(AC) - A Disclosure of the Hidden Treasures of Heaven Contained in the Holy Scripture or Word of the Lord, Together with Amazing Things Seen in the World of Spirits and in the Heaven of Angels

AC 911

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911. As to "the creeping thing that creeps" signifying like corresponding things in the external man, the case is this. In the regenerated man external things correspond to internal things, that is, do their bidding. External things are reduced to obedience when man is being regenerated, and he then becomes an image of heaven. But before man has been regenerated, external things rule over internal, and he is then an image of hell. Order consists in celestial things ruling over spiritual things, through these over natural things, and through these over corporeal things; but when corporeal and natural things rule over spiritual and celestial things, order is destroyed, and then the man is an image of hell; and therefore the Lord restores order by means of regeneration, and then the man becomes an image of heaven. Thus does the Lord draw a man out of hell, and thus does He uplift him to heaven.
[2] A few words shall be said about the correspondence of the external man to the internal. Every regenerated man is a kind of little heaven, that is, he is an effigy or image of the universal heaven, and therefore in the Word his internal man is called "heaven." There is such order in heaven that the Lord rules spiritual things through celestial things, and natural things through spiritual things, and in this way He rules the universal heaven as one man, for which reason heaven is called the Grand Man and there is the like order in everyone who is in heaven. Man too, when like this, is a little heaven, or, what is the same, he is a kingdom of the Lord, because the kingdom of the Lord is in him; and then in him external things correspond to internal, that is, they obey them, just as they do in heaven; for in the heavens (which are three, and all of which together stand related as one man) spirits constitute the external man, angelic spirits the interior man, and angels the internal man (n. 459).
[3] It is the reverse with those who make life consist solely in corporeal things, that is, in cupidities, pleasures, appetites, and matters of sense, perceiving no delight other than that which is of the love of self and of the world, that is to say, which is of hatred against all who do not favor and serve them. With such, because corporeal and natural things rule over spiritual and celestial things, there is not only no correspondence or obedience of external things, but the very reverse, and thus order is utterly destroyed; and because order is so destroyed, they cannot be other than images of hell.


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