5890. For God did send me before you to make to live. That this signifies spiritual life imparted to them of Providence, is evident from the signification of "making to live," as being spiritual life (of which in what follows); and from the signification of "God did send me before you," as being of Providence. That it was of Providence is evident from Joseph's dreams, in which it was foretold that his brethren should bow themselves down to him, and also his father, which would not have been foreseen unless it had been provided. That by "making to live" is signified spiritual life, or new life through regeneration, may be seen from this alone-that the spiritual of the Word cannot be anything else. There is natural life and there is spiritual life. Natural life is meant in the literal sense of the Word, but spiritual life in the internal sense; and moreover in many passages by "to make to live," and by "life," is meant in the literal sense spiritual life itself; as in Ezekiel:
When I shall say to the wicked, Dying thou shalt die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to dissuade the wicked from his evil way, to make him live (Ezek. 3:18).
Ye have profaned Me among My people for handfuls of barley and for pieces of bread, to slay the souls that should not die and to make live the souls that should not live. Ye strengthen the hands of the wicked, that he should not return from his evil way, by making him live (Ezek. 13:19, 22).
After two days Jehovah will make us live; and in the third day He will set us up, that we may live before Him (Hos. 6:2).
Unless I had believed to see good in the land of life (Ps. 27:13).
To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God (Rev. 2:7).
In John the Evangelist:
As the Father raiseth up the dead and maketh them live, even so the Son also maketh live whom He will (John 5:21).
It is the spirit that maketh to live; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you are spirit, and are life (John 6:63).
In these passages "to make to live," and "life," manifestly denote spiritual life, which is life in heaven, and which is also called simply "life," as in Matthew:
Strait [is the gate] and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it (Matt. 7:14);
"to enter into life" denotes to enter into heaven (Matt. 18:8, 9; 19:17; Mark 9:43, 45, 47; John 5:24).