(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 4823

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4823. And she conceived again, and bare a son. That this signifies evil, is evident from the signification of a "son," as being truth, and also good (n. 264); thus in the opposite sense falsity and also evil, but the evil which is from falsity. This evil in its essence is falsity, because it is from it; for one who from a false doctrine does what is evil, does also what is false; but because it is done in act, it is called evil. That by the firstborn son is signified falsity, and by this one evil, is evident from its being related of this son that he did evil in act, namely, that "he destroyed the seed to the earth, that he might not give seed to his brother. And the thing which he did was evil in the eyes of Jehovah; and He caused him also to die" (verses 9 and 10). Here also it is evident that this evil was from falsity. Moreover, in the ancient churches by the second son was signified the truth of faith in act; and therefore by this son falsity in act, that is, evil. That evil is what is signified by him, may be seen also from the fact that Er the firstborn was named by his father, or Judah; while this son, or Onan, was named by his mother, the daughter of Shua, as may be seen in the original tongue. For in the Word by a "man" is signified falsity, and by a "woman" the evil thereof (see n. 915, 2517, 4510). That by the daughter of Shua is signified evil, may be seen above (n. 4818, 4819). Wherefore Er, because he was named by his father, signifies falsity, and Onan, because he was named by his mother, signifies evil; for the former was thus as it were the father's son, but the latter as it were the mother's.
[2] In the Word "man and wife," and also "husband and wife," are often mentioned; and when "man and wife" are mentioned, by "man" is signified truth, and by "wife" good, and in the opposite sense by "man" is signified falsity, and by "wife" evil; but when "husband and wife" are mentioned, good is signified by "husband," and truth by "wife," and in the opposite sense evil is signified by "husband," and falsity by "wife." The reason of this mystery is this: in the celestial church the husband was in good, and the wife in the truth of this good; but in the spiritual church the man is in truth, and the wife in the good of this truth; such were they in fact then, and such are they now, for the interiors of man have undergone this change. Hence where celestial good and celestial truth from it are treated of in the Word, it is said "husband and wife;" but where spiritual good and spiritual truth from it are treated of, it is said "man and wife," or rather "man and woman." From this, as also from the expressions themselves, it is known what good and what truth are treated of in the Word, in its internal sense.
[3] This too is the reason of its having been occasionally stated that marriages represent the conjunction of good and truth, and of truth and good. Moreover, conjugial love has its origin from this conjunction of good with truth; and conjugial love with the spiritual from the conjunction of truth with good. Marriages also actually correspond to these conjunctions. From all this it is evident what is involved in the father's naming the first son, and the mother's naming the second, and also the third-as appears from the original tongue-namely, that the father named the first son, because by him was signified falsity, and that the mother named the second, because by him was signified evil.


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