(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 4904

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4904. And Moreover, behold she is with child to whoredoms. That this signifies, and that anything can be produced thence, is evident from the signification of "carrying in the womb" or "being with child," as being to produce something, for by "seed" is signified the truth of faith, and by "conception" its reception, whence by "carrying in the womb" or "being with child" is signified producing; and from the signification of "whoredom," as being falsity, namely, from their religiosity, as above (n. 4903). From this it is evident that by these words, "saying, Tamar thy daughter-in-law hath played the harlot; and moreover, behold, she is with child to whoredoms" is signified a perception that it is false that anything conjugial exists between them, and that anything can be produced thence. To be produced, when predicated of the church, denotes the good which is produced by means of truth; and it is produced when truth passes through the understanding into the will, and from the will into act. For as before said, the "seed" is the truth of faith, and "conception" is reception, and reception is effected when truth which is of the understanding passes into good which is of the will, or when truth which is of faith passes into good which is of charity; and when it is in the will, it is in its womb, and is then first produced; and when man is in good in act, that is, when he produces good from the will, thus from delight and freedom, it then goes forth from the womb or is born-which also is meant by being reborn or regenerated. From this it is evident what is signified in the spiritual sense by "being with child." Here however the contrary is signified-that nothing of good could be produced; for that nation which is here described was not in any truth, because not in any internal of the church, but in falsity.
[2] That to be reborn or regenerated, that is, to be made an internal man, was a thing wholly unknown to that nation, and consequently that it seemed to them as a harlot is evident from Nicodemus, who was a ruler of the Jews (John 3:1-13), for he said, "How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb?" (verse 4). It is known that the Lord opened the internal things of His kingdom and church, and yet these internal things were known to the ancients-as, that man should be reborn in order to enter into life; and that he should then put off the old man, that is, the loves of self and of the world with their evil desires, and should put on the new, that is, love toward the neighbor and to God; and also that heaven was in the regenerate man-besides other internal things. These things were known to those who belonged to the Ancient Church, but they were led to them by external things which were representative. But as such things were entirely lost with the Jewish nation, the Lord taught them, but abolished the representatives themselves, because most of these had respect to Himself; for the image must vanish when the form itself appears.
[3] He therefore set up a new church, which should not like the former be led by representatives to internal things, but should know them without representatives; and He enjoined instead only a few external observances, namely, baptism and the Holy Supper-baptism, that by it regeneration might be remembered; and the Holy Supper, that by it might be remembered the Lord, and His love toward the whole human race, and the reciprocal love of man to Him. These things are said that it may be known that the internal things of the church, which the Lord taught, were known to the ancients, but were so entirely lost with the Jewish nation that they were regarded merely as falsities.


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