Page:A Compendium of the Theological Writings of Emanuel Swedenborg.djvu/246

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

in consequence drive the angels of the Lord away from themselves. Remains, as has been said, are all things of innocence; all things of charity, all things of mercy, and all things of the truth of faith, which man from infancy has had from the Lord, and has learned. Each and all of these are carefully stored up; for if man were not in possession of them there could never be anything of innocence, of charity, and of mercy in his thoughts and actions, and of course nothing of good and of truth, and consequently he would be worse than the wild beasts. So, if he have remains of such things, and by filthy lusts and direful persuasions of falsity should stop the way against them so that they could not operate. Such were the antediluvians who destroyed themselves, who are meant by "all flesh wherein is the breath of lives under the heavens."

"Everything that is in the earth shall die" signifies those who were of that church and had become of such a character. That the earth does not mean the whole terrestrial globe, but only those who were of the church, was shown above. Therefore no flood is here meant, much less a universal flood, but only the extinction or suffocation of those who were of the church, when they were separated from remains and therefore from intellections of truth and volitions of good, and consequently from the heavens. (A. C. n. 660-662.)

"All the fountains of the great deep were broken up" signifies the extreme of temptation as to things of the will. . . . The deep in ancient times signified hell, and fantasies and false persuasions were likened to waters and streams, as well as to the vapour from them. So also some of the hells actually appear as deeps and as seas. Thence come the evil spirits who devastate and also who tempt man, and the fantasies they infuse and the desires with which they inflame him are like inundations and exhalations from thence; for, as was said, by evil spirits man is conjoined with hell, and by angels with heaven. Such things are therefore signified when all the fountains of the great deep are said to be broken up. That hell is called the deep, and the filthy things thence issuing, streams, appears from Ezekiel: "Thus saith the Lord Jehovah: In the day when he went down to hell I caused to mourn; I covered the deep above him, and I restrained the rivers thereof, and the great waters were stayed" (xxxi. 15). Hell is also called an abyss in John (Rev. ix. 1, 2, 11; xi. 7; xvii. 8; xx. 1, 3).

"The flood-gates of heaven were opened," signifies the extreme of temptation as to things of the understanding, (ib. n. 756, 757.)

"And the waters were strengthened exceedingly exceedingly upon the earth," signifies that false persuasions so increased. This appears from what has been said and shown before respecting