Emanuel Swedenborg.

A brief exposition of the doctrine of the New church, which is meant by the New Jerusalem in the Apocalypse online

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BRIEF EXPOSITION



OF THE



.#OCTRINE



OF



THE NEW CHURCH,



WHICH IS MEANT BY THE



NEW JERUSALEM IN THE APOCALYPSE.



TRANSLATED FROM THE LATIN OF

EMANUEL SWEDENBORG,

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED AT AMSTERDAM IN THE YEAR 1769.



I John saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, pre-
pared as a Bride adorned for her Husband. And He that sat upon the throne said,
Behold f make all things new: and He said unto me, Write, for these words are truo
and faithful Apocalypse, chap. xxi. verse 2, 5.




^*9«



1^ Library



33oston:

PUBLISHED BY ADONIS HOWARD,

School Street, near V^uhiDgton Street.

1830.



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CONTENTS.

Page.



Iktroddction .•••.;•••••/.'••• u 'A* * * 'i* r

The Doctrinals of the Roman Catholics concerning Justification, from the U>uncii ot

Trent ^

The Doctrinals of the Protestants concerning Justification, from the Formula Con-

cordiae ^

A Sketch of the Doctrinals of the New Church ••••;••• ^^

The Disagreements between the Tenets of the Old and New Church, considered un-

der XXV Articles from page 14 to 03

I. That the Churches, which by the Reformation separated themselves from
the Roman Catholic Church, dissent in various Points of Doctrine ; but that
they all agree in the Articles concerning a Trinity of Persons in the Gtod-
head. Original Sin from Adam, Imputation of the Merit of Christ, and Jus-
tification by Faith alone 15

II. That the Roman Catholics, before the Reformation, held and taught exact-
ly the same Things as the Reformed did aHer it, in Respect to the four Arti-
cles above mentioned, namely, a Trinity of Persons in the Godhead, Original
Pin, Imputation of the Merit of Christ, and Justification by Faith therein ;
only with this difference, that they conjoined that Faith with Charity or
Good Works 16

III. That the leading Reformers, Luther, Melancthon, and Calvin, retained^all
the Tenets concerning a Triniiy of Persons in the Godhead, Original Sin,
Imputation of the Merita of Christ, and Justification by Faith, jusi as they
were and had been among the Roman Catholics ; but that they separated
Charily or Good Works from that Faith, and declared that they were not at
the same Timeof a saving Efficacy, with a View to be totally pevered from
the Roman Catholics as to the very Essentials of the Church, which are Faith
anil Charity 17

IV. That nevertheless the leading Reformers adjoined Good Works, and even
conjoined them, to their Faith, but in Man as a passive Subject; whereas
the Roman Catholics conjoin them in Man as an active Subject ; and that
notwithstanding there is actually a Conformity between the one and the
other as to Faith, Works, and Merits 18

V. That the whole System of Theology in the Christian World, at this Day, is
founded on an Idea of Three Gods, arising from the Doctrine of a Trinity

of Persons 20

VI. That the Tenets of the aforesaid Theology appear to be erroneous, after the
Idea of a Trinity of Persons, and the consequent Idea of Three Gods, has been
rejected, and the Idea of One God, in whom is a Divine Trinity, received in

its stead 24

VII. That ihen true saving Faith, which is a Faith in One Gk>d, united with Good

Works, is acknowledged and received 25

VIII. And that this Faith is in God the Saviour Jesus Christ, which in its simple
Form is as follows : I. That there is One God, in whom is a Divine Trinity,
and that He is the Lord Jesus Christ. II. That saving Faith is to believe in
Him. III. That evils ought to be shunned, Ijecause they are of the Devil and
from the Devil. IV. That Good Works ought to be done, because they are of
God and from God. V. And that they ought to be done by Man as of himself,
but with a belief, tiiat they are from the Lord, operating in Him and bv Him 26

IX. That the Faith of the present Day has separated Religion from the Cl.u'i'h,
since Religion consists in the Acknowledgment of One Gud, and i:i ihe
Worship of Him, from Faith grounded in Charity 28

X. That the Faith of the presenl Church cannot be conjf»i.;ed whh Charity,

and produce any Fruits, which are Good Works 30

XI. That from the Faith of the present Church, there results a Worshin of the
Mouth and not of the Life, whereas the Worship of the Mouth is accepted
by the Lord, in Proportion as it proceeds from the Worship oft he lii'e ... 31
XII. That the Doctrine of the present Church is interwoven with many Para-
doxes, which are to l)e embraced by Faith ; and that therefore its Tenets
gain Admission into the Memory only, and not into any Part of the Un-
derstanding above the Memory, but merely into Confirmations below it . . . 33
XIII. That the Tenets of the present Church cannot be learnt and retained with-
out great Difficulty, nor can they be preached or taught without using great
Care and Caution to conceal their Nakedness, because sound Reason neither
discerns nor perceives them 35



IT CONTENTS.

Page.

XIV. That the Doctrine of the Faith of the present Church ascribes to God hu-
man Properties ; as that He beheld Man from Anger, that He required to bo
reconciled, that He is reconciled through the Love He bore towards the Son,
and by His Intercession ; and that He required to be appeased by the Sight
of His Son's Sufferings, and thus to be brought back to Mercy ; and that
He imputes the Righteousness of His Son to an unrighteous Man who sup-
plicates it from Faith alone ; and that thus from an Enemy He makes Hira
a Friend, and from a Child of Wrath a Child of Grace

XV. That from the Faith of the present Church have been produced monstrous
Births ; such as instantaneous Salvation by an immediate Act of Mercy ;
Predestination ; the Notions that God has no Respect unto the Actions of
Men, but unto Faith alone ; that there is no Connexion betvkeen Charity
and Faith; that Man in Conversion is like a Stock, with many more Here-
sies of the same Kind •, likewise concerning the Sacraments of Baptism and
the Holy Supper, as to the Advantages reasonably to be expected from them,
when considered according to the Doctrine of Justification by Faith alone ;
as also with Regard to the Person of Christ : and that the Heresies from
the first Ages to the present Day, have sprung up from no other Source,
than from the Doctrine founded on the Idea of 'J hree Gods 39

XVI. That the last State of the present. Church, when it is at an End, is meant
by the Consummation of the Age, and the Coming of the Lord at that Pe-
riod, Matt, xxiv, 3 40

XVII. That the Infestation from Falses, and thence the Consummation of every
Truth, or the Desolation which at this Day prevails in the Christiaa
Churches, is meant by the great Affliction, such as was not from the Begin-
ning of the World, nor over shall be, Matt. xxiv. 21 41

XVIII. That there would be neither Love, nor Faith, nor the Knowledge of Good
and Truth, in the last Time of the Christian Church, when it draws to an
End, is understood by tliese Words in the same 24th Chapter of Matthew :
" After the Affliction of those Days, the Sun shall be darkened, and the
Moon shall not give her Light, and the Stars shall fall from Heaven, and

the Powers of the Heavens shall be shaken," verse 29 42

XIX. That they who are in the present justifying Faith, are meant by the He-
Goats in Daniel and in Matthew 51

XX. That they who have confirmed themselves in the present justifying Faith,
are meant in the Apocalypse by the Dragon and his two Beasts, and by the
Locusts ; and that this same Faith, when confirmed, is there meant by the
great City which is spiritually called Sodom and Egypt, where the two Wit-
nesses were slain, as also by the Pit of the Abyss, whence the Locusts came

forth 53

XXI. That unless a New Church be established by the Lord, no one can be saved •
and that this is meant by these words: "Unless those Days should be
shortened, there should noFlesh be saved," Matt. xxiv. 22 55

XXII. That the Opening and Rejection of the Tenets of the Faith of the present
Church, and the Revelation and Reception of the Tenets of the Faith of
the New Church, is meant by these words in the Apocalypse : " He that
eat upon the Throne said, behold, I will make all things new ; and He said
unto me, Write, for these Words are true and faithful," chap. xxi. 5 57

XXIII. That the New Church about to be established by the Lord, is the New Je-
rusalem, treated of in the Apocalypse, Chap. xxi. and xxii., which is there
called the Bride and the Wife of the Lamb 59

XXIV. That the Faith of the New Church cannot by any means be together with
the Faith of the former Church, and that in Case they be together, such a
Collision and Conflict will ensue, as to destroy every Thing relating to the
Church in Man 63

XXV. That the Roman Catholics of this Day know Nothing of the Imputation of
the MefU of Christ, and of Justification by Faith therein, into which their
Church was first initiated, because it is entirely concealed under their ex-
ternal Forms of Worship, which are nunierous ; for which Reason, there-
fore, if they recede hut in Part from their external Forms of Worship, and
immediately approach God the Saviour Jesus Christ, and administer the
holy Eucharist in both Kinds, they may be brought into the New Jerusalem,
or the New Church of the Lord, more easily than the Refornacd 64



Remarks on Imputation 67

Two Memorable Relations taken from the ApocaIyj>se Revealed 73

ArPKJJDix, containing the Faith of the New Heaven and New Church in its univer-
sal Form, and three Memorable Relations from the Apocalypse Revealed . . 79



A ^ Library*

BRIEF EXPOSITl5Kt^/ i'»WoT*;^



DOCTRINE OF THE NEW CHURCH,

WHICH IS MEANT BY THE NEW JERUSALEM,
IN THE APOCALYPSE.



1. Several works and tracts having been published by
me, during some years past, concerning the New Jerusalem,
whereby is meant a New Church about to be established by
the Lord, and the Apocalypse having been revealed, I am
come to a determination to lay before the world a complete
view of the doctrine of that church in its full extent ; but, as
this is a work of some years, I have thought it advisable to
draw up some sort of sketch thereof, in order that a general
idea may first be formed of that church and its doctrine ;
because when general principles precede, then the several
particulars will appear at full in a clear light, for these enter
into general principles, as things homogeneous into their
proper receptacles. This compendium, however, is not
designed for critical examination, but is barely offered to the
world by way of information, as its contents will be proved
at large in the work itself But it is necessary first to state
the doctrinals at present maintained concerning justification,
that the following contrast between the doctrines of the
present church, and thos6 of the New Church, may be clearly
understood.



The Doctrinals of the Roman Catholics concerning
Justification, from the Council op Trent.

2. In the bull of pope Pius IV., dated 13th November,
1564, are the following words : " I embrace and receive every
thing, both generally and particularly, which the most holy



2 A BRIEF EXPOSITION OF THE

Council of Trent hath determined and declared concerning
Original Sin and Justification P

3. From the Council of Trent, concerning Original Sin.
(a) That Adam, by his transgression, experienced an entire
change and depravation of nature, both in body and soul ;
and that the ill effects of Adam's transgression were not
confined to himself, but also extended to his posterity ; and
that it not only transmitted death and corporal sufferings
upon all mankind, but likewise sin, which is the death of the
soul, Sess. V. 1,2. {^) That this sin of Adam, which origi-
nally was a single transgression, and has been transmitted by
propagation, and not by imitation, is so implanted in the na-
ture of every man, as to be his own, and cannot be done away
by any other means than by the merits of the only Saviour
our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath reconciled us to God by His
blood, being made unto us righteousness, sanctification, and
redemption, Sess. v. 3. (^) That, by the transgression of
Adam, all men lost their innocence, and became unclean, and
by nature the children of wrath, Sess. vi. chap. 1.

4. Concerning Justification. (^) That our heavenly Father,
the Father of Mercies, sent Christ Jesus his Son into the
world, in the blessed fullness of time, as well to the Jews who
were under the law, as to the Gentiles who followed not after
righteousness, that they might all lay hold of righteousness,
and receive the adoption of sons. Him God offered to be a
propitiation through faith in His blood, not only for our sins,
but likewise for the sins of the whole world, Sess. vi. chap. 2.
(^) Nevertheless, all do not receive the benefit of His death,
but only they to whom the merit of His passion is communi-
cated ; so that, unless they are born again in Christ, they can
never be justified, Sess. vi. chap. 3. (*') That the beginning
of justification is to be derived from the preventing grace of
God through Christ Jesus, that is, from His call, Sess. vi.
chap. 5. (<^) That men are disposed to righteousness, when,
being stirred up by divine grace, and conceiving faith by
hearing, they are freely moved towards God, believing those
things to be true which are divinely revealed and promised ;
and especially this, that the ungodly are justified by God
through His grace, through redemption, which is by Christ
Jesus ; and when, being convinced of sin from the fear of
divine justice, by which they are profitably disquieted, they
are encouraged to hope, and to trust that God, for Christ's
sake, will be propitious to them, Sess. vi. chap. 6. {^) That
the consequence of this disposition and preparation is actual



DOCTRINE OF THE NEW CHURCH. d

justification, which is not only a remission of sins, but like-
wise a sanctification and renovation of the interior man, by
the reception of divine grace and gifts, whereby man from
being unrighteous becomes righteous, and from being an ene-
my a friend, so as to be an heir according to the hope of eter-
nal life, Sess. vi, chap. 7. (") The JiJial cause of justification
is the glory of God and of Christ, and life eternal. The rffi-
cicnt cause is God, who freely cleanses and sanctifies. The
meritorious cause is tlic dearly-beloved and only-begotten Son
of God, our Lord Jesus Christ, who, when we were enemies,
through the great love wherewith He loved us, by His most
holy passion upon the cross, merited for us justification, and
made satisfaction for us to God the Father. The instrumental
cause is the sacrament of baptism, which is a sacrament of
faith, without which none can ever be justified. The formal
rouse is the sole righteousness of God ; not that whereby He
is righteous Himself, but that whereby He makes us righteous,
with which being gifted by Him, we are renewed in the spirit
of our mind ; and arc not only reputed righteous, but are
truly called righteous, and aro so in reality, each according to
that measure which the Holy Spirit imparts to every one as it
pleaseth Him, Sess. vi. chap. 7, §2. (*") That justification
is a translation from that state, wherein man is born a child
of the first Adam, into a state of grace and adoption among
the sons of God by the second Adam, our Saviour Jesus Christ,
Sess. vi. chap. 4.

5. Concerning Faith, Charity, Good Works, and Merits.
(^) When the apostle declares, that man is justified by faith,
and freely, these words are to be understood in the sense
wherein the Catholic church hns uniformly held and express-
ed them, to wit, that we are said to be justified by faith, be-
cause faith is the commencement of man's salvation, the foun-
dation and root of all justification, without which it is impos-
sible to please God, and attain to the fellowship of His chil-
dren : but we are said to be justified freely, because none of
those things which precede justification, whether faith or
works, merit the actual grace of justification ; for if it be
grace, it is not of works, otherwise grace would not be grace,
Sess. vi. chap. 8. (^) Although none can be righteous, but
they to whom the merits of the passion of our Lord Jesus
Christ are communicated, nevertheless that is effected in jus-
tification, when, by the merit of the same most holy passion,
the love of God is infused by the Holy Ghost into the hearts
of those who are justified, and a^bideth in them : hence, in



4 A BRIEF EXPOSITION OF THE

the act of justification, man receives, together with the re-
mission of his sins, all these things infused into him at once
by Jesus Christ, in whom he is ingrafted by faith, hope, and
charity : for faith, unless charity be added to it, neither unites
perfectly to Christ, nor constitutes a living member of His
body, Sess. vi. chap. 7, § 3. (^) That Christ is not only a
Redeemer, in whom we are to have faith, but also a Lawgiver,
whom we must obey, Sess. vi. chap. 16, can. 21. (^) That
faith without works is dead and vain, because in Christ Je-
sus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircum-
cision, but faith which worketh by love : for faith without hope
and charity cannot avail unto eternal life ; wherefore also they
hearken to the word of Christ, *' If thou wilt enter into life,
keep the commandments:" thus they who are born again,
receiving true Christian righteousness, are commanded to keep
it white and unspotted, as their first robe, given them by Je-
sus Christ, instead of that which Adam lost both for himself
and us by his disobc^'lence, that they may present it before
the tribunal of our Lord Jesus Christ, and obtain eternal life,
Sess. vi. chap. 7, § 4. («) That there is a continual influx
of power from Jesus Christ Himself into those who are justi-
fied, as from a head into the members, and from a vine into
the branches ; which power always precedes, accompanies and
follows their good works, and without which they could not
by any means be acceptable and meritorious in the sight of
God ; wherefore we are to believe, that nothing more is want-
ing to those who are justified ; but they may be fully assured,
that by those works which have been wrought in God, they
have merited eternal life, which will be bestowed upon them
in due time, Sess. vi. chap. 10. (^) When we speak of our
own righteousness, we do not mean as though it were our own
from ourselves ; for that which is termed our righteousness, is
the righteousness of God, being infused into us by God through
the merit of Christ : far be it, therefore, from any Christian
man to trust or glory in himself, and not in the Lord, whose
goodness towards us men is so great, that he vouchsafes to
regard those things as our merits, which are His own gifts,
Sess. vi. chap. 16. (§) For of ourselves, as of ourselves, we
can do nothing; but by His co-operation, who strengthens
us, we can do all things : thus man hath not whereof to glory,
but all our glory is in Christ, in whom we live, in whom we
merit, in whom we make satisfaction, bringing forth fi-uits
worthy of repentance, which have their efficacy from Him,
are offered unto the Father by Him, and are accepted by the



DOCTRINE OP THE NEW CHURCH. 5

Father through Him, Sess. xiv. chap. 8. (^) Whosoever shall
say that man may be justified in the sight of God by his own
works, which are done either through the powers of human
nature, or through the teaching of the law, without divine
grace through Christ Jesus, let him be accursed, Sess. vi. can.
1. (•) Whosoever shall say, that man may believe, hope, and
love, (that is, have faith, hope, and charity,) as is necessary
in order that the grace of justification may be conferred upon
him, without the preventing inspiration of the Holy Spirit,
and His assistance, let him be accursed, Sess. vi. can. 2.
C^) Whosoever shall say, that man is justified without the
righteousness of Christ, whereby he hath merited for us, let
him be accursed, Sess. vi. can. 10. Not to mention many
more passages, principally relating to the conjunction of faith
with charity or good works, and condemning their separa-
tion.

G. Concerning Free-will. (^) That free-will is by no means
destroyed by Adam's sin, although it is debilitated and warped
thereby, Sess. vi. chap. 1. (^) Whosoever shall say, that the
free-will of man, when moved and stirred up by God, cannot
at all co-operate by concurring with God, who stirreth it up
and calleth it, whereby man may dispose and prepare him-
self to receive the grace of justification ; or that he cannot
dissent if he would, but that, like a thing inanimate, he is
merely passive, and has not the least power of action, let him
be accursed, Sess. vi. can. 4.

7. The Doctfinals of the Roman Catholics concerning Jus-
tification, as collected from the Decrees of the Council of
Trent, may he summed up and arranged in a series thus.
That the sin of Adam is transfused into the whole human
race, whereby his state, and likewise the state of all men, be-
came perverted, and alienated from God, and thus they were
made enemies and children of wrath ; that therefore God the
Father graciously sent His Son to reconcile, expiate, atone,
satisfy, and thus to redeem, by being made righteousness.
That Christ accomplished and fulfilled all this, by offering up
Himself a sacrifice to God the Father upon the cross, and
thus by his passion and blood. That Christ alone hath merit-
ed, and that this His merit is graciously imputed, attributed,
applied, and transferred, to the man who is recipient thereof,
by God the Father through the Holy Spirit; and that thus
the sin of Adam is removed from man ; concupiscence, how-
ever, still remaining in him as an incentive to sin. That jus-
tification is the remission of sins, and that from thence a
1*



6 A BRIEF EXPOSITION OF THE

renovation of the interior man takes place, whereby man from
an enemy becomes a friend, and frohi being a child of wrath,
a child of grace ; and that thus union with Christ is effected,
and the regenerate person becomes a living member of His
body.

8. That faith comes by hearing, when a man believes those
things to be true which are revealed from heaven, and trusts
in the promises of God. That faith is the beginning of man's
salvation, the foundation and root of all justification, without
which it is impossible to please God, and enter into the fel-
lowship of His children ; that justification is brought about by
faith, hope, and charity ; and that, unless faith be accompa-
nied by hope and charity, it is not living but dead, and inca-
pable of effecting union with Christ. That it is man's duty
to co-operate ; that he has the power to approach and recede,
otherwise nothing could be given unto him, for he would be
like an inanimate corpse. That, inasmuch as the reception of
justification reneweth man, and as this is effected by the ap-
plication of the merit of Christ, during man's co-operation, it
follows that works are meritorious ; but inasmuch as they are
done from grace, and by the Holy Spirit, and as Christ alone
hath merited, therefore God considers His own gifts in man
as meritorious ; whence it follows, that no one ought to at-
tribute any thing of merit to himself



The Doctrinals of the Protestants concerning Justi-
fication, FROM THE Formula ConcordivE.

The book from whence the following extracts are collected,
is called Forrnula ConcordicB, or Form of Concord, and was
composed by persons attached to the Augsburg confession ;
and as the pages will be cited where the quotations are to be
met with, it is proper to observe, that I have made use of the
edition printed at Leipsic in the year 1756.

10. From the Formula Concordim, concerning Original Sin.
{^) That since the fall of Adam, all men naturally descended
from him are born in sin, which brings damnation and eter-
nal death upon those who are not regenerated, and that the
merit of Christ is the only means whereby they are regenerat-
ed, consequently the only remedy whereby they are restored,
page 9, 10, 52, 53, 55, 317, 641, 644, and Appendix, p. 138,
139. (*>) That original sin is such a total corruption of nature,
that there is no spiritual soundness in the powers of man either
as to his soul or body, p. 574. i^) That it is the source of all



DOCTRINE OF THE NEW CHURCH. 7

actual sins, p. 317, 577, 639, 640, 942, Appendix, pJ39.


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Online LibraryEmanuel SwedenborgA brief exposition of the doctrine of the New church, which is meant by the New Jerusalem in the Apocalypse → online text (page 1 of 10)