(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 1695

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1695. And all their food. That this signifies that they were deprived of the power of thinking falsity, is evident from the signification of "food." What the celestial, spiritual, and natural food are that are enjoyed in the other life, has been shown before (n. 56-58, 680, 681). These also correspond to the food of the body; and therefore are represented in the Word by food, and are called "food." But the food of evil and infernal spirits is that which is contrary to wisdom, intelligence, and true knowledge, which is all falsity; and wonderful to say, evil spirits are sustained by this food. The reason that it sustains them is that it is their life. Unless there is given them the means of vilifying the truth, and indeed of blaspheming it, they cannot live. But still license is given them to think and speak only that falsity which is from their evil, and not that which is contrary to their evil, for this would be deceit for insofar as they speak falsity from their evil, it is from their life; and then it is forgiven them, because their nature is such that otherwise they could not live.
[2] As to their being deprived of the power of doing evil and of thinking falsity, the case is this: In the combats of temptations the evil spirits are permitted to draw forth all the evil and falsity that are in the man, and to battle from the evil and falsity of the man; but when they have been overcome, they are no longer permitted to do so, for they instantly perceive in the man that good and truth have been confirmed. Spirits, more than men, are gifted with such perception; from the very sphere of a man who has been confirmed in truth and good, they know at once how the case is, what answer they will get, and more besides. This is plainly evident with the spiritual regenerate man, with whom there are evil spirits equally as well as with the non-regenerate, but they are subjugated and serve. This is what is meant by their being deprived of the power of doing evil and of thinking falsity.


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