791. Verse 21. And one strong angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast it into the sea, saying, Thus with violence shall that great city, Babylon, be thrown down, and shall not be found anymore signifies that by a strong influx of the Lord out of heaven that religious persuasion with all its adulterated truths of the Word will be cast headlong into hell, and will not at all appear to the angels anymore. By "one strong angel took up," a powerful influx of the Lord out of heaven is signified; for by "an angel" is signified the Lord, and His operation, which is effected through heaven (n. 258, 415, 465, 649); here, because he is called a "strong angel," and "he took up a stone like a great millstone," powerful operation is signified, which is a powerful influx. By "a stone like a great millstone" the adulterated and profaned truths of the Word are signified; for by "a stone" truth is signified, and by "mill" is signified the searching for, investigation, and confirmation of truth from the Word (see n. 794); but here the adulteration and profanation of the truth of the Word, as it is said of Babylon. By "casting into the sea" is signified into hell. By "thus with violence shall that great city, Babylon, be thrown down," is signified that thus that religious persuasion was to be cast into hell. By "it was not found anymore" is signified that it will no longer appear to the angels.
 This is signified because all from that religious persuasion who are in its evils and falsities come indeed after death into the world of spirits; for that world is like a forum in which all are at first gathered together; and it is like the stomach into which all foods are first collected. The stomach also corresponds to that world. But at this day, because it is after the Last Judgment, which was accomplished in the year 1757, it is not allowed them, as before, to tarry in that world, and to form to themselves as it were heavens; but as soon as they arrive there, they are sent to societies which are in conjunction with the hells, into which also they are cast from time to time; and thus care is taken by the Lord, that they shall no longer appear to the angels. It is this, therefore, which is signified by that city, that is, that religious persuasion "being found no more."
 Since the truth of the Word adulterated is signified by "the millstone," and by "the sea," hell, the Lord therefore says:
He that shall offend one of the little ones that believe in Me, it were better for him that an ass millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were immersed into the depth of the sea (Matt. 18:6).
It is called "a millstone" in Mark 9:42; Luke 17:2. Of Babel nearly the same is said in Jeremiah:
When thou hast made an end of reading this book, thou shalt bind a stone upon it, and shalt cast it into the midst of the Euphrates, and shalt say, Thus shall Babel be submerged, and shall not rise again (Jer. 51:63-64).
By "the midst of the Euphrates" is meant the same as by "the sea," because the river Euphrates bounded and separated Assyria, where Babel was, from the land of Canaan.