Spiritual Meaning of GENESIS 18:32
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AC 2282. Verse 32. And he said, Oh let not my Lord be angry, and I will speak but this once: peradventure ten shall be found there; and He said, I will not destroy it for tenís sake. "He said, Oh let not my Lord be angry, and I will speak but this once," signifies anxiety still continued concerning the state of the human race; peradventure ten shall be found there," signifies if there should still be remains; "and He said, I will not destroy it for tenĎs sake," signifies that they will be saved.

AC 2283. He said, Oh let not my Lord be angry, and I will speak but this once. That this signifies anxiety still continued concerning the state of the human race, is evident from the affection of these words (n. 2275), where the same words occur.

AC 2284. Peradventure ten shall be found there. That this signifies if there should still be remains, is evident from the signification of the number "ten," as being remains (n. 576, 1738). What remains are has been stated and shown before in various places (n. 468, 530, 560, 561, 660, 661, 1050, 1738, 1906), namely, that they are all the good and all the truth with man which lie stored up in his memories and in his life.

[2] It is well known that there is nothing good and nothing true, except from the Lord; and also that what is good and true is continually inflowing from the Lord into man, but that it is received in various ways, and in fact in accordance with the life of evil, and in accordance with the principles of falsity in which the man has confirmed himself. These are what either quench, or stifle, or pervert the goods and truths that are continually flowing in from the Lord Lest therefore goods should be commingled with evils, and truths with falsities (for if they were commingled the man would perish eternally), the Lord separates them, and stores up in his interior man the goods and truths which the man receives; whence He will never permit them to come forth so long as the man is in evil and falsity, but only at such a time as he is in a holy state, or in some anxiety, sickness, or other trouble. These things which the Lord has thus stored up with man are what are called "remains," of which very much mention is made in the Word; but it has not yet been known to anyone that this is what they signify.

[3] According to the quality and quantity of the remains--that is, of the good and truth with a man--does he enjoy bliss and happiness in the other life; for, as has been said, these remains are stored up in his interior man, and they are opened at the time when the man has left corporeal and worldly things behind. The Lord alone knows the quality and extent of the remains in a man; the man himself cannot possibly know this, for at the present day man is of such a character that he is able to counterfeit what is good, while within there is nothing but evil; and a man may also appear to be evil and yet have good within. On this account no man is ever allowed to judge concerning the quality of the spiritual life of another, for the Lord alone, as before said, knows this; but every one may judge of another in regard to the quality of his moral and civil life, for this concerns society.

[4] It is very common for those who have taken up an opinion respecting any truth of faith, to judge of others that they cannot be saved, unless they believe as they did judgment which the Lord has forbidden (Matt. 7:1, 2). On the other hand, I have learned from much experience that men of every religion are saved, provided that by a life of charity they have received remains of good and of apparent truth. This is what is meant by its being said that if ten were found, they should not be destroyed for the tenís sake; by which is signified that they would be saved if there were remains.

[5] The life of charity consists in thinking kindly of another, and in wishing him well; and in perceiving joy in oneĎs self from the fact that others also are saved. But those have not the life of charity who desire that none should be saved except those who believe as they do; and especially is this the case with those who are indignant that it is otherwise. This may be seen from the mere fact that more from the Gentiles are saved than from Christians; for those Gentiles who have thought kindly of their neighbor and have wished well to him, receive the truths of faith in the other life better than those who are called Christians, and acknowledge the Lord more than Christians do. For nothing is more delightful and blessed to the angels than to instruct those who come from the earth into the other life.

AC 2285. I will not destroy it for tenís sake. That this signifies that they will be saved, is evident from the series of the things in the internal sense, and thus without any unfolding of the meaning.

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