(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 986

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986. The fear of you and the terror of you. That this signifies the dominion of the internal man, "fear" having reference to evils, and "terror" to falsities, is evident from the state of the regenerate man. The state of man before regeneration is such that cupidities and falsities, which are of the external man, continually predominate, and hence arises a combat; but after regeneration the internal man has dominion over the external, that is, over its cupidities and falsities, and then the man is in fear of evils and in terror of falsities, both of which are contrary to conscience, and to act in opposition to this affects him with horror. Howbeit, it is not the internal but the external man that fears evils and dreads falsities, wherefore it is here said "let the fear of you and the terror of you be upon every beast of the earth, and upon every bird of the heaven" that is, upon all cupidities, here signified by "beasts" and upon all falsities, here meant by the "bird of heaven." This "fear" and this "terror" appear as if they were the man's own, but they arise from the following cause. As has been previously stated, there are with every man at least two angels, through whom he has communication with heaven, and two evil spirits, through whom he has communication with hell. When the angels rule-as is the case with the regenerate man-then the attendant evil spirits dare not attempt to do anything contrary to what is good and true, because they are in bonds; for, on their attempting to do anything evil, or to speak what is false-that is, to excite it-they are instantly seized with a kind of infernal fear and terror. This fear and terror are what are perceived in the man as a fear and terror for what is contrary to conscience; and therefore as soon as he does or speaks anything contrary to conscience, he comes into temptation, and into the pangs of conscience, that is, into a kind of infernal torment. As to "fear" being predicated of evils, and "terror" of falsities, the case is this: the spirits with a man do not so much fear to do evils as they do to speak falsities, because man is born again and receives conscience through the truths of faith, and therefore the spirits are not allowed to excite false things. With everyone of them there is nothing but evil, so that they are in evil; their very nature, and all their effort therefrom is evil; and since they are in evil, and their proper life consists in evil, they are pardoned for doing evil when they are serving any use. But it is not permitted them to speak anything false, and this in order that they may learn what is true, and thus so far as possible be amended, so that they may serve some low use; but concerning this subject, of the Lord's Divine mercy, more hereafter. Similar is the case with the regenerate man, for his conscience is formed of the truths of faith, and therefore his conscience is a conscience of what is right, what is false being to him the very evil of life, because it is contrary to the truth of faith. It was otherwise with the man of the Most Ancient Church, who had perception. He perceived evil of life as evil, and falsity of faith as falsity.


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