(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 4447

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4447. And Hamor spoke with them, saying. That this signifies the good of the Church among the Ancients, is evident from the representation of Hamor, as being what is from the ancients (see n. 4431), that is, the good of the church which was among them. For the good of the church is father, and the derivative truth ("Shechem") is son; and therefore by "father" in the Word is signified good, and by "son" truth. It is here said "the good of the Church among the Ancients," but not "the good of the Ancient Church," for the reason that by the "Church among the Ancients" is meant the church that was derived from the Most Ancient Church which existed before the flood, and by the "Ancient Church" is meant the church that existed after the flood. These two churches have sometimes been treated of in the preceding pages, and it has been shown that the Most Ancient Church which was before the flood was celestial, but the Ancient Church which was after the flood was spiritual, and the difference between them has often been treated of.
[2] The remains of the Most Ancient Church which was celestial still existed in the land of Canaan, especially among those called Hittites and Hivites. The reason why these remains did not exist anywhere else was that the Most Ancient Church called "Man" or "Adam" (n. 478, 479) was in the land of Canaan, and therefore the "garden of Eden," by which was signified the intelligence and wisdom of the men of that church (n. 100, 1588), and by the trees in it their perception, (n. 103, 2163, 2722, 2972), was in that land. And because intelligence and wisdom were signified by this "garden" or paradise, the church itself was meant by it; and because the church was meant, so also was heaven; and because heaven, so also in the supreme sense, was the Lord; and therefore in this sense the "land of Canaan" itself signifies the Lord, in the relative sense heaven and also the church, and in the individual sense the man of the church (n. 1413, 1437, 1607, 3038, 3481, 3705); and therefore also the term "land" or "earth" when mentioned alone in the Word has a like signification (n. 566, 662, 1066, 1067, 1413, 1607, 3355); the "new heaven and new earth" being a new church in respect to its internal and its external (n. 1733, 1850, 2117, 2118, 3355). That the Most Ancient Church was in the land of Canaan may be seen in n. 567; and the result of this was that the places there became representative, and for this reason Abram was commanded to go there, and the land was given to his descendants the sons of Jacob in order that the representatives of the places in accordance with which the Word was to be written, might be retained. (See n. 3686; and that for the same reason all the places there, as well as the mountains and rivers, and all the borders round about, became representative, n. 1585, 1866, 4240.)
[3] All this shows what is here meant by the "Church among the Ancients," namely, remains from the Most Ancient Church. And as these remains existed among the Hittites and Hivites, therefore Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, together with their wives, obtained a place of burial with the Hittites in their land (Gen. 23:1-20; 49:29-32; 50:13); and Joseph with the Hivites (Josh. 24:32). Hamor the father of Shechem represented the remains of this Church, and therefore by him is signified the good of the Church among the Ancients, and consequently the origin of interior truth from a Divine stock (n. 4399). (What the distinction is between the Most Ancient Church which was before the flood, and the Ancient Church which was after the flood, may be seen above, n. 597, 607, 608, 640, 641, 765, 784, 895, 920, 1114-1128, 1238, 1327, 2896, 2897.)


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