Spiritual Meaning of GENESIS 46:1
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AC 5995. Verse 1. And Israel journeyed, and all that he had, and came to Beersheba, and sacrificed sacrifices to the God of his father Isaac. "And Israel journeyed, and all that he had," signifies the beginning of conjunction; "and came to Beersheba," signifies charity and faith; "and sacrificed sacrifices to the God of his father Isaac," signifies worship therefrom, and influx from the Divine intellectual.

AC 5996. And Israel journeyed, and all that he had. That this signifies the beginning of conjunction, is evident from the signification of "journeying," as being what is successive and continuous (n. 4375, 4882, 5493); here, what was continuous and successive in the glorification of the Lord, who in the supreme sense is "Israel" and "Joseph;" but in the internal sense, what is continuous and successive in the regeneration of man. And as in this chapter the subject of the conjunction of the natural man with the spiritual, or of the external with the internal, now succeeds and is continued, therefore by the words "Israel journeyed, and all that he had" is signified the beginning of this conjunction.

AC 5997. And came to Beersheba. That this signifies charity and faith, is evident from the signification of "Beersheba," as being the doctrine of charity and of faith (n. 2858, 2859, 3466), but here, charity and faith, and not their doctrine, for it is predicated of spiritual good, which is "Israel." Spiritual good is more than doctrine, doctrine being from this good; and therefore he who has arrived at spiritual good has no more need of doctrinal things, which are from others; for he is in the end whither he was tending, and is no longer in the means thereto; and doctrinal things are nothing but the means of arriving at good as the end. This is the reason why by "Beersheba" is signified charity and faith.

AC 5998. And sacrificed sacrifices to the God of his father Isaac. That this signifies worship therefrom and influx from the Divine intellectual, is evident from the signification of sacrificing sacrifices," as being worship (n. 922, 923, 2180);and from the representation of Isaac, as being in the supreme sense the Divine rational or intellectual of the Lord (n. 1893, 2066, 2072, 2083, 2630, 3012, 3194, 3210). That influx therefrom into worship is signified, follows, for the worship meant is that from charity and faith, which are signified by "Beersheba" (n. 5997), where he sacrificed. That Jacob sacrificed to the God of his father Isaac, shows what was the nature of the fathers of the Jewish and Israelitish nation, namely, that each of them worshiped his own God. That the God of Isaac was a God other than Jacobís, is evident from the fact that he sacrificed to him, and that in the visions of the night it was said unto him, "I am God, the God of thy father;" and also from the fact that he sware by the same in these words: "The God of Abraham, and the God of Nahor, the God of their father, judge between us; and Jacob sware by the Dread of his father Isaac" (Gen. 31:53). And it is also evident that at first Jacob did not acknowledge Jehovah, for he said, "If God will be with me, and will keep me in this way in which I walk, and will give me bread to eat, and garment to put on, and I return in peace to my fatherĎs house, then shall Jehovah be my God" (Gen. 28:20, 21). Thus he acknowledged Jehovah conditionally.

[2] It was their custom to acknowledge the gods of their fathers, but their own in especial. This custom they derived from their fathers in Syria; for Terah, Abramís father, and also Abram himself when there, worshiped other gods than Jehovah (n. 1356, 1992, 3667). Their posterity, who were called "Jacob" and "Israel," were consequently of such a disposition that at heart they worshiped the gods of the Gentiles, and Jehovah only with the mouth and in name alone. The reason why they were such was that they were in externals alone without any internal, and such men can believe no otherwise than that worship consists merely in uttering the name of God and in saying that He is their God, and this so long as He is their benefactor; and that worship does not at all consist in a life of charity and faith.

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Author:  E. Swedenborg (1688-1772). Design:  I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002. www.BibleMeanings.info