8928. And Moses came near unto the thick darkness where God was. That this signifies the conjunction still of the truth of spiritual good with truth Divine, is evident from the representation of Moses, as being truth Divine beneath heaven conjoined with truth Divine in heaven, consequently mediating (see n. 8760, 8787, 8805), thus the truth of spiritual good, for this is truth Divine beneath heaven, in which truth is the spiritual church that is represented by the sons of Israel-this truth is represented by Moses as the head of that church (n. 7041); from the signification of "coming near," as being conjunction, for to come near unto the Divine is to be conjoined therewith; and from the signification of "thick darkness," as being truth Divine relatively to those who are of the spiritual church, also relatively to that people which Moses was in charge of as their leader. That truth Divine is thick darkness to that church and that people, is because they are not in any light in respect to truths Divine.
 In the first place, those who are of the spiritual church believe that they are in light; but that they are in obscurity, nay, in thick darkness, in respect to truth Divine, is evident from the fact that they do not know from any internal perception that what the church says is true, but merely from the fact that the church says so; and this they confirm with themselves whether it be false or true; and he who is not in any internal perception concerning truth Divine is in thick darkness, or what is the same thing, to him Divine truth is thick darkness. For example, they who are of the spiritual church do not know, nor desire to know, that there is any internal sense of the Word; and if perchance they were to believe it, it would not be from any internal perception that it is so, but from persuasion from some other source.
 To take another example: they who are of the spiritual church say that faith is the only means of salvation, even without charity and its goods. This they believe because the church says so, nor do they come to such a light of perception as to perceive that there is no faith except where there is charity, and that the one belongs to the other as consort to consort; consequently that charity is an essential of the church, because it is of good. From this also it is plain in what obscurity, or in what thick darkness, the spiritual church is. And because they are in this thick darkness they divide the church into as many churches as there are diverse doctrines concerning the truths of faith; which they would not do if they were in light. For he who is in light never doubts, still less denies, that love to the Lord and charity toward the neighbor are essentials of the church, and that upon them are based all the truths of the Word, consequently all the truths of faith. The case is similar with all the other truths which hang upon this and are called truths of faith. (But these things have been more plainly shown above, n. 2708, 2715, 2831, 2849, 2935, 2937, 3241, 3246, 6289, 6427, 6865, 6945, 7233. That they who are of the spiritual church do not attain unto the first threshold of the wisdom, or unto the first ray of light, in which they are who are of the celestial church, see n. 2718, 3833, 6500.)
 Another reason why Moses is said to have entered into thick darkness when he came near unto God, is that Moses as a leader represented the Israelitish and Jewish people, which was in such thick darkness concerning internal truths as to be wholly ignorant of them, for they made everything of worship and everything Divine to consist in external things. This is the reason why to them the Divine was thick darkness; for it is known to everyone that the Divine is never in darkness, but in light, for the Divine is light itself; and therefore when it is called "thick darkness" it is relatively to those who are in no light, for unto such the Divine truths make the light of heaven appear no otherwise; because they are not believed, and are even denied. And the Divine appears unto everyone according to the quality of his life and faith, consequently as light to those who are in light, and as thick darkness to those who are in thick darkness. (That the Israelitish and Jewish people was of such a quality, see n. 3479, 3769, 4281, 4293, 4307, 4314, 4316, 4433, 4680, 4825, 4832, 4844, 4847, 4865, 4903, 6304; also that the Lord appeared unto them upon Mount Sinai in smoke, in a cloud, and in thick darkness, in accordance with their quality, n. 1891, 6832, 8814, 8819.)