(AC) - A Disclosure of the Hidden Treasures of Heaven Contained in the Holy Scripture or Word of the Lord, Together with Amazing Things Seen in the World of Spirits and in the Heaven of Angels

AC 10112

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10112. And a stranger shall not eat. That this signifies no appropriation of good with those who do not acknowledge the Lord, is evident from the signification of "a stranger," and "a foreigner," as being those who are outside the church (n. 2049, 2115, 7996); and those are said to be outside the church who do not acknowledge the Lord. Among the Israelitish nation those were said to be outside the church who did not acknowledge Jehovah as their God, and did not suffer themselves to be instructed in the rituals of the church. Those who acknowledged, and suffered themselves to be instructed, were called "sojourners," who had the same rights as the natives (n. 8007, 8013, 9196). And from the signification of "eating," as being the appropriation of good (n. 10109). The reason why there is no appropriation of good with those who do not acknowledge the Lord, is because to acknowledge one's God is the first of religion, and with Christians to acknowledge the Lord is the first of the church; for without acknowledgment there is no communication, consequently no faith, thus no love. Consequently the first of doctrine in the Christian Church is that without the Lord there is no salvation. For whatever a man calls true, and believes, and whatever he calls good, and loves, cannot be called true and good unless it is from the Divine, thus unless it is from the Lord; for it is also known that of himself a man cannot believe and do what is good; but that all truth and all good come from above. Thus it is very plain that those within the Church who do not acknowledge the Lord, cannot have faith, thus neither can they have love to God, nor consequently can they be saved. This was represented among the Israelitish nation by the injunction that they were to acknowledge Jehovah as their God, and their worship would be accepted and called holy, and they would then be sanctified, whatever was their quality as to the interiors; for the representatives were merely external, and with that nation it was sufficient to be in externals (see the places cited in n. 9320). Therefore those of them who did not acknowledge Jehovah, but another God, no matter how they sacrificed and worshiped in like manner as the rest, were nevertheless rejected from the church; as for instance those who worshiped Baal, and other gods. From this can be seen what is the lot of those in the other life who have been born within the church and yet at heart deny the Lord, whatever may be their quality as to moral life. By much experience also it has been given to know that they cannot be saved; which the Lord also teaches openly in John:
He that believeth in the Son hath eternal life, but he that believeth not the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abideth on him (John 3:36).
But with regard to the nations outside the church, those who have lived from their religion in some kind of charity toward their neighbor, and in some kind of love to God the Creator of the universe under a human form, are in the other life accepted by the Lord and are saved; for when instructed by angels these acknowledge the Lord, and believe in Him, and love Him (see n. 2589-2604).


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