3951. For hiring I have hired thee with my son's dudaim. That this signifies that it was thus promised from forethought is evident from the signification of "hiring to hire" as being that which is promised; as is also evident from what goes before. That it is from foresight, is because all the conjunction of truth with good, and of good with truth, in man, is effected from foresight; that is, from the Lord's Providence. For the subject here treated of is the conjunction of good with truth, and of truth with good, and thus the good that is appropriated to man. For good is not good in man until it has been conjoined with truth. And as all good comes from the Lord, that is, all the appropriation of good through its conjunction with truth, it is therefore here said, "from foresight." The Lord's Providence is especially concerned with this conjunction. By means of it man becomes man, and is distinguished from the brute animals; and he becomes man insofar as he receives of it; that is, insofar as he permits the Lord to effect it. This therefore is the good that is with man; and no other good that is spiritual and that remains to eternity, is possible.
 Moreover the goods of the external man, which so long as the man lives in the world are the delights of life, are good only insofar as they partake inwardly of this good. For example, the good of riches. Insofar as riches have spiritual good within them, that is, insofar as they have as their end the good of the neighbor, the good of our country or the public good, and the good of the church, so far they are good. But they who conclude that the spiritual good of which we are speaking is not possible in a condition of worldly opulence, and who therefore persuade themselves that to make room for heaven they must divest themselves of such things, are much mistaken.
For if they renounce their wealth, or deprive themselves of it, they can then do good to no one, nor can themselves live in the world except in misery and thus can no longer have as their end the good of the neighbor, and the good of their country, nor even the good of the church, but themselves only, that they may be saved, and become greater than others in the heavens. Moreover, when they divest themselves of worldly goods, they expose themselves to contempt, because they make themselves of low estimation in the sight of others, and consequently useless for performing services and discharging duties. But when they have the good of others as their end, they then have also as an end, or as means, a state of being in the capability of effecting this end.
 The case herein is precisely as it is with the nutrition of a man, which has as its end that he may have a sound mind in a sound body. If a man deprives his body of its nourishment, he deprives himself also of the condition needed for his end; and therefore he who is a spiritual man does not despise nourishment, nor even its pleasures; and yet he does not hold them as his end, but only as a means that is of service to his end. From this as an example we can judge of all other things.