(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 5948

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5948. Also let not your eye be sparing upon your stuff. That this signifies that things instrumental are not to be cared for, is evident from the signification of "stuff" or "vessels," as being things instrumental. That these are not to be cared for is signified by "let not your eye be sparing." There are things essential, and things instrumental. For an essential to work an effect anywhere, it must have an instrumental whereby to act; for just as an instrumental has been formed, so it acts. For example, the body is the instrumental of its spirit; the external man is the instrumental of the internal; memory-knowledge is the instrumental of truth; and truth is the instrumental of good (n. 3068, 3079); and so on.
[2] In the Word things instrumental are called "vessels;" in the present case "stuff," because they are said of the migration, thus of the things in the houses. But essential things are called in the Word "things," and are those which act by means of instrumental things. Thus as interior things act through exterior things, they are relatively essential. By instrumental things not being to be cared for, is meant that these must not be regarded as the end, but essential things; for insofar as instrumental things are regarded as the end, so far essential things withdraw themselves and vanish. Thus if memory-knowledge is regarded as the end, and truths are not cared for, truths at last so vanish away that it cannot be perceived whether there are any truths. Also if truths are regarded as the end, and good is not cared for, good at last so vanishes as not to be. Furthermore, with those who have earthly, or bodily, or worldly things as the end, so that these are their only care, and not heavenly things, heavenly things so vanish away that at last scarcely anything heavenly is acknowledged. These and similar things are what are signified by "let not your eye be sparing upon your stuff."
[3] But be it known that "essential" and "instrumental" are relative terms; that is, that an essential is so called because it acts by means of another thing as by its instrument or organ. But when another thing acts by means of that which was essential, then this becomes instrumental; and so on. Moreover in the created universe there is not anything essential in itself; this exists solely in the Highest, that is, in the Lord, who, because He is Esse or the Essential in itself, is called "Jehovah" from esse (being). All other things are only instrumental. From all this then it follows that because as before said essential things must be regarded as the end, and not instrumental things, the Lord alone must be so regarded.


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