(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 977

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As the subject here treated of is the regenerate man, a few words shall be said about what he is relatively to the unregenerate man, for in this way both will be apprehended. With the regenerate man there is a conscience of what is good and true, and he does good and thinks truth from conscience; the good which he does being the good of charity, and the truth which he thinks being the truth of faith. The unregenerate man has no conscience, or if any, it is not a conscience of doing good from charity, and of thinking truth from faith, but is based on some love that regards himself or the world, wherefore it is a spurious or false conscience. With the regenerate man there is joy when he acts according to conscience, and anxiety when he is forced to do or think contrary to it; but it is not so with the unregenerate, for very many such men do not know what conscience is, much less what it is to do anything either according or contrary to it, but only what it is to do the things that favor their loves. This is what gives them joy, and when they do what is contrary to their loves, this is what gives them anxiety. With the regenerate man there is a new will and a new understanding, and this new will and new understanding are his conscience, that is, they are in his conscience, and through this the Lord works the good of charity and the truth of faith. With an unregenerate man there is not will, but instead of will there is cupidity, and a consequent proneness to every evil; neither is there understanding, but mere reasoning and a consequent falling away to every falsity. With the regenerate man there is celestial and spiritual life; but with the unregenerate man there is only corporeal and worldly life, and his ability to think and understand what is good and true is from the Lord's life through the remains before spoken of, and it is from this that he has the faculty of reflecting. With the regenerate the internal man has the dominion, the external being obedient and submissive; but with the unregenerate the external man rules, the internal being quiescent, as if it had no existence. The regenerate man knows, or has a capacity of knowing on reflection, what the internal man is, and what the external; but of these the unregenerate man is altogether ignorant, nor can he know them even if he reflects, since he is unacquainted with the good and truth of faith originating in charity. Hence may be seen what is the quality of the regenerate, and what of the unregenerate man, and that they differ from each other like summer and winter, and light and darkness; wherefore the regenerate is a living, but the unregenerate a dead man.


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