4493. And they circumcised every male, all that went out of the gate of his city. That this signifies accession to external things, is evident from the signification of "circumcising every male," as being to be initiated thereby into the representatives and significatives of the descendants of Jacob in respect to the external alone (see n. 4486); and from the signification of "going out of the gate of the city," as being to recede from the doctrine of the Church among the Ancients, concerning which just above (n. 4492). And because recession from their own doctrine and accession to externals are both signified, it is therefore twice said, "all that went out of the gate of his city." But it is not at the same time said also, as elsewhere, "they that go into it," because by "going in" is signified accession to doctrine, and recession from externals, whereas here the contrary is signified.
 It is necessary to say how the case herein is. The men of the Most Ancient Church, of the remains of which were Hamor and Shechem with their families, were of a totally different genius and native quality from the men of the Ancient Church; for the men of the Most Ancient Church had a will in which there was soundness, but not so the men of the Ancient Church. Therefore with the men of the Most Ancient Church the Lord could inflow through the will, thus by an internal way; but not so with the men of the Ancient Church, in whom the will had been destroyed; but with these He inflowed into the understanding, thus not by an internal way, but by an external way, as before said (n. 4489). To inflow through the will is to inflow through the good of love, for all good is of the will part; but to inflow through the understanding is to inflow through the truth of faith, for all truth is of the intellectual part. When the Lord regenerated the men of the Ancient Church He formed a new will in their intellectual part.
(That goods and truths were implanted in the will part of the men of the Most Ancient Church, may be seen, n. 895, 927: But in the intellectual part of the men of the Ancient Church, n. 863, 875, 895, 927, 2124, 2256, 4328: That a new will is formed in the intellectual part, n. 928, 1023, 1043, 1044, 4328: That there is a parallelism between the Lord and the good that is with man, but not between the Lord and the truth with man, n. 1831, 1832, 2718, 3514: That hence the men of the Ancient Church were in comparative obscurity, n. 2708, 2715, 2935, 2937, 3246, 3833.) From all this it is evident that the men of the Most Ancient Church were of a totally different genius and native quality from the men of the Ancient Church.
 It was for this reason that the men of the Most Ancient Church were internal men and had no externals of worship, and that the men of the Ancient Church were external men and had externals of worship; for the former saw external things through internal ones as in the light of the sun by day, and the latter saw internal things through external ones as in the light of the moon and stars by night. Therefore also in heaven the Lord appears to the former as a sun, but to the latter as a moon (n. 1521, 1529-1531, 2441, 2495, 4060). In these explications the former are they who are called "celestial," but the latter "spiritual."
 To illustrate the difference let us take an example: If a man of the Most Ancient Church had read the historic or prophetic Word, he would have seen its internal sense without any previous instruction or explication, and this so fully that the celestial and spiritual things of this sense would have at once occurred to him, and scarcely anything in the sense of the letter; thus the internal sense would have been in clearness to him, but the sense of the letter in obscurity. He would be like one who hears another speaking and gets the meaning without attending to the words. But if a man of the Ancient Church had read the Word he could not have seen its internal sense without previous instruction or explication; thus the internal sense would have been in obscurity to him, but the sense of the letter in clearness. He would be like one who hears another speaking and is intent upon the words while not attending to the meaning, which is thus lost to him. But when a man of the Jewish Church reads the Word, he apprehends nothing beyond the sense of the letter, he is not aware that there is any internal sense, and also denies it; and at the present day the case is the same with a man of the Christian Church.
 All this shows what was the difference between those represented by Hamor and Shechem (who being of the remains of the Most Ancient Church were in internals and not in externals), and those signified by the sons of Jacob (who were in externals and not in internals); and it shows further that Hamor and Shechem could not accede to externals and accept those among the sons of Jacob without their internals being closed; thus causing their eternal destruction.
 This is the secret reason why Hamor and Shechem with their families were slain, which otherwise would not have been permitted. But this does not exculpate the sons of Jacob from having committed an enormous crime. They knew nothing of this secret reason, and it was not the end they had in view. Everyone is judged according to his end or intention, and that their intention was fraudulent is plainly stated in the thirteenth verse; and when any such crime is permitted by the Lord, it is evil men and their infernal instigators who are the authors of it. Nevertheless all the evil which the evil intend and do to the good is turned by the Lord into good, as in the present instance, in that Hamor and Shechem with their families were saved.