(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 1363

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1363. That Abram, Nahor, and Haran were sons of Terah, and that they were also nations named from them as their fathers, and that by them idolatrous worships are here signified, is evident from the explanations given above; and also from the fact that idolatry is signified by Terah, whose sons they were. But what idolatrous worships are here signified by the three sons of Terah, and afterwards by Lot the son of Haran, may be seen if idolatrous worships are examined according to their kinds. There are in general four idolatrous worships, one more interior than another. The three more interior ones are as the sons of one parent; the fourth is as the son of the third. Idolatrous worships are internal and external; the internal are those which condemn man; the external not so much. The more interior the idolatrous worship is, the more it condemns; but the more exterior, the less. Internal idolaters do not acknowledge God, but adore themselves and the world, and make idols of all their cupidities; whereas external idolaters are able to acknowledge God, although they do not know who is the God of the universe. Internal idolaters are known from the life they have acquired; and in proportion as this life departs from the life of charity, in the same proportion are they more interior idolaters. External idolaters are known solely from their worship; and, although idolaters, they can still have the life of charity. Internal idolaters can profane holy things, but external idolaters cannot; and therefore external idolatry is tolerated, in order to prevent the profanation of holy things; as may be seen from what has been said before (n. 571, 582; and at verse 9, n. 1327).


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