(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 1042

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1042. I have set My bow in the cloud. This signifies the state of the regenerated spiritual man, which is like a rainbow. Anyone may wonder that the "bow in the cloud" or the rainbow, is taken in the Word for a token of the covenant, seeing that the rainbow is nothing but an appearance arising from the modification of the rays of sunlight in raindrops, and thus only something natural, unlike other signs of the covenant in the church, mentioned just above. And that the "bow in the cloud" represents regeneration, and signifies the state of the regenerated spiritual man, cannot be known to anyone unless it be given him to see and hence to know how the case is. Spiritual angels, who have all been regenerated men of the spiritual church, when presented to sight as such in the other life, appear with as it were a rainbow about the head. But the rainbows seen are in accordance with their state, and thus from them their quality is known in heaven and in the world of spirits. The reason that the appearance of a rainbow is seen is that their natural things corresponding to their spiritual present such an appearance. It is a modification of spiritual light from the Lord in their natural things. These angels are those who are said to be regenerated "of water and the spirit" but the celestial angels are said to be regenerated "with fire."
[2] As regards natural colors, the existence of color requires something both dark and light, or black and white. When rays of sunlight fall on this, according to the varied tempering of the dark and the light, or of the black and the white, from the modification of the inflowing rays of light, colors are produced, some of which partake more and some less of the dark and black, and some more and some less of the light and white; and hence is their diversity. To speak comparatively, it is the same in spiritual things. The darkness in this case is the Own of man's intellectual part, or falsity; and the blackness is the Own of his will part, or evil; which absorb and extinguish the rays of light. But the lightness and whiteness is the truth and good that the man supposes he does of himself, which reflects and throws back from itself the rays of light. The rays of light that fall upon these, and as it were modify them, are from the Lord, as from the Sun of wisdom and intelligence; for rays of spiritual light are no other and from no other source. It is because natural things correspond to spiritual that when what is about a regenerate spiritual man is presented to view in the other life, it appears like the bow in the cloud, this bow being the representation of his spiritual things in his natural things. There is in the regenerate spiritual man an Own of the understanding into which the Lord insinuates innocence, charity and mercy. According to the reception of these gifts by the man is the appearance of his rainbow when presented to view-beautiful in proportion to the degree in which the Own of his will is removed, subdued, and reduced to obedience.
[3] By the prophets also, when they were in the vision of God, there was seen a bow as in a cloud. As by Ezekiel:
Above the expanse that was over the head of the cherubs was the likeness of a throne, as the appearance of a sapphire stone; and upon the likeness of the throne was a likeness as the appearance of a Man upon it above; and I saw as the appearance of burning coal, as the appearance of fire within it round about, from the appearance of His loins and upward; and from the appearance of His loins and downward I saw as it were the appearance of fire, and there was brightness round about Him; as the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the day of rain, so was the appearance of the brightness round about; this was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of Jehovah (Ezek. 1:26-28).It must be evident to everyone that it is the Lord who was thus seen, and also that by Him was represented heaven, for He is heaven, that is, He is the all in all things of heaven. He is the "Man" here spoken of; the "throne" is heaven; the "burning coal as the appearance of fire from the loins and upward" is the celestial of love; the "brightness as of fire round about from the loins downward, as the bow in the cloud" is the celestial spiritual. Thus the celestial heaven, or the heaven of the celestial angels, is represented from the loins upward, and the spiritual heaven, or the heaven of the spiritual angels, is represented from the loins downward. For in the Grand Man what is below, from the loins down through the feet to the soles, signifies what is natural. Hence also it is evident that the natural things of man thus illuminated by spiritual light from the Lord, appear as the bow in the cloud. The like was seen also by John (Rev. 4:2-3; 10:1).


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