Spiritual Meaning of EXODUS 18:12
AC 8679. Verse 12. And Jethro Moses’ father-in-law took a burnt-offering and sacrifices for God; and Aaron came, and all the elders of Israel, to eat bread with Moses‘ father-in-law before God. "And Jethro Moses’ father-in-law took a burnt-offering and sacrifices for God," signifies worship from the good of love and truths of faith; "and Aaron came, and all the elders of Israel," signifies the things of the church which are primary; "to eat bread with Moses‘ father-in-law before God," signifies the appropriation of these things by virtue of the Divine good.
AC 8680. And Jethro Moses’ father-in-law took a burnt-offering and sacrifices for God. That this signifies worship from the good of love and truths of faith, is evident from the signification of "a burnt-offering" and of "sacrifices," as being representatives of the celestial and spiritual things which are of internal worship; burnt-offerings being representative of celestial things, that is, of the good of love; and sacrifices being representative of spiritual things, that is, of the truth of faith (n. 922, 923, 1823, 2180, 2805, 2807, 2830, 3519, 6905). That burnt-offerings represented those things which are of the good of love, and sacrifices those things which are of the truth of faith, is evident from their institution; namely, that in the burnt-offerings all was consumed, both the flesh and the blood; but in the sacrifices the flesh was eaten, as can be seen from what is said in Leviticus i. to v.; Numbers 28, and in Deuteronomy, where are these words:--
That thou mayest make thy burnt-offerings, the flesh and the blood, upon the altar of Jehovah thy God; the blood of the sacrifices shall be poured out upon the altar of Jehovah thy God, and thou shalt eat the flesh (Deut. 12:27);
the reason why these two things were represented by the burnt-offerings and the sacrifices, was that the burnt-offerings and the sacrifices represented all the worship of God in general (n. 923, 6905) and the worship of God in general is founded upon love and faith, for without these there is no worship, but only a rite, such as is of the external man without the internal, thus devoid of life.
AC 8681. And Aaron came, and all the elders of Israel. That this signifies the things of the church which are primary, is evident from the representation of Aaron, as being the truth of doctrine (n. 6998, 7009, 7089, 7382); and from the representation of the elders of Israel, as being the chief truths of the church that are in agreement with good (n. 6524, 8578, 8585); for by "Israel" is signified the church (n. 8645).
AC 8682. To eat bread with Moses‘ father-in-law before God. That this signifies the appropriation of these things by virtue of the Divine good, is evident from the signification of "eating," as being appropriation (n. 3168, 3513, 3596, 3832, 4745); and from the signification of "bread," as being the good of love (n. 2165, 2177, 3464, 3735, 4211, 4217, 4735, 5915); that it denotes from the Divine good, is signified by their "eating the bread before God." By "bread" is here meant all the food that was used at that time, especially the flesh of the sacrifices; for when sacrifices were offered, the flesh of them was eaten beside the altar. By "bread" is signified all worship in general, (n. 2165).
 The reason why the flesh of the sacrifices was eaten, was that there might be represented the appropriation of celestial good, and also consociation by love, for the flesh of the sacrifice which they then ate, signified the good of love; wherefore this was to them a holy feast. "Flesh" denotes the good of love, (n. 7850). From all this it can be seen what was meant by the Lord when He said that they should "eat His flesh" (John 6:53-56); and also when He instituted the Holy Supper, that the bread was "His body" (Matt. 26:26). No one can ever know the meaning of these things unless he knows that there is an internal sense, and that in this sense are understood celestial and spiritual things in place of the natural things; and that the natural things correspond to them, and have a signification according to the correspondences. Otherwise no one could ever know why the Holy Supper was instituted, and what holiness there is in the bread; and why the bread is the body and the flesh, besides countless other things.EXODUS 18:12 previous - next - text - summary - Exodus - Full Page
|Author: E. Swedenborg (1688-1772).||Design: I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002.||www.BibleMeanings.info|