5293. And let them gather all the food. That this signifies all things that are of use, is evident from the signification of "gathering," as being to bring together and preserve; and from the signification of "food," as being things that are of use. In the internal sense "food" properly signifies the things that nourish the soul of man, that is, that nourish him after death, for he then lives as a soul or spirit, and no longer needs material food, but spiritual food, which consists in everything that is of use, and everything that is conducive to use. That which is conducive to use is to know what is good and true; that which is of use is to will and do what is good and true. These are the things that nourish the angels, and are therefore called spiritual and heavenly food. Man's mind within which are his interior understanding and interior will, or his intentions or ends, is not nourished by any other food even while he lives in the body. Material food does not penetrate to the mind, but only to the things of the body, which that food sustains to the end that this mind may enjoy its food while the body enjoys its food, that is, that this mind may be sound in a sound body.
 That "food" in the spiritual sense denotes everything that is of use, is because all man's knowing, and all his understanding and being wise, and therefore all his willing, ought to have use for their end; hence the quality of his life is according to the quality of his use. That "food" in the internal sense denotes everything that is of use, is plain from these words of the Lord:
Jesus said to the disciples, I have food to eat that ye know not of. Therefore said the disciples one to another, Hath any man brought Him aught to eat? Jesus saith unto them, My food is to do the will of Him that sent Me, and to perfect His work (John 4:32-34); and in another place:
Labor not for the food that perisheth, but for that food that remaineth unto eternal life, which the Son of man shall give unto you; for Him hath God the Father sealed (John 6:27).