78. BRIEF ANALYSIS.
In the prophetic Word, the like things are said of the "sun," "moon," and "stars," as here (Matt. 24:29). Thus in Isaiah:
Behold, the cruel day of Jehovah cometh; the stars of the heavens and the constellations thereof shall not shine with their light, the sun shall be darkened at his rising, and the moon shall not cause her light to shine (13:9, 10).
When I shall put thee out, I will cover the heavens, and make the stars thereof dark; I will cover the sun with a cloud, and the moon shall not cause her light to shine, and I will give darkness upon thy land (32:7, 8).
The day of Jehovah cometh, a day of darkness, the sun and moon shall not cause their light to shine, and the stars shall withdraw their shining (2:1, 2, 10).
In the same:
The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great day of Jehovah cometh (3:4).
The day of Jehovah is near in the valley of decision; the sun and moon are darkened (4:14, 15).
The fourth angel sounded, and the third part of the sun was smitten, and the third part of the stars, and the day shone not for a third part of it (7:12).
And in another place:-
The sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood (6:12).
In all these passages it treats of the last time of the Jewish Church, which was when the Lord came into the world; in like manner here in Matthew and in Revelation, only in reference to the last time of the Christian Church, when the Lord is to come again, but in the Word, which is Himself, and in which He is; wherefore, immediately after those words (Matt. 24:29), it follows:
And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man coming in the clouds of the heavens (verse 30).
By "the sun" in the above passages is meant love; by "the moon" faith; and by "the stars" the knowledges of good and truth; and by "the powers of the heavens" those three as the supports and firmaments of the heavens where the angels are, and of the churches where men are; by the above, therefore, collected into one sense, is meant, that there would be no love, nor faith, nor knowledges of good and truth, remaining in the Christian Church, in the last time thereof, when it draws to its end. That "the sun" signifies love, has been shown in The Apocalypse Revealed (n. 53, 54, 413, 796, 831, 961). That "the moon" signifies faith (n. 53, 332, 413, 423, 533). That "the stars" signify the knowledges of good and truth (n. 51, 74, 333, 408, 419, 954).