(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 4847

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4847. Lest he also die, like his brethren. That this signifies fear lest it should perish, namely, the representative of a church that was with the posterity descended from Jacob, and specifically that descended from Jacob through Judah, is evident from the signification of "lest he also die," as being fear lest it should perish. In regard to this-that the representative of a church which was with the posterity of Jacob would perish if the internal things of a genuine representative church were adjoined to it, the case is as follows. A representative church, such as had existed among the ancients, was to have been instituted with the posterity of Jacob; but that nation was of such a quality that they wished to worship and to adore external things only, and did not wish to know anything at all about internal things; for they were immersed in the cupidities of the love of self and of the world, and thence in falsities. That nation, more than the Gentiles, believed that there were many gods, but that Jehovah was greater than they because He could do greater miracles; and therefore as soon as the miracles ceased, and also when they had become little esteemed because of being frequent and familiar, they straightway turned to other gods, as is very evident from the historic and prophetic parts of the Word.
[2] Because that nation was of such a quality, a representative church such as had existed among the ancients could not be instituted with them, but only the representative of a church; and it was provided by the Lord that some communication with heaven might thereby be effected; for what is representative is possible with the evil, because it regards not the person, but the thing. From this it is plain that insofar as they were concerned their worship was merely idolatrous (n. 4825), although the representatives contained within them holy Divine things. With such idolatrous worship, what is internal could not be conjoined, for if what is internal had been conjoined, that is, if they had acknowledged internal things, they would have profaned holy things; for if a holy internal is conjoined with an idolatrous external it becomes profane. It is for this reason that internal things were not disclosed to that nation, and that if they had been disclosed it would have perished.
[3] That that nation could not receive and acknowledge internal things, however much they might have been revealed to them, is very plain from what they are at this day; for they now know internal things, because they live among Christians; but still they reject and also scoff at them. Even the most of those who have been converted do the same at heart. Thus it is evident that a church representative of spiritual and celestial things was not with that nation, but only the representative of a church, that is, the external without the internal, which in itself is idolatrous. From these things it may also be seen how erroneously those Christians think who believe that at the end of the church the Jewish nation will be converted, and be chosen in preference to Christians; and still more those who believe that the Messiah, or the Lord, will then appear to them and by a great prophet and great miracles bring them back into the land of Canaan. But into these errors those fall who by "Judah," "Israel," and the "land of Canaan," in the prophetic parts of the Word, understand simply Judah, Israel, and the land of Canaan; and who thus believe only the literal sense, and care not for any internal sense.


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