(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 4690

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4690. And his brethren said to him. That this signifies those who are of faith separate, is evident from the representation of Joseph's brethren, as being the church which turns away from charity to faith, and at last separates faith from charity (n. 4665, 4671, 4679); but those who are interior in this church are signified by the "sheaves" in the dream (n. 4686, 4688). The reason why Joseph's brethren represent this church is that in the proximate sense they signify the representative of a church, or the religiosity which was instituted among the posterity of Jacob, which posterity did not indeed know anything about faith as it is understood in the Christian Church, but only about truth. Truth was to them the same as faith is to Christians. Moreover, in the Hebrew language the same word is used for both. But the Jewish Church understood by truth the precepts of the Decalogue, and also the laws, judgments, testimonies, and statutes, which were handed down by Moses. They did not know the interiors of truth, nor did they wish to know them.
[2] The Christian Church however gives the name of faith to those doctrinal matters which they say are the interior things of the church and must be believed; for by faith the common people understand no other than the faith of creeds, or that which books of creeds teach; but those who think that the doctrinal things of faith or the knowledge of them cannot save anyone, and that few are in a life of faith, call confidence faith. These however are above the common people, and are more learned than others. From these things it is evident that the subject here treated of in the internal sense is not only the representative of a church which was instituted with the posterity of Jacob, but also the Christian Church which succeeded; for the Word of the Lord is universal, and comprehends in general every church. For it was equally foreseen by the Lord both how the case would be with the Christian Church, and how it would be with the Jewish Church, but proximately with the Jewish, wherefore this sense is called the proximate sense, or the internal historical sense, and the other the internal sense.


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