« ÎnapoiContinuă »
"in proportion to the depths to which they have fallen, "n. 4623, 6311. That the sphere of infernal spirits con"joins itself with the sensual principle of man from behind, n. 6312. That they who have reasoned from sensual things only, and thence against the genuine truths of the church, were called by the ancients, serpents of the tree “of knowledge, n. 195, 196, 197, 6398, 6399, 10313. "Moreover the sensual principle or faculty of man, and "the sensual man, are described, n. 10236: and the ex"tension of things sensual in man, n. 9731. That sen"sual things ought to be in the last place, and not in the "first, and that in a wise and intelligent man they are in "the last place, and subject to the interiors; but that in "a foolish man, they are in the first place, and govern; "these are they who are properly called sensual, n. 5077, 5125, 5128, 7645. If sensual things are in the last place, a way is opened by them to the understanding, "and truths are corrected by a mode of extraction, n. "5580. That those sensual things are in close contact "with the world, and admit the things which flow from "the world, and, as it were, sift them, n. 9726. That man, by means of those sensual things, communicates "with the world, and, by means of rational things, with “heaven, n. 4009. That sensual things supply such as "are subservient to the interiors of the mind, n. 5077, "5081. That there are sensual things which minister to "the intellectual part; and such as minister to the voluntary part, n. 5077. That unless the thought be elevated "above sensual things, man enjoys but little wisdom, n. "5089. That a wise man thinks above sensual things, n. 5089, 5094. That man, when his thought is elevated "above sensual things, comes into a clearer light, and, at length, into heavenly light, n. 6183, 6313, 6315, 9407, "9730, 9922. That elevation above sensual things, and "abstraction from them, was known to the ancients, n. "6313. That man, by his spirit, might perceive the "things which are done in the spiritual world, if he could "be withdrawn from sensual things, and be elevated into "the light of heaven by the Lord, n. 4622. The reason "is, because the body does not think, but the spirit of man
“in the body; and in proportion as it thinks in the body, "in the same proportion it thinks obscurely and in dark"ness; and in proportion as it does not think in the body, "in the same proportion it thinks clearly and in the light; "but in spiritual things, n. 4622, 6614, 6622. That the "sensual scientific principle is the ultimate of the understanding, and sensual delight, the ultimate of the will, "n. 9996. What the difference is between the sensual "things common to beasts, and the sensual things not "common to them, n. 10236. That there are sensual men not wicked, by reason that their interiors are not "closed correspondently, concerning whose state in an"other life, see n. 6311."
425. "And unto them were given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power," signifies, the power of persuading that their falses are truths. By a scorpion is signified deadly persuasion; and, by a scorpion of the earth, persuasion in things relating to the church; the earth signifying the church, n. 285; for a scorpion, when he stings a man, induces a stupor upon the limbs, which, if it be not cured, is followed by death; their persuasion produces a corresponding effect upon the understanding. Such is also the signification of scorpion in these passages: "And thou, son of man, be not afraid of them, neither be afraid of their words, though briars and thorns be with thee, and thou dost dwell among scorpions, nor be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house," Ezek. ii. 6. Jesus said unto the seventy whom he sent forth, "Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and on all the power of the enemy; and nothing shall by any means hurt you," Luke x. 10.
426. "And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree; but only those men who had not the seal of God in their foreheads," signifies, the divine providence of the Lord, that they should not be able to take away any truth and good of faith, nor any affection and perception of them, from any others than such as are not in charity and thence not in faith. By its being commanded them, is signified the Lord's divine providence,
because it was commanded from heaven; by not hurting the grass of the earth, nor any green thing, is signified not to be able to take away any truth and good of faith; for by grass, is signified the truth of faith, which is what first springs up in man, n. 401; and, by green thing, is signified the living principle of faith, which is derived from good, n. 401; by not hurting any tree, is signified not to be able to take away the affection and perception of truth and good; for by a tree, is signified man as to these qualities, n. 400; by those men who had not the seal of God in their foreheads, are signified they who are not in charity, and thence in faith; for the forehead signifies love and charity, n. 347; and to have the seal, signifies to know and distinguish them from others, n. 345. The reason why they who have confirmed faith alone, to the very arcana of justification and salvation by it, cannot take away any truth and good of faith, nor the affection and perception of them, from any but those who are not in the faith of charity, is, because they are scarcely comprehended by any one but the priest who teaches and preaches them. The layman hears them, but they enter in at one ear and go out at the other; which the priest himself, who utters those arcana, may know of a certainty from this circumstance, that he himself spent the whole force of his genius in acquiring a knowledge of them in his youth, and afterwards in retaining them in adult age, likewise from his considering himself as a man of extraordinary learning: what then must be the case with a layman, who simply thinks of faith from charity, when he hears these mysteries? From what has been said, it may be seen, that faith alone, as being competent to justification, is the faith of the clergy, and not of the laity, save such of them as live unconcernedly, who imbibe no more from their arcana than that faith alone saves; that they cannot do good from themselves, nor fulfill the law; and that Christ suffered for them; besides some other universals of a similar nature.
427. "And to them it was given that they should not kill them, but that they should be tormented five months," signifies, that from the divine providence of the Lord, they
are not able to take away from those, who are not in the faith of charity, the faculty of understanding and willing what is true and good, but that they should only be able to induce stupor for a short time. By its being given them, is signified that it is so ordered from the divine providence of the Lord, as above; not to have power to kill them, signifies not to be able to take away from those who are not in the faith of charity, the faculty of understanding and willing what is true and good, for when this faculty is taken away, man is spiritually killed; by tormenting them five months, is signified to induce stupor for a short time; five signifies a little, or, a short time, and to torment, signifies to induce stupor, because this is what is signified by a scorpion, n. 425; and by the torment, as it were, of a scorpion, is signified as follows, n. 428. That the faculty of understanding truth and of willing it, or rationality and liberty, cannot be taken away from man, is amply shown in the Angelic Wisdom concerning the Divine Providence, n. 73, 74, 82-96, 92-98, 138-149, 322. That five months signify a little, and, a short time, is owing to the signification of five, as denoting a little; for times, whether they be hours, days, weeks, or months, or years, do not signify time, but state; and numbers determine its quality, n. 4, 10, 348, 947. That five signifies something, and also a little, may appear from these places: "A thousand shall flee at the rebuke of five," Isaiah xxx. 17. "And five of you shall chase a hundred," Levit. xxvi. 8. Jesus said, "The kingdom of heaven is like unto ten virgins, of which five were wise, and five were foolish," Matt. xxv. 1, 2. By ten virgins are signified all in the church; by five are signified a certain part or some of them. The like is signified by ten and five in the parable where there were given unto the servants talents that they should trade, and one with his talent gained ten talents, and another, five, Luke xix. 13-20. Ten talents signify much, and five talents, a little; not to mention other passages; as in Isaiah xvii. 6, xix. 18, 19, Matt. xiv. 15-22.
428. "And their torment was as the torment of a
scorpion when he striketh a man," signifies, that this is from their power of persuasion. This follows from what was said, n. 427; for by torment is signified the stupor, which their persuasion induces upon the understanding, as the scorpion does upon the body when he stings it; a scorpion signifies that faculty of persuasion, n. 425. In the spiritual world there exists a power of persuasion which takes away the understanding of truth, and induces stupor, and thus distress, upon the mind; but this power of persuasion is unknown in the natural world.
429. "And in those days shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them," signifies, that it is the desire of those who are in the doctrine of faith separated, that in matters of faith the understanding should be shut up, and the will closed, and thus that they should not have any spiritual light and life; but that it is nevertheless provided by the Lord that the understanding should not be shut up, nor the will closed, lest spiritual light and life in man should be extinguished. In those days, signifies the last state of the church, when the doctrine of faith alone is universally received; men shall seek death, signifies that they will desire that, in matters of faith, the understanding should be shut up; and shall not find it, signifies that it is provided of the Lord, that this should not be done; and shall desire to die, signifies that they will also wish to have the will closed in them; and death shall flee from them, signifies that it is provided that neither should take place; for thus spiritual light and life would be extinguished, and man would spiritually die; to seek, is predicated of the understanding; and to desire, of the will; and death, of both. That this is the signification of these words, is evident; otherwise, what meaning could there be in men's seeking death in those days and not finding it, and desiring to die and death fleeing from them? for by death, no other death is meant but spiritual death, which is induced when the understanding is removed from the things that are to be believed; for, in this case, man knows not whether he thinks and does what is true, or what is false, thus whether he thinks and acts with the angels of heaven, or with the devils of hell.