(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 39

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39. Verse 20. And God said, Let the waters cause to creep forth the creeping thing, the living soul; and let fowl fly above the earth upon the faces of the expanse of the heavens. After the great luminaries have been kindled and placed in the internal man, and the external receives light from them, then the man first begins to live. Heretofore he can scarcely be said to have lived, inasmuch as the good which he did he supposed that he did of himself, and the truth which he spoke that he spoke of himself; and since man of himself is dead, and there is in him nothing but what is evil and false, therefore whatsoever he produces from himself is not alive, insomuch that he cannot, from himself, do good that in itself is good. That man cannot even think what is good, nor will what is good, consequently cannot do what is good, except from the Lord, must be plain to everyone from the doctrine of faith, for the Lord says in Matthew:
He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man (Matt. 13:37).
Nor can any good come except from the real Fountain of good, which is One only, as He says in another place:
None is good save One, God (Luke 18:19).
[2] Nevertheless when the Lord is resuscitating man, that is, regenerating him, to life, He permits him at first to suppose that he does what is good and speaks what is true from himself, for at that time he is incapable of conceiving otherwise, nor can he in any other way be led to believe, and afterwards to perceive, that all good and truth are from the Lord alone. While man is thinking in such a way his truths and goods are compared to the "tender grass" and also to the "herb yielding seed" and lastly to the "tree bearing fruit" all of which are inanimate; but now that he is vivified by love and faith, and believes that the Lord works all the good that he does and all the truth that he speaks, he is compared first to the "creeping things of the water" and to the "fowls which fly above the earth" and also to "beasts" which are all animate things, and are called "living souls."


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