Spiritual Meaning of GENESIS 16:5
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AC 1912. Verse 5. And Sarai said unto Abram, My wrong be upon thee; I gave any handmaid into thy bosom, and she saw that she conceived, and I am despised in her eyes; Jehovah judge between me and thee. "Sarai said unto Abram," signifies that the affection of truth so perceived; "My wrong be upon thee; I gave my handmaid into thy bosom," signifies unwillingness to take blame to itself; "and she saw that she conceived," signifies the first life of the rational; "and I am despised in her eyes," signifies here as before that this rational at its conception lightly esteemed truth adjoined to good; "Jehovah judge between me and thee," signifies the Lord‘s indignation.

AC 1913. Sarai said unto Abram. That this signifies that the affection of truth so perceived, is evident from the signification of "Sarai," as being the affection of truth (n. 1904); and of saying, as being in the internal sense perceiving-- as before said (n. 1898) where the same words occur.

AC 1914. My wrong be upon thee; I gave my handmaid into thy bosom. That this signifies unwillingness to take blame upon itself, is evident without explication. In the internal sense there is involved in these words that the Lord perceived this first rational to be such as to lightly esteem intellectual truth, on which account He rebuked it. For the Lord thought from intellectual truth, as before said (n. 1904); and because this truth is above the rational, it could perceive and see the quality of this rational, namely, that it held that truth in low esteem.

[2] That the Lord could perceive and see from the interior man what was the quality of the new rational in Himself, may be seen from the fact that the interior can perceive what takes place in the exterior, or what is the same, that the higher can see what is in the lower; but not the reverse. Moreover they who have conscience can do this and are accustomed to do it, for when anything contrary to the truth of conscience flows into the thought, or into the endeavor of the will, they not only perceive it, but also find fault with it; and it even grieves them to be of such a character. Still more can those do this who have perception, as perception is more interior in the rational. What then could not the Lord do, who had Divine celestial perception, and thought from the affection of intellectual truth, which is above the rational! Therefore He could not but be indignant, knowing that nothing of evil and falsity was from Himself, and that from the affection of truth He took the greatest pains that His rational should be pure. This shows that the Lord did not lightly esteem intellectual truth, but that He perceived the first rational in Himself to be thinking lightly of it.

[3] What it is to think from intellectual truth cannot be explained to the apprehension, and the less so because no one but the Lord ever thought from this affection and from this truth. He who thinks therefrom is above the angelic heaven, for even the angels of the third heaven do not think from intellectual truth, but from the interior of the rational. But so far as the Lord united His Human Essence to His Divine Essence, He thought from the Divine good itself, that is, from Jehovah.

[4] The fathers of the Most Ancient Church who had perception, thought from the interior rational. The fathers of the Ancient Church, who had not perception but conscience, thought from the exterior or natural rational. But all who are without conscience do not think at all from the rational, since they have not the rational, although they appear to have it; but they think from the sensuous and corporeal natural. The reason why they who have no conscience cannot think from the rational, is that they have no rational, as just said. The rational man is he who thinks the good and truth of faith, and by no means he who thinks contrary thereto. They who think evil and falsity are insane in their thought, and therefore the rational can by no means be predicated of them.

AC 1915. And she saw that she conceived. That this signifies the first life of the rational, is evident from the signification of " conception,’ as being the first life (n. 1910).

AC 1916. I am devised in her eyes. That this signifies that this rational at its conception lightly esteemed the truth itself that was adjoined to good, is evident from what was said just above (n. 1911, 1914).

AC 1917. Jehovah judge between me and thee. That this signifies the Lords indignation, is evident from what has just been said, and thus without explication. No further idea of these things can be had, except by those who have been in the combats of temptations. In temptations there are vastations and desolations, and there are states of despair, and of consequent grief and indignation, besides other interior painful emotions and this with variety and alternation, according to the states of evil and falsity which are excited by evil genii and spirits, and against which the combat is being waged. The diabolical spirits desire nothing more than to find some falsity, in fact it is common with them to induce a falsity from themselves, and then at the same time to make it the subject of accusation. Hence the Lord‘s indignation was so great, in whose first rational there was no falsity, but an appearance of truth that in itself was not true (n. 1661, 1911).

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Author:  E. Swedenborg (1688-1772). Design:  I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002. www.BibleMeanings.info