(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 4060

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4060. Therefore that by the words now before us there is signified the state of the church at that time in respect to good (that is, as to charity toward the neighbor and love to the Lord), is evident from their internal sense, which is as follows:
But immediately after the affliction of those days;
signifies the state of the church in respect to the truth of faith (concerning which just above). In the Word the desolation of truth in various places is called "affliction." (That "days" are states may be seen above, n. 23, 487, 488, 493, 893, 2788, 3462, 3785.) From this it is manifest that by these words is signified that after there is no longer any faith, there will be no charity. For faith leads to charity, because it teaches what charity is, and charity receives its quality from the truths of faith; but the truths of faith receive their essence and their life from charity, as has been repeatedly shown in the preceding volumes.
[2] The sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light; signifies love to the Lord, which is the "sun;" and charity toward the neighbor, which is the "moon." "To be darkened and not to give their light" signifies that they will not appear, and thus will vanish away. (That the "sun" is the celestial of love, and the "moon" the spiritual of love; that is, that the "sun" is love to the Lord, and the "moon" charity toward the neighbor, which comes forth through faith, may be seen above, n. 1053, 1529, 1530, 2120, 2441, 2495.) The reason why this is the signification of the "sun and moon," is that in the other life the Lord appears as a sun to those in heaven who are in love to Him, and who are called the celestial; and as a moon to those who are in charity toward the neighbor, and who are called the spiritual (see n. 1053, 1521, 1529-1531, 3636, 3643).
[3] The sun and moon in the heavens (that is, the Lord) is never darkened, nor does it lose its light, but it shines perpetually; and so neither is love to the Lord darkened with the celestial, nor does charity toward the neighbor lose its light with the spiritual, in the heavens; nor on earth with those with whom these angels are, that is, those who are in love and charity. Those however who are in no love and charity, but in the love of self and of the world, and consequently in hatred and revenge, bring that "darkening" upon themselves. The case herein is as it is with the sun of this world, which shines continuously; but when the clouds interpose, it does not appear (n. 2441).
[4] And the stars shall fall from heaven;
signifies that the knowledges of good and truth will perish. Nothing else is signified by "stars" when these are mentioned in the Word (n. 1808, 2849).
And the powers of the heavens shall be shaken; signifies the foundations of the church, which are said to be "shaken" and "made to quake" when they perish. For the church on earth is the foundation of heaven, because the influx of good and truth from the Lord through the heavens finally terminates in the goods and truths that are with the man of the church. When therefore the man of the church is in such a perverted state as no longer to admit the influx of good and truth, the powers of the heavens are said to be "shaken." For this reason it is always provided by the Lord that something of the church shall remain; and that when an old church perishes, a new one shall be set up again.
[5] And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven;
signifies the appearing of Divine truth at that time; the "sign" signifies the appearing; the "Son of man," the Lord as to Divine truth (see n. 2803, 2813, 3704). It was this appearing or this "sign," concerning which the disciples asked when they said, "Tell us when shall these things be, and what shall be the sign of Thy coming, and of the consummation of the age" (verse 3). For they knew from the Word that when the age should be consummated, the Lord would come; and they learned from the Lord Himself that He would "come again," by which they understood that the Lord would once more come into the world; not yet knowing that the Lord has come whenever the church has been vastated, not indeed in person, as when He assumed the human by birth and made it Divine; but by means of appearings-either manifest, as when He appeared to Abraham in Mamre, to Moses in the bush, to the people of Israel on Mount Sinai, and to Joshua when he entered the land of Canaan; or not so manifest, as by inspirations through which the Word was given, and afterwards through the Word; for the Lord is present in the Word, because all things in the Word are from Him and concerning Him, as may be seen from what has already been frequently shown. This latter is the appearing here signified by the "sign of the Son of man," and which is described in this verse.
[6] And then shall all the tribes of the earth wail;
signifies that all who are in the good of love and the truth of faith shall be in grief. That "wailing" signifies this, may be seen in Zechariah 12:10-14; and that "tribes" signify all things of good and truth, or of love and faith, and consequently those who are in them, may be seen above (n. 3858, 3926). They are called the "tribes of the earth," because those are meant who are within the church. (That the "earth" is the church may be seen above, n. 662, 1066, 1067, 1262, 1733, 1850, 2117, 2928, 3355.)
[7] And they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of the heavens with power and great glory;
signifies that the Word will then be revealed as to its internal sense, in which the Lord is; the "Son of man" is the Divine truth therein (n. 2803, 2813, 3704); the "cloud" is the literal sense; "power" is predicated of the good, and "glory" of the truth, therein. (That these things are signified by "seeing the Son of man coming in the clouds of the heavens," see the preface to the eighteenth chapter.) This is the "coming of the Lord" here meant, and not that He will literally appear in the clouds. Now follows the subject of the setting up of a New Church, which takes place when the old one is vastated and rejected.
[8] He shall send forth His angels with a trumpet and a great voice;
signifies election, not by visible angels, still less by trumpets, and by great voices; but by the influx of holy good and holy truth from the Lord through angels; and therefore by "angels" in the Word there is signified something of the Lord (n. 1925, 2821, 3039); here, there are signified things that are from the Lord and concerning the Lord. By the "trumpet" and the "great voice" there is signified evangelization, as elsewhere in the Word.
[9] And they shall gather together His elect from the four winds, from the end of the heavens even to the end thereof;
signifies the setting up of a New Church. The "elect" are those who are in the good of love and of faith (n. 3755-3900); the "four winds" from which they shall be gathered together, are all states of good and truth (n. 3708); "from the end of the heavens to the end of them" denotes the internals and the externals of the church. Such therefore are the things signified by these words of the Lord.


1. And he heard the words of Laban's sons, saying, Jacob hath taken all that was our father's; and from that which was our father's hath he made all this abundance.
2. And Jacob saw the faces of Laban, and behold he was not at all with him as yesterday and the day before.
3. And Jehovah said unto Jacob, Return unto the land of thy fathers, and to thy nativity, and I will be with thee.
4. And Jacob sent, and called Rachel and Leah to the field unto his flock.
5. And he said unto them, I see your father's faces, that he is not at all toward me as yesterday and the day before; and the God of my father hath been with me.
6. And ye know that with all my strength I have served your father.
7. And your father hath deceived me, and hath changed my reward ten ways, and God hath not suffered him to do evil with me.
8. If he said thus, The speckled shall be thy reward, then all the flock bare speckled; and if he said thus, The party-colored shall be thy reward, then all the flock bare party-colored.
9. And God hath taken away the acquisition of your father, and hath given it to me.
10. And it came to pass at the time that the flock grew warm, that I lifted up mine eyes, and saw in a dream, and behold the he-goats which leaped upon the flock were party-colored, speckled, and grizzled.
11. And the angel of God said unto me in the dream, Jacob; and I said, Behold me!
12. And he said, Lift up I pray thine eyes, and see all the he-goats which leap upon the flock, party-colored, speckled, and grizzled; for I have seen all that Laban doeth unto thee.
13. I am the God of Bethel, where thou anointedst a pillar, where thou vowedst a vow unto me; now arise, go forth out of this land, and return unto the land of thy nativity.
14. And Rachel and Leah answered and said unto him, Have we any longer a portion and inheritance in our father's house?
15. Are we not counted of him strangers? For he hath sold us, and devouring hath also devoured our silver.
16. For all the riches which God hath taken away from our father, they are ours and our sons'; and now all that God hath said unto thee, do.
17. And Jacob arose, and lifted his sons and his women upon the camels.
18. And he carried away all his acquisition, and all his substance which he had gathered, the acquisition of his purchase, which he had gathered in Paddan-aram, to go to Isaac his father in the land of Canaan.
19. And Laban was gone to shear his flock; and Rachel stole the teraphim which were her father's.
20. And Jacob stole the heart of Laban the Aramean, in that he told him not that he was fleeing.
21. And he fled, he and all that he had; and he arose and passed over the river, and set his face toward the mountain of Gilead.
22. And it was told Laban on the third day, that Jacob was fled.
23. And he took his brethren with him, and pursued after him a way of seven days, and joined him in the mountain of Gilead.
24. And God came to Laban the Aramean in a dream by night, and said unto him, Take heed to thyself lest thou speak with Jacob from good even to evil.
25. And Laban came up with Jacob, and Jacob pitched his tent in the mountain; and Laban pitched with his brethren in the mountain of Gilead.
26. And Laban said to Jacob, What hast thou done, that thou hast stolen my heart, and hast carried away my daughters as captives of the sword?
27. Wherefore hast thou concealed thyself to flee? and hast stolen me? and hast not told me? And I would have sent thee away with gladness, and with songs, with timbrel, and with harp.
28. And thou hast not suffered me to kiss my sons and my daughters; now thou hast acted foolishly.
29. Let my hand be to God to do you evil! And the God of your father spake unto me yesternight, saying, Take heed to thyself that thou speak not with Jacob from good even to evil.
30. And now going thou hast gone, because longing thou hast longed toward thy father's house; wherefore hast thou stolen my gods?
31. And Jacob answered and said to Laban, Because I was afraid, for I said, Perchance thou wilt take away thy daughters from me by force.
32. With whomsoever thou findest thy gods, he shall not live before our brethren; search thou what is with me, and take it to thee. And Jacob knew not that Rachel had stolen them.
33. And Laban came into Jacob's tent, and into Leah's tent, and into the tent of the two handmaids, and found them not; and he went out of Leah's tent, and came into Rachel's tent.
34. And Rachel had taken the teraphim, and put them in the camel's straw, and sat upon them; and Laban felt about all the tent, and found them not.
35. And she said to her father, Let there not be anger in the eyes of my lord, that I cannot rise up before thee, for the way of women is upon me. And he searched and found not the teraphim.
36. And Jacob was wroth, and chode with Laban; and Jacob answered and said to Laban, What is my trespass? What is my sin, in that thou hast hotly pursued after me?
37. Whereas thou hast felt about all my vessels, what hast thou found of all the vessels of thy house? Set it here before my brethren and thy brethren, and let them judge between us two.
38. These twenty years have I been with thee, thy sheep and thy she-goats have not cast their young, and the rams of thy flock have I not eaten.
39. The torn I brought not unto thee, I bare the loss of it, from my hand didst thou require it, whether stolen by day or stolen by night.
40. Thus I was; in the day the heat consumed me, and the cold in the night, and my sleep has been chased from mine eyes.
41. These twenty years have I served thee in thy house, fourteen years for thy two daughters, and six years for thy flock, and thou hast changed my reward ten ways.
42. Except the God of my father, the God of Abraham, and the Dread of Isaac, had been with me, surely now hadst thou sent me away empty. God hath seen my misery and the weariness of my hands, and judged yesternight.
43. And Laban answered, and said unto Jacob, The daughters are my daughters, and the sons are my sons, and the flock is my flock, and all that thou seest is mine; and what can I do this day unto these my daughters, or unto their sons which they have borne?
44. And now come, let us make a covenant, I and thou, and let it be for a witness between me and thee.
45. And Jacob took a stone, and set it up for a pillar.
46. And Jacob said unto his brethren, Gather stones; and they took stones, and made a heap, and they did eat there upon the heap.
47. And Laban called it Jegar-sahadutha, and Jacob called it Galeed.
48. And Laban said, This heap is a witness between me and thee this day; therefore he called the name of it Galeed;
49. And Mizpah; for he said, Jehovah watch between me and thee, for we shall be hidden a man from his fellow.
50. If thou shalt afflict my daughters, and if thou shalt take women over my daughters, there is no man with us; see God is witness between me and thee.
51. And Laban said to Jacob, Behold this heap, and behold the pillar which I have set up between me and thee.
52. This heap be witness, and the pillar be witness, that I will not pass over this heap to thee, and that thou shalt not pass over this heap to me, and this pillar, for evil.
53. The God of Abraham and the God of Nahor judge between us, the God of their father; and Jacob swear by the Dread of his father Isaac.
54. And Jacob sacrificed a sacrifice in the mountain, and called his brethren to eat bread; and they did eat bread, and tarried all night in the mountain.
55. And in the morning Laban arose early, and kissed his sons and his daughters, and blessed them; and Laban departed and returned to his place.


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