(SS) - Teachings for the New Jerusalem on Sacred Scripture

SS 67

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67. We may now illustrate by an example how from the natural sense in which is the Word with men, the spiritual angels draw forth their own sense, and the celestial angels theirs. Take as an example five commandments of the Decalogue:
Honor thy father and thy mother. By "father and mother" a man understands his father and mother on earth, and all who stand in their place, and by to "honor" he understands to hold in honor and obey them. But a spiritual angel understands the Lord by "father," and the church by "mother," and by to "honor" he understands to love. And a celestial angel understands the Lord's Divine love by "father," and His Divine wisdom by "mother," and by to "honor" to do what is good from him.
[2] Thou shalt not steal. By to "steal" a man understands to steal, defraud, or under any pretext take from his neighbor his goods. A spiritual angel understands to deprive others of their truths of faith and goods of charity by means of falsities and evils. And a celestial angel understands to attribute to himself what is the Lord's, and to claim for himself His righteousness and merit.
[3] Thou shalt not commit adultery. By "committing adultery" a man understands to commit adultery and fornication, to do obscene things, speak lascivious words, and harbor filthy thoughts. A spiritual angel understands to adulterate the goods of the Word, and falsify its truths. And a celestial angel understands to deny the Lord's Divinity and to profane the Word.
[4] Thou shalt not kill. By "killing," a man understands also bearing hatred, and desiring revenge even to the death. A spiritual angel understands to act as a devil and destroy men's souls. And a celestial angel understands to bear hatred against the Lord, and against what is His.
[5] Thou shalt not bear false witness. By "bearing false witness" a man understands also to lie and defame. A spiritual angel understands to say and persuade that what is false is true and what is evil good, and the reverse. And a celestial angel understands to blaspheme the Lord and the Word.
[6] From these examples it may be seen how the spiritual and celestial of the Word are evolved and drawn out from the natural sense in which they are. Wonderful to say, the angels draw out their senses without knowing what the man is thinking about, and yet the thoughts of the angels and of the men make a one by means of correspondences, like end, cause, and effect. Moreover ends actually are in the celestial kingdom, causes in the spiritual kingdom, and effects in the natural kingdom. This conjunction by means of correspondences is such from creation. This then is the source of man's association with angels by means of the Word.


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