Spiritual Meaning of
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That beasts signify man's affections--evil affections with the evil, and good affections with the good--is evident from numerous passages in the Word, as in Ezekiel:--
Behold, I am for you, and I will look back to you, that ye may be tilled and sown, and I will multiply upon you man and beast, and they shall be multiplied and bring forth fruit; and I will cause you to dwell as in your ancient times (Ezekiel 36:9, 11),
treating of regeneration. In Joel:--
Be not afraid ye beasts of My field, for the dwelling-places of the wilderness are become grassy (Joel 2:22).
In David also:--
So foolish was I, I was as a beast before Thee (Ps. 73:22).
In Jeremiah, treating of regeneration:--
Behold the days come, saith Jehovah, that I will sow the house of Israel and the house of Judah with the seed of man, and with the seed of beast, and I will watch over them to build and to plant (Jeremiah 31:27, 28).
 Wild animals have a similar signification, as in Hosea:--
In that day will I make a covenant for them with the will animal of the field, and with the fowl of the heavens, and with the creeping thing of the earth (Hosea 2:18).
Thou shalt not be afraid of the wild animals of the earth, for thy covenant is with the stones of the field, and the wild animals of the field shall be at peace with thee (Job 5:22, 23).
I will make with you a covenant of peace, and will cause the evil wild animal to cease out of the land, that they may dwell confidently in the wilderness (Ezekiel 34:25).
The wild animals of the field shall honor me, because I have given waters in the wilderness (Isaiah 43:20).
All the fowls of the heavens made their nests in his boughs, and under his branches did all the wild animals of the field bring forth their young, and under his shadow dwelt all great nations (Ezekiel 31:6).
This is said of the Assyrian, by whom is signified the spiritual man, and who is compared to the garden of Eden. In David:--
Glorify ye Him, all His angels, glorify Jehovah from the earth, ye whales, fruit-trees, wild animal, and every beast, creeping thing, and flying fowl (Ps. 148:2, 7, 9, 10).
Here mention is made of the same things--as whales, the fruit-tree, wild animal, the beast, creeping thing, and fowl, which, unless they had signified living principles in man, could never have been called upon to glorify Jehovah.
 The Prophets carefully distinguish between beasts and wild animals of the earth, and beasts and wild animals of the field. Nevertheless goods in man are called beasts, just as those who are nearest the Lord in heaven are called animals, both in Ezekiel and in John:--
All the angels stood round about the throne, and the elders, and the four animals, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshiped the Lamb (Rev. 7:11; 19:4).
Those also who have the gospel preached to them are called creatures, because they are to be created anew:--
Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature (Mark 16:15).
from AC 46
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|Author: E. Swedenborg (1688-1772).||Design: I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002.||www.BibleMeanings.info|