4229. In volume 3* a commencement was made with the explication of the Lord's predictions in the twenty-fourth chapter of Matthew concerning the Last Judgment, the explication being prefixed to the last chapters of that volume, and being continued as far as the thirty-first verse of the chapter in the Evangelist just referred to (see n. 3353-3356, 3486-3489, 3650-3655, 3897-3901, 4056-4060). The internal sense in a summary of these predictions of the Lord plainly appears from the explications already given, namely, that prediction is there made concerning the successive vastation of the church, and the ultimate setting up of a New Church, in the following order:
1. That the members of the church would begin not to know what good and truth are, and would dispute about them.
2. That they would hold them in contempt.
3. That at heart they would not acknowledge them.
4. That they would profane them.
5. And because the truth of faith and the good of charity would still remain with some, who are called the "elect," a description is given of the state of the faith as it then existed.
6. Next of the state of the charity.
7. And finally the commencement of a New Church is treated of, which is meant by the words that were last explained:
He shall send forth His angels with a trumpet and a great voice, and they shall gather together His elect from the four winds, from the end of the heavens even to the end thereof (Matt. 24:31),
by which is meant the commencement of a New Church (see n. 4060e).
* That is, of the original Latin work.