Spiritual Meaning of

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That pasture in the internal sense denotes that which sustains man's spiritual life, is also evident from other passages in the Word; as in Isaiah:--

I gave thee for a covenant of the people, to restore the land; to say to them that are bound, Go forth; to them that are in darkness, Be ye revealed. They shall feed upon the ways; and on all hillsides shall be their pasture (Isa 49:8, 9);

to feed upon the ways denotes to be instructed in truths. Ways are truths, (AC 627, 2333); and to feed is to be instructed, (AC 5201); pasture on all hillsides denotes to be sustained from good, for hills, like mountains, are the goods of love (AC 795, 796, 1430, 2722, 4210).

[3] In Jeremiah:--

Woe to the shepherds that destroy and scatter the flock of My pasture (Jer. 23:1);

where pasture denotes such things as sustain spiritual life. Again:--

The princes of Zion are become like harts; they have found no pasture (Lam. 1:6);

they have found no pasture denotes no truth of good.

[4] In Ezekiel:--

I, even I, will search for My flock, I will feed them in a good pasture, and in the mountains of the height of Israel shall their fold be; thus shall they lie down in a good fold, and in fat pasture shall they feed upon the mountains of Israel (Ezek. 34:11, 14);

where good and fat pasture upon the mountains of Israel denotes the goods of truth. Again:--

Seemeth it a small thing unto you to have eaten up the good pasture, but ye must tread down with your feet the residue of your pastures (Ezek. 34:18);

where the signification is similar. In Hosea:--

I knew thee in the wilderness, in the land of drought. When they had their pasture, then were they sated; they were sated, and their heart was elated (Hosea 13:5, 6).

In Joel:--

The beast groaneth, the herds of the ox are perplexed, because they have no pasture, yea, the flocks of small cattle are made desolate (Joel 1:18).

In David:--

Jehovah is my shepherd; in pasture of herb He will make me lie down; to the waters of rest He will lead me; He will restore my soul (Ps. 23:1-3).


Jehovah hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are His people, and the flock of His pasture (Ps. 100:3).

[5] Pasture in these passages denotes the truths in which man is instructed, here such things as regard spiritual life; for spiritual life is such that if this pasturage fails, it languishes and as it were pines away as does the body when it lacks food. That pasture denotes the good and truth which restore and sustain the soul or spirit of man, is clear from the Lord's words in John:--

I am the door; by Me if anyone enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and go out, and shall find pasture (John 10:9);

where pasture denotes the goods and truths which those have who acknowledge the Lord, and seek life from Him alone.

from AC 6078

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