(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 10609

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10609. And no flock nor herd shall feed over against this mountain. That this signifies that neither could they be instructed about the interior and exterior good of the church, of worship, and of the Word, is evident from the signification of a "flock," as being interior good; and from the signification of a "herd," as being exterior good (see n. 5913, 6048, 8937); from the signification of "feeding," as being to be instructed (n. 5201, 6277); and from the signification of the "mountain," here Mount Horeb, as being the external of the church, of worship, and of the Word (n. 10543). From this it is evident that by these words is signified that neither could that nation be instructed about the interior and exterior good of the church, of worship, and of the Word, because they were outside of this external, and not in any manner within it. The reason why they could not be instructed about this, was that they were in the loves of self and of the world, and they who are in these loves cannot possibly know what celestial and spiritual good is, thus what is the good of the church, for this good is spiritual and celestial, because Divine. If this good were described to them, they would not at all apprehend it, because with them, the internal, where is the perception of this good, is closed.
[2] That such things are signified by the "flock and herd not feeding over against the mountain," may seem strange to those who keep the mind solely in the historical sense of the Word, and think no further than that these words signify something that appertains to the nation itself. Nor do those know anything further who are not acquainted with the internal sense of the Word, in which sense "flock and herd" do not signify flock and herd, but interior and exterior good with man. For what has the Word (which is Divine) in common with flock and herd, or with any beast? It has to do with men, their worship, love, and faith, thus with such things as make the church with men. In this is the Word Divine.
[3] That "flock and herd" signify such things, and that they do not signify a flock and a herd, is evident from the passages in the Word where they are mentioned; as in David:
Thou hast made Him to have dominion over the works of Thy hands, and Thou hast put all things under His feet; all flocks and herds, and also the beasts of the fields (Ps. 8:6, 7);
this is said of the Lord, and of His power over all things in heaven and on earth; by "flocks and herds" are signified the interior and exterior goods with men; and by "beasts," the affections with them. Otherwise of what use would it be to describe the Lord's power, which is Divine, over flocks, herds, and beasts? (That "beasts" denote the affections with man, may be seen at the places cited in n. 9280.)
[4] In Joel:
The day of Jehovah is near, as a devastation from Shaddai shall it come. The beast sighs, the droves of the herd are perplexed, because they have no pasture; yea, the droves of the flock are made desolate (Joel 1:15, 18).
Here also "beasts" denote the affections with man; "the droves of the herd and of the flock" denote interior and exterior goods. For the subject here treated of is the coming of the Lord, which is signified by "the day of Jehovah;" and of the church at that time as being vastated, that is, there being no longer any good of love or good of faith. These goods are what is signified by "beasts," "herds," and "flocks." Otherwise what could be meant by "the beast sighing, the droves of the herd being perplexed, and the droves of the flock being made desolate"? For what has this to do with the church? By the "pasture which they then had not" is signified that there is no truth by which they may be instructed.
[5] In Jeremiah:
Shame hath devoured the labor of our fathers from our youth; their flocks and their herds, and their sons and their daughters (Jer. 3:24).
Here also by "flocks" and "herds" are signified the goods of the church, which are the goods of love and of faith, interior and exterior.
[6] In Isaiah:
I will bring forth a seed out of Jacob, and out of Judah an inheritor of My mountains; then shall Sharon be a habitation of the flock, and the valley of Achor a couch of the herd, for My people that have sought Me (Isa. 65:9-10).

"Jacob" and "Judah" here do not mean the people of Jacob and of Judah, but the celestial church external and internal; "Jacob" the external church; and "Judah" the internal church. The internal good of this church is signified by "a habitation of the flock;" and the external good by "a couch of the herd." "Sharon" denotes the internal where is this good; and "the valley of Achor" denotes the external. (That "Sharon" denotes the internal of the celestial church, is evident from the passages where "Sharon" is mentioned, as in Isaiah 33:9, and 35:2; and that "the valley of Achor" denotes the external of this church, is evident in Hosea 2:15.)
[7] In Hosea:
Israel, Ephraim, and Judah shall go with their flocks and with their herds to seek Jehovah; and they shall not find Him (Hos. 5:6).
Here also "flocks and herds" signify the interiors and the exteriors with those who are meant by "Israel, Ephraim, and Judah." Otherwise what could be meant by their "going with flocks and herds to seek Jehovah"?


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