Spiritual Meaning of GENESIS 22:2
AC 2771. Verse 2. And He said, Take I pray thy son, thine only one, whom thou lovest, even Isaac, and get thee to the land of Moriah, and offer him there for a burnt-offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of. "He said, Take I pray thy son," signifies the Divine rational begotten by Him; "thine only one, whom thou lovest," signifies the sole one in the universe by which He was to save the human race; "even Isaac," signifies its quality; "and get thee to the land of Moriah," signifies a place and state of temptation; "and offer him there for a burnt-offering," signifies that He should sanctify Himself to the Divine; "upon one of the mountains," signifies the Divine Love; "which I will tell thee of," signifies as He should perceive.
AC 2772. He said, Take I pray thy son. That this signifies the Divine rational begotten by Him, is evident from the signification of a "son," as being the rational (n. 2623); here the Divine rational, because by the son is meant Isaac; and that he represents the Lord’s Divine rational has been shown above (n. 1893, 2066, 2083, 2630). And as the Lord made His rational Divine by His own power, as has been often said, by "thy son" is also signified that it was begotten by Him (n. 1893, 2093, 2625).
AC 2773. Thine only one, whom thou lovest. That this signifies the only one in the universe by which He was to save the human race, is evident from the signification of the "only one," as being the sole and indeed the only one in the universe, because the Lord is treated of, who alone as to all His Human became God, or Divine.
AC 2774. Even Isaac. That this signifies the quality of the rational, namely, as being the good of truth and the truth of good, that is, the Divine marriage as to the Lord‘s Human, is evident from the naming of Isaac (Genesis 21:6, 7).
AC 2775. And get thee to the land of Moriah. That this signifies a place and state of temptation, they be seen from the signification of the "land of Moriah." That the "land of Moriah" means a place of temptation, is manifest from Abraham’s being commanded to go thither and offer up his son as a burnt-offering, and thus to undergo the extremity of temptation. That Jerusalem, where the Lord Himself endured the extremity of temptation, was in the same land, is evident from the fact that an altar was built by David on Mount Moriah, and afterwards the temple by Solomon; as is manifest from the book of Chronicles:--
Solomon began to build the house of Jehovah in Jerusalem, on Mount Moriah, which was seen by David his father, in the place which David prepared in the threshing-floor of Ornan (Araunah) the Jebusite (2 Chron. 3:1; 1 Chron. 21:16-28; 2 Sam. 24:16-25).
From this it is sufficiently evident that these things which are said respecting the sacrificing of Isaac are representative of the Lord; otherwise this might have been done where Abraham was then tarrying; and he would not have been commanded to proceed from thence a journey of nearly three days.
AC 2776. And offer him there for a burnt-offering. That this signifies that He should sanctify Himself to the Divine, is evident from the representation of a burnt-offering among the Hebrew nation and in the Jewish church, as being the most holy thing of their worship. There were burnt-offerings and there were sacrifices, and what these represented may be seen above (n. 922, 923, 1823, 2180). Their sanctifications were made by means of them, and hence it is that by "offering up for a burnt-offering" is here signified to be sanctified to the Divine, for the Lord Himself sanctified Himself to the Divine, that is, united His Human to His Divine by the combats and victories of temptations (n. 1663, 1690, 1691, 1692, 1737, 1787, 1812, 1813, 1820).
 It is a common belief at this day that the burnt-offerings and sacrifices signified the Lord‘s passion, and that by this the Lord made expiation for the iniquities of all; indeed, that He took them upon Himself, and thus bore them; and that those who believe are in this manner justified and saved, provided they think, even though it were in the last hour before death, that the Lord suffered for them, no matter how they may have lived during the whole course of their life. But the case is not really so: the passion of the cross was the extremity of the Lord’s temptation, by which He fully united His Human to His Divine and His Divine to His Human, and thus glorified Himself. This very union is the means by which those who have the faith in Him which is the faith of charity, can be saved. For the supreme Divine Itself could no longer reach to the human race, which had removed itself so far from the celestial things of love and the spiritual things of faith, that men no longer even acknowledged them, and still less perceived them. In order therefore that the supreme Divine might be able to come down to man in such a state, the Lord came into the world and united His Human to the Divine in Himself; which union could not be effected otherwise than by the most grievous combats of temptations and by victories, and at length by the last, which was that of the cross.
 Hence it is that the Lord can from His Divine Human illumine minds, even those far removed from the celestial things of love, provided they are in the faith of charity. For the Lord in the other life appears to the celestial angels as a Sun, and to the spiritual as a Moon (n. 1053, 1521, 1529, 1530, 2441, 2495), whence comes all the light of heaven. This light of heaven is of such a nature that when it illumines the sight of spirits and angels, it also illumines their understanding at the same time. This is inherent in that light, so that in heaven so much as anyone has of external light, so much has he of internal light, that is, so much of understanding; which shows wherein the light of heaven differs from the light of the world. It is the Lord‘s Divine Human which illuminates both the sight and the understanding of the spiritual; which would not take place if the Lord had not united His Human Essence to His Divine Essence; and if He had not united them, man in the world would no longer have had any capacity of understanding and perceiving what is good and true, nor indeed would a spiritual angel in heaven have had any; so that they would have had nothing of blessedness and happiness, consequently nothing of salvation. From this we can see that the human race could not have been saved unless the Lord had assumed the Human and glorified it.
 Hence then anyone may infer what truth there is in the idea that men are saved if they only think from a kind of interior emotion that the Lord suffered for them, and took away their sins, however they may have lived; whereas the light of heaven from the Lord’s Divine Human cannot reach to any but those who live in the good of faith, that is, in charity; or what is the same, those who have conscience. The very plane into which that light can operate, or the receptacle of that light, is the good of faith, or charity, and thus conscience. That the spiritual have salvation from the Lord‘s Divine Human, see (n. 1043, 2661, 2716, 2718).
AC 2777. Upon one of the mountains. That this signifies the Divine Love, is evident from the signification of a "mountain," as being love (n. 795, 796, 1430); here, the Divine Love, because it is predicated of the Lord; and what the quality of this love is, may be seen above (n. 1690, 1691, 1789, 1812, 1820, 2077, 2253, 2500, 2572). As it was the Divine Love from which the Lord fought in temptations and conquered, and by which He sanctified and glorified Himself, it is here said to Abraham that he should offer up Isaac for a burnt-offering upon one of the mountains in the land of Moriah. This representative is elucidated by the fact that an altar was built by David, and the temple was built by Solomon, upon the mountain of Moriah (n. 2775); for the altar upon which burnt-offerings and sacrifices were offered, was the principal representative of the Lord, as was afterwards the temple. That the altar was so may be seen above (n. 921); and it is evident in David:--
Let them bring me to the mountain of Thy holiness, and to Thy tabernacles and I will go unto the altar of God, unto God, the gladness of my joy (Ps. 43:3, 4).
That the temple was so too, is evident in John:--
Jesus said, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. He spake of the temple of His body (John 2:19, 21).
AC 2778. Which I will tell thee of. That this signifies as He should perceive, is evident from the signification of "saying," as being to perceive (n. 2769). GENESIS 22:2 previous - next - text - summary - Genesis - Full Page
|Author: E. Swedenborg (1688-1772).||Design: I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002.||www.BibleMeanings.info|