4289. That by "Let me go, for the dawn ariseth," is signified that what is representative would depart from the posterity of Jacob, before they came into the representatives of the land of Canaan, is evident from the series of things in the internal historical sense, in which Jacob's posterity are treated of. Their state in respect to the things of the church is also described in the Word by evening, by night, and by morning or dawn - by the latter when they came into the land of Canaan, consequently into the representative of a church there. The case herein is that the representative of a church could not be instituted among them until they had been altogether vastated, that is, until they had no knowledge of internal things; for if they had had a knowledge of internal things they could have been affected by them, and thus would have profaned them. For holy things (that is, internal truths and goods) can be profaned by those who know and acknowledge them, and still more by those who are affected by them, but not by those who do not acknowledge them. But see what has been previously said and shown about profanation, namely: That those can profane holy things who know and acknowledge them, but not those who do not (n. 593, 1008, 1010, 1059, 3398, 3898): That those who are within the church can profane holy things, but not those who are without (n. 2051): That therefore so far as is possible those are withheld from the acknowledgment and belief of good and truth who cannot remain therein permanently (n. 3398, 3402): That these are also kept in ignorance lest they should profane (n. 301-303): What danger there is from the profanation of holy things (n. 571, 582): That worship becomes external lest what is internal should be profaned (n. 1327, 1328): And that therefore internal truths were not disclosed to the Jews (n. 3398).
 It was therefore provided by the Lord that the genuine representative of a church (that is, what is internal) should depart from the posterity of Jacob before they came into the representatives of the land of Canaan, insomuch that they did not know anything at all concerning the Lord. They did indeed know that the Messiah was to come into the world, but to the end that He should exalt them to glory and eminence over all nations of the whole earth - not to save their souls to eternity. Neither did they know anything about the heavenly kingdom, nor about the life after death, and not even about charity and faith. In order that they might be reduced to this ignorance they were kept some hundreds of years in Egypt; and when they were called out thence, they did not know even the name of Jehovah (Exod. 3:12-14). Moreover, they had lost all the worship of the representative church, insomuch that after the commandments of the Decalogue had been promulgated before them from Mount Sinai, within a month they fell back to the Egyptian worship, which was that of a golden calf (Exod. 32).
 And because the brood that had been brought out of Egypt was of such a character, they all perished in the wilderness. For nothing more was required of them than to keep the statutes and precepts in the outward form, because this was to act as the representative of a church; but those who had grown up in Egypt could not be reduced to this; yet their children could, although with difficulty, in the beginning by miracles, and afterwards by fears and captivities, as is manifest from the books of Joshua and Judges. From this it is evident that all genuine or internal representation of the church had departed from them before they came into the land of Canaan, where the external representative of the church was begun among them in full form. For the land of Canaan was the veriest land of all where the representatives of the church could be presented, because all the places and all the boundaries of this land had been representative from ancient times (see n. 3686).