Arcana Coelestia, by Emanuel Swedenborg, [1749-56], tr. by John F. Potts [1905-10], at sacred-texts.com
Shall I and thy mother and thy brethren indeed come to bow down ourselves to thee to the earth? That this signifies will the church adore, is evident from the signification of "coming to bow down," as being to be about to adore (see n. 4689, 4698); and from the signification of "father" (who here is "I"), and "mother" and "brethren," as being the church, here the Jewish Church, as just shown.4702.
And his brethren envied him. That this signifies their 4702-1 aversion is evident from the signification of "envying," as also being aversion, like "to hate," and "not to speak to him for peace," as above (n. 4681); for in the original the word "envying" signifies also being jealous and quarreling; and as jealousy and quarreling are the effects of hatred, aversion also is signified by the same word.4703.
But his father kept the word. That this signifies that truth remained in their religiosity, is evident from the signification here of "father" as being the Jewish religion derived from the ancient (of which above, n. 4700); and from the signification of "keeping," as being to preserve inwardly, thus to remain; and from the signification of "word," as being truth (of which above, n. 4692). What is further meant by truth remaining in their religiosity may be seen above (n. 4700).4704.
Verses 12-17. And his brethren went to feed the flock of their father in Shechem. And Israel said unto Joseph, Do not thy brethren feed the flock in Shechem? Come, and I will send thee unto them. And he said to him, Behold me! And he said to him, Go I pray see the peace of thy brethren, and the peace of the flock, and bring me word again. And he sent him out of the valley of Hebron, and he came to Shechem. And a man found him, and behold he was wandering in the field; and the man asked him, saying, What seekest thou? And he said, I seek my brethren, tell me I pray where they are feeding the flock. And the man said, They are departed hence, for I heard them say, Let us go to Dothan. And Joseph went after his brethren, and found them in Dothan. "And his brethren went to feed the flock," signifies those who teach from faith; "of their father," signifies of the Ancient and of the Primitive Church; "in Shechem," signifies the first rudiments; "and Israel said unto Joseph," signifies perception from the Divine spiritual; "Do not thy brethren feed the flock in Shechem?" signifies that they are teaching; "come, and I will send thee unto them" signifies that it should teach Divine spiritual goods; "and he said to him, Behold me," signifies affirmation; "and he said to him, Go I pray see the peace of thy brethren," signifies every coming of the Lord, and perception how it was with those who taught; "and the peace of the flock," signifies how it was with those who were learning, or the church; "and bring me word again," signifies knowledge; "and he sent him out of the valley of Hebron," signifies from the natural and sensuous Divine; "and he came to Shechem," signifies the knowledge of general doctrinals; "and a man found him, and behold he was wandering in the field," signifies that they were fallen away from the general truth of the church; "and the man asked him, saying, What seekest thou?" signifies foresight; "and he said, I seek my brethren, tell me I pray where they are feeding the flock," signifies the knowledge of how the case was, and in what state they were; "and the man said, They are departed hence, for I heard them say, Let us go to Dothan," signifies that they betook themselves from generals to special things of doctrine; "and Joseph went after his brethren, and found them in Dothan," signifies that they were in the special things of false principles.4705.
And his brethren went to feed the flock. That this signifies those who teach from faith, is evident from the signification of Joseph's "brethren," as being those in the church who are of faith (of whom above, n. 4665, 4671, 4679, 4690); and from the signification of "feeding the flock," as being to teach (n. 343, 3767, 3768, 3772, 3783).4706.
Of their father. That this signifies of the Ancient and of the Primitive Church, is evident from the signification here of "father," or Jacob, as being the Ancient Church (of which above, n. 4680); that the Primitive Christian Church is likewise signified; may also be seen above (n. 4690). By the Primitive Church is meant the Christian Church in its beginning. In general four churches distinct from one another are treated of in the Word. There is the church which existed before the flood and was named Man; this is called the Most Ancient Church. Next is the one that existed after the flood, which is called the Ancient Church. Then followed that with the posterity of Jacob, which was not a church, but the representative of a church; which representative is also called a religiosity. And there is the one that was set up after the Lord's coming, which is called the Christian Church. It is this in its beginning that is called the Primitive Church.4707.
In Shechem. That this signifies the first rudiments, is evident from the signification of "Shechem," as being truth derived from the ancient Divine stock (n. 4399, 4454), and as being doctrine (n. 4472, 4473), here the first rudiments of doctrine concerning faith; for the predication of a name is according to the subject in its series. The first rudiments are also the generals of doctrinals; the generals being what are received first, and the specific things then following.4708.
And Israel said unto Joseph. That this signifies perception from the Divine spiritual, is evident from the signification of "saying" in the historicals of the Word as being perception (n. 1791, 1815, 1819, 1822, 1898, 1919, 2080, 2619, 2862, 3395, 3509); and from the representation of Joseph as being the Divine spiritual (n. 4669).4709.
Do not thy brethren feed the flock in Shechem? That this signifies that they are teaching, is evident from the signification of "feeding the flock" as being to teach (of which just above, n. 4705); and from the signification of "Shechem" as being the first rudiments of doctrine concerning faith (n. 4707).4710.
Come, and I will send thee unto them. That this signifies that it should teach Divine spiritual goods, is evident from the representation of Joseph as being the Lord's Divine spiritual (n. 4669, 4708). When this is said to be "sent," it denotes to teach Divine spiritual goods; for in the internal sense "to be sent" is to go forth and to proceed (n. 2397), and also at the same time to teach; here therefore it is to teach the Divine spiritual goods which proceed from the Lord's Divine spiritual. Divine spiritual goods are those which are of love and charity; but Divine spiritual truths are those which are of the faith thence. One who teaches the former, teaches also the latter; for the latter are from the former and concerning them. That in the internal sense "to be sent" is to proceed and to teach, is evident from many passages in the Word, as where it is often said of the Lord that He was "sent" by the Father, whereby is signified that He proceeded from Him, that is, from the Divine good; and also that the Lord "sends" the Comforter, or the Spirit of Truth, whereby is signified that holy truth proceeds from Him. The prophets also were "sent," by which is signified that they taught what proceeds from the Lord. Everyone may confirm these things from the Word, where they often occur.4711.
And he said to him, Behold me! That this signifies affirmation, is evident without explication.4712.
And he said to him, Go I pray see the peace of thy brethren. That this signifies every coming of the Lord, and perception how it was with those who taught, is evident from the signification of "saying," as being perception (of which just above, n. 4708); and from the signification of "peace," as being safety (n. 4681), thus how it was with them; and from the representation of brethren, as here being those who teach from faith (n. 4705). From this it is plain that by these words is signified perception how it was with those who taught. That every coming of the Lord is also signified, is because by Joseph is represented the Lord as to the Divine spiritual (n. 4669, 4708, 4710); and therefore when it is said that Joseph should go and see the peace of his brethren, the coming of the Lord is signified. By every coming is meant whenever truth from the Word flows into the thought.4713.
And the peace of the flock. That this signifies how it was with those who were learning, or the church, is evident from the signification of "peace" as being how it was with them (of which just above, n. 4712); and from the signification of a "flock" as being those who are learning. For a "shepherd," or one who feeds the flock, denotes one who teaches the good of charity and leads to it; and the "flock" denotes one who learns and is led (n. 343); thus also the church.4714.
And bring me word again. That this signifies knowledge, is evident from the signification of "bringing word again," as being to report how matters were, thus knowledge.4715.
And he sent him out of the valley of Hebron. That this signifies from the natural and sensuous Divine, is evident from the signification of "to be sent," as being to proceed and to teach (see n. 4710); and from the signification of a "valley" as being those things which are below (n. 1723, 3417); and from the signification of "Hebron" as being the Lord's church as to good (n. 2909). Thus by these words is signified that it taught the lower things of the church, and this because they did not comprehend higher things. For he who teaches faith, and not charity, is unable to notice the higher or interior things of the church; because he has nothing to guide him, and to dictate whether this or that is of faith, or is true. But if he teaches charity, he then has good, and this is to him a dictate and guides him; for all truth is from good and treats of good, or what is the same, everything of faith is from charity and treats of charity. Everyone, from mere natural light, can know that everything of doctrine has regard to life.  That by these words is signified from the natural and sensuous Divine, is the higher sense; for the lower things of the church are said to be from the Lord's natural and sensuous Divine; not that in the Lord these things are lower, because in the Lord and in His Divine Human all is infinite, inasmuch as He is Jehovah as to each essence (n. 2156, 2329, 2921, 3023), but because it is so in man. For those who are sensuous men apprehend sensuously the things which are in the Lord and from Him, and those who are natural apprehend them naturally. It is so said because of the quality of those who receive. But those who are celestial men, and thence truly rational, perceive interior things, and it is said of them that they are taught from the Lord's rational Divine. This as before said is the higher sense signified by the words.  That a "valley" is the lower things of the church, is evident from other passages in the Word, as in Isaiah: The prophecy of the valley of vision. What hast thou here, that thou art wholly gone up to the housetops? It is a day of tumult, and of treading down, and of perplexity, to the Lord Jehovih Zebaoth, in the valley of vision (Isa. 22:1, 5); the "valley of vision" denotes phantasies concerning spiritual things from sensuous, thus from lower things. Again: The choice of thy valleys were full of chariots, and the horsemen placing placed themselves at the gate (Isa. 22:7); the "choice of the valleys" denotes good and true things in the natural or external man. Again: The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of Jehovah, make level in the solitude a pathway for our God; every valley shall be exalted (Isa. 40:3-4); a "valley" denotes low things.  In Jeremiah: How sayest thou, I am not defiled, I have not gone after the Baalim? See thy way in the valley, acknowledge what thou hast done (Jer. 2:23); where "valley" denotes things of the memory and of the senses, which are lower things by which they perverted truths. Again: I am against thee O inhabitress of the valley, and rock of the plain, saith Jehovah; who say, Who will come down against us? (Jer. 21:13); the "inhabitress of the valley and rock of the plain" denote faith in which there is no charity. Again: The waster shall come upon every city, and no city shall escape; but the valley shall perish, and the plain shall be destroyed (Jer. 48:8); with a similar meaning. Again: Thou shalt not glory in the valleys; thy valley hath flowed away, O perverse daughter (Jer. 49:4); "valley" denotes external things in worship, which are also the lowest.  In Ezekiel: I will give to Gog a place for burial in Israel, the valley of them that pass through, and there shall they bury Gog and all his multitude; whence they shall call it, The valley of the multitude of Gog (Ezek. 39:11, 15); "Gog" denotes those who are in external worship without internal (n. 1151), whence his burial place is called "the valley of them that pass through," and "the valley of the multitude of Gog." In David: Yea, when I walk through the valley of shadow I will fear no evil (Ps. 23:4); where the "valley of shadow" denotes lower things, which are relatively in shade.  As valleys were between mountains and hills, and below them, therefore by "valleys" are signified the lower or exterior things of the church, because by hills and mountains are signified its higher or interior things, by "hills" things which are of charity, and by "mountains" those which are of love to the Lord (n. 795, 1430, 2722, 4210); and as by the land of Canaan is signified the Lord's kingdom and His church, therefore it is called "a land of mountains and valleys, that drinketh water of the rain of heaven" (Deut. 11:11). That Joseph is here said to have been sent out of the valley of Hebron is because the mission was to those who taught concerning faith (see n. 4705); for those who are in faith, and not in charity, are in lower things; because with them faith is only in the memory and thence in the mouth, but not in the heart and thence in the work.4716.
And he came to Shechem. That this signifies knowledge of general doctrinals, is evident from the signification of "Shechem," as being the first rudiments, or what is the same thing, the generals of doctrinals (n. 4707).4717.
And a man found him, and behold he was wandering in the field. That this signifies that they were fallen away from the general truth of the church, is evident from the signification of "wandering in the field," as being to fall away from the general truth of the church; for a "field" is the church as to good (n. 2971, 3196, 3766), and a "man of the field" is the good of life from doctrinals (n. 3310). It is said a "man," because by a "man" [vir] is signified the truth of the church (n. 3134). Those are said to fall away from the general truth of the church who acknowledge the Lord, but not His Human as Divine; and also those who acknowledge faith as essential, but not charity. Each is a general truth of the church, and when a man recedes from it he falls away from general truth; and whoever does this, soon falls away from specific truths (of which in what follows); just as when anyone starts with a false principle and from it deduces consequences, these also become false, because the principle rules in the consequents, and by these the false principle is also strengthened.4718.
And the man asked him, saying, What seekest thou? That this signifies foresight, may be seen from the series, for the series involves foresight.4719.
And he said, I seek my brethren; tell me I pray where they are feeding the flock? That this signifies knowledge of how the case was, and what state they were in; proximately, according to the words, how it was with those who taught from faith, and to learn their state, is evident; for by the "brethren" are signified those who teach from faith (see n. 4712); how it was with them is signified by "seeking them," or "seeing their peace" (n. 4712, 4713); by "where" is signified state, for in the internal sense everything relating to place denotes state (n. 2625, 2837, 3356, 3387, 4321); and by "those who feed" are signified those who teach (n. 343, 3767, 3768, 3772, 3783).4720.
And the man said, They are departed hence, for I heard them say, Let us go to Dothan. That this signifies that they betook themselves from generals to special things of doctrine, is evident from the signification of "departing," as being to betake themselves; and from the signification of "from Shechem," which is the place they departed from, as being from the generals of doctrine (n. 4707, 4716); and from the signification of "Dothan," as being the special things of doctrine. That "Dothan" is the special things of doctrine cannot so well be confirmed from other passages in the Word, because it is mentioned in the second book of Kings only (2 Kings 6:13), where it is related that the king of Syria sent chariots and horsemen and a great army to Dothan to take Elisha, and that they were smitten with blindness and led by Elisha to Samaria.  As all the historicals of the Word are representative of the celestial and spiritual things of the Lord's kingdom, so also is this, and by the king of Syria are represented those who are in the knowledges of truth (n. 1232, 1234, 3249, 3664, 3680, 4112); here in the opposite sense those who are in the knowledges of what is not true; by Elisha is represented the Word of the Lord (n. 2762); by Dothan, doctrinals from the Word; by the chariots and horsemen and the great army which the king of Syria sent, are signified falsities of doctrine; by the mountain full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha, which his young man saw, are signified the good and true things of doctrine from the Word (n. 2762); by the blindness with which those were smitten who were sent thither by the king of Syria, are signified the falsities themselves (n. 2383); and by their being led by Elisha to Samaria, where their eyes were opened, is signified instruction by means of the Word. Such things are involved in this history, in which by Dothan, where Elisha was, are signified doctrinal things of good and truth from the Word. Its signification in the present verse is similar, the special things of doctrine being nothing else; but here the special things of false principles are signified, because the subject treated of is the church that begins from faith, which it thus separates from charity from the very beginning. All the doctrinals which are then formed savor of the general principle, thus of faith without charity; whence come the falsities which are the special things of the false principles.  Every church in its beginning knows only the generals of doctrine, for it is then in its simplicity, and as it were in its childhood; but in the course of time it adds particulars, which in part are confirmations of the generals, and in part additions (which, however, are not contrary to the generals), and also explanations to reconcile plain contradictions and to avoid violence to the dictates of common sense. All these things are nevertheless the special things of false principles; for all things of every doctrine which recognize the general principle as father, have relation to one another as in a kind of fellowship, and are conjoined as if by relationships of blood and of marriage. It is plain from this that when the general principle is false, all things savor of falsity.4721.
And Joseph went after his brethren, and found them in Dothan. That this signifies that they were in the special things of false principles, is evident from the representation of Joseph, as being the Lord as to Divine truth (see n. 4669); from the representation of his brethren, as being the church that turns away from charity to faith, and at last to faith separate (n. 4665, 4671, 4679, 4680, 4690); and from the signification of "Dothan," as being the special things of false principles (of which just above, n. 4720). From this it is plain that by these words is signified that it found them in the special things of false principles.  That it may be known what is meant by the special things of false principles, let us take for illustration some of the doctrinals of a church which acknowledges faith alone as a principle, as that man is justified by faith alone, that then all sins are wiped away from him, that he may be saved by faith alone even in the last hour of his life, that salvation is merely admission into heaven through grace, that children also are saved by faith, that the Gentiles because they have no faith are not saved; besides many others. These and the like are the special things belonging to the principle of faith alone. But if the church would acknowledge as its principle the life of faith, it would acknowledge charity toward the neighbor and love to the Lord, consequently the works of charity and of love, and then all these special things would fall to pieces; and instead of justification it would acknowledge regeneration, in regard to which the Lord says in John, "Except a man be born anew, he cannot see the kingdom of God" (John 3:3); and it would acknowledge that regeneration is effected by a life of faith, but not by faith separate. Neither would it profess that all sins are then wiped away from man, but that it is of the Lord's mercy that he is withheld from them, and kept in good and thence in truth; thus that all good is from the Lord, and all evil from himself. Nor would the church profess that man may be saved by faith in the last hour of his life, but by the life of faith which abides with him. Neither would it profess that salvation is mere admission into heaven through grace, for heaven is denied by the Lord to no one; but it would acknowledge that if one's life is not such that he can be with angels, he flees from heaven of his own will (n. 4674). Nor would it profess that children are saved by faith, but that in the other life they are instructed in the goods of charity and the truths of faith by the Lord, and so are received into heaven (n. 2289-2308). Nor would it profess that because the Gentiles have no faith they are not saved; but that their life remains with them as with others, and that those who have lived in mutual charity are instructed in the goods of faith, and are alike received into heaven, as is both wished and believed by those who are in the good of life (n. 2589-2604); and so in many other particulars.  The church which acknowledges faith alone as a principle cannot know what charity is, nor even what the neighbor is, thus not what heaven is; and it will wonder that anyone should ever say that the happiness of the life after death and the joy in heaven is the Divine which flows into willing well and doing well to others, and that the happiness and the blessedness therefrom transcend all perception, and that the reception of this influx can never be given to anyone who has not lived a life of faith, that is, who has not been in the good of charity. That a life of faith saves, the Lord teaches plainly in Matthew 25, verses 31 to the end, and in many other places; and hence also the creed which is called the creed of Athanasius teaches at the end, "Everyone shall render an account of his works; he who has done well shall enter into life eternal, but he who has done ill into eternal fire."4722.
Verses 18-22. And they saw him afar off, and before he came near unto them, they conspired against him to cause him to die. And they said a man to his brother, Behold this lord of dreams cometh. Come now therefore and let us slay him, and cast him into one of the pits, and we will say, An evil wild beast hath devoured him; and we shall see what his dreams will be. And Reuben heard, and rescued him out of their hand, and said, Let us not smite him, the soul. And Reuben said unto them, Shed no blood; cast him into this pit that is in the wilderness, but lay no hand upon him; that he might rescue him out of their hand, to bring him back to his father. "And they saw him afar off," signifies perception of the Lord's Divine Human remotely; "and before he came near unto them, they conspired against him to cause him to die," signifies that they wished to extinguish the Divine spiritual which is from the Lord's Divine Human; "and they said a man to his brother," signifies their mutual thoughts; "behold, this lord of dreams cometh," signifies that those things were empty; "come now therefore and let us slay him," signifies the extinction of the essential of doctrine concerning the Lord's Divine Human; "and cast him into one of the pits," signifies among falsities; "and we will say an evil wild beast hath devoured him," signifies a lie from a life of cupidities; "and we shall see what will become of his dreams," signifies that the preachings concerning it would thus be false and would appear so; "and Reuben heard," signifies confession of the faith of the church in general; "and rescued him out of their hand," signifies liberation; "and said let us not smite him, the soul," signifies that it must not be extinguished, because it is the life of religion; "and Reuben said unto them," signifies exhortation; "shed no blood," signifies that they should not do violence to what is holy; "cast him into this pit that is in the wilderness," signifies that they should conceal it meanwhile among their falsities; "but lay no hand upon him," signifies that they should not do violence to it; "that he might rescue him out of their hand, to bring him back to his father," signifies that it might claim it for the church.4723.
And they saw him afar off. That this signifies perception of the Lord's Divine Human remotely, is evident from the signification of "seeing," as being perception (see n. 2150, 3764); from the signification of "afar off," as being remotely; and from the representation of Joseph, who it was that they saw afar off, as being the Lord as to Divine truth (n. 4669). That it is the Lord's Divine Human which is here meant by "Joseph," is because this is the supreme of Divine truth. There are two essentials which constitute the church, and hence two principal things of doctrine - one, that the Lord's Human is Divine; the other, that love to the Lord and charity toward the neighbor make the church, and not faith separate from love and charity. Because these are the primary things of Divine truth, these also are represented by Joseph; for the same person that represents Divine truth in general, represents also the specific things of Divine truth; but what is specifically represented, is evident from the series.4724.
And before he came near into them, they conspired against him to cause him to die. That this signifies that they wished to extinguish the Divine spiritual which is from the Lord's Divine Human, is evident from the signification of "conspiring," as being to will from a depraved mind, since whatever men will from a depraved mind, they conspire to accomplish; and from the signification of "slaying," as being to extinguish; and from the representation of Joseph, as being the Divine spiritual or Divine truth, as repeatedly shown above. Because Divine truth proceeds from the Lord's Divine Human, it is therefore said,. the Divine spiritual which is from the Lord's Divine Human.  The case herein is this: All the Divine truth in the whole heaven proceeds from no other source than the Lord's Divine Human. That which is from the Divine Itself cannot flow in immediately with any angel, because it is infinite; but only mediately through the Lord's Divine Human, as is also meant by these words of the Lord, "No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He hath set Him forth" (John 1:18). For this reason also the Lord as to the Divine Human is called Mediator.  This also was from eternity, for the Divine being, without flowing through heaven and becoming thence the Divine coming-forth, could not be communicated to any angel, still less to any spirit, and less still to any man. That the Lord as to the Divine Itself is the Divine being, and as to the Divine Human is the Divine coming-forth, may be seen above (n. 4687). Neither could the Lord's Human itself have received any influx from the Divine being, unless in Him the Human had been made Divine; for that which receives the Divine being must also be Divine. From these few things it may be seen that Divine truth does not proceed immediately from the Divine Itself, but from the Lord's Divine Human.  This also do they extinguish in themselves who battle for faith alone and do not live a life of faith; for they believe that the Lord's Human is purely human, not unlike the human of another man; and hence many of them deny the Divine of the Lord, however they may profess Him with the lips. But those who live a life of faith, on bended knees and with humble hearts adore the Lord as God the Savior, and do not then at all think from doctrine of the distinction between the Divine and the human nature; and they do the same in the Holy Supper. Hence it is plain that with them the Lord's Divine Human is in their hearts.4725.
And they said a man to his brother. That this signifies their mutual thoughts, is evident from the signification of "saying," as being to perceive and to think (n. 3395); and from the signification of "a man to his brother," as being mutually. It was a customary form of speech with the ancients to say "a man to his brother" when what is mutual was signified; for the reason that a "man" signified truth (n. 3134, 3459), and a "brother" good (n. 4121), between which there intervenes a most intimate mutual relation; for the conjunction of truth with good and of good with truth takes place mutually and reciprocally (n. 2731).4726.
Behold this lord of dreams cometh. That this signifies that those things were empty, is evident from the signification of "dreams," as being preachings (n. 4682), here preachings of Divine truth, because it is said of Joseph. But because Divine truth as to its essentials is rejected by those who are in faith alone (as was shown in regard to the Lord's Divine Human and charity), therefore by "dreams" are here signified empty things; for to such persons falsities appear as truths, and truths as falsities, or if not as falsities, yet as empty things; and the "lord of dreams" is the preacher of these. That Divine truths appear to such persons as empty, is evident from many things-as for example, it is a Divine truth that the Word is holy and Divinely inspired as to every jot, and that its holiness and Divine inspiration are in consequence of everything in it being representative and significative of heavenly and spiritual things of the Lord's kingdom. But when the Word is open to the internal sense, and it is taught what its particulars represent and signify, then such as are in faith alone reject these things as empty, saying that they are of no use; although these heavenly and spiritual things are what would affect the internal man with greater delight than worldly things affect the external man; and so in many other instances.4727.
Come now therefore and let us slay him. That this signifies the extinction of the essential of doctrine concerning the Lord's Divine Human, is evident from the signification of "slaying," as being to extinguish; and from the representation of Joseph, whom they wished to kill, as being the Divine truth of the Lord, and specifically the doctrine concerning His Divine Human, which has been shown above to be an essential of doctrine (n. 4723). That the church in acknowledging faith alone has extinguished this essential truth, is known; for which of them believes the Lord's Human to be Divine? Do they not turn away at the very proposition? When yet in the ancient churches it was believed that the Lord who was to come into the world was a Divine Man, and also when seen by them He was called Jehovah, as is plain from many passages in the Word, but for the present only this from Isaiah will be adduced: The voice of one crying the wilderness, Prepare ye the Way of Jehovah, make level in the solitude a pathway for our God (Isa. 40:3). That these words were spoken of the Lord, and that by John the Baptist the way was prepared and a pathway made level for Him, is very evident from the evangelists (Matt. 3:3; Mark 1:3; Luke 3:4; John 1:23); and further from the Lord's own words, that He was one with the Father, and that the Father was in Him, and He in the Father; also that to Him was given all power in heaven and on earth, and that judgment belonged to Him. One who knows even a little about power in heaven and on earth, and about judgment, can know that they would be nothing unless He were Divine as to the Human also.  Those who are in faith alone cannot know what makes man new or sanctifies him, still less what made the Lord's Human Divine; for they know nothing of love and charity, and it is love to the Lord and charity toward the neighbor that make man new and sanctify him, while the Divine love itself made the Lord Divine. For love is the very being of man, and hence is his living; and it forms man according to an image of itself, just as the soul of man, which is his interior essence, as it were creates or fashions the body into an image, of itself; and indeed in such a way that by means of the body it acts and has sensation just as it wills and thinks. Thus the body is as the effect, and the soul as the cause in which is the end; consequently the soul is the all in the body, as the cause of the end is the all in the effect. The Human of Him whose soul was Jehovah Himself (as was the case with the Lord, for He was conceived of Jehovah) could not when glorified be other than Divine. From this it is plain how greatly those err who make the Lord's Human, after it was glorified, to be like the human of a man, when yet it is Divine. From His Divine Human proceeds all the wisdom, all the intelligence, and also all the light, in heaven. Whatever proceeds from Him is holy; and the holy that is not from the Divine is not holy.4728.
And cast him into one of the pits. That this signifies among falsities, is evident from the signification of "pits," as being falsities. That "pits" are falsities, is because men who have been in principles of falsity are after death kept awhile under the lower earth, until falsities have been removed from them, and as it were rejected to the sides. These places are called "pits," and those who go into them are such as must be in vastation (n. 1106-1113, 2699, 2701, 2704). It is for this reason that by "pits" in the abstract sense, are signified falsities. The lower earth is next under the feet and the region round about for a short distance. Here are most persons after death, before they are taken up into heaven. This earth is also frequently mentioned in the Word. Beneath it are the places of vastation, which are called "pits," and below them and round about for a considerable extent, are hells.  From this it is in some measure plain what is meant by "hell," what by the "lower earth," and what by a "pit," when mentioned in the Word, as in Isaiah: Thou hast been brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit. Thou hast been cast forth out of thy grave like an abominable shoot, the raiment of those that are slain, thrust through with the sword, that go down to the stones of the pit (Isa. 14:15, 19); speaking of the king of Babylon, by whom is represented the profanation of truth; for a "king" is truth (n. 1672, 2015, 2069, 3009, 4581), and "Babylon" profanation (n. 1182, 1326). "Hell" is where the damned are, and their damnation is compared to an abominable shoot, and to the raiment of those that are slain and thrust through with the sword, that go down to the stones of the pit. The "raiment of those that are slain" is truth profaned; "those thrust through with the sword" are they in whom truth has been extinguished; the "pit" is falsity which must be vastated; "stones" are the borders, whence also they are called the "sides," for round about the pits are hells. (That "raiment" is truth, see above, n. 2576; that the "raiment of those that are slain" is truth profaned, for the "blood" by which it is stained is what is profane, n. 1003; and that "those thrust through with a sword" are they in whom truth has been extinguished, n. 4503). From this it is also plain that without the internal sense it could not possibly be known what is here meant.  So too in Ezekiel: When I shall bring thee down with them that descend into the pit, to the people of an age, and shall make thee to dwell in the earth of the lower regions, in desolations from an age, that thou dwell not with them that go down into the pit; then will I set adornment in the land of the living (Ezek. 26:20); "they that descend into the pit" denote those who are sent into vastation; "not to dwell with them that go down into the pit" means to be delivered from falsities.  Again: That none of all the trees of the waters exalt themselves for their stature, neither send their branch among the tangled boughs, nor stand over them for their height, all that drink water; they shall all be delivered unto death, to the lower earth in the midst of the sons of men, to them that go down into the pit. I will make the nations to shake at the sound of his ruin, when I make him go down into hell with them that go down into the pit; and all the trees of Eden, the choice and chief of Lebanon, all that drink waters, shall be comforted in the lower earth (Ezek. 31:14, 16); this is said of Egypt, by which is signified the knowledge that of itself enters into the mysteries of faith, that is, those who so enter (n. 1164, 1165, 1186). From what has been said above it is clear what is signified by "hell," by the "pit," and by the "lower earth," which are here mentioned by the prophet; nor does it appear except from the internal sense what is signified by the "trees of the waters," the "trees of Eden," the "branch sent among the tangled boughs," the "choice and chief of Lebanon," and "all that drink waters."  Again: Son of man, wail for the multitude of Egypt, and cause her to go down, even her, and the daughters of the august nations, unto the earth of the lower regions, with them that go down into the pit. Asshur is there, whose graves are set in the sides of the pit, all slain by the sword (Ezek. 32:18, 22-23); the signification of which may be seen from what has been explained above. In David: O Jehovah, Thou hast brought up my soul from hell; Thou hast kept me alive, from among them that go down into the pit (Ps. 30:3). Again: I am accounted with them that go down into the pit; I am accounted as a man that hath no strength. Thou hast set me in a pit of the lower regions, in darkness, in the depths (Ps. 88:4, 6). In Jonah: I went down to the cuttings off of the mountains; the bars of the earth were upon me forever; yet hast Thou brought up my life from the pit (Jonah 2:6); where the subject treated of is the Lord's temptations, and deliverance from them. The "cuttings off of the mountains" are where the most damned are, the dark clouds which appear about them being the "mountains."  That a "pit" is the vastation of falsity, and in the abstract sense falsity, is still more evident in Isaiah: They shall be gathered with a gathering as the bound to the pit, and shall be shut up in the prison; yet after a multitude of days shall they be visited (Isa. 24:22). Again: Where is the anger of him that causeth straitness? He that leadeth forth shall hasten to open; and he shall not die at the pit, neither shall bread fail (Isa. 51:13-14). In Ezekiel: Behold I bring strangers upon thee, the violent of the nations, who shall draw their swords upon the beauty of thy wisdom, and they shall profane thy brightness. They shall bring thee down into the pit, and thou shalt die the deaths of them that are pierced in the heart of the seas (Ezek. 28:7-8); speaking of the prince of Tyre, by whom are signified those who are in principles of falsity.  In Zechariah: Exult greatly, O daughter of Zion; sound, O daughter of Jerusalem; behold thy King cometh unto thee; He is just, wretched, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of she-asses. By the blood of thy covenant I will send forth thy bound out of the pit wherein is no water (Zech. 9:9, 11); where the "pit wherein is no water" denotes falsity in which there is nothing true; as also in what follows it is said that they cast Joseph into the pit, and the pit was empty, there was no water in it (Gen. 37:24). In David: Unto thee O Jehovah will I cry, my Rock be not Thou silent unto me, lest if Thou be silent unto me I seem like them that go down into the pit (Ps. 28:1). Again: Jehovah brought me up also out of a pit of vastation, out of the miry clay; and He set my feet upon a rock (Ps. 40:2). Let not the billow of waters overwhelm me, neither let the deep swallow me up, and let not the pit shut her mouth upon me (Ps. 69:15).  Again: He sent His word, and healed them, and rescued them from their pits (Ps. 107:20); "from their pits" denoting from falsities. Again: Make haste, answer me, O Jehovah; my spirit is consumed, hide not Thy faces from me, lest I become like them that go down into the pit (Ps. 143:7). As a "pit" signifies falsity, and the "blind" signify those who are in falsities (n. 2383), the Lord therefore says, Let them alone; they are blind leaders of the blind, for if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into a pit (Matt. 15:14; Luke 6:39). Something similar to what was represented by Joseph was also represented by Jeremiah the prophet, concerning which he says: They took Jeremiah, and cast him into the pit that was in the court of the guard; and they let down Jeremiah with cords, into the pit where was no water (Jer. 38:6); that is, they rejected Divine truths among falsities in which was nothing of truth.4729.
And we will say, An evil wild beast hath devoured him. That this signifies a lie from a life of cupidities, is evident from the signification of a "wild beast," as being affection and cupidity (n. 45, 46); for a "wild beast" in the genuine sense denotes what is living (n. 774, 841, 908); hence by an "evil wild beast" is here signified a life of cupidities; that it is a lie is plain. This has reference to what goes before-that their rejecting that Divine truth among falsities, was a lie from a life of cupidities. For there are three sources of falsity, one the doctrine of the church, another the fallacy of the senses, and the third a life of cupidities. That which is from the doctrine of the church takes hold of man's intellectual part only; for he is persuaded from infancy that it is so, and confirmatory things afterwards strengthen it. But that which is from the fallacy of the senses does not so much affect the intellectual part; for those who are in falsity from the fallacy of the senses have but little insight from the understanding, because they think from lower and sensuous things. But the falsity which is from a life of cupidities springs from the will itself, or what is the same, from the heart; for what man wills from the heart, he desires. This falsity is the worst of all, because it inheres, and is not eradicated except by new life from the Lord.  There are, as is known, two interior faculties in man, the understanding and the will. What the understanding absorbs and becomes imbued with, does not for this reason pass into the will; but what the will absorbs does pass into the understanding. For whatever a man wills, he thinks; and therefore when he wills evil from cupidity, he thinks it and confirms it. The confirmations of evil by the thought are what are called falsities from a life of cupidities. These falsities appear to him as truths; and when he has confirmed them in himself, truths appear to him as falsities; for he has then shut out the influx of light through heaven from the Lord. But if he has not confirmed these falsities in himself, then the truths with which his understanding had previously been imbued, resist and do not permit them to be confirmed.4730.
And we shall see what his dreams will be. That this signifies that the preachings concerning it would thus be false and would appear so, is evident from the signification of "dreams," as being preachings (n. 4682); and as in their eyes these appeared as falsities (n. 4726, 4729), therefore by "dreams" here are signified preachings concerning Divine truth, especially that the Lord's Human is Divine, which preachings in their opinion were false. That they also appeared to them as falsities, is signified by their saying, "We shall see what his dreams will be." That the preachings concerning the Lord's Divine Human appeared and still appear as falsities to those who are in faith alone, may be seen from what was said just above (n. 4729e); for what is confirmed from a life of cupidities has no other appearance.  That falsities are confirmed from a life of cupidities is also from this cause, that they do not know what heaven is, nor hell, neither what love toward the neighbor is, nor the love of self and the world. If they knew these things, and even if they were but willing to know them, they would think very differently. Who at this day knows otherwise than that love toward the neighbor is to give what one has to the poor, and to assist every man with one's wealth, and to benefit him in every way, without distinction as to whether he is good or evil? And because by these means one would be stripped of his wealth, and would himself become poor and wretched, he therefore rejects the doctrine of charity, and embraces that of faith; and then he confirms himself against charity by many things, as by thinking that he was born in sins and hence can do no good of himself, and that if he does the works of charity or piety, he cannot but place merit in them. And when he thinks thus on the one hand, and from a life of cupidities on the other, he betakes himself to the side of those who say that faith alone saves. And when he is there, he confirms himself still more, until he believes that the works of charity are not necessary to salvation; and when these are excluded, he falls into this new notion-that because such is the nature of man, a means of salvation has been provided by the Lord, which is called faith; and at last into this, that he may be saved if even at the very hour of death he says with confidence or trust that God has mercy upon him through looking to the Son as having suffered for him, making nothing of what the Lord has said in John (1:12, 13), and many other places. It is for this reason that faith alone has been acknowledged in the churches as the essential; but that it has not been everywhere acknowledged in this manner, is because the parsons cannot gain anything by preaching faith alone, but only by the preaching of works.  But had these men known what charity toward the neighbor is, they would never have fallen into this falsity of doctrine. The fundamental of charity is to act rightly and justly in everything which belongs to one's duty or employment-as for example, if one who is a judge punishes an evil doer according to the laws, and does so from zeal, he is then in charity toward the neighbor; for he desires his amendment, thus his good, and also wills well to society and his country, that it receive no further injury from the evildoer; thus he can love him if he amends, as a father the son whom he chastises; and thus he loves societies and his country, which are to him the neighbor in general. It is similar in all other instances. But of the Lord's Divine Mercy this will be shown more fully elsewhere.4731.
And Reuben heard. That this signifies the confession of the faith of the church in general, is evident from the representation of Reuben, as being faith in the understanding or doctrine, which is the first thing of regeneration-the complex the truth of doctrine by which the good of life can be attained (n. 3861, 3866); and here therefore the confession of the faith of the church in general. That Reuben here interposes is because the church which begins from faith would cease to be a church unless this Divine truth remained in it - that the Lord's Human is Divine, for this is the supreme or inmost truth of the church. For this reason Reuben wished to rescue Joseph, by whom this truth is here represented, out of the hand of his brethren, to restore him to his father-by which is signified that it wished to claim this truth for the church. Moreover, when Reuben returned to the pit and saw that Joseph was not there, he rent his clothes and said to his brethren, "The child is not, and I, whither do I come?" (verses 29, 30) by which is signified that there was no longer any faith in the Lord, and thus no church.  This supreme or inmost truth, that the Lord's Human is Divine, is denied by those in the church who are in faith alone; and yet because they know from the Word that in the Lord there is the Divine, and do not apprehend how the Human can be Divine, they therefore attribute both to the Lord, making a distinction between His Divine nature and His Human nature. Those however who are in a life of faith, or in charity, adore the Lord as their God and Savior; and when in adoration, they think of the Lord's Divine without separating it from the Human, and thus at heart acknowledge all in the Lord to be Divine. But when they think from doctrine, because they likewise cannot comprehend how the Human can be Divine, they speak according to their doctrine.4732.
And rescued him out of their hand. That this signifies liberation, is evident without explication.4733.
And said, Let us not smite him, the soul. That this signifies that it must not be extinguished, because it is the life of religion, is evident from the signification of "smiting," as being to extinguish; and from the signification of "soul" as being life (n. 1000, 1005, 1436, 1742), here the life of religion. That acknowledgment and adoration of the Lord's Divine Human is the life of religion, is plain from what was said just above (n. 4731); and also from the fact that men are of such a nature as to desire to worship that of which they can have some perception and thought, and sensuous men even that which they can perceive by some sense, nor are they willing to worship unless the Divine is therein. This is common to the human race. For this reason Gentiles worship idols in which they believe there is the Divine, and others worship men after their death whom they believe to be either gods or saints. For nothing can be called forth in man unless there is something to affect his senses.  Those who say that they acknowledge a Supreme Being, of whom they have no idea of perception, for the most part acknowledge no God, but nature instead, because they comprehend this. Very many of the learned among Christians are such, and this also because they do not believe the Human of the Lord to be Divine. Lest therefore men who have removed themselves so far from the Divine, and have become so far corporeal, should worship wood and stones; and lest they should worship some man after his death, and thus under him some devil, and not God Himself, because they could not in any way perceive Him, and thus everything of the church should perish, and with the church the human race, the Divine Itself willed to assume the Human and to make it Divine. Let the learned take heed therefore, lest they think of the Lord's Human and do not at the same time believe it to be Divine, for in so doing they make for themselves a stumbling block, and at last believe nothing.4734.
And Reuben said unto them. This signifies exhortation, in the proximate sense confession of the faith of the church in general (which is "Reuben," n. 4731) exhorting or dictating that they should not do violence, as in what follows.4735.
Shed no blood. That this signifies that they should not do violence to what is holy is evident from the signification of "blood" as being what is holy-of which in what follows; hence "to shed blood" is to do violence to what is holy. All the holy in heaven proceeds from the Lord's Divine Human, and therefore all the holy in the church; wherefore that violence might not be done to it, the Holy Supper was instituted by the Lord, in which it is expressly said that the bread is His flesh, and the wine His blood, thus that it is his Divine Human from which the holy then comes. With the ancients, flesh and blood signified the human own, because the human consists of flesh and blood; thus the Lord said to Simon, "Blessed art thou, for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but My Father who is in the heavens" (Matt. 16:17). The flesh and the blood, therefore, signified by the bread and the wine in the Holy Supper, denote the Lord's Human Own. The Lord's Own Itself, which He acquired to Himself by His own power, is Divine. His Own from conception was what He had from Jehovah His Father, and was Jehovah Himself. Hence the Own which He acquired to Himself in the Human was Divine. This Divine Own in the Human is what is called His flesh and blood; "flesh" is His Divine good (n. 3813), and "blood" is the Divine truth of Divine good.  The Lord's Human, after it was glorified or made Divine, cannot be thought of as human, but as the Divine love in human form; and this so much the more than the angels, who, when they appear (as seen by me), appear as forms of love and charity under the human shape, and this from the Lord; for the Lord from Divine love made His Human Divine; just as man through heavenly love becomes an angel after death, so that he appears, as just said, as a form of love and charity under the human shape. It is plain from this that by the Lord's Divine Human, in the celestial sense is signified the Divine love itself, which is love toward the whole human race, in that it wills to save them and to make them blessed and happy to eternity, and to make its Divine their own so far as they can receive it. This love and the reciprocal love of man to the Lord, and also love toward the neighbor, are what are signified and represented in the Holy Supper-the Divine celestial love by the flesh or bread, and the Divine spiritual love by the blood or wine.  From these things it is now evident what is meant in John by eating the Lord's flesh and drinking His blood: I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eat of this bread he shall live forever; and the bread that I will give is My flesh. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink His blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth My flesh, and drinketh My blood, hath eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is meat indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. He that eateth My flesh and drinketh My blood abideth in Me, and I in him. This is the bread which came down from heaven (John 6:51-58). As "flesh and blood" signify as before said the Divine celestial and the Divine spiritual which are from the Lord's Divine Human, or what is the same, the Divine good and the Divine truth of his love, by "eating and drinking" is signified making them one's own; and this is effected by a life of love and charity, which is also a life of faith. (That "eating" is making good one's own, and "drinking" making truth one's own, may be seen above, n. 2187, 3069, 3168, 3513, 3596, 3734, 3832, 4017, 4018.)  As "blood" in the celestial sense signifies the Divine spiritual or the Divine truth proceeding from the Lord's Divine Human, it therefore signifies the holy proceeding; for the Divine truth proceeding from the Lord's Divine Human is the holy itself.  Holiness is nothing else, nor from any other source. That "blood" signifies this holy is evident from many passages in the Word, of which we may adduce the following: Son of man, thus saith the Lord Jehovih, Say to every bird of the heaven, to every wild beast of the field, Assemble yourselves and come; gather yourselves from every side upon My sacrifice that I do sacrifice for you, even a great sacrifice upon the mountains of Israel, that ye may eat flesh and drink blood. Ye shall eat the flesh of the mighty, and drink the blood of the princes of the earth, of rams, of lambs, and of goats, [of bullocks,] all of them fatlings of Bashan. And ye shall eat fat till ye be full, and drink blood till ye be drunken, of My sacrifice which I will sacrifice for you. And ye shall be sated at My table with horse and chariot, with the strong, and with every man of war. And I will set My glory among the nations (Ezek. 39:17-21). The subject here treated of is the calling together of all to the Lord's kingdom, and specifically the setting up again of the church among the Gentiles; and by their "eating flesh and drinking blood" is signified making Divine good and Divine truth their own, thus the holy which proceeds from the Lord's Divine Human. Who cannot see that by "flesh" is not meant flesh, nor by "blood" blood, where it is said that they should eat the flesh of the mighty and drink the blood of the princes of the earth, and that they should be sated with horse and chariot, with the strong, and with every man of war?  So likewise in Revelation: I saw an angel standing in the sun and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the birds that fly in mid-heaven, Come and gather yourselves unto the supper of the great God; that ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of the strong, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit thereon, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great (Rev. 19:17-18); who would ever understand these words unless he knew what is signified in the internal sense by "flesh," and what by "kings," "captains," "the strong" "horses," "those that sit thereon," and "free and bond?"  Further in Zechariah: He shall speak peace to the nations; and His dominion shall be from sea even to sea, and from the river even to the ends of the earth. As for thee also, through the blood of Thy covenant I will send forth thy bound out of the pit (Zech. 9:10, 11); where the Lord is spoken of; the "blood of Thy covenant" is the Divine truth proceeding from his Divine Human, and is the holy itself which, after He was glorified, went forth from Him. This holy is also what is called the Holy Spirit, as is evident in John: Jesus said, If any man thirst, let him come unto Me, and drink. Whosoever believeth in Me, as the Scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. But this spoke He of the Spirit, which they that believe on Him should receive for the Holy Spirit was not yet, because Jesus was not yet glorified (John 7:37-39). That the holy proceeding from the Lord is the "spirit," may be seen in John 6:63.  Moreover, that "blood" is the holy proceeding from the Lord's Divine Human, in David: Bring back their soul from deceit and violence; and precious shall their blood be in His eyes (Ps. 72:14); "precious blood" denotes the holy which they would receive. In Revelation: These are they who come out of great affliction, and they washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb (Rev. 7:14). And again: They overcame the dragon by the blood of the lamb, and by the Word of their testimony; and they loved not their soul even unto death (Rev. 12:11).  The church at this day does not know otherwise than that the "blood of the lamb" here signifies the Lord's passion, because it is believed that they are saved solely by the Lord having suffered, and that it was for this that He was sent into the world; but let this view of it be for the simple, who cannot comprehend interior arcana. The Lord's passion was the last of His temptation, by which He fully glorified His Human (Luke 24:26; John 12:23, 27, 28; 13:31, 32; 17:1, 4, 5); but the "blood of the lamb" is the same as the Divine truth, or the holy proceeding from the Lord's Divine Human; thus the same as the "blood of the covenant" spoken of just above, and of which it is also written in Moses:  Moses took the book of the covenant, and read in the ears of the people; and they said, All that Jehovah hath spoken will we do, and hear. Then Moses took the blood, and sprinkled it on the people, and said, Behold the blood of the covenant which Jehovah hath made with you upon all these words (Exod. 24:7-8); the "book of the covenant" was the Divine truth which they then had, which was confirmed by the blood testifying that it was from His Divine Human.  In the rituals of the Jewish Church blood had no other signification than the holy proceeding from the Lord's Divine Human, wherefore when they were sanctified, it was done by blood-as when Aaron and his sons were sanctified, blood was sprinkled upon the horns of the altar, the remainder at the bottom of the altar, also upon the tip of the right ear, the thumb of the right hand, and the great toe of the right foot, and upon his garments (Exod. 29:12, 16, 20; Lev. 8:15, 19, 23, 30). And when Aaron entered within the veil to the mercy-seat, blood was also to be sprinkled with the finger upon the mercy-seat eastward seven times (Lev. 16:12-15). So also in the rest of the sanctifications, and also in the expiations and cleansings (in regard to which see the following passages, Exod. 12:7, 13, 22; 30:10; Lev. 1:5, 11, 15; 3:2, 8, 13; 4:6, 7, 17, 18, 25, 30, 34; 5:9; 6:27, 28; 14:14-19, 25-30; 16:12-15, 18, 19; Deut. 12:27).  As by "blood" in the genuine sense is signified the holy, so in the opposite sense by "blood" and "bloods" are signified those things which offer violence to it, because by shedding innocent blood is signified doing violence to what is holy. For this reason wicked things of life and profane things of worship were called "blood." That "blood" and "bloods" have such a signification, is evident from the following passages. In Isaiah: When the Lord shall have washed the excrement of the daughters of Zion, and shall have washed away the bloods of Jerusalem from the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of expurgation (Isa. 4:4). The waters of Dimon are full of blood (Isa. 15:9). Again: Your hands are defiled with blood, and your fingers with iniquity. Their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed innocent blood; their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity (Isa. 59:3, 7). In Jeremiah: Also in thy skirts is found the blood of the souls of the innocent poor (Jer. 2:34).  Again: It is because of the sins of her prophets, and the iniquities of her priests, that have shed the blood of the just in the midst of Jerusalem. They have wandered blind in the streets, they are polluted with blood; those which they cannot [pollute] they touch with their garments (Lam. 4:13-14). In Ezekiel: I have passed by thee, and saw thee trodden down in thy bloods, and I said unto thee, Live in thy bloods, and I said unto thee, Live in thy bloods. I washed thee with waters, and washed away thy bloods from upon thee, and I anointed thee with oil (Ezek. 16:6, 9). Again: Thou son of man, Wilt thou debate with a city of bloods? Make known to her all her abominations. Thou art become guilty through thy blood that thou hast shed, and art defiled through thine idols which thou hast made. Behold the princes of Israel, everyone according to his arm, have been in thee and have shed blood; men of slander have been in thee to shed blood; and in thee they have eaten at the mountains (Ezek. 22:2-4, 6, 9). In Moses: If anyone shall sacrifice elsewhere than upon the altar at the tent, it shall be blood; and as if he had shed blood (Lev. 17:1-9).  Falsified and profaned truth is signified by the following passages concerning blood. In Joel: I will set wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and terrible day come (Joel 2:30-31). In Revelation: The sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the whole moon became as blood (Rev. 6:12). Again The second angel sounded, and as it were a great mountain burning with fire was cast into the sea; and the third part of the sea became blood (Rev. 8:8). Again: The second angel poured out his vial into the sea; and it became blood as of a dead man, and every living soul died in the sea. And the third angel poured out his vial into the rivers, and into the fountains of waters, and there became blood (Rev. 16:3-4).  Similar is what is said in Exodus (7:15-22), about the rivers, ponds, and pools of water in Egypt being turned into blood; for by "Egypt" is signified the memory-knowledge which from itself enters into heavenly mysteries, and hence perverts, denies, and profanes Divine truths (n. 1164, 1165, 1186). All the miracles in Egypt, being Divine, involved such things. The "rivers which were turned into blood" are the truths of intelligence and wisdom (n. 108, 109, 3051); "waters" have a similar signification (n. 680, 2702, 3058), and also "fountains" (n. 2702, 3096, 3424); "seas" are truths in the complex which are a matter of memory-knowledge (n. 28); the "moon" of which it is also said that it should be "turned into blood," is Divine truth (n. 1529-1531, 2495, 4060). It is evident from this, that by the moon, the sea, fountains, waters, and rivers, being turned into blood, is signified truth falsified and profaned.4736.
Cast him into this pit that is in the wilderness. That this signifies that they should conceal it meanwhile among their falsities, that is, that they should regard it as false, but still retain it because it was of importance to the church, is evident from the signification of a "pit," as being falsities (see n. 4728); and from the signification of a "wilderness," as being where there is no truth. For the word "wilderness" has a wide signification, it means where the land is uninhabited, and thus not cultivated; and when predicated of the church, it denotes where there is no good, and consequently no truth (n. 2708, 3900). Thus by a "pit in the wilderness" are here meant falsities in which there is no truth, because no good. It is said in which there is no truth because no good; for when anyone believes that faith saves without works, truth may indeed exist, but still it is not truth in him, because it does not look to good, nor is it from good. This truth is not alive, because it has in it a principle of falsity, consequently with anyone who has such truth, the truth is but falsity from the principle which rules in it. The principle is like the soul, from which the rest have their life. On the other hand there are falsities which are accepted as truths, when there is good in them, especially if it is the good of innocence, as with the Gentiles and also with many within the church.4737.
But lay no hand upon him. That this signifies that they should not do violence to it, is evident without explication.4738.
That he might rescue him out of their hand, to bring him back to his father. That this signifies that it might claim it for the church, is evident from the signification of "rescuing out of their hand," as being to set free-as above (n. 4732) and from the signification of "bringing back to his father" as being to claim for the church; for by Jacob, who is here the "father," is represented the Jewish religion derived from the Ancient Church, as above (n. 4700, 4701). It was the Divine truth concerning the Lord's Divine Human that it would claim for the church, for by Joseph, as before said, this truth is specifically signified.  As further regards this truth, be it known that the Ancient Church acknowledged it, and also the primitive Christian Church; but after the papal sway had grown even to domination over all human souls, and had exalted itself-as is said of the King of Babylon in Isaiah, "Thou saidst in thy heart, I will ascend into the heavens, I will exalt my throne above the stars of heaven, and I will sit in the mount of congregation, I will ascend above the heights of the cloud, I will become like the Most High" (Isa. 14:13-14)-then the Divine was taken away from the Lord's Human, that is, a distinction was then made between His Divine and His Human.  How this was decreed in a certain council has also been revealed to me. There appeared to me certain spirits in front to the left on the plane of the sole of the foot, at some distance from me, who were talking together, but about what I did not hear. I was then told that they were some of those who composed the council in which the decree was made regarding the Lord's two natures, the Divine and the human. Presently it was granted me to converse with them. They said that those who had the greatest influence in the council, and who were superior to the rest in rank and authority, came together in a dark room and there concluded that both a Divine and a human nature should be attributed to the Lord; chiefly for the reason that otherwise the papal sway could not be maintained. For if they had acknowledged the Lord to be one with the Father, as He Himself says, no one could have been acknowledged as His vicar on earth; for schisms were arising at that time by which the papal power might have fallen and been dissipated unless they had made this distinction; and for the strengthening of this invention they sought out confirmations from the Word, and persuaded the rest.  The spirits added that by this means they were able to rule in heaven and on earth, because they had it from the Word that to the Lord was given all power in heaven and on earth, which power could not have been attributed to any vicar if His Human also were acknowledged to be Divine; for they knew that no one was allowed to make himself equal to God, and that the Divine had this power of Itself, but not the Human, unless it had been given it, as it was afterwards to Peter. They continued, that the schismatics of that day were men of acute discernment, whom in this way they were able to quiet, and by this means the papal power was also confirmed. From all this it is evident that this distinction was invented merely for the sake of dominion; and that for this reason they were not willing to know that the power given to the Lord's Human in heaven and on earth shows that it also is Divine. That Peter, to whom the Lord gave the keys of heaven, does not mean Peter, but the faith of charity, which, because it is from the Lord alone, is the power of the Lord alone, can be seen in the preface to the twenty-second chapter of Genesis.4739.
Verses 23-30. And it came to pass when Joseph was come unto his brethren, that they stripped Joseph of his tunic, the tunic of various colors that was on him, and they took him, and cast him into the pit; and the pit was empty, there was no water in it. And they sat down to eat bread, and they lifted up their eyes and saw, and behold a company of Ishmaelites came from Gilead, with their camels bearing spices and balsam and stacte, going to carry them down to Egypt. And Judah said unto his brethren, What gain is it if we slay our brother, and cover up his blood? Come and let us sell him to the Ishmaelites, and let not our hand be upon him, for he is our brother, our flesh. And his brethren hearkened unto him. And there passed by men, Midianites, merchantmen; and they drew and lifted up Joseph out of the pit, and sold Joseph to the Ishmaelites for twenty pieces of silver. And they brought Joseph into Egypt. And Reuben returned unto the pit, and behold Joseph was not in the pit, and he rent his garments. And he returned unto his brethren, and said, The child is not; and I, whither do I come? "And it came to pass when Joseph was come unto his brethren," signifies when it was preached about; "that they stripped Joseph of his tunic," signifies that they dispelled and annihilated the appearances of truth; "the tunic of various colors that was on him," signifies the quality of the appearances as to truths from good; "and they took him and cast him into the pit," signifies among falsities; "and the pit was empty, there was no water in it," signifies that there was then nothing true; "and they sat down to eat bread," signifies appropriation of evil from falsity; "and they lifted up their eyes and saw," signifies further thought; "and behold a company of Ishmaelites came from Gilead," signifies those who are in simple good, such as the Gentiles are in; "with their camels bearing spices and balsam and stacte," signifies interior natural truths; "going to carry them down to Egypt," signifies instruction from memory-knowledges; "and Judah said unto his brethren," signifies the depraved in the church who are against whatever is good; "What gain is it if we slay our brother and cover up his blood?" signifies that there would be nothing of profit or of eminence, if this should be wholly extinguished; "come and let us sell him to the Ishmaelites," signifies that they acknowledge it who are in simple good; "and let not our hand be upon him," signifies that they may be without blame; "for he is our brother, our flesh," signifies because what is from them is accepted; "and his brethren hearkened unto him," signifies compliance; "and there passed by men, Midianites, merchantmen," signifies those who are in the truth of this good; "and they drew and lifted up Joseph out of the pit," signifies aid from them that it might not be among falsities; "and sold Joseph to the Ishmaelites," signifies reception by those who are in simple good, and alienation on the part of those who are in faith separate; "for twenty pieces of silver," signifies estimation; "and they brought Joseph into Egypt," signifies consultation from memory-knowledges; "and Reuben returned unto the pit," signifies the faith of the church in general; "and behold Joseph was not in the pit," signifies that there was no longer any faith; "and he rent his garments," signifies mourning; "and he returned unto his brethren," signifies those who teach; "and said, The child is not," signifies that there was no faith in it; "and I, whither do I come?" signifies where now is the church?4740.
And it came to pass when Joseph was come unto his brethren. That this signifies when it was preached about, is evident from the representation of Joseph, as being truth Divine, especially concerning the Lord's Divine Human. When this is said to "come unto them," it means that it is preached to them; for his brethren represent the church which is in faith separate, to whom this is preached.4741.
That they stripped Joseph of his tunic. That this signifies that they dispelled and annihilated the appearances of truth, is evident from the signification of "stripping," when predicated of Divine truth, which here is "Joseph," as being to dispel and also to annihilate; and from the signification of the "tunic," because it was of various colors, as being appearances of truth (n. 4677). The dispelling and annihilating of the appearances of truth takes place after truth itself has been rejected; for truth itself shines forth of itself in the mind, and however it may be extinguished, still appears, especially in those who are in good. This is also clearly seen by those who have annihilated truth in themselves, wherefore also they endeavor to dispel and to annihilate these appearances.  Take as an example for the sake of illustration - who does not see that to will well and do well is the veriest Christian life? And if anyone is told that this is charity, he cannot but affirm it; and those who affirm it will even say that they know what this is, because this is of the life. But as regards thinking this or that to be true, even from confidence (as they are willing to do who are in faith separate), they will say that they do not know what it is, for they have no other perception of it than as of smoke which vanishes. As faith alone and the confidence from it appear of this character to everyone who thinks seriously about it, especially to the good, therefore such persons labor to dispel and annihilate even these appearances, by thus paring off whatever touches them more nearly, and whatever is round about this Divine truth. This is signified by stripping Joseph of the tunic that was on him.  The same persons also believe that those are wiser than all others, who having once accepted a dogma, whatever it may be, can confirm it by various things, and by various reasonings make it appear like truth. But nothing could be less the part of a wise man; it is what everyone can do who possesses any ingenuity, and the evil more skillfully than the upright. For to do this is not the part of a rational man, inasmuch as a rational man can see, as from above, whether that which is confirmed is true or false; and because he sees this, he regards confirmations of falsity as of no account, and they appear to him as simply ludicrous and empty, no matter how much anyone else believes them to have been taken from the school of wisdom itself. In a word, nothing is less the part of a wise man, nay, nothing is less rational, than to be able to confirm falsities; for it is the part of a wise man and it is rational, first to see that a thing is true, and then to confirm it. In fact to see what is true is to see from the light of heaven, which is from the Lord; but to see what is false as true is to see from a fatuous light, which is from hell.4742.
The tunic of various colors that was on him. That this signifies the quality of the appearances as to truths from good, is evident from the signification of a "tunic of various colors," as being the appearances of truth by which the spiritual of the natural is known and distinguished (n. 4677), here therefore the quality of the appearances; for which reason also a tunic is twice mentioned - "they stripped Joseph of his tunic, the tunic of various colors." That the quality of appearances is according to the truths from good, may be seen from the appearances of truth when presented to view in the light of heaven, that is, in the other life, where there is no other light than that which comes through heaven from the Lord, and which comes forth from His Divine truth; for this before the eyes of angels appears as light (n. 2776, 3190, 3195, 3222, 3339, 3340, 3636, 3643, 3993, 4302, 4413, 4415). This light is varied with everyone according to the reception. All the thought of the angels is effected through the variegation of this light, as also is the thought of man, although he is not aware of it; because with man this light falls into material images or ideas, which, being in his natural or external man, are from the light of the world. Thus the light of heaven is obscured in him to such a degree that he scarcely knows that his intellectual light and sight are from it. But in the other life, when the sight of the eye is no longer in the light of the world, but in the light of heaven, it becomes manifest that his thought is from this source.  When this light passes from heaven into the world of spirits, it is there presented under the appearance of various colors, which in beauty, variety, and loveliness immeasurably surpass the colors which are from the light of the world. (See what was said above in regard to colors, from experience, n. 1053, 1624, 3993, 4530, 4677.) As the colors in the other life are from this source, they are in their origin nothing else than appearances of truth from good. For truth does not shine from itself, because there is nothing flaming in it alone; but it shines from good, for good is like a flame which gives forth light. Such therefore as the good is, such does the truth from it appear; and such as the truth is, in such a manner does it shine from good. From this it is evident what is signified in the internal sense by the tunic of various colors, namely, the quality of appearances as to truths from good; for by Joseph, to whom the tunic belonged, is represented Divine truth, as before shown.4743.
And they took him, and cast him into the pit. That this signifies among falsities, is evident from what has been said above (n. 4728, 4736), where similar words occur.4744.
And the pit was empty, there was no water in it. That this signifies that there was then nothing true, is evident from the signification of a "pit," as being falsities (see n. 4728); from the signification of "being empty, "as being where there is nothing true because nothing good (of which hereafter); and from the signification of "water," as being truth (n. 680, 739, 2702, 3058, 3424). That "being empty" denotes where there is nothing true because nothing good, is evident from other passages in the Word, as in Jeremiah: Their great ones have sent their little ones for waters; they came unto the pits, and found no waters; they returned with their vessels empty; they were affected with shame and ignominy, and covered their head (Jer. 14:3); where "empty vessels" denote truths in which there is no truth from good. Again: Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon hath devoured me, he hath troubled me, he hath made me an empty vessel, he hath swallowed me up (Jer. 51:34); where an "empty vessel" denotes where there is no truth; and "Babylon," those who vastate, that is, deprive others of truths (n. 1327e). Again: I beheld the earth, and lo it was void and empty; and the heavens, and they had no light (Jer. 4:23). In Isaiah: The cormorant and the bittern shall possess it; and the owl and the raven shall dwell therein; and they shall stretch over it the line of a void, and the plummet of emptiness (Isa. 34:11).  Again: The city of emptiness shall be broken; every house shall be shut up, that no one may come in. There is a cry in the streets upon the one, the joy of the land shall be exiled, what is left in the city shall be a waste (Isa. 24:10-12); here "emptiness" is expressed by another word in the original tongue, which, however, involves a similar meaning. That "emptiness" is where there is no truth because no good, is evident in the internal sense from the particulars mentioned, as from the signification of a "city," of a "house," of a "cry," of "wine," and of "streets." In Ezekiel: Hath said the Lord Jehovih, Woe to the city of bloods! I will also make the hearth great, setting the pot empty upon the coals that it may be hot, and the brass thereof may be heated, and that the uncleanness thereof may melt therein, the scum thereof be consumed (Ezek. 24:9, 11); it is evident here what "being empty" signifies; an "empty pot" is that in which there is uncleanness and scum, that is, evil and falsity.  So in Matthew: When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, but findeth none. Then he saith, I will return into my house whence I came out; and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and prepared for him. Then goeth he, and joineth to himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there (Matt. 12:43-45); the "unclean spirit" denotes uncleanness of life in man, and also the unclean spirits with him, for unclean spirits dwell in the uncleanness of man's life; "dry places," or where there is no water, denote where there are no truths; the "empty house" denotes the interiors of man again filled with uncleanness, that is, with falsities from evil. In Luke: God hath filled the hungry with good things, and the rich He hath sent empty away (Luke 1:63); "the rich" denote those who know many things; for "riches" in the spiritual sense are memory-knowledges, doctrinal things, and the knowledges of good and truth. They are called the "empty rich" who know these things, and do not do them; for truths to them are not truths, because without good (see n. 4736).4745.
And they sat down to eat bread. That this signifies the appropriation of evil from falsity, is evident from the signification of "eating," as being appropriation (n. 3168, 3513, 3596, 3832); and from the signification of "bread," as being the good of love (n. 276, 680, 2165, 2177, 3464, 3478, 3735, 3813, 4211, 4217, 4735), and also in general all food (see n. 2165). Here however "bread" signifies the contrary, namely, evil; for it is known that they who eat the bread in the Holy Supper unworthily, do not appropriate good to themselves, but evil; whence it is evident that in the contrary sense by "eating bread" is signified the appropriation of evil. It was a custom among the ancients to eat together when they had made an important decision which was confirmed by the rest, by which they signified their approbation, and thus that they made it their own; as in Ezekiel: Behold, the princes of Israel, everyone according to his arm, have been in thee and have shed blood; men of calumny have been in thee to shed blood; and in thee they have eaten at the mountains (Luke 22:6, 9). Be it known further that there are in general two origins of evil, one from life, and the other from doctrine. The evil which is from the doctrine of falsity is called evil from falsity, and it is this evil which is here meant.4746.
And they lifted up their eyes and saw. That this signifies further thought, is evident from the signification of "lifting up the eyes and seeing," as being intentness and thought, or intense thought (n. 2789, 2829, 3198, 3202, 4339). That here further thought is signified, is evident from the series.4747.
And behold a company of Ishmaelites came from Gilead. That this signifies those who are in simple good, such as the Gentiles are in, is evident from the representation of the Ishmaelites, as being those who are in simple good as to life, and thence in natural truth as to doctrine (n. 3263); and from the signification of "Gilead," as being exterior good, by which man is first initiated when he is being regenerated (n. 4117, 4124). From this it is evident that by a "company of Ishmaelites from Gilead" is signified such good as is with the Gentiles, that is, those who are in such simple good.  How these things are circumstanced may be seen from what has been already said, and also from what follows. This only need now be said in advance: they who are within the church and have confirmed themselves against Divine truths, especially against these - that the Lord's Human is Divine, and that the works of charity contribute to salvation - if they have confirmed themselves against them, not only by doctrine but also by life, they have reduced themselves to such a state as to their interiors that afterwards they cannot possibly be brought to receive them, for what is once confirmed by doctrine, and at the same time by life, remains to eternity. Those who do not know the interior state of man may suppose that anyone, no matter how he has confirmed himself against these truths, can yet easily accept them afterwards, provided he is convinced. But that this is impossible has been granted me to know by much experience in regard to such persons in the other life. For whatever is confirmed by doctrine is absorbed by the intellectual part, and what is confirmed by life is absorbed by the will part; and that which is inrooted in both man's lives, the life of his understanding and the life of his will, cannot be rooted out. The very soul of man which lives after death is formed thereby, and is of such a nature that it never recedes therefrom. This is also the reason why the lot of those within the church with whom this is the case, is worse than the lot of those who are out of the church; for those who are out of the church, who are called Gentiles, have not confirmed themselves against these truths, because they have not known them; and therefore such of them as have lived in mutual charity, easily receive Divine truths, if not in the world, yet in the other life. (See what was adduced from experience in regard to the state and lot of the Gentiles and other peoples in the other life, n. 2589-2604.)  For this reason when any new church is being set up by the Lord, it is not set up with those who are within the church, but with those who are without, that is, with the Gentiles. These things are often treated of in the Word. This much is premised in order that it may be known what is involved in Joseph's being cast into the pit by his brethren, and in his being drawn out thence by the Midianites, and sold to the Ishmaelites. For by Joseph's brethren are represented those within the church who have confirmed themselves against Divine truth, especially against the two truths, that the Lord's Human is Divine, and that works of charity contribute to salvation, and this not only by doctrine, but also by life; while by the Ishmaelites are represented those who are in simple good, and by the Midianites those who are in the truth of this good. It is related of the latter that they drew Joseph out of the pit; and of the former that they bought him. But what is signified by their bringing him into Egypt, and their selling him to Potiphar, Pharaoh's chamberlain, will be shown in what follows.4748.
With their camels bearing spices and balsam and stacte. That this signifies interior natural truths, is evident from the signification of "camels," as being in general those things of the natural man that serve the spiritual, and specifically general memory-knowledges in the natural man (n. 3048, 3071, 3114, 3143, 3145, 4156); and from the signification of "spices, balsam, and stacte," as being interior natural truths conjoined with good in the natural man (of which in what follows). In the holy worship of the ancients use was made of sweet smelling and fragrant things, among which were their frankincense and incenses; and the like things were also mixed with the oils with which they were anointed. But the origin of this practice is at this day unknown, because it is entirely unknown that the things which were used in the worship of the ancients originated in spiritual and celestial things which are in the heavens, and corresponded to them. Man has so far removed himself from the things of heaven, and plunged into natural, worldly, and bodily things, that he is in obscurity, and many are in the negative, as to the existence of anything spiritual or celestial.  The reason why frankincense and incenses were used in sacred rites among the ancients, is that odor corresponds to perception, and a fragrant odor, such as that of spices of various kinds, to a grateful and pleasing perception, such as is that of truth from good, or of faith from charity. Indeed the correspondence is such that in the other life, whenever it is the good pleasure of the Lord, perceptions themselves are changed into odors (as may be seen in what has been said above from experience, n. 925, 1514, 1517-1519, 3577, 4624-4634). What is here signified in detail by "spices, balsam, and stacte," may be seen from other passages in which they are mentioned. In general they signify interior truths in the natural, but such as are from good therein; for truths by themselves do not make the natural, but good by truths. Hence its varieties are according to the quality of the truth conjoined with good, consequently according to the quality of the good; for good has its quality from truths.  As by "Gilead" is signified exterior good such as is of the senses and is called pleasure (n. 4117, 4124), and as by "Egypt" in a good sense are signified memory-knowledges which are the external truths of the natural man corresponding to this good, or agreeing with it (n. 1462), therefore by Ishmaelites from Gilead carrying on camels those spices down to Egypt is signified that they carried their interior truths from their own memory-knowledges, to the memory-knowledges signified by Egypt (of which hereafter). Interior truths are conclusions from exterior truths, or from memory-knowledges; for the memory-knowledges of the natural man serve as a means for drawing conclusions about, and thus viewing, interior things; in like manner as anyone views the mind of another in his countenance, in the vibration of the light in his eyes, and in the life of the tone of his voice, and in that of his gesture and action.  As it is by such truths that man's natural is perfected and also amended, healing is therefore ascribed to spices of this kind-as to balsam in Jeremiah: Is there no balsamic gum in Gilead? Is there no physician there? Why then doth not the health of my people go up? (Jer. 8:22). Go up into Gilead, and take balsam, O virgin daughter of Egypt; in vain hast thou multiplied medicines; there is no healing for thee (Jer. 46:11). Babylon is suddenly fallen and shattered, howl upon her, take balsam for her pain, if so be she may be healed (Jer. 51:8).  That such things have a spiritual signification is very evident in Revelation: The merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over Babylon; for no man buyeth their merchandise any more; merchandise of gold, and silver, and precious stone, and pearl, and fine linen, and crimson, and silk, and scarlet; and all thyine wood, and every vessel of ivory, and every vessel made of most precious wood, and brass, and iron, and marble; and cinnamon, and incense, and ointment, and frankincense, and wine, and oil, and fine flour, and wheat, and cattle, and sheep, and horses, and chariots, and bodies and souls of men (Rev. 18:11-13); these things would never have been so specifically enumerated unless each one of them signified such things as are in the Lord's kingdom and in His church, for otherwise they would have been words without meaning. It is known that by "Babylon" are signified those who have turned aside all worship of the Lord to the worship of self, and who are thus in a profane internal while they are in a holy external, wherefore by their "merchandise" are signified the things which they have studiously and artfully invented for the sake of self-worship, and also doctrinal things and knowledges of good and truth from the Word which they have perverted in their own favor. Thus by the particulars here mentioned such things are specifically signified, and by "cinnamon," "incense," "ointment," and "frankincense" truths from good; but in relation to them truths perverted and falsities from evil.  The same is true of what is related in Ezekiel of the merchandise of Tyre: Judah and the land of Israel were thy traders; in wheat of Minnith, and Pannag, in honey and oil, and balsam, they furnished thy trading (Ezek. 27:17); here also by "balsam" is signified truth from good. To one who does not believe in the internal sense of the Word, all the foregoing expressions must be bare words, thus vessels containing nothing within; and yet Divine, celestial, and spiritual things are in them.4749.
Going to carry them down to Egypt. That this signifies instruction in memory-knowledges is evident from the signification of "Egypt" as being memory-knowledges (n. 1164, 1165, 1462); and as by "spices, balsam, and stacte" are signified interior truths from the memory-knowledges of those who are in simple good, such as the Gentiles are in, therefore by "going to carry them down thither," is signified to be instructed. In regard to these things the case is this: the memory-knowledges which are signified by "Egypt" are those which conduce to spiritual life, and which correspond to spiritual truths; for formerly the Ancient Church was in Egypt also; but after it had been there turned into magic, the memory-knowledges which pervert spiritual things were signified by "Egypt." Thence it is that memory-knowledges in a good, and also in the opposite, sense, are signified in the Word by "Egypt" (n. 1164, 1165, 1462); and here in a good sense. The memory-knowledges from which are the interior truths signified by the Ishmaelites' carrying on camels spices, balsam, and stacte, are not such as are of the church, but such as are with the Gentiles. The truths from these memory-knowledges cannot be corrected and made sound by any other means than by the memory-knowledges of the genuine church, thus by instruction in these. This is what is here signified.4750.
And Judah said unto his brethren. That this signifies the depraved in the church who are against whatever is good, is evident from the representation of Judah, as being in a good sense the good of celestial love (n. 3654, 3881), but in the opposite sense to be against all good whatever (of which hereafter); and from the signification of his "brethren," as being those in the church who are in faith separate. That by Judah are here represented those who are against all good whatever, is because in a good sense they who are in the good of celestial love are represented in the Word by him. Celestial love is love to the Lord and the derivative love toward the neighbor. They who are in this love are most closely conjoined with the Lord, and are therefore in the inmost heaven, where they are in a state of innocence, from which they appear to the rest as little children, and wholly as loves in form. Others are not able to go near them, and therefore when they are sent to others, they are encompassed by other angels, by whom the sphere of their love is tempered, which would otherwise throw into a swoon those to whom they are sent; for the sphere of their love penetrates even to the marrows.  As this love or this good of love which is called celestial is represented by Judah in a good sense, so in the opposite sense is represented by him that which is contrary to celestial good, and thus contrary to all good whatever. Most things in the Word have a twofold sense, namely, a good sense and its opposite. From the good sense the quality of the opposite one is known; for whatever is contained in the opposite sense is diametrically opposed to what is contained in the good sense.  The goods of love are in general two - the good of celestial love, and the good of spiritual love. Diametrically opposed to the good of celestial love, is the evil of the love of self; and diametrically opposed to the good of spiritual love, is the evil of the love of the world. They who are in the evil of the love of self are against all good whatever; but not so much so they who are in the evil of the love of the world. In the Word, by Judah in the opposite sense are represented those who are in the love of self; and by Israel they who are in the love of the world. The reason of this is that by Judah was represented the Lord's celestial kingdom, and by Israel His spiritual kingdom.  The hells also are distinct according to these two loves. They who are in the love of self, being against all good whatever, are in the deepest and therefore the most grievous hell; but they who are in the love of the world, being not so much against all good whatever, are in hells not so deep, and therefore less grievous.  The evil of the love of self is not, as is generally thought, that external elation which is called pride; but it is hatred against the neighbor, and thence a burning desire for revenge, and delight in cruelty. These are the interiors of the love of self. Its exteriors are contempt for others in comparison with self, and an aversion to those who are in spiritual good, and this sometimes with manifest elation or pride, and sometimes without it; for one who holds the neighbor in such hatred, interiorly loves no one but himself and those whom he regards as making one with himself; thus he loves them in himself, and himself in them, for the sole end of self.  Such is the quality of those who are represented by Judah in the opposite sense. The Jewish nation had been in such love even from the first, for they had looked upon all in the whole world as the vilest slaves, and as worthless in comparison with themselves, and had also held them in hatred; and what is more, when the love of self and of the world had not mutually conjoined them, they persecuted even their associates and brothers with similar hatred. This disposition still remains with that nation; but because they now dwell in foreign lands on sufferance, they keep it concealed.
4702-1 The Latin here has ejus, but illorum in n. 4678.