3368. Go not down into Egypt; dwell in the land of which I tell thee. That this signifies that He should not go down to memory-knowledges, but to rational things which being enlightened by the Divine are appearances of truth, is evident from the signification of "Egypt," as being memory-knowledge (n. 1164-1165, 1186, 1462); and from the signification of "land," as being here rational things which when enlightened by the Divine are appearances of truth; for the land which is here meant is Gerar, where Abimelech king of the Philistines was, and by "Gerar" is signified faith; by "Abimelech," the doctrine of faith that looks to rational things; and by the "king of the Philistines," doctrinal things (n. 3363, 3365); so that the "land," namely, Gerar where Abimelech was, has the above signification in the internal sense.
 For the signification of "land" is various (n. 620, 636, 1066), denoting the quality of the nation of which it is predicated (n. 1262). But in the proper sense "land" signifies the church (n. 3355); and because it signifies the church, it signifies also those things which are of the church, consequently the doctrinal things of charity and faith; thus also rational things which being enlightened by the Divine are appearances of truth; for that these appearances are the truths of the church, thus its doctrinal things, may be seen above (n. 3364, 3365). Whether you say rational things enlightened by the Divine, or appearances of truth, or celestial and spiritual truths such as are in the Lord's kingdom in the heavens, or in heaven, and such as are in His kingdom on the earths, or in the church, comes to the same thing; and the same are also called doctrinal things, but this from the truths that are in them. The angelic and human rational is and is called rational from appearances of truth that are enlightened by the Divine, and without these it is not rational; thus rational things are these appearances of truth.
 The reason why it is here said that He should not go down into Egypt, that is, not to memory-knowledges, is that memory-knowledges have already been treated of; for Abraham's sojourning in Egypt represented the Lord's instruction in His childhood in memory-knowledges (n. 1502). As regards the arcanum that He should not go down into Egypt, but should sojourn in the land of Gerar, that is, that He should not look to memory-knowledges, but to rational things, the case is this: All appearances of truth that have what is Divine in them belong to the rational, insomuch that rational truths and appearances of truth are the same; whereas memory-knowledges belong to the natural, insomuch that natural truths and memory-truths are the same. Rational truths, or appearances of truth, cannot possibly be and come forth except from the influx of the Divine into the rational, and through rational things into the memory-knowledges which are of the natural. The things which then take place in the rational appear in the natural; just as an image of many things appears all together in a mirror; and thereby they are presented before the man, and also before an angel; before an angel however they are not presented so evidently in the natural as they are with those who are in the world of spirits and are in the spiritual natural, and hence these have representatives of truth.
 The case is similar with every man, for as before said the man who is in good is a little heaven, or what is the same is an image of the Grand Heaven; and because Divine truth cannot inflow immediately into memory-knowledges, which are of the natural man, but only through rational things, as before said, therefore it is here said that Isaac should not go down into Egypt, but should reside in the land of Gerar. But a clear idea cannot be had concerning these things unless the nature of influx is known, and also the nature of ideas; and therefore of the Lord's Divine mercy these things will be treated of at the close of the chapters, where experiences are related.