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Mark Chapter 12



  1. and He began to say to them in parables, A man planted a vineyard, and set a hedge about it, and dug a wine vat, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went from home.

that spiritual truth is communicated from the lord by the Word to man, as a security against evils and falses, and for the procuring of heavenly good, and for elevation to interior intelligence, whilst the lord Himself appears absent. (Verse 1.)

  1. And at the season He sent to the husbandmen a servant, that he might receive from the husbandmen of the fruit of the vineyard.

For the lord is continually intent on producing in man's mind the good of love and charity, and on instructing man by His Word that this good ought to be acknowledged as a Divine gift, and thus returned to Himself, the giver. (Verse 2.)

  1. But they, having taken him, beat him, and sent him away empty.
  2. And again He sent to them another servant, and having cast stones at him, they wounded him in the head, and sent him away dishonoured.
  3. And again he sent another; and him they killed, and many others; beating some, and killing some.

But they who are in the science of truth without its life, either pervert, or reject, or falsify the truth. (Verses 3, 4, 5.)

  1. Having yet therefore one Son, His well-beloved, He sent Him also last to them, saying, They will reverence My Son.
  2. But those husbandmen said among themselves, This is the Heir; come, let us kill Him, and the inheritance will be ours.
  3. And having taken Him, they killed Him, and cast Him out of the vineyard.

Insomuch that they reject the Divine Truth itself, or the Word, when manifested in the flesh, and thus appropriate all good and truth to themselves, instead of ascribing them to their Divine Source. (Verses 6, 7, 8.)

  1. What then shall the Lord of the vineyard do? He will come and destroy the husbandmen, and will give the vineyard to others.

Therefore they perish in the day of judgement, being deprived of all knowledge of the truth, which is transferred to those who are principled in good. (Verse 9.)

  1. Have you not read this Scripture; The stone which the builders rejected is become the head of the corner?
  2. This was the Lord's doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes.

Thus fulfilling the prediction which teaches that the lord's Humanity, which is Divine Truth, should, by such rejection, be exalted to union with the Divinity through its own proper power, and should thus become the supreme object of worship and adoration. (Verses 10, 11.)

  1. And they sought to lay hold of Him, and feared the multitude: for they knew that He had spoken the parable against them: and having left Him, they departed.

They therefore, who pervert and falsify the truth, reject this object, and seek to destroy it, but are withheld by external bonds. (Verse 12.)

  1. And they send to Him some of the Pharisees and of the Herodians, to catch Him in [His] word.
  2. But when they came, they say to Him, Teacher, we know that You are True, and carest for no one: for Thou lookest not at the person [face] of men, but teach the way of God in Truth: Is it lawful to give tribute to Caesar, or not?

That they who are in hypocritical worship treat the Word with outward respect, and consult it for the regulation of the external man as to things of moral and civil life. (Verses 13, 14, and part of 15.)

  1. Shall we give, or shall we not give? But He, knowing their hypocrisy, said to them, Why tempt you Me? Bring Me a penny, that I may see it.

But this they do without any regard to the regulation of the internal man. (Verse 15, latter part.)

  1. And they brought it. And He says to them, Whose is this image and superscription? And they said to Him, Caesar's.
  2. And Jesus answering, said to them, Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's. And they marvelled at Him.

Whereas the Word teaches by significatives that the external man bears the image of the world for which it was created, and therefore ought to be regulated by and submit to the laws of moral and civil life; but that the internal man bears the image of heaven for which it was created, and therefore ought to be regulated by and submit to the laws of heavenly or spiritual life. (Verses 16, 17.)

  1. And the Sadducees come to Him, who say that there is no resurrection; and they asked Him, saying,
  2. Teacher, Moses wrote unto us, That if the brother of anyone die, and leave a wife, and leave no children, his brother should take his wife, and raise up seed to his brother.
  3. Now there were seven brethren: and the first took the woman, and dying left no seed.
  4. And the second took her, and died, neither left he any seed: and in like manner the third.
  5. And the seven took her, and left no seed: last of all the woman died also.
  6. In the resurrection therefore, when they shall have risen, whose wife shall she be of them? for the seven had her to wife.

That they also who deny the Scripture doctrine of regeneration consult the Word respecting the heavenly marriage of good and truth. (Verses 18—24.)

  1. And Jesus answering, said to them, Do you not therefore err, not having known the Scriptures, nor the power of God?

But being perplexed about it, they are instructed that their perplexity is the effect of their ignorance, in consequence of not admitting into their minds and lives the Divine Truth and Good of the Word by regeneration. (Verse 24.)

  1. For when they shall have risen from the dead, they neither marry, nor are given in marriage; but are as the angels who are in the heavens.

Which heavenly principles must be admitted during man's abode in this world, otherwise they cannot be admitted after death; and which, if admitted, form angelic life. (Verse 25.)

  1. But respecting the dead, that they are [already] risen, Have you not read in the Book of Moses, how in the bush God said to him, saying, I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob?
  2. He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living: you therefore do greatly err.

Therefore the Word teaches that all celestial, spiritual, and natural good and truth are from the lord, and that none can attain such good and truth but in the degree in which they renounce self-love, and cherish heavenly love. (Verses 26, 27.)

  1. And one of the Scribes came, and having heard them questioning together, seeing that He had answered them well, asked Him, Which is the first commandment of all?
  2. And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord:
  3. And you shall love the Lord your God from your whole heart, and from your whole soul, and from your whole thought, and from your whole strength: this is the first commandment.

The Word further teaches that the lord, in His Divine Humanity, is Divine Love and Divine Wisdom United, and is thus the Only god; and that He ought to be loved by man with the whole of his will, and of his understanding, also with those things which are of the will and of the understanding in the external man. (Verses 28—30.)

  1. And the second is like it, namely this, You shall love your neighbour as yourself. There is none other commandment greater than these.

In like manner man ought to love the good and truth which are from the lord in others as in himself. (Verse 31.)

  1. And the Scribe said to Him, Well, Teacher, Thou have said the truth: for there is One God; and there is none other but He:
  2. And to love Him from the whole heart, and from the whole understanding, and from the whole soul, and from the whole strength, and to love [his] neighbour as himself, is more than all whole burnt-offerings and sacrifices.
  3. And Jesus seeing him, that he answered discreetly, said to him, You are not far from the kingdom of God. And no one dared question Him any longer.

Which doctrine is assented to even by those who are of the perverted church, and who, on that account, are pronounced by the lord to be in the way of advancement towards heaven. (Verses 32—34.)

  1. And Jesus answering said, teaching in the temple, How say the Scribes that Christ is the Son of David?
  2. For David himself said in the Holy Spirit, The Lord said to my Lord, Sit You on My right hand, till I make Yours enemies Your footstool.
  3. David therefore him self calls Him Lord; and whence is He his Son? And the numerous multitude heard Him gladly.

The Word further teaches that man ought to consider well the quality of the lord's Humanity, so as to discern clearly, that although before glorification it was the Son of Mary and of David, yet after glorification it ceased to be so, being then one with the Eternal father, and thus having Omnipotence and Omniscience. (Verses 35—37.)

  1. And He said to them in His doctrine, Beware of the Scribes, who desire to go in long clothing, and [desire] salutations in the market places,
  2. And the chief seats in synagogues, and the upper most couches at feasts:
  3. Who devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayers: these shall receive greater damnation.

Caution also is necessary respecting those in the perverted church, who seek preeminence in the communication of good and of truth, and to be thought better and wiser than others, whilst under a pretence of piety they deprive those of truth who are in the desire of truth, and thus increase their own condemnation. (Verses 38—40.)

  1. And Jesus sat over against the treasury, and saw how the multitude cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much.
  2. And there came one poor widow, and cast in two mites, which make a farthing.

For the lord, from His Divine Love, perceives the quality of everyone's worship, as proceeding either from the knowledges of truth in the understanding, or from the desire of truth in the will. (Verses 41, 42.)

  1. And having called His disciples, He says to them, Verily I say to you, That this poor widow has cast more in, than all they who have cast into the treasury:
  2. For they all did cast in of their abundance; but she of her penury did cast in all that she had, even her whole living.

But the worship proceeding from the latter source is more acceptable to Him than the worship proceeding from the former source. (Verses 43, 44.)


Chapter XII.

verses 1—9. And He began to say to them in parables, A man planted a vineyard, and set a hedge about it, and dug a wine-vat, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went from home, &c.—What was the quality of the Jewish nation, is very manifest from several things, which the Lord Himself spoke in parables, and which, in the internal, historical sense relate to that nation; as what is said in the parable concerning a king, who called his servant to account, in whom there was nothing of mercy towards another; (Matt 18:23, to the end.) in the parable too concerning the householder, who let out a vineyard to husbandmen and went abroad, and the husbandmen laid hold of the servants whom he sent, and beat them with rods, killed, and stoned them; at length he sent his son, whom they cast out of the vineyard, and slew him; on hearing which parable, the Scribes and Pharisees knew that it related to themselves. (Matt 21:33-45; Mark 12:1-9; Luke 20:9, and following verses.) And in the parable concerning the man who gave talents to his servants, and how he, who received one talent, went and hid it in the earth; (Matt 25:14-30; Luke 19:13-26.) and in the parable concerning those who came to the man wounded by thieves; (Luke 10:30-37.) and in the parable concerning those who were invited to a great supper, and they all excused themselves, of whom the Lord declared,—"I say to you, That none of those men who were called shall taste of my supper;" (Luke 14:16-24.) and in the parable concerning the rich man and Lazarus; (Luke 16:19, to the end.) and in the parable concerning those who despise others in comparison with themselves; (Luke 18:10-14.) and in the parable concerning two sons, one of whom said,—" I will go into the vineyard," but did not go; and Jesus said,—"Verily I say to you, That the publicans and harlots shall enter into the kingdom of the heavens before you." (Matt 21:28-32.) From these considerations it may be manifest that goods and truths were altogether destroyed with that nation. AC 4314.

In the Word, churches are everywhere described by gardens, also by the trees of a garden, and they are likewise so named, and this from the "fruits," which signify those things which are of love and charity; wherefore it is said that "man is known from the fruit." The comparison of churches with gardens, trees, and fruits, originates in representations in heaven, where also gardens of inexpressible beauty are occasionally presented to view, according to spheres of faith; hence likewise the celestial church was described by the garden of paradise, in which were trees of every kind; and by the "trees of the garden" were signified the perceptions of that church; and by the "fruits," goods of every kind, which are of love. But the ancient church, as being spiritual, is described by a vineyard, which description is grounded in the "fruits," which are grapes, representing and signifying works of charity, which is manifest from several passages from the Word, as in Isaiah,—" I will sing to my Beloved a song of my Beloved, touching His vineyard. My Beloved had a vineyard in the horn of a son of oil: and He hedged it round about, and encompassed it with stones, and planted it with a noble vine, and built a tower in the midst of it, and also cut out a wine-press in it: and waited that it should bring forth grapes, and it brought forth wild grapes. And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem, and men of Judah, judge, I pray, between Me and My vineyard. The vineyard of Jehovah of Hosts is the house of Israel." (Is 5:1, 2, 3, 7.) In this passage a "vineyard" signifies the ancient church, thus the spiritual church, and it is plainly said that it is the "house of Israel;" for by "Israel," in the Word, is spiritually signified the spiritual church; but by "Judah," the celestial church. So in Jeremiah,—" Again I will build you, and you shall be built, O virgin of Israel! you shall again be adorned with your tabrets, and shall go forth into the dances of them that sport; again you shall plant vineyards in the mountains of Samaria;" (Jer 31:4, 5.) where "vineyard" denotes the spiritual church, and the subject treated of is "Israel," by whom, as was said, is signified the spiritual church. And in Ezekiel,— "When 1 shall gather together the house of Israel from amongst the people, they shall dwell on the land in confidence, and shall build houses and plant vineyards;" (Ez. xxviii. 25, 26.) where "vineyard" denotes the spiritual church, or Israel; to "plant vineyards" denotes to be instructed in the truths and goods of faith. And as "vineyard" signifies the spiritual church, so also does a "vine," for a vine is of a vineyard; the case being like that of a church and a man of the church, wherefore it is the same thing; as in Ezekiel,— "Take up a lamentation over the princes of Israel; your mother was as a vine in your likeness, planted near the waters, bearing fruit, and bearing leaves from many waters;" (Ez 19:1, 10.) where "vine" denotes the ancient spiritual church, which was a mother, thus it denotes Israel; wherefore also it is said, "in your likeness." The parables of the Lord concerning "labourers in vineyards," in like manner, signified spiritual churches. (Matt 20:1-16; Mark 12:1-12; Luke 20:9-18; Matt 21:33-44.) Inasmuch as a "vine" signifies the spiritual church, and the primary principle of that church is charity, in which the Lord is present, and by which He conjoins Himself to man, and by which He operates all good, therefore the Lord compares Himself to a vine, and describes the man of the church, or the spiritual church, in these words in John,— "I am the true vine, and My Father is the vine-dresser; every branch in Me that bears not fruit, He takes away; but every one that bears fruit, He purges it, that it may bring forth more fruit. Abide in Me, and I in you; as the branch cannot bear fruit from itself, unless it abide in the vine, so neither can you, unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches; he that abides in Me, and I in him, the same brings forth much fruit: for without Me you cannot do any thing. This is My commandment, That you love one another, as I have loved you." (John 15:1-5, 12.) Hence it is manifest what the spiritual church is. AC 1069.

By the "vineyard" which the householder planted, is signified the church established amongst the sons of Israel; by the "hedge" which he set about it, is signified a guard from the false principles of evils which are from hell; by his "digging a wine-press in it," is signified that it had spiritual good; and by "building a tower," are signified interior truths from that good, which looked to heaven; by "letting it out to husbandmen," is signified to that people; by "their killing the servants sent to them," are signified the prophets; and by their finally "killing the Son," is signified the Lord. AE 922.

By a "wine-press" is signified exploration, the reason of which signification is, because in wine-presses the new wine is pressed out from the clusters of grapes, and the oil from the olives, and by the new wine and oil pressed out it is perceived what was the quality of the grapes and olives; and whereas by a "vineyard" is signified the Christian church, and by its "clusters of grapes" are signified works, therefore the exploration of these amongst the men of the Christian church is signified by casting into a "wine-press." This exploration of works is also signified by a "wine-press" in the following passages:— "My Beloved had a vineyard in the horn of a son of oil: He planted it with a noble vine, also He cut out a wine-press in it." (Isaiah 5:1, 2.) "Put you in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe: get you down, for the wine-press is full, the vats overflow; for their wickedness is great." (Joel 3:13.) "The floor and the wine-press shall not feed them, and the new wine shall deceive them." (Hosea 9:1, 2.) The "wine-press" is also applied to the goods of charity, from which are the truths of faith, in these words in Joel,—" Rejoice, you daughters of Zion; the floors are full of corn, and the wine-presses overflow with new wine and oil." (Joel ii. 23, 24.) AR 651.

Cities in old times were fortified with towers, in which were guards; towers were also in the boundaries, and were therefore called "guard towers," (2 Kings 9:17; 17:9; 18:8.) and "watch towers." (Isaiah 23:13.) Moreover also, when the church of the Lord is compared to a vineyard, the things which regard worship, and also its preservation, are compared to a wine-press, and to a tower in the vineyard, as is manifest in Isaiah 5:1, 2; Matt 21:33; Mark 12:1. AC 1306.

Verses 2—9. And at the season He sent to the husbandmen a servant, that He might receive from the husbandmen of the fruits of the vineyard. But they, having taken him, beat him, and sent him away empty, &c.—These words were spoken concerning the church established amongst the Jews, and by them is described the perversion and falsification of every truth, derived to them from the Word by traditions and applications to themselves; every single expression contains a spiritual sense, for whatever the Lord spoke, He spoke also spiritually, because from the Divinity. By the "vineyard which the man planted," is signified the church which is principled in truths; by the "servant whom He sent three times," is meant the Word given them by Moses and the prophets. It is said three times, because "three" signifies what is full and complete. By the "husbandmen smiting them, wounding, and sending them empty out of the vineyard," is signified that they falsified and perverted the truths contained in the Word. To "send away empty out of the vineyard," signifies that they deprived the Word of its goods and truths; by the "beloved Son" is meant the Lord, as to Divine Truth, who hence is also called the Word; by "casting Him out of the vineyard, and slaying Him," is signified, not only that they so dealt with Himself, but also with every divine truth which is from Him. AE 315.

Verse 7. But those husbandmen said among themselves, This is the Heir; come, let us kill Him, and the inheritance will be ours.—That to "inherit," in the internal sense, when it is predicated of the Lord, is to have the life of the Father, thus in Himself; and when it is predicated of men, that it is to have the life of the Lord, that is, to receive life from the Lord, is manifest from several passages of the Word; to have life in Himself is the very esse of life, that is, Jehovah; but to have the life of the Lord, or to receive life from the Lord, is to receive the Lord by love and faith; and since they who so receive are in the Lord, and are the Lord's, they are called His heirs and sons. In the Word of the Old Testament, inheritance is predicated both of what is celestial or good, and of what is spiritual or true, but still it is expressed by different terms; in the former case by possessing hereditarily, but in the latter case by inheriting; the former expression also in the original tongue involves possession, but the latter derivation thence, as is the case with what is celestial in regard to what is spiritual, or as what is good in regard to what is true; in this verse, where by Isaac is represented the rational principle or Divine Human principle of the Lord, it is an expression of possession grounded in hereditary right, because the Divine Human principle of the Lord is the only possessing heir, as He Himself likewise teaches in the parable; (Matt. xxi. 33, 37, 38; Mark 12:7; Luke 20:14.) and everywhere declares, that all things of the Father are His; that to "possess hereditarily" and to "inherit," when predicated of men in the Word, signifies to receive life from the Lord, consequently eternal life or heaven (for they alone receive heaven who receive the Lord's life), is manifest from the Revelations,—" He that overcometh shall inherit all things, and I will be to him a God, and he shall be to Me a son; (Rev 21:7.) and in Matthew,—" Every one who has left houses, or brethren, or sisters, for My name's sake, shall receive a hundred-fold, and shall inherit eternal life." (Matt 19:29; 25:34; Mark 10:17; Luke 18:18.) Heaven is here called "eternal life," in other places simply "life," as Matt 18:8, 9; 19:17; John 3:36; 5:24, 29; by reason that the Lord is life itself, and he who receives His life is in heaven. AC 2658.

Verse 9. And will give the vineyard to others.—Those who are within the church, and who have confirmed themselves against divine Truths, especially against these Truths,—that the Humanity of the Lord is divine, and that the works of charity contribute nothing to salvation; if they have confirmed themselves against these Truths, not only in doctrine but in life, they have reduced themselves, as to their interiors, to such a state, that they cannot afterwards be led to receive them. For the things which have been once confirmed, both in doctrine and in life, remain to eternity. Those who do not know the interior state of man, may think that every one, however he may have confirmed himself against these Truths, may nevertheless easily receive them, if [after death] he is only convinced that they are Truths. But that this is impossible, has been given me to know by much experience, from such spirits in the other life. For that which is confirmed by doctrine imbues the intellectual faculty, and that which is confirmed in life imbues the will faculty; that which is enrooted in each life of man, that is, both in the life of his understanding and in the life of his will, cannot be rooted out. The very soul of man, which lives after death, being formed by these things, and is such as in nowise to recede therefrom. This also is the reason why the lot of those who are within the church, with whom this is the case, is worse than the lot of those who are out of the church. For those who are out of the church, and are called Gentiles, have not confirmed themselves against those Truths, because they have not known them; wherefore those of them who have lived in mutual charity easily receive divine Truths, if not in the world, nevertheless in the other life, as may be seen from the state of the Gentiles and peoples, and from their lot in the other life, as described from experience, see AC 2589—2604. Hence it is, that when a new church is being established by the Lord, it is not established amongst those who are within the church, but amongst those who are without, that is, amongst the Gentiles; [this is meant by "giving the vineyard to others." Mark 12:9.] AC 4747.

Verse 15. But He, knowing their hypocrisy, &c.—To will evil, and yet to speak what is true and good, is from hypocrisy, using truth and good as means; and when these means are withdrawn in the other life, the man rushes into all the evils of his will, and defends them by his understanding. AC 10122.

Evils effected by deceit are the worst of all, for deceit is like a poison which infects the whole mind, penetrating even to its interiors, and destroying all that is human. Hence "poison," in the Word, denotes deceit or hypocrisy; and "venomous serpents" denote the deceitful or hypocrites. AC 9013.

Verse 18. And the Sadducees come to Him, who say that there is no resurrection [or life after death], &c.—By "Canaan being cursed," in Gen 9:25, and also by "Canaan" in Gen 10:15, is signified external worship, in which there is nothing internal. This worship is such as pertained to the Jews before the Lord's advent, and also since, as at the present day. For the Jews had an external worship which they strictly observed, but still they knew nothing of an internal principle, and were so utterly ignorant that they thought that they lived only as to the body. What the soul is, what faith is, what the Lord is, what spiritual and celestial life is, what the life after death is, they were entirely ignorant; wherefore also at the time the Lord was in the world, many denied the resurrection, as is evident from Matt 22:23-33; Mark 12:18-28; Luke 20:27-38. When a man is of such a quality that he does not believe that he shall live after death, he also does not believe that there is anything of an internal which is spiritual and celestial; such persons also are of this nature, who live in mere cupidities, because they live the mere life of the body and of the world, especially such as are immersed in filthy avarice. They nevertheless have a worship, for they frequent synagogues and temples, and observe the rites, and some of them indeed do this very strictly; but because they do not believe in a life after death, their worship can be nothing else than external, in which there is nothing internal, like a shell without a kernel, or like a tree on which there is no fruit, and not even leaves. AC 1200.

Verses 18—28. On the Resurrection, and on Marriages in heaven.—There are two things which the Lord taught on this occasion,—-first, that man rises again after death; and secondly, that they are not given in marriage in heaven. That man rises again after death, is taught by these words, that "God is not the God of the dead, but of the living;" secondly, that they are not given in marriage in heaven, by these words,—"In the resurrection, they neither marry, nor are given in marriage." That no other marriages are here meant but spiritual marriages, is manifest from the words which immediately follow,—"They are as the angels of God in heaven." By "spiritual marriage," conjunction with the Lord is meant, and this is effected on the earth, and when it is effected on the earth, it is also effected in the heavens; wherefore in the heavens marriage [or this spiritual conjunction with the Lord, which is salvation], is not again effected, neither are they given in marriage. This is also meant by these words in Luke,—" The sons of this age marry and are given in marriage, but they who are accounted worthy to attain the other age, neither marry, nor are given in marriage;" the latter also are called by the Lord "sons of the marriage;" (Matt 9:15; Mark 2:19.) and sometimes "angels," "sons of God," and "sons of the resurrection." That to "marry" denotes to be conjoined to the Lord, and that to "enter into the marriage" denotes to be received into heaven by the Lord, is evident from the following passages:— "The kingdom of the heavens is like a man, a king, who made a marriage for his son, and sent forth servants, and invited to the marriage." (Matt 22:1 -14.) "The kingdom of the heavens is like ten virgins, who went forth to meet the bridegroom, of whom five, being prepared, entered into the marriage." (Matt 25:1, and following verses.) That the Lord here meant Himself, is evident from verse 13 of the same chapter, where it is said,—" Watch, because you know not the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is about to come;" also from the Revelations,—"The time of the marriage of the Lamb is come, and His wife has prepared herself. Blessed are they who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb." (Rev 19:7, 9.) CL 41.

Marriages [or the union of one male with one female angel] are given in the heavens as on the earth, but to no others there, except to those who are regenerated, or who are in the marriage of Good and Truth, neither are any others angels; wherefore spiritual marriages, which are those of Good and Truth, are meant by the Lord, when He says,—" In the resurrection, they neither marry nor are given in marriage."

These spiritual marriages are effected on the earth, and not after man's decease, thus not in the heavens; as it is said of the foolish virgins, who were even invited to the marriage, that "they could not enter," because they had not the marriage of Good and Truth, for they had no oil, but only lamps. By "oil" is meant good, and by "lamps," truth; and to be "given in marriage," is to enter into heaven, where is the marriage of Good and Truth. CL 44.

It is said in Scripture that "there shall be no marriages in heaven," in the same manner as it is said,— 1. That "you shall not call any man father upon earth, nor any one teacher, or master." 2. That "it is as difficult for a rich man to enter into heaven, as it is for a camel to go through the eye of a needle." 3. That "friends are to be made of the unrighteous mammon." 4. That "when one cheek is smitten, the other cheek is to be turned to the smiter;" that "the coat also is to be surrendered to him who would take the cloak;" and that "we are to go two miles with him who would compel us to go one." 5. That the adulteress was liberated by "writing on the ground." 6. That "the eye is to be plucked out."— (From Swedenborg's MSS found at the end of the Index to the Scripture passages in Apocalypse Explained.)

Verse 26. I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.—That hereby is signified the Divine [principle] Itself, and the Divine Human, is manifest from the representation of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, as denoting the Divine [principle] Itself, and the Divine Human of the Lord. That Abraham represents the Lord as to the Divine [principle] Itself, Isaac as to the Divine rational, and Jacob as to the Divine natural, see AC 1893, 2011, 2066, 2072, 2089, 2245, 2251, 2630, 3144, 3210, 3305, 3439, 3704, 4180, 4286, 4536, 4570, 4615, 6098, 6185, 6276, 6424, 6804. By "God" is signified the Divine Being; and by their "names" what is representative. Hence those things in the Lord are what are meant by "the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob." AC 6847.

Verse 27. He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living,— It is manifest from these words that heaven and hell are from the human race; and the church might have known this, if she had admitted illustration from heaven, and attended to these words of the Lord, and what was said to the thief on the cross,—" Today shall you be with Me in paradise;" (Luke 23:43.) and to what was also said concerning the rich man and Lazarus, that "the former went into hell, and thence discoursed with Abraham; and that the latter went into heaven." (Luke 16:19-31.) L.J. 19.

As to the resurrection, or life after death, man is so created that, as to his internal, he cannot die; for he is capable of believing in and of loving God, and thus of being conjoined to God by faith and love; and to be thus conjoined to God is to live to eternity.

This internal exists in every man who is born; his external is that by which he brings into effect the things which belong to his faith and love. The internal of man is the spirit, and the external is the body. The external, or the body, is suited to the performance of uses in the natural world, and is rejected or put off at death; but the internal, which is called the spirit, and which is suited to the performance of uses in the spiritual world, never dies. After death, this internal exists as a good spirit and an angel, if the man had been good during his abode in the world, but if during that time he had lived in evil, he is, after death, an evil spirit.

The spirit of man, after the dissolution of the body, appears in the spiritual world in a human form, in every respect as in the natural world. He enjoys the faculty of sight, of hearing, of speaking, and of feeling, as he did in the world; and he is endowed with every faculty of thought, of will, and of action, as when he was in the world; in a word, he is a man in all respects, even to the most minute particular, except that he is not encompassed with the gross body which he had in the world. This he leaves when he dies, nor does he ever resume it.

This continuation of life is meant by the resurrection. The reason why men believe that they shall not rise again before the Last Judgement, when, as they suppose, the whole visible creation will be destroyed, is, because they do not understand the Word, and because sensual men place all their life in the body, and imagine that unless the body be re-animated, the man can be no more.

The life of man after death is the life of his love and of his faith; hence the nature of his life to eternity is determined by the quality which had belonged to these during his life in the world. With those who loved themselves and the world supremely, this life is the life of hell; and with those who had loved God supremely, and the neighbour as themselves, it is the life of heaven. The latter are they who have faith; but the former are they who have no faith. The life of heaven is called eternal life, and the life of hell is called spiritual death.

That man continues to live after the death of the body is plainly taught in the Word; as when it is said, that "God is not the God of the dead, but of the living;" (Matt. xxii. 32.) that Lazarus after death was "carried into heaven," and that the rich man "lifted up his eyes in hell;" (Luke xvi. 22, 23, and the following verses.) that "Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob," are in heaven; (Matt 8:11; 22:31, 32; Luke 20:37, 38.) and when Jesus said to the thief on the cross,—" Today shall you be with Me in paradise." (Luke 23:43.) NJHD 223—228.

Verse 30. And you shall love the Lord your God from your whole heart, and from your whole soul, and from your whole thought, and from your whole strength: this is the first commandment.—By "loving Jehovah God, with the whole heart and the whole soul," is meant with all the will and all the understanding, likewise with all the love and all the faith; for "heart" signifies the love and the will, and "soul" signifies the faith and understanding. The reason why "heart" signifies those two principles, namely, the love and the will, is, because man's love is of his will; and the reason why "soul" signifies also two principles, namely, faith and understanding, is, because faith is of the understanding. The reason why "heart" and "soul" have such signification, is, because the heart of man corresponds to the good of love which is of his will, and the soul [anima, or breath] of the lungs corresponds to the truth of faith, which is of the understanding. AE 750.

By "heart" is meant the life of love, and by "soul" the life of faith, and by "thought" those things which proceed from the life of faith, thus which proceed from the soul, or from the understanding enlightened. That these things are signified in the Word by "heart" and "soul" is known to few at this day within the church, by reason that it has not been considered that man has two faculties, distinct from each other, namely, a will and an understanding, and that those two faculties must constitute one mind, that man may be truly a man. Neither has it been considered that all things in the universe, both in heaven and in the world, have reference to Good and Truth, and that these principles must be joined together before they can be anything and produce anything; in consequence of ignorance on these subjects, man has separated faith from love, for he who is ignorant of those universal laws, cannot know that faith has reference to truth, and love to good, and that unless they be joined together they are not anything, since faith without love is not faith, and love without faith is not love, for love has its quality from faith, and faith its life from love; hence faith without love is dead, mid i'nitli with love is alive. AC 9050.

It is said that "God should be loved from the whole heart, from the whole soul, and from all the strength," by which words is signified, that He should be loved from all things belonging to man. "From the heart," denotes from the will where the good of love is; "from the soul," denotes from the understanding where the truth of faith is, thus it denotes from faith; which two principles are of the internal man; "from all the strength," denotes from those things which are of the understanding and of the will in the external man. AC 9936.

That love to the Lord and love towards the neighbour comprehend in them all divine Truths, may be manifest from what the Lord spoke concerning those two loves, saying,—" You shall love the Lord your God from your whole heart, and from your whole soul, and from your whole thought. This is the first and great commandment. But the second is like it, You shall love your neighbour as yourself. On these two commandments hang the whole law and the prophets." (Matt 22:37-41.) The "law and the prophets" are the whole Word, thus every divine Truth. HH 19.

In the beginning, when any church is established, the Word is at first closed to them, but afterwards it is unclosed, the Lord so providing, and hence it is learnt that all doctrine is founded on these two precepts, that the Lord is to be loved above all things, and a man's neighbour as himself. When these two precepts are regarded as an end, then the Word is unclosed, for "all the law and all the prophets," that is, the whole Word, depend upon them; insomuch that all things are thence derived, and all things have reference to them; and whereas in such case the members of the church are in the principle of Truth and Good, they are enlightened in singular things which they see in the Word, for the Lord is then present with them by the angels and teaches them, although they are ignorant of it, and also leads them into the life of Truth and Good. AC 3773.

It is said by the Lord in the Old Testament, and confirmed in the New, that "all the law and all the prophets are founded in love to God, and in love towards the neighbour," thus in the very life, but not in faith without life, therefore in nowise in faith alone, consequently neither in confidence, for this cannot exist without charity towards the neighbour. AC 5826.

That all things of heaven and of the church are from the good of love, and that the good of love is from the Lord, cannot be seen, and hence cannot be known, unless it be demonstrated. The reason why it is not known because it is not seen, is, because good does not enter the thought of man like truth, for truth is seen in the thought, because it is from the light of heaven, whereas good is only felt because it is from the heat of heaven, and it rarely happens that any one, whilst he reflects on those things which he thinks, attends to those which he feels. This is the reason why the learned have attributed all things to thought, and not to affection, and why the church has attributed all things to faith and not to love, when yet the truth, which at this day in the church is said to be of faith, or is called faith, is only the form of good which is of love. Now, whereas man does not see good in his thought, for good, as was said, is only felt, and is felt under various species of delight, and whereas man does not attend to those things which he feels in thought, but which he sees there, therefore he calls all that good which he feels from delight, and from delight he feels evil, because this is in-born from nativity, and proceeds from the love of self and of the world; this is the reason why it is unknown that the good of love is the all of heaven and of the church, and that this good is not in man, but from the Lord, and that it does not flow in from the Lord with any others but those who shun evils with their delights as sins. This is what is meant by the Lord's words,—" The law and the prophets hang on these two commandments, You shall love God above all things, and your Neighbour as yourself." And I can assert that there is not a grain of truth given, which in itself is truth, with man, only so far as it is from the good of love from the Lord; and hence not a grain of faith, which in itself is faith, that is, living, saving, and spiritual faith, unless so far as it is grounded in charity, which is from the Lord. AR 908.

When love to the Lord becomes the ruling love, it is present in singular the things of man's life; as he who loves his king, or his parents, manifests this love in their presence by its shining forth from singular the parts of his face, by its being heard in singular the things of his speech, and by its appearing in singular the things of his gesture. This is meant by "having God continually before the eyes," and by "loving Him above all things, with the whole soul and with the whole heart." AC 8857.

Verse 32. There is One God, and there is none other but He.—God is one both in Person and in Essence, in whom there is a Trinity, and that God is the Lord Jesus Christ. Upon a just idea of God, the whole heaven and the whole church, and all things of religion are founded, because thereby conjunction is effected with God, and by conjunction heaven and eternal life. AR 42. See also Preface to that work, and AR 469.

The Scriptures throughout teach that God is One. There is a universal influx into the souls of men to the effect that there is a God, and that He is one. Human reason may perceive, if it will, that there is a God, and that He is one; for the existence and unity of God are evident from the phenomena of the universe. God is Substance itself and Form itself; He is Esse itself and Existere itself. He is infinite, because He is and exists in Himself, and all things in the universe are and exist from Him. He is Love itself and Wisdom itself, consequently He is Good itself and Truth itself; thus He is the verimost Life, which is Life in itself. He is Omnipotent, Omniscient, and Omnipresent by the Wisdom of His Love. His power and will are one, and since He wills nothing but what is good, therefore He can do nothing but what is good. He is in His Omnipotence in the order of the universe, according to which He acts. He sees, perceives, and knows all things that are done according to order, and by that means also whatever is done contrary to order. He is Omnipresent from first to last in His own order. The one God descended and was made Man, for the purpose of effecting redemption. Being in inmost or in purest principles, He could not by any other means descend to ultimates, or to lowest principles. Although He descended as the Word, or as the Divine Truth, He did not separate the Divine Good. He is never angry with any one; He never avenges, tempts, punishes, casts into hell, or condemns; such things are as far from God as hell is from heaven, and infinitely further. Every one has a place in heaven according to his idea of God. This idea, like a touchstone, by which gold and silver are tried, is the true test for examining the quality of what is good and true in a man. The Humanity of the Lord is Divine, and consequently in Him God is Man and Man is God. He is the same from eternity to eternity, though His identity is not simple identity, but infinite; and all variation is from the subject in which He abides. Unless God be approached in thought as a Man, [that is, as a Divine Man, such as He manifested Himself when transfigured, Matt. xvii.] all idea of God is lost, and becomes like bodily vision when directed to the wide universe, so that it either fixes itself on an empty nothing or on nature. TCR see Index, under the term God.

The thought only of God as a man, in whom is the divine Trinity of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, opens heaven, - but on the contrary, the thought concerning God as being not a man (which appears in the spiritual world as a little cloud, or as nature in its least principles), shuts heaven. For God is a man [Homo], even as the universal angelic heaven in its aggregate is a Man [homo], and every angel and spirit is thence a man. AE 1097.

Verse 33. To love God with the whole heart, &c., and his neighbour as himself.—To "love the Lord," is to live according to His precepts, as He Himself teaches in John,— "If you love Me, keep My commandments." AC 10829.

It is in the power of every one to see that no kind of life exists without love, and that there is no kind of joy but what flows from love: such however as the love is, such is the life and such is the joy. If you remove loves, or, what is the same thing, desires which have relation to love, thought would instantly cease, and you would become like a dead person, of which 1 have often been convinced by lively experience. Self-love and the love of the world have in them some resemblance of life, and some resemblance of joy, but inasmuch as they are altogether contrary to true love, which consists in a man loving the Lord above all things, and his neighbour as himself, it must be evident that they are not loves but hatreds; for in proportion as any one loves himself and the world, in the same proportion he hates his neighbour, and thereby the Lord; wherefore true love is love towards the Lord; and true life is the life of love from Him; and true joy is the joy of that life. There cannot exist more than one single true love, nor more than one single true life, whence flow true joys and true happinesses, such as are enjoyed by the angels in the heavens. AE 33.

So far as man recedes from self-love and the lusts thereof, so far he receives from the Lord celestial love, that is, mutual love, which consists in a desire to serve all others; these are understood by the least who become the greatest in the kingdom of God. (Matt 20:26-28.) Hence it may appear that what principally disjoins the external man from the internal, is self-love; and that mutual love is what principally tends to unite them, which mutual love cannot exist before self-love recedes, for they are altogether contrary to each other. The Lord gives to angels and to men, whilst they live in mutual love, a celestial proprium, so that it appears to them as if they did good of or from themselves; hence the internal man is predicated of man as if it was his own. But whoever is principled in mutual love, acknowledges and believes that all goodness and truth are not his, but the Lord's, and that the ability to love another as himself, and especially as the angels, to love another more than himself, is the gift of the Lord, from which gift and its happiness he recedes, in proportion as he recedes from the acknowledgement that it is the Lord's. A. C. 1594.

Verse 33. To love God and the neighbour is more than whole burnt-offerings and sacrifices. — "Burnt-offerings and sacrifices" were nothing else than the types or representatives of internal worship, and when separated from internal worship they became idolatrous. Sacrifices were indeed commanded by Moses to the children of Israel; but they of the most ancient church, which was before the flood, were altogether unacquainted with sacrifices, nor did it ever enter their minds to worship the Lord by the slaying of animals. The ancient church which was after the flood was likewise unacquainted with sacrifices; that church was indeed in representative worship, but not in that of sacrifice. Sacrifices were first instituted in the succeeding church, which was called the Hebraic church, and thence spread among the Gentiles; thence also such worship descended to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and thus to their posterity. That the posterity of Jacob were principled in sacrificial worship before they departed from Egypt, thus before sacrifices were enjoined by Moses on Mount Sinai, may appear from Exodus 5:3; 10:25, 26; 18:12; 24:4, 5; and especially from the "golden calf." (Ex 32:5, 6.) This was done before the command was brought to them concerning the altar and sacrifices; which command, therefore, was given because sacrificial worship with them, as with the Gentiles, had become idolatrous; from which worship they could not be withdrawn, because they esteemed it to be of especial sanctity, and because what is once implanted from infancy with an idea of sanctity, particularly if it be implanted into children by their fathers, and thereby rooted in them, the Lord never breaks, but bends, unless it be contrary to essential order. Hence appears the reason why it was prescribed that sacrifices should be under such particular rules and regulations, as written in the law of Moses. That sacrifices were never acceptable to Jehovah, but were only permitted and tolerated for the reason just mentioned, plainly appears in the Prophets, as in Jer 7:21-23. AC 922, 2180.

"Burnt-offerings" denote worship grounded in the good of love, and "sacrifices" worship grounded in the truth of faith. AC 8680.

Verse 34. Kingdom of God.—See above, chap. 1:14, 15, Exposition.

Verses 35—38. And Jesus answering, said, teaching in the temple, How say the Scribes that Christ is the Son of David? &c.—That David might represent the Lord as to Divine Truth, the Lord was willing to be born of the house of David, and also to be called the Son, the stem, and the offspring of David, likewise the root of Jesse; but when the Lord put off the Human principle derived from the mother, and put on the Human principle derived from the Father, which is the Divine Human, He was then no longer the Son of David; this is meant by the Lord's words in the above verses. Hence it is, that He was not the Son of David, as neither the Son of Mary, whom therefore He did not call His mother, but woman. (Matt 12:46-49; Mark 3:31, to the end; Luke 8:19-21; John 2:4.) AE 205.

That the Lord had a Divine Principle and a Human one, the Divine one from Jehovah the Father, and the Human one from the Virgin Mary, is a known thing; hence it is that He was God and Man, and thus He had a Divine Essence and a Human Nature, the Divine Essence from the Father, the Human Nature from the Mother, and hence He was equal to the Father as to the Divine Principle, and inferior to the Father as to the Human; also that He did not transmute this Human Nature from the Mother into the Divine Essence, nor mixed the former with the latter, as the Doctrine of Faith, which is called the Athanasian Creed, teaches; for the Human Nature cannot be transmuted into the Divine Essence, nor be mixed with it. And yet, from the same doctrine, it is to be understood that the Divine Principle took to itself a Human Principle, that is, united itself to it, as the soul to its body, until they were not two, but one Person; from this consideration it follows, that He put off the Human Principle derived from the Mother, which in itself was like the Human Principle in another man, and thus material, and not on a Human Principle from the Father, which in itself is like its Divine Principle, and thus substantial, by virtue of which the Human Principle was also made Divine. Hence it is that the Lord, in the Word of the Prophets, is called Jehovah and God even as to the Human Principle; and in the Word of the Evangelists, the Lord, God, Messiah or Christ, and the Son of God, in whom mankind are to believe, and by whom they are to be saved. Now, whereas the Lord had from the beginning a Human Principle from the Mother, and this He successively put off, therefore, whilst He was in the world, He passed through two states, which are called a state of humiliation or exinanition, and a state of glorification or unification with the Divine Principle which is called the Father; a state of humiliation, so far and so long as He was in the Human Principle from the Mother, and a state of glorification, so far and so long as He was in the Human Principle derived from the Father. In the state of humiliation He prayed to the Father as to another distinct from Himself; but in the state of glorification, He discoursed with the Father as with Himself. In this latter state He said, that the Father was in Him and He in the Father, and that the Father and He were one; but in the state of humiliation He underwent temptations, and endured the cross, and prayed to the Father not to forsake Him; for the Divine Principle could not be tempted, and still less suffer the cross.

From these considerations it is now evident, that by temptations and continual victories at the time, and by the passion of the cross, which was the last temptation, He fully overcame the hells, and fully glorified the Human Principle, as was shown above. That the Lord put off the Human Principle derived from the Mother, and put on the Human Principle derived from the Divine Principle in Himself, which is called the Father, is evident also from this consideration, that the Lord, as often as He spoke from His own mouth to the Mother, did not call her Mother, but woman. In the Evangelists we read only three times that from His own mouth He spoke to the Mother and concerning her, and that on these occasions He twice called her woman, and that once He did not acknowledge her as His Mother. That He twice called her woman, we read in John,—" The Mother of Jesus said to Him, They have no wine. Jesus says to her, What [is it] to Me and you, Woman? My hour is not yet come;" (John 2:4.) and in the same Evangelist,—"Jesus from the cross sees the Mother and the disciple standing by, whom He loved; He says to His Mother, Woman, behold your son! Then says He to the disciple, Behold your mother!" (John 19:26, 27.) That on one occasion He did not acknowledge her, we read in Luke: Jesus was told, "Your mother and Your brethren stand without, and are desirous to see You." Jesus answering, said to them,—" My mother and My brethren are those, who hear the word of God and do it." (Luke 8:20, 21; Matt. 46—49; Mark 3:31-35.) In other passages Mary is called His Mother, but not from His own mouth. This is also confirmed by the circumstance that He did not acknowledge Himself to be the Son of David, for we read in the Evangelists,—"Jesus asked the Pharisees, saying, What think you of Christ? whose Son is He? They say to Him, The Son of David. He says to them, How then does David in spirit call Him Lord, saying, The Lord said to my Lord, Sit You on My right hand, until I make Your foes Your footstool? If David then call Him Lord, how is He his Son? And no one could answer Him a word." (Matt 22:41-46; Mark 12:35-37; Luke 20:41-44; Psalm 110:1.) From these considerations it is evident that the Lord, as to the glorified Human Principle, was not the Son of Mary, nor of David. What was the nature of His glorified Human Principle, He showed to Peter, James, and John, when He was transfigured before them;—that "His face did shine as the sun, and His clothing was as light; and then a voice from a cloud said, This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased: hear you Him." (Matt 17:1-8; Mark ix. 2—8; Luke 9:28-36.) The Lord also was seen by John, "as the sun shining in his strength." (Rev. i, 16.) DLW 35.

It is believed that the Lord, as to His Human Principle, not only was, but also is the Son of Mary; but in this the Christian world is mistaken. That He was the Son of Mary, is true; but that He still is the Son of Mary, is not true; for by acts of redemption He put off the Human Principle derived from the Mother, and put on the Human Principle derived from the Father. Hence it is that the Human Principle of the Lord is Divine, and that in Him God is Man, and Man, God. This is also confirmed by the consideration that He did not acknowledge Himself to be the Son of David; for we read in the Evangelist,—"Jesus asked the Pharisees, saying, What think you of the Christ? whose Son is He?" &c. TCR 102. AC 2649.

Verse 36. The Lord said to my Lord, Sit You on My right hand, until I make Yours enemies Your footstool.—By "right hand," when applied to the Lord, is signified both Omnipotence and Omniscience. The reason is, because to the right in heaven is the south, and to the left the north; and by the "south" is signified Divine Truth in the light, and by the "north," Divine Truth in the shade; and whereas all power appertains to Divine Good by Divine Truth, therefore by the "right hand," when applied to the Lord, is signified Omnipotence; and whereas all intelligence and wisdom appertain to Divine Good by Divine Truth, and to the right in heaven is Divine Truth in the light, as was said, therefore by the "right hand," when applied to the Lord, is also signified Omniscience. By the above words is described the Lord's combat in the world against the hells, and their subjugation, which was effected from the Divine Good by the Divine Truth. The "right hand" signifies the Divine Truth, wherefore it is said, "until I make Yours enemies Your footstool;" where, by "enemies," are signified the hells; and by "making them a footstool," is signified altogether to subdue. AE 298.

By "footstool" are here signified things natural, both sensual things and scientific, and hence the rational things of man, which are called "enemies," when they pervert worship, and this from the literal sense of the Word; so that there is worship only in things external, and no internal worship but what is filthy. AC 3162. See also AC 2162.

Verse 36. The Lord said to my Lord, &c.—By these words is signified the Divine Principle itself, which is called Father, to the Divine Human Principle, which is called Son. "Sit You on My right hand," signifies Divine Power or Omnipotence by Divine Truth; "until I make Yours enemies Your footstool," signifies until the hells are conquered and subdued, and the wicked cast down thither; "enemies" denote the hells, consequently the wicked; and "footstool" signifies the lowest region beneath the heavens, under which are the hells. For the Lord, whilst He was in the world, was Divine Truth, which has Omnipotence, and by which He conquered and subdued the hells. AE 687.

Verse 39. Chief seats in synagogues.—For the signification of "synagogue," see chap. 1:21, Exposition.

Verse 41. Jesus saw how the multitude cast money into the treasury, &c.—That good done from a selfish motive, or when the heart is not purified, is of no avail, see above, chap. 10:20, 22, Exposition.

Verse 42. One poor widow coming, cast in two mites, &c.— By a "widow" is signified one who is in good without truth, and still desires truth. The reason why this is signified by a widow, is, because by a "man" [vir] is signified truth, and by his "wife," good; wherefore the wife of a man, when made a "widow," signifies good without truth. AC 9198.


Chapter XII.

verse 11. This was the Lord's doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes.—The pronoun "this," as it here occurs, is in the feminine gender, and so likewise is the adjective "marvelous;" from which circumstance it is evident that both the pronoun and the adjective have reference to the head of the corner, which "head," in the original Greek, is also expressed by a feminine substantive.

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