957. Verse 18. For I testify unto everyone that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, if anyone shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book, signifies that they who read and know the truths of doctrine of this book, now opened by the Lord, and yet acknowledge any other God than the Lord, and any other faith than in Him, by adding anything whereby they may destroy these two things, cannot do otherwise than perish from the falsities and evils, which are signified by the plagues described in this book. "To hear the words of the prophecy of this book" signifies to read and know the truths of doctrine of this book, now opened by the Lord, see above (n. 944); by "adding to them" is signified to add anything whereby they may destroy those truths, as will be seen presently; by "the plagues written in this book," are signified the falsities and evils which are signified by "the plagues written in this book" (of which chapters 15-16).
That "plagues" signify the falsities and evils which those have who adore the beast of the dragon, and the false prophet, may be seen (n. 456, 657, 673, 676-677, 683, 690-691, 699, 708, 718); the beast of the dragon, and the false prophet are they who make faith alone without good works saving.
 There are two things in this prophetic book, to which all its contents refer; the first is, that no other God is to be acknowledged but the Lord, and the other, that no other faith is to be acknowledged but faith in the Lord; he who knows these, and yet adds anything with intent to destroy them, cannot be otherwise than in falsities and evils, and must perish from them, because from no other God but the Lord, and by no other faith but faith in the Lord, is given the good which is of love, and the truth which is of faith, and thence the felicity of eternal life, as the Lord Himself teaches in many places in the Evangelists, see above (n. 553).
 That this is signified, and not that God will add the plagues described in chapters 15 and 16 upon him who adds anything to the words of the prophecy of this book, anyone may see from his own judgment. For an innocent person might do this, and many might likewise do it with a good end, and also from ignorance of what is signified; for Revelation has been hitherto like a closed or mystic book, wherefore anyone may see, that the meaning is, that nothing is to be added or taken away, which destroys the truths of doctrine in this book now opened by the Lord, which truths refer to those two; for which reason also, these words follow in a series after "Jesus sent His angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the bright and morning Star. And the Spirit and the Bride say, Come, and let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that thirsteth come; and whosoever will let him take the water of life freely" (verses 16-17). By which is signified, that the Lord will come in His Divine Human, and give eternal life to those who acknowledge Him; wherefore these words follow likewise in a series: "He which testifieth these things, saith, Surely, I come quickly. Amen. Even so come, Lord Jesus" (verse 20); from which it is plain that nothing else is meant. "To add" is also a prophetic word signifying to destroy (as in Ps. 120:2, and in other places). From these things the signification of this and the following verse may be seen.