(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 4899

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4899. Behold I sent this kid. That this signifies that it is enough that there is a pledge, is evident from the signification of a "kid of the goats," as being a pledge of conjugial love, or of conjunction (n. 4871), here only a pledge, because the kid was not accepted, for the reason (of which above) that there was nothing conjugial; and as this was the reason, therefore by thou hast not found her is signified if there is not anything conjugial; this also flows from indifference, of which above (n. 4897). It is needless to explain these things any further, for the reason stated above (n. 4893), that they would fall into the shade of the understanding; and whatever falls into this shade, falls into unbelief, as for instance that there must be what is conjugial in order that there may be a church, namely, the conjugial between truth and good; and also that there must be an internal in the external; and that without the two there is nothing of a church. In the present words the internal and external in the Jewish Church are described in the internal sense, and it is shown that as to that nation there was not any internal in the external; but that in respect to the statutes and laws abstracted from the nation, there was.
[2] Who at this day has any other belief than that there was a church with the Jewish nation, and that it was chosen and loved above all others, the reason for this belief being chiefly that miracles so many and so great were wrought among them, and that so many prophets were sent to them, and also that they had the Word. And yet that nation in itself had nothing of the church, for it was not in any charity, did not know even what genuine charity is, and also had no faith in the Lord. They indeed knew that He was to come, but supposed that it was to exalt them above all in the whole world; and because this was not done they entirely rejected Him, being unwilling to know anything about His heavenly kingdom. These things, which are the internals of the church, that nation did not acknowledge even in doctrine and still less in life. From all this alone it may be concluded that there was nothing of the church in that nation.
[3] It is one thing for the church to be with a people, and another for the church to be in a people - as for example, the Christian Church is with those who have the Word, and from doctrine preach the Lord; but still there is nothing of the church in them unless they are in the marriage of good and truth, that is, unless they are in charity toward the neighbor, and thence in faith; thus unless the internals of the church are in the externals. The church is not in those who are solely in externals separate from internals; neither is it in those who are in faith separate from charity, nor in those who acknowledge the Lord from doctrine and not life. Hence it is plain that it is one thing for the church to be with a nation, and quite another to be in the nation.
[4] In the internal sense of this chapter is described the church as it was with the Jewish nation, and as it was in that nation. The quality of the church with that nation is described by the conjunction of Tamar with Judah under the pretext of the duty of a husband's brother, and the quality of the church in that nation is described by the conjunction of Judah with Tamar as with a harlot. But a more particular description of these things is omitted for the reason spoken of above, for as there stated they would fall into the shade of the understanding. That the shade of the understanding is in these things may be seen from the fact that at this day scarcely anyone knows what the internal of the church is. And who knows that charity toward the neighbor consists in willing, and from willing in acting, and hence that faith consists in perceiving? When this is unknown, and especially when it is denied, as it is by those who make faith saving without the works of charity, into what shade must those things fall which are here said in the internal sense concerning the conjunction of what is internal with the external of the church with the Jewish nation and in that nation. They who do not know that charity is the internal and thus the essential of the church, stand very remote from the first step toward the understanding of such things, and therefore very far from the innumerable and ineffable things that are in heaven, where the things relating to love to the Lord and love toward the neighbor are the all of life, and consequently the all of wisdom and of intelligence.


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