Spiritual Meaning of GENESIS 7:1
AC 705. The subject here specifically treated of is the "flood," by which is signified not only the temptations which the man of the church called "Noah" had to undergo before he could be regenerated, but also the desolation of those who could not be regenerated. Both temptations and desolations are compared in the Word to "floods" or "inundations" of waters, and are so called. Temptations are denoted in Isaiah:--
For a small moment have I forsaken thee, but in great compassions will I gather thee again. In an inundation of anger I hid my faces from thee for a moment; but in the mercy of eternity will I have compassion upon thee, saith Jehovah thy Redeemer. For this is the waters of Noah unto Me, to whom I have sworn that the waters of Noah should no more go over the earth, so have I sworn that I would not be wroth with thee and rebuke thee, O thou afflicted and tossed with tempests and not comforted (Isaiah 54:7-9, 11).
This is said of the church that is to be regenerated, and concerning its temptations, which are called the "waters of Noah."
 The Lord Himself also calls temptations an "inundation," in Luke:--
Jesus said, Every one that cometh unto Me, and heareth My sayings and doeth them is like unto a man building a house, who digged, and went deep, and laid a foundation upon the rock; and when an inundation came, the stream beat upon that house, but could not shake it, because it had been founded upon the rock (Luke 6:47, 48).
That temptations are here meant by an "inundation" must be evident to every one. Desolations are also denoted in Isaiah:--
The Lord bringeth up upon them the waters of the river, strong and many, the king of Asshur and all his glory; and he riseth up above all his channels, and shall go over all his banks: and he shall go through Judah; he shall inundate and go through; he shall reach even to the neck (Isaiah 8:7, 8).
"The king of Asshur" here stands for phantasies, principles of falsity, and the derivative reasonings, which desolate man, and which desolated the antediluvians.
 In Jeremiah:--
Thus hath said Jehovah, Behold waters rise up out of the north, and shall become an inundating stream, and shall inundate the land and the fullness thereof, the city and them that dwell therein (Jeremiah 47:2, 3).
This is said of the Philistines, who represent those who take up false principles, and reason from them concerning spiritual things, which reasonings inundate man, as they did the antediluvians. The reason why both temptations and desolations are compared in the Word to "floods" or "inundations" of waters, and are so called, is that they are similarly circumstanced; it being evil spirits who flow in with their persuasions and the false principles in which they are, and excite such things in man. With the man who is being regenerated, these are temptations; but with the man who is not being regenerated they are desolations.
AC 706. Verse 1. And Jehovah said unto Noah, Enter thou and all thy house into the ark; for thee have I seen righteous before Me in this generation. "Jehovah said unto Noah," signifies that so it came to pass ("Jehovah" is named because charity is now treated of) "enter thou and all thy house into the ark," signifies the things that are of the will, which is the "house;" to "enter into the ark," here signifies to be prepared; "for thee have I seen righteous in this generation," signifies that he had good whereby he might be regenerated.
AC 707. Here, as far as (verse 5), are found almost the same things that were said in the previous chapter, merely changed in some little measure, and it is the same in the verses that follow. One who is not acquainted with the internal sense of the Word cannot but think that this is merely a repetition of the same thing. Similar instances occur in other parts of the Word, especially in the Prophets, where the same thing is expressed in different words; and sometimes is also taken up again and described a second time. But, as before said, the reason is that there are two faculties in man which are most distinct from each other-the will, and the understanding-and the two are treated of in the Word distinctively. This is the reason of the repetition. That this is the case here will be evident from what follows.
AC 708. Jehovah said unto Noah. That this signifies that so it came to pass, is evident from the consideration that with Jehovah there is nothing else than Being (Esse): that which He says comes to pass and is done; just as in the preceding chapter (Genesis 6:13), and elsewhere, where the expression "Jehovah said" means that it came to pass and was done.
AC 709. The name "Jehovah" is here used because the subject now treated of is charity. In the preceding chapter (Genesis 6:8-22) it is not said "Jehovah," but "God," for the reason that the subject there treated of is the preparation of "Noah" (that is, of the man of the church called "Noah") as to the things of his understanding, which relate to faith; whereas the subject here treated of is his preparation as to the things of the will, which are of love. When the things of the understanding, or the truths of faith, are the subject treated of, the name "God" is used, but when the things of the will, or the goods of love are treated of, the name "Jehovah"’ is used. For the things of the understanding, or of faith, do not constitute the church, but the things of the will, which are of love. Jehovah is in love and charity and not in faith unless it is a faith of love or of charity. And therefore in the Word faith is compared to "night," and love to "day " as in the first chapter of Genesis, where the "great lights" are spoken of, it is said that the "greater light," or the sun, which signifies love, should rule the day, and the "lesser light," or the moon, which signifies faith, should rule the night (Gen. 1:14, 16); and it is the same in the Prophets (Jer. 31:35; 33:20; Ps. 136:8, 9; Rev. 8:12).
AC 710. Enter thou and all thy house into the ark. That this signifies the things that are of the will, is therefore evident. In the preceding chapter, where the things of the understanding are meant, it is expressed differently, namely: "Thou shalt come into the ark, thou and thy sons, and thy wife, and thy sons‘ wives with thee" (verse 18). That a "house" signifies the will and what is of the will, is evident in various places in the Word; as in Jeremiah:--
Their houses shall be turned over unto others, their fields and their wives together (Jeremiah 6:12).
Here "houses" and also "fields" and "wives" relate to things which are of the will. Again:--
Build ye houses and dwell in them; and plant gardens and eat the fruit of them (Jeremiah 29:5, 28).
Here "building houses and dwelling in them" relates to the will; "planting gardens," to the understanding: and it is the same in other passages. And the "house of Jehovah" is frequently mentioned as signifying the church wherein love is the principal; the "house of Judah," as signifying the celestial church; and the "house of Israel," as signifying the spiritual church. As "house" signifies the church, the mind of the man of the church (wherein are the things of the will and of the understanding, or of charity and faith), is also signified by "house."
AC 711. That to "enter into the ark," is to be prepared, has been stated before in the preceding chapter (Genesis 6:18). But there it signified that he was prepared for salvation as to things of the understanding, which are truths of faith; but here as to things of the will, which are goods of charity. Unless a man is prepared, that is, furnished with truths and goods, he can by no means be regenerated, still less undergo temptations. For the evil spirits who are with him at such a time excite his falsities and evils; and if truths and goods are not present, to which they may be bent by the Lord, and by which they may be dispersed, he succumbs. These truths and goods are the remains which are reserved by the Lord for such uses.
AC 712. For thee have I seen righteous in this generation. That this signifies that he had good whereby he might be regenerated, was stated and shown at (Genesis 6:9). In that place "righteous" or "just" signifies the good of charity; and "perfect" the truth of charity. It is there said "generations," in the plural, because things of the understanding are treated of; and here, "generation," in the singular, because things of the will are treated of. For the will comprehends in itself the things of the understanding, but the understanding does not comprehend in itself those of the will. GENESIS 7:1 - next - text - summary - Genesis - Full Page
|Author: E. Swedenborg (1688-1772).||Design: I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002.||www.BibleMeanings.info|