our country, or of the church, are prudence; and the evils that are mixed up with them can be mingled with good, from and for the sake of the end. But the simulation and cunning that have evil as their end, are not prudence, but are craft and deceit, with which good can by no means be conjoined; for deceit, which is an end of evil, induces what is infernal upon all things in man both in general and in particular, places evil in the middle, and rejects good to the circumference; which order is infernal order itself. And it is the same in numberless other cases.
[13] That there are evils and falsities to which goods and truths can be adjoined, may be seen from the mere fact that there are so many diverse dogmas and doctrines, many of which are altogether heretical, and yet in each there are those who are saved; and also that the Lord's church exists even among the Gentiles who are out of the church; and although they are in falsities, nevertheless those are saved who live a life of charity (n. 2589-2604); which could by no means be the case unless there were evils with which goods, and falsities with which truths, can be mingled. For the evils with which goods and the falsities with which truths can be mingled, are wonderfully disposed into order by the Lord; for they are not conjoined together, still less united into a one; but are adjoined and applied to one another, and this in such manner that the goods together with the truths are in the middle and as it were in the center, and by degrees toward the circumferences or circuits are such evils and falsities.
Thus the latter are lighted up by the former, and are variegated like things white and black by light from the middle or center. This is heavenly order. These are the things that are signified in the internal sense by the "speckled" and the "spotted."


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