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Citations in "Hic Liber" Inscription

Below are the full hypertext-linked texts of the paragraphs cited in Swedenborg's hand-written incription on a copy of his book Brief Exposition—citing 2513, 4535, 6895, 8427 and AR 626. Translations are based on Elliott's translation of Arcana Coelestia as modified by me (to put the parts of the text into first person plural and to render the style more consistent with the that of the Swedenborg Foundation's New Century Edition). In-line hypertext links to Swedenborg's works are also to Elliott's translation, at NewSearch 98 Net; once there you can also view Potts's translation by clicking on "Alternate Translation" or even view the original Neo-Latin. Biblical hypertext links are to the Bible Gateway.

Arcana Coelestia (AC) paragraph no. 2513: That 'God came to Abimelech' means the Lord's perception regarding the doctrine of faith is clear from the meaning of 'God's coming' and from the meaning of 'Abimelech'; for 'God's coming' plainly means perceiving, since perception is nothing else than a Divine coming or influx into our ability to understand, and 'Abimelech' means the doctrine of faith, as shown above in 2504, 2509, 2510.

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AC 4535: The preliminary sections of previous chapters—Chapter 26 onwards—explained what the Lord foretold about his Coming or The Close of the Age. We have frequently seen in those sections that his Coming or the Close of the Age means the last period of the Church, which in the Word is called the Last Judgment. If we do not look beyond the literal sense, we cannot know of the Last Judgment as anything else than the destruction of the world, the particular source for such an idea being the Book of Revelation. There it says that [John] saw 'a new heaven and a new earth, for the former heaven and the former earth had passed away; and there was no more sea', and in addition that he saw 'the Holy City, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven', Rev. 21:1, 2. Prophetical utterances in Isaiah, where similar predictions occur, are also a source of the same idea,

Behold, I am creating new heavens and a new earth; therefore the former things will not be remembered or come to mind.1 Be glad and rejoice for ever in the things I am creating; behold, I will create Jerusalem a rejoicing, and her people a joy. Isa. 65:17, 18; 66:22.

If we do not look beyond the literal sense, we cannot conceive of anything else than this—that the whole sky together with this planet will be annihilated, and then the dead—for the first time—will rise again and dwell in the new heaven and on the new earth. But we should not understand these places in the Word in that way, as we may recognize from other places in the Word that refer to the heavens and the earth. If we have any belief in an internal sense, we can see plainly that 'a new heaven' and 'a new earth' are used to mean a new Church which takes over when the previous one passes away, 1733, 1850, 3355 (end), and that 'heaven' is the internal aspect of that new Church and 'earth' the external aspect of it.

This last period of the previous Church and the first of the new one are also called the Close of the Age, about which the Lord has spoken in Matthew 24. They are called also his Coming, for at that time the Lord departs from the previous Church and comes to the new. The description of that period as the Close of the Age may also be seen from other places in the Word, as in Isaiah,

On that day a remnant will return, the remnant of Jacob, to the God of power. For though your people Israel will be as the sand of the sea, a remnant of it will return. The close has been determined, overflowing with righteousness, for the Lord Jehovih Zebaoth is bringing the whole earth to its close and to its determined end. Isa. 10:20-23.

In the same prophet,

Now do not be derisive, lest your punishments increase, for a close and a cutting off I have heard from the Lord Jehovih Zebaoth over the whole earth. Isa. 28:22.

In Jeremiah,

Thus said Jehovah, The whole earth will be a waste, yet I will not bring it to a close. Jer. 4:27.

In Zephaniah,

I will bring people into distress, and they will go as the blind, because they have sinned against Jehovah; and their blood will be poured out like dust, and their flesh like dung. For Jehovah will bring to a close, indeed to a hasty one, all the inhabitants of the earth. Zeph. 1:17, 18.

From each detail stated here it is evident that 'a close' means the last period of the Church and 'the earth' the Church itself.

The reason why 'the earth (or land)' means the Church is that the land of Canaan was the land where the Church had existed since most ancient times, and later on where among the descendants of Jacob a representative of the Church existed. When this land is said to have been 'brought to a close' it is not the nation dwelling there that is meant but the holiness of worship which existed with the nation where the Church was. For the Word is spiritual; but the actual land is not spiritual, nor is the nation dwelling in it, only that which constitutes the Church there. For evidence that the land of Canaan was the land where the Church had existed from most ancient times, see 567, 3686, 4447, 4454, 4516, 4517; and this explains why 'the land' or 'the earth' in the Word means the Church, 566, 662, 1066, 1067, 1262, 3355, 4447. From all this one we may see what is meant in Isaiah by 'bringing the whole earth to a close', and in Zephaniah by 'bringing all the inhabitants of the earth to a hasty one'. It is well known that the Jewish nation which inhabited that land was not 'brought to a close' but that the holiness of worship among them was.

This meaning of 'the close' is even clearer in Daniel,

Seventy weeks have been decreed concerning your people and your holy city to bring transgression to a close and to seal up sins and to atone for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up vision and prophet, and to anoint the Most Holy Place. In the middle of the week he will cause sacrifice and offering to cease. At length upon the bird of desolations will come desolation; until a close and a cutting off will it drop upon the devastation. Dan. 9:24, 27.

From this we may now see that the close of the age—about which the disciples were asking when they said to the Lord 'What will be the sign of Your coming and of the close of the age?' Matt. 24:3—does not mean anything else than the final period of the Church. The same is also meant by the Lord's words, which are the very last in the same gospel,

Jesus said to the disciples, Teaching them to observe2 all things whatever I have commanded you; and behold, I am with you at all times3 even to the close of the age. Matt. 28:20.

The reason why the Lord said that he would be with the disciples even to the close of the age is that the Lord's twelve disciples are similar in meaning to the twelve tribes of Israel. That is to say, they mean all things of love and faith, and therefore all things of the Church, see 3354, 3488, 3858, as do the twelve tribes, 3858, 3926, 3939, 4060. The fact that the Church reaches its close when no charity exists there any longer, nor consequently any faith, has been shown several times already; and that within the Church at the present day, called the Christian Church, scarcely any trace of charity or consequently of faith survives there; and that the close of the age is accordingly now at hand, will in the Lord's Divine mercy be shown further on.

1lit. come up upon the heart
2Reading servare (to observe) for the imperative servate (observe)
3lit. I am with you all the days

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AC 6895: 'Saying, I have certainly visited you' means his coming to those who belong to the spiritual Church. This is clear from the meaning of 'visiting' as the Lord's coming, which precedes the final period of the Church, the period which is spoken of in the Word as a final judgment. Regarding the meaning of 'visitation' as that judgment, see 2242, 6588; and the fact that that judgment is called the Lord's coming is evident from the following words in Matthew,

The disciples said to Jesus, Tell us, when will those things take place, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the close of the age? Matt. 24:3.

The Lord was telling the disciples then about the final period of the Church, as may be seen from the explanations given in 3353-3356, 3486, 3489, 3897-3901, 4055-4060, 4229-4231, 4422-4424. He said that when all those things happen,

The sign of the Son of Man will appear, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn; and they will see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and glory. Matt. 24:30.

'The Lord's coming' is not used to mean his appearance together with angels in the clouds, but the acceptance of him in people's hearts through love and faith, see 3353, 3900, and also his appearance from within the Word, the inmost or highest sense of which deals with the Lord alone, 4060 This coming is meant by 'the Lord's coming', which takes place at the time when an old Church is done away with and a new one is established by the Lord. And because a new phase of the Church was to be established now among the descendants of Jacob, the words 'I have certainly visited you' are used, like those spoken by Joseph when he was about to die,

Joseph said to his brothers, I am dying; and God will certainly visit you and cause you to go up out of this land to the land which he swore to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Gen. 50:24.

'Certainly visiting you' here means in the sense of the letter deliverance from slavery in Egypt and introduction into the land of Canaan. This however is not the spiritual subject matter contained in the Word but the natural. The spiritual subject matter in the Word has to do with the Lord, his kingdom and the Church, and love and faith. Consequently 'certainly visiting' is used to mean in the spiritual sense deliverance from falsities and thus introduction into things that belong to the Church and the Lord's kingdom, that is, the Lord's coming in love and faith among those who will belong to the new Church.

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AC 8427: 'And in the morning you will see the glory of Jehovah' means that at the beginning of a new state the arrival of the Lord is going to take place. This is clear from the meaning of 'the morning' as the beginning of a new state, dealt with immediately above in 8426; and from the meaning of 'the glory of Jehovah' as the presence and the arrival of the Lord. The reason why 'the glory' means the presence and the arrival of the Lord is that in the highest sense 'glory' is the Divine Truth which emanates from the Lord; and Divine Truth appears before angels' eyes as the light and splendour from the Sun, which is the Lord. For the meaning of 'the glory' as Divine Truth emanating from the Lord, see 5922, 8267; for its meaning intelligence and wisdom that belong to Divine Truth, 4809; and its consequently meaning the internal sense of the Word, since that sense is Divine Truth in glory, 5922.

It says that in the morning they are going to see the glory of Jehovah because sunrise and its accompanying light (which in heaven brings light to angels' eyes, to both their outward and their inward sight) consequently the presence and arrival of the Lord (who is the Sun of heaven) corresponds to morning time on earth and is meant here by 'the morning'. The light from the sun then, which is Divine Truth emanating from the Lord, and for that reason is the Lord, is 'the glory'. From this it is evident that 'the glory' means the presence and arrival of the Lord. The fact that these are meant by 'the glory' is also evident from a number of places in the Word, such as in Moses,

The cloud covered the mountain, and the glory of Jehovah dwelt over Mount Sinai. And the cloud covered it six days. The sight of the glory of Jehovah was like a devouring fire on the top of the mountain, before the eyes of the children of Israel. Exod. 24:15-18.

Plainly, the presence of Jehovah, that is, of the Lord, appearing as a cloud and as fire on the mountain, is here called 'the glory of Jehovah'.

In the same author,

The cloud covered the tent of meeting, and the glory of Jehovah filled the tabernacle. Nor could Moses enter the tent of meeting, because the cloud dwelt over it, and the glory of Jehovah filled the tabernacle. Exod. 40:34, 35.

Here also the Lord's presence, appearing as a cloud, is called 'the glory'.

In the same author,

Moses and Aaron entered the tent of meeting; and they came out and blessed the people. At that time the glory of Jehovah appeared to the whole people. Lev. 9:23, 24.

In the same author,

The glory of Jehovah appeared in the tent of meeting before all the children of Israel. Num. 14:10-12.

Likewise in Num. 16:19, 42.

In the first Book of Kings,

The cloud filled the house of Jehovah, so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud; for the glory of Jehovah filled the house of Jehovah. 1 Kings 8:10, 11.

In John,

The temple was filled with smoke from the glory of God and from his power, so that no one was able to enter the temple. Rev. 15:8.

In the same book,

He showed me the great city, the holy Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, having the glory of God. The city has no need of the sun or of the moon to shed light in it; the glory of God gives it light, and its lamp is the Lamb. Rev. 21:10, 11, 23.

Here 'the glory of God' plainly stands for light from the Lord, which is Divine Truth emanating from him, and so is the presence of the Lord since the Lord is present in Truth coming from him.

The fact that 'the glory of Jehovah' means his presence is clear yet again in Moses,

Moses said to Jehovah, Show me, I beg You, Your glory. He said to him, I will cause all my goodness to pass by before you. And when my glory passes by, it will happen, that I will put you in a cleft of the rock and cover my hand over you until I have passed by. But when I take my hand away you will see my back parts, and my face will not be seen. Exod. 33:18-end.

Here also 'Jehovah's glory' plainly stands for his presence.

In Matthew,

The disciples said to Jesus, Tell us, what will be the sign of Your coming? Jesus said, Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear, and they will see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and glory. Matt. 24:3, 30.

The subject here is the final period of the former Church and the first of the new. 'The Son of Man' is God's truth emanating from the Lord; 'the clouds of heaven' are the Word in the sense of the letter, and 'power and glory' are the internal sense, thus Divine Truth which will be visible then. 'The Lord's coming' stands for the acceptance of God's truth by those belonging to the new Church and the rejection of it by those belonging to the old Church, see 4060 (end).

The fact that the Lord in respect of Divine Truth is meant by 'the glory' is clear in Isaiah,

The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare the way of Jehovah. The glory of Jehovah will be revealed, and all flesh will see it together. Isa. 40:3, 5.

This refers to the Lord, who is 'the glory'. In John,

The Word became flesh and dwelt among us; and we saw his glory, glory as of the Only Begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth. John 1:14

In the same gospel,

These things Isaiah said when he saw his glory and spoke of him. John 12:41.

Here 'glory' stands for the Lord. Similarly in Moses,

I am the Living One, and the whole earth will be filled with the glory of Jehovah. Num. 14:21.

Here 'the glory of Jehovah' stands for the Coming or arrival of the Lord, and for enlightenment by Divine Truth emanating from him.

'Glory' stands for the Lord's Divinity in Isaiah,

I am Jehovah, that is my name; and my glory I will not give to another. Isa. 42:8.

In Mark,

...when the Son of Man comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels. Mark 8:38.

In Luke,

Ought [not] Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into his glory? Luke 24:26.

Since 'the glory of Jehovah' means the Lord in respect of Divine Truth, 'the glory' also means the Divine Wisdom and Intelligence that belong to Divine Truth emanating from the Lord. Wisdom and intelligence from God are meant by the glory in Ezekiel 1:28; 8:4; 9:3; 10:4, 18, 19; 11:22, 23; and there it is represented by 'a rainbow' such as one sees in a cloud.

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Apocalypse Revealed (AR) 626: [Rev. 14:] Verse 6. And I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the eternal gospel to proclaim unto them that dwell on the earth, signifies the annunciation of the Lord's advent, and of the New Church about to come down out of heaven from him. By "an angel," in the highest sense, is meant the Lord, and thence also heaven (n. 5, 344, 465). By "another angel" is signified something new from the Lord; by "flying in the midst of heaven" is signified to look down on, to observe, and to provide for (n. 415), here something new out of heaven from the Lord in the church. By the "eternal gospel" is signified the annunciation of the coming of the Lord and of his kingdom (n. 478, 553). By "them that dwell on the earth," are signified the men of the church to whom the annunciation will be made. The reason why it also means to announce that the New Church is now about to descend out of heaven from him, is, because the Lord's coming involves two things, the Last Judgment, and after it the New Church. The Last Judgment is treated of in chapters 19, 20, and the New Church, which is the New Jerusalem, in chapters 21-22. That by "the gospel" and "proclaiming" is signified the annunciation of the coming of the Lord and of his kingdom, appears evidently from the passages cited in n. 478, which may there be seen.

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