Spiritual Meaning of GENESIS 26:24-25
AC 3437. Verses 24, 25. And Jehovah appeared to him in that night, and said, I am the God of Abraham thy father; fear not, for I am with thee, and I will bless thee, and will multiply thy seed, for the sake of Abraham My servant. And he builded an altar there, and called upon the name of Jehovah, and pitched his tent there, and there the servants of Isaac digged out a well. "And Jehovah appeared to him in that night, and said," signifies the Lord’s perception concerning that obscurity; "I am the God of Abraham thy father; fear not, for I am with thee," signifies that the Divine also was there; "and I will bless thee, and will multiply thy seed," signifies that thence would be increase of good and truth; "for the sake of Abraham My servant," signifies from the Lord‘s Divine Human; "and he builded an altar there," signifies a significative and representative of the Lord; "and called upon the name of Jehovah," signifies worship thence "and pitched his tent there," signifies what is holy therein; "and there the servants of Isaac digged out a well," signifies doctrine thence derived.
AC 3438. And Jehovah appeared to him in that night, and said. This signifies the Lord’s perception concerning that obscurity, which is evident from the signification of "Jehovah appearing and saying," when predicated of the Lord, as being to perceive from the Divine. By "Jehovah appearing to him" is signified from the Divine, (n. 3367); and "saying" denotes perceiving, (n. 2862, 3395); for Jehovah was in Him; thus so long as the human was not yet glorified, the appearing of Jehovah was Divine perception, or perception from the Divine; and therefore by "Jehovah appearing to him and saying" this is signified;--and from the signification of "night," as being a state of shade or obscurity (n. 1712). By this obscurity is signified the literal sense of the Word, for relatively to the internal sense this is as shade to light.
 A few words shall be said in order that it may be further known how the case is with the literal sense of the Word. Relatively to the literal sense, the internal sense is like the interior or celestial and spiritual things of a man relatively to his exterior or natural and bodily things, his interiors being in the light of heaven, and his exteriors in the light of the world. What the difference is between the light of heaven and the light of the world, consequently between what is of the light of heaven and what is of the light of the world, may be seen above (n. 1521-1533, 1619-1632, 1783, 1880, 2776, 3138, 3167, 3190, 3195, 3222, 3223, 3225, 3337, 3339, 3341, 3413), namely, that it is like the difference between the light of day and the shade of night. Man, being in this shade, and not being willing to know that in truth from the Lord there is light, cannot believe otherwise than that his shade is light, and also on the other hand that the light is shade; for he is like a bird of night, which as it flies in the shade of night thinks that it is in the light but when in the light of day, that it is in the shade. For with such a person the internal eye (that is, the understanding), by which man sees interiorly, has been formed no differently than this, because he has not formed it differently; for he opens it when he looks downward, that is, to worldly and bodily things, and shuts it when he should look upward, that is, to spiritual and heavenly things. With such persons the case is the same in respect to the Word that which appears in its literal sense they believe to be of light; but that which appears in the internal sense they believe to be of shade (for the Word appears to every one in accordance with his quality) the fact being that relatively to its literal sense the internal sense of the Word is as the light of heaven to the light of the world (n. 3086, 3108); that is, as the light of day to the light of night.
 In the internal sense there are singulars, myriads of which together make one particular that is presented in the literal sense or what is the same, in the internal sense there are particulars, myriads of which together make in the literal sense one general; and it is this general that is seen by man, but not the particulars which are in it and which constitute it. Nevertheless the order of the particulars in the general is apparent to man, but in accordance with his quality; and this order is the holiness that affects him.
AC 3439. I am the God of Abraham thy father; fear not, for I am with thee. That this signifies that the Divine also was therein, namely, in the literal sense of the Word, is evident from the representation of Abraham, as being the Lord‘s Divine (n. 2833, 2836, 3251, 3305); hence Jehovah the "God of Abraham" signifies the Lord’s Divine which is represented by Abraham; and because the subject treated of is the Word, which also is the Lord, because all the Word is from Him and everything of the Word is concerning Him, therefore by "I am the God of Abraham thy father, fear not, for I am with thee" is signified that the Divine also is therein. As regards the Divine in the Word, the case is this: The Divine Itself is in the supreme sense of the Word, because therein is the Lord the Divine is also in the internal sense, because therein is the Lord‘s kingdom in the heavens, and hence this sense is called celestial and spiritual the Divine is also in the literal sense of the Word, because therein is the Lord’s kingdom in the earths; hence this sense is called the external, and also the natural, sense, for in it are gross appearances more remote from the Divine and yet the things therein are each and all Divine. With these three senses the case is as with the tabernacle: its inmost, or what was within the veil, where was the ark containing the testimony, was most holy, or the holy of holies; its internal, or what was immediately without the veil, where were the golden table and candlestick, was holy; and the external, where the court was, was also holy; in it the congregation assembled, and hence it was called the tent of the assembly.
AC 3440. And I will bless thee, and will multiply thy seed. This signifies that thence would be an increase of good and truth, which is evident from the signification of "blessing thee," as being an increase of good (n. 3406); and from the signification of "multiplying thy seed," as being an increase of truth (n. 43, 55, 913, 983, 2846, 2847). "Seed" denotes truth, of which "multiplying" is predicated, (n. 1025, 1447, 1610, 2848, 3038, 3373, 3380). That there is an increase of good and truth with man from the literal sense of the Word also, is that in this sense also each and all things are Divine, as just stated (n. 3439), and also because in many passages of the literal sense the internal sense is open as for instance in the Prophets of the Old Testament that the Lord would come who would be the salvation of the human race; that the whole Law and Prophets consist in loving God and the neighbor and that "to kill" is to bear hatred, because the man who hates kills every moment, this being in his will and in the delight of his life. These are of the internal sense in the literal sense, besides many other such things.
AC 3441. For the sake of Abraham My servant. That this signifies from the Lord‘s Divine Human, is evident from the representation of Abraham, as being the Lord’s Divine, and also the Divine Human (n. 2833, 2836, 3251); and from the signification of "My servant," when predicated of the Lord, as being the Divine Human; not that the Divine Human is a servant, because this also is Jehovah (n. 1736, 2156, 2329, 2921, 3023, 3035), but because the Lord by this serves the human race; for by this man is saved, inasmuch as unless the Lord had united the Human to the Divine, so that man might be enabled with his mind to look upon and adore the Human of the Lord and thus have access to the Divine, He could not possibly have been saved. The conjunction of man with the Divine Itself which is called the "Father" is through the Divine Human which is called the "Son;" thus through the Lord, by whom the spiritual man understands the Human, but the celestial man the Divine Itself. Hence it is evident why the Divine Human is called a "servant," namely, because it serves the Divine, in order that man may have access thereto, and because it serves mankind for their salvation.
 This then is what is signified by "Abraham My servant," as also in David:--
Remember His marvelous works that He hath done, His wonders and the judgments of His mouth, O ye seed of Abraham His servant, ye sons of Jacob, His chosen ones. He sent Moses His servant, Aaron whom He hath chosen. He remembered the word of His holiness with Abraham His servant (Ps. 105:5, 6, 26, 42);
where by "Abraham His servant" is meant the Lord as to the Divine Human. In like manner also the Lord as to the Divine Human is meant in the supreme sense by "Israel His servant," by "Jacob His servant," and by "David His servant;" by Israel His servant, in Isaiah:--
Thou Israel My servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham My friend; thou whom I have taken hold of from the ends of the earth, and called thee from the wings thereof, and said unto thee, Thou art My servant, I have chosen thee (Isa. 41:8, 9);
where "Israel My servant" in the supreme sense is the Lord in respect to the internal things of the spiritual church and "Jacob," as to the external things of this church. Again:--
He said unto me, Thou art My servant Israel, in whom I will be glorified. It is a light thing that thou shouldest be My servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to bring back the preserved of Israel; and I have given thee for a light of the Gentiles, that thou mayest be My salvation unto the end of the earth (Isa. 49:3, 6);
where "Israel, in whom I will be glorified," manifestly represents the Lord‘s Divine Human. That He is called servant" from serving, is manifest, for it is said, "that thou shouldest be My servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to bring back the preserved of Israel."
 That the Lord as to His Divine Human is meant also by "Jacob My servant," is evident in the following passage from Isaiah:--
I will give thee the treasures of darkness, and hidden riches of secret places, for Jacob My servants sake, and Israel My chosen (Isa. 45:3, 4);
where by "Jacob My servant, and Israel My chosen" is meant the Lord, ""Jacob My servant" having respect to the external things of the church, and "Israel My chosen" to the internal things of the church.
 The same is also signified by "David My servant" in Ezekiel:--
I will gather the sons of Israel from every side. My servant David shall be king over them; there shall be to them all one shepherd. They shall dwell upon the land which I have given unto Jacob My servant, and they shall dwell therein, they and their sons and their sons’ sons even forever; and David My servant shall be their prince forever (Ezek. 37:21, 24, 25).
"David My servant" plainly denotes the Lord‘s Divine Human (n. 1888), and this from Divine truth, which is signified by "king," and here by "David" (n. 1728, 2015, 3009). That truth itself also is relatively a servant, may be seen above (n. 3409); and because it is so, the Lord Himself calls Himself one that serveth" or ministereth," in Mark:--
Whosoever would become great among you shall be your minister; and whosoever would be first among you shall be servant of all. For the Son also came not to be ministered unto, but to minister (Mark 10:43-45; Matt. 20:26-28).
And in Luke:--
Which is the greater, he that reclineth at meat, or he that ministereth? Is not he that reclineth at meat? But I am in the midst of you as he that ministereth (Luke 22:27).
AC 3442. And he builded an altar there. That this signifies a significative and representative of the Lord, is evident from the signification of an "altar," as being the principal representative of the Lord (n. 921, 2777, 2811).
AC 3443. And called upon the name of Jehovah. That this signifies worship thence, is evident from the signification of "calling on the name of Jehovah," as being worship (n. 440, 2724); and that the "name of Jehovah" is everything in one complex whereby the Lord is worshiped (n. 2628, 2724, 3006).
AC 3444. And pitched his tent there. That this signifies what is holy therein, is evident from the signification of "tent," as being the holy of worship (n. 414, 1102, 2145, 2152, 3312).
AC 3445. And there the servants of Isaac digged out a well. That this signifies doctrine therefrom, is evident from the signification of a "well," as being the Word (n. 2702, 3424); and because the Word is doctrine itself, and thus all the doctrine which is of the church is from the Word, to "dig out a well" signifies doctrine therefrom, namely, from the literal sense of the Word, because this sense is here treated of. But doctrine itself from the literal sense of the Word is one only, namely, the doctrine of charity and love--of charity toward the neighbor and of love to the Lord; for this doctrine and life according to it is the whole Word, as the Lord teaches in (Matt. 22:37-40). GENESIS 26:24-25 previous - next - text - summary - Genesis - Full Page
|Author: E. Swedenborg (1688-1772).||Design: I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002.||www.BibleMeanings.info|