(TCR) - True Christian Religion: Containing the Whole Theology of the New Church Predicted by the Lord in Daniel 7:13-14 and Revelation 21:1-2

TCR 135

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135. Second Memorable Relation:
One morning as I awoke from sleep, the sun of the spiritual world appeared to me in its glory; and as far below it as our earth is from its sun I saw the heavens; and presently there were heard from the heavens words ineffable, the sum of which found utterance in this declaration, "There is one God, who is Man; and His abode is in that sun." This utterance passed down through the middle heavens to the lowest, and from that into the world of spirits where I was; and I perceived that the angels' idea of the one God, in its descent by degrees, was changed into the idea of three Gods. Observing this I went forward to speak with those whose thought was of three Gods, saying, "What a monstrous idea! Where did you get it?"
They replied, "We think of three from our way of conceiving of the Triune God; nevertheless this idea does not fall into our utterance. When we speak we always declare emphatically that God is one. If there is a different idea in our minds, let it be, provided it does not come forth and sever the idea of the unity of God in our speech. Still it does come forth from time to time, because it is within; and if at such times we should speak plainly we should declare that there are three Gods. But we guard against this, lest we should be laughed at by those hearing us."
[2] Then they spoke openly from their thought, saying, "Are there not three Gods, since there are three Divine persons, each of whom is God? We cannot think otherwise when a leader of our church, speaking from his collection of holy dogmas, ascribes to one creation, to another redemption, and to the third sanctification; and when furthermore he ascribes to them certain attributes, to each one His own, which he asserts are incommunicable; and these include not only creation, redemption, and sanctification, but also imputation, mediation, and operation. Is there not, then, one who creates us, and He also imputes; and is there not another who redeems us, and He also mediates; and a third who effects the mediated imputation, and He also sanctifies? Who does not know that the Son of God was sent into the world by God the Father to redeem the human race, and thus become the Expiator, Mediator, Propitiator, and Intercessor? And as He was one with the Son of God from eternity, are not the Father and Son two distinct persons? And as these two are in heaven, one sitting at the right hand of the other, must there not be a third person to carry out in the world what is decreed in heaven?"
[3] Hearing this I was silent, and thought to myself, O what folly! They have no idea of what is meant in the Word by mediation.
And presently, at the Lord's command, three angels descended from heaven and were associated with me, in order that I might speak from interior perception with those who were in the idea of three Gods, particularly in respect to mediation, intercession, propitiation, and expiation, which they attribute to the second person, that is, the Son, but not until after He had become Man; and He became Man many centuries after creation, and during this time these four means of salvation did not exist, and thus God the Father was not propitiated, no expiation was made for the human race, and no one was sent from heaven to intercede and mediate.
[4] Then from an inspiration that came upon me I spoke with them, saying, "Draw near, as many of you as can, and hear what is meant in the Word by mediation, intercession, expiation, and propitiation. These are the four predicates of the grace of the one God in His Human. God the Father can in no way be approached, nor can He approach any man, because He is the Infinite, and is in His own Esse which is Jehovah; and if from His Esse He were to approach man He would consume him as fire consumes wood and reduces it to ashes. This is evident from what He said to Moses when Moses wished to see God:
That no man could see Him and live (Ex. 33:20). And the Lord says:
That no man hath seen God at any time, except the Son who is in the bosom of the Father (John 1:18; Matt. 11:27).
That no one hath either heard the Father's voice or seen His shape (John 5:37).
We read, indeed, that Moses saw Jehovah face to face, and spoke with Him mouth to mouth; but this was done through an angel, as was the case also with Abraham and Gideon. Such, then, being the nature of God the Father in Himself, it pleased Him to assume a Human, and in that to become accessible to men, and thus hear them and speak with them; and that Human is what is called the Son of God; and it is that which mediates, intercedes, propitiates, and expiates. I will therefore explain the signification of these four things which are predicated of the Human of God the Father. [5] Mediation means that this Human is the medium through which man is enabled to approach God the Father, and God the Father to approach man, and to so teach and lead man that he may be saved. Therefore the Son of God, by which is meant the Human of God the Father, is called the Savior, and in the world, Jesus, that is, Salvation. Intercession means unceasing mediation; for love itself, which is the source of mercy, clemency, and grace, unceasingly intercedes, that is, mediates in behalf of those who keep His commandments, whom He loves. Expiation means the removal of the sins into which man would rush if Jehovah unclothed should be approached. Propitiation means the operation of clemency and grace to prevent man's bringing himself by sin into condemnation; also protection, to prevent him from profaning holiness. This was the signification of the mercy-seat over the ark in the tabernacle. [6] It is known that in the Word God has spoken according to appearances, as that He becomes angry, takes revenge, tempts, punishes, casts into hell, damns, and even does what is evil; when in fact He is angry with no one, neither does He take revenge, tempt, punish, cast into hell, or damn. All these things are as far from God as hell is from heaven, and infinitely farther; consequently they are forms of speech to express the appearance. Expiation, propitiation, intercession, and mediation, are also forms of speech to express the appearance in another sense, since these are to be understood as predications of approach to God and of receiving grace from God through His Human. But these terms not having been understood, men have divided God into three, and upon these three have based the entire doctrine of the church, and have thus falsified the Word. From this has come 'the abomination of desolation' foretold by the Lord in Daniel, and again in Matthew 24."
When I had said this the crowd of spirits withdrew from about me, and I noticed that those whose thought was actually of three Gods looked towards hell; while those whose thought was of one God, in whom is a Divine trinity, and that this trinity is in the Lord God the Savior, looked towards heaven; and these beheld the sun of heaven, in which Jehovah in His Human dwells.


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