(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 9776

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9776. And as for all the vessels of the Habitation in all the service thereof. That this signifies the memory-truths and goods that belong to the external man, is evident from the signification of "vessels," as being memory-knowledges (see n. 3068, 3079, 9394, 9544); from the signification of "the Habitation," as being heaven (n. 9594, 9596, 9632); and from the signification of "service," as being the external or natural of man (n. 3019, 3020, 5305, 7998). That man's external or natural is denoted by "service," is because it ought to serve the internal or spiritual of man. For man has been created according to the image of heaven and the image of the world, the internal or spiritual man according to the image of heaven, and the external or natural man according to the image of the world (see n. 9279). Just as the world ought to serve heaven, so man's external or natural ought to serve his internal or spiritual. Moreover, the natural was created for service; for it does not live from itself, thus can do nothing from itself; but from the internal or spiritual, that is, through this from the Lord. From this it is also evident that man's external or natural is nothing unless it is of service to the internal or spiritual, and that it becomes something in proportion as it is of service. To be of service is to obey, and the natural obeys when it does not take for itself from the understanding reasons which favor the evils of the loves of self and of the world; but when it complies with the dictates of reason and the doctrine of the church, which declare that good and truth ought to be done, not for the sake of self and the world as ends, but for the sake of good and truth itself. In this manner the Lord does these through man's heaven, that is, through his internal; for all good and truth are from the Lord, insomuch that good and truth with man are the Lord Himself. From all this it can be seen why it is that the external man must be a thing of service to the internal man.


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