Spiritual Meaning of GENESIS 17:7
AC 2017. Verse 7. And I will set up My covenant between Me and thee and thy seed after thee unto their generation, for an eternal covenant, to be to thee for God, and to thy seed after thee. "I will set up My covenant between Me and thee," signifies union; "and thy seed after thee," signifies conjunction with those who have faith in Him; "unto their generations," signifies those things which are of faith; "for an eternal covenant," signifies conjunction with these; "to be to thee for God," signifies the Lord‘s Divine in Himself; "and to thy seed after thee," signifies the Divine thence derived with those who have faith in Him.
AC 2018. I will set up My covenant between Me and thee. That this signifies union, is evident from the signification of a "covenant," as being union (n. 665, 666, 1023, 1038); which union has been treated of in this chapter, and many times before; and it has been shown that Jehovah, who here speaks, was in the Lord, because He was one with Him from first conception and from birth; for the Lord was conceived from Jehovah, and hence His internal was Jehovah. This has been further illustrated by what is similar in man (n. 1999), namely, that his soul is one with his body, or his internal with his external, although they are distinct from each other, and sometimes so distinct that the one fights with the other, as is wont to be the case in temptations, in which the internal reproves the external and desires to reject the evil that is in it; and still they are conjoined, or are a one, because both soul and body belong to the same man. Take for example one whose thought differs from what he shows in his looks, speaks with his mouth, and acts by his gesture. There is in him an interior which is at variance with the external, but still they are one; for the thought is the man’s as much as are the external looks, mouth, and gestures; but there is a union when the look, the speech of the lips, and the gestures accord with the thought. So much for illustration.
AC 2019. And thy seed after thee. That this signifies conjunction with those who have faith in Him, is evident from the signification of "seed," as being faith (n. 1025, 1447, 1610); and also from the signification of "after thee," as being to follow. To "walk after" some one is an expression that is often made use of in the Word (Jer. 7:6; 8:2; Ezek. 20:16; Mark 8:34; Luke 9:23; 14:27). In this passage therefore "thy seed after thee," signifies those who are in faith and follow Him; in the internal sense, who are born of Him.
AC 2020. Unto their generations. That this signifies the things that are of faith, is evident from the signification of "generations," as being the things which are generated and born of charity, that is, all the things of faith, or what is the same, all who are regenerated by the Lord, and thus in whom there is the faith of charity; concerning which, of the Lord‘s Divine mercy hereafter. That in the internal sense "generations," and also "births," are such things (n. 613, 1041, 1145, 1330).
AC 2021. For an eternal covenant. That this signifies conjunction with these, is evident from the signification of a "covenant," as being conjunction (n. 665, 666, 1023, 1038) and that it is with those who are called his "seed" is evident from its immediately following, and because a "covenant" is spoken of a second time in this verse. The "covenant" first spoken of refers to the union of Jehovah with the Human Essence, and the second mention of a "covenant" refers to the conjunction with those who are the seed. In order that a more distinct idea may be formed concerning the union of the Lord’s Divine Essence with His Human Essence, and concerning the Lord‘s conjunction with the human race through the faith of charity, it may be well here and in what follows to call the former Union, but the latter Conjunction. Between the Lord’s Divine Essence and His Human Essence there was a Union; but between the Lord and the human race there is a Conjunction, through the faith of charity, as is evident from the fact that Jehovah or the Lord is Life, and that His Human Essence also was made Life, as shown above, and between Life and Life there is Union. Whereas man is not Life, but a recipient of life, as also has been shown before; and when Life flows into a recipient of life, there is conjunction; for it is adapted to the recipient as is the active to the passive, or as that which is in itself alive to that which is in itself dead, and which lives therefrom. The principal and the instrumental--as they are termed--do indeed appear to be conjoined together as if they were a one, but still they are not a one; for the former is by itself, and the latter is by itself. Man does not live from himself, but the Lord in mercy adjoins man to Himself and thereby causes him to live to eternity; and because the Lord and man are thus distinct, it is called conjunction.
AC 2022. To be to thee for God. That this signifies the Lord‘s Divine in Himself, is evident from what has been said above respecting the Lord’s Divine Essence, that it was in Himself.
AC 2023. And to thy seed after thee. That this signifies the Divine thence derived with those who have faith in Him, is evident from the signification of "seed," as being the faith of charity (n. 1025, 1447, 1610); and also from the signification of "after thee," as being to follow Him (n. 2019). The Divine with those who have faith in the Lord is love and charity. By Love is meant love to the Lord; by Charity, love toward the neighbor. Love to the Lord cannot possibly be separated from love toward the neighbor; for the Lord‘s love is toward the universal human race, which He wills to save eternally and to adjoin wholly to Himself, so that not one of them may perish. He therefore who has love to the Lord, has the Lord’s love, and thereby can do no otherwise than love his neighbor.
 But they who are in love toward the neighbor are not all for that reason in love to the Lord, as for example the well-disposed Gentiles who are in ignorance respecting the Lord, but with whom the Lord is nevertheless present in charity (n. 1032, 1059), and also others within the church; for love to the Lord is in a higher degree. They who have love to the Lord are celestial men, but they who have love toward the neighbor, or charity, are spiritual men. The Most Ancient Church, which was before the flood, and was celestial, was in love to the Lord but the Ancient Church, which was after the flood, and was spiritual, was in love toward the neighbor, or in charity. This distinction between Love and Charity will be observed when they are mentioned hereafter.GENESIS 17:7 previous - next - text - summary - Genesis - Full Page
|Author: E. Swedenborg (1688-1772).||Design: I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002.||www.BibleMeanings.info|