Spiritual Meaning of GENESIS 49:13
AC 6382. Verse 13. Zebulun shall dwell at the haven of the seas, and he shall be at a haven of ships, and his side shall be toward Zidon. "Zebulun" signifies the cohabitation of good and truth; "shall dwell at the haven of the seas," signifies life where there is conclusion of truth from memory-knowledges; "and he shall be at a haven of ships," signifies where are doctrinal things from the Word; "and his side shall be toward Zidon," signifies extension on one side to the knowledges of good and truth.
AC 6383. Zebulun. That this signifies the cohabitation of good and truth, is evident from the representation of Zebulun, as being the heavenly marriage (n. 3960, 3961), thus the conjunction of good and truth, for this conjunction is the heavenly marriage. It is said "the cohabitation of good and truth" because in the original language " Zebulon" means "cohabitation." Here under the name of "Zebulon" are treated of those in’ the church who form conclusions about spiritual truths from memory-knowledges, and thus fortify them with themselves. But be it known that by "Zebulun" are not meant those who do not believe unless memory-knowledges and sensuous things declare for it, and who are until then in what is negative. Such never believe, for the reason that what is negative reigns universally, and when this is the case there flow in and are gathered together memory-knowledges which deny, but not those which confirm; the latter being cast to the sides, or explained to favor the negative memory-knowledges, whereby what is negative is fortified. But by "Zebulun" are here meant those who believe doctrinal things from the Word, thus with whom something affirmative reigns universally; and yet their faith has not its life in truths, but in memory-knowledges, for they apply these to doctrinal things, and thus fortify their affirmative. They who are "Zebulun," therefore, do not elevate themselves from memory-knowledges; but when they hear or think of any truth of faith they at once fall back into memory-knowledge. There are many such in the world, and the Lord provides that memory-knowledges and sensuous things may serve them for this use.
AC 6384. Shall dwell at the haven of the seas. That this signifies life where there is conclusion of truth from memory-knowledges, is evident from the signification of "haven," as being the residence where memory-knowledges terminate and begin; here, the residence where there is conclusion of truth from memory-knowledges, for under the name of "Zebulun" those are here treated of with whom the truths of faith are in this residence; from the signification of "seas," as being memory-knowledges in the complex (n. 28); and from the signification of "dwelling," as being life (n. 1293, 3384, 3613, 4451, 6051). From this it is plain that by "dwelling at the haven of the seas" is signified life where there is conclusion of truth from memory-knowledges. As regards this life see what has been said above (n. 6383). Be it known further that this life is in the external or natural man, and with some in the lowest natural, or in the sensuous, for they have the truths of faith so bound to memory-knowledges that they cannot be elevated. Hence also they are in obscurity more than all others in the spiritual church; for they have but little light from the intellectual, because this has been immersed in memory-knowledges and sensuous things. The case is different with those who have been in what is affirmative, and have fortified the truths of faith by means of memory-knowledges; but yet so that they can be elevated from these knowledges, that is, from the natural where these are. The intellectual of these men has been enlightened, and from this is in a certain perception of spiritual truth, to which the memory-knowledges that are beneath serve as a mirror wherein the truths of faith and of charity appear and are acknowledged, as affections are in the face.
AC 6385. And he shall be at a haven of ships. That this signifies where are doctrinal things from the Word, is evident from the signification of "haven," as being a residence (n. 6384), thus where they are; and from the signification "ships," as being doctrinal things from the Word. That of "ships" have this signification is because they pass through seas and rivers, and carry things useful for life; for by "seas" and "rivers" are signified knowledges and memory-knowledges; the useful things of life which they carry, are the doctrinal things and also the very truths from the Word which are signified by "ships," as is plain from the following passages:--
The isles shall trust in Me, and the ships of Tarshish in the beginning, to bring thy sons from far, their silver and their gold with them (Isa. 60:9);
"ships of Tarshish" denote doctrinal things and truths from the Word, wherefore it is said that they should "bring their sons, their silver and gold;" for by "sons" are signified those who are in truths; by "silver," the truth itself; and by "gold," good. Everyone can see that ships of Tarshish are not here meant, nor sons, silver, and gold.
 In Ezekiel:--
Thy borders are in the heart of the sea, thy architects have perfected thy beauty. They have built all thy planks of fir-trees from Senir; they have taken the cedar from Lebanon to make a mast for thee. Of the oaks of Bashan have they made thine oars; they have made thy beam of ivory; the daughter of a step from the Isles of Kittim. Of fine linen with broidered work from Egypt was thy sail, that it might be to thee for an ensign; blue and crimson from the isles of Elishah was thy covering. The inhabitants of Zidon and Arvad were thy rowers: thy wise men, O Tyre, who were in thee, were thy pilots. The elders of Gebal and the wise men thereof were in thee thy calkers; all the ships of the sea and their sailors were in thee, to trade thy trading (Ezek. 27:4-9);
this is said of Tyre, by which are signified the knowledges of good and truth (n. 1201), which are described by what belongs to a ship, as "planks," "mast," "oars," "beam," "sail," a "covering," "rowers," "pilots," and "sailors." That all these are not to be understood according to the letter must be plain to everyone; but when the knowledges of truth and good, which are "Tyre," together with doctrinal things from the Word, are understood by "ships," then all things fit together beautifully.
 In David:--
O Jehovah, how manifold are Thy works! in wisdom hast Thou made them all. This sea great and wide in spaces; there go the ships; the whale which Thou hast formed to play therein (Ps. 104:24-26).
Let them sacrifice the sacrifices of confession; and declare the works of Jehovah with rejoicing. They that go down to the sea in ships, that do work in many waters, these see the works of Jehovah and His wonders in the deep (Ps. 107:22-24);
here also "ships" denote knowledges and doctrinal things; the "whale" denotes the generals of memory-knowledges (n. 42); and as "ships" are knowledges and doctrinal things, therefore it is said, "they that go down to the sea in ships see the works of Jehovah and His wonders in the deep;" for those see these things who are in the knowledges and doctrinal things from the Word.
 In John:--
The second angel sounded, and as it were a great mountain burning with fire was cast into the sea, and the third part of the sea became blood, whence the third part of the creatures that were in the sea, and had souls, died; and the third part of the ships was destroyed (Rev. 8:8, 9);
the "great mountain burning with fire" denotes the love of self (n. 1691); the "sea," the natural where memory-knowledges are (n. 28); "blood," violence done to charity (n. 374, 1005); "creatures in the sea having souls," truths of memory-knowledge with goods; a "third part," something not yet complete (n. 2788); their "dying," that they had no spiritual life (n. 6119); hence "the third part of the ships being destroyed" denotes that the truths and goods of doctrinal things from the Word were falsified. From all this may be known what is signified by this prophecy.
 But in the opposite sense "ships" signify the knowledges and doctrinal things of what is false and evil, as in Daniel:--
At the time of the end shall the king of the south strive with him; therefore the king of the north shall rush upon him like a whirlwind, with chariot and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall come into the lads, and shall overflow and penetrate (Daniel 11:40);
the "king of the south" denotes truth from good; the "king of the north," falsities from evil; "chariots with horsemen and with ships," doctrinal things of falsity; the "lands," churches, of which it is predicted that falsities from evils in the time of the end should overflow and penetrate them.
 In John:--
Every pilot, and everyone employed upon ships, and sailors, and all they who trade upon the sea, stood afar off, and cried when they saw the smoke of the burning of Babylon, saying, What city is like the great city? Woe, woe, the great city, wherein were made rich all that had ships in the sea by reason of her costliness! (Rev. 18:17-19);
it is evident that "ships" here denote the knowledges and doctrinal things of falsity and evil, because "Babylon" denotes war ship which outwardly appears holy, and inwardly is profane. Moreover no one can fail to see that by "ships" something else than ships is here meant. In Isaiah:--
Thus saith Jehovah your Redeemer, the Holy one of Israel, For your sake I have sent to Babylon, that I may throw down all her bars, and the Chaldeans, whose cry is in the ships (Isa. 43:14);
where the meaning is similar. Moreover falsities from evil are signified by "ships" in (Isa. 2:11, 16; 23:1, 14; Ps. 48:7).
AC 6386. And his side shall be toward Zidon. That this signifies extension on one side to the knowledges of good and truth, is evident from the signification of "side," as being extension on one side; and from the signification of" Zidon," as being exterior knowledges of good and truth (n. 1201). Here, where Zebulun is treated of, mention is made of knowledges, of doctrinal things, and of memory-knowledges, and it is said that there is extension on one side to the knowledges of good and truth, and also that there is conclusion of truth from memory-knowledges where there are doctrinal things from the Word; therefore it is necessary to say what is the distinction between these terms. Doctrinal things are those which are from the Word; knowledges are those which are from doctrinal things on the one side and from memory-knowledges on the other; and memory-knowledges are those which belong to experience, either one‘s own or that of others. GENESIS 49:13 previous - next - text - summary - Genesis - Full Page
|Author: E. Swedenborg (1688-1772).||Design: I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002.||www.BibleMeanings.info|