Doctrine of Sacred Scriptures, by Emanuel Swedenborg, , tr. by John F. Potts  at sacred-texts.com
i. The Word cannot be understood without doctrine. This is because the Word in the sense of the letter consists exclusively of correspondences, to the end that things spiritual and celestial may be simultaneous or together therein, and that every word may be their container and support. For this reason, in some places in the sense of the letter the truths are not naked, but clothed, and are then called appearances of truth. Many truths also are accommodated to the capacity of simple folk, who do not uplift their thoughts above such things as they see before their eyes. There are also some things that appear like contradictions, although the Word when viewed in its own light contains no contradiction. And again in certain passages in the Prophets, names of persons and places are gathered together from which, in the letter, no sense can be elicited, as in those passages adduced above (n. 15). Such being the Word in the sense of the letter, it is evident that it cannot be understood without doctrine.  But to illustrate this by examples. It is said, That Jehovah repents (Exod. 32:12, 14; Jonah 3:9; 4:2); And also That Jehovah does not repent (Num. 23:19; 1 Sam. 15:29). Without doctrine these passages cannot be reconciled. It is said That Jehovah visits the iniquity of the fathers upon the sons to the third and fourth generation (Num. 14:18); And it is also said that The father shall not die for the son, nor the son for the father, but everyone for his own sin (Deut. 24:16). Interpreted by doctrine these passages are not discordant, but are in agreement.  Jesus says, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you; for everyone that asketh shall receive, and he that seeketh shall find, and to him that knocketh it shall be opened (Matt. 7:7-8; 21:21-22). Without doctrine it might be believed that everyone will receive what he asks for; but from doctrine it is believed that whatever a man asks not from himself but from the Lord is given; for this also is what the Lord says, If ye abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you (John 15:7).  The Lord says, Blessed are the poor, for theirs is the kingdom of God (Luke 6:20). Without doctrine it may be thought that heaven is for the poor and not for the rich, but doctrine teaches that the poor in spirit are meant, for the Lord says, Blessed are the poor in spirit; for theirs is the kingdom of heaven (Matt. 5:3).  The Lord says, Judge not, that ye be not judged; for with what judgment ye judge ye shall be judged (Matt. 7:1-2; Luke 6:37). Without doctrine this might be cited to confirm the notion that it is not to be said of what is evil that it is evil, thus that an evil person is not to be judged to be evil; yet according to doctrine it is lawful to judge, but justly; for the Lord says, Judge righteous judgment (John 7:24).  Jesus says, Be not ye called Teacher, for One is your Teacher, even the Christ. And call no man your father on the earth; for One is your Father in the heavens. Neither be ye called masters; for One is your Master, the Christ (Matt. 23:8-10). Without doctrine it would seem that it is not lawful to call any person teacher, father, or master; but from doctrine it is known that in the natural sense it is lawful to do this, but not in the spiritual sense.  Jesus said to His disciples, When the Son of man shall sit upon the throne of His glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel (Matt. 19:28). From these words it may be inferred that the Lord's disciples will sit in judgment, when yet they can judge no one. Doctrine therefore must reveal this secret by explaining that the Lord alone, who is omniscient and knows the hearts of all, will sit in judgment, and is able to judge; and that His twelve disciples mean the church as to all the truths and goods it possesses from the Lord through the Word; from which doctrine concludes that these truths will judge everyone, according to the Lord's words in John 3:17-18; 12:47-48.  He who reads the Word without doctrine does not see the consistency of what is said in the prophets about the Jewish nation and Jerusalem - that the church with that nation, and its seat in that city, will remain to eternity; as in the following passages: Jehovah will visit his flock the house of Judah, and will make them as a horse of glory in war; from him shall come forth the corner stone, from him the nail, and from him the bow of war (Zech. 10:3-4, 6-7). Behold I come, that I may dwell in the midst of thee. And Jehovah shall make Judah an inheritance, and shall again choose Jerusalem (Zech. 2:10, 12). It shall come to pass in that day that the mountains shall drop new wine, and the hills shall flow with milk, and Judah shall be to eternity, and Jerusalem from generation to generation (Joel 3:18-20). Behold, the days come in which I will sow the house of Israel and the house of Judah with the seed of man, and in which I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah; and this shall be the covenant, I will put My law in their inward parts, and will write it upon their heart and I will be their God, and they shall be My people (Jer. 31:27, 31, 33). In that day ten men shall take hold, out of all the languages of the nations, of the skirt of a man that is a Jew, saying, We will go with you, for we have heard that God is with you (Zech. 8:23). So in other places, as Isa. 44:21, 24, 26; 49:22, 23; 65:9; 66:20, 22; Jer. 3:18; 23:5; 50:19, 20; Nahum 1:15; Mal. 3:4. In these passages the Lord's advent is treated of, and that this [establishment of the Jews] will then come to pass.  But the contrary is declared in many other places, of which this passage only shall be adduced: I will hide My face from them, I will see what their latter end shall be, for they are a generation of perversions, sons in whom is no faithfulness. I said, I will cast them into outermost corners, I will make the remembrance of them to cease from man, for they are a nation void of counsel, neither is there understanding in them; their vine is of the vine of Sodom, and of the fields of Gomorrah; their grapes are grapes of gall; their clusters are of bitternesses; their wine is the poison of dragons, and the cruel venom of asps. Is not this hidden with Me, sealed up among My treasures? To Me belongeth vengeance and retribution (Deut. 32:20-35). It is of that same nation that these things are said. And things of the same purport are said elsewhere, As in Isa. 3:1-2, 8; 5:3, 6; Deut. 9:5-6; Matt. 12:39; 23:27-28; John 8:44; and in Jeremiah and Ezekiel throughout. These passages which seem contradictory will however from doctrine be seen to accord, for this teaches that in the Word "Israel" and "Judah" do not mean Israel and Judah, but the church in both senses, in one that it is devastated, in the other that it is to be set up anew by the Lord. Other things like these exist in the Word, from which it plainly appears that the Word cannot be understood without doctrine.52.
From all this it is evident that they who read the Word without doctrine, or who do not acquire for themselves doctrine from the Word, are in obscurity as to every truth, and that their minds are wavering and uncertain, prone to errors, and pliant to heresies, which they also embrace wherever inclination or authority favors, and their reputation is not endangered. For the Word is to them like a lampstand without a lamp, and in their gloom they seem to see many things, and yet see scarcely anything, for doctrine alone is a lamp. I have seen such persons examined by angels, and found to be able to confirm from the Word whatever they please, and it was also found that they confirm what is of their own love and of the love of those whom they favor. And I have seen them stripped of their garments, a sign that they were devoid of truths; for in the spiritual world garments are truths.53.
ii. Doctrine must be drawn from the sense of the letter of the Word, and be confirmed thereby. The reason of this is that there and not elsewhere is the Lord present with man, and enlightens him and teaches him the truths of the church. Moreover the Lord never operates anything except in what is full, and the Word is in its fullness in the sense of the letter, as has been shown above. This is why doctrine must be drawn from the sense of the letter.54.
That by means of doctrine the Word not only becomes intelligible, but also as it were shines with light, is because without doctrine it is not understood, and is like a lampstand without a lamp, as has been shown above. By means of doctrine therefore the Word is understood, and is like a lampstand with a lighted lamp. The man then sees more things than he had seen before, and also understands those things which before he had not understood. Dark and contradictory things he either does not see and passes over, or sees and interprets them so that they agree with the doctrine. The experience of the Christian world attests that the Word is seen from doctrine, and is also interpreted according to it. All the Reformed see and interpret the Word from and according to their own doctrine; so do the Papists from and according to theirs, and even the Jews do so from and according to theirs; thus from a false doctrine all see falsities, and from a true doctrine truths. It is evident therefore that true doctrine is like a lamp in the dark, and a guidepost on the way. But doctrine is not only to be drawn from the sense of the letter of the Word, but must also be confirmed thereby; for if not so confirmed the truth of doctrine appears as if only man's intelligence were in it, and not the Lord's Divine wisdom; and so the doctrine would be like a house in the air, and not on the earth, and would lack a foundation.55.
The doctrine of genuine truth can also be drawn in full from the sense of the letter of the Word, because in this sense the Word is like a man clothed whose face and hands are bare. All things that concern man's life, and consequently his salvation, are bare; but the rest are clothed. In many places also where they are clothed they shine through their clothing, like a face through a thin veil of silk. The truths of the Word also appear and shine through their clothing more and more clearly in proportion as they are multiplied by a love for them, and are ranged in order by this love. But this also is by means of doctrine.56.
It might be believed that the doctrine of genuine truth could be procured by means of the spiritual sense of the Word which is furnished through a knowledge of correspondences. But doctrine is not procured by means of that sense, but is only lighted up and corroborated. For as said before (n. 26), no one comes into the spiritual sense of the Word by means of correspondences unless he is first in genuine truths from doctrine. If a man is not first in genuine truths he may falsify the Word by means of some correspondences with which he is acquainted, by connecting them together and interpreting them so as to confirm that which cleaves to his mind from some principle previously received. Moreover the spiritual sense of the Word is not given anyone except by the Lord alone, and it is guarded by Him as heaven is guarded, for heaven is in it. It is better therefore for man to study the Word in the sense of the letter; from this alone is doctrine furnished.57.
iii. The genuine truth which must be of doctrine appears in the sense of the letter to none but those who are in enlightenment from the Lord. Enlightenment is from the Lord alone, and exists with those who love truths because they are truths and make them of use for life. With others there is no enlightenment in the Word. The reason why enlightenment is from the Lord alone is that the Lord is in all things of the Word. The reason why enlightenment exists with those who love truths because they are truths and make them of use for life is that such are in the Lord and the Lord in them. For the Lord is His own Divine truth, and when this is loved because it is Divine truth (and it is loved when it is made of use), the Lord is in it with the man. This the Lord teaches in John: In that day ye shall know that ye are in Me and I in you. He that hath My commandments, and doeth them, he loveth Me, and I will love him, and will manifest Myself to him; and I will come unto him, and make My abode with him (John 14:20-21, 23). And in Matthew: Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God (Matt. 5:8). These are they who are in enlightenment when they are reading the Word, and to whom the Word shines and is translucent.58.
The reason why the Word shines and is translucent with such, is that there is a spiritual and celestial sense in every particular of the Word, and these senses are in the light of heaven, so that through these senses and by their light the Lord flows into the natural sense, and into the light of it with a man. This causes the man to acknowledge the truth from an interior perception, and afterwards to see it in his own thought, and this as often as he is in the affection of truth for the sake of truth. For perception comes from affection, and thought from perception, and thus is produced the acknowledgment which is called faith. But of these things more will be said in the following chapter concerning the conjunction of the Lord with man by means of the Word.59.
With such men the first thing is to get for themselves doctrine from the sense of the letter of the Word, and thus light a lamp for their further advance. Then after doctrine has been procured, and a lamp thus lighted, they see the Word by its means. Those however who do not procure doctrine for themselves, first make investigation as to whether the doctrine delivered by others and received by the general body accords with the Word, and they assent to what accords, and from what does not accord they dissent. In this way it becomes to them their own doctrine, and through doctrine their faith. But this takes place only with those who not being taken up with worldly affairs are able to exercise discernment. If these persons love truths because they are truths, and make them of use for life, they are in enlightenment from the Lord. All others who are in some life according to truths can learn from them.60.
The contrary takes place with those who read the Word from the doctrine of a false religion, and still more with those who confirm that doctrine from the Word, having in view their own glory or this world's riches. With them the truth of the Word is as it were in the shade of night, and what is false is as in the light of day. They read what is true, but do not see it; and if they see the shadow of it they falsify it. These are they of whom the Lord says that: They have eyes, but see not; and ears, but do not understand (Matt. 13:13). For nothing else blinds a man except his own and the confirmation of what is false. Man's own is the love of self and the derivative conceit of self-intelligence; and the confirmation of what is false is thick darkness counterfeiting the light. The light of such men is merely natural, and their sight is like that of one who sees phantoms in the gloom.61.
I have been permitted to converse with many after death who had believed that they would shine in heaven like the stars, because, as they said, they had regarded the Word as holy, had often read it through, had collected from it many things by which they had confirmed the tenets of their faith, and had thereby been celebrated in the world as learned men. On this account they believed they would be Michaels and Raphaels.  Many of them however have been examined in respect to what was the love from which they had studied the Word, and some of them were found to have done so from the love of self, that they might appear great in the world, and be revered as dignitaries of the church; and others of them had done so from the love of the world, that they might get rich. When examined as to what they knew from the Word, it was found that they knew nothing of genuine truth from it, but only such as is called truth falsified, which in itself is falsity. And they were told that this was because their ends (or what is the same their loves) had been themselves and the world, and not the Lord and heaven. When men read the Word while themselves and the world are the ends in view, their minds cleave to themselves and the world, and this causes them to be constantly thinking from their own, 61-1 which is in thick darkness in respect to all things of heaven, in which state the man cannot be withdrawn by the Lord from his own, and thus be raised into the light of heaven, and consequently cannot receive through heaven any influx from the Lord.  I have even seen them admitted into heaven, but when they were found to be devoid of truths, they were cast down; yet the conceit remained that they deserved heaven. Very different has it been with those who had studied the Word from the affection of knowing truth because it is truth, and because it is of service to the uses of life, not only to their own uses but also to those of the neighbor. I have seen these raised up into heaven, and thus into the light in which is Divine truth there, and at the same time exalted into angelic wisdom and its happiness, which is eternal life.62.
VI BY MEANS OF THE SENSE OF THE LETTER OF THE WORD THERE IS CONJUNCTION WITH THE LORD AND ASSOCATION WITH THE ANGELS The reason why there is conjunction with the Lord by means of the Word is that the Word treats solely of him, and the Lord is consequently its all in all and is called the Word, as has been shown in Doctrine of the Lord. The reason why the conjunction is in the sense of the letter is that in this sense the Word is in its fullness, its holiness, and its power, as has been shown above in its proper chapter. The conjunction is not apparent to the man, but is in the affection of truth, and in his perception of it, thus is in the man's love for and faith in Divine truth.63.
The reason why there is association with the angels of heaven by means of the sense of the letter is that the spiritual sense and celestial sense are in it, and the angels are in these senses, the angels of the spiritual kingdom being in the Word's spiritual sense, and those of the celestial kingdom in its celestial sense. These senses are evolved from the Word's natural sense which is the sense of the letter while a true man is in it. The evolution is instantaneous; consequently so is the association.64.
It has been made plain to me by much experience that the spiritual angels are in the spiritual sense of the Word, and the celestial angels in its celestial sense. While reading the Word in its sense of the letter it has been given me to perceive that communication was effected with the heavens, now with this society of them, now with that, and that what I understood according to the natural sense, the spiritual angels understood according to the spiritual sense, and the celestial angels according to the celestial sense, and this in an instant. As I have perceived this communication many thousands of times, there remains with me no doubt about it. Moreover there are spirits beneath the heavens who abuse this communication; they recite some sayings from the sense of the letter, and immediately observe and take note of the society with which communication is effected. This I have frequently seen and heard. From these things it has been given me to know by actual experience that the Word in respect to its sense of the letter is the Divine medium of conjunction with the Lord and with heaven. (Concerning this conjunction by the Word see also what is said in Heaven and Hell, n. 303-310.)65.
The way in which the evolution of these senses is effected shall also be told in a few words. But for the understanding of this it will be necessary to recall what has been said above about successive order and simultaneous order, namely, that in successive order what is celestial, what is spiritual, and what is natural follow one after another, from highest things in heaven down to ultimate things in the world, and that the same things are in the ultimate (which is natural) in simultaneous order, one next another from the inmost things to the outermost ones, and that in like manner there are successive senses of the Word, celestial and spiritual, simultaneously in the natural sense. When these things are comprehended, the way in which the two senses, celestial and spiritual, are evolved from the natural sense while a man is reading the Word may in some measure be unfolded before the understanding; for a spiritual angel then calls forth what is spiritual, and a celestial angel what is celestial, nor can they do otherwise, because such things are homogeneous and in accordance with their nature and essence.66.
But this may be illustrated in the first place by comparisons drawn from the three kingdoms of nature: animal, vegetable, and mineral. From the animal kingdom: When the food becomes chyle, the blood vessels extract and call forth from it their blood, the nervous fibers their fluid, and the substances that are the origins of the fibers their animal spirit. From the vegetable kingdom: The tree, with its trunk, branches, leaves, and fruit, stands upon its root, and by means of its root it extracts and calls forth from the ground a grosser sap for the trunk, branches, and leaves, a purer for the pulp of the fruit, and the purest for the seeds within the fruit. From the mineral kingdom: In some places in the bowels of the earth there are minerals impregnated with gold, silver, and iron, and each of these metals draws its own element from the exhalations stored up in the earth.67.
We may now illustrate by an example how from the natural sense in which is the Word with men, the spiritual angels draw forth their own sense, and the celestial angels theirs. Take as an example five commandments of the Decalogue: Honor thy father and thy mother. By "father and mother" a man understands his father and mother on earth, and all who stand in their place, and by to "honor" he understands to hold in honor and obey them. But a spiritual angel understands the Lord by "father," and the church by "mother," and by to "honor" he understands to love. And a celestial angel understands the Lord's Divine love by "father," and His Divine wisdom by "mother," and by to "honor" to do what is good from him.  Thou shalt not steal. By to "steal" a man understands to steal, defraud, or under any pretext take from his neighbor his goods. A spiritual angel understands to deprive others of their truths of faith and goods of charity by means of falsities and evils. And a celestial angel understands to attribute to himself what is the Lord's, and to claim for himself His righteousness and merit.  Thou shalt not commit adultery. By "committing adultery" a man understands to commit adultery and fornication, to do obscene things, speak lascivious words, and harbor filthy thoughts. A spiritual angel understands to adulterate the goods of the Word, and falsify its truths. And a celestial angel understands to deny the Lord's Divinity and to profane the Word.  Thou shalt not kill. By "killing," a man understands also bearing hatred, and desiring revenge even to the death. A spiritual angel understands to act as a devil and destroy men's souls. And a celestial angel understands to bear hatred against the Lord, and against what is His.  Thou shalt not bear false witness. By "bearing false witness" a man understands also to lie and defame. A spiritual angel understands to say and persuade that what is false is true and what is evil good, and the reverse. And a celestial angel understands to blaspheme the Lord and the Word.  From these examples it may be seen how the spiritual and celestial of the Word are evolved and drawn out from the natural sense in which they are. Wonderful to say, the angels draw out their senses without knowing what the man is thinking about, and yet the thoughts of the angels and of the men make a one by means of correspondences, like end, cause, and effect. Moreover ends actually are in the celestial kingdom, causes in the spiritual kingdom, and effects in the natural kingdom. This conjunction by means of correspondences is such from creation. This then is the source of man's association with angels by means of the Word.68.
Another reason why association of man with angels exists by means of the natural or literal sense of the Word is that in every man from creation there are three degrees of life - celestial, spiritual, and natural - but so long as he is in this world he is in the natural, and is at the same time in the spiritual insofar as he is in genuine truths, and in the celestial insofar as he is in a life according to them; but still he does not come into the spiritual or celestial itself until after death. But of this more elsewhere.69.
From all this it is evident that in the Word alone (through the fact that it is conjunction with the Lord and association with the angels) there is spirit and life, as the Lord teaches: The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit and they are life (John 6:63). The water that I shall give you shall be in you a fountain of water springing up into eternal life (John 4:14). Man doth not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God (Matt. 4:4). Labor for the meat that endureth unto eternal life, which the Son of man shall give unto you (John 6:27).70.
VII THE WORD IS IN ALL THE HEAVENS, AND IS THE SOURCE OF ANGELIC WISDOM Hitherto it has not been known that the Word is in the heavens, nor could it be made known so long as the church was ignorant that angels and spirits are men like the men in this world, and that they possess in every respect like things to those possessed by men, with the sole difference that they themselves are spiritual, and that all things they possess are from a spiritual origin; while men in this world are natural, and all things they possess are from a natural origin. So long as this fact was hidden it could not be known that the Word exists in the heavens also, and is read by angels there, and also by spirits who are beneath the heavens. But that this might not be forever hidden, it has been granted me to be in company with angels and spirits, to converse with them, see what exists with them, and afterwards relate many things that I have heard and seen. This has been done in Heaven and Hell, published in London in 1758; in which work it may be seen that angels and spirits are men, and that they possess in abundance all things that men possess in this world. That angels and spirits are men, may be seen in that work (n. 73-77, and 453-456). That they possess like things to those possessed by men in this world (n. 170-190); also that they have Divine worship, and preachings in places of worship (n. 221-227); that they have writings and also books (n. 258-264); and that they have the Word (n. 259).71.
As regards the Word in heaven, it is written in a spiritual style, which differs entirely from a natural style. The spiritual style consists solely of letters, each of which contains a meaning, and there are points above the letters which exalt the meaning. With the angels of the spiritual kingdom the letters resemble printed letters in our world; and with the angels of the celestial kingdom the letters (each of which also contains a complete meaning) resemble the ancient Hebrew letters, curved in various ways, and with marks above and within. Such being the style of their writing, there are no names of persons and places in their Word such as there are in ours, but instead of the names there are the things which they signify. Thus instead of Moses there is the historical Word, instead of Elijah, the prophetical Word; instead of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the Lord as to His Divinity and Divine Human; instead of Aaron, the priestly office; instead of David, the kingly office, each of the Lord; instead of the names of the twelve sons of Jacob, or of the tribes of Israel, various things of heaven and the church; and like things instead of the names of the Lord's twelve disciples; instead of Zion and Jerusalem, the church in respect to the Word and doctrine from the Word; instead of the land of Canaan, the church itself; instead of the cities therein on this side and beyond Jordan, various things of the church and of its doctrine; and so with all the other names. It is the same with the numbers; neither do these appear in the Word that is in heaven, but instead of them the things to which the numbers that are in our Word correspond. It is evident from these examples that the Word in heaven is a Word that corresponds to our Word, and thus that the two are a one, for correspondences make a one.72.
It is a wonderful thing that the Word in the heavens is so written that the simple understand it in simplicity, and the wise in wisdom, for there are many points and marks over the letters, which as has been said exalt the meaning, and to these the simple do not attend, nor are they even aware of them; whereas the wise pay attention to them, each one according to his wisdom, even to the highest wisdom. In every larger society of heaven, a copy of the Word, written by angels inspired by the Lord, is kept in its sanctuary, lest being elsewhere it should be altered in some point. In respect to the fact that the simple understand it in simplicity and the wise in wisdom, our Word is indeed like that in heaven, but this is effected in a different way.73.
The angels acknowledge that all their wisdom comes through the Word, for they are in light in proportion to their understanding of the Word. The light of heaven is Divine wisdom, which to their eyes is light. In the sanctuary where the copy of the Word is kept, there is a flaming and bright light that surpasses every degree of light in heaven that is outside of it. The cause is the same as above mentioned; it is that the Lord is in the Word.74.
The wisdom of the celestial angels surpasses that of the spiritual angels almost as much as this surpasses the wisdom of men, and the reason is that the celestial angels are in the good of love from the Lord, while the spiritual angels are in truths of wisdom from him, and wherever there is the good of love there resides at the same time wisdom; but where there are truths there resides no more of wisdom than there is good of love together with it. This is the reason why the Word in the celestial kingdom is written differently from that in the spiritual kingdom; for goods of love are expressed in the Word of the celestial kingdom, and the marks denote affections, whereas truths of wisdom are expressed in the Word of the spiritual kingdom, and the marks denote perceptions.75.
From what has been said may be inferred the nature of the wisdom that lies hidden in the Word that is in this world. In fact all angelic wisdom, which is unutterable, lies hidden in it, for it is the container of the same, and after death a man who is being made an angel by the Lord by means of the Word comes into that wisdom.76.
VIII THE CHURCH IS FROM THE WORD, AND IS SUCH AS IS ITS UNDERSTANDING OF THE WORD That the church is from the Word does not admit of doubt, for the Word is Divine truth itself (n. 1-4); the doctrine of the church is from the Word (n. 50-61) and through the Word there is conjunction with the Lord (n. 62-69). But doubt may arise as to whether the understanding of the Word is what makes the church, for there are those who believe that they are of the church because they have the Word, read it or hear it from a preacher, and know something of its sense of the letter, yet how this or that in the Word is to be understood they do not know, and some of them little care. It shall therefore be proved that it is not the Word that makes the church, but the understanding of it, and that such as is the understanding of the Word among those who are in the church, such is the church itself. The proof of this is as follows.77.
The Word is the Word according to the understanding of it in a man, that is, as it is understood. If it is not understood, the Word is indeed called the Word, but it is not the Word with the man. The Word is the truth according to the understanding of it, for it may not be the truth, because it may be falsified. The Word is spirit and life according to the understanding of it, for its letter if not understood is dead. And as a man has truth and life according to his understanding of the Word, so has he faith and love according thereto, for truth is of faith, and love is of life. Now as the church exists by means of faith and love, and according to them, it follows that the church is the church through the understanding of the Word and according thereto; a noble church if in genuine truths, an ignoble church if not in genuine truths, and a destroyed church if in falsified truths.78.
Further, it is through the Word that the Lord is present with a man and is conjoined with him, for the Lord is the Word, and as it were speaks with the man in it. The Lord is also Divine truth itself, as likewise is the Word. From this it is evident that the Lord is present with a man and is at the same time conjoined with him, according to his understanding of the Word, for according to this the man has truth and the derivative faith, and also love and the derivative life. The Lord is indeed present with a man through the reading of the Word, but he is conjoined with him through the understanding of truth from the Word, and according thereto; and in proportion as the Lord has been conjoined with a man, in the same proportion the church is in him. The church is within man; the church that is outside of him is the church with a number of men who have the church within them. This is meant by the Lord's words to the Pharisees who asked when the kingdom of God would come: The kingdom of God is within you (Luke 17:21). Here the "kingdom of God" means the Lord, and from him, the church.79.
In many places in the Prophets where the church is treated of, the understanding of the Word is treated of, and it is taught that there is no church except where the Word is rightly understood, and that such as is the understanding of the Word with those in the church, such is the church. In many places also in the Prophets the church with the Israelitish and Jewish nation is described as being totally destroyed and annihilated through their falsification of the meaning or understanding of the Word, for naught but this destroys the church.  The understanding of the Word, both true and false, is described in the prophets by "Ephraim," especially in Hosea, for in the Word "Ephraim" signifies the understanding of the Word in the church. And as the understanding of the Word makes the church, Ephraim is called, A dear son, and a child of delights (Jer. 31:20); The firstborn (Jer. 31:9); The strength of Jehovah's head (Ps. 60:7; 108:8); Mighty (Zech. 10:7) Filled with the bow (Zech. 9:13); and the sons of Ephraim are called, Armed, and shooters with the bow (Ps. 78:9). The "bow" signifies doctrine from the Word fighting against falsities. Therefore also, Ephraim was passed over to Israel's right hand, and was blessed; and was also accepted instead of Reuben (Gen. 48:5, 11-15). And therefore, Ephraim, together with his brother Manasseh (under the name of Joseph their father), was exalted above all by Moses when he blessed the sons of Israel (Deut. 33:13-17).  The quality of the church when the understanding of the Word has been destroyed, is also described in the prophets by "Ephraim," especially in Hosea, as is evident from the following passages: Israel and Ephraim shall stagger; Ephraim shall be in the solitude; Ephraim is oppressed and shattered in judgment. I will be unto Ephraim as a lion; I will tear and go away; I will carry off, and there shall be none to deliver (Hos. 5:5, 9, 11-14). O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? For thy holiness is as a cloud of the dawn, and like the dew that falleth in the morning, it goeth away (Hos. 6:4) They shall not dwell in the land of Jehovah; but Ephraim shall return to Egypt, and shall eat in Assyria that which is unclean (Hos. 9:3).  The "land of Jehovah" is the church; "Egypt" is the memory-knowledge [scientificum] of the natural man; "Assyria" is the derivative reasoning: by these two the Word is falsified in respect to the understanding of it, and therefore it is said that "Ephraim shall return to Egypt, and shall eat in Assyria that which is unclean."  Again: Ephraim feedeth on wind, and followeth after the east wind; every day he multiplieth lying and wasteness; he maketh a covenant with Assyria, and oil is carried down into Egypt (Hos. 12:1). To "feed on wind," to "follow after the east wind," and to "multiply lying and wasteness" is to falsify truths, and thus destroy the church.  The like is signified also by the "whoredom" of Ephraim (for "whoredom" signifies the falsification of the understanding of the Word, that is, of its genuine truth) in the following passages: I know Ephraim, that he hath altogether committed whoredom, and Israel is defiled (Hos. 5:3). In the house of Israel I have seen a foul thing; there Ephraim hath committed whoredom, and Israel hath been defiled (Hos. 6:10). "Israel" is the church itself, and "Ephraim" is the understanding of the Word, from and according to which is the church, and therefore it is said "Ephraim hath committed whoredom, and Israel hath been defiled."  As the church among the Jews had been utterly destroyed through falsifications of the Word, it is said of Ephraim, I will give thee up, Ephraim, I will deliver thee over, Israel, as Admah, and I will set thee as Zeboim (Hos. 11:8). Now as the prophet Hosea, from the first chapter to the last, treats of the falsification of the Word, and of the destruction of the church thereby; and as the falsification of truth is there signified by "whoredom," therefore in order that he might represent this state of the church, that prophet was commanded to take unto himself a harlot for a woman, and of her to beget sons (chapter 1); and, a second time, to take a woman who was an adulteress (chapter 3).  These passages have been adduced in order that it may be known and confirmed from the Word that such as is the understanding of the Word in the church, such is the church: excellent and precious if this understanding is from genuine truths of the Word, but ruined and even foul if it is from truths falsified. In confirmation of the truth that Ephraim signifies the understanding of the Word, and in the opposite sense the same falsified, and that the destruction of the church comes from this, the other passages in which Ephraim is treated of may be consulted, As Hos. 4:17-18; 7:1, 11; 8:9, 11; 9:11-13, 16; 10:11; 11:3; 12:1, 8, 14; 13:1, 12; Isa. 17:3; 28:1; Jer. 4:15; 31:6, 18; 50:19; Ezek. 37:16; 48:5; Obad. 19; Zech. 9:10.80.
IX THERE IS A MARRIAGE OF THE LORD AND THE CHURCH AND A DERIVATIVE MARRIAGE OF GOOD AND TRUTH IN EACH AND EVERY THING OF THE WORD Hitherto this has not been seen, nor could it be seen, because the spiritual sense of the Word has not until now been disclosed, and it cannot be seen except by means of this sense. For in the Word two senses, the spiritual and the celestial, lie hidden within the sense of the letter. In the spiritual sense the things in the Word refer especially to the church, and in the celestial sense, especially to the Lord. In the spiritual sense they also refer to Divine truth, and in the celestial to Divine good. From this comes the marriage in question in the sense of the letter of the Word. But this appears to those only who know from the Word's spiritual and celestial sense the significations of the words and names, for some of these are predicated of good and some of truth, and some include both, so that without this knowledge the marriage that exists in each and every thing of the Word could not be seen. This is the reason why this secret has not been disclosed before.81.
As there is such a marriage in each and every thing of the Word, there frequently occur in it two expressions that appear like repetitions of the same thing. They however are not repetitions, for one of them has reference to good and the other to truth, and both taken together effect a conjunction of good and truth, and thus form one thing. From this too comes the Divinity of the Word and its holiness, for in every Divine work good is conjoined with truth and truth with good.82.
It is said that in each and every thing of the Word there is a marriage of the Lord and the church and a derivative marriage of good and truth, because wherever there is a marriage of the Lord and the church there is also a marriage of good and truth, for the latter is from the former. For when the church or man of the church is in truths, the Lord inflows into his truths with good, and vivifies them. Or what is the same, when through truths the church or man of the church is in intelligence, the Lord inflows into his intelligence through the good of love and of charity, and thus pours life into it.83.
With every man there are two faculties of life, called Understanding and Will. The understanding is the receptacle of truth and the derivative wisdom, and the will is the receptacle of good and the derivative love. For a man to be a man of the church these two must make a one, and this they do when the man forms his understanding from genuine truths, which to all appearance is done as by himself; and when his will is infilled with the good of love, which is done by the Lord. From this the man has a life of truth and a life of good, a life of truth in the understanding from the will, and a life of good in the will through the understanding. This is the marriage of truth and good in a man, and also the marriage of the Lord and the church in him. But concerning this reciprocal conjunction called a marriage, more will be seen in Angelic Wisdom concerning Divine Providence, Divine Love and Wisdom, and Doctrine of Life.84.
Readers of the Word who pay attention to the matter can see that there are pairs of expressions in it that appear like repetitions of the same thing, such as "brother" [and "companion," "poor"] and "needy," "waste" and "solitude," "vacuity" and "emptiness," "foe" and "enemy," "sin" and "iniquity," "anger" and "wrath," "nation" and "people," "joy" and "gladness," "mourning" and "weeping," "righteousness" and "judgment," etc. These expressions appear synonymous but are not so, for "brother," "poor," "waste," ["vacuity,"] "foe," "sin," "anger," "nation," "joy," "mourning," and "righteousness" are predicated of good, and in the opposite sense of evil; whereas "companion," "needy," "solitude," "emptiness," "enemy," "iniquity," "wrath," "people," "gladness," "weeping," and "judgment" are predicated of truth, and in the opposite sense of falsity. And yet it seems to a reader who is not acquainted with this secret, that "poor" and "needy," "waste" and "solitude," "vacuity" and " emptiness," "foe" and "enemy," are one and the same thing; and in like manner "sin" and "iniquity," "anger" and "wrath," "nation" and "people," "joy" and "gladness," "mourning" and "weeping," "righteousness" and "judgment"; and yet they are not one thing, but become one thing by conjunction. Many things are also joined together in the Word, such as "fire" and "flame," "gold" and "silver," "brass" and "iron," "wood" and "stone," "bread" and "water," "bread" and "wine," "bright crimson" and "fine linen," etc., which is done because "fire," "gold," "brass," "wood," "bread," and "bright crimson" signify good; and "flame," "silver," "iron," "stone," "water," "wine," and "fine-linen" signify truth. And in the same way it is said that men are to "love God with all the heart and with all the soul"; and that God will "create in a man a new heart and a new spirit"; for "heart" is predicated of the good of love, and "soul" of the truth from that good. There are also words that are used alone, or without a mate, because they partake of both good and truth. But these and many other things are not apparent except to the angels, and to those also who while in the natural sense are also in the spiritual sense.85.
That such pairs of expressions which appear like repetitions of the same thing, run through the Word, would be too prolix a matter to show from the Word, for whole sheets could be filled with it; but to remove all doubt about it I will quote passages in which occur the expressions "righteousness" (or "justice") and "judgment," "nation" and "people," and "joy" and "gladness." First, "righteousness" and "judgment:" The city was full of judgment, righteousness lodged in her (Isa. 1:21). Zion shall be redeemed in judgment, and they that return of her in righteousness (Isa. 1:27). Jehovah Zebaoth shall be exalted in judgment, and God the Holy One shall be sanctified in righteousness (Isa. 5:16). He shall sit upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to establish it in judgment and in righteousness (Isa. 9:7). Jehovah shall be exalted, for He dwelleth on high; He hath filled Zion with judgment and righteousness (Isa. 33:5). Thus saith Jehovah, Keep ye judgment, and do righteousness, for My salvation is near, that My righteousness may be revealed (Isa. 56:1). As a nation that did righteousness, and forsook not the judgment of their God; they ask of Me the judgments of righteousness (Isa. 58:2). Swear by the living Jehovah in judgment and in righteousness (Jer. 4:2). Let him that glorieth glory in this, that Jehovah doeth judgment and righteousness in the earth (Jer. 9:24). Do ye judgment and righteousness. Woe unto him that buildeth his house without righteousness, and his chambers without judgment. Did not thy father do judgment and righteousness? And then it was well with him (Jer. 22:3, 13, 15). I will raise unto David a righteous offshoot, and He shall reign as king, and shall do judgment and justice in the land (Jer. 23:5; 33:15). If a man be just, and do judgment and righteousness (Ezek. 18:5). If the wicked turn from his sin, and do judgment and righteousness, it shall not be mentioned against him; he hath done judgment and righteousness; he shall surely live (Ezek. 33:14, 16, 19). I will betroth thee unto Me to eternity; in righteousness and in judgment; and in mercy and in compassions (Hos. 2:19). Let judgment flow as water, and righteousness as a mighty torrent (Amos. 5:24). Ye have turned judgment into gall, and the fruit of righteousness into wormwood (Amos 6:12). Jehovah will plead my cause, and execute judgment for me; He will bring me forth into the light, and I shall behold His righteousness (Micah 7:9). O Jehovah, Thy righteousness is like the mountains of God; Thy judgments are a great abyss (Ps. 36:6). Jehovah will bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgment as the noonday (Ps. 37:6). Jehovah shall judge thy people in righteousness, and thy miserable in judgment (Ps. 72:2). Righteousness and judgment are the support of Thy throne (89:14). When I shall have learned the judgments of Thy righteousness. Seven times a day do I praise Thee, because of the judgments of Thy righteousness (Ps. 119:7, 164). God executeth the justice of Jehovah, and His judgment with Israel (Deut. 33:21). The spirit of truth shall convict the world in respect of righteousness, and of judgment (John 16:8-10). (And in other places.) The reason "judgment" and "righteousness" are mentioned so frequently is that "judgment" is predicated of truths, and "righteousness" of good, and therefore to "do judgment and righteousness" means to act from truth and from good. The reason "judgment" is predicated of truth, and "righteousness" of good is that the Lord's government in the spiritual kingdom is called "judgment," and in the celestial kingdom "righteousness" (on which subject see Heaven and Hell, n. 214-215). As "judgment" is predicated of truth, in some passages we read: Truth and righteousness (as in Isa. 11:5; Ps. 85:11; and elsewhere).86.
That repetitions of the same thing occur in the Word on account of the marriage of good and truth, may be seen quite clearly from passages where "nations" and "peoples" are mentioned: Woe to the sinful nation, to a people laden with iniquity (Isa. 1:4). The peoples that walk in darkness have seen a great light: Thou hast multiplied the nation (Isa. 9:2-3). Asshur, the rod of Mine anger, I will send him against a hypocritical nation, and against the people of My wrath will I give him a charge (Isa. 10:5-6). It shall come to pass in that day, that the root of Jesse, which standeth for an ensign of the peoples, shall the nations seek (Isa. 11:10). Jehovah that smiteth the peoples with an incurable stroke, that ruleth the nations with anger (Isa. 14:6). In that day shall a present be brought unto Jehovah of armies of a people scattered and peeled, and a nation meted out and trodden down (Isa. 18:7). The mighty people shall honor Thee, the city of the powerful nations shall fear Thee (Isa. 25:3). Jehovah will swallow up the covering over all peoples, and the veil over all nations (Isa. 25:7). Come near ye nations, and hearken ye peoples (Isa. 34:1). I have called thee for a covenant for the people, for a light of the nations (Isa. 42:6). Let all the nations be gathered together, and let the peoples assemble (Isa. 43:9). Behold, I will lift up My hand toward the nations, and My standard toward the peoples (Isa. 49:22). I have given Him for a witness to the peoples, a prince and a lawgiver to the nations (Isa. 55:4-5). Behold, a people cometh from the land of the north; and a great nation from the sides of the earth (Jer. 6:22). I will not make thee hear the calumny of the nations any more, neither shalt thou bear the reproach of the peoples any more (Ezek. 36:15). All peoples and nations shall worship Him (Dan 7:14). Let not the nations make a byword of them, and say among the peoples, Where is their God? (Joel 2:17). The remnant of My people shall spoil them, and the residue of My nation shall inherit them (Zeph. 2:9). Many peoples and numerous nations shall come to seek Jehovah Zebaoth in Jerusalem (Zech. 8:22). Mine eyes have seen Thy salvation, which Thou hast prepared before the face of all peoples, a light for revelation to the nations (Luke 2:30-32). Thou hast redeemed us by Thy blood out of every people and nation (Rev. 5:9). Thou must prophesy again concerning peoples and nations (Rev. 10:11). Thou shalt set me for a head of the nations: a people whom I have not known shall serve me (Ps. 18:43). Jehovah bringeth the counsel of the nations to nought, He overturneth the thoughts of the peoples (Ps. 33:10). Thou makest us a byword among the nations, a shaking of the head among the peoples (Ps. 44:14). Jehovah shall subdue the peoples under us, and the nations under our feet. Jehovah hath reigned over the nations; the willing ones of the peoples are gathered together (Ps. 47:3, 8-9). Let the people confess unto Thee; let the nations be glad and shout for joy; for Thou shalt judge the peoples with equity, and lead the nations upon earth (Ps. 67:3-4). Remember me, O Jehovah, in the good pleasure of Thy people; that I may rejoice in the joy of Thy nations (Ps. 106:4-5). The reason "nations" and "peoples" are mentioned together is that "nations" mean those in good, and in the opposite sense in evil; and "peoples" those in truths, and in the opposite sense in falsities. For this reason those of the Lord's spiritual kingdom are called "peoples," and those of his celestial kingdom "nations"; for in the spiritual kingdom all are in truths and consequently in wisdom, and in the celestial kingdom all are in good and consequently in love.87.
The same rule holds good for other words; for example, where "joy" is mentioned, so is "gladness:" Behold joy and gladness, slaying the ox (Isa. 22:13). They shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away (Isa. 35:10; 51:11). Gladness and joy are cut off from the house of our God (Joel 1:16). There shall be taken away the voice of joy, and the voice of gladness (Jer. 7:34; 25:10). The fast of the tenth [month] shall be to the house of Judah for joy and gladness (Zech. 8:19). That we may rejoice all our days, make Thou us glad (Ps. 90:14-15). Be ye glad in Jerusalem, and rejoice in her (Isa. 66:10). Rejoice and be glad, O daughter of Edom (Lam. 4:21). The heavens shall be glad, and the earth shall rejoice (Ps. 96:11). Make me to hear joy and gladness (Ps. 51:8). Joy and gladness shall be found in Zion, confession and the voice of singing (Isa. 51:3). There shall be gladness, and many shall rejoice at His birth (Luke 1:14). I will cause to cease the voice of joy and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride (Jer. 7:34; 16:9; 25:10). There shall be heard in this place the voice of joy and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride (Jer. 33:10-11). The reason why both "joy" and "gladness" are mentioned is that "joy" is of good and "gladness" of truth, or "joy" is of love and "gladness" of wisdom. For joy is of the heart and gladness of the soul, or joy is of the will and gladness of the understanding. That there is a marriage of the Lord and the church in these expressions also is evident from its being said, The voice of joy and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride (Jer. 7:34; 16:9; 25:10; 33:10-11). The Lord is the "bridegroom," and the church is the "bride." That the Lord is the bridegroom, see Matt. 9:15; Mark 2:19-20; Luke 5:34-35; And that the church is the bride, Rev. 21:2, 9; 22:17. And therefore John the Baptist said of Jesus: He that hath the bride is the bridegroom (John 3:29).88.
On account of the marriage of the Lord with the church, or what is the same, on account of the marriage of Divine good and Divine truth in each and every thing of the Word, "Jehovah" and "God," and also "Jehovah" and the "Holy One of Israel," are mentioned in very many places as if they were two although they are one, for by "Jehovah" is meant the Lord as to Divine good, and by "God" and the "Holy One of Israel" the Lord as to Divine truth. That "Jehovah" and "God," and also "Jehovah" and the "Holy One of Israel," are mentioned in very many places in the Word although one is meant, who is the Lord, may be seen in Doctrine of the Lord (n. 34, 38, 46).89.
As there is the marriage of the Lord and the church in all things of the Word and in every single particular of it, it is evident that all things of the Word and also every particular of it treat of the Lord, as we set out to show in Doctrine of the Lord (n. 1-7). The church (which likewise is treated of) is also the Lord; for the Lord teaches that the man of the church is in Him, and He in the man (John 6:56; 14:20, 21; 15:5, 7).90.
As the subject here treated of is the Divinity and holiness of the Word, to what has already been said we may add something worthy of mention. A small piece of paper marked with Hebrew letters, but written as the ancients wrote them, was once sent me from heaven. In those times some of the letters that now are partly formed with straight lines were curved, and had little horns that turned upward. The angels who were then with me said that they themselves discerned complete meanings from the very letters, and that they knew them especially from the curvings of the lines and of the points of each letter. And they explained what the letters meant when taken each by itself and what when taken together; and said that the H that was added to the names of Abram and Sarai means what is infinite and eternal. They also explained in my presence from the letters or syllables alone the meaning of the Word in Psalm 32:2, showing that the sum of their meaning is that the Lord is merciful even to those who do evil.  They informed me that the writing in the third heaven consists of curved letters that are bent in various ways, and that each letter possesses a complete meaning; that the vowels there indicate a sound that corresponds to the affection, and that in that heaven they cannot utter the vowels i and e, but instead of them y and eu, but that they do use the vowels a, o, and u, because they give a full sound. 90-1 Further: that they do not pronounce any consonants as hard, but soft, and that it is from this that certain Hebrew letters have a dot in the center as a sign that they are to be pronounced as [hard, and are without this dot when] soft; and they said that hardness in pronouncing the letters is in use in the spiritual heaven because there they are in truths, and truth admits of what is hard, but not good, in which are the angels of the celestial kingdom or third heaven. They also said that these angels possess the Word written with curved letters that have significant points and little horns. This shows what is meant by the words of the Lord: One jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law till all be fulfilled (Matt. 5:18); It is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for one tittle of the law to fail (Luke 16:17).91.
X IT IS POSSIBLE FOR HERESIES TO BE DRAWN FROM THE SENSE OF THE LETTER OF THE WORD, BUT IT IS HARMFUL TO CONFIRM THEM It has been shown above that the Word cannot be understood without doctrine, and that doctrine is like a lamp that enables genuine truths to be seen, the reason of which is that the Word has been written entirely by correspondences, and consequently many things in it are appearances of truth and not naked truths; and many things also have been written in adaptation to the apprehension of the natural and even of the sensuous man, yet so that the simple may understand it in simplicity, the intelligent in intelligence, and the wise in wisdom. The result is that the appearances of truth in the Word, which are truths clothed, may be caught at as naked truths, and when they are confirmed they become falsities. But this is done by those who believe themselves wise above others, although they are not wise, for being wise consists in seeing whether a thing is true before it is confirmed, and not in confirming whatever one pleases. This last is done by those who excel in a genius for confirming and are in the conceit of self-intelligence, but the former is done by those who love truths and are affected by them because they are truths, and who make them uses of the life, for these persons are enlightened by the Lord, and see truths by the light of the truths; whereas the others are enlightened by themselves and see falsities by the light of the falsities.92.
That appearances of truth, which are truths clothed, may be caught at out of the Word as naked truths, and that when confirmed they become falsities is evident from the many heresies there have been and still are in Christendom. The heresies themselves do not condemn men, but an evil life does, as also do the confirmations from the Word, and from reasonings from the natural man of the falsities that are in the heresy. For everyone is born into the religion of his parents is initiated into it from his infancy, and afterwards holds to it, being unable to withdraw himself from its falsities through being engaged with his business in the world. But to live in evil, and to confirm falsities even to the destruction of genuine truth, is what condemns. For he who remains in his own religion, and believes in God, or if in Christendom, in the Lord, regarding the Word as holy, and from a religious principle living according to the ten commandments, does not swear allegiance to falsities, and therefore as soon as he hears truths and perceives them in his own way, can embrace them and so be led away from falsities; but not so the man who has confirmed the falsities of his religion, for confirmed falsity remains and cannot be rooted out. For after confirmation a falsity becomes as if the man had sworn to the truth of it, especially if it chimes in with his own self-love [amor proprii], and the derivative conceit of his own wisdom.93.
I have conversed with some in the spiritual world who had lived many ages ago, and had confirmed themselves in the falsities of their religion, and I found that they still remained steadfast in the same. I have also conversed there with some who had been of the same religion as they, and had thought as they did, but had not confirmed themselves in its falsities, and I found that after being instructed by angels these had rejected the falsities and had imbibed truths, and that these were saved, but not the others. After death every man is instructed by angels, and those who see truths, and from truths falsities, are received. For the power to see truths spiritually is then given everyone, and those see them who have not confirmed themselves in falsities, but those who have confirmed themselves do not want to see truths, and if they do see them they turn their backs on them, and then either ridicule or falsify them.94.
Let us illustrate this by an example. In many places in the Word, anger, wrath, and vengeance are attributed to the Lord, and it is also said that He punishes, that He casts into hell, that He tempts, and many other such things. He who believes all this in simplicity, and on that account fears God and takes care not to sin against Him, is not condemned for that simple belief. But the man who confirms himself in these ideas to such a degree as to believe that anger, wrath, revenge, thus things that are of evil, exist in the Lord, and that from anger, wrath, and revenge He punishes a man and casts him into hell, is condemned, because he has destroyed the genuine truth that the Lord is love itself, mercy itself, and good itself, and that one who is these cannot be angry, wrathful, and revengeful. These things are attributed to the Lord because such is the appearance. So with many other things.95.
That many things in the sense of the letter are apparent truths, having genuine truths hidden within them, and that it is not hurtful to think and speak in accordance with such truths, but that it is hurtful to confirm them to such a degree as to destroy the genuine truth hidden within, may be illustrated by an example in nature, which is presented because what is natural teaches and convinces more clearly than what is spiritual.  To the eye the sun appears to revolve round the earth daily and also annually, and therefore in the Word the sun is said to rise and set, thus make morning, noon, evening, and night, and also making the seasons of spring, summer, autumn, and winter, and thus days and years; when yet the sun stands motionless, for it is an ocean of fire, and it is the earth that revolves daily, and is carried round the sun annually. The man who in simplicity and ignorance supposes that the sun is carried round the earth, does not destroy the natural truth that the earth daily rotates on its axis, and is annually carried along the ecliptic. But the man who by the Word and by reasonings from the natural man confirms as real the apparent motion and course of the sun, does invalidate the truth and does destroy it.  That the sun moves is an apparent truth; that it does not move is a genuine truth. Everyone may speak in accordance with the apparent truth, and does so speak, but to think in accordance with it from confirmation blunts and darkens the rational understanding. It is the same with respect to the stars in the sidereal heavens. The apparent truth is that they too, like the sun, are carried round the earth once a day, and it is therefore said of the stars also that they rise and set. But the genuine truth is that the stars are fixed, and that their heavens stand motionless. Still, everyone may speak in accordance with the appearance.96.
The reason why it is hurtful to confirm the apparent truth of the Word to the point of destroying the genuine truth that lies hidden within, is that each and all things of the sense of the letter of the Word communicate with heaven, and open it, as before shown (n. 62-69). So that when a man applies this sense to confirm loves of the world that are contrary to loves of heaven, the internal of the Word is made false, and the result is that when its external of the sense of the letter, and which now has a false internal, communicates with heaven, heaven is closed, for the angels, who are in the internal of the Word, reject that external of it. Thus it is evident that a false internal, or truth falsified, takes away communication with heaven and closes heaven. This is why it is hurtful to confirm any heretical falsity. 96a. The Word is like a garden, a heavenly paradise, that contains delicacies and delights of every kind, delicacies in its fruits and delights in its flowers; and in the midst of the garden trees of life with fountains of living water near them, while forest trees surround it. The man who from doctrine is in Divine truths is at its center where the trees of life are, and is in the actual enjoyment of its delicacies and delights; whereas the man who is in truths not from doctrine, but from the sense of the letter only, is at the outskirts, and sees nothing but the forest vegetation. And one who is in the doctrine of a false religion, and who has confirmed himself in its falsity, is not even in the forest, but is out beyond it in a sandy plain where there is not even grass. That such are their several states after death will be shown in its proper place.97.
Be it known moreover that the literal sense of the Word is a guard to the genuine truths that lie hidden within. It is a guard in this respect, that it can be turned this way or that, and explained according to the way it is taken, yet without injury or violence to its internal. It does no harm for the sense of the letter to be understood in one way by one person and in a different way by another; but it does harm for the Divine truths that lie hidden within to be perverted, because this inflicts violence on the Word. The sense of the letter is a guard against this, and the guard is effectual in the case of those who are in falsities from their religion, but do not confirm those falsities, for these persons do the Word no violence.  This guard is signified by cherubs, and in the Word is described by them. This is signified by the cherubs that were stationed at the entrance of the garden of Eden after Adam and his wife had been cast out, of which we read as follows: When Jehovah God had driven out the man, He made to dwell at the east of the garden of Eden the cherubim, and the flame of a sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life (Gen. 3:24). The "cherubim" signify a guard; the "way of the tree of life" signifies the access to the Lord which men have by means of the Word; the "flame of a sword that turned every way" signifies Divine truth in ultimates, this being like the Word in the sense of the letter, which can be so turned.  The same is meant by The cherubs of gold that were placed upon the two ends of the mercy seat that was upon the ark in the Tabernacle (Exod. 25:18-21). As this was signified by cherubs, The Lord spoke with Moses from between them (Exod. 25:22; 37:9; Num. 7:89). That the Lord does not speak to man except in what is full, and that the Word in the sense of the letter is Divine truth in fullness, may be seen above (n. 37-49). So therefore did the Lord speak to Moses from between the cherubs. In nowise different was the signification of The cherubs on the curtains of the Tabernacle, and on the veil (Exod. 26:1, 31), for the curtains and veils of the Tabernacle represented the ultimate things of heaven and the church, and therefore of the Word, as may be seen above (n. 46). Nor in anywise different was the signification of The cherubs in the midst of the temple in Jerusalem (1 Kings 6:23-28). The cherubs carved on the walls and doors of the temple (1 Kings 6:29, 32, 35). Or the cherubs in the new temple (Ezek. 41:18-20); as also may be seen above (n. 47).  As cherubs signified a guard that the Lord, heaven, and Divine truth such as is within the Word be not approached immediately, but mediately through ultimate things, it is said of the king of Tyre, Thou sealest up the measure, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty; thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering; thou, O cherub, art the outspreading of that which covereth; I have destroyed thee, O covering cherub, in the midst of the stones of fire (Ezek. 28:12-14, 16). "Tyre" signifies the church in respect to the knowledges of truth and good, and therefore its "king" signifies the Word, in which and from which are these knowledges. It is evident that the Word in its ultimate, which is the sense of the letter, is here signified by that king, and also that a guard is signified by a "cherub," for it is said, "thou sealest up the measure; every precious stone was thy covering"; and "thou, O cherub, art the outspreading of that which covereth"; and also "O covering cherub." That the "precious stones" mentioned in this passage mean truths of the literal sense of the Word may be seen above (n. 45). As "cherubs" signify what is ultimate of Divine truth as a guard, it is said in David: Jehovah bowed the heavens also and came down; and He rode upon a cherub (Ps. 18:9-10). O Shepherd of Israel, Thou that sittest upon the cherubim, shine forth (Ps. 80:1). Jehovah sitteth upon the cherubim (Ps. 99:1). To "ride upon cherubs" and to "sit upon them" means upon the ultimate sense of the Word.  Divine truth in the Word, and the quality of it, are described by the cherubs in the first, ninth, and tenth chapters of Ezekiel; but as no one can know what is signified by the several particulars of the description of them, except one to whom the spiritual sense has been opened, it has been disclosed to me what in brief is signified by all the things said about the cherubs in the first chapter of Ezekiel, which are as follows: The external Divine sphere of the Word is described (Ezek. 1:4); It is represented as a man (Ezek. 1:5); And conjoined with spiritual and celestial things (Ezek. 1:6); The natural of the Word, its quality (Ezek. 1:7); The spiritual and the celestial of the Word conjoined with its natural, their quality (Ezek. 1:8-9); The Divine love of the good and truth celestial, spiritual, and natural therein, severally and also together (Ezek. 1:10-11); They all look to the one thing (Ezek. 1:12); The sphere of the Word from the Lord's Divine good and Divine truth, from which the Word is alive (Ezek. 1:13-14); The doctrine of good and truth in the Word and from the Word (Ezek. 1:15-21); The Divine of the Lord above the Word and in it (Ezek. 1:22-23); And from it (Ezek. 1:24-25); The Lord is above the heavens (Ezek. 1:26); And Divine love and Divine wisdom are His (Ezek. 1:27-28). These summaries have been compared with the Word in heaven, and are in conformity with it.98.
XI THE LORD CAME INTO THE WORLD TO FULFILL ALL THINGS OF THE WORD, AND THEREBY TO BECOME DIVINE TRUTH OR THE WORD EVEN AS TO ULTIMATES That the Lord came into the world to fulfill all things of the Word, may be seen in Doctrine of the Lord (n. 8-11). And that he thereby became Divine truth or the Word even in ultimates is meant by these words in John: The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the Only-begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth (John 1:14). To "become flesh" is to become the Word in ultimates. What the Lord was as the Word in ultimates He showed His disciples when He was transfigured (Matt. 17:2, etc.; Mark 9:2, etc.; Luke 9:28, etc.); and it is there said that Moses and Elias were seen in glory. By "Moses and Elias" is meant the Word, as may be seen above (n. 48). The Lord, as the Word in ultimates, is also described by John in Rev. 1:13-16, where all things in the description of him signify ultimate things of Divine truth or of the Word. The Lord had indeed been the Word before, but only in first principles, for it is said: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and God was the Word; the same was in the beginning with God (John 1:1, 2); but when the Word became flesh, then the Lord became the Word in ultimates also. It is from this that He is called, The First and the Last (Rev. 1:8, 11, 17; 2:8; 21:6; 22:13).99.
The state of the church was completely changed by the Lord's becoming the Word in ultimates. All the churches that had existed before His advent were representative churches and could see Divine truth in the shade only; but after the Lord's coming into the world a church was instituted by Him that saw Divine truth in the light. The difference is like that between evening and morning, and the state of the church before his advent is also called "the evening," and that of the church after it "the morning." Before his coming into the world the Lord was indeed present with the men of the church, but mediately through heaven, whereas since His coming into the world He is present with them immediately, for in the world He put on the Divine Natural, in which He is present with men. The glorification of the Lord is the glorification of His Human that He assumed in the world, and the Lord's glorified Human is the Divine Natural.100.
Few understand how the Lord is the Word, for they think that the Lord may indeed enlighten and teach men by means of the Word without His being on that account called the Word. Be it known however that every man is his own love, and consequently his own good and his own truth. It is solely from this that a man is a man, and there is nothing else in him that is man. It is from the fact that a man is his own good and his own truth that angels and spirits are men, for all the good and truth that proceeds from the Lord is in its form a man. And as the Lord is Divine good and Divine truth itself, He is the Man, from whom every man is a man. That all Divine good and Divine truth is in its form a man may be seen in Heaven and Hell (n. 460), and more clearly in treatises that are to follow, on the subject of angelic wisdom.
61-1 The Latin word proprium is the term used in the original text that in this and other places has been rendered by the expression "own." The dictionary meaning of proprius, as an adjective, is "one's own," "proper," "belonging to one's self alone," "special," "particular," "peculiar." The neuter of this, which is the word proprium, when used as a noun means "possession," "property"; also "a peculiarity," "characteristic mark," "distinguishing sign," "characteristic." The English adjective "own" is defined by Webster to mean "belonging to," "belonging exclusively or especially to," "peculiar"; so that our word "own" is a very exact equivalent of proprius, and if we make it a noun by writing it "own," in order to answer to the Latin proprium, we effect a very close translation. [Translator]
90-1 These letters are to be pronounced as follows: i as in machine e like the a in baby y like the German - or the French - eu as in French, or like the German - a as in father In Swedish, o and u are sounded as follows: o either as oo in booth, or as o in note u somewhat like the ew in hew But the natural scale as set forth by Helmholtz and Donders would assign to o the sound of o in note, and to u the sound of oo in booth. [Translator]