9184. Endowing he shall endow her to himself for a woman. That this signifies a token of consent to a lawful conjunction, is evident from the signification of a "dowry" and of "endowing," as being a token of consent (see n. 4456); and from the signification of "for a woman," as being to a lawful conjunction, for to take anyone for a woman denotes to be lawfully conjoined. In the spiritual sense an unlawful conjunction is the conjunction of truth with an affection from the delight of self-advantage or from the delight of being honored. In such an affection are they who learn the truths of the church for the sake of these delights. But this conjunction does no harm to those who are afterward regenerated by the Lord, for although these affections remain with them, they are subordinated under the affection of truth for the sake of the good of use and of life; and they serve, for they are in the last place, although at first they appeared to be in the first place. For while a man is being regenerated, the order of his life is inverted. In this manner is lawful conjunction made out of unlawful conjunction.
 That this is possible is because the truths which are of faith enter through the hearing, thus through the external man; and the external man relishes only those things which belong to the world and to self, and which are the delights arising from self-advantage and honors. But when the internal man has been opened by means of regeneration, good from the Lord then flows in through it, and adopts and conjoins with itself the truths of faith which have entered through the external man, and according to this conjunction the order is inverted, that is, what had been in the first place is put in the last. The Lord then draws to Himself all things in the man which belong to life, so that they may look upward. The man then regards as ends those things which belong to the Lord and to heaven; and the Lord Himself as the end for the sake of which are all things; and the former things, which are the delights of self-advantage and of honors, he regards as means to this end. It is known that the means derive their life solely from the end, and that apart from the end they have no life. Thus when the delights of self-advantage and of honors have become means, they then have their life from the life which comes from heaven, that is, through heaven from the Lord; for the end for the sake of which they exist is the Lord. When a man is in such an order of life, matters of self-advantage and honors are then blessings to him; whereas if he is in the inverted order, these things are curses to him. That all things are blessings when a man is in the order of heaven, the Lord teaches in Matthew:
Seek ye first the kingdom of the heavens and His righteousness, and all things shall be added unto you (Matt. 6:33).