(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 9141

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9141. And it shall desolate in the field of another. That this signifies the consuming of the cohering goods, is evident from the signification of "to desolate," as being to deprive through cupidities, thus to consume (of which below); and from the signification of "in the field of another," as being the cohering goods; for "a field" denotes the church, and the things in a field denote goods (see n. 9139); thus those which are "in the field of another," denote the adjacent goods which cohere; for the goods with man are like generations on the earth, and consequently are in various degrees of nearness and coherence (n. 9079). Those which are not in the same house, or together in the same family, but yet are related, are what are meant by being "in the field of another."
[2] That "to desolate" denotes to deprive through cupidities, and thus to consume, is because by the word which is used in the original tongue for "to desolate" is properly signified to set on fire and burn, thus also to feed on and consume. And as this is the derivation of the word, "to desolate" here signifies the consuming that is done by cupidities; for the cupidities in a man are consuming fires. There is in man the fire of life, and the light of life. The fire of life is his love, and the light of life is his faith. The love of good (that is, love to the Lord and love toward the neighbor) makes the fire of life in a good man and in an angel of heaven; and the love of truth and the faith of truth make the light of life in them. But the love of evil (that is, the love of self and the love of the world) makes the fire of life in an evil man and in a spirit of hell; and the love and faith of what is false make the light of life in them. But the love of evil is called in the Word the "burning of fire," because it burns and consumes those things which belong to the love of good and truth. (That the "burning of fire" has this signification, see n. 1297, 1861, 5215, 9055.)
[3] That a consuming by cupidities is signified by this word in the original tongue, is plain from the following passages:
Jehovah will come into judgment with the elders of His people, and the prices thereof. Ye have consumed [set fire to] the vineyard (Isa. 3:14).
The breath of Jehovah, like a river of sulphur, doth consume [burn] it (Isa. 30:33);
"a river of sulphur" denotes falsities from the evils of the love of self and the love of the world (n. 2446).
[4] In Ezekiel:
The inhabitants of the cities of Israel shall go forth, and shall set on fire and burn the weapons, both shield and buckler, with bow and with arrows, and with hand staff and with spear, and they shall kindle a fire with them seven years, that they shall bring no wood out of the field, nor cut down any out of the forests (Ezek. 39:9-10);
thus is described the consuming and desolating of good and truth through cupidities. But who will see this, unless he knows what is signified by "the inhabitants of the cities of Israel," also what by "weapons," "shield," "buckler," "bow with arrows," by "hand staff and spear," by "seven years," and by "wood out of the field, and out of the forests." (That "inhabitants" denote goods, see n. 2268, 2451, 2463, 2712; that "cities" denote truths, and consequently doctrinal things from the Word, n. 2268, 2449, 2943, 3216, 4492; and that "Israel" denotes the church, n. 4286, 6426, 6637.) Consequently "the inhabitants of the cities of Israel" denote the goods of the doctrinal things of the church; and in the opposite sense, these goods turned into evils and falsities. (That "shield," "buckler," and "arrows of the bow" denote truths of doctrine from the Word, whereby there is protection from the falsities of evil, see n. 2686, 2709, 6421; that a "hand staff" denotes the power of truth from good, n. 4876, 7026; in like manner a "spear," but interior power; that "seven years" denote a full state, thus to the full, n. 6508, 8976; thus "to kindle a fire for seven years" denotes to consume to the full through cupidities; "wood out of the field" denotes the interior goods of the church, n. 3720, 8354; "field" being the church, n. 2971, 3766, 7502, 7571; and "wood out of the forests," exterior goods, n. 3220, 9011.) When these things are known it may be known that by the above prophecies is described the consuming of all things of the church through cupidities until nothing of the good and truth of the internal and external church remains, which is signified by "they shall kindle a fire for seven years, so that they shall bring no wood out of the field, nor cut down any out of the forests."
[5] By the same expression is also described the consuming of the good and truth of the church, in Malachi:
Behold the day cometh, burning as an oven, wherein all that sin proudly, and every worker of wickedness, shall be stubble; and the day that cometh shall consume [kindle] them, said Jehovah Zebaoth, which shall leave them neither root nor branch (Mal. 4:1);
"the day that cometh" denotes the last time of the church, when the loves of self and of the world shall reign, and shall consume all the truths and goods of the church, until nothing survives in the man's internal and external, which is signified by "shall leave them neither root nor branch." The "root" of good and truth is in man's internal, and the "branch" is in his external. From this then it is evident that "to desolate" signifies to consume through cupidities, as is the case elsewhere in the Word.


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