(AR) - The Book of the Apocalypse Revealed, Uncovering the Secrets That Were Foretold There and Have Lain Hidden until Now

AR 862

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862. It was said that by "they encompassed the camp of the saints and the beloved city," is signified that they would endeavor to destroy all things of the New Church, both its truths and its goods, and the doctrine itself concerning the Lord and concerning life, as is said in the preceding article. The reason why these are signified, is, because by "the camp of the saints" are signified all the truths and goods of the church which is the New Jerusalem. That "a camp" in the spiritual sense signifies all things of the church which have relation to its truths and goods may appear from the following passages:
The sun and moon were blackened, and the stars withdrew their shining; Jehovah uttered His voice before His army; for His camp is very great, for numberless are they that do His Word (Joel 2:10, 11).
I will encamp about my house because of the army (Zech. 9:8).
God hath scattered the bones of him that encampeth against thee, because God hath rejected them (Ps. 53:5).
The angel of Jehovah encampeth about them that fear Him, and delivereth them (Ps. 34:7).
The angels of God met Jacob, and Jacob said, This is God's camp, therefore he called the name of that place Mahanaim (the two camps) (Gen. 32:2).
Besides other places, as Isa. 29:3; Ezek. 1:24; Ps. 27:3. That by "an army" in the Word are signified the truths and goods of the church, also its falsities and evils, may be seen (n. 447, 826, 833); the same is also signified by "camps."
[2] Since by the sons of Israel, and their twelve tribes, is signified the church as to all its truths and goods (n. 349, 350), they were therefore called "the army of Jehovah" (Exod. 7:4; 12:41, 51); and when they halted and were assembled, they were called "the camp" (as in Lev. 4:12; 8:17; 13:46; 14:8; 16:26, 28; 24:14, 23; Num. 1, 2, 3, 4:5,seq.; 5:2-4; 9:17 to the end; 10:2-8; 11:31, 32; 12:14, 15; 21:10-25; 33:1-49; Deut. 23:9-14; Amos 4:10). From these things it is plain, that by "they encompassed the camp of the saints and the beloved city," is signified that they would endeavor to destroy all the truths and goods of the New Church which is the New Jerusalem, and also its doctrine concerning the Lord and concerning life. The like is signified by this passage in Luke:
When ye shall see Jerusalem encompassed by armies, then know that the devastation is near; at length Jerusalem shall be trodden down by the nations until the times of the nations shall be fulfilled (Luke 21:20, 24).
This is concerning the consummation of the age, which is the last time of the church; by "Jerusalem" is here also signified the church. That "Gog and Magog," that is, they who are in external worship separated from internal worship, will then invade the church, and endeavor to destroy it, is also said in Ezekiel 38:8, 9, 11, 12, 15, 16; 39:2; and that then there will be a New Church from the Lord (39:17, to the end).


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