(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 663

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663. Third Memorable Relation:
I was once in the midst of angels and heard their conversation. It was about intelligence and wisdom, to the effect that man has no other feeling or perception than that these are in himself, and therefore that whatever he wills and thinks is from himself, and yet no least part of these is from man, except the ability to receive them. Among other things that they said was this, that the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in the garden of Eden, signified the belief that intelligence and wisdom are from man; and that the tree of life signified that intelligence and wisdom are from God; and because Adam by the persuasion of the serpent ate of the former tree, believing that thus he had become or would become as God, he was driven out of the garden and condemned.
[2] While the angels were engaged in this conversation, there came two priests and also a man who in the world had been a royal ambassador, and I told them what I had heard about intelligence and wisdom from the angels; hearing which the three began to dispute about these, and also about prudence, whether they were from God or from man. The dispute was warm. The three believed alike that they were from man, because this is the testimony of sensation itself and of perception therefrom; but the priests, who at the time were influenced by theological zeal, insisted that nothing of intelligence or wisdom, and therefore nothing of prudence, is from man, and this they confirmed by the following passages from the Word:
A man can take nothing, except it be given him from heaven (John 3:27).
Also by this:
Jesus said to His disciples, Without Me ye are unable to do anything (John 15:5).
[3] Then, because the angels perceived that although the priests talked so, they still in heart believed the same as the royal ambassador, they said to them, "Lay aside your garments, and put on the garments of ministers of state, and believe that you are such." They did so; and then they thought from their interior selves, and spoke according to the opinions which they inwardly cherished, which were, that all intelligence and wisdom dwell in man and are his; and they said, "Who has ever felt the influx of these from God?" And they looked at one another, and were convinced.
It is peculiar to the spiritual world that a spirit thinks himself to be such as his dress is. This is because in that world the understanding clothes everyone.
[4] At that moment a tree appeared near them, and it was said to them, "That is the tree of the knowledge of good and evil; be careful not to eat of it." Nevertheless, infatuated by their own intelligence, they burned with the lust to eat of it, and said to one another, "Why not? Is it not good fruit?" And they drew near and ate of it.
When the royal ambassador observed this he joined them, and they became hearty friends; and holding each other by the hand they together went the way of their own intelligence which tended towards hell. But I saw them brought back therefrom, because they were not yet prepared.


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