(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 1571

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1571. There was strife between the herdmen of Abram's cattle and the herdmen of Lot's cattle. That this signifies that the internal man and the external did not agree, is evident from the signification of the "herdmen [or shepherds-pastores] of cattle," as being those who teach, and thus things that are of worship, as may be known to everyone; it is therefore unnecessary to confirm this from the Word. These things relate to what were called "tents" in the preceding verse 5; and it was there pointed out that these signify worship. What is said in verse 6, that immediately precedes these words, relates to what were called "flock and herd" in verse 5; and in the consideration of that verse it was also pointed out that these denote possessions or acquisitions. As worship is here treated of, namely, that of the internal man and of the external, and as these did not yet agree, it is here said that "there was strife between the herdmen;" for Abram represents the internal man, and Lot the external. In worship the nature and quality of the disagreement between the internal man and the external are especially discernible, and this even in every single thing of worship; for when in worship the internal man desires to regard the ends that belong to the kingdom of God, and the external man desires to regard the ends that belong to the world, there thus arises a disagreement which manifests itself in the worship, and that so plainly that the smallest bit of such disagreement is noticed in heaven. This is what is signified by the "strife between the herdmen of Abram's cattle and the herdmen of Lot's cattle." The cause is also subjoined, namely, that "the Canaanite and the Perizzite were then dwelling in the land."


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