Spiritual Meaning of GENESIS 14:14
AC 1706. Verse 14. And Abram heard that his brother was taken captive; and he hastened his trained men that were born in his house, three hundred and eighteen, and pursued unto Dan. "Abram heard that his brother was taken captive," signifies that the interior man perceived in what state was the external man; "and he hastened his trained men that were born in his house," signifies those goods in the external man that were now delivered from the yoke of servitude; "three hundred and eighteen," signifies their quality; "and pursued unto Dan," signifies the commencement of purification.
AC 1707. Abram heard that his brother was taken captive. That this signifies that the interior man perceived in what state the external was, is evident from the signification of "Abram" in the verse that immediately precedes this, as being the interior man to which the internal or Divine man was adjoined; and from the signification of "Lot," as being the external man, as has been shown before; also from the signification of "hearing that his brother was captive," as being to perceive in what state the external man was, namely, as was said in (verse 12), that apparent goods and truths had possession of it.
 The case is this: When the interior man (meant by "Abram the Hebrew") perceived that the goods and truths from which the combat was waged were not goods and truths except apparently, and that they had possession of the whole of the external man (signified by "Lot, his brother‘s son"), then the interior man, or the Divine internal man through the interior, purified them. How this is done, no one can possibly know but he to whom it has been revealed; for the influx of the internal man, through the interior or middle man, into the external man, is an arcanum, especially at the present time, when few, if any, know what the interior man is, and still less what the internal man is. What the internal man is, and what the interior man, may be seen just above, at (verse 13). But here it shall be briefly stated what is the nature of the influx.
 The internal man in every one belongs to the Lord alone; for there the Lord stores up the goods and truths with which He gifts man from infancy. Thence through these He flows into the interior or rational man, and through this into the exterior; in this way it is given to the man to think, and to be a man. But the influx from the internal man into the interior or middle man, and so into the exterior man, is twofold; it is either by celestial things, or by spiritual things or what is the same, it is either by goods, or by truths. By celestial things, or goods, it flows in only with regenerate men, who have been gifted either with perception or with conscience; thus it flows in by perception or by conscience; for which reason the influx by celestial things has no existence except with those who are in love to the Lord and in charity toward the neighbor. But by spiritual things, or truths, the Lord flows in with every man; and unless there were this influx the man could not think, and therefore could not speak. then a man is such that he perverts the goods and truths, and when he cares nothing for celestial and spiritual things, there is then no influx of celestial things, or goods, but the way for these is closed; and yet there is an influx of spiritual things, or truths, for a way for them is continually kept open. Hence may be seen what is the nature of the interior or middle, that is, of the rational man.
 The internal man in the interior or middle man is here signified by "Abram." then the celestial things, or goods, flow in from the internal man into the interior man, the internal man then appropriates to itself the interior or middle man, and makes it its own but the interior or middle man is still distinct from the internal man. The case is similar when the internal man flows in through the interior or middle man into the exterior man, for then it likewise appropriates the exterior man to itself, and makes it its own; but yet the exterior man is distinct from the interior man. So now, when the internal man perceived in the interior or middle man that the state of the external man was such, namely, that the external man was made captive, that is, that not genuine but apparent goods and truths had taken possession of it, from which it had fought against so many enemies, it then flowed in, and reduced all things to order, and liberated it from the things which infested it, and thus purified it, that is to say, so that its goods and truths were not apparent but genuine goods and truths, and were thus conjoined with the internal or Divine man; and this, as before said, by means of the interior or middle man.
 In this the Lord was not like any man for His interior man as to celestial things or goods was Divine, and was adjoined to His internal man even from birth. His internal man, together with this interior man, was Jehovah Himself, His Father. But He was similar to other men in this, that His interior man as to spiritual things or truths had been adjoined to His external man, and thus was Human; but this also was made Divine, that is, Jehovah, by means of combats of temptations and continual victories from its own power. The external man is what is called "Lot;" in the former state however this is called "Abram’s brothers son," but in this "Abram‘s brother;" for it was called his brother’s son when possessed by apparent goods and truths, but his brother when possessed by genuine goods and truths.
AC 1708. And he hastened his trained men that were born in his house. That this signifies these goods and truths in the external man which were now delivered from the yoke of servitude, is evident from the signification of the "trained men," as also of those "born in Abram‘s house." Abram’s "men in training," or novitiates, in the internal sense, are those goods in the external man which can be conjoined with the interior man; those "born in the house," in the internal sense, are the same goods and also truths, as being proper to that man. But these things contain more arcana that can be told; in the first place these- how, after the combats of temptations, apparent goods become genuine goods, and that they can then be conjoined with the interior or middle man, and through this with the internal man, and be made in like manner Divine. For the Lord adjoined His Human Essence to His Divine Essence by degrees, and this by means of combats of temptations and victories, as before said. These goods that were made genuine are what are called Abram‘s "men in training," or novitiates for these goods were in training, and were novitiates; and as they were procured by His own power, they are called "born in his house."
AC 1709. Three hundred and eighteen men. That this signifies their quality, namely, that they are the holy things of combat, is involved in the number "eighteen," and also in the number "three hundred;" for these numbers are composed of three and six. "Three" signifies what is holy (n. 720, 901); and "six" combat (n. 737, 900). That Abram hastened so many, is an historical truth but still it was representative, as is all the history in the Word in the five books of Moses, in Joshua, in Judges, in Samuel, in the Kings, in Daniel, and in Jonah, where the numbers in like manner involve arcana; for nothing has been written in the Word which was not of this nature, otherwise it would not be the Word, and otherwise it would not have been related that Abram hastened three hundred and eighteen; and also that these were in training, and born in his house; besides many other things which are said in this chapter.
AC 1710. And pursued even to Dan. That this signifies a state of purification, is evident from the connection of the things in the internal sense. To "pursue the enemies" is here to expel the evils and falsities which were with the goods and truths, and that caused them to merely appear to be goods and truths, and thus to liberate and purify them. "Even to Dan," signifies to the farthest limit of Canaan, thus to the uttermost boundaries whither they had fled. That Dan" signifies the farthest limits, or the extreme boundaries of Canaan, is evident in many places in the Word. As in Samuel:--
To transfer the kingdom from the house of Saul, and to set up the throne of David over Israel and over Judah, from Dan even to Beer-sheba (2 Sam. 3:10).
In gathering, all Israel shall be gathered together, from Dan even to Beer-sheba (2 Sam. 17:11).
David said to Joab, Go now to and fro through all the tribes of Israel, from Dan even to Beer-sheba (2 Sam. 24:2, 15).
In the book of Kings:--
Judah and Israel dwelt in safety, every man under his vine and under this fig-tree, from Dan even to Beer-sheba (1 Kings 4:25).
From these passages it is evident that Dan was the farthest boundary of Canaan, whither the enemies were pursued which infested the goods and truths of the external man. But as Dan was a boundary of Canaan, and therefore within Canaan, lest they should stay there, they were driven further, namely, "to Hobah on the left of Damascus," as is evident from the things stated in the verse next following, and in this way purification was effected. By the land of Canaan, in a holy sense, as before said, is signified the Lord’s kingdom, thus the celestial of love, or good; primarily, the good with the Lord.GENESIS 14:14 previous - next - text - summary - Genesis - Full Page
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