(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 3268

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3268. The firstborn of Ishmael, Nebaioth; and Kedar, and Adbeel, and Mibsam; and Mishma, and Dumah, and Massa; Hadar, and Tema, Jetur, Naphish, and Kedemah. That these signify all things that belong to the spiritual church, especially among the Gentiles, is evident from the representation of those who are here named, some of whom are mentioned elsewhere in the Word, particularly in the prophetical books-as Nebaioth, Kedar, Dumah, and Tema-and who there signify such things as belong to the spiritual church, especially among the Gentiles; moreover the same is manifest from their being twelve, for "twelve" signifies all things of faith, thus of the church, as will be shown hereafter; and for this reason it is said in the sixteenth verse that they were "twelve princes of their peoples."
[2] That by Nebaioth and Kedar are represented the things that belong to the spiritual church, especially among the Gentiles, namely its goods and derivative truths, is evident in Isaiah:
The abundance of camels shall cover thee, the dromedaries of Midian and Ephah; all they from Sheba shall come; they shall bring gold and frankincense, and they shall proclaim the praises of Jehovah. All the flocks of Kedar shall be gathered together unto thee, the rams of Nebaioth shall minister unto thee they shall come up with acceptance on Mine altar (Isa. 60:6-7)
which in the supreme sense is said of the Lord, and in the relative sense of His kingdom. The "flocks of Kedar" denote spiritual good (that a "flock" is spiritual good may be seen above, n. 343, 415, 2566); the "rams of Nebaioth" denote spiritual truth (that a "ram" is spiritual truth may be seen above, n. 2833).
[3] That "Kedar" is Arabia is manifest from the following passages, and that Arabia was called "Kedar" from the son of Ishmael is evident from the fact that in both verses lands or nations are enumerated all of which are named from the sons and grandsons of Abraham-as Midian, Ephah, and Sheba (concerning which see above, verses 2-4); and here likewise Kedar and Nebaioth.
[4] In Ezekiel:
Arabia, and all the princes of Kedar, these were the merchants of thy hand; in lambs, and rams, and he-goats, in these were they thy merchants (Ezek. 27:21);
treating of Tyre, that is, of those who are in the knowledges of good and truth. (That "Tyre" has this signification may be seen above, n. 1201.) "Arabia" denotes spiritual good; the "princes of Kedar," spiritual truths; "lambs, rams, and he-goats" denote spiritual goods and truths.
[5] In Jeremiah:
Arise ye, go up to Kedar, and lay waste the sons of the east. Their tents and their flocks shall they take; they shall carry away for themselves their curtains, and all their vessels, and their camels (Jer. 49:28-29);
where the subject is the vastation of the spiritual church, meant by "Kedar and the sons of the east." "Tents and flocks" denote the goods of this church; "curtains and vessels," its truths; the holy things of worship are what are signified by "tents and flocks," and by "curtains and vessels;" and all the holy things of worship relate to good and truth.
[6] But those who are not in truth, because not in good, are those who are represented by the "Arabians and Kedarites in the wilderness" as in Isaiah:
Babylon shall not be inhabited forever, neither shall the Arabian pitch tent there (Isa. 13:19, 20).
In the same:
Let the wilderness and the cities thereof lift up [their voice], the villages that Kedar doth inhabit (Isa. 42:11).
In Jeremiah:
By the ways hast thou sat for them, as an Arabian in the wilderness (Jer. 3:2).
In David:
Woe is me, that I sojourn in Meshech, that I dwell with the tents of Kedar (Ps. 120:5).
[7] In Isaiah:
In the forest in Arabia shall ye lodge, O ye travelling companies of Dedanites. Bring ye waters to meet him that is thirsty; ye inhabitants of the land of Tema forestall the fugitive with his bread. For they shall wander before the swords, from before the drawn sword, from before the bent bow, and from before the grievousness of war. For thus hath the Lord said unto me, Yet within a year, according to the years of a hireling, and all the glory of Kedar shall be consumed; and the residue of the number of bows of the mighty men of the sons of Kedar (Isa. 21:13-17).
To "lodge in the forest of Arabia" denotes vastation as to truth; "the travelling companies of Dedanites" denote those who are in knowledges (n. 3240, 3241); "the inhabitants of the land of Tema" denote those who are in simple good, such as is that of the well-disposed Gentiles. It is evident that these were called "Tema" from Ishmael's son. "Kedar" denotes those who are in simple truth; of whom it is said that they shall "wander from before swords, and from before the grievousness of war," by which is signified that they will not endure temptation combats, because they are no longer in good.
[8] In Jeremiah:
Pass over to the isles of Kittim, and see; and send unto Kedar, and consider diligently, and see whether there hath been done such a thing, whether a nation hath changed gods, which yet are no gods (Jer. 2:10-11);
the "isles of Kittim" denote those who are more remote from worship, that is, Gentiles who are in simple good, and thereby in natural truth (n. 1156, 1158); that "Kedar" also denotes the same is manifest.
[9] In the same:
Then took I the cup from the hand of Jehovah, and made all the nations to drink, unto whom Jehovah had sent me; Dedan, and Tema, and Buz, and all that are clipped at the corner [of the beard]; and all the kings of Arabia, and all the kings of the west, that dwell in the wilderness (Jer. 25:17, 23-24);
where also the vastation of the spiritual church is treated of, and Tema and Arabia are named along with several others, from which it is manifest that by "Tema," as by "Arabia," those are signified who are of the spiritual church; but to Arabia are attributed kings and cities, while princes and villages are ascribed to Kedar.
[10] Besides these, Dumah also is mentioned in Isaiah (21:11). The reason why by these nations are signified the things that belong to the spiritual church, is that the Ancient Church, which was spiritual, was also among them (n. 1238, 2385); their doctrinals and rituals differed, and yet they were one church because they did not make faith, but charity, essential. In course of time however, as charity ceased, even that which there was of the church with them was lost; yet there still remained a representative of the church by them, with variety according to what there had been of the church with them. Hence it is that wherever they are named in the Word, they themselves are not signified, but only that of the church in general which had been there.


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