Spiritual Meaning of GENESIS 26:4-5
AC 3377. Verses 4, 5. And I will cause thy seed to be multiplied as the stars of the heavens, and I will give unto thy seed all these lands; and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because that Abraham hearkened to My voice, and kept My charge, My commandments, My statutes, and My laws. "And I will cause thy seed to be multiplied as the stars of the heavens," signifies truths and the knowledges of faith; "and I will give unto thy seed all these lands," signifies the churches thence derived; "and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed," signifies all those who are in good both within and without the church; "because that Abraham hearkened to My voice," signifies the union of the Lord‘s Divine Essence with the Human Essence through temptations; "and kept My charge, My commandments, My statutes, and My laws," signifies through continuous revelations from Himself.
AC 3378. And I will cause thy seed to be multiplied as the stars of the heavens. That this signifies truths and the knowledges of faith, is evident from the signification of "seed," as being truths (n. 3373) and from the signification of "stars," as being the knowledges of faith (n. 2495, 2849).
AC 3379. And I will give unto thy seed all these lands. That this signifies the churches thence derived, is evident from the signification of "seed," as being truths, thus those who are in truths, who are on this account called the "sons of the kingdom" (n. 3373) and from the signification of "lands," as being the rational things which when enlightened by the Divine are appearances of truth (n. 3368) thus those who are in rational things that are enlightened by the Divine; or what is the same those who are in heavenly light; and as those only are in such light who are in the Lord’s kingdom in the heavens (that is, in heaven) and who are in His kingdom on earth (that is, in the churches), it is evident that by these "lands" are signified the churches for churches are not churches because they are so called, and because they profess the Lord‘s name; but because they are in the good and truth of faith. The good and truth of faith is that which constitutes the church, yea, which is the church, for in the good and truth of faith is the Lord, and where the Lord is, there is the church.
AC 3380. And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed That this signifies all who are in good, both within and without the church, is evident from the signification of "being blessed," as being to be made fruitful in good and to be multiplied in truths (n. 981, 1422, 1731, 2846, 3140); from the signification of "seed," as being the goods and truths which are from the Lord (n. 3373); and from the signification of the "nations of the earth," as being all who are in good (n. 1259, 1260, 1416, 1849). Thus by "all the nations of the earth being blessed in thy seed," is signified that through the good and truth which are from the Lord all are saved who live in mutual charity, whether they are within the church or without it. The Gentiles who are without the church and who are in good are equally saved, (n. 593, 932, 1032, 1059, 1327, 1328, 2049, 2051, 2284, 2589-2604, 2861, 2986, 3263).
AC 3381. Because that Abraham hearkened to My voice. That this signifies the union of the Lord’s Divine Essence with the Human Essence through temptations, is evident from the representation of Abraham, as being the Lord as to the Divine Human also (n. 2833, 2836, 3251) and from the signification of "hearkening to My voice," when predicated of the Lord, as being to unite the Divine Essence to the Human through temptations for in the Word it is from these that obedience is predicated of the Lord. What is here said has reference to that which is related concerning Abraham in the 12th chapter, namely, that God tempted him, and said unto him that he should take his son and offer him for a burnt-offering (Gen. 22:1, 2); and when he hearkened to this voice, it is said:--
Now I know that thou fearest God, and thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only one, from Me. In Myself have I sworn saith Jehovah, because thou hast done this word, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only one, that in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heavens (Gen. 22:12, 16, 17);
that by "not withholding thy son, thine only one, from Me" (which was " hearkening to the voice") is signified the unition of the Human with the Divine through the last of temptation, may be seen above (n. 2827, 2844). That this is meant by "hearkening to the voice of Jehovah," or "the Father," is evident also from the words of the Lord in Gethsemane:--
My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me nevertheless not My will but Thine be done: again a second time, My Father, if this cup cannot pass from Me except I drink it, Thy will he done (Matt. 26:39, 42 Mark 14:36 Luke 22:42).
But inasmuch as Jehovah or the Father was in Him, or He in the Father and the Father in Him (John 14:10, 11), by "hearkening to the voice of Jehovah" is meant that the Lord united the Divine to the Human through temptations, by His own power; as is also evident from the words of the Lord Himself in John:--
As the Father knoweth Me, and I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep. Therefore doth the Father love Me, because I lay down My life, that I may take it again. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received from My Father (John 10:15, 17, 18).
The Lord by His own power united His Divine Essence to His Human Essence through temptations, (n. 1663, 1668, 1690, 1691, 1725, 1729, 1733, 1737, 1787, 1789, 1812, 1820, 2776, 3318).
AC 3382. And kept My charge, My commandments, My statutes, and My laws. That this signifies by means of continuous revelations from Himself - that is to say, as by means of temptations, so also by means of these revelations the Lord united the Divine Essence to the Human - as evident from the fact that these words, "keeping His charge, commandments, statutes, and laws," involve all things of the Word namely, "charge," all things of the Word in general; commandments," the internal things statutes, - " the external things and "laws," all things specifically. Inasmuch as this is predicated of the Lord, who from eternity was the Word, and from whom all these things are, in the internal sense it cannot he signified that He observed these things, but that He revealed them to Himself when He was in a state of unition of the Human with the Divine.
 These things do indeed appear at first view rather remote from the sense of the letter, and even from the proximate internal sense; but still when the words are read by man, this is their sense in heaven; for, as occasionally before said, and as may be seen from examples given (n. 1873, 1874), in its ascent toward heaven the sense of the letter is put off; and instead of it another heavenly sense comes into view, so different that it cannot he known to be from the same source. For they who are in heaven are in the idea that in the internal sense all things of the Word treat of the Lord; and also that all things of the Word are from the Lord; likewise that when He was in the world the Lord thought from the Divine and thus from Himself, and acquired for Himself all intelligence and wisdom through continuous revelations from the Divine; and therefore from the above words they perceive nothing else. For "keeping the charge, commandments, statutes, and laws," is not predicable of the Lord, because He Himself was the Word,. consequently He Himself was the charge, He Himself was the commandment, He Himself the statute, and He Himself the law; for all these things have respect to Him as the First from whom they are derived, and as the Last to whom they tend. Therefore in the supreme sense by the above words nothing else can be signified than the unition of the Lord‘s Divine with the Human, through continuous revelations from Himself. Differently from other men, the Lord thought from the Divine, thus from Himself, (n. 1904, 1914, 1935); and He acquired for Himself intelligence and wisdom by means of continuous revelations from the Divine, (n. 1616, 2500, 2523, 2632).
 That in the genuine sense "keeping the charge" signifies all things of the Word in general and that "commandments" signify the internal things of the Word " statutes," the external things and "laws," all things of the Word specifically, may be seen from many passages as viewed in the internal sense; some of which may be adduced. Thus in David:--
Blessed are the perfect in the way, who walk in the law of Jehovah. Blessed are they that keep His testimonies. O that my ways were directed to keep Thy statutes. I will keep Thy statutes O forsake me not utterly. With my whole heart have I sought Thee O let me not wander from Thy commandments Thy Word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against Thee. Blessed art Thou, O Jehovah, teach me Thy statutes. With my lips have I declared all the judgments of Thy mouth. I have rejoiced in the way of Thy testimonies. I meditate in Thy precepts; and have respect unto Thy ways. I delight myself in Thy statutes; I do not forget Thy Word. Recompense unto Thy servant, that I may live, so will I keep Thy Word. Open Thou mine eyes that I may behold wondrous things out of Thy law. Hide not Thy commandments from me. Quicken Thou me according to Thy Word. Teach me Thy statutes make me to understand the way of Thy precepts (Ps. 119:1-27).
Throughout this whole Psalm the subject treated of is the Word and the things of the Word, which are manifestly its "precepts," "statutes," "judgments," " testimonies," "commandments," and "ways;" but what these signify specifically cannot possibly be seen from the sense of the letter, in which sense they are scarcely more than repetitions of the same thing; hut it may be seen from the internal sense, in which one thing is signified by "precepts," and quite different ones by "statutes," "judgments," "testimonies," " commandments," and "ways."
 Again in like manner:--
The law of Jehovah is perfect, restoring the soul; the testimony of Jehovah is sure, making wise the simple. The precepts of Jehovah are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of Jehovah is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of Jehovah is clean, standing forever the judgments of Jehovah are truth (Ps. 19:7-9).
And in the first book of Kings:--
David charged Solomon his son, saying, Keep the charge of Jehovah thy God, to walk in His ways, to keep His statutes, and His commandments, and His judgments, and His testimonies, according to that which is written in the law of Moses (1 Kings 2:3).
"Keeping the charge" denotes all things of the Word in general, for it is mentioned in the first place, and looks to the things following as being less general; for "keeping the charge" is the same thing as "keeping that which is to be kept." In Moses:--
Thou shalt love Jehovah thy God, and keep His charge, and his statutes, and His judgments, and His commandments alway (Deut. 11:1);
where "keeping His charge," or keeping that which was to be kept, in like manner denotes all things of the Word in general; "statutes" denote the external things of the Word, such as rituals and those things which are representative and significative of the internal sense; but "commandments," the internal things of the Word, such as those of life and doctrine, especially those which are of the internal sense. But concerning the signification of " commandments" and "statutes," of the Lord’s Divine mercy elsewhere.GENESIS 26:4-5 previous - next - text - summary - Genesis - Full Page
|Author: E. Swedenborg (1688-1772).||Design: I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002.||www.BibleMeanings.info|