7990. For leading them forth from the land of Egypt. That this signifies liberation from spiritual captivity, is evident from the signification of "leading forth," as being to liberate; and from the signification of "the land of Egypt," as being where they were infested by the evil, thus where they were in spiritual captivity, according to what has been adduced (n. 6854, 6914, 7035, 7091, 7828, 7932a, 7985). They are said to be in spiritual captivity who as to their interiors are kept by the Lord in good and truth, but as to their exteriors are kept by hell in evil and falsity, whence there is a combat of the external man with the internal. In this state are those kept who are being infested; and then the Lord by influx through the interiors fights for them against the afflux of evil and falsity from the hells. They are then kept as it were captive, for through influx from the Lord they desire to be in good and truth, but through the afflux from the hells they seem to themselves not to be able. This combat takes place to the end that the external man may be reduced to obedience to the internal, and thus natural things be made subordinate to spiritual things.