Spiritual Meaning of GENESIS 19:14
AC 2398. Verse 14. And Lot went out and spake to his sons-in-law, that were to marry his daughters, and said, Up, get you out of this place, for Jehovah will destroy the city. And he was in the eyes of his sons-in-law as one that jested. "Lot went out," signifies those who are in the good of charity, and also the good itself of charity; "and spake to his sons-in-law, that were to marry his daughters," signifies with those who were in truths, with which the affections of good could be adjoined; "and said, Up, get you out of this place," signifies that they should not remain in a state of evil; "for Jehovah will destroy the city," signifies that they must needs perish; "and he was in the eyes of his sons-in-law as one that jested," signifies derision.
AC 2399. And Lot went out. That this signifies those who are in the good of charity, and also the good itself of charity, has been repeatedly shown before. He who represents those who are in good, also signifies that good itself in which they are.
AC 2400. And spake to his sons-in-law, that were to marry his daughters. That this signifies with those who were in truths, with which the affections of good could be conjoined, is evident from the signification of "sons-in-law," as being the knowledges of truth, and consequently truths (n. 2389); and from the signification of "daughters," as being the affections of good (n. 2362); and because it is said that he "spake to his sons-in-law, that were to marry his daughters," it is signified with those who were in truths with which the affections of good could be conjoined. As they could be conjoined, they are called his "sons-in-law;" but as they were not conjoined, it is said "that were to marry his daughters."
 The subject here treated of is the third kind of men who are within the church, namely, those who know truths, yet live in evil. For there are three kinds of men within the church: first, those who live in the good of charity; these are represented by "Lot;" second, those who are altogether in falsity and evil, and reject both truth and good; these are they who are represented by the "men of Sodom;" third, those who indeed know truths, but nevertheless are in evil; these are here signified by the "sons-in-law," and are especially those who teach, but the truth which they teach has not sent down its root deeper than is wont to do the knowledge that is solely of the memory, for it is learned and vaunted merely for the sake of honor and gain. And because with such persons the ground in which the truth is sown is the love of self and the love of the world, they have no belief in the truth, except a kind of persuasive one derived from these loves, the quality of which shall of the Lord‘s Divine mercy be told elsewhere. Such are here described by the sons-in-law, in that they believed nothing concerning the overthrow of Sodom, but laughed at it; and such is the faith of their heart.
AC 2401. And said, Up, get you out of this place. That this signifies that they should not remain in a state of evil, is evident from the signification of "rising up," and of "getting out," and also of the "place." To "rise up" often occurs in the Word, but excites little thought as to what it further signifies, because it is a familiar expression. But in the internal sense this expression involves elevation, as here, from evil to good; for the mind is elevated when it recedes from evil (n. 2388). To "get out" is to recede, or not to remain. And the "place" is a state of evil (n. 2393). Thus the signification is evident.
 The quality of those who are in the knowledges of truth, but at the same time in a life of evil, has been repeatedly stated before, namely, that so long as they are in a life of evil they believe nothing; for to will evil and from will to do evil, and at the same time to acknowledge truth in faith, is not possible. This shows also that a man cannot be saved by thinking and speaking what is true, nor even what is good, while he wills nothing else, and from this his will does nothing else, than evil. It is the very will of man that lives after death; not so his thought, except that which flows from his will.
 As therefore a man is such as his will is, it is evident what must be his opinion of the truths of faith he has learned, and even taught, seeing that they condemn him. So far is he then from making them the basis of his thoughts, that he feels a positive aversion for them; nay, in so far as he is permitted to do so, he, like the devil’s crew, blaspheme them. They who have not been instructed concerning the life after death may suppose that it will be easy for them to receive faith when they see that the Lord governs the universe, and when they hear that heaven consists in loving the Lord and the neighbor; whereas the truth is that the evil are as far from being able to receive faith, that is, to believe from the will, as hell is from heaven, for they are wholly in evil, and in the falsity thence derived. That such persons are against the Lord and against the neighbor, and therefore against good, and consequently against truth, is known and perceived from their mere approach, or presence. There is a horrible sphere that exhales from the life of their will and of their derivative thought (n. 1048, 1053, 1316, 1504).
 If by mere instruction in the other life it were possible that men could be brought to believe and to become good, there would not be a single person in hell; for the Lord desires to raise all without exception to Himself into heaven. For His mercy is infinite, because it is the Divine mercy itself, that is extended toward the whole human race, and therefore toward the evil as well as toward the good.
AC 2402. For Jehovah will destroy the city. That this signifies that they must needs perish, is evident from the explication of nearly the same words above (n. 2395, 2397).
AC 2403. And he was in the eyes of his sons-in-law as one that jested. That this signifies derision, is evident from the signification of "jesting," as being to utter as it were a joke, a fable, or trifles, thus such things as they would laugh at. "In their eyes," signifies that which was before their rational, as is evident from the signification of the "eyes" (n. 212). This shows what is the character of those who are in the truth of faith and not at the same time in the good of life. GENESIS 19:14 previous - next - text - summary - Genesis - Full Page
|Author: E. Swedenborg (1688-1772).||Design: I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002.||www.BibleMeanings.info|