Spiritual Meaning of GENESIS 27:34-40
AC 3597. Verses 34-40. When Esau heard the words of his father, he cried with an exceeding great and bitter cry, and said unto his father, Bless me, me also, O my father. And he said, Thy brother came with fraud, and hath taken away thy blessing. And he said, Is it not that his name is called Jacob? and he hath supplanted me these two times; he hath taken away my birthright, and behold now he hath taken away my blessing. And he said, Hast thou not reserved a blessing for me? And Isaac answered and said unto Esau, Behold I have made him thy master, and all his brethren have I given to him for servants; and with corn and new wine have I sustained him; and what then shall I do for thee, my son? And Esau said unto his father, Hast thou but this one blessing, my father? Bless me, me also, O my father. And Esau lifted up his voice, and wept. And Isaac his father answered and said unto him, Behold of the fat things of the earth shall be thy dwelling, and of the dew of heaven from above. And upon thy sword shalt thou live, and shalt serve thy brother; and it shall come to pass when thou shalt have the dominion that thou shalt break his yoke from upon thy neck.
 "When Esau heard the words of his father," signifies the observation of natural good from Divine good; "he cried with an exceeding great and bitter cry," signifies its great alteration in respect to the inversion of the state "and said unto his father, bless me, me also, O my father," signifies that it longed for conjunction, even although by what had gone before truth had been conjoined; "and he said, Thy brother came with fraud," signifies what is inverted of order; and hath taken away thy blessing," signifies conjunction in that manner;
 "and he said, Is it not that his name is called Jacob," signifies its quality "and he hath supplanted me these two times," signifies that it had inverted order "he hath taken away my birthright, signifies the loss of the priority; "and behold now he hath taken away my blessing," signifies the loss of the conjunction; "and he sad, Hast thou not reserved a blessing for me," signifies whether there was for it anything in respect to conjunction in that former state;
 "and Isaac answered and said unto Esau," signifies instruction; "behold I have made him thy master," signifies that in that state it should have the dominion; "and all his brethren have I given to him for servants," signifies that to the affection of truth at that time there had apparently been subordinated the affections of good; "and with corn and new wine have I sustained him," signifies, as before, its good and truth; and what then shall I do for thee, my son," signifies that in that state there is nothing else for good;
 "and Esau said unto his father," signifies the observation of natural good; "hast thou but this one blessing, my father," signifies whether in that case anything else could be adjoined from natural good " bless me, me also, O my father," signifies that it longed for conjunction even although thereby truth had been conjoined and Esau lifted up his voice, and wept," signifies a further state of alteration
 "and Isaac his father answered and said unto him,-" signifies perception concerning natural good, that it would be made Divine "behold, of the fat things of the earth shall be thy dwelling," signifies that life is from the Divine good; "and of the dew of heaven from above," signifies that it is from the Divine truth;
 "and upon thy sword shalt thou live, and thou shalt serve thy brother," signifies that so long as truth is being conjoined with good, good will in appearance be in a lower place; "and it shall come to pass when thou shalt have the dominion," signifies that it shall be in the prior place; "that thou shalt break his yoke from upon thy neck," signifies that the conjunction would then be through good, and that truth would be of good.
AC 3598. Inasmuch as the things contained in (verses 34 to 38) are such as have been already unfolded, and what they involve may be seen from what has been already said, it is therefore needless any further to unfold them in respect to the internal sense, except that merely the things contained in (verses 39 and 40), relating to the blessing of Esau by Isaac his father, shall be illustrated.
AC 3599. And Isaac his father answered and said unto him. That this signifies perception concerning natural good, that it would be made Divine, is evident from the signification of Isaac, as being the Lord‘s Divine rational as to the Divine good therein (n. 3012, 3194, 3210); and from the signification in the historicals of the Word of "saying," as being to perceive, which has already been frequently treated of; and from the representation of Esau, to whom he spoke, as being natural good, concerning which also much has been already said. That it should be made Divine, is evident from the blessing, now to be considered. It was said above that Esau represents the Lord’s Divine natural as to Divine good, and Jacob His Divine natural as to Divine truth; but here, that Esau represents the natural good which was to be made Divine; and in what goes before, that Jacob represented the natural truth which also was to be made Divine. How the case herein is may be seen from what was said above (n. 3494, 3576); but that it may become still clearer, a few words shall be added.
 The natural good which Esau first represents is the natural good of the Lord‘s infancy, which was Divine from the Father, but human from the mother; and in so far as it was from the mother it was imbued with hereditary evil; and being such, it could not be at once in an order capable of receiving the Divine that was inmostly within it; but had first to be reduced into order by the Lord. The case is the same with the truth represented by Jacob; for where there is good there must be truth in order for there to be anything; all that which is of thought, even with infants, is of truth, adjoined to the will part which is of good. Wherefore after the Lord had reduced the natural as to good and as to truth in Himself into order, so that it might receive the Divine, and that thus He Himself might inflow from His Divine, and after by successive steps He had expelled all the human that was from the mother; then Esau represents the Lords Divine natural as to good, and Jacob His Divine natural as to truth.
 But Esau and Jacob represent the Divine good and Divine truth of the Lord’s Divine natural as conjoined with each other like brothers, which Divine good and Divine truth considered in themselves are nothing else than one simultaneous power for the formation and reception of actual good and truth. This actual good and truth are treated of later. From all this it is evident what great arcana are contained in the internal sense of the Word, which arcana are such that not even their most general points fall into the understanding of man; as possibly may be the case with the things just stated; and how then can the innumerable particulars relating thereto do so? Yet are they well adapted to the understanding and apprehension of the angels, who concerning these and the like things receive from the Lord heavenly ideas illustrated by representatives of ineffable loveliness and bliss; from which some conception may be formed of the nature of angelic wisdom, yet remotely, because such things are in the shade of the human understanding.
AC 3600. Behold of the fat things of the earth shall be thy dwelling. That this signifies that life is from Divine good; and that of the dew of heaven from above signifies that it is from Divine truth, is evident from the signification of "fatness," as being good (n. 353), here, Divine good, because it is spoken of the Lord; and from the signification of "dwelling," as being life (n. 1293, 3384), and that "dwelling" is predicated of good (n. 2268, 2451, 2712); and from the signification of the "dew of heaven," as being truth derived from the good of a state of peace and innocence (n. 3579), here, Divine truth, because it is spoken of the Lord. Similar words were spoken to Jacob, namely, "God shall give thee of the dew of heaven and of the fat things of the earth" (verse 28) but there "dew" (thus truth) is spoken of in the first place; and the "fat things of the earth" (thus good) in the second and also that"God should give" of them; whereas here in relation to Esau, the "fat things of the earth" (thus good) are spoken of in the first place; and in the second place the "dew of heaven" (thus truth) and it is not said that "God would give," but that "his dwelling should be of them;" which also shows that Jacob represents truth, and Esau good;-also that truth as apparently in the former place is first but that this is the inverse of order, according to what has already been frequently shown.
AC 3601. And upon thy sword shalt thou live, and shalt serve thy brother. That this signifies that so long as truth is being conjoined with good, good will in appearance be in a lower place, is evident from the signification of a sword," as being truth combating (n. 2799); hence to "live upon the sword" denotes while truth is being conjoined with good, for the conjunction is effected by means of combats, that is, temptations, because without these truth is not conjoined; and from the signification of "serving thy brother," as being to be in a lower place. That nevertheless good is not in a lower place, but only apparently so, is evident from what has so frequently been said above (n. 3582).
AC 3602. And it shall come to pass when thou shalt have the dominion. That this signifies that it shall be in a prior place, is evident from the signification of "having the dominion," as being to be in a prior place; on this subject see what now follows.
AC 3603. That thou shalt break his yoke from upon thy neck. That this signifies that the conjunction would then be through good, and that truth would be of good, is evident from the signification of "breaking a yoke from upon the neck," as being liberation. By the "neck" is signified influx and communication, and the consequent conjunction; and by a "yoke upon the neck" is signified restraint and interception, (n. 3542); thus "breaking the yoke from upon the neck" denotes liberation from restraint, and interception and therefore it denotes conjunction through good and also that truth becomes of good; for where there is no longer any restraint and interception, good flows in and conjoins itself with truth.
 How the case herein is may be seen from what has been already said and shown but few comprehend in what consists the apparent priority of truth and in the meanwhile the inferiority of good, and this principally because few reflect on such things, and do not even reflect upon good, in that it is distinct from truth. moreover all those are ignorant of what good is who live a life of the love of self and of the world, for they do not believe that there can be any good except that which is from this source and because they are ignorant of what good is, they are also ignorant of what truth is, for truth is of good. They do indeed know from revelation that it is good to love God and the neighbor, and that truth consists of doctrinal things derived from the Word, but inasmuch as they do not live according to these things, they have no perception of such good and truth, but merely have knowledges separated from these. Nay, even those who are being regenerated do not know what good is until they have been regenerated; for before this they supposed that truth was good, and that to do according to truth was good, when yet that which they then do is not good, but truth. When man is in this state, he is in the state which is described by "Jacob" and in the "blessing" given to him; but when he comes into a state of doing good from the affection of good-that is, when he is regenerate-he then comes into the state which is described in the blessing given to Esau.
 This may be illustrated by those things which appear with man in his first and second ages, and afterwards in his third and fourth. In his first age man knows only by memory the things contained in the Word, and in like manner what is in the doctrinal matters of faith; and he believes himself to be good when he is acquainted with many things therefrom, and can apply some of them, not to his own life, but to the life of others. In his second age, when he is more grown up, he is not content to know only by memory the things contained in the Word and in doctrine, but begins to reflect upon them from his own thought, and in so far as he adds thereto from his own thought, in so far he is pleased; and thereupon he is in the affection of truth from a kind of worldly love, which love is also the means of his learning many things that without it would be left unlearned. In his third age, if he is one of those who can be regenerated, he begins to think about use, and to reflect on what he reads in the Word and imbibes from doctrinal matters for the sake of use; and when he is in this state the order is inverted, so that truth is no longer so much put in the first place. But in his fourth age, when comes the age of his regeneration, because then the state is full (n. 2636), he loves the Lord and the doctrinal things that are from the Word-- that is, truth-for the sake of the good of life, consequently from the good of life. Thus good comes to be in the prior place, which until this time was apparently in the posterior place.
 The reason why good was apparently in the posterior place, is that it lay inmostly concealed in all his affection; nor could it manifest itself, inasmuch as outside of it there were such things as it could not agree with, namely, vain and empty things such as are those of self-glory and the glory of the world but after the man has been regenerated these things recede; and the good, which had lain inmostly concealed, comes forth as it were from its place of confinement, and flows into those things which are outside, and makes truths its own, that is, truths of good, and thus manifests itself.
 In the meantime, like that involuntary which is in his voluntary, the good in the man is in everything he thinks, and thence in everything he does. Man knows not that he has this involuntary, because he perceives nothing else in himself except that which is his own; that is, the voluntary. This involuntary is two-fold, the one being his heredity that he his from his father and mother, while the other flows in through heaven from the Lord. As a man grows up, if he is such as not to suffer himself to be regenerated, that which he has hereditarily from his parents manifests itself more and more for he takes evils from it, and makes them his own, or proper to himself. But with those who are being regenerated the involuntary which is from the Lord through heaven manifests itself in adult age; and in the meantime it has disposed and governed each and all things of their thought and also of their will, although it has not been visible.GENESIS 27:34-40 previous - next - text - summary - Genesis - Full Page
|Author: E. Swedenborg (1688-1772).||Design: I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002.||www.BibleMeanings.info|