Spiritual Meaning of EXODUS 19:14-15
AC 8804. Verses 14, 15. And Moses went down from the mountain unto the people, and sanctified the people, and they washed their garments. And he said unto the people, Be ready for three days, come not near unto a woman. "And Moses went down from the mountain unto the people," signifies application and preparation through truth from the Divine for receiving truths in good; "and sanctified the people," signifies the veiling over of the interiors that they may appear to be in the holiness of faith; "and they washed their garments," signifies the purification of the truths of faith; "and he said unto the people, Be ready for three days," signifies full preparation; "come not near unto a woman," signifies the purification of the good of faith.
AC 8805. And Moses went down from the mountain unto the people. That this signifies application and preparation through truth from the Divine for receiving truths in good, is evident from the signification of "going down," when said of Moses, by whom is represented truth from the Divine, as being application, and also preparation, through it; from the representation of Moses, as being truth from the Divine (n. 8760, 8787), and also as being what mediates (n. 8787), thus likewise what prepares and applies; from the signification of "the mountain," as being the Divine in heaven, thus heaven; and from the representation of the sons of Israel, as being those who are of the spiritual church, thus those who are in truth through which is good, and in good from which is truth, here in the good in which truths are to be received. It is important to know what is specifically signified by "Mount Sinai;" and also what is represented by the people Israel, and likewise what by Moses in this chapter and in the following chapters of the book of Exodus.
 By "MOUNT SINAI" is specifically signified heaven, out of which truths flow in from the Lord; therefore by "the coming down of Jehovah upon that mountain" is signified His presence in heaven. And as heaven, in which Jehovah is, that is, the Lord, is signified by "Mount Sinai," by it is also signified Divine good united to Divine truth there, for from this heaven is heaven.
 But by the "PEOPLE ISRAEL" near this mountain is represented the spiritual church as to the good in which the truths of faith are to be implanted; for it has been already shown that they who are of the spiritual church have two states; the former when they are led through truths to good, the latter when they are in good and from good in truths; in the present case, when they are in the good in which truths are to be implanted, which state is a middle state between the former and the latter. The truths which are implanted in good are contained in those things which were promulgated from Mount Sinai by the Lord, and were communicated by Moses to the people.
 By "MOSES" in this chapter and in the following chapters is represented truth from the Divine beneath heaven conjoined with truth Divine in heaven, and consequently mediating between the Divine in heaven and the good in which truths are to be implanted which belongs to the spiritual church, thus mediating between the Lord and the people. It is important to know these things for the sake of understanding what follows in the book of Exodus. From all this it can also be seen that by "Moses went down from the mountain unto the people" is signified application and preparation by means of truth from the Divine for receiving truths in good.
AC 8806. And sanctified the people. That this signifies the veiling over of the interiors that they may appear to be in the holiness of faith, is evident from what was unfolded above (n. 8788); but it was there set forth what was the sanctification with the lsraelitish people, namely, that it was a veiling over of the interiors, so that as to their externals they might appear to be in what was holy when they were in representative worship; and that unless their interiors had then been veiled over, they would not only have defiled the holiness of worship by foul thoughts and evil affections, but would also have totally destroyed it, so that nothing celestial and spiritual which was represented in the external things would have been perceived therefrom in heaven.
 But as by "the sons of Israel" are here meant those who are of the spiritual church, it shall be briefly told what is meant by " sanctification" with these. They who are of the spiritual church and live a life of truth and from this a life of good, are withheld from evils and are kept in good by the Lord. The good which is from the Lord is holy with them. Consequently in so far as they receive good from the Lord, so far they are holy; and they receive so much of good from the Lord, that is, are so far holy, as they live a life of good according to the genuine truths of faith, and at the same time believe that all the good which they then think and do is from the Lord. Then, too, evils with them are separated so as not to appear at all, especially those which they have derived hereditarily from parents, and which are filthy, because they have been successively accumulated with the parents for many ages back, and thus amassed in the offspring. These are the interiors which with those who are of the spiritual church are hid away and as it were veiled over (n. 966, 1667, 2307, 2308, 3701, 4317, 8550). Hence it is that all the will they possess hereditarily is destroyed. For this cause a new will is formed with them in the intellectual part by means of truths of faith from the Lord. This is the reason why, when they are being regenerated, they are led by means of truths to good; and afterward when they have been regenerated, from good into the truths of good. Hence it is evident how a new will is created in them by the Lord. This is formed in the intellectual part with those who are of the spiritual church, (n. 863, 875, 895, 927, 1023, 1043, 1044, 1555, 2256, 4328, 4493, 5113, 6125).
AC 8807. And they washed their garments. That this signifies the purification of the truths of faith, is evident from what was said above (n. 8789), where like words occur.
AC 8808. And he said unto the people, Be ready for three days. That this signifies full preparation, is evident from what was said above (n. 8790), where are like words.
AC 8809. Come not near unto a woman. That this signifies the purification of the good of faith, is evident from the fact that the marriages with the Israelitish nation were impure, because their interiors were filthy; for conjugial love descends from the marriage of good and truth; and therefore those who as to the interiors are not in good and truth cannot be in pure marriage; and they who as to the interiors are in evil and falsity, as was that nation, are in impure marriage. Hence it is that "not to come near unto a woman" denotes to abstain from what is impure. Conjugial love descends from the heavenly marriage, which is that of good and truth, (n. 2727-2759, 2803, 3132, 4434, 4835); and with the people descended from Jacob there was not anything conjugial, and therefore it was permitted them to have more than one wife, (n. 3246). But as regards those who are of the spiritual church and are here represented by the sons of Israel, neither are they in anything conjugial until with them truth has been implanted in good. Before this is the case, there is indeed marriage, but not pure marriage, for in the interiors there is not before this a marriage of good and truth. Hence it is that by "not to come near unto a woman" is signified in the internal sense to be purified as to the good of faith; for in this chapter the good in which truth has not yet been implanted is treated of, and in the following chapters the implanting. EXODUS 19:14-15 previous - next - text - summary - Exodus - Full Page
|Author: E. Swedenborg (1688-1772).||Design: I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002.||www.BibleMeanings.info|