Spiritual Meaning of REVELATION 8:11
previous  -  next  -  text  -  summary  -  Revelation  -  BM Home  -  Full Page

AR 410. Verse 11. And the name of the star is called Wormwood; and the third part of the waters became wormwood, signifies the infernal falsity from which their own intelligence is derived, and by which all the truths of the Word are falsified. By "a star" is signified their own intelligence springing from pride from infernal love (n. 408). By "name" is signified its quality (n. 81, 122, 165); by "wormwood" is signified infernal falsity concerning which something will be said presently; by "waters" are signified truths (n. 50), here the truths of the Word, because the subject relates to faith; by "the third part" is signified all, as above; from these taken together the sense results as delivered above. "Wormwood" signifies infernal falsity, from its intense bitterness, whereby it renders food and drink abominable; such falsity is signified therefore by "wormwood," in the following passages:--

Behold, I feed these people with wormwood, and I will give them water of gall to drink (Jer. 9:14, 15).

Thus saith Jehovah against the prophets: Behold, I feed them with wormwood, and I will make them drink the water of gall; for from the prophets of Jerusalem hypocrisy is gone forth into the whole earth (Jer. 23:15).

Ye turn judgment into gall, and the fruit of justice into wormwood (Amos 5:7; 6:12).

Lest there should be among you a root that beareth gall and wormwood (Deut. 29:18).

Since the Jewish church had falsified all the truths of the Word, like the church here treated of, and since the Lord by all things of His passion represented it, by permitting the Jews to treat Him as they did the Word, because He was the Word, therefore They gave Him vinegar mingled with gall (which is like wormwood), but, tasting it, He would not drink (Matt. 27:34; Mark 15:23; Ps. 69:21). Because the Jewish church was such, therefore it is thus described:--

He hath filled me with bitterness, and hath made me drunken with wormwood (Lam. 3:15, 18, 19).

AR 411. And many men died of the waters, because they were made bitter, signifies the extinction of spiritual life with many from the falsified truths of the Word. "Many men died," signifies the extinction of spiritual life; for man from the spiritual life with him is called alive, but from the natural life separated from spiritual life, he is called dead; "of the waters because they were made bitter," signifies by the falsified truths of the Word; that "waters" are the truths of the Word may be seen in (n. 409). The reason why "bitter" signifies what is falsified, is, because the bitter of wormwood is meant, and by "wormwood" is signified infernal falsity (n. 410). A Christian man has spiritual life from no other source than from the truths of the Word, for in them there is life; but when the truths of the Word are falsified, and man understands and views them according to the falsities of his religion, then spiritual life with him is extinguished. The reason is, because the Word communicates with heaven, therefore when it is read by man, the truths therein ascend into heaven, and the falsities to which truths are adjoined or conjoined, tend towards hell, whence there is a rending asunder, whereby the life of the Word is extinguished. But this is the case only with those who confirm falsities by the Word, but not with those who do not confirm them. I have seen such rendings asunder, and have heard the noise like that of wood split by the fire on a hearth. "Bitter" signifies what is falsified also in the following passages:--

Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil, that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter (Isa. 5:20).

They shall not drink wine with a song; strong drink shall be bitter to them that drink it (Isa. 24:9).

The like is signified by:--

The little book that was eaten, which was sweet in the month, and by which the belly was made bitter (Apoc. 10:9, 10).

And by this:--

They came to Marah but they could not drink of the waters, on account of the bitterness; but Jehovah showed him wood, which he cast into the waters, and they became sweet (Exod. 15:23-25.)

"Wood," in the Word, signifies good. The same is also signified by:--

The wild gourds which were put into the pottage, by reason of which the sons of the prophets cried out, There is death in the pot, which Elisha healed by putting in meal (2 Kings 4:38-41).

Meal signifies truth from good.

REVELATION 8:11    previous  -  next  -  text  -  summary  -  Revelation  -  Full Page

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