4807. Genesis 38
THE LAST JUDGMENT
Before the preceding chapter (n. 4661-4664) a beginning was made of unfolding what the Lord says in Matthew (chap. 25 from verse 31 to the end) concerning the Judgment upon the good and the evil, who are there called sheep and goats. What the internal sense of these words is, has not yet been unfolded, but is now to be unfolded before this and some following chapters. And it will then be evident that by the Last Judgment is not there meant the last time of the world, and that the dead will then for the first time rise again and be gathered together before the Lord and judged; but that there is meant the last time of everyone who passes out of the world into the other life; for then is his Judgment, and this is the Judgment which is meant. Yet that this is so does not appear from the sense of the letter, but from the internal sense. The reason why the Lord so spoke, is that He spoke here, as everywhere else in the Word of the Old and the New Testament, by representatives and significatives; for to speak by representatives and significatives is to speak at the same time to the world and to heaven, or to men and to angels. Such speech is Divine, because universal, and hence is proper to the Word. Wherefore they who are in the world and care for worldly things only, do not apprehend anything else from what the Lord says here concerning the Last Judgment than that all are to rise again at one and the same time, and even that the Lord will then sit upon a throne of glory, and will speak to those gathered together according to these words. But they who care for heavenly things know that the time of everyone's resurrection is when he dies, and that the Lord's words here involve that everyone will be judged according to his life, thus that everyone carries his judgment with him, because he carries his life.