(LF) - Teachings about Life for the New Jerusalem: Drawn from the Ten Commandments

LF 69

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69. As the kinds of murder mentioned above lie inwardly hidden in man from his birth, as has been said, and at the same time thefts of every kind, and false witness of every kind, together with the concupiscences for them (of which we shall speak farther on), it is evident that unless the Lord provided means of reformation, a man must perish everlastingly. The means of reformation provided by the Lord are as follows: That man is born into total ignorance; that when newly born he is kept in a state of external innocence; a little after in a state of external charity; and later in a state of external friendship; but in proportion as he comes into the exercise of thought from his own understanding, he is kept in a certain freedom of acting according to reason. This is the state that has been described above (n. 19), and the description shall be here repeated for the sake of what is to follow:
So long as a man is in this world he is midway between hell and heaven; hell is below him, and heaven is above him; and he is kept in freedom to turn himself to either the one or the other; if he turns to hell he turns away from heaven; if he turns to heaven he turns away from hell. Or what is the same, so long as a man is in this world he stands midway between the Lord and the devil, and is kept in freedom to turn himself to either the one or the other; if he turns to the devil he turns away from the Lord; if he turns to the Lord he turns away from the devil. Or what is again the same, so long as a man is in this world he is midway between evil and good, and is kept in freedom to turn himself to either the one or the other; if he turns to evil he turns away from good; if he turns to good he turns away from evil. (See also what follows this, n. 20-22.)

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