712. Verse 19. And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell, signifies that that Church as to doctrine was altogether destroyed by them, and likewise all the heresies which have emanated from it. That the doctrine of the church is signified by "a city," or what is the same, the church as to doctrine, may be seen above (n. 194, 501, 502): hence by "the cities of the nations" are signified the heretical doctrines or heresies which have emanated from it, which are many. By "being divided into three parts" is signified to be altogether destroyed; for by "being divided" in the Word is signified to be dissipated, because in that case they do not cohere, and by "three" is signified all and the whole (n. 400, 505); hence by "being divided into three parts" is signified to be altogether destroyed. By "falling," which is said of the cities of the nations, is also signified to be destroyed. It is said that "the city was divided into three parts," and that "the cities of the nations fell," because an earthquake was mentioned just before, in which such effects have place. By "the great city" is meant the great city spoken of above (chap. 11:8), which is there called "Sodom and Egypt," as may be seen above (n. 501-504). The reason why "a city" signifies doctrine, and thence "cities" signify doctrinals, is, because by "land," and particularly by "the land of Canaan," is signified the church; and since the church is a church from doctrine and according to it, therefore by "cities" are signified doctrinals. These were also taught in cities, because in them were synagogues, and in Jerusalem was the temple; hence it is that by Jerusalem is signified the church as to doctrine in a universal sense.