6049. And ye shall say, Thy servants have been men of cattle from their youth even until now. That this signifies that from the beginning and as yet they have truths from which is good, is evident from the signification of "men of cattle," as being truths from which is good (see n. 6016, 6045); and from the signification of "from their youth even until now," as being from the beginning and as yet. In regard to "cattle" signifying truths from which is good, be it known that "cattle" are all beasts of burden greater and less, in both the flock and the herd, and also camels, horses, mules, and asses. These latter beasts of burden signify such things as relate to truths; but the former, namely, those of the herd and the flock, signify such things as relate to good. Therefore it is that all those beasts of burden in general which are "cattle" signify truths from which is good. The term "cattle" in the original tongue is from a word which also means "acquisition," and "acquisition" in the spiritual sense is also truth from which is good, for the reason that good is acquired by means of truth. But "small cattle" signify interior goods, for these are of the flock, such as lambs, sheep, kids, goats, and rams. "Cattle" also signify truths from which is good in other passages of the Word, as in Isaiah:
Then shall He give the rain of thy seed, wherewith thou shalt sow the land; and the bread of increase; and it shall be fat and rich: in that day shall thy cattle pasture in a broad meadow (Isa. 30:23);
"to pasture" denotes to be instructed in truths and about goods (n. 5201); a "broad meadow" denotes the doctrine of truth; it is called "broad" because "breadth" is truth (n. 3433, 3434, 4482). Thus it is plain that "cattle" are truths from which is good. In Ezekiel:
To bring back thine hand upon the wastes that are inhabited, and upon the people that are gathered out of the nations, working with cattle and possession, that dwell upon the navel of the earth (Ezek. 38:12);
where in like manner "cattle" denote truths through which is good; and "possession" denotes good.