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To him that presides, upon Gittith, a Psalm of Asaph.
Celebration of the lord by his church, verses 1 to 4; that he will deliver them from the hells when invoked, and when he has proved them, verses 5 to 7; that the church among the sons of Jacob had turned away, and worshiped another god, verses 8 to 11; and were therefore left to themselves, verse 12; if they had obeyed, the hells would have been removed from them, and they would have enjoyed every good, verses 13 to 16.
Verses 1, 2, 3. Sing aloud to God our strength; make a joyful noise to the god of Jacob: lift up a song and bring here the timbrel, the pleasant harp, with the psaltery; blow the trumpet in the new moon, in the time appointed on the day of our solemn festival. Various kinds of affections in which are grounded confession and glorification of the lord, are here expressed by various kinds of sounds and instruments; by various kinds of sounds, by singing aloud to the god of our strength; and by various kinds of instruments, by harps, timbrel, and trumpets, but to explain the significations of each is not our present intention, only to show what is meant by the harp; and to sing to jehovah with the harp; with the harp and the voice of singing signifies confession from the affection of spiritual good and truth, for every affection, because it is of love, when it falls into sound, has a sound suitable to itself, whence also from the sound which is in speech, and in which the expressions of speech as it were flow, is heard the affection of another, which is also thence known to the person addressed, and this manifestly in the spiritual world, where all sounds of speech manifest affections. AE 323.
That Joseph in this passage denotes the spiritual church, or the spiritual man, is evident from the particular words and expressions contained in it, for there are expressions in the Word which express spiritual things, and others which express celestial things, and this regularly throughout the Word. AC 3969.
To lift up a song, etc. signifies confession from spiritual and celestial truths, and the delights of the affection of truth and of good, see above AE 323, 326.
To blow the trumpet in the new moon, on the day of our festival, signifies worship from the delights of those affections; this he ordained as a statute for Israel and a testimony for Joseph, signifies that those things related to the new church established amongst the sons of Israel, which church was in the truths of doctrine; in his going forth against the land of Egypt, where I heard a language which I knew not, signifies when the old church was destroyed, in which then were the falses of doctrine; for Egypt, when Joseph was ruler there, represented the church which was in the knowledges of truth and of good, and in confirming scientifics, but when they began to hate the sons of Israel Egypt then represented the church destroyed, in which were mere falses, for it is said, that a new king arose over the Egyptians, who knew not Joseph, wherefore also the Egyptians with Pharaoh, who persecuted the sons of Israel, were overwhelmed in the Red Sea. AE 448.
Verse 5. I heard a language (a lip) which I knew not. In the Word, mention is frequently made of the lip, the mouth, and the tongue, and by the lip is signified doctrine, by the mouth, thought, and by the tongue, confession; the reason of such signification of the lip, mouth, and tongue, is because they are the externals of man, by which things internal are made manifest, and things internal which are in the internal or spiritual man are what are signified; for the Word in the letter consists of external things which appear before the eyes, and are perceived by the senses, whence the Word in the letter is natural, and this in order that the divine truth which it contains, may be there in its ultimate, and so in fullness; but those external things, which are natural, comprehend in themselves things internal, which are spiritual, and are therefore the things signified. That tongues signify confessions from religion, and according to the dogmas of religion, may appear from the following passages, as in Isaiah: "The time comes when all nations and tongues shall be gathered together, that they may come and see my glory," Is 66:18; speaking of the advent of the lord; by nations and tongues are signified all who are in the good of life according to their religions; tongues signify religions from confession, wherefore it is said, that they may come and see my glory, glory signifying divine truth, by which the church exists. Again, in Jeremiah; "Behold I bring upon you a nation, a nation whose tongue you shall not know, neither understand what they speak, they shall devour your harvest and your bread," Jer 5:15, 16; where it is not understood that a nation of an unknown tongue, or of an unintelligible speech, should be brought upon them, but an evil nation altogether of a different religion, whose dogmas they should not know, nor understand the reasonings derived from them; and in the abstract sense are signified the falses of evil altogether opposite to the truths of good, for nation in the abstract sense here denotes evil, and tongue denotes the false of religion, and to speak denotes to reason thence: it therefore follows, they shall devour your harvest and your bread, for by harvest are signified truths by which good is procured, by bread, the good thence derived, and by devouring, to consume and deprive. AE 455.
Verse 6.I caused his shoulder to be removed from the burden; his hands passed away from the furnace. The natural man as to the scientific principle is signified by the furnace of iron; the furnace is the natural man, and iron is the scientific principle, in this case the false scientific principle, because it is said that they were brought out; for the natural man, unless he be led by the spiritual man, is in falses and in evils, by reason of his having no light from heaven, for light from heaven flows in through the spiritual man into the natural, and enlightens, teaches, and leads; the contrary is the case when the natural man does not think and act under the guidance of the spiritual man; in this case also he is in slavery, for he thinks and acts from all falses and evils which are from hell; this is signified by their being said to be brought out of bondage; for all liberty of thought and of action is from the spiritual man, inasmuch as he thinks and acts from heaven and the lord, and to be led of the lord is freedom: from these considerations it may be manifest whence it is that Egypt is called a furnace of iron, and a house of bondage, AE 540.
To carry on the shoulders when subjection is treated of, signifies service, see Gen 49:13; but when the subject treated of is concerning rule, then it signifies the highest power, see Isaiah 9:6. AC 9836.
Verse 7. You called in distress and I delivered you; I answered you in the secret place of thunder; I proved you at the waters of Meribah. As to what concerns this temptation itself, and its quality, it is to be noted that in this passage are described those who in temptations almost yield, namely who complain against heaven, and also against the Divine Providence; these things are signified in the internal sense by what precedes, and also by what follows in this verse, and are the quality of the state of temptation, which is signified by Massah, and the quality of complaint or temptation is signified by Meribah. AC 8588.
Verses 13 and 16. O that my people had hearkened to me! O that Israel had walked in my ways! He would have fed them with the fat of wheat, and with honey out of the rock would I have satisfied you. That wheat denotes the things that are of love and charity, may also appear from the following passages, "jehovah makes him to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feeds him with the produce of fields; he makes him to suck honey out of the rock, and oil out of the flinty rock, butter of the herd and milk of the flock, with the fat of lambs and of rams, the sons of Bashan, and of goats, with the fat of the kidneys of wheat, and you drink the blood of the grape pure wine," Deut 32:13, 14; in this passage, in the internal sense, the ancient church is treated of, and its state at its establishment, and all the things relating to love and charity, and to faith, are described by significatives; the fat of the kidneys of wheat denotes the celestial principle of love and charity. AC 3941.
To suck honey out of the rock denotes delight derived from scientific truth. AC 5620.
Inasmuch as rock signifies the lord as to faith, and faith from the lord, therefore also wonderful things were done upon a rock. AC 8581.
By the fat of wheat is also signified the delight of spiritual good, and by honey out of the rock the delight of natural good by truths from the lord, it is to be noted that natural good is not good, unless also there be in it spiritual good, for all good flows in through the spiritual man or mind, into the natural man or mind; and so far as the natural man or mind receives the good of the spiritual man or mind, so far it receives good. AE 619.PSALMS 81 Other translations - previous - next - meaning - Psalms - BM Home - Full Page