905. Verse 16. And the city lieth foursquare, signifies justice in it. The reason why the city was seen "foursquare" is because "a quadrangle" or "a square" signifies what is just, for "a triangle" signifies what is right, all these in the ultimate degree, or the natural. "A quadrangle" or "a square" signifies what is just because it has four sides, and the four sides look towards the four quarters, and to look equally towards the four quarters, is to respect all things from justice; for which reason three gates opened into the city from each quarter, and it is said in Isaiah:
Open ye the gates, that a just nation which keepeth faithfulness may enter in (Isa. 26:2).
"The city lieth foursquare" that the length and breadth thereof might be equal, and by "length" is signified the good of that church, and by "breadth" its truth, and when good and truth are equal, then there is what is just. It is owing to this signification of "a square," that in common discourse a man is said to be "square," who is a man that does not from injustice incline either to this or that party. Because "foursquare" signifies what is just, therefore, the altar of burnt-offering, by which was signified worship from good and thence from celestial truth, was "foursquare" (Exod. 27:1); also the altar of incense, by which was signified worship from good and thence from spiritual truth, was likewise "foursquare" (Exod. 30:1, 2). And also, the breastplate of judgment, in which was the Urim and Thummim, was "foursquare" doubled (Exod. 28:15, 16; 39:9); besides other passages.