Spiritual Summary of REVELATION 18    previous  -  next  -  text  -  details  -  Revelation  -  BM Home  -  Full Page

Continuation concerning the Roman Catholic religious persuasion. That on account of adulterations and profanations of the truths of the Word, and thence of the church, it will perish (verses 1-8). Concerning the highest in the ecclesiastical order there, what their quality is, and concerning their mourning (verses 9, 10). Concerning the lower ones in that order (verses 11-16). Concerning the laity and the common people, who are under obedience to them (verses 17-19). The joy of the angels on account of its removal (ver. 20). Concerning its destruction in the spiritual world on account of its having no acknowledgment of, inquiry after, enlightenment in, and reception of truth, and hence no conjunction of truth and good, which makes the church (verses 21-24).

Ver. 1. "After these things I saw," signifies a continuation respecting the Roman Catholic religious persuasion (n. 753). "I saw an angel coming down out of heaven, having great authority, and the earth was lightened by his glory," signifies a strong influx of the Lord out of heaven by the Divine truth, from which His church was in celestial light (n. 754).

Ver. 2. "And he cried out mightily with a great voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen," signifies that he made it known, that by the Lord‘s Divine power all who have been in that religion and at the same time in the love of domineering from it, were destroyed in the spiritual world, and cast into many hells (n. 755). "And is be come a habitation of demons," signifies that their hells are the hells of the lusts of domineering from the fire of the love of self, and of the lusts of profaning the truths of heaven from the spurious zeal of that love (n. 756). "And a hold of every unclean spirit, and a hold of every unclean and hateful bird," signifies that the evils of will and thence of the deed, and the falsities of thought and thence of design, of those who are in those hells, are diabolical, because they are turned away from the Lord to themselves (n. 757).

Ver. 3. "For all the nations have drunk of the wine of the anger of her whoredom, and the kings of the earth have committed whoredom with her," signifies that they have put forth wicked dogmas, which are adulterations and profanations of the good and truth of the Word, and have imbued with them all that have been born and brought up in the kingdoms under their domination (n. 758). "And the merchants of the earth have become rich from the abundance of her luxuries," signifies the greater and less in rank in that hierarchy, who through dominion over holy things strive for Divine majesty and super-regal glory, and continually aim to establish it by the multiplication of monasteries and of possessions under them, and by the treasures which without end they gather together and heap up from the world, and thus procure to themselves corporeal and natural delights from the celestial and spiritual dominion attributed to them (n. 759).

Ver. 4. "And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye become not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues," signifies exhortation from the Lord to all, as well those who are in that religion as those who are not in it, to beware of conjunction with it by acknowledgment and affection, lest as to their souls they should be conjoined to its abominations, and should perish (n. 760).

Ver. 5. "For her sins have reached even unto heaven, and God hath remembered her injustices," signifies, that its evils and falsities infest the heavens, and that the Lord will protect these from violence thence (n. 761).

Ver. 6. "Render unto her even as she hath rendered unto you; double unto her double according to her works; in the cup which she hath mingled, mingle to her double," signifies just retribution and punishment after death, that then the evils and falsities by which they have seduced and destroyed others, will return upon them, according to their quantity and quality (n. 762).

Ver. 7. As much "as she hath glorified herself and lived luxuriously, so much torment and mourning give her," signifies that in the degree of their elation of heart from dominion and according to their exultation of mind and body from riches, they have after death internal pain from being cast down and derided, and from want and misery (n. 763). "For she saith in her heart, I sit a queen, and am not a widow, and shall not see mourning," signifies that they have these things, because from elation of heart over their dominion and from exultation of mind over their riches, they are in trust and confidence that they will have dominion forever, and shall protect themselves, and that they can never he deprived of them (n. 764).

Ver. 8. "For this in one hour’ shall her plague come, death and mourning and famine," signifies that off this account, at the time of the Last Judgment, the punishments of the evils which they have done will return upon them, which are death, which is infernal life, and internal grief from being cast down from dominion; mourning which is internal grief from want and wretchedness in place of opulence; and hunger, which is the deprivation of the understanding of all truth (n. 765). "And she shall be burned up in fire, for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her," signifies that they will be hatreds against the Lord and against His heaven and church, because they then see that the Lord alone had dominion and reigns over all things in the heavens and on earth, and not at all any man from himself (n. 766).

Ver. 9. "And the kings of the earth shall weep for her and wail over her, who have committed whoredom and lived luxuriously with her, when they shall see the smoke of her burning," signifies the more interior pains of those who have been in higher dominion and its delights, by means of the falsified and adulterated truths of the Word which they made the holy things of the church, when they see them turned into profane things (n. 767).

Ver. 10. "And standing afar off for the fear of her torment, saying, Woe, woe, that great city Babylon, that mighty city; for in one hour is thy judgment come," signifies their fear of punishments, and their grievous lamentation that that religious persuasion, so fortified, could be so suddenly and completely overturned, and that they could perish (n. 769).

Ver. 11. "And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her, because no one buyeth their merchandise any more," signifies the lesser in the order, who minister and make gain by holy things, here their griefs that after the destruction of Babylon they cannot make profits by them as before (n. 771).

Ver. 12. "Merchandise of gold and silver and precious stone and pearls," signifies that they no longer have these things, because they have no spiritual goods and truths, to which such things correspond (n. 772). "And fine linen and purple and silk and scarlet," signifies that they no longer have these things, because they have not the celestial goods and truths to which such things correspond (n. 773). "And all thyine wood and every vessel of ivory," signifies that they no longer have these, because they have not the natural goods and truths to which such things correspond (n. 774). "And every vessel of precious wood and of brass and iron and marble" signifies that they no longer have these, because they have not the scientific goods and truths in things of the church to which such things correspond (n. 775).

Ver. 13. "And cinnamon and incense and ointment and frankincense," signifies that they no longer have worship from spiritual goods and truths, because they have nothing within their worship, which corresponds to the things here named (n. 777). "And wine and oil and fine-flour and wheat," signifies that they no longer have worship from celestial truths and goods, because they have not within their worship the things which correspond to those here named (n. 778). "And beasts of burden and sheep," signifies that they no longer have worship from the external or natural goods and truths of the church, because they have not anything within their worship which corresponds to the above mentioned things (n. 780). "And horses and carriages and bodies and souls of men," signifies all those things according to the understanding of the Word and doctrine thence, and according to the goods and truths of the sense of its letter, which they have not, because they have falsified and adulterated them (n. 781).

Ver. 14. "And the fruits of the desire of thy soul have departed from thee, and all fat and splendid things have departed from thee, and thou shalt find them no more," signifies that all the blessedness and happiness of heaven, even the external, such as are desired by them, will altogether flee away, and will no longer appear, because they have no celestial and spiritual affections of good and truth (n. 782).

Ver. 15. "And the merchants of these things, who became rich by her, shall stand afar off, for fear of her torment, weeping and mourning," signifies the state before damnation, and then their fear and lamentation who have made gain by various dispensations and promises of heavenly joys, (n. 783).

Ver. 16. "And saying, Woe, woe, that great city, arrayed in fine-linen and purple and scarlet, and inwrought with gold and precious stone and pearls, for in one hour so great riches were devastated," signifies grievous lamentation that their magnificence and their gains are so suddenly and so fully destroyed (n. 785).

Ver. 17. "And every pilot, and everyone employed upon ships, and sailors, and as many as work at sea," signifies those who are called the laity, as well they who are placed in greater dignity as those that are in less, even to the common people, who are attached to that religious persuasion, and love and kiss it, or acknowledge and venerate it in heart (n. 786). "Stood afar off

(Ver. 18) and cried when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, What city is like unto this city?" signifies their mourning in a remote state over the condemnation of that religious persuasion, which they believed to be supereminent above every religion in the world (n. 787).

Ver. 19. "And they cast dust upon their heads, and cried weeping and mourning, saying, Woe, woe, that great city," signifies their interior and exterior grief and mourning which is lamentation that so eminent a religious persuasion should be altogether destroyed and condemned (n. 788). "In which all that had ships in the sea were made rich by her costliness, for in one hour they were devastated," signifies on this account, that by the holy things of that religious persuasion all, as many as were willing to buy, were absolved, and for worldly and temporal riches received heavenly and eternal riches (n. 789).

Ver. 20. "Exult over her, O heaven, and ye holy apostles and prophets, for God hath judged your judgment upon her," signifies that the angels of heaven and the men of the church who are in the goods and truths from the Word should now rejoice in heart that those who are in the evils and falsities of that religious persuasion are removed and rejected (n. 790).

Ver. 21. "And one strong angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast into the sea, saying, Thus with violence shall that great city, Babylon, be cast down, and shall not be found any more," signifies that by a strong influx of the Lord out of heaven, that religious persuasion with all its adulterated truths of the Word, will be cast headlong into hell, and will not appear to the angels any more (n. 791).

Ver. 22. "And the voice of harpers and musicians and pipers and trumpeters shall not be heard in thee any more," signifies that there will not be with them any affection of spiritual truth and good nor any affection of celestial good and truth (n. 792). "And no craftsman of any craft shall be found any more in thee," signifies that they who are in that religious persuasion from doctrine and from a life according to it, have no understanding of spiritual truth, and thence no thought of spiritual truth, so far as it is from themselves (n. 793). "And the voice of a millstone shall not be heard in thee any more," signifies that with those who are in that religious persuasion from its doctrine and from a life according to it, there is no searching for, investigation and confirmation of spiritual truth, because the falsity received and confirmed, and thus implanted, stands in the way (n. 794).

Ver. 23. "And the light of a lamp shall not shine in thee any more" signifies that they who are in that religious persuasion from doctrine and from a life according to it, have no enlightenment from the Lord, and hence no perception of spiritual truth (n. 796). "And the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall not be heard in thee any more," signifies that they who are in that religious persuasion from doctrine and from a life according to it, have no conjunction of good and truth, which makes the church (n. 797). "For thy great ones were the merchants of the earth," signifies that the higher ones in their ecclesiastical hierarchy are such; because by the various and arbitrary rights left to them in the statutes of the order, they make gain and profit (n. 799). "For by thy sorcery all the nations were seduced," signifies their wicked arts and devices, by which they have led away the minds (animus) of all from the holy worship of the Lord to the profane worship of living and dead men and idols (n. 800).

Ver. 24. "And in her was found the blood of prophets and of saints, and of all that have been slain upon the earth," signifies that from the religious persuasion which is meant by "the city Babylon" is the adulteration and profanation of every truth of the Word and thence of the church, and that falsity has emanated therefrom into the whole Christian world.

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