Arcana Coelestia, by Emanuel Swedenborg, [1749-56], tr. by John F. Potts [1905-10], at sacred-texts.com
THE CONTENTS. In the internal sense a New Spiritual Church is here treated of, that was raised up by the Lord after the former church had altogether expired; and also the reception of faith with those who were of the church. "Sarah" here, is the truth Divine which expired; "burial," is raising up again; "Ephron and the sons of Heth," are those with whom the good and truth of the church were received; "Machpelah which is before Mamre," is regeneration; "Hebron in the land of Canaan," is a new church.2902.
Truth Divine, that it expired, is treated of (verses 1-3); and that the Lord set up again a new church (verse 4); and was kindly received (verses 5, 6); from which there was joy (verses 7, 12); that their first state was obscure, and they believed the good of charity and the truth of faith to be from themselves (verses 8-11, 14-15); but they were instructed that good and truth were not from themselves, but from the Lord (verse 13); and thus they were redeemed (verse 16); and regenerated (verses 17, 18); and thus there was a new church (verse 19); from the Gentiles (verse 20).2903.
THE INTERNAL SENSE. Verse 1. And the lives of Sarah were a hundred years and twenty years and seven years, the years of the lives of Sarah. "The lives of Sarah were," signifies the times and states of the church as to the truths Divine that preceded; "a hundred years and twenty years and seven years," signifies their fullness; "the years of the lives of Sarah," signifies while any truth Divine remained on earth.2904.
The lives of Sarah were. That this signifies the times and states of the church as to the truths Divine that preceded, is evident from the signification here of "lives;" and from the representation of "Sarah." "Lives," here, because they regard age and its periods, namely, infancy, youth, adult age, and old age, signify states, as do all times in general (see n. 2625, 2788, 2837); and because the following verses treat of the church, therefore "lives" signify the times and states of the church. That "Sarah" is truth Divine, may be seen above (n. 1468, 1901, 2063, 2172, 2173, 2198, 2507); from which it follows that by "the lives of Sarah were," in the internal sense are here signified the times and states of the church as to the truths Divine which preceded.  That Sarah, while alive as Abraham's wife, represented the Lord's Divine Truth conjoined with His Divine Good, may be seen from the places above cited; and because the Lord's Divine Truth was represented by her, so also the truth Divine of the church is signified; for in the church there is no other truth than that which is the Lord's. Truth which is not from Him is not truth; as is also evident from the Word and from the doctrine of faith derived from it. It is evident from the Word, in John: A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from heaven (John 3:27). Without Me ye can do nothing (John 15:5). And the same is evident from the doctrine of faith, in that the all of faith, that is, all truth, is from the Lord.  All and each of the representatives and significatives in the Word, in the highest sense regard the Lord; hence is the very life of the Word; and as they regard the Lord, they regard His kingdom also, for the Lord is the all in His kingdom; the Divine things which are from the Lord in His kingdom make the kingdom. Therefore insofar as an angel, spirit, or man receives good and truth from the Lord, and believes that it is from the Lord, so far he is in His kingdom; but insofar as he does not receive and does not believe that it is from the Lord, so far he is not in His kingdom. Thus the Divine things that are from the Lord make His kingdom, or heaven; and this is what is meant by the Lord being the all in His kingdom.2905.
A hundred years and twenty years and seven years. That this signifies their fullness, is evident from the signification of a "hundred," as being what is full (see n. 2636); and of "twenty," or twice ten, as being also what is full (see n. 1988); and of "seven," as being what is holy (see n. 395, 433, 716, 881); thus it is the fullness or the end of what is holy belonging to the church that is here signified. (That numbers in the Word all signify things, may be seen above, n. 482, 487, 647, 648, 755, 813, 1963, 1988, 2075, 2252.)  Their fullness, that is, the fullness of the states and times of the church, signifies their end; for the case with the church is like that of the ages of man, of which the first is childhood, the second youth, the third adult age, the fourth old age; the last, or old age, being called the fullness or end. It is also like the times and states of the year; of which the first is spring, the second summer, the third autumn, and the fourth winter; and this last is the end of the year. It is also like the times and states of the day, the first of which is dawn, the second noon, the third evening, and the fourth night; and when this has come, there is fullness or the end. To all these are the states of the church compared in the Word, and they are signified by the same; for by times are signified states (see n. 2625, 2788, 2837).  The good and truth with those who are of the church are wont to decrease in this manner; and when there are no longer any good and truth (or as is said, when there is no longer any faith, that is, no charity) then the church has come to its old age, or its winter, or its night; and its time and state then are called "decision," "consummation," and "fulfillment" (see n. 1857). The same is signified when it is said of the Lord that He came into the world in the fullness of times, or when there was fullness; for there was then no longer any good, not even natural good; and consequently there was no truth. These are the things specifically signified by what is said in this verse.2906.
The years of the lives of Sarah. That this signifies while any truth Divine remained, is evident from the signification of a "year," as being an entire period of the church from beginning to end; thus from the signification of the "years," as being periods (see above, n. 2905); and from the signification of the "lives of Sarah," as being states as to truth Divine (of which also just above, n. 2904); thus denoting here the limit when there was no longer any truth Divine remaining; which also follows from what immediately precedes.  That a "year" signifies the entire time of a state of the church from beginning to end, or what is the same, an entire period; and consequently that "years" signify times or periods within the general period, may be seen from the following passages in the Word. In Isaiah: Jehovah hath anointed Me to preach good tidings unto the afflicted; He hath sent Me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and an opening of every kind to the bound, to proclaim the year of Jehovah's good pleasure, and the day of vengeance to our God (Isa. 61:1-2); said of the Lord's advent; the "year of Jehovah's good pleasure" denotes the time of a new church. In the same: The day of vengeance is in My heart, and the year of My redeemed is come (Isa. 63:4); this too is said of the Lord's advent; the "year of the redeemed" denotes the time of a new church. In the same: It is the day of vengeance to Jehovah; the year of retributions for the controversy of Zion (Isa. 34:8); where the signification is similar.  The same time is also called the "year of visitation" in Jeremiah: I will bring evil upon the men of Anathoth, in the year of their visitation (Jer. 11:23). In the same: I will bring upon Moab the year of their visitation (Jer. 48:44). Still more plainly in Ezekiel: After many days thou shalt be visited; in the futurity of years thou shalt come into the land that is brought back from the sword, that is gathered out of many peoples, upon the mountains of Israel, which shall be for a waste continually (Ezek. 38:8); "the futurity of years" denotes the last time of the church, which then becomes no church, those being rejected who before were of the church, and others received from elsewhere. In Isaiah: Thus hath the Lord said unto me, Yet within a year, according to the years of a hireling, and all the glory of Kedar shall be consumed (Isa. 21:16); here also is meant the last time.  In Ezekiel: Thou art become guilty in thy blood that thou hast shed, and art defiled in thine idols which thou hast made; and thou hast caused thy days to draw near, and art come even unto thy years; therefore have I made thee a reproach unto the nations, and a mocking to all the lands (Ezek. 22:4); "to come even unto the years" denotes to the end, when the Lord withdraws from the church. In Isaiah: Now hath Jehovah spoken, saying, "Within three years, as the years of a hireling, and the glory of Moab shall be brought into contempt, with all his great multitude, and the remnant shall be very small (Isa. 16:14); "within three years" also denotes the end of the former church. That "three" denotes what is complete, and a beginning, may be seen above (n. 1825, 2788).  Similar is the signification of "seven," and also of "seventy" (n. 720, 728, 901); and therefore it is said in Isaiah: And it shall come to pass in that day that Tyre shall be forgotten seventy years, according to the days of one king; after the end of seventy years it shall be to Tyre as in the song of a harlot. And it shall come to pass after the end of seventy years that Jehovah will visit Tyre, and she shall return to her harlot hire (Isa. 23:15-17); "seventy years" denotes the entire period, from the time at which the church began even till it expires; which is also meant by "the days of one king," for a "king" signifies the truth of the church (see n. 1672, 1728, 2015, 2069). The "seventy years" of captivity in which the Jews were, also involve something similar, of which likewise it is said in Jeremiah: These nations shall serve the king of Babel seventy years; and it shall come to pass when seventy years are fulfilled, I will visit their iniquity upon the king of Babel, and upon this nation, saith Jehovah (Jer. 25:11-12; 29:10).  That a "year," and also "years," denote the entire period of a church, or the time of its duration, may be seen still further in Malachi: Behold I send Mine angel, and he shall prepare the way before Me; and the Lord whom ye seek shall suddenly come to His temple, even the angel of the covenant whom ye desire; behold He cometh, said Jehovah Zebaoth; and who may endure the day of His coming? Then shall the offering of Judah and Jerusalem be pleasant unto Jehovah, according to the days of an age, and according to the ancient years (Mal. 3:1-2, 4); where the advent of the Lord is treated of; the "days of an age" denote the Most Ancient Church; "ancient years," the Ancient Church; the "offering of Judah," worship from celestial love; and the "offering of Jerusalem," worship from spiritual love; that Judah is not meant here, nor Jerusalem, is plain. In David: I have considered the days of old, and the years of the ages (Ps. 77:5); where the "days of old" and the "years of the ages" denote the same churches. This is still more plain in Moses: Remember the days of an age, understand the years of generation and generation; ask thy father, and he will show thee; thine elders, and they will tell thee. When the Most High gave to the nations their inheritance, when He separated the sons of man (Deut. 32:7-8).  That a "year" and "years" denote the full time of a church, is also plain in Habakkuk: O Jehovah, I have heard Thy fame, I was afraid; O Jehovah, revive Thy work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years make known; in anger remember mercy. God will come from Teman, and the Holy One from Mount Paran (Hab. 3:2-3); This is said of the Lord's advent; "in the midst of the years" denotes in the fullness of times; and what is meant by the fullness of times" may be seen just above (n. 2905).  As a "year" and "years" signify the full time between its two limits, which are the beginning and the end when predicated of the Lord's kingdom on earth (that is, the church) so they signify what is eternal when predicated of the Lord's kingdom in heaven. As in David: O God, Thy years are to generation and generation; and Thou art He, and Thy years shall not be brought to an end. The sons of Thy servants shall continue, and their seed shall be established before Thee (Ps. 102:24, 27-28). In the same: Thou wilt add days to the days of the king, his years shall be as generation and generation; he shall dwell before God forever (Ps. 61:6-7); where "years" denote what is eternal, for this treats of the Lord and His kingdom.  The lambs which were offered for burnt-offering and sacrifice being "sons of their year" (see Lev. 12:6; 14:10; Num. 6:12; 7:15, 21, 27, 33, 39, 45, 51, 57, 63, 69, 75, 81, and other places), signified the celestial things of innocence in the Lord's kingdom, which are eternal. And for this reason also the burnt-offering of calves that were "sons of a year" is mentioned as being most grateful (Micah 6:6).  That in the internal sense a "year" does not signify a year, is also evident from the fact that the angels, who are in the internal sense of the Word, cannot have an idea of any year; but because a year is a full period of time in nature, which belongs to the world, therefore instead of a year they have an idea of what is full in respect to states of the church, and of what is eternal in respect to states of heaven; times with them are states (see n. 1274, 1382, 2625, 2788, 2837).2907.
Verse 2. And Sarah died in Kiriath-arba, the same is Hebron in the land of Canaan; and Abraham came to mourn for Sarah, and to weep for her. "Sarah died," signifies night as to the truths of faith; "in Kiriath-arba, the same is Hebron in the land of Canaan," signifies in the church; "and Abraham came to mourn for Sarah, and to weep for her," signifies the Lord's state of grief.2908.
Sarah died. That this signifies night as to the truths of faith, is evident from the signification of "dying," of "dead," and of "death," when these are predicated of the church, as denoting its last time, when all faith, that is, charity, has expired; which time, throughout the Word, is called "night" (see n. 221, 709, 1712, 2353); that "dying" denotes ceasing to be such, may be seen above (n. 494). The same is further evident from the representation of Sarah, as being truth Divine (see above, n. 2904); and thus it is plain that the signification is as has been said.2909.
In Kiriath-arba, the same is Hebron in the land of Canaan. That this signifies in the church, is evident from the signification of "Kiriath-arba," as being the church as to truth; and from the signification of "Hebron in the land of Canaan," as being the church as to good. In the Word, and especially in the prophetical parts, where truth is treated of, good is treated of also, because of the heavenly marriage in everything of the Word (see n. 683, 793, 801, 2173, 2516, 2712); therefore here, when Kiriath-arba is mentioned, it is also said, "the same is Hebron in the land of Canaan." (That the "land of Canaan" denotes the Lord's kingdom, may be seen above, n. 1413, 1437, 1607; also that the places in that land were variously representative, n. 1585, 1866.)  In regard to Kiriath-arba which is Hebron, it was the region where Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob dwelt. That Abraham dwelt there, appears from what was said in a preceding chapter: "Abraham came and dwelt in Mamre, which is in Hebron" (Gen. 13:18). That Isaac dwelt there, appears from what is said in a later chapter: "Jacob came unto Isaac his father, to Mamre, to Kiriath-arba, the same is Hebron, where Abraham and Isaac sojourned" (Gen. 35:27). That Jacob dwelt there is evident from Joseph being sent to his brethren by Jacob his father, from the valley of Hebron (Gen. 37:14). From the representation of the three, as spoken of above, it is plain that Kiriath-arba which is Hebron represented the church before Jerusalem did.  That every church in process of time decreases, until it has nothing left of faith and charity, and then is destroyed, was also represented by Kiriath-arba which is Hebron, in its being possessed by the Anakim, by whom were signified dire persuasions of falsity (n. 581, 1673). That it was possessed by the Anakim, may be seen in several places (Num. 13:21, 22; Josh. 11:21; 14:15; 15:13, 14; Judges 1:10); and that it came to its end or consummation and was destroyed, was represented by all things therein being given by Joshua to the curse (Josh. 10:36, 37; 11:21); and the Anakim being smitten by Judah and Caleb (Judges 1:10; Josh. 14:13-15; 15:13, 14). And that there was again a new church, was represented by Hebron being assigned to Caleb for an inheritance, as to field and villages (Josh. 21:12); but the city itself was made a city of refuge (Josh. 20:7; 21:13); and a priestly city for the sons of Aaron (Josh. 21:10, 11); in the inheritance of Judah (Josh. 15:54).  Hence it is evident that Hebron represented the Lord's spiritual church in the land of Canaan. And likewise on this account David was required by the command of Jehovah to go to Hebron, and was there anointed to be king over the house of Judah; and after he had reigned there seven years and six months, he went to Jerusalem and took possession of Zion (see 2 Sam. 2:1-11; 5:5; 1 Kings 2:11); and then for the first time the spiritual church of the Lord began to be represented by Jerusalem, and the celestial church by Zion.2910.
And Abraham came to mourn for Sarah and to weep for her. That this signifies the Lord's state of grief on account of the night as to truths of faith in the church, is evident from the representation of Abraham, as being the Lord (see n. 1893, 1965, 1989, 2011, 2172, 2501, 2833, 2836). That to "mourn" and to "weep" signify a state of grief is evident without explication; to "mourn" has respect to grief on account of night as to good in the church, and to "weep" as to truths. These two verses treat of the end of the church; its end is when there is no longer any charity. This state is treated of in many places in the Word, especially in the Prophets, and in John in Revelation; the Lord also describes this end by many things in the Evangelists, and calls it the "consummation of the age," and also "night."  For with churches the case is this: In the beginning charity is fundamental with them; everyone then loves another as a brother, and is affected from good, not for his own sake, but for the sake of the neighbor, the community, the kingdom of the Lord, and above all things for the Lord's sake. But in process of time charity begins to grow cold and to become naught. Afterwards comes hatred of one another; which, although it does not appear outwardly, because in civic society men are under laws, and are under outward bonds of restraint, still is nourished inwardly. These outward bonds of restraint come from the love of self and of the world; they are the love of honor and eminence, the love of gain and hence also of power, thus the love of reputation. Under these loves hatred against the neighbor conceals itself, which is of such a nature that men desire to have command over all, and to possess all things that are another's; and when these desires are opposed, they treasure in their hearts contempt for the neighbor, they breathe revenge, they take delight in his ruin, and even practice cruelties so far as they dare. Into things like these does the charity of the church at its end at last decline, and then it is said of it that there is no longer any faith, for where there is no charity there is no faith, as has been shown many times.  There have been a number of churches, known to us from the Word, that had such an end. The Most Ancient Church thus expired about the time of the flood; in like manner the Ancient Church which was after the flood; also a second Ancient Church, called the Hebrew Church; and at last the Jewish Church, which was by no means a church that commenced from charity, but was only the representative of a church, to the intent that by representatives communication with heaven might survive, until the Lord came into the world. Afterwards a new church was raised up by the Lord, called the Church of the Gentiles, which was internal, for interior truths had been revealed by the Lord; but this church is now at its end, because now there is not only no charity, but there is hatred instead of charity; which hatred, though it does not appear outwardly, yet is within, and breaks out whenever possible with anyone, that is, whenever outward bonds do not restrain.  Besides these churches there have been very many others that are not so fully described, which in like manner decreased and destroyed themselves. There are many causes for such decrease and self-destruction; one is that parents accumulate evils, and by frequent practice, and at length by habit, they implant them in their nature, and so by inheritance transcribe them upon their offspring; for what parents acquire from actual life by frequent use is rooted in their nature and is transmitted by inheritance to posterity; and unless the posterity is reformed or regenerated, it is continued to successive generations and is all the time increasing; and thus the will becomes more prone to evils and falsities. But when a church is consummated and perishes, then the Lord always raises up a new church somewhere; but rarely, if ever, from the people of the former church; but from nations that have been in ignorance. Concerning these in what follows.2911.
Verse 3. And Abraham rose up from upon the faces of his dead, and spoke unto the sons of Heth, saying. "Abraham rose up," signifies elevation; "from upon the faces of his dead," signifies in that night; "and spoke unto the sons of Heth, saying," signifies those with whom there was to be a new spiritual church.2912.
Abraham rose up. That this signifies elevation, is evident from the signification of "rising up," as implying some elevation (see n. 2401, 2785); here elevation from grief, since a new church was about to be raised up in place of the former that perished. From upon the faces of his dead. That this signifies in that night, is evident from the signification of "dying," of "death," and of "dead," as denoting night in regard to the state of the church (concerning which see above, n. 2908).2913.
And spoke unto the sons of Heth, saying. That this signifies those with whom there was to be a new spiritual church, is evident from the signification of "Heth," and of the "Hittites." There were many inhabitants of the land of Canaan, who are enumerated in various places in the Word, and among them the Hittites (see Gen. 15:20; Exod. 3:8, 17; 13:5; 23:23; Deut. 7:1; 20:17; Josh. 3:10; 11:1, 3; 12:8; 24:11; 1 Kings 9:20; and other places). Most of these were from the Ancient Church (that this extended through many lands, and likewise through the land of Canaan, may be seen above, n. 1238, 2385). All who were of that church acknowledged charity as the principal, and all their doctrinal things were of charity or of life. Those who elaborated doctrinal things of faith were called "Canaanites," and were separated from the other inhabitants of the land of Canaan (Num. 13:29; see n. 1062-1063, 1076).  Among the better inhabitants of the land of Canaan were the Hittites, as is evident from the fact that Abraham dwelt among them, and afterwards Isaac and Jacob, and had their burial place there; also from their bearing themselves piously and modestly toward Abraham, as is very plain from what is related of them in this chapter (particularly in verses 5-6, 10-11, 14-15). And thus by the Hittites, as by a well-disposed nation, is represented and signified the spiritual church, or the truth of the church. But with these, as with the rest of the Ancient church, it came to pass that in course of time they declined from charity or the good of faith; and consequently the falsity of the church is afterwards signified by them (as in Ezek. 16:3, 45, and other places). That still the Hittites were among the more honored, is evident from the fact that there were Hittites with David, as Abimelech (1 Sam. 26:6), and Uriah, who was a Hittite (2 Sam. 11:3, 6, 17, 21), whose wife was Bathsheba, of whom Solomon was born to David (2 Sam. 12:24). (That "Heth" signifies the more external knowledges regarding life, which are the external truths of the spiritual church, may be seen above, n. 1203.)  This verse treats of the new church that the Lord sets up anew when the former church expires; and the verses that follow treat of the reception of faith with them. A church among the sons of Heth is not treated of; but the raising up by the Lord of the spiritual church in general, after the former ceases or is consummated; the sons of Heth are merely those who represent and signify this. See what has been said above concerning churches, namely: That in process of time a church decreases and is contaminated (n. 494, 501, 1327, 2422): That it recedes from charity, and produces evils and falsities (n. 1834, 1835): That then the church is said to be laid waste and desolate (n. 407-411, 2243): That a church is set up anew with the Gentiles, and why (n. 1366). That in the church which is being vastated, there is always preserved something of the church as a nucleus (n. 468, 637, 931, 2422): That unless there were a church on earth, the human race would perish (n. 468, 637, 931, 2422): That the church is as the heart and lungs in the grand body, that is, in the human race (n. 637, 931, 2054, 2853): The quality of the spiritual church (n. 765, 2669): That charity constitutes the church, not faith separate (n. 809, 916): That if all had charity, the church would be one, although they should differ as to doctrinal things and worship (n. 1285, 1316, 1798, 1799, 1834, 1844, 2385): That all men on earth who are in the Lord's church, though scattered through the world, still as it were make a one, as in the heavens (n. 2853): That every church is internal and external, and both together constitute one church (n. 409, 1083, 1098, 1100, 1242): That the external church is nothing, if there is no internal church (n. 1795): That the church is compared to the rising and the setting of the sun, also to the seasons of the year, and the times of the day (n. 1837): That the Last Judgment is the last time of the church (n. 900, 931, 1850, 2117, 2118).2914.
Verse 4. I am a sojourner and a dweller with you; give me a possession of a sepulcher with you, and I will bury my dead from before me. "I am a sojourner and a dweller with you," signifies their first state, that although the Lord was unknown to them, still He could be with them; "give me a possession of a sepulcher with you" signifies that they might be regenerated; "and I will bury my dead from before me," signifies that thus He would come forth and rise again from the night which is with them.2915.
I am a sojourner and a dweller with you. That this signifies their first state, that although the Lord was unknown to them still He could be with them, is evident from the representation of Abraham, as being the Lord (frequently shown above); and from the signification of being a "sojourner with them," and of being a "dweller with them," as being unknown and yet with them. That this is the internal sense is plain from what precedes and what follows; for here a new church is treated of, and in this verse its first state, which is such that first of all the Lord is unknown to them; and yet because they live in the good of charity, and in what is just and equitable as to civil life, and in what is honorable and becoming as to moral life, they are such that the Lord can be with them; for the Lord's presence with man is in good, and therefore in what is just and equitable, and further in what is honorable and becoming (what is honorable being the complex of all the moral virtues; and what is becoming being simply its form); for these are goods which succeed in order, and are the planes in man on which conscience is founded by the Lord, and consequently intelligence and wisdom. But with those who are not in these goods (that is to say from the heart or affection), nothing of heaven can be inseminated; for there is no plane or ground, thus there is no recipient; and as nothing of heaven can be inseminated, neither can the Lord be present there. The Lord's presence is predicated according to the good, that is, according to the quality of the good; the quality of the good is according to the state of innocence, of love, and of charity, in which the truths of faith have been implanted or can be implanted.2916.
Give me a possession of a sepulcher with you. That this signifies that they can be regenerated, is evident from the signification of a "sepulcher," which in the internal sense of the Word signifies life or heaven, and in the opposite sense death or hell. That it signifies life or heaven, is because the angels, who are in the internal sense of the Word, have no idea of a sepulcher because they have none of death; and therefore instead of a sepulcher they perceive nothing else than continuation of life, and thus resurrection-for man rises again as to his spirit, and is buried as to his body (see n. 1854). And because burial" signifies resurrection, it also signifies regeneration, for regeneration is man's first resurrection, as he then dies in respect to the former man, and rises again as to the new. By regeneration a man from being dead becomes alive; hence comes the signification of a "sepulcher" in the internal sense. That the idea of regeneration occurs to the angels when the idea of a sepulcher is presented is plain also from what was said above about little children (n. 2299).  That in the opposite sense a "sepulcher" signifies death or hell is because the evil do not rise again into life; and therefore when the evil are treated of and a sepulcher is mentioned, no other idea then occurs to the angels than that of hell; this is the reason why hell in the Word is also called a "sepulcher."  That a "sepulcher" signifies resurrection, and also regeneration is plain in Ezekiel: Therefore prophesy, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord Jehovih, Behold I will open your sepulchers, and cause you to come up out of your sepulchers, O My people; and I will bring you to the ground of Israel. And ye shall know that I am Jehovah, when I have opened your sepulchers, and caused you to come up out of your sepulchers, O My people; and shall put My spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I shall place you on your own ground (Ezek. 37:12-14); where the Prophet treats of the bones that were made to live, and in the internal sense of regeneration. That he treats of regeneration is plainly evident, for it is said, "when I shall put My spirit in you and ye shall live, and I shall place you on your own ground." "Sepulchers" here denote the former man and his evils and falsities, to "open," and to "come up out of" which is to be regenerated. Thus the idea of a sepulcher perishes and is as it were put off, when the idea of regeneration or of the new life comes in.  That the sepulchers were opened, and many bodies of the saints that were sleeping arose and went forth out of their sepulchers after the Lord's resurrection, and entered into the holy city, and appeared unto many (Matt. 27:52, 53), involves what is similar, namely resurrection because of the Lord's resurrection, and in a more interior sense every resurrection. That the Lord raised Lazarus from the dead (John 11:1 and the following verses) also involves the raising up of a new church from the Gentiles; for all the miracles wrought by the Lord, because they were Divine, involved states of His church. The signification also is similar where it is said that the man who was cast into the sepulcher of Elisha, when he touched his bones, revived (2 Kings 13:20, 21); for by Elisha was represented the Lord.  As "burial" signified resurrection in general, and every resurrection, therefore the ancients were very solicitous about their burials and the places where they should be buried-as Abraham, that he should be buried in Hebron in the land of Canaan; also Isaac and Jacob, with their wives (Gen. 47:29-31; 49:30-32); and Joseph, that his bones should be carried from Egypt into the land of Canaan (Gen. 50:25; Exod. 13:19; Josh. 24:32); David, and the kings who came after him, that they should be buried in Zion (1 Kings 2:10; 11:43; 14:31; 15:8, 24; 22:50; 2 Kings 8:24; 12:21; 14:20; 15:7, 38; 16:20). The reason of this was that the land of Canaan and Zion represented and signified the Lord's kingdom, and burial represented and signified resurrection; but that the place effects nothing in regard to resurrection must be evident to everyone.  That "burial" signifies resurrection to life is also plain from other representatives as that there should be no wailing for the wicked, and that they should not be buried but cast out (Jer. 8:2; 14:16; 16:4, 6; 20:6; 22:19; 25:33; 2 Kings 9:10; Rev. 11:9); and that wicked persons who had been buried should be cast forth from their sepulchers (Jer. 8:1, 2; 2 Kings 23:16-18). In the opposite sense however, a "sepulcher" signifies death or hell (see Isa. 14:19-21; Ezek. 32:21-23, 25, 27; Ps. 88:5, 6, 11, 12; Num. 19:16, 18, 19).2917.
I will bury my dead from before me. That this signifies that thus He would come forth and rise again from the night in which they were, is evident from the signification of "burying," as being to rise again (see just above, n. 2916); and from the signification of "dead," as being the state of shade or of night, that is, of ignorance (see also above, n. 2908, 2912), out of which the Lord comes forth and rises with man, when He is acknowledged. Before this He is in night, because He does not appear; He rises again with everyone who is being regenerated.2918.
Verses 5, 6. And the sons of Heth answered Abraham, saying unto him, Hear us, my lord, thou art a prince of God in the midst of us; in the choice of our sepulchers bury thy dead; none of us shall withhold from thee his sepulcher from burying thy dead. "The sons of Heth answered Abraham, saying unto him," signifies a reciprocal state with those who are of the new church; "Hear us," signifies reception; "my lord, thou art a prince of God in the midst of us," signifies the Lord as to the good and truth Divine with them; "in the choice of our sepulchers," signifies good pleasure as to regeneration; "bury thy dead," signifies that so they would come forth from night and be raised up into life; "none of us shall withhold his sepulcher from thee," signifies that they were all prepared to receive regeneration; "from burying thy dead," signifies so that they might come forth from night and be raised up.2919.
The sons of Heth answered Abraham, saying unto him. That this signifies a reciprocal state with those who are of the new church, is evident from the signification of "answering," when assent is given to that which is asked, as being what is reciprocal; and from the signification of the "sons of Heth," as being those with whom there is to be a new spiritual church (of which above, n. 2913).2920.
Hear us. That this signifies reception, is evident from the signification of "hear us," when it is a mode of answering to express assent, as being reception.2921.
My lord, thou art a prince of God in the midst of us. That this signifies the Lord as to the good and truth Divine with them, is evident from the signification of "lord," and of a "prince of God;" and from the signification of "in the midst of us." That it is said "Lord" where good is treated of, is evident from the Word of the Old Testament; for there Jehovah is now called Jehovah, now God, now Lord, now Jehovah God, now the Lord Jehovih, now Jehovah Zebaoth; and this from a hidden cause which can be known only from the internal sense. In general, when the subject is the celestial things of love, or good, it is said "Jehovah;" but when it is the spiritual things of faith, or truth, it is said "God;" when both together are treated of, it is said "Jehovah God;" but when the Divine power of good or omnipotence is treated of, it is said "Jehovah Zebaoth," that is, "Jehovah of Armies," and likewise "Lord," so that "Jehovah Zebaoth" and "Lord" are of the same sense and signification. From this, namely, the power of good, men and angels are also called "lords;" and in the opposite sense those are called "servants" in whom there is no power, or who have power from the former. From all this it may be seen that here "my lord" in the internal sense signifies the Lord as to good; which will be illustrated from the Word in the passages that follow. "Prince of God," however, signifies the Lord as to the power of truth, or as to truth; as is evident from the signification of a "prince," or of "princes," as being primary truths (see n. 1482, 2089); and also from its being said "prince of God," for it is said "God" where truth, and "Jehovah" where good is treated of, (see n. 2586, 2769, 2807, 2822). That "in the midst of us" means among them, or with them, is evident without explication.  That in the Word of the Old Testament "Jehovah Zebaoth" and "Lord" are of the same sense and signification, is evident in Isaiah: The zeal of Jehovah Zebaoth shall perform this; the Lord sent a word into Jacob, and it hath fallen on Israel (Isa. 9:7-8). And in another place: A mighty king shall rule over them, saith the Lord, Jehovah Zebaoth (Isa. 19:4). In Malachi: Behold the Lord whom ye seek shall suddenly come to His temple, even the angel of the covenant whom ye desire; behold He cometh, saith Jehovah Zebaoth (Mal. 3:1). Still more plainly in Isaiah: I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne high and lifted up; above Him stood the seraphim; six wings and six wings for each; the one cried to the other, Holy, holy, holy, Jehovah Zebaoth. Woe is me, for I am undone, for mine eyes have seen the King, Jehovah Zebaoth. And I heard the voice of the Lord (Isa. 6:1, 3, 5, 8); from which it is plain that "Jehovah Zebaoth" and "the Lord" have the same meaning.  But the name "Lord Jehovih" is used especially when the aid of omnipotence is sought and implored as in Isaiah: Say unto the cities of Judah, Behold your God. Behold the Lord Jehovih will come in a strong one, and His arm shall rule for Him; behold His reward is with Him and His work before Him. He shall feed His flock like a shepherd (Isa. 40:9-11). That the name "Lord Jehovih" is used when such aid is sought, may be seen further in Isa. 25:8; 40:10; 48:16; 50:4-5, 7, 9; 61:1; Jer. 2:22; Ezek. 8:1; 11:13, 17, 21; 12:10, 19, 28; 13:8, 13, 16, 18, 20; 14:4, 6, 11, 18, 20, 21; Micah 1:2; Ps. 71:5, 16; and frequently elsewhere.  And besides this in the Word of the Old Testament the name "Lord" involves the like as "Jehovah," namely, that it is said "Lord" when good is treated of; wherefore also "Lord" is similarly distinguished from "God" as "Jehovah" is distinguished from "God." As in Moses: Jehovah your God, He is God of gods and Lord of lords (Deut. 10:17). In David: Give thanks unto the God of gods, for His mercy is forever; give thanks unto the Lord of lords, for His mercy is forever (Ps. 136:1-3).  But in the Word of the New Testament, with the Evangelists and in Revelation, "Jehovah" is nowhere named; but instead of "Jehovah" it is said "Lord," and this from hidden causes of which we shall speak below. That in the Word of the New Testament it is said "Lord," instead of "Jehovah" is very plain in Mark: Jesus answered, The first of all the commandments is, Hear O Israel, The Lord our God is one Lord; therefore thou shalt love the Lord thy God from all thy heart, and from all thy soul, and from all thy thought, and from all thy strength (Mark 12:29-30). The same is thus written in Moses: Hear O Israel, Jehovah our God is one Jehovah; and thou shalt love Jehovah thy God from all thy heart, and from all thy soul, and from all thy strength (Deut. 6:4-5); where it is plain that "the Lord" is said instead of "Jehovah." So too in John: I saw and behold there was a throne set in heaven, and one sitting upon the throne; and round about the throne four animals full of eyes before and behind; each one of them had six wings round about, and was full of eyes within; and they said, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty (Rev. 4:2, 6, 8). But in Isaiah we read: I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne high and lifted up. Above him stood the seraphim; six wings and six wings for each; the one cried to the other, Holy, holy, holy, Jehovah Zebaoth (Isa. 6:1, 3, 5, 8). Here "the Lord" is said instead of "Jehovah"; or "the Lord God Almighty" instead of "Jehovah Zebaoth" (that the "four animals" are seraphim or cherubim is plain in Ezekiel, 1:5, 13-15, 19; 10:15). That "the Lord" in the New Testament is "Jehovah" is also evident from many other passages as in Luke: There appeared to Zacharias an angel of the Lord (Luke 1:11); an "angel of the Lord" meaning an "angel of Jehovah." In the same: The angel said to Zacharias concerning his son, Many of the sons of Israel shall he turn unto the Lord their God (Luke 1:16); "unto the Lord their God" meaning "unto Jehovah God." In the same: The angel said to Mary concerning Jesus, He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God shall give unto Him the throne of David (Luke 1:32); "the Lord God" here is instead of "Jehovah God." In the same: Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath exalted itself upon God my savior (Luke 1:46-47); here too "the Lord" is instead of "Jehovah." In the same: Zacharias prophesied, saying, Blessed be the Lord God of Israel (Luke 1:68); "the Lord God" is instead of "Jehovah God." In the same: An angel of the Lord stood by the shepherds; and the glory of the Lord shone round about them (Luke 2:9); an angel of "the Lord," and the glory of "the Lord," instead of an angel of "Jehovah," and the glory of "Jehovah." In Matthew: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord (Matt. 21:9; 23:39; Luke 13:35; John 12:13); "in the name of the Lord," instead of "in the name of Jehovah." Besides many other passages as Luke 1:28; 2:15, 22-24, 29, 38, 39; 5:17; Mark 12:10, 11.  Among the hidden causes of their calling Jehovah "the Lord" were the following. If at that time it had been said that the Lord was the Jehovah so often named in the Old Testament (see n. 1736), men would not have accepted it, for they would not have believed it; and moreover the Lord did not become Jehovah as to the Human also until He had completely united the Divine Essence to the Human Essence, and the Human to the Divine (see n. 1725, 1729, 1733, 1745, 1815, 2156, 2751). The full unition was accomplished after the last temptation, which was that of the cross; and for this reason, after the resurrection the disciples always called Him "the Lord" (John 20:2, 13, 15, 18, 20, 25; 21:7, 12, 15-17, 20; Mark 16:19, 20); and Thomas said, "My Lord and my God" (John 20:28). And because the Lord was the Jehovah so often named in the Old Testament, He therefore also said to the disciples: Ye call Me Master and Lord, and ye say well, for I am (John 13:13-14, 16); and these words signify that He was Jehovah God; for He is here called "Lord" as to good, and "Master" as to truth. That the Lord was Jehovah is also meant by the words of the angel to the shepherds: Unto you is born this day a Saviour who is Christ the Lord (Luke 2:11); He is called "Christ" as the Messiah, the Anointed, King; and "Lord" as Jehovah; "Christ" in respect to truth, and "Lord" in respect to good. One who does not closely study the Word could not know this, for he would think that our Savior was called Lord, like others, from the common title of reverence; when yet He was so called because He was Jehovah.2922.
In the choice of our sepulchers. That this signifies good pleasure as to regeneration, is evident from the signification of "choosing," of "choice," and of "chosen," as being what is wished for, or what is of good pleasure; and from the signification of a "sepulcher" as being resurrection and regeneration (concerning which above, n. 2916).2923.
Bury thy dead. That this signifies that so they would come forth from night and be raised up into life, is evident from the signification of being "buried," as being to rise again, or to be raised up to life (see n. 2916); and from the signification of the "dead," as being night in respect to the goods and truths of faith (see n. 2908, 2912, 2917).2924.
None of us shall withhold from thee his sepulcher. That this signifies that they were all prepared to receive regeneration, is evident from the signification of a "sepulcher" as being regeneration (see n. 2916); and from the signification of "not withholding," as being willingness to receive.2925.
From burying thy dead. That this signifies that they might come forth from night and be raised up, is evident from the signification of being "buried," and of "dead," as being to be raised up from night in respect to the goods and truths of faith (concerning which see just above, n. 2923, where the same words occur).2926.
Verses 7, 8. And Abraham rose up, and bowed himself to the people of the land, to the sons of Heth. And he spoke with them, saying, If it is with your soul that I should bury my dead from before me, hear me, and intercede for me with Ephron the son of Zohar. "Abraham rose up, and bowed himself," signifies the Lord's joy on account of the kind reception; "to the people of the land, to the sons of Heth," signifies by those who were to be of the new spiritual church; "and he spoke with them, saying," signifies thought and perception concerning them; "if it is with your soul," signifies if from the affection of truth from the heart; "that I should bury my dead from before me," signifies that they desired to come forth from night and rise again; "hear me," signifies that they should comply; "and intercede for me with Ephron the son of Zohar," signifies those with whom the truth and good of faith could be received.2927.
Abraham rose up, and bowed himself. That this signifies the Lord's joy on account of the kind reception, is evident from the signification of "rising up," as involving something of elevation (see n. 2401, 2785; for the mind is elevated by gladness and joy, and it is therefore here said that he "rose up"); also from the representation of Abraham, as being the Lord (as often shown above); and from the signification of "bowing himself," as being to rejoice. Bowing is a movement of the body expressive both of humiliation and of joy; that here it is expressive of joy, and is on account of kind reception, is plain from what precedes and what follows.2928.
To the people of the land, to the sons of Heth. That this signifies by those who are of the spiritual church, is evident from the signification of "people," as being those who are in truths, thus the spiritual (see n. 1259, 1260); from the signification of the "land," as being the church (see n. 662, 1066, 1067, 1262, 1733, 1850, 2117, 2118 at the end); and from the signification of the "sons of Heth," as being those who are of the new spiritual church (n. 2913). The "people of the land" are sometimes mentioned in the Word where it treats of Israel and of Jerusalem, and by them in the internal sense is signified the spiritual church, or those who are of the spiritual church; for by "Israel" and by "Jerusalem" this church is meant. When Judah and Zion are treated of, the term "nation" is used, for by "nation" is signified the celestial church; and this church is meant by "Judah" and by "Zion."  That it is said the "people of the land" when Israel and Jerusalem are treated of (thus where it treats of the spiritual church), is evident from many passages in the Word; as in Ezekiel: Say unto the people of the land, Thus saith the Lord Jehovih to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, to the ground of Israel, They shall eat their bread in sadness, and shall drink their waters in devastation; that her land may be laid waste; the cities that are inhabited shall be laid waste, and the land shall be desolate (Ezek. 12:19-20); where in the internal sense Jerusalem and the ground of Israel denote the spiritual church; "bread" and "waters," charity and faith, or good and truth; the "land," the church itself, which is said to be "wasted" as to good, and "desolate" as to truth.  In the same: Gog and his multitude shall the house of Israel bury, that they may cleanse the land seven months; and all the people of the land shall bury them (Ezek. 39:11-13); "Gog" denotes external worship separate from internal, which is idolatrous (n. 1151); the "house of Israel," the spiritual church in respect to good; the "people of the land," the same in respect to truth; the "land," the church itself. The "land" denotes the church for the reason that the land of Canaan represented the Lord's kingdom and thus the church, for the Lord's kingdom on earth is the church.  In the same: All the people of the land shall be for this oblation for the prince in Israel; and upon that day shall the prince prepare for himself and for all the people of the land a bullock for a sin-offering. The people of the land shall bow themselves at the door of the gate in the sabbaths and in the new moons; and the people of the land shall enter, in the appointed feasts (Ezek. 45:16, 22; 46:3, 9); where the New Jerusalem, that is, the Lord's spiritual kingdom, is treated of; they who are in it are the "people of the land;" the "prince" is truth Divine which is from the Lord.  The sons of Heth are so called because by "sons" are signified truths (see n. 489, 491, 533, 1147, 2623). Truths are predicated of the spiritual, because the spiritual are initiated into good by means of truths, that is, into charity by means of faith; and because they do good from the affection of truth, not knowing that it is good from anything else than because they are so instructed. Their conscience also is founded in these truths of faith (see n. 1155, 1577, 2046, 2088, 2184, 2507, 2715, 2716, 2718).2929.
And he spoke with them, saying. That this signifies thought and perception concerning them, is evident from the signification of "speaking and saying," as being to think and perceive (see n. 1898, 1919, 2080, 2271, 2287, 2506, 2515, 2552, 2619).2930.
If it is with your soul. That this signifies if it is from the affection of truth from the heart, is evident from the signification of "soul" in the internal sense. In many passages of the Word it is said "from the heart and from the soul," or "from the whole heart and from the whole soul," and by this is signified that it is from all the will and all the understanding. That man has two faculties, namely, will and understanding, may be known to everyone; also that the will is a separate faculty from the understanding, for we are able to understand good and truth and yet will what is evil and false. From the beginning man was so created that his will and understanding should make a one, so that he should not think one thing and will another, nor will one thing and think another. Such is the state with the celestial, and such it was in the celestial church, which was called "Man" or "Adam." But with the spiritual, or in the spiritual church, one faculty has been separated from the other, that is, the understanding from the will; and the man is reformed by the Lord as to the intellectual part, and in this there is formed a new will and a new understanding (see n. 863, 875, 895, 897, 927, 928, 1023, 1044, 2256). The new will which is from the Lord, in this part, is what is called "heart," and the new understanding is what is called "soul;" and when it is said, "from all the heart and from all the soul," by this is meant from all the will and from all the understanding.  This is what is meant by "heart and soul" in Moses: Thou shalt love Jehovah thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength (Deut. 6:5). And again: Now, O Israel, what doth Jehovah thy God require of thee, but to fear Jehovah thy God, to walk in all His ways, and to love Him, and to serve Jehovah thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul (Deut. 10:12; 11:13). Again: This day Jehovah thy God commandeth thee to do these statutes and judgments; and thou shalt keep and do them with all thy heart and with all thy soul (Deut. 26:16). in the book of Kings: David said to Solomon, Jehovah will establish His word which He spoke concerning me, saying, If thy sons take heed to their way to walk before Me in truth, with all their heart and with all their soul; there shall not be cut off from thee a man from upon the throne of Israel (1 Kings 2:4). In Matthew: Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul (Matt. 22:37; Mark 12:29, 30).  The same is also predicated of Jehovah or the Lord, because thence comes the affection of good which is of the will, and the affection of truth which is of the understanding, with the man of the church. As in Samuel: I will raise Me up a faithful priest, according to that which is in My heart and in My soul (1 Sam. 2:35). And in Jeremiah: I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will plant them in this land in truth, with all My heart and with all My soul (Jer. 32:41). And in other passages throughout the Word, "soul" signifies the affection of truth, as in Isaiah: With my soul have I desired Thee in the night; yea, with my spirit in the midst of me have I sought Thee early; for according to Thy judgments to the earth, the inhabitants of the world learn righteousness (Isa. 26:9); here "soul" denotes the affection of truth; "spirit," the affection of good (that "judgments" are predicated of truths, and "righteousness" of good, may be seen above, n. 2235).  In the same: The fool speaketh folly, to make empty the hungry soul; and to cause the thirsty for drink to fail (Isa. 32:6); the "hungry soul" denotes the desire for good, which the fool maketh empty; the "soul thirsty for drink" denotes the desire for truth, which the fool causeth to fail. In Jeremiah: Their soul shall be as a watered garden, and I will water the wearied soul, and every sorrowful soul will I fill (Jer. 31:12, 25); here "soul" denotes the affection of good and of truth. Again: All her people sigh, they seek bread, they have given their pleasant things for food to restore the soul. The comforter that restoreth my soul is far from me; my sons are desolate. They sought food for themselves, to restore their soul (Lam. 1:11, 16, 19); "soul" denotes the life of the affection of good and truth; "food," wisdom and intelligence.  It is said that "soul" signifies the affection of truth from the heart, because there are affections of truth which are not from the heart; as those which are from the love of self or of being eminent, from the love of the world or of making gain, also from the love of meriting; from these in like manner there come forth affections of truth, but they are not genuine; being from the will of the flesh, and not from the heart: that which is from the heart is from the Lord. Moreover "soul" in the Word signifies in the universal sense all life (see n. 1000, 1005, 1040, 1742) for in the universal sense the soul is that from which another thing is, and lives; thus the soul of the body is its spirit, for from this the body lives; but the soul of the spirit is its still more internal life, from which it has wisdom and understanding.2931.
That I should bury my dead from before me. That this signifies that they desired to come forth from night and to rise again, is evident from the signification of "burying," which is to rise again; and of "dead," as denoting night in respect to the goods and truths of faith (see above, n. 2923, 2925, where the same words occur).2932.
Hear me. That this signifies that they should comply, is evident from the signification of "hearing," as being to obey, or comply (see n. 2542).2933.
And intercede for me with Ephron the son of Zohar. That this signifies those with whom the truth and good of faith could be received, is evident from the fact that the field and the cave in the field, where Sarah was to be buried, belonged to Ephron; and as "burial" signifies regeneration (n. 2916), it follows that by "Ephron" are signified those with whom the truth and good of faith could be received. The sons of Heth also represent the same, inasmuch as they were of Ephron's city and were his people. By "interceding" is here signified to be prepared to receive.2934.
Verse 9. That he may give me the cave of Machpelah, which he hath, which is in the end of his field; in full silver let him give it to me, in the midst of you, for a possession of a sepulcher. "That he may give me the cave of Machpelah, which he hath," signifies the obscurity of faith they have; "which is in the end of his field," signifies where there is little of the church; "in full silver" signifies redemption by means of truth; "let him give it to me, in the midst of you, for a possession of a sepulcher" signifies possession thus, through regeneration.2935.
That he may give me the cave of Machpelah. That this signifies obscurity of faith, is evident from the signification of a "cave," as being what is obscure (see n. 2463); and from the signification of "Machpelah," as being faith that is in obscurity. A "cave" signifies obscurity because it is a dark place; when a "cave of a mountain" is spoken of, it then means obscurity of good; but when it is said the "cave of the field of Machpelah," it then means obscurity of truth. As it is here said, the "cave of Machpelah," and Machpelah was where there was a field at the end of which was the cave, obscurity of truth is here meant, or what is the same, obscurity of faith; and hence also it is plain that "Machpelah" means faith which is in obscurity.  Those who are being regenerated and being made spiritual are in the greatest obscurity as to truth. Good indeed flows in with them from the Lord, but not so much truth; wherefore between the Lord and the good with man there exist parallelism and correspondence, but not with the truth (see n. 1832). The primary cause of this is that those here treated of do not know what good is; and even if they should know, still they do not believe from the heart; and so long as good is in obscurity with them, so long is truth, for all truth is from good. But to make this more clear: They know only very obscurely that the Lord is good itself, and that all is good which is of love to Him and of charity toward the neighbor, and that all is truth which asserts this and confirms it; indeed they even cherish doubts, and admit reasonings against these things; and so long as they are in such a state, the light of truth from the Lord cannot flow in; they even think of the Lord as another man, and not as God; and they think of love to Him from some worldly love; what the genuine affection of charity toward the neighbor is they scarcely know, nor indeed what charity is and what the neighbor, when yet these are essentials. Hence it is evident how far the spiritual are in obscurity; and they are still more so before regeneration, which is the state here treated of.2936.
Which is in the end of his field. That this signifies where there is little of the church, is evident from the signification of the "end" or extremity, as being what is little; and from the signification of "field," as being the church, and also doctrine which is of the church (see n. 368). That the "end" or extremity denotes little, may be seen from the description of land, ground, and fields, in the Word; their middle part signifies much, but the extremity signifies little; this extremity is also called the part round about. The reason is that the representative ceases at the extremity; thus here the "end of the field" signifies little of the church.2937.
In full silver. That this signifies redemption through truth, is evident from the signification of "silver," as being truth (see n. 1551); and from the signification of "let him give me in silver," or "for silver," as being to buy, and in the spiritual sense to redeem. That the spiritual are said to have been "bought with silver," may be seen above (n. 2048), that is, redeemed by truth. The reason of this is that they are regenerated, that is, are introduced to good, through the truth of faith; for the spiritual man has no perception of good, as the celestial man has; but truth is that by means of which he knows, and from which he afterwards acknowledges, that there is good; and when he acknowledges and believes, then it becomes good to him, and he is affected by it as good, which becomes such in quality as is the truth which he has. Hence it is that the spiritual are said to have been redeemed by means of truth. But still the quality of the good is not born and produced from truth, but from the influx of good into truth of that quality.2938.
Let him give it to me, in the midst of you, for a possession of a sepulcher. That this signifies possession thus, through regeneration, is evident without explication; for that a "sepulcher" is regeneration was shown above (n. 2916).2939.
Verse 10. And Ephron was sitting in the midst of the sons of Heth; and Ephron the Hittite answered Abraham in the ears of the sons of Heth, of all that went in at the gate of his city, saying. "Ephron was sitting in the midst of the sons of Heth," signifies those by whom the good and truth of faith could primarily be received; "and Ephron the Hittite answered Abraham," signifies their state of reception; "in the ears of the sons of Heth," signifies obedience; "of all that went in at the gate of his city, saying," signifies as to the doctrinal things through which there is faith.2940.
Ephron was sitting in the midst of the sons of Heth. That this signifies those by whom the good and truth of faith could primarily be received, is evident from the representation of "Ephron," and also from the signification of the "sons of Heth," as being those with whom the truth and good of faith could be received, and with whom there could be a new church (see n. 2913, 2933); and from the signification of "the midst" or "in the midst," as being what is primary, or principal, and also inmost (see n. 1074). That "the midst" in the internal sense signifies what is primary or principal, and also inmost, is from representatives in the other life; for when any good is represented by spiritual ideas, then what is best is presented in the midst, and what is less and less good is presented successively from the middle outward; and lastly at the circumference are those things which are not good; it is from this that "in the midst" denotes both what is primary or principal and what is inmost. In this manner likewise are represented the ideas of thought, and also affections, and all changes of state; the goods or evils being thus varied according to their situation in respect to the middle. The origin of this is from the form of spiritual and heavenly things, which is such.2941.
And Ephron the Hittite answered Abraham. That this signifies their state of reception, is evident from the signification of "answering," when assent is given, as being reception; as is also plain from what now follows. Ephron is here called "the Hittite," so as to represent the spiritual church as the head and chief.2942.
In the ears of the sons of Heth. That this signifies obedience, is evident from the signification of the "ear," as being obedience (see n. 2542).2943.
Of all that went in at the gate of his city, saying. That this signifies as to the doctrinal things through which there is faith, is evident from the signification of "gate," as being entrance, thus that which introduces (in like manner as "door," see n. 2145, 2152, 2356, 2385); and from the signification of "city," as being the truth of faith (see n. 402, 2268, 2449, 2451, 2712). Cities in the Ancient Church were not like the cities of later times and of the present day, that is, assemblages and gatherings of people; but they were the dwelling together of separate families. The family of one parent constituted a city, as for instance the city of Nahor (to which Abraham's servant came when he was to betroth Rebekah to Isaac, Gen. 24:10) was Nahor's family which was there; and Shalem, the city of Shechem (to which Jacob came when he journeyed from Paddan-aram, Gen. 33:18; 34) was the family of Hamor and Shechem, which was there; and so with the other cities of that time.  And as they had learned from the most ancient people that nations and families represented the heavenly societies, and thus the things of love and charity (n. 655, 1159), so when a "city" is mentioned instead of a family, and "people" instead of nation, truth is signified which is of faith. Hence also the "city of God" and the "holy city," in the genuine sense signify faith in the Lord; and as a walled town or city signified faith, the "gate" of the city signified doctrinal things, because these introduce to faith. This in the representative Jewish Church was also signified by the judges and the elders sitting in the gate of the city and judging there; as is plain from the historical parts of the Word; and also in Zechariah: These are the words that ye shall do: Speak ye every man the truth with his companion, judge truth and the judgment of peace in your gates (Zech. 8:16). Also in Amos: Hate the evil and love the good, and establish judgment in the gate (Amos 5:15). (That a "gate" also signifies the way of access to the rational mind, and that this mind is compared to a city, may be seen above, n. 2851.)2944.
Verse 11. Nay, my lord, hear me; the field give I thee, and the cave that is therein I give it thee; to the eyes of the sons of my people give I it thee: bury thy dead. "Nay, my lord, hear me," signifies that first state, described before; "the field give I thee, and the cave that is therein I give it thee," signifies preparation by themselves as to the things that are of the church and of faith; "in the eyes of the sons of my people give I it thee," signifies according to the understanding of all; "bury thy dead," signifies that they may come forth from night and be raised up.2945.
Nay, my lord, hear me. That this signifies that first state, described above (n. 2935, 2936), namely, that they were in obscurity of faith, is evident from the refusal, in that they were not willing to listen to Abraham, that he should give silver in full (verse 9, which means in the internal sense that they should be redeemed by the Lord), but desired to prepare themselves as to the things of the church and of faith, that is, to reform themselves. These words, "Nay, my lord, hear me," involve their state; that is, the state of their thought about redemption and reformation; for a proposal immediately follows.2946.
The field give I thee, and the cave that is therein I give it thee. That this signifies preparation by themselves as to the things that are of the church and of faith, is evident from the signification of "field," as being the church (see n. 368, 2936); from the signification of the "cave" therein, that is, in the field, as being obscurity of faith (see above, n. 2935); and from the signification of "giving the field" and "giving the cave," or what is the same, not receiving silver from Abraham, as being not to desire to be redeemed by the Lord, but by themselves, and thus to desire to prepare themselves as to these things. Such is the first state of all who are being reformed and made spiritual, namely, that they do not believe that they are reformed by the Lord but by themselves, that is, they believe all of the will of good and of the thought of truth to be from themselves; they are also left in this state by the Lord, since in no other way can they be reformed. For if before they have been regenerated it should be said to them that they cannot do anything of good from themselves, or think anything of truth from themselves, they would then either fall into the error of thinking that they must wait for influx into the will and influx into the thought, and if this does not take place must attempt nothing; or into the error of thinking that if good and truth were from any other source than themselves, nothing would be imputed to them for righteousness; or into the idea that so they would be as it were machines, and not their own masters, or in control of themselves; or into some other error. It is therefore permitted them at that time to think that good and truth are from themselves.  But after they are regenerate, then by degrees the knowledge is insinuated into them that the case is otherwise, and that all good and truth are solely from the Lord; and still further, when they are becoming more perfected, that whatever does not come from the Lord is evil and false. To the regenerate, if not in the life of the body still in the other life, it is given not only to know this, but also to perceive it; for all the angels are in the perception that it is so. (See what was said above on these subjects, namely, that all good and truth are from the Lord, n. 1614, 2016; that all intelligence and wisdom are from the Lord, n. 109, 112, 121, 124; that man of himself can do nothing of good and think nothing of truth, n. 874-876; that nevertheless everyone ought to do good as if from what is his own, and not hang down his hands, n. 1712; and that if a man compels himself to resist evil and to do good, as from himself, he receives from the Lord a heavenly Own, n. 1937, 1947.)2947.
To the eyes of the sons of my people give I it thee. That this signifies as to the understanding of all, is evident from the signification of the "eyes," as being the understanding (see n. 2701); and from the signification of "sons of the people," as being all; "sons of the people" are those who for the first time are initiated into truths, for "people" are those who are in truths (n. 1259, 1260); therefore it is not said "to the eyes of my people," but "to the eyes of the sons of my people."2948.
Bury thy dead. That this signifies that they may come forth from night and be raised up, is evident from the signification of being "buried," as being to rise again, or what is the same, to be raised up; and from the signification of "dead," as being night as to the goods and truths of faith (see above, n. 2917, 2923, 2925, 2931, where are the same words).2949.
Verses 12, 13. And Abraham bowed himself before the people of the land. And he spoke unto Ephron in the ears of the people of the land, saying, But if thou wilt, I pray thee, hear me; I will give the silver of the field; take it of me, and I will bury my dead there. "Abraham bowed himself before the people of the land," signifies the Lord's joy on account of the good will of those who were of the new spiritual church; "and he spoke unto Ephron" signifies influx with those who were able to receive; "in the ears of the people of the land," signifies even unto obedience as to the truths of the church; "but if thou wilt, I pray thee, hear me," signifies more interior influx; "I will give the silver of the field; take it of me," signifies redemption as to the truths of the church which are from the Lord; "and I will bury my dead," signifies that thus they would come forth from night and be vivified.2950.
Abraham bowed himself before the people of the land. That this signifies the Lord's joy on account of the good will of those who were of the new spiritual church, is evident from the signification of "bowing himself," here being to rejoice (as also above, n. 2927), from the representation of Abraham, as being the Lord (concerning which quite often above); and from the signification of the "people of the land," as being those who are of the spiritual church, concerning which see above (n. 2928), where the same words occur; but it is there said that "he bowed himself to the people of the land, to the sons of Heth" (verse 7). The reason why the sons of Heth also are mentioned there, is that there those of the church are signified who are beginning to be initiated, who are also signified by the "sons of the people" (see n. 2947); but here those are meant who are progressing, and therefore it is simply said the "people of the land," without the addition of the "sons of Heth;" and in the former passage there is signified joy on account of their kind reception, but here because of their good will. Reception comes first, because it is of the understanding; good will comes afterwards, because it is of the will (see n. 2954).