Spiritual Meaning of
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That five hundred denotes what is full is because this number is compounded of five twice multiplied by ten, or five times a hundred; and by five is signified much, in like manner by ten, and by a hundred; hence by five hundred is signified what is full. That by five is signified much, (AC 5708, 5956, 9102); so by ten, (AC 3107, 4638); also by a hundred, (AC 4400, 6582, 6594); and that all numbers in the Word signify real thing, (AC 9488); and that compound numbers signify the like as the simple ones from which they come forth by multiplication, (AC 5291, 5335, 5708, 7973).
 That numbers signify real things is clearly evident in Ezekiel, where the house of God with all within and without it, and also the new earth, are measured, and are described by the numbers of the measure (chapters 40 to 48); and by the new earth is there meant the church, and by the house of God the holiness of it; in like manner by John in the Apocalypse, where also the New Jerusalem, by which also is meant a new church, is described by the numbers of the measure. If numbers had not signified real things, all these measurements would have been of no value.
 That five hundred signifies the whole from one end to the other, thus what is full, is evident from this in Ezekiel:--
He measured outside the house, or temple, on the eastern quarter, five hundred reeds round about; on the northern quarter five hundred reeds round about; on the southern quarter five hundred reed; and on the quarter of the sea five hundred reeds. Its wall round about; the length five hundred reeds, and the breadth five hundred reeds; to distinguish between that which was holy and that which was profane (Ezek. 42:15-20);
from which words it is plain that five hundred denotes the whole in the complex, or everything holy from one end to the other, thus what is full, for it is said that the wall, which was of this length and breadth in a square, distinguished between what was holy and what was profane.
 That five hundred signifies much; and its tenth part, or fifty, relatively some thing, is evident from the Lord's words to Simon in Luke:--
Jesus said, A certain creditor had two debtors; the one owed five hundred pence, and the other fifty. When they had nothing to pay, he forgave them both; therefore which of them will love him most? Simon answered, He to whom he forgave most. Jesus said, Just so the woman's many sins are forgiven, because she loved much; but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little (Luke 7:41-50).
The Lord employed these numbers because they signified much and something; for He spoke from the Divine, thus by means of significatives according to correspondences; and also in all other places, as when He spoke of the virgins, whom He called ten, and five of them wise, and five foolish. He said ten, because by this number are signified all, that is, of the church; and five, because by this number is signified some part (AC 4637, 4638).
from AC 10253
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|Author: E. Swedenborg (1688-1772).||Design: I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002.||www.BibleMeanings.info|