Spiritual Meaning of
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The reason why holding a feast signifies worship from a glad mind, is that the feast was to be held at a way of three days from Egypt, thus in a state of no infestation by falsities, that is, in a state of liberty; for he who is being liberated from falsities and from the distress in which he then is, from a glad mind gives thanks to God; thus holds a feast. Moreover the feasts which were instituted with that people, and which were three every year, are likewise said to have been instituted in memory of their liberation from slavery in Egypt; that is, in the spiritual sense, in memory of liberation from infestation by falsities, through the Lord's coming into the world. Therefore it was also commanded that on those occasions they should be glad, as is manifest in Moses in regard to the feast of tabernacles:--
In the feast of tabernacles, they shall take on the first day the fruit of the tree of honor, spathes of palm-trees, and a branch of a dense tree, and willows of the torrent; and ye shall be glad before Jehovah your God seven days (Lev. 23:40);
 by the fruit of the tree of honor, spathes of palm-trees, a branch of a dense tree, and willows of the torrent, is signified joy from good and truth from man's inmost to his external. The good of love, which is inmost, is signified by the fruit of the tree of honor; the good of faith by the spathes of palm trees; the truth of memory-knowledge, by the branch of a dense tree; and sensuous truth, which is most external, by the willows of the torrent. These things could not have been ordered to be taken without a reason from the spiritual world, which reason cannot possibly appear to anyone except from the internal sense.
 That they were to be glad in the feast of weeks is also evident in Moses:--
Thou shalt make the feast of weeks to Jehovah thy God, and thou shalt he glad before Jehovah thy God, thou and thy son, and thy daughter, and thy manservant, and thy maidservant, and the Levite who is in thy gates (Deut. 16:10, 11);
by these words also, in the internal sense, is signified gladness from good and truth from the inmost to the external.
 That there was to be gladness in the feasts, and thus that to hold a feast is to worship from a glad mind, is also plain from the following passages. In Isaiah:--
Ye shall have a song as in the nights when a feast is hallowed (Isa. 30:29).
Behold upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace! I keep thy feasts, O Judah, render thy vows; for Belial shall no longer pass through thee; he is wholly cut off (Nahum 1:15).
The fasts shall be to the house of Judah for joy and for gladness, and for good feasts; only love ye truth and peace (Zech. 8:19).
I will cause all her joy to cease, her feast, her new moon (Hosea 2:11).
And in Amos:--
I will turn your feasts into mourning, and all your songs into a lament (Amos 8:10).
 That to hold a feast denotes worship from a glad mind, because they had been liberated from servitude in Egypt, that is, in the spiritual sense, because they had been liberated from infestation by falsities, is manifest from the feast of the passover. This was commanded to be celebrated yearly on the day when they went forth out of Egypt, and this on account of the liberation of the sons of Israel from servitude, that is, on account of the liberation of those who are of the spiritual church from falsities, thus from damnation; and as the Lord liberated them by His coming, and lifted them up with Him into heaven when He rose again, therefore this was also done at the passover. This is likewise signified by the Lord's words in John:--
Now is the judgment of this world, now shall the prince of this world be cast out. And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all unto Me (John 12:31, 32).
from AC 7093
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|Author: E. Swedenborg (1688-1772).||Design: I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002.||www.BibleMeanings.info|