Arcana Coelestia, by Emanuel Swedenborg, [1749-56], tr. by John F. Potts [1905-10], at sacred-texts.com
And the sons of Israel did so. That this signifies the effect from spiritual truths in the natural, is evident from the signification of "did," as being the effect; and from the representation of the sons of Israel, as being spiritual truths in the natural (see n. 5414, 5879). What spiritual truths in the natural are, must be told. Truths of faith outside of man, spirit, or angel, are not truths of faith, for they have not been applied to any subject, in which they become such. But when they are applied to man, spirit, or angel as a subject, they then become truths of faith, but with a difference according to the states of life of each one. With those who are learning them for the first time, they are only memory-knowledges. Afterward if these persons devoutly reverence them, the truths advance further, and become truths of the church; and when they are affected with them and live according to them, they then become spiritual truths; for the good of love and of charity, which is solely from the spiritual world, then fills them and causes them to live; for to be affected with them and to live according to them is from this good. The quality of the truths that are called truths of faith, with those who live according to them, and with those who do not live according to them, has been shown me. With those who do not live according to them, they appeared like white filaments; and with those who had these truths, but nothing of good, they appeared brittle; but with those who live according to them they appeared like fibers from the brain filled with spirit, and soft. Thus these latter truths were animate, but the former were inanimate. From this it may be known that the quality of truths with men is according to the state of life of each. The truths that are represented by the sons of Jacob are truths not yet spiritual, because not yet made of the life. But the truths that are represented by them as sons of Israel are spiritual, because from having been made of the life they have been filled with the good of love and of charity. These latter truths are here meant, because the subject treated of has been the initiation to conjunction of the truths in the natural (which are the sons of Jacob) with internal good (which is Joseph), through the intermediate (which is Benjamin), and also through spiritual good (which is Israel).5952.
And [Joseph] gave them carts, according to the mouth of Pharaoh. That this signifies that from the internal they had doctrinal things as was pleasing, is evident from the representation of Joseph, who is he that "gave," as being internal good (of which above); from the signification of "carts," as being doctrinal things (see n. 5945); and from the signification of "according to the mouth of Pharaoh," as being as was pleasing, namely, to spiritual truths, which are the sons of Israel; because these truths are in the natural which is represented by Pharaoh (n. 5160, 5799), and the carts, by which are signified doctrinal things, were placed at their disposal. It is said "as was pleasing," because the doctrinal things which are signified by the "carts of Egypt" are from the literal sense of the Word (n. 5945), which without the internal sense can be applied to any good whatever. For the Lord does not openly teach anyone truths, but through good leads to the thinking of what is true, and unknown to the man He also inspires the perception and consequent choice that such a thing is true because the Word so declares, and because it accords therewith. Thus the Lord adapts truths according to the reception of good by each person; and as this takes place according to each person's affection, thus in freedom, it is here said "as was pleasing."5953.
And gave them provision for the way. That this signifies support meanwhile from good and truth, is evident from the signification of "provision," as being support from good and truth (see n. 5490).5954.
And to all of them he gave each changes of garments. That this signifies truths initiated in good, is evident from the signification of "garments" as being truths (of which below). Thus "changes of garments" are truths which are new; and truths become new when they are initiated in good, because they then receive life. For the subject treated of is the conjunction of the natural man with the spiritual, or of the external man with the internal. When the conjunction is being effected, then truths are changed and become new, for they receive life from the influx of good (as just above, n. 5951). (That to change the garments was representative of holy truths being put on, and that hence came changes of garments, see n. 4545.)  That by "garments" in the Word are signified truths, is because truths clothe good almost as the vessels do the blood, and the fibers the [animal] spirit. That a "garment" is a significative of truth is because spirits and also angels appear clothed in garments, and each according to the truths appertaining to him. Those appear in white garments who are in the truths of faith through which is good, but those appear in bright shining garments who are in the truths of faith that are from good; for good shines through the truth, and gives the resplendence (see n. 5248).  That spirits and angels appear in garments can also be seen from the Word, where it is mentioned that angels were seen, as in Matthew: The appearance of the angel sitting at the Lord's sepulcher was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow (Matt. 28:3). In John: Upon the thrones I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white garments (Rev. 4:4). In the same: He that sat upon the white horse was clothed in a garment dipped in blood; and His name is called The Word of God. His armies which are in heaven followed Him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean (Rev. 19:11, 13, 14); "garments white as snow," and "fine white linen," signify holy truths, for whiteness and shining white are predicated of truths (n. 3301, 3993, 4007, 5319), for the reason that they approach nearest to light, and the light which is from the Lord is Divine truth; and therefore when the Lord was transfigured, His garments appeared as the light, of which in Matthew: When Jesus was transfigured His face did shine as the sun, and His garments became as the light (Matt. 17:2). That "light" is Divine truth is known in the church, and that it is compared to a "garment" is evident in David: Jehovah covereth Himself with light as with a garment (Ps. 104:2).  That "garments" are truths is plain from many passages in the Word, as in Matthew: When the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man not clad with a wedding garment; and he said to him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? wherefore he was cast out into the outer darkness (Matt. 22:11-13); who are meant by "him not clad in a wedding-garment" may be seen at n. 2132. In Isaiah: Wake up! wake up! put on thy strength, O Zion; put on the garments of thine ornament, O Jerusalem, the city of holiness; because there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean (Isa. 52:1); "garments of ornament" denote truths from good.  In Ezekiel: I clothed thee with broidered work, and shod thee with badger (taxo), and I girded thee with fine linen, and covered thee with silk. Thy garments were of fine linen, and silk, and broidered work; thou didst eat fine flour, honey, and oil (Ezek. 16:10, 13); speaking of Jerusalem, by which is there meant the Ancient spiritual Church which was set up by the Lord after the Most Ancient celestial Church had expired. The truths with which this church was endowed are described by the "garments;" "broidered work" is memory-knowledge, which when genuine also appears in the other life like broidered work, and like lace, as also it has been given to see; "fine linen and silk" are truths from good; but in heaven, being in the light there, these are intensely bright and are transparent.  In the same: Fine linen in broidered work from Egypt was thy sail; blue and crimson from the isles of Elishah were thy covering (Ezek. 27:7); speaking of Tyre, by which are represented the knowledges of truth and good (n. 1201), which when genuine are "fine linen in broidered work from Egypt;" the derivative good, or good of truth, is the "blue and crimson."  In David: The king's daughter is all glorious; of inweavings of gold is her garment; in embroideries shall she be brought to the king (Ps. 45:13, 14); the "king's daughter" denotes the affection of truth; "of inweavings of gold is her garment" denotes the truths wherein is good; "embroideries" denote the lowest truths. In John: Thou hast a few names in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with Me in white ones, because they are worthy. He that overcometh shall be clothed in white garments (Rev. 3:4, 5); "not to defile the garments" denotes not to befoul truths with falsities.  In the same: Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, that he walk not naked, and they see his shame (Rev. 16:15); "garments" in like manner denote truths. It is the truths of faith from the Word which are properly signified by "garments." He who has not acquired these from that source, or he who has not acquired truths or semblances of truths from his religiosity, as the Gentiles, and applied them to life, is not in good, howsoever he supposes himself to be. For as he has no truths from the Word, or from his religiosity, he suffers himself to be led by means of reasonings equally by evil spirits as by good spirits, and thus cannot be defended by the angels. This is meant by the exhortation "to watch and to keep his garments, that he walk not naked and they see his shame."  In Zechariah: Joshua was in defiled garments; thus he stood before the angel, who said to those who stood before him, Remove the defiled garments from before him. And unto him he said, See I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and am clothing thee with changes of garments (Zech. 3:3, 4); "defiled garments" denote truths polluted by falsities which are from evil; wherefore when these garments are removed, and others are put on, it is said, "See, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee." Anyone can know that iniquity does not pass away by a change of garments, and hence also anyone can conclude that a change of garments was representative, as was also the washing of garments, which was commanded when the people were being purified, as when they came near unto Mount Sinai (Exod. 19:14), and when they were being cleansed from things impure (Lev. 11:25, 40; 14:8, 9; Num. 8:6, 7; 19:21; 31:19-24).  For cleansings from things impure are effected through the truths of faith, because these teach what good is, what charity, what the neighbor, what faith, that there is a Lord, that there is a heaven, that there is eternal life. Without truths which teach, it is not known what these things are, nor even that they are. Who from himself knows otherwise than that the good of the love of self and of the world is the only good appertaining to man; for both are the delight of his life? And who can know except from the truths of faith that there is another good which can be applied to man, namely, the good of love to God and the good of charity toward the neighbor, and that in these goods is heavenly life; and also that this good flows in through heaven from the Lord insofar as the man does not love himself more than others, and insofar as he does not love the world more than heaven? From all this it is evident that the purification which was represented by the washing of garments is effected through the truths of faith.5955.
And to Benjamin he gave three hundred pieces of silver. That this signifies that the intermediate had fullness of truth from good, is evident from the representation of Benjamin, as being the intermediate (see n. 5600, 5631, 5639, 5688, 5822); from the representation of Joseph, who "gave," as being internal good (n. 5826, 5827, 5869, 5877); from the signification of "three hundred," as being what is full (of which below); and from the signification of "silver," as being truth (n. 1551, 2954, 5658). From all this it is plain that by "he gave to Benjamin three hundred pieces of silver" is signified that he gave to the intermediate fullness of truth from good; for the intermediate which Benjamin represents is interior truth through influx from the internal celestial (n. 5600, 5631). That "three hundred" signifies what is full, is because this number arises from three and a hundred by multiplication, and "three" signifies what is full (n. 2788, 4495) and a "hundred" signifies much (n. 4400); for what compound numbers involve is seen from the simple numbers from which they are.  "Three hundred" also involves a like meaning where it is mentioned elsewhere in the Word, as that The ark of Noah was three hundred cubits in length (Gen. 6:15); also that there were three hundred men through whom Gideon smote Midian, of whom it is written in the book of Judges: The number of them that lapped in their hand at their mouth, was three hundred men. Jehovah said unto Gideon, By the three hundred men that lapped will I give Midian into thine hand. Gideon divided the three hundred men into three troops, and he gave a trumpet into the hand of each of them, and empty pitchers, and torches in the midst of the pitchers. When they sounded with the three hundred trumpets, Jehovah set every man's sword against his fellow, and against the whole camp (Judg. 7:6, 7, 16, 22); by the "three hundred men" here also is signified what is full, as also by the three troops into which these three hundred were divided; and by the "hundred" which was the number of each troop is signified much and enough, consequently that they would be sufficient against Midian. Moreover all these things were representative, namely, that those were taken who lapped water in the hand; that each one had a trumpet, and pitchers in which were torches; and this because by Midian, against whom they were going, was represented truth which was not truth, because there was no good of life. But each of these things will of the Lord's Divine mercy be treated of elsewhere. That numbers also were representative, is evident from many other passages, as the number "seven" in Joshua, when they took Jericho; for it was then commanded that seven priests should bear seven jubilee trumpets before the ark, and that on the seventh day they should compass the city seven times (Josh. 6:4).5956.
And five changes of garments. That this signifies much of truth from the natural, is evident from the signification of "five," as being much (n. 5708); and from the signification of "changes of garments," as being truths initiated in good. That it is from the natural, is because "garments" are predicated of the natural. That the intermediate which is represented by Benjamin had truth from the natural, is because in order to be an intermediate it partakes of the internal and of the external (n. 5822). That which is from the internal is meant by the intermediate having fullness of truth from good, which is signified by the "three hundred pieces of silver" (of which just above, n. 5955). That which is from the external is meant by much of truth from the natural, which is signified by the "five changes of garments."5957.
And to his father he sent after this manner. That this signifies what was given gratuitously to spiritual good, is evident from the representation of Israel, who is here the "father," as being spiritual good from the natural (see n. 5801, 5803, 5807, 5812, 5817, 5819, 5826, 5833); and from the signification of "sending," as being to give gratuitously. For everything that flows in from the Lord through the internal into the external, or into the natural (even what flows into spiritual good, which is "Israel," because this good is from the natural), is given gratuitously. The Lord does indeed demand humiliation, adoration, thanksgivings, and many other things from man, which appear like repayings, and thus not gratuitous; but the Lord does not demand these things for His own sake, for the Divine has no glory from man's humiliation, adoration, and thanksgiving. In the Divine, anything of the love of self is utterly inconceivable-that such things should be done for His own sake; but they are for the sake of the man himself; for when a man is in humiliation he can receive good from the Lord, because he has then been separated from the love of self and its evils, which are the obstacle; and therefore the Lord wills a state of humiliation in man for his own sake; because when he is in this state the Lord can flow in with heavenly good. The case is similar with adoration, and with thanksgiving.5958.
Ten asses carrying of the good of Egypt. That this signifies [better] 5958-1 memory-knowledges with many things of service, is evident from the signification of "ten," as being much (see n. 3107, 4638, 5708); from the signification of "asses," as being memory-knowledges (n. 5741), here the lowest memory-knowledges (n. 5934), which because they carry interior things are things of service; and from the signification of the "good of Egypt," as being memory-knowledges (see above, n. 5942, 5949), but the memory-knowledges of the church, for these are properly signified by "Egypt" (n. 4749, 4964, 4966). That these are the "good of Egypt" is because they are sent by Joseph to Israel, that is, by the internal celestial to spiritual good.5959.
And ten she-asses carrying grain and bread. That this signifies the truth of good and the good of truth, also with many things of service, is evident from the signification of "ten," as being much (as above, n. 5958); from the signification of "she-asses," as being things of service (as also just above, 5958); from the signification of "grain," as being the good of truth (n. 5295, 5410), but here the truth of good, because from the internal celestial which is "Joseph;" and from the signification of "bread," as being the good of this truth (n. 276, 680, 2165, 2177, 3478, 3735, 4211, 4217, 4735, 4976). In regard to "grain" signifying the truth of good, and in other places the good of truth, the case is this. The significations are different when the influx is from the internal celestial, from what they are when it is from the internal spiritual. That which flows in from the internal celestial is nothing but good, which indeed has truth within it, but this truth is good. But that which flows in from the internal spiritual is nothing but truth, which when it becomes of the life is called the "good of truth." Hence then it is that "grain" sometimes signifies the good of truth, and sometimes the truth of good, here the truth of good, because from the internal celestial which is "Joseph." That she-asses carried the grain and bread, and he-asses the good of Egypt, is because by "he-asses" are signified things of service insofar as they relate to truth, and by "she-asses" are signified things of service insofar as they relate to good. For this reason the he-asses carried such things as were suitable for them, and the she-asses such as were suitable for them. Unless this had been the case there would have been no need to mention that there were asses and she-asses, and what the one and the other carried.5960.
And nourishment for his father for the way. That this signifies interior truth for spiritual good meanwhile, is evident from the signification of "nourishment," as being interior truth, for this comes forth from the truth of good and the good of truth, which are signified by "grain and bread" (see just above, n. 5959), and moreover interior truth is nourishment for spiritual good; from the representation of Israel who is here the "father," as being spiritual good (n. 5957); and from the signification of "for the way," as being meanwhile, namely, before it came, that is, before full conjunction was effected.5961.
Verses 24-28. And he sent his brethren away, and they departed; and he said unto them, Contend not in the way. And they went up out of Egypt, and came into the land of Canaan unto Jacob their father. And they told him, saying, Joseph is yet alive, and he is ruler in all the land of Egypt. And his heart failed, because he believed them not. And they spake unto him all the words of Joseph which he spake unto them; and he saw the carts which Joseph had sent to carry him, and the spirit of Jacob their father revived; and Israel said, It is much; Joseph my son is yet alive; I will go and see him before I die. "And he sent his brethren away, and they departed," signifies concealment; "and he said unto them, Contend not in the way," signifies a perception given that they should be in tranquillity; "and they went up out of Egypt," signifies a receding from the memory-knowledges of the church; "and came into the land of Canaan unto Jacob their father," signifies a dwelling where was natural good but not spiritual good; "and they told him, saying," signifies influx and notice; "Joseph is yet alive," signifies that the internal was not rejected; "and he is ruler in all the land of Egypt," signifies that the natural mind is under its authority; "and his heart failed, because he believed them not," signifies a lack of life of the natural and thence of understanding; "and they spake unto him all the words of Joseph which he spake unto them," signifies influx from the celestial of the spiritual; "and he saw the carts which Joseph had sent to carry him," signifies doctrinal things thence derived which might persuade; "and the spirit of Jacob their father revived," signifies new life; "and Israel said," signifies spiritual good now; "It is much: Joseph my son is yet alive," signifies joy that the internal had not perished; "I will go and see him before I die," signifies a longing for conjunction previous to what is new.5962.
And he sent his brethren away, and they departed. That this signifies concealment, is evident from the signification of "sending away," as being to remove from himself, consequently to be no more present with them as before; and from the signification of "going" or "departing," as being to live, also to live more remotely, and also to leave (see n. 3335, 3416, 3690, 4882, 5493, 5696); thus it denotes to be concealed. That removal from the internal celestial and thus the concealment of it, is now treated of, is evident from the things which follow in their internal sense.  He who does not know how the case is with the state of life of spirits, and of the angels in the heavens, cannot know why the concealment of truth and of good should now be treated of, seeing that just before they had been in the light of these. In heaven this state is that spirits and angels have their morning, midday, and evening, also twilight, and again morning, and so on. It is their morning when the Lord is present and blesses them with manifest happiness: they are then in the perception of good. It is their midday when they are in the light of truths; and it is their evening when they are removed therefrom, and then it appears to them that the Lord is more remote and is hidden from them. All who are in heaven undergo and pass through these alternations, and cannot otherwise be continually perfected, for thereby they have relatives, and from the relatives a more perfect conception, since they thereby know what is not happy, because they thereby know what is not good and what is not true.  It is worthy of admiration that to eternity one state is never exactly like another, and also that one spirit and angel does not pass through the like changes of state as another, for the reason that one is not exactly like another in respect to good and truth; just as neither is one man exactly like another in the face. Nevertheless out of these varieties the Lord makes a one. It is a general canon that everyone that has any quality comes forth from various things which are reduced into such unanimity that by agreement of harmony they all appear as a one. In the heavens the unity thus formed, or union, is effected through love and charity (see also n. 3241, 3267, 3744, 3745, 3986, 4005, 4149, 4598).  The concealment which is signified by "Joseph's sending his brethren away and their departing," is called in the Word "evening," and occurs with the angels at the times when they do not perceive the Lord to be present; for there is in heaven a continual perception of the Lord. When they are in a state of non-perception they are not then affected with good, neither do they see truth, as before; this troubles them, but shortly afterward the dawn comes, and so the morning.5963.
And he said unto them, Contend not in the way. That this signifies a perception given that they should be in tranquillity, is evident from the signification of "saying unto them," as being a perception given by the internal, which is "Joseph" (of which often above); and from the signification of "not contending in the way," as being to be in tranquillity; for contention with others is intranquillity, because it is a disturbance of the lower mind. The varying states in the other life of which mention has been made just above (n. 5962), are according to the perception of good and truth with those who are there, thus according to their perception of the Lord's presence. According to this perception they have tranquillity; for they who are in the perception of the Lord's presence are in the perception that each and all things which befall them tend to their good, and that evils do not reach them; hence they are in tranquillity. Without such faith or confidence in the Lord no one can possibly come to the tranquillity of peace, thus neither to the bliss in joy, because this bliss dwells in the tranquillity of peace.5964.
And they went up out of Egypt. That this signifies a receding from the memory-knowledges of the church, is evident from the signification of "going up" thence, as being to recede (mention is made of "going up out of Egypt into the land of Canaan," and of "coming down from that land into Egypt," for a reason several times stated above: here by "going up" is signified departing); and from the signification of "Egypt," which in the proper sense denotes the memory-knowledges of the church (see n. 4749, 4964, 4966). That these memory-knowledges are here signified is because they were in them when in Egypt with Joseph (n. 5958). Removal from those things which are of good and of truth, thus from those things which are of the church, is here treated of down to the last verse of this chapter, which removal is meant by the concealment mentioned above (n. 5962), and here by receding. In the Word this state is signified by "evening." When men are in this state, they recede from things heavenly and spiritual, and accede to such as contain nothing spiritual and heavenly. But this concealment or receding does not come to pass by the Lord's concealing Himself or receding, but by they themselves doing so; for they can no longer be withheld from their own, because to do so is not fitting; and therefore this state arrives when they are left to themselves or their own; and insofar as they are thus left, or are immersed therein, so far they recede from those things which are of heaven, and so far good becomes imperceptible to them, and truth obscure. From this it is evident that the Lord does not conceal Himself, but that the man, spirit, or angel conceals himself.5965.
And came into the land of Canaan unto Jacob their father. That this signifies a dwelling where there was natural good but not spiritual good, is evident from the signification of the "land of Canaan," as being the church (n. 3686, 3705, 4447, 4517, 4736), thus the dwelling of those who represented the church, who, it is known, were the descendants of Jacob; and from the representation of Jacob, as being natural good (n. 3305, 3659, 3775, 4009, 4073, 4234, 4538), but not spiritual good, for this is represented by Israel (that Jacob represents the external of the church and Israel the internal, see n. 4286, 4570). Whether you say natural good, or the external of the church; and whether spiritual good, or the internal of the church, it is the same; for natural good constitutes the external of the church, and spiritual good the internal of the church.  That is called spiritual which is in the light of heaven, for that which is in this light has in it the affection of good and the perception of truth. These are in this light because this light is from the Lord; and therefore they who are in spiritual good and truth are in the internal of the church, for as to their heads they are within heaven. But that is called natural which is in the light of the world, and that which is in this light has no affection of good and perception of truth in itself, but out of itself; for the light of heaven flows in and illumines what is round about; thus what is without, not what is within; and causes good to be known as good and truth to be known as truth because it is so said, and not because it is perceived to be so; and therefore they who are in natural good are in the external of the church, for as to their heads they are not in heaven, but their heads are illumined thence from without. Jacob is now called "Jacob," not "Israel," for the reason that now they are in externals; as is plain from what has been said above.5966.
And they told him saying. That this signifies influx and notice, is evident from the signification of "telling," as being to be communicated and conjoined (see n. 4856, 5596), thus also influx, for that which is told flows into the thought; and from the signification of "saying" in the historicals of the Word, as being perception (of which frequently above), and thus also notice.5967.
Joseph is yet alive. That this signifies that the internal was not rejected, is evident from the representation of Joseph, as being internal good (see n. 5805, 5826, 5827, 5869, 5877); and from the signification of "being alive," as being as yet to be, thus not rejected. That "being alive" is not to be rejected, is because the internal which is represented by Joseph was at first rejected by the sons of Jacob, and because their father had then believed that he had perished by evils and falsities (n. 5828); thus now by "being alive" is signified that it is not so.5968.
And he is ruler in all the land of Egypt. That this signifies that the natural mind is under its authority, is evident from the signification of "being ruler," as being to be under its authority; and from the signification of the "land of Egypt," as being the natural mind (see n. 5276, 5278, 5280, 5301).5969.
And his heart failed, because he believed them not. That this signifies a lack of life of the natural, and thence of understanding, is evident from the signification of the "heart failing," as being a lack of life; and because it is said of Jacob, by whom is represented natural good (see n. 5965), it signifies a lack of life of the natural; and from the signification of "not believing," as being a lack of understanding. The reason why it is said thence, is that the life which is of the will always precedes, and the life of the understanding follows. The reason is that in the will alone is life, and not in the understanding except from the will. It is evident from the good which is of the will and from the truth which is of the understanding, that life is in good, but not in truth except from good; for it is manifest that what lives is always prior, and that what lives therefrom is posterior. This is the reason why it is said a lack of life of the natural and thence of understanding, which is signified by his "heart failing, because he believed them not."5970.
And they spake unto him all the words of Joseph which he spake unto them. That this signifies influx from the celestial of the spiritual, is evident from the signification of "speaking," as being influx (see n. 2951, 5481, 5797); and from the representation of Joseph, as being the celestial of the spiritual (n. 4286, 4592, 4963, 5307, 5331, 5332, 5417).5971.
And he saw the carts which Joseph had sent to carry him. That this signifies doctrinal things thence derived which might persuade, is evident from the signification of "carts," as being doctrinal things (see n. 5945, 5952); from the signification of "which Joseph had sent," as being which were from the internal celestial; and from the signification of "to carry him," as being which might persuade; for to carry him to Joseph that he might see him denotes to persuade. Moreover that he was persuaded by seeing the carts is evident from the words which now follow, namely, "the spirit of Jacob their father revived; and Israel said, It is much; Joseph my son is yet alive."5972.
And the spirit of Jacob their father revived. That this signifies new life, is evident from the signification of the "spirit reviving," as being new life; and from the representation of Jacob, as being natural good (see n. 5965). Thus by "the spirit of Jacob revived" is signified new life to natural good. Life becomes new when what is spiritual flows in from the internal and acts from within in those things which are in the natural. Thereby natural good becomes spiritual, adjoined to the spiritual good which is represented by Israel, for which reason also Jacob is now called "Israel," for it is said, "the spirit of Jacob revived, and Israel said."5973.
And Israel said. That this signifies spiritual good now, is evident from the representation of Israel, as being spiritual good (see n. 5801, 5803, 5807, 5817, 5819, 5826, 5832, 5833). (What is meant by the spiritual good which is "Israel," and what by the natural good which is "Jacob," may be seen above, n. 5965.) He who is unacquainted with the internal sense of the Word cannot possibly know why Jacob is sometimes called "Jacob," and sometimes "Israel;" for in the same chapter, and even in the same verse, now one name is used and now the other. Hence it is very evident that there is an internal sense in the Word, as here where it is said, "the spirit of Jacob their father revived, and Israel said;" and in like manner in other passages: Benjamin, Joseph's brother, Jacob sent not with his brethren; and the sons of Israel came in the midst of those who came (Gen. 42:4, 5). Israel journeyed; God said to Israel in the visions of the night, Jacob, Jacob; and he said, Behold me (Gen. 46:1, 2). Jacob rose up from Beersheba; and the sons of Israel carried Jacob their father (Gen. 46:5). All the souls of the house of Jacob that came into Egypt were seventy; Joseph harnessed his chariot, and went up to meet Israel; and Israel said unto Joseph (verses 27, 29, 30). Israel dwelt in the land of Egypt, in the land of Goshen; Jacob lived in the land of Egypt seventeen years; and the days of Israel drew near to die (Gen. 47:27-29). And one told Jacob and said, Behold thy son Joseph cometh unto thee; and Israel strengthened himself, and sat upon the bed; and Jacob said unto Joseph (Gen. 48:2, 3). Jacob called his sons, and said, Assemble yourselves, and hear, ye sons of Jacob; listen to Israel your father (Gen. 49:1, 2). Cursed be their anger, for it was vehement, and their wrath, for it was hard; I will divide them in Jacob, and scatter them in Israel (Gen. 49:7). The arms of his hands shall be made strong by the hands of the strong one of Jacob; from thence is the shepherd, the stone of Israel (Gen. 49:24); besides frequently in the prophets.5974.
It is much; Joseph my son is yet alive. That this signifies joy that the internal had not perished, is evident from the representation of Joseph, as being the internal celestial; and from the signification of "being alive," as being not to have perished, nor to have been rejected (see above, n. 5967); that joy is denoted is manifest.5975.
I will go and see him before I die. That this signifies a longing for conjunction previous to what is new, is evident from the signification of "going and seeing," as being to be conjoined. The reason why "to see" denotes to be conjoined is that in the spiritual world interior sight conjoins. For interior sight is thought, and in a society there when many act as a one (and also in choirs), what the one thinks the other also thinks; thus thought conjoins. And likewise when anyone thinks of another, he is presented to view; in this way also thought conjoins. Hence it is that by "going and seeing" is signified conjunction. That a longing for conjunction is signified, follows from the joy spoken of just above (n. 5974). And from the signification of "before I die," as being previous to what is new, namely, to what is new of representation. For in the Word representatives succeed each other in such a manner that when one person dies, there follows either a like representative by another person, or another representative; thus what is new (see n. 3253, 3259, 3276); as when Abraham died, a representative by Isaac succeeded; and when he died, a representative by Jacob succeeded; and when he died, a representative by his posterity succeeded. This is the new thing here meant.5976.
Continuation concerning the angels and spirits with man. At the end of the preceding chapter it was shown that there are with every man two spirits from hell and two angels from heaven, who effect communication both ways, and also that the man is in freedom.5977.
That there are two, is because there are two kinds of spirits in hell and two kinds of angels in heaven, to which the two faculties in man, namely, the will and the understanding, correspond. Spirits of the one kind are called simply spirits and act into what is of the understanding. Those of the other kind are called genii and act into what is of the will. The two kinds are also most distinct from each other. They who are called simply spirits infuse falsities, for they reason against truth and are in the delight of their life when they can make what is true appear as false, and what is false appear as true. But they who are called genii infuse evils, act into the affections and concupiscences of a man, and scent in a moment what the man desires. If this is good, they bend it most cunningly into evil, and are in the delight of their life when they can make good to be perceived as evil, and evil as good. It was permitted them to act into my desires, that I might know of what nature they are and how they act, and I can avouch that unless the Lord had guarded me by angels they would have perverted my desires into concupiscences of evil, and this in a manner so hidden and silent that I should scarcely have noticed anything about it. These latter, who are called genii, have nothing at all in common with those who are called spirits. The genii have no concern as to what a man thinks, but only as to what he loves; whereas the spirits have no concern about what a man loves, but about what he thinks. The genii vest their delight in being silent, but the spirits in speaking. The two are also altogether separated from each other. The genii are in the hells deep down behind, and are invisible there to the spirits; and when anyone looks in there, they appear like flitting shadows. But the spirits are in the hells at the sides and in front. This then is the reason why there are with man two spirits from hell.5978.
That there are two angels with every man is because of these also there are two kinds, of which one act into what is of man's will, and the other into what is of his understanding. They who act into what is of man's will, act into his loves and ends, consequently into his goods. But they who act into what is of man's understanding, act into his faith and principles, consequently into his truths. These two kinds also are most distinct from each other. They who act into what is of man's will are called celestial, and they who act into what is of his understanding are called spiritual. To the celestial are opposed the genii, and to the spiritual the spirits. These things it has been given me to know by much experience, for I am continually in company and discourse with them both.5979.
A man who is in faith believes that none but angels from heaven are with him, and that diabolical spirits are altogether removed from him. But I can assert that in the case of a man who is in the concupiscences and delights of the love of self and of the world, and regards these as the end, diabolical spirits are so near him as to be in him, and to rule both his thoughts and his affections. Angels from heaven cannot possibly be within the sphere of such, but are without; and therefore the angels recede as the infernal spirits approach nearer. Nevertheless the angels from heaven in no case recede altogether from a man, for then all would be over with him, because if he should be without communication with heaven by means of angels, he could not live.  That there are infernal spirits and heavenly angels with man is also in some measure taught by the doctrine of faith of Christian Churches; for this declares that all good is from God, and that evil is from the devil; and preachers confirm this by their prayers in the pulpit that God may direct their thoughts and their words, and by their saying that in justification all endeavors, even the least, are from God; and also that when a man lives well he suffers himself to be led by God; and likewise that angels are sent by God to minister to man. And on the other hand, when a man has committed any enormous evil, they say he has suffered himself to be led by the devil, and that such evil is from hell. They would also have said that spirits from hell were flowing into the interior evils which are of the will and the thought, if they had acknowledged these evils to be so great.5980.
The angels attentively and continually observe what the evil spirits and genii with a man are intending and attempting; and insofar as the man suffers it, they bend evils into goods, or to goods, or toward goods.5981.
There sometimes appears to view with infernal spirits and genii things shameful and filthy, and in fact such things as an evil man thinks and speaks. Lest on account of such things the angels should flee away altogether, these shameful and filthy things are perceived by them as being milder than they really are. In order that I might know how such things are perceived by the angels, when shameful things presented themselves there was given me the angelic perception, which was such that I felt no horror. The shameful things were turned into a mildness such as cannot be described, but can only be compared to things angular and pungent when the angularity and pungency are taken away from them. In this way the shameful and filthy things of infernal spirits and genii are dulled with the angels.5982.
By means of evil spirits on the one hand and angels on the other, the Lord places a man in equilibrium between evils and goods, and between falsities and truths, so that the man may be in freedom. For in order that a man may be saved he must be in freedom, and in freedom be drawn away from evil and led to good. Whatever is not effected in freedom does not remain, because it is not appropriated. This freedom is from the equilibrium in which the man is kept.5983.
That man has communication with hell and with heaven through the two spirits and the two angels, may be seen from the fact that in the other life one society cannot have communication with another, or with anyone, except through spirits who are sent forth by the societies. These emissary spirits are called Subjects, for through them as subjects the societies speak. To send forth subjects to other societies, and in this way to get communication, is one of the familiar things of the other life, and is very well known to me from the fact that subjects have been sent to me a thousand times, and that without them the societies could not know anything appertaining to me, and could communicate to me nothing appertaining to themselves. This shows that the spirits and genii with man are nothing but subjects through whom he has communication with hell, and that the celestial and spiritual angels are subjects through whom he has communication with the heavens.5984.
When the spirits who are in the world of spirits desire to have communication with a number of societies, they are wont to send forth subjects, one to each society. And I have observed that evil spirits sent out many round about and stationed them like a spider setting its web, the senders being in the middle. And to my surprise they know how to do this as from a kind of instinct; for they who had known nothing of such things in the life of the body, do it at once in the other life. From this also it is evident that communications are effected through emissary spirits.5985.
A Subject is one in whom are concentrated the thoughts and speech of many, and in this way many are presented as one. And as a subject thinks and speaks nothing whatever from himself, but from others, and the thoughts and speech of others are there presented to the life, therefore they who flow in suppose that the subject is as it were nothing and scarcely animate, being merely a receptive of their thought and speech. But on the other hand the subject supposes that he does not think and speak from others, but from himself alone. Thus fallacies delude both. It has often been given me to say to a subject that he thinks and speaks nothing from himself, but from others; and also that those others suppose that a subject cannot think and speak anything from himself; thus that he appears to them like one in whom there is nothing of life from himself. Upon hearing this the spirit who was the subject was very indignant. But in order that he might be convinced of the truth, it was given to speak with the spirits who were flowing in, who then confessed that a subject thinks and speaks nothing whatever from himself, and thus that he appears to them to be something scarcely animate. It also once happened that he who said that a subject is nothing, himself became a subject, and then the rest said of him that he was nothing, at which he was greatly enraged, and yet was thereby instructed how the case is.5986.
It is worthy of mention (for it has often happened and thus been shown) that no one either in heaven or in hell thinks, speaks, wills, and acts from himself, but from others, and thus at last all and each do so from the general influx of life, which is from the Lord. When I have heard the spirits saying that a spirit does not think and speak anything from himself, and yet the subject supposed he did so solely from himself, it has then been frequently given to speak with those who were flowing into the subject; and when they persisted in the assertion that they thought and spoke from themselves, but not so the subject from himself, and because they supposed that they so thought and spoke, it was further given to tell them that this is a fallacy, and that they as well as the subject were thinking and speaking from others. In order to confirm this point, it was also given to speak with those who were flowing into these latter, and when they also made a like confession, it was further given to speak with those who were flowing into these, and so on in a continued series. Thus it became plain that everyone was thinking and speaking from others. This experience excited in the spirits the utmost indignation, for every one of them desires to think and speak from himself. But because they were thereby instructed how the case is, they were told that everything of thought and also of will flows in, because there is but one only life, from which are these faculties of life; and that this life flows in from the Lord through a wonderful form, which is the heavenly form, not only in a general way into all, but also particularly into each; and that it is varied everywhere according to the form of each subject, as this agrees or disagrees with the heavenly form. From all this it is also evident how the case is with man, of which more will be said in what follows, when treating of influx.5987.
The more there are who concentrate their look into one subject, the stronger is the subject's power of thinking and speaking. The power is increased according to the increase in number of the concordant looks. This was also shown by the withdrawal of some who were flowing in, for then the subject's power of thinking and speaking was diminished.5988.
There were subjects with me near the head, who spoke as if they were asleep, but still spoke well, as do they who are not in a state of sleep. It was observed that evil spirits were flowing into these subjects with malignant deceits, but that the influx into them was instantly dissipated; and as the evil spirits knew that these spirits had previously been their subjects, they complained that they were no longer so. The reason was that being asleep good spirits could act into them, and thus by their influx the malignities of the evil spirits were dispelled. Nevertheless the evil spirits were compelled to flow into these subjects and not into others. This shows that there are subjects of different kinds and natures, and that the variations are in accordance with the Lord's disposal.5989.
The most deceitful, who are above the head, once took subjects and sent them forth to me, in order that they might flow in with their deceits; but they were much disappointed. One, when made a subject, writhed back and closed himself, and folded himself as in a roll, in order thus to reject the influx. In this way he extricated himself from them. Then they took another, but neither could they force him to speak, he being more deceitful than they, which he showed by rolling himself as it were into the form of a spiral. In this way they were cheated. Moreover evil spirits do not always send forth subjects from their own body, but observe what spirits are with others, and also where are those who are simple and obedient, and these they make their subjects. This is effected by directing their thoughts into the subject spirit, and infusing into him their own affections and persuasions, whereby he is no longer his own master, but serves them as a subject. Of this he is sometimes unaware.5990.
There are very many spirits at this day who desire to flow not only into man's thoughts and affections, but also into his speech and actions, thus even into the things of his body; when yet the things of the body are exempt from the particular influx of spirits and angels, and are directed by general influx. In other words, when what is thought is determined into speech, and what is willed is determined into acts, the determination and transition into the body are according to order, and are not directed by any spirits in particular; for to flow into man's bodily things is to obsess him. The spirits who will and intend this are those who in the life of the body had been adulterers, that is, who had perceived delight in adulteries and had persuaded themselves that they are allowable; and also those who had been cruel. The reason is that both the former and the latter are more corporeal and sensual than all others, and have rejected all thought about heaven, attributing all things to nature and nothing to the Divine. In this way they have closed up interior things against themselves, and have opened external things; and because in the world they had been solely in the love of these, therefore in the other life they long to return into them through man by obsessing him.  But it is provided by the Lord that such infernals should not come into the world of spirits; they being kept in their hells, well shut up. Therefore there are no external obsessions at this day, but still there are internal ones, also the work of the infernal and diabolical crew; for evil men think such things as are filthy and also cruel towards others, and also such as are adverse and malignant toward what is Divine; and unless such thoughts were kept in check by fear of the loss of honor, of gain, and of reputation on account of these, of legal penalties, and of the loss of life, they would burst forth openly, and thus such men would rush more than the obsessed into the destruction of others, and into blasphemies against the things of faith. But these external bonds cause them not to seem to be obsessed, although they are so as to their interiors, but not as to their exteriors. This is very manifest from such as they in the other life, where external bonds are removed. There they are devils, being continually in the delight and desire of ruining others and destroying whatever is of faith.5991.
I saw spirits who must be called bodily spirits. They rose up from the deep, at the side of the sole of the right foot. They appeared to the sight of my spirit as if in a gross body; and when I asked who they are that are like this, it was said that they are those who in the world have excelled in talent, and also in the sciences, and have thereby utterly confirmed themselves against the Divine, thus against those things which are of the church; and because they have fully persuaded themselves that all things are of nature, they have more than others closed their interiors, thus all that belongs to the spirit. Hence they appear grossly corporeal. Among them was one whom I had known during his life in the world, and who then was celebrated for his talents and his learning. But these gifts, which are means of thinking well about Divine things, were to him means of thinking against them, and of persuading himself that they are of no account; for he who excels in talent and learning excels also in the means of confirmation. Hence he had been interiorly obsessed, but in the external form he had appeared as a man of civic and moral virtues.5992.
The angels, through whom the Lord leads and also protects a man, are near his head. It is their office to inspire charity and faith, and to observe in what direction the man's delights turn, and insofar as they can, without interfering with the man's freedom, moderate them and bend them to good. They are forbidden to act with violence and thus break the man's cupidities and principles; but are enjoined to act gently. It is also their office to rule the evil spirits who are from hell, which is done in innumerable ways, of which the following only may be mentioned. When the evil spirits pour in evils and falsities, the angels insinuate truths and goods, which, if not received, are nevertheless the means of tempering. Infernal spirits continually attack, and the angels protect; such is the order.  The angels especially regulate the affections, for these make the man's life, and also his freedom. The angels also observe whether any hells are open that were not open before, and from which there is influx with the man, which takes place when the man brings himself into any new evil. These hells the angels close so far as the man allows, and remove any spirits who attempt to emerge therefrom. They also disperse strange and new influxes that produce evil effects.  Especially do the angels call forth the goods and truths that are with a man, and set them in opposition to the evils and falsities which the evil spirits excite. Thus the man is in the midst, and does not perceive either the evil or the good; and being in the midst, he is in freedom to turn himself either to the one or to the other. By such means do angels from the Lord lead and protect a man, and this every moment, and every moment of a moment; for if the angels were to intermit their care for a single moment, the man would be precipitated into evil from which he could never afterward be brought out. These things the angels do from the love they have from the Lord, for they perceive nothing more delightful and happy than to remove evils from a man, and lead him to heaven. That this is a joy to them, see Luke 15:7. Scarcely any man believes that the Lord takes such care of a man, and this continually from the first thread of his life to the last of it, and afterward to eternity.5993.
From all this it is now evident that for a man to have communication with the spiritual world there must be joined to him two spirits from hell and two angels from heaven, and that without these he would have no life whatever. For a man cannot possibly live from general influx, as do animals void of reason (of which n. 5850), because his whole life is contrary to order; and being in this state, if a man were acted on by general influx only, he would necessarily be acted on by the hells only, and not from the heavens; and if he were not acted on from the heavens he would have no interior life, thus no life of thought and will such as is proper to man, and not even such as is proper to a brute animal, because a man is born without any use of reason, and can be initiated into it solely through influx from the heavens.  From all that has been advanced it is also evident that a man cannot live without communication with the hells through spirits from them, for the whole of his life which he derives from his parents by inheritance, and all that he himself adds from his own, is of the love of self and of the world, and not of the love of the neighbor, and still less of love to God. And as the whole of man's life from his own is of the love of self and of the world, it is therefore a life of contempt for others in comparison with self, and of hatred and revenge against all who do not favor self. Thus it is also a life of cruelty; for he who hates, desires to kill, and is therefore most highly delighted with the destruction of others. Unless spirits of a like nature were applied to these evils (and such spirits must be from hell), and unless the man were led by them in accordance with the delights of his life, he could not possibly be bent toward heaven. At first he is bent by means of his delights themselves; and by these is also set in freedom, thus at last in the faculty of exercising choice. Genesis 46 1. And Israel journeyed, and all that he had, and came to Beersheba, and sacrificed sacrifices to the God of his father Isaac. 2. And God said to Israel in the visions of the night, and He said, Jacob, Jacob. And he said, Behold me. 3. And He said, I am God; the God of thy father; fear not to go down into Egypt, for I will there make of thee a great nation. 4. I will go down with thee into Egypt; and I will cause thee to go up, even in going up; and Joseph shall put his hand upon thine eyes. 5. And Jacob rose up from Beersheba; and the sons of Israel carried Jacob their father, and their babes, and their women, in the carts which Pharaoh had sent to carry him. 6. And they took their cattle, and their acquisition which they had acquired in the land of Canaan, and came into Egypt, Jacob, and all his seed with him: 7. His sons, and his sons' sons with him, his daughters, and his sons' daughters, and all his seed, brought he with him into Egypt. 8. And these are the names of the sons of Israel, who came into Egypt, of Jacob and of his sons: Reuben, Jacob's firstborn. 9. And the sons of Reuben: Hanoch, and Pallu, and Hezron, and Carmi. 10. And the sons of Simeon: Jemuel, and Jamin, and Ohad, and Jachin, and Zohar, and Shaul the son of a Canaanitish woman. 11. And the sons of Levi: Gershon, and Kohath, and Merari. 12. And the sons of Judah: Er, and Onan, and Shelah, and Perez, and Zerah; but Er and Onan died in the land of Canaan. And the sons of Perez were Hezron and Hamul. 13. And the sons of Issachar: Tola, and Puvah, and Iob, and Shimron. 14. And the sons of Zebulun: Sered, and Elon, and Jahleel. 15. These are the sons of Leah, whom she bare unto Jacob in Paddan-aram, and his daughter Dinah; all the souls of his sons and of his daughters were thirty and three. 16. And the sons of Gad: Ziphion, and Haggi, Shuni, and Ezbon, Eri, and Arodi, and Areli. 17. And the sons of Asher: Imnah, and Ishvah, and Ishvi, and Beriah, and Serah their sister; and the sons of Beriah: Ber, and Malchiel. 18. These are the sons of Zilpah, whom Laban gave to Leah his daughter, and these she bare to Jacob: sixteen souls. 19. The sons of Rachel, Jacob's wife: Joseph and Benjamin. 20. And to Joseph were born in the land of Egypt, whom Asenath the daughter of Potiphera priest of On bare unto him, Manasseh and Ephraim. 21. And the sons of Benjamin: Bela, and Becher, and Ashbel, Gera, and Naaman, Ehi, and Rosh, Muppim, and Huppim, and Ard. 22. These are the sons of Rachel, who were born to Jacob: all the souls were fourteen. 23. And the sons of Dan: Hushim. 24. And the sons of Naphtali: Jahzeel, and Guni, and Jezer, and Shillem. 25. These are the sons of Bilhah, whom Laban gave unto Rachel his daughter, and these she bare to Jacob; all the souls were seven. 26. All the souls that came with Jacob into Egypt, that came out of his thigh, besides Jacob's sons' women, all the souls were sixty and six. 27. And the sons of Joseph, who were born to him in Egypt, were two souls. All the souls of the house of Jacob, that came into Egypt, were seventy. 28. And he sent Judah before him unto Joseph, to show before him unto Goshen; and they came into the land of Goshen. 29. And Joseph harnessed his chariot, and went up to meet Israel his father, to Goshen; and he was seen of him, and fell upon his necks, and wept upon his necks a long while. 30. And Israel said unto Joseph, Let me die, after that I have seen thy faces, that thou art yet alive. 31. And Joseph said unto his brethren, and unto his father's house, I will go up, and will tell Pharaoh, and will say unto him, My brethren, and my father's house, who were in the land of Canaan, are come unto me; 32. And the men are shepherds of the flock, for they are men of cattle; and they have brought their flocks, and their herds, and all that they have. 33. And it may be that Pharaoh will call you, and will say, What are your works? 34. And ye shall say, Thy servants have been men of cattle from their youth even until now, both we, and our fathers; in order that ye may dwell in the land of Goshen; for every shepherd of the flock is an abomination of the Egyptians.5994.
The Contents. In this chapter the subject treated of in the internal sense is the conjunction of the internal celestial which is "Joseph," with spiritual good from the natural which is "Israel." There are then enumerated the truths and goods of the church in their order, wherewith conjunction must afterward be effected. The truths and goods of the church are Israel's sons and grandsons, who came into Egypt.5995.
The Internal Sense. Verse 1. And Israel journeyed, and all that he had, and came to Beersheba, and sacrificed sacrifices to the God of his father Isaac. "And Israel journeyed, and all that he had," signifies the beginning of conjunction; "and came to Beersheba," signifies charity and faith; "and sacrificed sacrifices to the God of his father Isaac," signifies worship therefrom, and influx from the Divine intellectual.5996.
And Israel journeyed, and all that he had. That this signifies the beginning of conjunction, is evident from the signification of "journeying," as being what is successive and continuous (see n. 4375, 4882, 5493); here, what was continuous and successive in the glorification of the Lord, who in the supreme sense is "Israel" and "Joseph;" but in the internal sense, what is continuous and successive in the regeneration of man. And as in this chapter the subject of the conjunction of the natural man with the spiritual, or of the external with the internal, now succeeds and is continued, therefore by the words "Israel journeyed, and all that he had" is signified the beginning of this conjunction.5997.
And came to Beersheba. That this signifies charity and faith, is evident from the signification of "Beersheba," as being the doctrine of charity and of faith (see n. 2858, 2859, 3466), but here, charity and faith, and not their doctrine, for it is predicated of spiritual good, which is "Israel." Spiritual good is more than doctrine, doctrine being from this good; and therefore he who has arrived at spiritual good has no more need of doctrinal things, which are from others; for he is in the end whither he was tending, and is no longer in the means thereto; and doctrinal things are nothing but the means of arriving at good as the end. This is the reason why by "Beersheba" is signified charity and faith.5998.
And sacrificed sacrifices to the God of his father Isaac. That this signifies worship therefrom and influx from the Divine intellectual, is evident from the signification of "sacrificing sacrifices," as being worship (see n. 922, 923, 2180); and from the representation of Isaac, as being in the supreme sense the Divine rational or intellectual of the Lord (n. 1893, 2066, 2072, 2083, 2630, 3012, 3194, 3210). That influx therefrom into worship is signified, follows, for the worship meant is that from charity and faith, which are signified by "Beersheba" (n. 5997), where he sacrificed. That Jacob sacrificed to the God of his father Isaac, shows what was the nature of the fathers of the Jewish and Israelitish nation, namely, that each of them worshiped his own God. That the God of Isaac was a God other than Jacob's, is evident from the fact that he sacrificed to him, and that in the visions of the night it was said unto him, "I am God, the God of thy father;" and also from the fact that he swore by the same in these words: "The God of Abraham, and the God of Nahor, the God of their father, judge between us; and Jacob sware by the Dread of his father Isaac" (Gen. 31:53). And it is also evident that at first Jacob did not acknowledge Jehovah, for he said, "If God will be with me, and will keep me in this way in which I walk, and will give me bread to eat, and garment to put on, and I return in peace to my father's house, then shall Jehovah be my God" (Gen. 28:20, 21). Thus he acknowledged Jehovah conditionally.  It was their custom to acknowledge the gods of their fathers, but their own in especial. This custom they derived from their fathers in Syria; for Terah, Abram's father, and also Abram himself when there, worshiped other gods than Jehovah (n. 1356, 1992, 3667). Their posterity, who were called "Jacob" and "Israel," were consequently of such a disposition that at heart they worshiped the gods of the Gentiles, and Jehovah only with the mouth and in name alone. The reason why they were such was that they were in externals alone without any internal, and such men can believe no otherwise than that worship consists merely in uttering the name of God and in saying that He is their God, and this so long as He is their benefactor; and that worship does not at all consist in a life of charity and faith.5999.
Verses 2-4. And God said to Israel in the visions of the night, and He said, Jacob, Jacob. And he said, Behold me. And He said, I am God, the God of thy father; fear not to go down into Egypt, for I will there make of thee a great nation. I will go down with thee into Egypt; and I will cause thee to go up, even in going up; and Joseph shall put his hand upon thine eyes. "And God said to Israel in the visions of the night," signifies obscure revelation; "and He said, Jacob, Jacob," signifies to natural truth; "and he said, Behold me," signifies notice; "and he said, I am God, the God of thy father," signifies the Divine intellectual from which is the influx; "fear not to go down into Egypt," signifies that natural truth with all things appertaining to it must be initiated into the memory-knowledges of the church; "for I will there make of thee a great nation," signifies that truths shall become good; "I will go down with thee into Egypt," signifies the presence of the Lord in that state; "and I will cause thee to go up, even in going up," signifies elevation afterward; "and Joseph shall put his hand upon thine eyes," signifies that the internal celestial shall vivify.6000.
And God said to Israel in the visions of the night. That this signifies obscure revelation, is evident from the signification of "God said in the visions" as being revelation. For revelations were made either by dreams, or by night visions, or by day visions, or by speech within the man, or by speech without him from angels that were seen, and also by speech without him from angels that were not seen. By all these are signified in the Word various kinds of revelations, and by a "vision of the night," obscure revelation; for "night" signifies what is obscure (see n. 1712, 2514), and obscurity in the spiritual sense is that truth does not appear. Moreover in the Word "night" signifies falsity from evil, for they who from evil are in falsity are in the obscurity of night. Thus all who are in hell are said to be in night. They indeed are in a kind of light there, for they see one another; but this light is like the light from a hard-coal fire, and is turned into darkness and thick darkness when heavenly light flows in. Hence it is that they who are in hell are said to be in night, and that they are called angels of night and of darkness; and on the other hand they who are in heaven are called angels of day and of light.  That "night" denotes what is obscure, and likewise what is false, may also be seen from the following passages in the Word. In John: Jesus said, Are there not twelve hours in the day? If anyone walk in the day, he stumbleth not. But if anyone walk in the night, he stumbleth, because the light is not in him (John 11:9, 10); "twelve hours" denote all states of truth; "walking in the day," denotes to live in truth; and "walking in the night," to live in falsity.  Again: I must work the works of Him that sent Me while it is day; the night cometh when no one can work (John 9:4); "day" denotes truth from good; and "night," falsity from evil. It is the first time of the church which is meant by "day," for then truth is received, because men are in good; and it is the last time of the church which is meant by "night," for then nothing of truth is received, because men are not in good. For when man is not in good, that is, when he is not in charity toward the neighbor, then even if the veriest truths are told him, he receives them not, for then it is not at all perceived what is true, because the light of truth falls into such things as are of the body and the world, which alone are attended to, and alone are loved and estimated as real; but not into such things as are of heaven, because with such men these are relatively of little or no account. Thus the light of truth is absorbed and smothered in what is densely dark, as is the light of the sun in what is black. This is signified by "the night cometh when no one can work." It is also such a time at this day.  In Matthew: While the bridegroom tarried, all the virgins slumbered and slept. But at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh (Matt. 25:5, 6); "midnight" also denotes the last time of an old church, when there is nothing of faith because nothing of charity, and also the first time of a new church. In Luke: I say unto you, In that night there shall be two upon one bed; the one shall be accepted, and the other shall be left (Luke 17:34); here in like manner "night" denotes the last time of an old church and the first of a new one.  In Matthew: Jesus said to the disciples, All ye shall be scandalized against Me in this night. And to Peter, In this night, before the cock crow, thou shalt deny Me thrice (Matt. 26:31, 34); that it pleased the Lord to be taken at night, signified that with them at that time Divine truth was in the obscurity of night, and that falsity from evil was in its place. And that Peter denied the Lord thrice in that night, also represented the last time of the church, when the truth of faith is indeed taught, but is not believed. Such a time is "night," because the Lord is then utterly denied in the hearts of men; for the twelve apostles, like the twelve tribes of Israel, represented all things of faith (n. 577, 2089, 2129, 2130, 3272, 3354, 3488, 3858, 3913, 3926, 3939, 4060), and Peter represented the faith of the church (see the preface to Gen. 18; also to Gen. 22; and also n. 3750, 4738). Therefore it was that the Lord said unto Peter that "in that night he should deny Him thrice;" and to the disciples, "all ye shall be scandalized against Me in this night."  In Isaiah: One calleth unto me out of Seir, Watchman, what of the night? watchman, what of the night? The watchman said, The morning cometh, and also the night 12); speaking of the coming of the Lord, which is the "morning," which coming was when there was no longer any spiritual truth in the earth, and which is "night."  In Zechariah: It shall be one day which is known to Jehovah; not day nor night; for about the time of evening there shall be light. It shall come to pass in that day that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem; and Jehovah shall be king over all the earth; in that day shall Jehovah be one, and His name one (Zech. 14:7-9); speaking here likewise of the Lord and also of a new church. "Jehovah who shall be king, and Jehovah being one and His name one," is the Lord as to the Divine Human, which should be one with the Divine Itself which is called the "Father." Before the coming of the Lord the Divine Human was Jehovah in the heavens, for by passing through the heavens He presented Himself as a Divine Man before many on earth. But at that time the Divine Human was not so completely one with the Divine Itself which is called the "Father," as when the Lord made it in Himself altogether one. That before this they were as it were distinct, is plain from the nineteenth chapter of Genesis, where it is said, "Jehovah caused it to rain upon Sodom and Gomorrah sulfur and fire from Jehovah out of heaven" (verse 24; see n. 2447). The "day when it was not day nor night," is when the Lord was born; for it was then "evening," that is, the end of the representatives of the church; the "light about the time of evening" is the Divine truth which would then appear.  In Isaiah: Surely in the night Ar has been laid waste, Moab has been cut off; surely in the night Kir of Moab has been laid waste (Isa. 15:1); "Moab" denotes natural good, and in the opposite sense adulterated good (n. 2468); its vastation is here treated of. Vastations are said to be effected "in the night," because truth is then obscured, and falsity enters. In Jeremiah: The great city weeping shall weep in the night, and her tear shall be on her cheek (Lam. 1:2); describing the desolation of truth; "night" denotes falsity.  In David: Thou shalt not be afraid of the dread of night, of the arrow that flieth by day, nor of the death that wasteth at noonday (Ps. 91:5, 6); the "dread of night" denotes falsities of evil which are from hell; the "arrow that flieth by day," falsity which is openly taught, whereby good is destroyed; the "death that wasteth at noonday," evil which is lived in openly, whereby truth is destroyed. In John: The gates of the holy Jerusalem shall not be shut by day; for there is no night there (Rev. 21:25). There shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light (Rev. 22:5). "There shall be no night there" denotes that there shall be no falsity. In Daniel: Daniel said, I saw in my vision when it was night. After this I saw in the visions of the night 7); "visions of the night" here also denote obscure revelation, for in this passage the four beasts are treated of, and their horns, and many things which belong to obscure revelation. It is similar with the horses of various colors which Zechariah saw "in the night" (Zech. 1:8, and following verses).
5958-1 As in n. 5950.