Emanuel Swedenborg.

Arcana caelestia; the heavenly arcana contained in the Holy Scriptures, or Word of the Lord, unfolded, beginning with the book of Genesis: together with wonderful things seen in the world of spirits and in the heaven of angels (Volume 4) online

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Online LibraryEmanuel SwedenborgArcana caelestia; the heavenly arcana contained in the Holy Scriptures, or Word of the Lord, unfolded, beginning with the book of Genesis: together with wonderful things seen in the world of spirits and in the heaven of angels (Volume 4) → online text (page 1 of 67)
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Servant of the Lord jfesus Christ







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3353. THE greatest part of mankind believe, that when the
last judgment comes, all things are to be destroyed which are in
the visible world, that the earth will be consumed by fire, the
sun and the moon will be dissipated, and the stars will vanish
away ; and that a new heaven and a new earth will afterwards
«spring forth. Tliis opinion they have conceived fi'om prophetic
Revelations, wherein mention is made of such things coming to
pass ; but that the real case is otherwise, may appear from what
was shown above concerning the last judgment, n. 900, 931.
1850, 2117 to 2133 ; hence it is evident, that the last judgment
is nothing else but the end of the Church with one nation, and
its beginning with another ; which end and which beginning
then liave place, when there is no longer any acknowledgment
of tlie Lord, or what is the same thing, when there is no faith ;
etnd there is no acknowledgment of the Lord, and no faith,
when there is no charity, for faith cannot possibly exist but
\^^itll those who are in charity. That in such case there is an end
of the Church, and a translation thereof to others, appears man-
ifest ffom all those particulars, which the Lord Himself taught
und foretold in the Evangelists, concerning that last day, or
concerning the consummation of the age, viz. in Matthew, chap,
xxiv. ; in Mark, chap. xiii. ; and in Luke, chap. xxi. : but inas-
vnuch as these particulars cannot be comprehended by any one
without a key, which is their internal sense, it is permitted to
unfold them in the order in which they stand, according to that
sense : we shall begin with these words in Matthew, " The dis-
ciples came to Jesus^ saying^ Tell us when these things shall he, a/nd
what is the sign of thy coming^ and of the consummation of the
age : and Jesus answering^ said unto thenn^ See that no one seduce
you / for many shall come hi My name, saying, I am Christ, a/nd
shall seduce many : hut ye shall hear of wars and ifumours of
wa/rs ; see that ye he not disturhed ; for all these things must needs
he, hut the end is not yet. For nation shall he stirred up against
nation, a/ndkingdom against kingdom i andthereshallhe famines
and pestilences, and earthquakes. But all these things are the he
ginning of sorrows,^^ xxiv. 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. They who abide in the
sense of the letter, cannot know whether these, and the particu-

« GENESIS. [Chap. xxvi.

lars wliirh lollow in this chapter, were spoken concerning the
ilostnu'tii>n of J orusuileni aiul the dispersion of the Jewish nation^
or concerning the end of davs, which is called the last judg-
ment ; but tfiey who are in tlie internal sense see clearly, that
the subject here treated of is concerning the end of the Churchy
which end, in this and other passages, is what is called the
coming of the Lord, and the consummation of the age; and
inasmuch jii; this end is here understood, it may be known
that all the above particulars signify things appertaining to the
CMiurch ; but what they signify, may appear from each particu-
hir in the internal sense ; as for example : when it is said, mani/
n/iaU come in My name, saying, I am Christ, and shall seduce
many, by name here is not sio-nified name, nor by Christ Christ,.
but name signifies that by which the Lord is worshipped, see n.
'2724, 3006;" and Christ signifies essential truth, n. 3009, 3010 ;
tlius it is signitied, that there would come those who would as-
sert, that tins or that is an article of faith, or that this or that if?-
true, when yet it is neither an article of faith, nor true, but
false : by JieaHng of tears and ruTnours of wars, is signified, that
there would exist disputes and litigations concerning truth?,
which are wai*s in the spiritual sense : by nation heing stirred up
against nation, and 'kingdom against kingdom,, is signified, that
evil would combat with evil and what is false with what i»
false ; that nation denotes good, but in an opposite sense evi?,
may be seen, n. 1259, 1260, 1416, 1849 ; and that kingdom de-
notes truth, but in an opposite sense what is false, n, 1672^
2547 : and by there being famines, and pestilences, and earth-
quakes in divers places, is signified that there would be no
longer any knowledges of good and of truth, and thus that the
state of the Church would be changed, which is an earthquake
(motion of the earth).

3354. From these particulars it is evident, what is meant \j
these words of the Lord, viz. that they denote the first state of
the Church's perversion, which comes to pass when men begin
no longer to know what is good and what is true, but dispute
witli each other on such subjects, whence come falsities : mas-
much as this is the first state, it is said, that the end is not yety
and that these things are the beginning of soi^rows, and this state
is called earthquakes in divers places, wliereby is signified in the
internal sense, a change of the state of the Church in part, or at
first. By these things being said to the disciples, is signified,
that they are said to all who are of the Church, for the twelve
disciples represented all such, see n. 2089, 2129, 2130 ; where-
fore It is said, see that no one seduce you • also, ye shall hear of
wars and rumours of wars, see that ye he not disturbed.

3355. That earthquake (motion of the earth), in the internal
sense, denotes a change in the state of the Church, appear»
from the signification of earth, is denoting the Church, see n.

3354, 3355.] GENESIS. T

566, 662, 1066, 1067, 1262, 1733, 1850, 2117, 2118, 2928, and
from the signification of motion, as denoting change of state, in
the present case as to things appertaining to the Church, viz. as
to good and truth ; it is also manifest from other passages in the
Word, as in Isaiah, " It shall come to pass, he that fleeth from
the voice of fear shall fall into the pit, and he that cometh ip
out of the midst of the pit shall be taken in a snare, because tlu
cataracts from the deep are open, and the foundations of tht '
earth are shaken^ by breaking the earth is Iroken, by moving
the earth is moved, by reeling the earth reeleth as a drunkard, it
staggereth as a cottage, and the transgression thereof is heavy
upon it, and it shall fall, and shall not rise again : and it shall
come to pass in that day, Jehovah will visit upon the host of
lieight in height, and upon the kings of the ground upon the
ground,''^ xxiv. 18, 19, 20. In this passage, that earth denotes
the Church, is very evident, for the subject treated of is con-
cerning the Church, whose foundations are said to be shaken,
and itself to be broken and moved, to reel and stagger, when
good and truth are no longer known ; the kings of the grouna
denote truths, in the present case falses, upon which will be visi-
tation ; that kings denote truths, and in an opposite sense
falses, see n. 1672, 2015 ; and that ground like earth denotes
the Church, but with a difference, n. 566, 1068. Again, in the
same prophet, " I will render a man more rare than pure gold,
and a man than the gold of Ophir ; therefore I will shake the
heaven, and the earth shall he shaken (or moved) out of its place;
in the indignation of Jehovah of Sabaoth, and in the day of the
heating of his anger," xiii. 12, 13 ; speaking of a day of judg-
ment ; in which passage also earth . manifestly denotes the
Church, which is said to be shaken (or moved) out of its place,
when it is changed as to state : that place denotes state, may be
seen, n. 1273, 1274, 1275, 1377, 2625, 2837. Again, in the
same prophet, "Is this the man that shaketh (or moveth) the
earth, that shaketh (or moveth) kingdoms, that maketh the
world a desert, and destroyeth the cities thereof?" xiv. 16, 17 ;
speaking of Lucifer ; where earth denotes the Church, which he
is then said to shake (or move), when he claims to himself all
things thereto appertaining ; that kingdoms denote truths of the
Church may be seen, n. 1672, 2547. So in Ezechiel, " It shall
come to pass in that day, when Gog cometh upon the land of
Israel, My heat in Mine anger and in My zeal shall rise up, m
the fire of My indignation I will speak, it not in that day there
shall be a great earthquake (motion of the earth) upon the
ground of Israel," xxxviii. 18, 19, 20; where Gog denotes ex-
ternal worsliip separate from internal, and thereby rendered idol-
atrous, see n. 1151 ; earth and the ground of Israel denote the
spiritual Church ; earthquake (motion of the earth) denotes a
cnange of its state. So in Joel. " Jjefore Him the ea.rth was


GEXESTS. [CHAr. xxvi.

•»/K«'««/, tlu' licavens trembled, tlie sun and the moon were
'M\ i>4-il, 2495, which are said to be darkened, when
roods and truths are no longer acknowledged ; stars denote the
cnowiodgos of good and of trutJi, n. 2495, 2849. So in David,
*' T/te earth was shal'eii and was moved^ and the foundations of
tlie momitains trembled and were shaken, because he was
wrotli," Psalm xviii, 7 ; where the earth shaken and moved
«lenotes the state of the Church rendered perverse. So in the
Al»ocaly])se, " I saw further, when he opened the sixth seal, and

Online LibraryEmanuel SwedenborgArcana caelestia; the heavenly arcana contained in the Holy Scriptures, or Word of the Lord, unfolded, beginning with the book of Genesis: together with wonderful things seen in the world of spirits and in the heaven of angels (Volume 4) → online text (page 1 of 67)