Spiritual Meaning of

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That the Jordan denotes initiation into the knowledges of good and truth, is because it was a boundary of the land of Canaan. That all the boundaries of that land signified things that are first and last of the Lord's kingdom, and those also that are first and last of His church, and thus those that are first and last of the celestial and spiritual things which constitute His kingdom and His church, may be seen above (AC 1585, 1866, 4116, 4240). Hence the Jordan, because it was a boundary, signified initiation into the knowledges of good and truth, for these are first; and at last, when the man becomes a church, or a kingdom of the Lord, they become last.

[3] That the Jordan signifies these things is also evident from other passages in the Word, as in David:--

O my God, my soul is bowed down upon me, therefore will I remember thee from the land of Jordan and of the Hermons, from the mountain of littleness (Ps. 42:6);

to remember from the land of Jordan denotes from what is last, thus from what is low. Again:

Judah became His sanctuary, Israel His dominion; the sea saw it and fled, Jordan turned itself away backwards (Ps. 114:2, 3, 5);

where Judah denotes the good of celestial love, and Israel the good of spiritual love (AC 3654); the sea denotes the knowledges of truth (AC 28); Jordan the knowledges of good, which are said to turn themselves backwards when the good of love obtains the dominion; for then knowledges are regarded from this good, but not good from them-according to what has been often shown above.

[4] In the book of Judges:--

Gilead dwelleth in the passage of the Jordan, and Dan why shall be fear ships? (Judges 5:17);

Gilead denotes sensuous good, or pleasure, by which man is first initiated when being regenerated (AC 4117, 4124); to dwell in the passage of the Jordan denotes in those things which are for initiation, and which are thus the first and the last of the church and kingdom of the Lord. These were also represented by the Jordan when the sons of Israel entered into the land of Canaan (Josh. 3:14-17; 4:1-24). For by the land of Canaan was represented the kingdom of the Lord (AC 1413, 1437, 1607, 3038, 3481, 3686, 3705). And by the Jordan's being divided, and their passing over on dry ground, was signified the removal of evils and falsities, and the admission of those who are in goods and truths. Similar is the meaning of the waters of the Jordan being divided by Elijah when he was taken up into heaven (2 Kings 2:8); and by Elisha when he entered upon the prophetic office in Elijah's place (2 Kings 2:14).

[5] Naaman's being healed of his leprosy by washing himself seven times in the Jordan according to the command of Elisha (2 Kings 5:1-14), represented baptism; for baptism signifies initiation into the church and into those things which are of the church; thus regeneration and the things of regeneration. Not that anyone is regenerated by baptism, but that this is the sign of it, which he should remember. And as the things of the church are signified by baptism, and the same by the Jordan, as stated above, the people were therefore baptized in the Jordan by John (Matt. 3:6; Mark 1:5). And the Lord also willed to be Himself baptized in it by John (Matt. 3:13-17; Mark 1:9).

[6] Because the Jordan signifies the things which are first and last of the Lord's kingdom and church, such as the knowledges of good and truth (for by these man is introduced), the Jordan is also mentioned as a boundary of the New Earth or Holy Land, in (Ezekiel 47:18). That the New Earth or Holy Land is the Lord's kingdom, and also the New Church, which is the Lord's kingdom on the earth, may be seen above (AC 1733, 1850, 2117, 2118, 3355).

from AC 4255

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