Spiritual Meaning of REVELATION 1:12
previous  -  next  -  text  -  summary  -  Revelation  -  BM Home  -  Full Page

AR 42. Verse 12. And I turned to see the voice that spake with me, signifies inversion of the state of those who are in the good of life, as to the perception of truth in the Word, when they turn themselves to the Lord. John says that he heard a voice behind him (verse 10), and now, that he turned to see the voice; and again, that being turned, he saw seven lampstands; from which it is evident, that he heard a voice from behind, and that he turned himself, to see from whence it proceeded; that there is an arcanum in this, is evident. The arcanum is that before man turns himself to the Lord, and acknowledges Him as the God of heaven and earth, he cannot see the Divine truth in the Word. The reason is, that God is one, both in Person and in essence, in whom there is the Trinity; and that God is the Lord. Therefore, they who acknowledge a Trinity of Persons, look primarily to the Father, and some to the Holy Spirit, and rarely to the Lord, and if to the Lord, they think of His Human as of an ordinary man. When a man does this, he can by no means be enlightened in the Word, for the Lord is the Word, for it is from Him and concerning Him. Therefore they who do not approach the Lord alone, see Him and His Word behind them, and not before them; or backward, and not in front. This is the arcanum which lies concealed in these words: "That John heard a voice behind him, and that he turned to see the voice, and, being turned, saw seven golden lampstands, and in the midst of them the Son of man;" for the voice which he heard came from the Son of man, who is the Lord. That the Lord alone is the God of heaven and earth, He now teaches in a manifest voice, for He says:--

I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, saith the Lord, Who is, and Who was, and Who is to come (Apoc. 1:8);

and here:--

I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last (Apoc. 1:11);

and afterwards:--

I am the First and the Last (Apoc. 1:17; 2:8).

That by a "voice," when from the Lord is meant the Divine Truth, may be seen in (n. 37). And that by "John" are meant those of the church, who are in the good of life (n. 5, 6). From these things it may now appear, that by these words:--

And I turned to see the voice which spake with me,

is signified an inversion of the state of those who are in the good of life, as to the perception of truth in the Word, when they turn themselves to the Lord.

AR 43. And having turned, I saw seven golden lampstands, signifies the New Church, which will be in enlightenment from the Lord out of the Word. That the "seven lampstands" are the seven churches, is said in the last verse of this chapter; and that by the seven churches are meant all who are in the Christian world, and draw near to the church, may be seen in (n. 10); and in particular according to the state of reception of each (n. 41). The reason why the New Church is meant by "the seven lampstands" is, because in it, and in the midst of it, the Lord is; for it is said, that "in the midst of the seven lampstands he saw one like unto the Son of man," and by "the Son of man" is meant the Lord as to the Word. The lampstands were seen to be golden, because gold signifies good, and every church is a church from good which is formed by truths; that "gold" signifies good, will be seen in what follows. Those lampstands were not placed one close to another, or in contact, but at certain distances, forming a kind of circle, as is evident from these words in the subsequent chapter:--

These things saith He, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden lampstands (Apoc. 2:1).

Nothing is said of the lamps of those lampstands; but in what follows it is said, that:--

The Holy Jerusalem (that is, the New Church), hath no need of the sun, neither of the moon, for its lamp is the Lamb, and the nations which are saved shall walk in the light of it (Apoc. 21:23, 24).

And further:--

They need no lamp, for the Lord God giveth them light (Apoc. 22:5);

for they who will be of the Lord’s New Church, are only lamp-stands which will give light from the Lord. By the "golden lampstand in the tabernacle," nothing else was represented than the church as to enlightenment from the Lord, concerning which lampstand see (Exod. 25:31-40; 37:17-24; Lev. 24:3, 4; Num. 8:2-4). That it represented the Lord‘s church as to Divine spiritual love, which is love towards the neighbor, may be seen in The Arcana Coelestia, published at London (AC n. 9548, 9555, 9558, 9561, 9570, 9783); (n. 493). By the "lampstand" in Zech. 4, is also signified the New Church to be established by the Lord, because it signifies the new house of God, or the new temple; as is evident from what follows there; and by "the house of God," or "the temple," the church is signified, and in the highest sense, the Lord’s Divine Human, as He Himself teaches (John 2:19-21). But it shall be told what is signified in its order, in (Zech. 4:1-7) when "the lampstand" was seen by him. By those things contained from (verses 1 to 7), is signified the enlightenment of the New Church by the Lord, from the good of love by truth, "the olive trees" there signify the church as to the good of love; by the things there in (Zech. 4:8-10), is signified that these things are from the Lord; by "Zerubbabel," who is to build the house, thus the church, the Lord is represented; by the things in (Zech. 4:11-14), is signified that in that church there will also be truths from a celestial origin. This explanation of that chapter was given me by the Lord through heaven.

REVELATION 1:12    previous  -  next  -  text  -  summary  -  Revelation  -  Full Page

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