In the bull of Pope Pius IV., dated 13th November, 1564, are the following words: “I embrace and receive each and everything which the most holy council of Trent hath determined and declared concerning Original Sin and Justification.”
The instrumental cause is the sacrament of baptism which is a sacrament of faith, without which no one can ever reach justification. The formal cause is the sole justice of God; not that whereby He is just Himself, but that whereby He makes us just, with which being gifted by Him, we are renewed in the spirit of our mind; and are not only reputed just, but are truly called and are just, each according to his own measure, which the Holy Spirit imparts to everyone as it pleases Him (Sess. vi. chap. 7, 2). (f) That justification is a translation from that state, wherein man is born a son of the first Adam, into a state of grace and adoption of the sons of God by the second Adam, our Saviour Jesus Christ (Sess. vi. chap. 4).
The book from which the following extracts are collected, is called the Formula Concordiae, and was composed by men attached to the Augsburg Confession; and as the pages will be cited where the quotations are to be met with, it is proper to observe, that I have made use of the edition printed at Leipzig in the year 1756.
(a) That a difference is to be observed between the works of the Law, and the works of the Spirit, and that the works which a regenerate person performs with a free and willing mind are not works of the Law, but works of the Spirit, which are the fruits of faith; because they who are born again are not under the Law, but under grace (pp. 589, 590, 721, 722). (b) That good works are the fruits of repentance (p. 12). (c) That the regenerate receive by faith a new life, new affections, and new works, and that these are from faith in repentance (p. 134). (d) That man after conversion and justification begins to be renewed in his mind, and at length in his understanding, and that then his will is not inactive in performing daily exercises of repentance (pp. 582, 673, 700). (e) That we ought to repent as well on account of original sin, as on account of actual sins (p. 321; Appendix, p. 159). (f) That repentance with Christians continues until death, because they have to wrestle with the remains of sin in the flesh throughout life (p. 327). (g) That we must enter upon, and advance more and more in the practice of the Law of the Decalogue (pp. 85, 86). (h) That the regenerate, although delivered from the curse of the Law, ought nevertheless still to exercise themselves in the Divine Law (p. 718). (i) That the regenerate are not without the Law, though not under the Law, for they live according to the Law of the Lord (p. 722). (k) That the Law ought to be considered by the regenerate as a rule of religion (pp. 596, 717; Appendix, p. 156). (l) That the regenerate do good works; not by compulsion, but spontaneously and freely, as though they had received no command, had heard of no threats, and expected no reward (pp. 596, 701). (m) That with them faith is always occupied in some good work, and he who does not thus perform good works, is destitute of true faith, for where there is faith, there are good works (p. 701). (n) That charity and good fruits follow faith and regeneration (pp. 121, 122, 171, 188, 692). (o) Faith and works agree well together, and are inseparably connected; but faith alone lays hold of the blessing without works, and yet it is not alone; hence it is that faith without works is dead (pp. 692, 693). (p) That after man is justified by faith, his faith being then true and alive is operative by charity, for good works always follow justifying faith, and are most certainly discovered with it; thus faith is never alone, but is always accompanied by hope and charity (p. 586). (q) We confess that where good works do not follow faith, in such case it is a false and not a true faith (p. 336). (r) That it is as impossible to separate good works from faith, as heat and light from fire (p. 701). (s) That as the old Adam is always inherent in our very nature, the regenerate have continual need of admonition, doctrine, threatenings, and even of chastisements of the Law, for they are reproved and corrected by the Holy Spirit through the Law (pp. 719, 720, 721). (t) That the regenerate must wrestle with the old Adam, and that the flesh must be kept under by exhortations, threatenings, and stripes, because renovation of life by faith is only begun in the present life (pp. 595, 596, 724). (u) That there remains a perpetual wrestling between the flesh and the spirit, in the elect and truly regenerate (pp. 675, 679). (x) That the reason why Christ promises remission of sins to good works, is, because they follow reconciliation, and also because good fruits must necessarily follow, and because they are the signs of the promise(pp. 116, 117). (y) That saving faith is not in those who have not charity, for charity is the fruit which certainly and necessarily follows true faith (p. 688). (z) That good works are necessary on many accounts, but not as a meritorious cause (pp. 11, 17, 64, 95, 133, 589, 590, 702; Appendix, p. 172). (aa) That a regenerate person ought to cooperate with the Holy Spirit, by the new powers and gifts which he has received, but in a certain way (pp. 582, 583, 674, 675; Appendix, p. 144). (bb) In the Confession of the Churches in the Low Countries, which was received in the Synod of Dort, we read as follows: “Holy faith cannot be inactive in man, for it is a faith working by charity; and works, which proceed from a good root of faith, are good and acceptable before God, like fruits of a good tree; for we are bound by God to good works, but not God to us, inasmuch as it is God that doeth them in us.”
It is proper to observe, that the foregoing extracts are taken from a book called Formula Concordiae, which was composed by men attached to the Augsburg Confession; but that nevertheless the like doctrines concerning justification by faith alone are maintained and taught by the Reformed in England and Holland; wherefore the following treatise is intended for all; see below (n. 17, 18).
There now follows a brief Exposition of the Doctrine of the New Church, which is meant by the New Jerusalem in Revelation (chaps. 21 and 22). This doctrine, which is not only a doctrine of faith, but also of life, will be divided in the work itself into three parts.
THE FIRST PART will treat:
I. Of the Lord God the Saviour, and of the Divine Trinity in Him.
II. Of the Sacred Scripture, and its Two Senses, the Natural and the Spiritual, and of its Holiness thence derived.
III. Of Love to God, and Love towards our Neighbor, and of their Agreement.
IV. Of Faith, and its Conjunction with those Two Loves.
V. The Doctrine of Life from the Commandments of the Decalogue.
VI. Of Reformation and Regeneration.
VII. Of Free-Will, and Man’s Co-operation with the Lord thereby.
VIII. Of Baptism.
IX. Of the Holy Supper.
X. Of Heaven and Hell.
XI. Of Man’s Conjunction therewith, and of the State of Man’s Life after Death according to that Conjunction.
XII. Of Eternal Life.
THE SECOND PART will treat:
I. Of the Consummation of the Age, or End of the present Church.
II. Of the Coming of the Lord.
III. Of the Last Judgment.
IV. Of the New Church, which is the New Jerusalem.
THE THIRD PART will point out the Disagreements between the dogmas of the present church, and those of the New Church. But we will dwell a little upon these now, because it is believed both by the clergy and laity, that the present church is in the light itself of the Gospel and in its truths, which cannot possibly be disproved, overturned, or controverted, not even by an angel if one should descend from heaven: neither does the present church see any otherwise, because it has withdrawn the understanding from faith, and yet has confirmed its dogmas by a kind of sight beneath the understanding, for falsities may there be confirmed even so as to appear like truths; and falsities there confirmed acquire a fallacious light, before which the light of truth appears as thick darkness. For this reason we shall here dwell a little upon this subject, mentioning the disagreements, and illustrating them by brief remarks, that such as have not their understanding closed by a blind faith, may see them as at first in twilight, and afterwards as in morning light, and at length, in the work itself, as in the light of day. The disagreements in general are as follows.
The churches which by the Reformation separated themselves from the Roman Catholic Church, differ in various things; but they all agree in the articles concerning a Trinity of Persons in the Divinity, original sin from Adam, imputation of the merit of Christ, and justification by faith alone.
The churches which by the Reformation separated themselves from the Roman Catholic Church, are from those who call themselves Evangelical and Reformed, likewise Protestants, or from the names of their leaders, Lutherans and Calvinists, among which the church of England holds the middle place. We shall say nothing here of the Greek church, which long ago separated from the Roman Catholic church. That the Protestant churches differ in various things, particularly concerning the Holy Supper, Baptism, election, and the Person of Christ, is known to many; but that they all agree in the articles of a Trinity of Persons in the Divinity, original sin, imputation of the merit of Christ, and justification by faith alone, is not universally known. The reason of this is, because few study into the differences of dogmas among the churches, and consequently the agreements. It is only the clergy that study the dogmas of their church, while the laity rarely enter deeply into them, and consequently into their differences. That nevertheless they agree in the four articles above mentioned, both in their general principles, and in most of the particulars, will appear evident to anyone if he will consult their books, or attend to their sermons. This, however, is premised and brought to the attention, on account of what follows.
The Roman Catholics, before the Reformation, taught exactly the same things as the Reformed did after it, concerning the four articles above mentioned, namely, a Trinity of Persons in the Divinity, original sin, the imputation of the merit of Christ, and justification by faith therein, only with this difference, that they conjoined that faith with charity or good works.
That there is such a conformity between the Roman Catholics and the Protestants in these four articles, so that there is scarcely any important difference, except that the former conjoin faith and charity, while the latter divide between them, is scarcely known to anyone, and indeed is so unknown, that the learned themselves will wonder at the assertion. The reason of this ignorance is, because the Roman Catholics rarely approach God our Saviour, but instead of Him, the Pope as His vicar, and likewise the saints; hence they have deeply buried in oblivion their dogmas concerning the imputation of the merit of Christ, and justification by faith. Nevertheless that these dogmas are received and acknowledged by them, evidently appears from the decrees of the Council of Trent, quoted above (n. 3-8) and confirmed by Pope Pius IV. (n. 2). If these be compared with the dogmas extracted from the Augsburg Confession, and from the Formula Concordiae thence derived (n. 9-12), the difference between them will be found to be more verbal than real. The doctors of the church, by reading and comparing the above passages together, may indeed see some conformity between them, but still rather obscurely; that these, therefore, as well as those who are less learned, and also the laity, may see this, the subject shall be more clearly illustrated in what follows.
The leading reformers, Luther, Melancthon, and Calvin, retained all the dogmas concerning a Trinity of Persons in the Divinity, original sin, imputation of the merit of Christ, and justification by faith, just as they were and had been with the Roman Catholics; but they separated charity or good works from that faith, and declared that they were not at the same time saving, with a view to be totally severed from the Roman Catholics as to the very essentials of the church, which are faith and charity.
That the four articles above mentioned, as at present taught in the churches of the Reformed were not new, and first broached by those three leaders, but were handed down from the time of the Council of Nice, and taught by the writers after that period, and thus preserved in the Roman Catholic church, is evident from the books of ecclesiastical history. The reason why the Roman Catholics and the Reformed agree in the article of a Trinity of Persons in the Divinity, is, because they both acknowledge the three creeds, the Apostles’, the Nicene, and the Athanasian, in which a Trinity is taught That they agree in the article of the imputation of the merit of Christ, is evident from the extracts from the Council of Trent (n. 3-8) compared with those from The Formula Concordiae (n. 10-15). Their agreement in the article of justification shall now be the subject of discussion.
Nevertheless the leading reformers adjoined good works, and also conjoined them, to their faith, but in man as a passive subject: whereas the Roman Catholics conjoin them in man as an active subject; and that notwithstanding this, there is actually a conformity between the one and the other as to faith, works, and merits.
That the leading reformers, although they separated faith and charity, still adjoined and even conjoined them, but would not admit of their being united into one, so as to be both together saving, is evident from their books, sermons, and declarations; for after they have separated them, they conjoin them, and even express this conjunction in clear terms, and not in such as admit of two senses; as for instance in the following. That faith after justification is never alone, but is accompanied by charity or good works, and if not, that faith is not living but dead, see above [n. 13 (o) (p) (q) (r) (y) (bb)]. Yea that good works necessarily follow faith [n. 13 (x) (y) (z)]. Then that the regenerate person, by new powers and gifts, cooperates with the Holy Spirit [n. 13 (aa)]. That the Roman Catholics teach exactly the same is plain from the passages collected from the Council of Trent (n. 4-8).
The whole system of Theology in the Christian world, at this day, is founded on an idea of Three Gods, arising from the doctrine of a Trinity of Persons.
We will first say something concerning the origin or source from whence the idea of a Trinity of Persons in the Divinity, and thereby of three Gods, proceeded. There are three Creeds, which are called the Apostles’, the Nicene, and the Athanasian, which specifically teach a Trinity: the Apostles’ and the Nicene assert simply a Trinity, but the Athanasian a Trinity of Persons. These three Creeds are to be met with in many Psalters, the Apostles’ Creed next the Psalm which is sung, the Nicene after the Decalogue, and the Athanasian apart by itself.* The Apostles’ Creed was written after the times of the Apostles; the Nicene Creed at the Council of Nice, a city of Bithynia, to which all the bishops in Asia, Africa, and Europe, were summoned by the Emperor Constantine, in the year 325**; but the Athanasian Creed was composed since that council by one or more persons, with an intent utterly to overthrow the Arians and was afterwards received by the churches as oecumenical. In the two former creeds the confession of a Trinity was evident, but from the third or Athanasian Creed the profession of a Trinity of Persons was spread abroad: that hence arose the idea of three Gods, shall now be shown.
* This relates to the Protestant churches on the continent of Europe.
** The original Latin has “anno 318,” in the year 318. There were 318 bishops in attendance; the Council met in the year 325.
Jesus said, go make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit (chap. 28:19).
And from these words in the same:
When Jesus was baptized, lo, the heavens were opened unto Him, and He saw the Holy Spirit descending like a dove, and coming upon Him, and lo, a voice from heaven, this is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased (chap. 3:16, 17).
The reason why the Lord sent His disciples to baptize in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, was, because in Him then glorified there was the Divine Trinity; for in the preceding verse 18, He says:
All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth.
And in the 20th verse following:
Lo, I am with you all the days, even unto the consummation of the age.
Thus He spoke of Himself alone, and not of three. And in John:
The Holy Spirit was not yet, because Jesus was not yet glorified (chap. 7:39).
The former words He uttered after His glorification, and His glorification was His complete unition with His Father, Who was the Divine itself in Him from conception; and the Holy Spirit was the Divine proceeding from Him glorified (John 20:22).
The Father is God and Lord, the Son is God and Lord, and the Holy Spirit is God and Lord”; but more especially by these: “For like as we are compelled by the Christian verity to acknowledge every Person by Himself to be God and Lord, so are we forbidden by the Catholic religion to say there be three Gods or three Lords”; the result of which words is this, that by the Christian verity we are bound to confess and acknowledge three Gods and three Lords, but by the Catholic religion we are not allowed to say, or to name three Gods and Lords; consequently we may have an idea of three Gods and Lords, but not an oral confession of them. Nevertheless, that the doctrine of the Trinity in the Athanasian Creed is agreeable to the truth, if only instead of a Trinity of Persons there be substituted a Trinity of Person, which Trinity is in God the Saviour Jesus Christ, may be seen in The Doctrine of the New Jerusalem concerning the Lord, published at Amsterdam, in the year 1763 (n. 55-61.)
Am not I Jehovah, and there is no God else beside Me, a just God and a Saviour, there is none beside Me (Isa. 45:21, 22).
I Jehovah am thy God, and thou shalt acknowledge no God beside Me, and there is no Saviour beside Me (Hos. 13:4). Thus said Jehovah the King of Israel and his Redeemer, Jehovah of Hosts, I am the First and the Last, and beside Me there is no God (Isa. 46:6).
Jehovah of Hosts is His name, and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel, the God of the whole earth shall He be called (Isa. 54:5).
In that day Jehovah shall be King over the whole earth; in that day there shall be one Jehovah, and His name One (Zech. 14:9).
Beside many more passages elsewhere.
The dogmas of that theology appear to be erroneous, after the idea of a Trinity of Persons, and thence of three Gods, has been rejected, and the idea of One God, in whom is the Divine Trinity, is received in its stead.
The reason why the dogmas of the present church, which are founded upon the idea of three Gods, derived from the doctrine of a Trinity of Persons literally understood, appear erroneous, after the idea of one God, in whom is the Divine Trinity, has been received in its stead, is, because, till this truth is received, we cannot see what is erroneous. The case herein is like a person, who in the night time, by the light of some stars only, sees various objects, especially images, and believes them to be living men; or like one, who in the twilight before sunrise, as he lies in his bed, fancies he sees specters in the air, and believes them to be angels; or like a person, who sees many things in the delusive light of fantasy, and believes them to be real; such things, it is known, do not appear according to their true qualities, until the person comes into the light of the day, that is, until he comes into the light of the understanding awake. The case is the same with the spiritual things of the church, which have been erroneously and falsely perceived, and also confirmed, when genuine truths also present themselves to be seen in their own light, which is the light of heaven. Who is there that cannot understand, that all dogmas founded on the idea of three Gods, must be interiorly erroneous and false? I say interiorly, because the idea of God enters into all things of the church, religion, and worship; and theological matters have their residence above all others in the human mind, and the idea of God is in the supreme place there; wherefore if this be false, all beneath it, in consequence of the principle from whence they flow, must likewise be false or falsified; for that which is supreme, being also the inmost, constitutes the very essence of all that is derived from it; and the essence, like a soul, forms them into a body, after its own image; and when in its descent it lights upon truths, it even infects them with its own blemish and error. The idea of three Gods in theology may be compared to a disease seated in the heart or lungs, in which the patient fancies himself to be in health, because his physician, not knowing his disease, persuades him that he is so; but if the physician knows it, and still persuades, he may justly be charged with deep malignity.
Then truly saving faith, which is faith in one God, united, with good works, is acknowledged and received.
The reason why this faith, which is a faith in one God, is acknowledged and received as truly saving, when the former faith, which is a faith in three gods, is rejected, is because till this is the case it cannot be seen in its own form; for the faith of the present day is set forth as the only saving faith, because it is a faith in one God, and a faith in the Savior; but still there are two faces of that faith, the one internal and the other external; its internal face is formed from the perception of three Gods, for who perceives or thinks otherwise? let every one consult himself; but its external face is formed from the confession of one God, for who confesses or speaks otherwise? let every one consult himself. These two faces are altogether discordant with each other; so that the external is not acknowledged by the internal, nor is the internal known by the external. From this disagreement, and the vanishing of the one out of sight of the other, a confused idea of things pertaining to salvation has been conceived and brought forth in the church. It is otherwise when the internal and external faces agree together, and mutually regard and acknowledge each other as one unanimous thing; that this is the case, when one God, in whom is the Divine Trinity, is not only perceived by the mind, but is likewise acknowledged by the mouth, is self-evident. That the dogma of the Father’s being alienated from mankind, is then abolished, and thence also that of His reconciliation; and that an altogether different doctrine goes forth concerning imputation, remission of sins, regeneration, and salvation thence derived, will clearly be seen in the work itself, in the light of reason illustrated by Divine truths from the Sacred Scripture. This faith is called a faith united with good works, because faith in one God without union with good works is not given.
And this faith is in God the Savior Jesus Christ which in its simple form is as follows: I. That there is One God in Whom is the Divine Trinity, and He is the Lord Jesus Christ. II. Saving Faith is to believe in Him. III. Evils ought to be shunned, because they are of the devil, and from the devil. IV. Goods ought to be done, because they are of God, and from God. V. And they ought to be done by man as of himself, but it is to be believed that they are from the Lord, with him and through him.
This is the faith of the New Church in its simple form, which will appear more fully in the Appendix, and in its full form in the work itself, in its First Part; where we shall treat of the Lord God the Saviour, and of the Trinity in Him; of love to God, and love towards the neighbor; of faith and its conjunction with those two loves; and also in the other parts, which will follow in order there. But it is necessary that this preliminary concerning that faith should here be briefly illustrated. Its first, namely, That there is one God, in whom there is the Divine Trinity, and He is the Lord Jesus Christ, is summarily illustrated in the following manner. It is a certain and established truth, that God is one, and His essence is indivisible, and that there is a Trinity; since, therefore, God is One, and His essence is indivisible, it follows, that God is one Person, and when He is one Person, that the Trinity is in that Person. That this is the Lord Jesus Christ, appears from this, that He was conceived from God the Father (Luke 1:34, 35); and thus as to His soul and life itself He is God; and therefore, as He Himself said, that:
The Father and He are One (John 10:30).
He is in the Father, and the Father in Him (John 14:10, 11).
He who seeth Him and knoweth Him, seeth and knoweth the Father (John 14:7, 9).
No one seeth and knoweth the Father, but He who is in the bosom of the Father (John 1:18).
All things of the Father are His (John 3:35; 16:15).
He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life, and no one cometh unto the Father but by Him (John 14:6);
thus from Him, because He is in Him, and thus is He Himself; and according to Paul that:
All the fulness of the Divinity dwells in Him bodily (Col. 2:9).
And according to Isaiah:
Unto us a Boy is born, unto us a Son is given, whose name is God, Father of Eternity (9:5).
And again, that:
He hath power over all flesh (John 17:2).
He hath all power in heaven and on earth (Matt. 28:18).
Thence it follows that He is the God of heaven and earth.
Second, That saving faith is to believe in Him, is illustrated by these:
Jesus said, he that believeth in Me, shall not die to eternity, but shall live (John 11:25, 26).
This is the will of the Father, that everyone who believeth in the Son may have eternal life (John 6:40).
God so loved the world, that He gave His Only-begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him, should not perish, but have eternal life (John 3:15, 16).
He that believeth in the Son, hath eternal life, but he that believeth not the Son, shall not see life, but the wrath of God abideth on him (John 3:36).
The three remaining propositions, namely, That evils ought to be shunned, because they are of the devil and from the devil; and that goods ought to be done, because they are of God and from God; but that it is to be believed that they are from the Lord, with him and through him. There is no need to illustrate and demonstrate these; for the whole Sacred Scripture, from beginning to end, proves them, and, in short, teaches nothing else but to shun evils, and do goods, and to believe in the Lord God. Besides, without these three there is not any religion, for religion is of the life; and life is to shun evils and do goods, and man cannot do goods and shun evils except as of himself. Wherefore if these three are removed from the church, the Sacred Scripture, together with religion, is likewise removed at the same time: which being removed the church is not a church. For a further account of the faith of the New Church, in its universal and particular form, see below (n. 116, 117); all which will be demonstrated in the work itself.
The faith of the present day has separated religion from the church, since religion consists in the acknowledgment of One God, and in the worship of Him from the faith of charity.
What nation is there in the whole world, which has religion and sound reason, that does not know and believe, that there is one God, and that to do evils is contrary to Him, and that to do goods is with Him, and that man must do this from his soul, from his heart, and from his strength, although they inflow from God, and that herein religion consists? Who therefore does not see, that to confess three Persons in the Divinity, and to declare that in good works there is nothing of salvation, is to separate religion from the church? For it is declared that in good works there is not salvation, in these words: That faith justifies without good works [n. 12 (a) (b)]; that works are not necessary to salvation, nor to faith, because salvation and faith are neither preserved nor retained by good works [n. 12 (g) (h) (m) (n)]; consequently, that there is no bond of conjunction between faith and good works. It is indeed said afterwards, that good works nevertheless spontaneously follow faith, as fruit is produced from a tree [n. 13 (i) (n)]. But then who does them, yea, who thinks of them, or who is spontaneously led to perform them, while he knows and believes that they contribute nothing to salvation, and also, that no one can do any good thing towards salvation of himself, and so on? If it is said, that still they have conjoined faith with good works; we reply, this conjunction when closely inspected, is not conjunction, but it is mere adjunction, and this only like a superfluous appendage, that neither coheres nor adheres in any other manner than as a dark background to a picture, from which the picture appears more living. And because religion is of the life, and this consists in good works according to the truths of faith, it is evident that religion is the picture itself, and not the mere appendage; yea, with many it is like the tail of a horse, which because it avails nothing, may be cut off at pleasure. Who can rationally conclude otherwise, while he perceives such expressions as these according to their obvious meaning: That it is a folly to dream that the works of the second table of the Decalogue justify before God [n. 12 (d)]; and these: That if any one believes he shall therefore obtain salvation, because he hath charity, he brings reproach upon Christ [n. 12 (e)]; as also these: That good works are utterly to be excluded, in treating of justification and eternal life [n. 12 (f)]; with more to the same purpose? Who, therefore, when he reads afterwards, that good works necessarily follow faith, and that if they do not follow, the faith is a false and not a true faith [n. 13 (p) (q) (y)], with more to the same purpose, attends to it? or if he attends to it, understands whether such good works are attended with any perception? Yet good flowing forth from man without perception is inanimate as if from a statue. But if we inquire more deeply into the rise of this doctrine, it will appear as though the leading reformers first laid down faith alone as their rule, in order that they might be severed from the Roman Catholics, as mentioned above (n. 21, 22, 23); and that afterwards they adjoined thereto the works of charity, that it might not appear to contradict the Sacred Scripture, but have the semblance of religion, and thus be healed.
The faith of the present church cannot be conjoined with charity, and produce any fruits, which are good works.
Before this is demonstrated, we shall first explain the origin and nature of charity, and the origin and nature of faith, and thus the origin and nature of good works, which are called fruits. Faith is truth, wherefore the doctrine of faith is the doctrine of truth; and the doctrine of truth is of the understanding, and thence of the thought, and from this of the speech; wherefore it teaches what we are to will and do, thus that evils and what evils are to be shunned, and that goods and what goods are to be done. When man does goods then goods thence conjoin themselves with truths, because the will is conjoined with the understanding, for good is of the will, and truth is of the understanding; from this conjunction the affection of good exists, which in its essence is charity, and the affection of truth, which in its essence is faith, and these two united together constitute a marriage. From this marriage good works are produced, as fruits from a tree; and hence they are the fruits of good, and the fruits of truth; the latter are signified in the Word by grapes, but the former by olives.
From the faith of the present church there results a worship of the mouth and not of the life, whereas the worship of the mouth is accepted by the Lord according to the worship of the life.
This is testified by experience. How many are there at this day, who live according to the commandments of the Decalogue, and other precepts of the Lord, from religion? And how many are there at this day, who desire to look their own evils in the face, and to perform actual repentance, and thus enter upon the worship of the life? And who among those that cultivate piety, perform any other repentance than oral and oratorical, confessing themselves to be sinners, and praying, according to the doctrine of the church, that God the Father, for the sake of His Son, who suffered upon the cross for their sins, took away their damnation, and atoned for them with His blood, would mercifully forgive their transgressions, that so they might be presented without spot or blemish before the throne of His judgment? Who does not see, that this worship is of the lungs only, and not of the heart, consequently that it is external worship, and not internal? for he prays for the remission of sins, when yet he does not know one sin with himself; and if he did know of any, he would cover it over with favor and indulgence, or with a faith that is to purify and absolve him, without any works of his. But this is comparatively like a servant going to his master with his face and clothes defiled with soot and filth, and saying, Sir, wash me. Would not his master say to him, Thou foolish servant, what is it thou sayest? See! there is water, soap, and a towel, hast thou not hands, and ability to use them? wash thyself. Thus also the Lord God will say, The means of purification are from Me, and from Me also thou hast will and power, wherefore use these My gifts and talents, as thy own, and thou shalt be purified. Take another example by way of illustration. Suppose you should pray a thousand times at home and in temples, that God the Father, for the sake of His Son, would preserve you from the devil, and should not at the same time, from the freedom in which you are perpetually held by the Lord, keep yourself from evil, and so from the devil; you could not in this case be preserved even by legions of angels sent from the Lord; for the Lord cannot act contrary to His own Divine order, and His order is that man should examine himself, see his evils, resist them, and this as of himself, yet from the Lord. This does not indeed at this day appear to be the Gospel, nevertheless it is the Gospel, for the Gospel is salvation by the Lord. The reason why the worship of the mouth is accepted by the Lord according to the worship of the life, is because the speech of man before God, and before angels, has its sound from the affection of his love and faith, and these two are in man according to his life; wherefore, if the love of God and faith in Him are in your life, the sound of your voice will be like that of a dove; but if self-love and self-confidence are in your life, the sound of your voice will be like that of an owl, howsoever you may bend your voice to imitate the voice of a turtle-dove. The spiritual, which is within the sound, effects this.
The doctrine of the present church is interwoven with many paradoxes, which are to be embraced by faith; and therefore its dogmas gain admission into the memory only, and not into any part of the understanding above the memory, but merely into confirmations below it.
The rulers of the church insist, that the understanding is to be kept under obedience to faith, yea that faith, properly speaking, is a faith in what is unknown, which is blind, or a faith of the night. This is the first paradox; for faith is of truth, and truth is of faith; and truth, before it can become an object of faith, should be in its own light and be seen; otherwise what is false may be believed. The paradoxes flowing from such a faith are many; as that God the Father begat a Son from eternity, and that the Holy Spirit proceeds from both: and that each is a Person by Himself, and God; that the Lord both as to His soul and body, is from the mother; that those three Persons, consequently three Gods, created the universe; and that one of them descended, and assumed the Human, to reconcile the Father, and thus to save men; and that they who by grace obtain faith, and believe these paradoxes, are saved by the imputation, application, and translation of His justice to themselves; and that man, at his first reception of that faith, is like a statue, a stock, or a stone, and that faith inflows by the mere hearing of the Word; and that faith alone without the works of the law, and not formed from charity, is saving; and that it produces the remission of sins without any previous repentance; and that, merely by virtue of such remission of sins, the impenitent are justified, regenerated, and sanctified; and that afterwards charity, good works, and repentance, spontaneously follow. Besides many similar things, which, like offspring from an illegitimate bed, have all issued from the doctrine founded on the idea of three Gods.
The Word was with God, and God was the Word, and the Word became flesh (John 1:1, 14).
And also the following in the same:
I went forth from the Father, and came into the world; again I leave the world and go to the Father (John 16:28, 29).
Hence also it is evident, that without the coming of the Lord into the world, no mortal could have been saved, and they are saved who believe in Him, and live well. This face of faith presents itself as clear as the day to those who are enlightened by the Word, and it is the face of the faith of the New Church. See the FAITH OF THE NEW HEAVEN AND OF THE NEW CHURCH IN ITS UNIVERSAL AND IN ITS PARTICULAR FORM, below (n. 116, 117).
The dogmas of the present church cannot be learned and retained without great difficulty, nor can they be preached or taught without using great care and caution to conceal their nakedness, because true reason neither perceives nor receives them.
That the understanding is to be kept under obedience to faith, is set as a motto before the dogmas of the present church, to denote that their interiors are mysteries, or arcana, which, because they transcend, cannot flow into the superior region of the understanding, and be there perceived, see above (n. 54). Those ministers of the church who are ambitious to be eminent for their reputation of wisdom, and wish to be looked upon as oracles in spiritual things, imbibe and swallow down in the schools, such things especially as surpass the comprehension of others, which they do with avidity, but nevertheless with difficulty. And because they are thence accounted wise, and they who have distinguished and enriched themselves from such hidden stores are honored with doctors’ caps and episcopal robes, they revolve in their thoughts, and teach from their pulpits, scarce anything else but mysteries concerning justification by faith alone, and good works as her humble attendants.
And from their erudition concerning both faith and good works, they in a wonderful manner sometimes separate them, and sometimes conjoin them; comparatively as if they held faith by itself in one hand, and the works of charity in the other, and at one time extend their arms and so separate them, and at another time bring their hands together and so conjoin them.
But this shall be illustrated by examples. They teach, that good works are not necessary to salvation, because if done by man they are meritorious; at the same time they also teach, that good works necessarily follow faith, and that both together make one in the article of salvation. They teach that faith without good works, as being alive, justifies; and at the same time, that faith without good works, as being dead, does not justify. They teach, that faith is neither preserved nor retained by good works; and at the same time, that good works proceed from faith, as fruit from a tree, light from the sun, and heat from fire. They teach, that good works being adjoined to faith make it perfect; and at the same time, that being conjoined as in a marriage, or in one form, they deprive faith of its saving essence. They teach, that a Christian is not under the law; and at the same time, that he must be in the daily practice of the law. They teach, that if good works are intermixed in the business of salvation by faith, as in the remission of sins, justification, regeneration, vivification, and salvation, they are hurtful; but if not intermixed, that they are profitable. They teach, that God crowns His own gifts, which are good works, with rewards also spiritual, but not with salvation and eternal life, because faith without works, they say, is entitled to the crown of eternal life. They teach, that faith alone is like a queen, who walks in a stately manner with good works as her train of attendants behind her; but if these join themselves to her in front, and kiss her, she is cast from her throne and called an adulteress. But particularly, when they teach faith and good works at the same time, they view merit on the one hand, and no merit on the other, making choice of expressions which they use in two different senses; one for the laity, and the other for the clergy; for the laity, that its nakedness may not appear, and for the clergy, that it may. Consider now, whether anyone hearing such things can draw from them any doctrine leading to salvation, or whether he will not rather, from the apparent contradictions therein, become blind, and afterwards grope for the objects of salvation, like one walking in the dark. Who in this case can tell from the evidence of works, whether he has any faith or not; and whether it is better to omit good works on account of the danger of merit, or to do them for fear of the loss of faith? But do you, my friend, tear yourself away from such contradictions, and shun evils as sins, and do goods, and believe in the Lord, and saving justification will be given you.
The doctrine of the faith of the present church ascribes to God human properties; as, that He regards man from anger, that He wished to be reconciled, that He is reconciled through the love He bore toward the Son, and by His intercession; and that He wished to be appeased by the sight of His Son’s sufferings, and thus to be brought back to mercy; and that He imputes the justice of His Son to an unjust man who supplicates it from faith alone; and that thus from an enemy He makes him a friend, and from a child of wrath, a child of grace.
Who does not know that God is mercy and clemency itself, because He is love itself, and good itself, and that these are His esse or essence? And who does not thence see, that it is a contradiction to say, that mercy itself, or good itself, can look at man from anger, become his enemy, turn Himself away from him, and determine on his damnation, and still continue to be the same Divine esse or God? Such things can scarcely be attributed to an upright man, but only to a wicked man, nor to an angel of heaven, but only to an angel of hell; wherefore it is heinous to ascribe them to God. That they have been ascribed to Him, appears evident from the declarations of many fathers, councils, and churches, from the first ages to the present day; and also from the inferences which have necessarily followed from first principles into their derivatives, or from causes into their effects, as from a head into the members; such as, that He wishes to be reconciled; that He is reconciled through love to the Son, and through His intercession and mediation; that He wishes to be appeased by the view of the extreme sufferings of His Son, and so to be brought back and as it were compelled to mercy, and thus from an enemy to be made a friend, and to adopt those who were the sons of wrath as the sons of grace. That to impute the justice and merits of His Son to an unjust man, who supplicates it from faith alone, is also merely human, will be seen in the last analysis of this little work.
He is the true light which enlighteneth every man (John 1:9).
He also says:
I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth in Me, may not abide in darkness (John 12:46).
And this light, and the perception thence derived, inflows with those who acknowledge Him as the God of heaven and earth and approach Him alone, and not with those who cherish an idea of three Gods, which has been the case from the time the Christian church began to be established. This idea of three Gods, being a merely natural idea, receives no other light than natural, and cannot be opened to the afflux and reception of spiritual light; hence it is, that they have seen no other properties in God, than natural. Furthermore, had they seen how incongruous these human properties are to the Divine essence, and had they removed them from the article of justification, they must then have entirely departed from the religion, which from the beginning was founded on the worship of three Gods, before the time appointed for the New Church, when the fullness and restoration will take place.
From the faith of the present church have been produced, and still may be produced, monstrous births; such as instantaneous salvation from immediate mercy; predestination; the notion that God pays no attention to the actions of man, but to faith alone; that there is no connection between charity and faith; that man in conversion is like a stock, with many more heresies of the same kind; likewise concerning the Sacraments of Baptism and the Holy Supper, as to the advantages reasonably to be expected from them, when considered according to the doctrine of justification by faith alone; as also with regard to the Person of Christ. The heresies from the first ages to the present day, have sprung up from no other source than from the doctrine founded on the idea of three Gods.
That no other salvation is believed at this day, than instantaneous salvation from immediate mercy, is evident from this, that an oral faith alone, at the same time a confidence of the lungs, and not with charity at the same time, whereby oral faith becomes real, and the confidence of the lungs becomes that of the heart, is believed to complete all the work of salvation; for if the cooperation is taken away, which is effected through the exercises of charity by man as of himself, the spontaneous cooperation which is said to follow faith of itself, becomes passive action, which is a frivolous expression. For what need would there then be of anything more than this instantaneous and immediate prayer, “Save me, O God, for the sake of the sufferings of Thy Son, who hath washed me from my sins in His own blood, and presents me pure, just, and holy, before Thy throne”? And this ejaculation of the mouth might avail even at the hour of death, if not sooner, as a seed of justification. That nevertheless instantaneous salvation, from immediate mercy, is at this day a fiery flying serpent in the church, and that by it religion is abolished, security induced, and damnation imputed to the Lord, may be seen in the work concerning The Divine Providence, published at Amsterdam in the year 1764 (n. 340).
“Who cannot see, that every man has freedom to think about God, or not to think about Him, consequently that every man has the same freedom in spiritual things, as he has in civil and moral things. The Lord gives this freedom continually to all: wherefore man becomes guilty or not guilty as he thinks. Man is man by virtue of this power, whereas a beast is a beast in consequence of its not possessing such a power; so that man is capable of reforming and regenerating himself as of himself, provided he only acknowledge in his heart that his ability is from the Lord. Every man who does the work of repentance, is reformed and regenerated. Both must be done by man as of himself, but this as of himself is also from the Lord, because the Lord gives both the power to will and perform, and never takes it away from anyone. It is true that man cannot contribute anything thereunto, nevertheless he is not created a statue, but a man, to do the work of repentance from the Lord as from himself. In this alone consists the reciprocality of love and faith, and of conjunction thereby, which the Lord altogether wills to be done by man from Him. In a word, act of yourselves, and believe that it is from the Lord, for thus you will act as of yourselves.
“But the power so to act is not implanted in man by creation, because to act of himself is the Lord’s alone, but it is given continually; and in this case in proportion as man does good and learns truth as of himself, he is an angel of heaven; but in proportion as he does evil, and thence confirms falsity, which also is done as of himself, in the same proportion he is a spirit of hell. That in this latter case also man acts as of himself, is evident from his prayers, as when he prays that he may be preserved from the devil, lest he should seduce him, and bring his own evils upon him. Everyone, however, contracts guilt, who believes that he does of himself either good or evil; but not he who believes that he acts as of himself. For whatsoever a man believes that he does of himself, that he appropriates to himself; if he believes that he does good of himself, he appropriates to himself that good, and makes it his own, when nevertheless it is of God and from God; and if he believes that he does evil of himself, he also appropriates that evil to himself, and makes it his own, when yet it is of the devil and from the devil.”
That many other false dogmas, even concerning the sacraments of Baptism and the Holy Supper, as to the benefits reasonably to be expected from them, when considered according to the doctrine of justification by faith alone; as likewise concerning the Person of Christ; together with all the heresies from the first ages down to the present day; have flowed from no other source, than from a doctrine founded on the idea of three Gods. This we have not room to demonstrate within the limits of this epitome; but it will be shown and proved at large in the work itself.
The last state of the present church, when it is at its end, is meant by the consummation of the age, and then the coming of the Lord (Matt. 24:3).
We read in Matthew:
The disciples came to Jesus, and showed Him the buildings of the temple; and Jesus said unto them, Verily, I say unto you, there shall not be left here one stone upon another, which shall not be thrown down. And the disciples said unto Him, tell us when these things shall be, especially what shall be the sign of Thy coming, and of the consummation of the age (Matt. 24:1-3).
At this day the learned clergy and laity understand by the destruction of the temple, its destruction by Vespasian, and by the coming of the Lord, and the consummation of the age, they understand the end and destruction of the world. But by the destruction of the temple is not only meant the destruction thereof by the Romans, but likewise the destruction of the present church; and by the consummation of the age, and the coming of the Lord at that time, is meant the end of the present church and the establishment of a New Church by the Lord.
That these things are there meant, is evident from the whole of that chapter from beginning to end, which treats solely of the successive decline and corruption of the Christian church, even to its destruction, when it is at an end. That by “the temple,” in a limited sense is meant the temple at Jerusalem; in a wide sense the church of the Lord; in a wider sense the angelic heaven; and, in the widest sense, the Lord as to His Human may be seen in The Apocalypse Revealed (n. 529). That by “the consummation of the age” is meant the end of the church, which comes to pass when there does not remain any truth of doctrine from the Word that is not falsified, and thus consummated (n. 658, 676, 750, of the same work). That by “the coming of the Lord” is meant His coming in the Word, and at the same time the establishment of a New Church instead of the former consummated one, evidently appears from His own words in the same chapter, from verse 30 to 34; as likewise from the last two chapters, 21 and 22, of Revelation, where also are these words:
I, Jesus, am the Root and the Offspring of David, the bright and morning Star. And the Spirit and the Bride say, Come; and let him that heareth say, Come; and him that thirsteth let him come. Yea, I come quickly: Amen, even so come, Lord Jesus (Rev. 22:16-17, 20).
The reason why it has been hitherto unknown that by “the consummation of the age” is meant the end of the church, is because when falsities are taught, and when the doctrine resulting from them is believed and honored as orthodox, then it cannot possibly be known that the church is to be brought to a consummation, for falsities are regarded as truths, and truths as falsities, and then the falsity explodes the truth and blackens it, like ink poured into clear water, or soot thrown upon white paper. For it is believed, and the most learned of the present age proclaim it, that they are in the clearest light of the Gospel, although as to the whole face they are in thick darkness; thus the white speck has covered over the pupils of their eyes.
Then shall appear the sign of the Son of man, and then shall all the tribes of the earth wail; and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and glory. And He shall send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together His elect from one end of the heavens to the other end thereof (Matt. 24:30, 31; Mark 13:26, 27; Luke 21:27).
It is known that these things were neither seen nor heard at the destruction of Jerusalem, and that it is believed at this day, that they will come to pass at the time of the Last Judgment. We likewise read of similar things in Revelation, which from beginning to end treats solely of the last state of the church, where are these words:
Behold, Jesus Christ cometh in the clouds, and all the tribes of the earth shall wail because of Him (1:5, 7).
The particular explanation of these words may be seen in The Apocalypse Revealed (n. 24-28); also what is signified by “the tribes of the earth,” and their “wailing” (n. 27, 348, 349).
The infestation from falsities, and thence the consummation of every truth, or the desolation, which at this day prevails in the Christian churches, is meant by “the great affliction, such as was not from the beginning of the world, nor ever shall be” (Matt. 24:21).
That the successive decline and corruption of the Christian church is foretold and described by the Lord in Matt. 24 may be seen above (n. 73). After having spoken of false prophets that should arise, and of the abomination of desolation wrought by them (verses 11, 15), He says:
Then shall be great affliction, such as was not from the beginning of the world until now, nor ever shall be (verse 21).
Whence it is evident, that by “great affliction,” in this as well as in other places throughout the Word, is meant the infestation of truth by falsities, until there remains no genuine truth derived from the Word which is not falsified, and thus consummated. This has come to pass, because the churches have not acknowledged the Unity of God in the Trinity, and His Trinity in Unity, in one Person, but in three, and hence have founded a church in the mind upon the idea of three Gods, and in the mouth upon the confession of one God; for by this means they have separated themselves from the Lord, and at length to such a degree, that they have no idea left of the Divinity in His Human nature (see The Apocalypse Revealed n. 294), when nevertheless the Lord as to His Human is the Divine truth itself, and the Divine light itself, as He fully teaches in the Word; hence is the great affliction at the present day. That this has been principally brought on by the doctrine of justification and imputation through the means of faith alone, will be shown in the following pages.
The black horse and the pale horse going forth from the book, the seals whereof the Lamb had opened (6:5-8).
By the beast ascending out of the abyss, which made war against the two witnesses, and slew them (11:7 seq.).
As also by:
The dragon which stood before the woman who was ready to be delivered, in order to devour her offspring, and pursued her into the desert, and there cast out of his mouth water as a flood, that he might swallow her up (12).
And likewise by:
The beast out of the sea, the body of which was like that of a leopard, his feet like those of a bear, and his mouth like that of a lion (13:2).
The three unclean spirits like frogs, which came out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet (16:13).
And moreover by these particulars, that:
After the seven angels had poured out the vials of the wrath of God, wherein were the seven last plagues, upon the earth, upon the sea, upon the rivers and fountains, upon the sun, upon the throne of the beast, upon Euphrates, and at length upon the air, there was a great earthquake, such as had not been since men were created upon the earth (16).
“The earthquake” here signifies an inversion of the church, which is effected by falsities and falsifications of truth. The like things are meant by these:
The angel sent in his sickle, and gathered the vineyard of the earth, and cast it into the great winepress of the wrath of God; and the winepress was trodden, and blood came out even unto the horses’ bridles, for a thousand and six hundred stadia (14:19, 20).
There “blood” signifies truth falsified: besides many other things in those seven chapters. But see, if you will, the explanations, and the Relations at the end of the chapters.
There would be neither love, nor faith, nor the knowledges of good and truth, in the last time of the Christian Church, when it draws to an end, is meant by these words: “After the affliction of those days, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken” (Matt. 24:29).
In the prophetic Word, the like things are said of the “sun,” “moon,” and “stars,” as here (Matt. 24:29). Thus in Isaiah:
Behold, the cruel day of Jehovah cometh; the stars of the heavens and the constellations thereof shall not shine with their light, the sun shall be darkened at his rising, and the moon shall not cause her light to shine (13:9, 10).
When I shall put thee out, I will cover the heavens, and make the stars thereof dark; I will cover the sun with a cloud, and the moon shall not cause her light to shine, and I will give darkness upon thy land (32:7, 8).
The day of Jehovah cometh, a day of darkness, the sun and moon shall not cause their light to shine, and the stars shall withdraw their shining (2:1, 2, 10).
In the same:
The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great day of Jehovah cometh (3:4).
The day of Jehovah is near in the valley of decision; the sun and moon are darkened (4:14, 15).
The fourth angel sounded, and the third part of the sun was smitten, and the third part of the stars, and the day shone not for a third part of it (7:12).
And in another place:-
The sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood (6:12).
In all these passages it treats of the last time of the Jewish Church, which was when the Lord came into the world; in like manner here in Matthew and in Revelation, only in reference to the last time of the Christian Church, when the Lord is to come again, but in the Word, which is Himself, and in which He is; wherefore, immediately after those words (Matt. 24:29), it follows:
And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man coming in the clouds of the heavens (verse 30).
By “the sun” in the above passages is meant love; by “the moon” faith; and by “the stars” the knowledges of good and truth; and by “the powers of the heavens” those three as the supports and firmaments of the heavens where the angels are, and of the churches where men are; by the above, therefore, collected into one sense, is meant, that there would be no love, nor faith, nor knowledges of good and truth, remaining in the Christian Church, in the last time thereof, when it draws to its end. That “the sun” signifies love, has been shown in The Apocalypse Revealed (n. 53, 54, 413, 796, 831, 961). That “the moon” signifies faith (n. 53, 332, 413, 423, 533). That “the stars” signify the knowledges of good and truth (n. 51, 74, 333, 408, 419, 954).
And these things are done, notwithstanding it is owing to this doctrine alone, that the sun is at this day darkened, the moon deprived of her light, and the stars of the heavens have fallen, that is, have perished. It has been testified to me, that the doctrine of faith in imputed justice has blinded the minds of men at this day to such a degree, that they will not, and therefore as it were cannot, see any Divine truth by the light of the sun, nor by the light of the moon, but only by the light of a fireplace by night; on which account I will venture to assert, that supposing Divine truths concerning the conjunction of charity and faith, concerning heaven, the Lord, and eternal happiness, to be sent down from heaven engraven in silver characters, they would not be thought worthy to be read by the sticklers for justification; but the case would be quite otherwise supposing a paper concerning justification by faith alone to be brought up from hell. It is also said in the Formula Concordiae, that the article of justification by faith alone, or the justice of faith, is the chief article in the whole Christian doctrine; and that the works of the law are utterly to be excluded from this article (pp. 17, 61, 62, 72, 89, 683; Appendix, p. 164).
They who are in the present justifying faith, are meant by “the he-goats” in Daniel and in Matthew.
It is written in Daniel:
I saw in a vision a ram, which had two horns that were high, but the higher came up last; and the horn pushed westward, and northward, and southward, and made itself great. Then I saw a he-goat coming from the west, over the face of the whole earth, which had a horn between its eyes; and he ran to the ram in the fury of his strength, and broke his two horns, and cast him down to the earth, and trampled him: but the great horn of the he-goat was broken, and instead of it there came up four horns; and out of one of them came forth a little horn which waxed exceeding great towards the south, towards the east, and towards honorableness, and even to the host of heaven; and it cast down of the host and of the stars to the earth, and trampled them: yea, he extolled himself to the prince of the host, and took from him the daily sacrifice, and cast away the place of his sanctuary, for he cast down truth to the earth. And I heard one saint saying, how long shall this vision be, the daily sacrifice, and the wasting transgression, that both the holy place and the host should be given to be trodden under foot? And he said, even to the evening the morning, then shall the holy place be justified (8:2-14).
That this vision is a prediction of the future states of the church is very evident, for it declares, that “the daily sacrifice was taken away from the prince of the host, the habitation of his sanctuary cast down, and the he-goat cast down truth to the earth”; moreover, that “a saint said, How long shall this vision be, that both the holy place and the host should be given to be trodden under foot?” and that this should be “even to the evening the morning, when the holy place shall be justified.” By “the evening the morning” is meant the end of the old church, when a New Church commences.
Then shall the Son of man say to the he-goats on His left hand, depart from Me, for I was hungry, and ye gave Me no meat; I was thirsty, and ye gave Me no drink; I was a stranger, and ye took Me not in; I was naked, and ye clothed Me not, I was sick and in prison, and ye visited Me not; and these shall go away into eternal punishment. That the same are here meant by “he-goats” and “sheep” as by the “he-goat” and “ram” in Daniel, is very evident. That by “he-goats” are meant those who are in the present justifying faith, appears from this, that to the sheep are enumerated works of charity, and it is said that they did them; and that to the he-goats the same works of charity are enumerated, but it is said that they did them not, and that they are therefore condemned. For they who are in the present justifying faith, neglect works, because they deny them to have anything of salvation or of the church in them. When charity is thus removed, good works, which are of charity, slip away from the mind, and are obliterated; so that they are never remembered, nor is the least effort made to recall them to mind from the Law of the Decalogue. It is a general rule of religion, that as far as anyone does not will goods, and hence does not do them, so far he wills evils, and hence does them; and on the contrary, that as far as anyone does not will evils, and hence does not do them, so far he wills goods, and hence does them. These latter are the “sheep,” but the former are the “he-goats.” If all the evil had been there meant by the “he-goats,” instead of the works of charity which they had not done, the evils which they had done would have been enumerated.
Mine anger was kindled against the shepherd, and I will visit the he-goats (10:3).
And in Ezekiel:
Behold I judge between cattle and cattle, between the rams and the he-goats; seemeth it a small thing unto you, to have eaten up the good pasture, but ye must trample down with your feet also the residue of the pastures? Ye thrust all the infirm sheep with your horns, until ye have dispersed them; therefore will I save My flock, that it will be no more a prey (34:17, 18, 22 seq.).
They who have confirmed themselves in the present justifying faith are meant in Revelation by “the dragon and his two beasts,” and by “the locusts”; and this same faith, when confirmed, is there meant by “the great city which is spiritually called Sodom and Egypt, where the two witnesses were slain,” as also by “the pit of the abyss, from which the locusts went forth.”
That in seven chapters of Revelation it treats of the perverted state of the church with the Reformed, and in two chapters of the perverted state of the church with the Roman Catholics, and that the states of both churches, as existing at the present day, are condemned, has been shown in the explanation thereof, in the work entitled, The Apocalypse Revealed, and that not by vain conjectures, but by full proofs. That by “the dragon” treated of in chapter 12 are meant those in the church of the Reformed who make God three, and the Lord two, and who separate charity from faith, by making their faith spiritual and saving, and not charity, see there (n. 532-565), and the Relation adjoined (n. 566). That they are further described by “the two beasts,” one rising out of the sea, and the other out of the earth (as related in chap. 13), see n. 567-610, and the Relation (n. 611). That they are also described by “the locusts,” which came forth out of the pit of the abyss (as mentioned in chap. 9), see n. 419-42. That this same faith, when confirmed, is meant, by “the great city, which is spiritually called Sodom and Egypt,” where the two faithful witnesses were slain (as related in chap. 11), see n. 485-530, particularly n. 500-503, and the Relation (n. 531). That they are also meant by “the pit of the abyss,” out of which issued smoke as out of a great furnace, and the sun and the air were darkened, and then locusts came forth (chap. 9), see n. 421-424.
“That pit, which is like the mouth of a furnace, appears in the southern quarter; and the abyss beneath it is of great extent towards the east; they have light even there, but if light from heaven be let in, there is immediate darkness; wherefore the pit is closed up at the top. There appear in the abyss huts constructed as of brick, which are divided into distinct cells, in each of which is a table, whereon lie papers, with some books. Everyone there sits at his own table, who in this world had confirmed justification and salvation by faith alone, making charity a merely natural and moral act, and the works thereof only works of civil life, whereby men may reap rewards in the world; but if done for the sake of salvation, they condemn them, and some even rigorously, because human reason and will are in them. All who are in this abyss, have been scholars and learned men in the world; and among them are some metaphysicians and scholastics, who are there esteemed above the rest. But their lot is as follows: when first they come thither, they take their seats in the first cells, but as they confirm faith by excluding the works of charity, they leave the first seats, and enter into cells nearer the east, and thus successively till they come towards the end, where they are who confirm those dogmatic things from the Word; and because they then cannot but falsify the Word, their huts vanish, and they find themselves in a desert. There is also an abyss beneath that abyss, where those are who in like manner have confirmed justification and salvation by faith alone, but who in their spirits have denied God, and in their hearts have made a jest of the holy things of the church; there they do nothing but quarrel, tear their garments, get up on the tables, stamp with their feet, and assail each other with reproaches; and because it is not permitted them to do evil to anyone, they threaten with the mouth and fists.
Unless the New Church be established by the Lord, no one can be saved; and this is meant by these words, “Unless those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved” (Matt. 24:22).
By “shortening those days,” is meant the putting an end to the present church, and establishing the New Church; for, as has been said above, in Matt. 24, it treats of the successive decline and the perversions of the Christian church, even to the consummation and end thereof, and then of the coming of the Lord. The reason why no flesh could be saved, unless those days should be shortened, is because the faith of the present church is founded on the idea of three Gods, and with this idea no one can enter heaven; consequently no one can enter heaven with the faith of the present church, because the idea of three Gods is in all and every part thereof; and besides, in that faith there is no life from the works of charity. That the faith of the present church cannot be conjoined with charity, and produce any fruits which are good works, was shown above (n. 47-50). There are two things which form heaven in man, namely, the truths of faith and the goods of charity; the truths of faith effect the presence of the Lord, and show the way to heaven, and the goods of charity effect conjunction with the Lord, and introduce into heaven. And everyone is there introduced into light according to his affection of truth, and into heat according to his affection of good. That the affection of truth is faith in its essence, and the affection of good charity in its essence, and that the marriage of them both constitutes the church, may be seen above (n. 48). The church and heaven make one. That these three are not in the churches of the present day, which are built upon faith alone, has been fully shown in the preceding pages.
And the dragon was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him; woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea, for the devil is come down unto them, having great wrath; and he persecuted the woman, who brought forth a son (Rev. 12:9, 12, 13).
But after the dragon was cast into hell (20:10), then it was that John saw the new heaven and the new earth, and saw the new holy Jerusalem coming down from God out of heaven (Rev. 21:1, 2 seq.). What is meant by “the dragon,” and who the dragons are, may be seen above (n. 87).
The opening and rejection of the dogmas of faith of the present church, and the revelation and reception of the tenets of the faith of the New Church, is meant by these words in Revelation: “He that sat upon the throne said, Behold I make all things new; and He said unto me, Write, for these words are true and faithful” (chap. 21:5).
“He that sat upon the throne,” that is, the Lord, said these things to John, when he saw “the New Jerusalem coming down from God out of heaven.” That by “the New Jerusalem” is meant the New Church, will be shown in the following chapter. The reason why the falsities of the dogmas of the faith of the present church must first be opened and rejected, before the truths of the dogmas of the New Church can be revealed and received, is, because they do not agree together, no not in one single point or particular; for the dogmas of the present church are founded upon a faith, in which it is unknown whether there be any essential of the church, or not. The essentials of the church, which conjoin themselves with a faith in one God, are charity, good works, repentance, and a life according to the Divine laws; and because these together with faith affect and move the will and thought of man, they conjoin man with the Lord, and the Lord with man. Since, therefore, none of these essentials enter into the faith of the present church at its first approach, which is called the act of justification, it cannot possibly be known whether this faith be in man, or not, consequently whether it be anything, or whether it be only an idea; for it is said, that man in that act is like a stock or a stone, and that he can neither will, think, cooperate, no, nor even apply or accommodate himself to the reception thereof in the smallest degree, see above [n. 15 (c) (d)]. Since, therefore, the case is such, that no one can guess, much less know, whether that faith be in him, and thus whether it be in him like a painted flower, or like a flower of the field in him; or whether it be like a bird flying by him, or like a bird that has built her nest in him; I ask by what tokens or signs is this to be known? If it be answered, that it is to be known from charity, good works, repentance, and exercises of the law, which follow after this faith, and yet have no connection with it; I leave it to men of sagacity to determine, whether things that have no connection with faith, can possibly be signs testifying thereof. For this faith of theirs, they say, is neither preserved nor retained by the things above mentioned, see above [n. 12 (m) (n)]. From what has been said we may draw the following conclusion, that in the faith of the present day there is nothing of the church, and thus that it is not anything, but only an idea of something. Since then this faith is of such a nature, it is deservedly to be rejected, yea, it rejects itself, as that of which nothing of the church can be predicated.
He that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new; and He said, Write, for these words are true and faithful (Rev. 21:5).
Which is the Word, that was God with God, and is the true Light which enlighteneth every man; and became flesh (John 1:1, 2, 9, 14).
That He is the truth itself, and thus the light itself, is also testified in other places; for He says:
I am the Light of the world (John 8:22; 9:5).
And in another place:
While ye have the Light, believe in the Light, that ye may be sons of the Light. I am come a Light into the world, that whosoever believeth in Me, may not abide in darkness (John 12:36, 46).
I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last, the bright and morning Star (Rev. 22:13, 16).
And in Matthew:
When Jesus was transformed, His face shone as the sun and His raiment became as the light (Matt. 17:1, 2).
Hence it appears why and whence this imaginary faith came into the world, namely, because they have not approached the Lord. And I can, from all experience, and thence testimony from heaven, declare with certainty, that it is impossible to derive a single genuine theological truth from any other source than from the Lord alone; nay, that to derive it from any other source is as impossible, as it is to sail from England or Holland to the Pleiades, or to ride on horseback from Germany to Orion in the sky.
The New Church about to be established by the Lord is the New Jerusalem, treated of in Revelation (chap. 21 and 22), which is there called “the Bride and the Wife of the Lamb.”
The reason why the New Church is meant by “the New Jerusalem coming down from God out of heaven” (Rev. 21), is that Jerusalem was the metropolis of the land of Canaan, and there was the temple, the altar, there the sacrifices were offered, thus Divine worship, to which every male throughout the land was commanded to come three times a year. Then, because the Lord was in Jerusalem, and taught in its temple, and afterwards glorified His Human there; hence it is that by “Jerusalem” is signified the church. That by “Jerusalem” is meant the church, is very clear from the prophecies in the Old Testament concerning a New Church to be established by the Lord, wherein it is called “Jerusalem.” The following passages only shall be quoted, from which anyone of interior reason may clearly see, that by “Jerusalem” is meant the church:
Behold I create a new heaven and a new earth, and the former shall not be remembered; behold I will create Jerusalem, an exultation, and her people a gladness, that I may exult over Jerusalem, and be glad over My people. Then the wolf and the lamb shall feed together: they shall not do evil in all the mountain of My holiness (Isa. 65:17, 18, 19, 25).
For Zion’s sake I will not be silent, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest, until her justice go forth as splendor, and her salvation as a lamp that burneth. Then the Gentiles shall see thy justice, and all kings thy glory; and thou shalt be called by a new name; which the mouth of Jehovah shall utter; and thou shalt be a crown of beauty, and a tiara of a kingdom, in the hand of thy God. Jehovah shall be well pleased in thee, and thy land shall be married. Behold thy salvation shall come, behold His reward is with him: and they shall call them the people of holiness, the redeemed of Jehovah; and thou shalt be called a city sought out, not deserted (Isa. 62:1-4, 11-12).
Awake, awake, put on thy strength, O Zion; put on the garments of thy beauty, O Jerusalem, the city of holiness; for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean. Shake thyself from the dust, arise, sit down, O Jerusalem. The people shall know My name in that day; for I am He that doth speak, behold it is I. Jehovah hath comforted His people, He hath redeemed Jerusalem (Isa. 52:1, 2, 6, 9). Shout O daughter of Zion, be glad with all the heart, O daughter of Jerusalem; the king of Israel is in the midst of thee: fear not evil any more; he will be glad over thee with joy, he will rest in thy love, he will eat over thee with shouting; I will give you for a name and a praise among all the people of the earth (Zeph. 3:14-17, 20).
Thus saith Jehovah, thy Redeemer, saying to Jerusalem, thou shalt be inhabited (Isa. 44:24, 26).
Thus saith Jehovah, I will return to Zion, and dwell in the midst of Jerusalem, whence Jerusalem shall be called the city of truth, and the mountain of Jehovah of Hosts the mountain of holiness (Zech. 8:3, 20-23).
Then shall ye know that I am Jehovah your God, dwelling in Zion, the mountain of holiness, and Jerusalem shall be holiness. And it shall come to pass in that day, that the mountains shall drop must, and the hills shall flow with milk, and Jerusalem shall sit from generation to generation (Joel 4:17-21).
In that day shall the branch of Jehovah be for ornament and glory; and it shall come to pass that he that is left in Zion, and he that remaineth in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, every one that is written for life in Jerusalem (Isa. 4:2, 3). In the last days the mountain of the house of Jehovah shall be established on the head of the mountains, for out of Zion shall go forth doctrine, and the Word of Jehovah from Jerusalem (Micah 4:1, 2, 8).
At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of Jehovah, and all nations shall be gathered to Jerusalem for the name of Jehovah, neither shall they go any more after the confirmation of their own evil heart (Jer. 3:17).
Look upon Zion, the city of our stated feasts, thine eyes shall see Jerusalem, a quiet habitation, a tabernacle that shall not be destroyed; the pins thereof shall not be removed forever, and the cords thereof shall not be torn out (Isa. 33:20); besides other passages, as (Isa. 24:23; 37:32; 66:10-14; Zech. 12:3, 6-10; 14:8, 11, 12, 21; Mal. 3:2, 4; Ps. 122:1-7; Ps. 130:4-6).
That by “Jerusalem” in the above passages is meant a church to be established by the Lord, and not the Jerusalem inhabited by the Jews, is plain from every particular of the description in the passages quoted; as that “Jehovah God was about to create a new heaven and a new earth,” and also “Jerusalem” at the same time; and that “this would be a crown of beauty, and a tiara of a kingdom”; that it is to be called “holiness,” and “the city of truth, the throne of Jehovah,” “a quiet habitation,” ” a tabernacle that shall not be taken down”; that “the Wolf and the lamb shall feed together therein,” and that “the mountains shall drop down with new wine, and the hills flow with milk,” and that “it should remain from generation to generation”; besides other circumstances, as respecting the people therein, that they should be “holy, all written for life,” and should be called “the redeemed of Jehovah.” Moreover, all those passages treat of the coming of the Lord, and particularly of His second coming, when Jerusalem shall be such as is there described; for heretofore she has not been married, that is, has not been “the Bride and the Wife of the Lamb,” as “the New Jerusalem” is said to be in the Apocalypse. The former or present church is meant by “Jerusalem,” and its beginning is there described in these words in Daniel:
Know and perceive, that from the going forth of the Word, unto the restoring and building of Jerusalem, even unto Messiah the Prince, shall be seven weeks; afterwards in sixty and two weeks it shall be restored, and the street and the ditch shall be built, but in distress of times (9:25).
But its end is described by these words:
At length upon the bird of abominations shall be desolation, and even to the consummation and decision it shall drop upon the devastation (ver.27). This last passage is meant by the following words of the Lord in Matthew:
When ye shall see the abomination of desolation foretold by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place, let him that readeth note it well (chap. 24:15).
That “Jerusalem” in the places above adduced, does not mean the Jerusalem inhabited by the Jews, may appear from those places in the Word, where it is said of that city that it was entirely destroyed, and that it was to be destroyed, as in (Jer. 5:1; 6:6, 7; 7:17, 18, seq.; 8:6, 7, 8, seq.; 9:10, 11, 13, seq, 13:9, 10, 14; 14:16; Lam. 1:8, 9, 17; Ezek. 4:1 to the end; 5:9 to the end; 12:18, 19; 15:6-8; 16:1-63; 23:1-40; Matt. 23:37, 38; Luke 19:41-44; 21:20-22; 23:28-30); besides many other passages; and also where it is called “Sodom” (Isa. 3:9; Jer. 23:14; Ezek. 16:46, 48); and in other places.
He that hath the Bride is the Bridegroom, but the friend of the Bridegroom is he who standeth and heareth Him, and rejoiceth because of the Bridegroom’s voice (John 3:29).
Jesus said, while the Bridegroom is with them, the sons of the marriage cannot fast (Matt. 9:15; Mark 2:19, 20; Luke 5:34, 35).
I saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a Bride adorned for her Husband (Apoc. 21:2).
The angel said unto John, Come, and I will show thee the Bride, the Lamb’s Wife; and from a mountain he showed him the holy city Jerusalem (Apoc. 21:9).
The time of the marriage of the Lamb is come, and His Wife hath made herself ready; happy are they who are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb (Apoc. 19:7, 9).
I am the Root and Offspring of David, the bright and morning Star. The Spirit and the Bride say, Come; and let him who heareth say, Come; and him that thirsteth let him come: and whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely (Apoc. 22:16, 17).
The faith of the New Church cannot by any means be together with the faith of the former church, and if they are together, such a collision and conflict will take place that everything of the Church with man will perish.
The reason why the faith of the New Church cannot by any means be together with the faith of the former or present church, is, because they do not agree together in one third, no, nor even in one tenth part. The faith of the former church is described in Revelation (chap. 12) by “the dragon,” but the faith of the New Church by “the woman encompassed with the sun, having upon her head a crown of twelve stars, whom the dragon pursued, and at whom he cast water as a flood, that he might swallow her up,” see above (n. 87-90). These two cannot be together in one city, much less in one house, consequently they cannot be together in one mind; and if they should be together, the unavoidable consequence must be, that the woman would be continually exposed to the anger and insanity of the dragon, and in fear lest he should devour her son; for it is said in Revelation, that:
The dragon stood before the woman who was ready to be delivered, in order to devour her offspring, and the woman, after she had brought forth, fled into the wilderness (Rev. 12:1, 4, 6, 14-17).
The faith of the former church is a faith of the night, for human reason has no perception of it; wherefore it is also said, that the understanding must be kept in obedience thereto; yea, it is not known whether it be within man or without him, because nothing of man’s will and reason enters into it, no, nor charity, good works, repentance, the Law of the Decalogue, with many other things which really exist in the mind of man. That this is the case, may be seen above (n. 79, 80, 96-98). But the faith of the New Church enters into a conjugial covenant with all these, and conjoins itself to them; and because it is thus in the heat of heaven, it is also in the light thereof, and is a faith of light. Now a faith of night and a faith of light cannot be together any more than an owl and a dove in one nest. For in such case the owl would lay her eggs, and the dove hers, and after sitting, the young of both would be hatched, and then the owl would tear in pieces the young of the dove, and would give them to her own young for food; for the owl is a bird of prey. There is a further reason why the faith of the former church and the faith of the New Church cannot possibly be together, and that is, because they are heterogeneous; for the faith of the former church springs from an idea of three gods, see n. 30-38, but the faith of the New Church from the idea of one God; and as there hence arises a heterogeneity between them, there must inevitably, if they are together, be such a collision and conflict, that everything of the church would perish; that is, man would either fall into a delirium or into a swoon, as to spiritual things, until at length he would scarcely know what the church is, or whether there be any church. From what has been said, it follows, that they who have confirmed themselves in the faith of the old church, cannot, without endangering their spiritual life, embrace the faith of the New Church, until they first have disproved its particulars, and thus have extirpated the former faith, together with its offspring or eggs, that is, its dogmas; the nature of which has been already shown in the foregoing pages, particularly at n. 64-69.
The Roman Catholics at this day know nothing of the imputation of the merit of Christ, and of justification by faith therein, into which their church was formerly initiated, because it is entirely concealed under their externals of worship, which are many; for which reason, therefore, if they recede but in part from their externals of worship, and immediately approach God the Savior Jesus Christ, and administer the Holy Eucharist in both kinds, they may be brought into the New Jerusalem, that is, into the New Church of the Lord, more easily than the Reformed.
That the primates and leaders of the Romish church, at their inauguration into the ministry, swear to observe the decrees of the Council of Trent, appears from the bull of the Roman pontiff Pius IV, where, in the form of the oath of their profession of faith, dated the 18th of November, 1564, we find these words: “I firmly believe and profess all and every thing contained in the creed used by the holy church of Rome; and I receive, without any doubt, all such things as are maintained and declared in her holy canons, and general councils, and especially by the most holy Council of Trent; so help me God.” That they also bind themselves by an oath to believe and profess what the Council of Trent has established, concerning the imputation of the merit of Christ, and justification by faith therein, is evident from these words in the same bull: “I embrace and receive each and all things, which have been determined and declared in the most holy Council of Trent, concerning original sin and justification.” What these are, may be seen from the extracts taken from that council, see above (n. 3-8). From these principles established in that council, the following consequences have been drawn, namely, “That the Roman Catholics, before the Reformation, held precisely the same doctrines as the Reformed have done after it, with respect to the imputation of the merit of Christ, and justification by faith therein, only with this difference, that they conjoined the same faith with charity and good works,” see above (n. 19-20). Also, “That the leading reformers, Luther, Melancthon, and Calvin, retained all the dogmas concerning the imputation of the merit of Christ, and justification by faith, just as they then were and had been with the Roman Catholics; but that they separated charity and good works from that faith, and declared them to have no saving efficacy, to the intent that they might be severed from the Roman Catholics, as to the very essentials of the church, which are faith and charity,” see above (n. 21-23). Moreover, “That nevertheless the aforesaid reformers adjoined good works, and even conjoined them, to their faith, but in man as a passive subject; but the Roman Catholics conjoin them in him as an active subject; and that nevertheless there actually is a conformity of sentiment between both the one and the other, as to faith, works, and merits,” see above (n. 24-29). From what has been shown, then, it is evident, that this faith is a faith which the Roman Catholics swear to observe, equally as well as the Reformed.
I. That to everyone after death is imputed the evil in which he is, and in like manner the good.
II. That the induction of the good of one into another, is impossible.
III. That a faith of the imputation or application of the justice or merits of Christ, because it is impossible, is an imaginary faith.
1. That everyone has his own life, thus a life distinct from that of another, is known. For there is a perpetual variety, and no two things are alike; hence it is that everyone has his own. This manifestly appears from the faces of men, there is not given one face exactly like that of another, nor ever can be to eternity, because there do not exist two minds alike, and the face is from the mind, for it is, as is said, the type of the mind, and the mind derives its origin and form from the life. Unless a man had his own life as he has a mind and face of his own, he would not have any life after death distinct from that of another; nay, heaven could not exist, for this consists of perpetual varieties; the form of this is solely from the varieties of souls and minds disposed into such an order, as to make one; and they constitute one from that One whose life is in the whole and every particular there, as the soul is in man. Unless this were the case, heaven would be dispersed, because its form would be dissolved. The One from whom the life of all and everyone proceeds, and from whom that form coheres together, is the Lord.
2. That the life of everyone remains with him after death, is known in the church from the Word, and particularly from the following passages:
The Son of man shall come, and then He shall render unto everyone according to his deeds (Matt. 16:27).
I saw the books opened, and all were judged according to their works (Rev. 20:12, 13).
In the day of judgment God will render unto everyone according to his works (Rom. 2:6; 2 Cor. 5:10).
The works, according to which it shall be rendered unto everyone, are the life, for the life effects them, and they are according to the life. Forasmuch as it has been granted me for many years to be with angels, and to speak with newcomers from the world, I can testify as a matter of certainty, that everyone is there explored as to the quality of his past life, and that the life which he had contracted in the world, abides with him to eternity.
I have spoken with those who lived many ages ago, whose life was known to me from history, and I found them similar to the description. I have also heard from the angels, that no one’s life can be changed after death, because it is organized according to his love and faith, and hence according to his works; and that if the life were changed, the organization would be destroyed, which never can be done. They further added, that a change of organization can only take place in the material body, and by no means in the spiritual body, after the former is rejected.
3. That to the evil is then imputed the evil of his life, and that to the good is imputed his good. The imputation of evil after death, does not consist in accusation, blame, censure, or in passing judgment, as in the world; but the evil itself effects this. For the evil of their own accord separate themselves from the good, because they cannot be together; the delights of the love of evil are averse to the delights of the love of good, and delights exhale from everyone, as odors from every vegetable on earth; for they are no longer absorbed and concealed by the material body as before, but freely flow forth into the spiritual atmosphere from their loves; and inasmuch as evil is there perceived as it were in its odor, it is this which accuses, blames, inculpates, and judges; not before any judge, but before everyone who is in good; and this is what is meant by imputation. The imputation of good is effected in the same manner; this takes place with those who in the world had acknowledged that every good in them was and is from the Lord, and nothing thereof from themselves. These, after they have been prepared, are let into the interior delights of their own good, and then a way is opened for them towards a society in heaven, whose delights are homogeneous. This is done by the Lord.
1. That every man is born in evil, is known in the church. This evil is said to be hereditary from Adam; but it is from parents, from whom everyone derives his disposition or inclination. That it is so experience and reason proves; for the likenesses of parents may be traced in the faces, characters, and manners of their children, and their posterity. Hence families are distinguished by many, and their propensities are also judged of: wherefore, the evils which parents have contracted, are transmitted by propagation to their posterity, under a species of inclination towards them; hence are derived the evils into which men are born.
2. That man is led into good through regeneration by the Lord. That there is regeneration, and that unless one is regenerated, he cannot enter into heaven, is very evident from the Lord’s words in John 3:3, 5. That regeneration is purification from evils, and thus renovation of life, cannot lie hidden in the Christian world, for reason also sees this, whilst it acknowledges that everyone is born in evil, and that evil cannot be washed and wiped away, like filth by soap and water, but by repentance.
3. That this is effected by faith in the Lord, and by a life according to His commandments. The precepts of regeneration are five, as may be seen above (n. 43, 44); among which are these. That evils ought to be shunned, because they are of the devil and from the devil; that goods ought to be done, because they are of God and from God; and that the Lord is to be approached, that He may lead us so to do. Let everyone consider and weigh with himself, whether good can be derived to man from any other source; and if he has not good he cannot be saved.
4. Wherefore the good of one cannot by application be transferred to another, and so imputed. From what has been said above, it follows, that man by regeneration is renewed as to his spirit, and that this is effected by faith in the Lord, and at the same time by a life according to His commandments. Who does not see, that this renewal can only be effected from time to time, nearly in like manner as a tree takes root, and grows successively from a seed, and is perfected? They who have a different notion of regeneration and renovation, know nothing of the state of man, nor anything about evil and good, as that they are diametrically opposite to each other, and that good cannot be implanted but in proportion as evil is removed; neither do they know, that so long as anyone is in evil, he is averse to good which in itself is really good; wherefore if the good of one were to be applied and so induced into another who is in evil, it would be like casting a lamb to a wolf, or fastening a pearl to a hog’s snout. From what has been said it is evident, that the induction of the good of one into another is impossible.
Then shall ye begin to say, we have eaten and drunk in Thy presence, and Thou hast taught in our streets; but He shall answer, I say unto you, I know you not, whence ye are; depart from Me all ye workers of iniquity (Luke 13:26, 27; Matt. 7:22, 23).
Depart therefore every one to his place; you see the openings into those caverns, enter therein, and work shall be given each of you to do, and afterwards food in proportion to your work; but if not, still presently you will be compelled by hunger to enter.
Afterwards there came a voice from heaven to some on that land, who were without the great city, and who are also described in the Apocalypse (11:13), crying aloud, “Take heed to yourselves, take heed how you associate yourselves with such persons. Cannot you understand, that evils, which are called sins and iniquities, render man unclean and impure? How can man be cleansed and purified from them, but by actual repentance, and faith in the Lord God the Savior? Actual repentance consists in a man’s examining himself, in knowing and acknowledging his sins, in making himself guilty, in confessing them before the Lord, in imploring help and power to resist them, and thus in desisting from them, and leading a new life, and doing all these things as of himself. Do this once or twice in a year, when you come to the Holy Communion; and afterwards when the sins, whereof you made yourselves guilty, recur, then say to yourselves, we will not consent to them, because they are sins against God; this is actual repentance. Who cannot understand, that he who does not examine himself and see his sins, remains in them? For all evil is delightful to a man from his birth; it is a delight to revenge, to commit whoredom, to defraud and to blaspheme; does not the delight cause them not to be seen? And, if perchance it is said that they are sins, do you not on account of that delight excuse them?
“Yea, do you not by falsities confirm them, and persuade yourselves that they are not sins, and so remain in them, and afterwards do them more than before; even till you do not know what sin is, or whether there be any sin? But the case is otherwise with everyone who performs actual repentance; the evils which he has known and acknowledged he calls sins, and therefore he begins to shun and be averse to them, and to feel their delight as undelightful; and in proportion as this is the case, so far he sees and loves goods, and at length feels the delights of these, which are the delights of heaven. In a word, so far as anyone rejects the devil to the back, so far he is adopted by the Lord, and by Him is taught, led, withheld from evils, and held in goods. This is the way, and there is no other from hell to heaven.” This is wonderful, that there is in the Reformed a certain deep-rooted opposition and aversion to actual repentance, which is so great, that they cannot force themselves to self-examination, and to see their sins, and to confess them before God; they are seized as it were with horror when they intend it. I have inquired of many in the spiritual world concerning this, and they all said, that it is above their power.
When they heard that the papists practice such duties, namely, that they examine themselves, and confess their sins openly before a monk, they greatly wondered, and likewise that the Reformed cannot do the same in private before God, although it is alike enjoined them previous to their approaching the Holy Supper. Some have examined into the cause of this, and found, that faith alone induces such an impenitent state and such a heart; and then it was given them to see, that such of the papists as approach and adore Christ, and do not adore, but only honor, the primates and leaders of their church are saved.
After the above admonition, was heard as it were thunder, and a voice speaking from heaven, saying, “We are amazed; say unto the assembly of the Reformed, believe in Christ, and do the work of repentance, and you shall be saved.” And I told them; and added further, “Is not baptism a sacrament of repentance, and thereby an introduction into the church? What else do the sponsors promise for the person to be baptized, but that he will renounce the devil and his works? Is not the Sacred Supper a sacrament of repentance, and thereby an introduction into heaven? Is it not declared to the communicants, that they must altogether do the work of repentance before they approach? Is not the Decalogue, which teaches repentance, the doctrine of the whole Christian Church? Is it not there said, in the six commandments of the second table, thou shalt not do this and that evil, and not said, thou shalt do this and that good? Hence you may know, that in proportion as anyone shuns evil, in the same proportion he loves good, and that before this, he does not know either what good is, nor what evil is.”
“Faith separate from charity is like the light in winter, and faith conjoined with charity is like the light in spring; the light in winter, which is light separate from heat, and in consequence thereof conjoined with cold, strips the trees of all their leaves, kills the grass, hardens the earth and freezes the water; but the light in spring, which is light conjoined with heat, causes the trees to vegetate, first into leaves, then into blossoms, and lastly into fruits; it opens and softens the earth whereby it yields grass, herbs, flowers, and fruits; and it also dissolves the ice, so that the waters flow from their fountains. Exactly similar is the case with faith and charity; faith separate from charity deadens all things, and faith conjoined with charity vivifies all things.
“The nature of such deadening and vivifying may be seen to the life in our spiritual world, because here faith is light, and charity, heat; for where faith is conjoined with charity, there are paradisal gardens, flower beds, and lawns, in their pleasantness according to conjunction. But where faith is separate from charity, there does not grow even grass, nor any green thing, except it be on thorns and briers.” There were then not far from us some of the clergy, whom the angel called justifiers and sanctifiers of men by faith alone, and also arcanists; we said to them the same things and likewise demonstrated them even so that they saw it to be so. But when we asked them whether it was so, they turned themselves away, and said, “We did not hear;” whereupon we cried aloud to them saying, “Hear us now, then;” but immediately they stopped their ears with both hands, and exclaimed, “We do not wish to hear.”
From Jeremiah (7:2-4, 9-11).
Stand in the gate of the house of Jehovah, and proclaim there this word: Thus saith Jehovah of Hosts, the God of Israel: Render good your ways and your words; trust ye not upon the words of a lie, saying, the temple of Jehovah, the temple of Jehovah, the temple of Jehovah is here [that is, the church]. Will ye steal, kill, commit adultery, and swear falsely, and after that come and stand before Me in this house, whereon My name is called, and say, we are delivered, whilst ye do all these abominations? Is not this house become a den of robbers? Even I behold, I have seen, saith Jehovah.
THE FAITH OF THE NEW HEAVEN AND THE NEW CHURCH IN ITS UNIVERSAL FORM, is this: That the Lord from eternity who is Jehovah, came into the world that He might subdue the hells, and glorify His Human; and that without this no mortal could have been saved; and that they are saved who believe in Him.
It is said in the universal form, because this is the universal of faith, and the universal of faith is what must enter into each and all things. It is a universal of faith, that God is one in essence and Person, in whom is the Trinity, and that the Lord God the Savior Jesus Christ is He. It is a universal of faith, that no mortal could have been saved, unless the Lord had come into the world. It is a universal of faith, that He came into the world to remove hell from man, and He removed it by combats against it, and by victories over it; thus He subdued it, and reduced it to order, and under obedience to Himself. It is a universal of faith, that He came into the world to glorify the Human which He assumed in the world, that is, to unite it with the Divine from which it was; thus, having subdued hell, He keeps it in order and under obedience to Himself to eternity. Inasmuch as both these could only be effected by means of temptations admitted into His Human, even to the last, which was the passion of the cross, therefore He endured that. These are the universals of faith concerning the Lord. The universal of Christian faith on man’s part is, that he should believe in the Lord, for by believing in Him conjunction with Him is effected, and by conjunction salvation. To believe in Him, is to have confidence that He will save; and because none can have such confidence but he who lives well, therefore this is also meant by believing in Him.
The Word was with God, and God was the Word; and the Word became flesh (John 1:1, 14).
And by this in the same:
I went forth from the Father, and am come into the world; again I leave the world, and go to the Father (John 16:28).
Hence it appears, that without the coming of the Lord into the world, no one could have been saved. The case is similar at this day; wherefore, unless the Lord come again into the world in Divine truth, which is the Word, no one can be saved.
The particulars of faith on the part of man are these:-I. That God is one, in whom is the Divine Trinity, and that He is the Lord God the Savior Jesus Christ. II. That saving faith is to believe in Him. III. That evils ought to be shunned, because they are of the devil and from the devil. IV. That goods ought to be done, because they are of God and from God. V. And that they should be done by man as of himself, but that he must believe that they are from the Lord with him and through him. The first two have relation to faith; the next two to charity; and the fifth respects the conjunction of charity and faith, and thereby of the Lord and man: see also what has been said above on these subjects (n. 44).
The First Relation. When I was engaged in the explanation of chapter 20 of Revelation, and was meditating about the dragon, the beast, and the false prophet, an angelic spirit appeared to me, and asked, “What do you meditate about?” I answered, “About the false prophet.” Then he said, “I will lead you to the place where they are who are meant by the false prophet; and who are the same that are meant in chapter 13 by the beast out of the earth, which had two horns like a lamb, and spoke like a dragon.” I followed him, and lo, I saw a multitude, in the midst of which there were leaders of the church, who taught that nothing saves man but faith in the merit of Christ, and that works are good, but not for salvation, and that still they are to be taught from the Word, in order that the laity, especially the simple, may be kept more strictly within the bond of obedience to the magistracy, and forced, as if from religion, therefore interiorly, to exercise moral charity.
Then one of them observing me, said, “Do you wish to see our shrine, wherein is an image representative of our faith?” I approached and saw it, and lo, it was magnificent. In the midst of it there was the image of a woman clothed in a scarlet robe, and holding in her right hand a gold coin and in her left a string of pearls. But both the image and the shrine were induced by fantasy; for infernal spirits can by fantasies represent magnificent objects, by closing the interiors of the mind, and opening only its exteriors. When I perceived, however, that they were such sorceries, I prayed to the Lord, and suddenly the interiors of my mind were opened, and then, instead of a magnificent shrine, I saw a house full of clefts from the roof to the bottom, in which nothing cohered together; and instead of the woman I saw hanging up in that house an image, the head of which was like a dragon’s, the body like a leopard’s, and the feet like a bear’s, and a mouth like a lion’s; thus altogether like the beast out of the sea which is described (Rev. 13:2); and instead of a floor there was a swamp containing a multitude of frogs; and I was informed, that beneath the swamp was a large hewn stone, under which the Word lay deeply hidden. On seeing this, I said to the juggler, “Is this your shrine?” and he said, “It is”; but then suddenly his interior sight was opened also, and he saw the same things that I did; whereupon he cried with a great cry, and said, “What and whence is this?” And I said, “This is from light from heaven, which discloses the quality of every form, and thus the quality of your faith separate from spiritual charity.” Then immediately an east wind blew, and carried away that shrine with the image, and also dried up the swamp, and thereby exposed the stone under which lay the Word; and afterwards there breathed as it were a vernal warmth from heaven, and lo, then in the same place, there appeared a tabernacle, as to its outward form simple.
And the angels who were with me said, “Behold, the tabernacle of Abraham, such as it was when the three angels came to him and announced the future birth of Isaac. It appears indeed simple to the eye, but nevertheless according to the influx of light from heaven it becomes more and more magnificent.” And they were permitted to open the heaven, in which were the spiritual angels who excel in wisdom, and then from the influx of light from heaven thence, the Tabernacle appeared as a temple resembling that of Jerusalem; and on looking into it, I saw that the stone in the floor, under which the Word was deposited, was set with precious stones, from which there issued forth bright rays as of lightning that shone upon the walls, and caused beautiful variegations of color on certain cherubic forms that were sculptured on them. As I was admiring these things, the angels said, “Thou shalt yet see something still more wonderful.” And it was permitted them to open the third heaven, in which were the celestial angels who are in love, and then from the light thence inflowing that whole temple disappeared, and in its stead was seen the Lord alone, standing on the foundation stone, which was the Word, in the same form that He appeared to John (Rev. 1). But because holiness then filled the interiors of the minds of the angels, occasioning in them an inclination to fall on their faces, suddenly the way of light from the third heaven was closed by the Lord, and the way from the second heaven opened; in consequence of which the former appearance of the temple returned, and also of the tabernacle, but this was in the temple. Hereby was illustrated the meaning of these words in Chap. 21 of Revelation:
Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them (Rev. 21:3).
And by these:
And I saw no temple in the New Jerusalem, for the Lord God Omnipotent and the Lamb are the temple of it (Rev. 21:22).
They said that the Divine Esse is One, the Same, the Itself, and Indivisible; thus also the Divine Essence, because the Divine Esse is the Divine Essence; and thus also God, because the Divine Essence, which is also the Divine Esse, is God. They illustrated this by spiritual ideas, saying that the Divine Esse cannot fall into many, every one of which has the Divine Esse, and yet be One, the Same, Itself, and Indivisible; for each would think from his Esse from himself and by himself; if he should at the same time also think from the others and by the others unanimously, there would be many unanimous gods, and not one God. For unanimity, as it is the consent of many, and at the same time of each one from himself, and by himself, does not agree with the unity of God, but with a plurality; they did not say of Gods, because they could not; for the light of heaven, from which was their thought, and in which their discourse proceeded, resisted.
They also said, that when they wished to pronounce the word Gods, and each as a Person by himself, the effort of utterance immediately fell of itself into One, yea, into the Only God. To this they added that the Divine Esse is the Divine Esse in Itself, not from Itself; because from Itself supposes an Esse in Itself from another, and thus supposes a God from God, which is not given. That which is from God is not called God, but is called the Divine; for what is a God from God; and thus what is a God from God born from eternity; and what is a God from God proceeding through a God born from eternity, but words in which there is not the least light from heaven?
They said further, that the Divine Esse, which in itself is God, is the Same: not the Same simply, but Infinite; that is, the Same from eternity to eternity: it is the Same everywhere, and the Same with every one and in everyone; but that all the variety and variableness is in the recipient; the state of the recipient does this. That the Divine Esse, which is God in Himself, is the Itself, they illustrated thus. God is the Itself, because He is Love Itself, Wisdom Itself, or what is the same, He is Good Itself, and Truth Itself, and thence Life Itself; which unless they were the Itself in God, would not be anything in heaven and in the world; because there would not be anything of them having relation to the Itself. Every quality derives its quality from this, that there is an Itself from which it is, and to which it has relation, that it may be such. This Itself, which is the Divine Esse, is not in place, but is with those and in those who are in place, according to reception; since of love and wisdom, and of good and truth, and thence of life, which are the Itself in God, yea, are God Himself, place cannot be predicated, or progression from place to place, but without place, whence is omnipresence. Wherefore the Lord says, that “He is in the midst of them”; also “He in them, and they in Him.” But because He cannot be received by anyone as He is in Himself, He appears as He is in Himself as the sun above the angelic heavens, the proceeding from which as light is Himself as to wisdom, and as heat is Himself as to love. He Himself is not the sun; but the Divine love and Divine wisdom, going forth from Himself proximately, round about Himself, appear before the angels as the sun. He Himself in the sun is a Man, He is our Lord Jesus Christ both as to the Divine from which, and as to the Divine Human: since the Itself, which is Love Itself and Wisdom Itself, was His soul from the Father, and thus the Divine Life, which is Life in itself. It is otherwise in every man: in him the soul is not life, but a recipient of life. The Lord also teaches this, saying:
I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life;
As the Father hath life in Himself, so hath He given to the Son to have life in Himself.
Life in Himself is God. They added to this, that he who is in any spiritual light, can perceive that the Divine Esse, which is also the Divine Essence, because it is One, the Same, the Itself, and thence Indivisible, cannot be given in many; and that if it were said to be given, manifest contradictions would follow. After hearing these things, the angels perceived in my thought the common ideas of the Christian Church concerning a Trinity of Persons in Unity and their Unity in Trinity, respecting God, as also concerning the birth of a Son of God from eternity: and they then said, “What are you thinking of? Are you not thinking those things from natural light, with which our spiritual light does not agree? Wherefore, unless you remove the ideas of that thought, we close heaven to you, and go away.” But I then said to them, “Enter, I pray, more deeply into my thought and perhaps you will see agreement.” And they did so, and saw that by three Persons I understand three proceeding Divine Attributes, which are Creation, Salvation, and Reformation; and that these Attributes are of the one God: and that by the birth of a Son of God from eternity I understand His birth foreseen from eternity and provided in time. And I then related that my natural thought concerning a Trinity and Unity of Persons, and concerning the birth of a Son of God from eternity, I received from the doctrine of faith of the church, which has its name from Athanasias; and that that doctrine is just and right, provided that instead of a Trinity of Persons there be there understood a Trinity of Person, which is given only in the Lord Jesus Christ; and instead of the birth of a Son of God there be understood His birth foreseen from eternity and provided in time; because as to the Human, which He took to Himself in time, He is called openly the Son of God.
The angels then said, “Well, well,” and they requested that I would say from their mouth, that if any one does not go to the God of heaven and earth Himself, he cannot come into heaven; because heaven is heaven from that Only God; and that this God is Jesus Christ, who is Jehovah the Lord, Creator from eternity, Redeemer in time, and to eternity Regenerator; thus who is at the same time the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit; and that this is the Gospel which is to be preached. After this the heavenly light before seen above the opening returned and gradually descended, and filled the interiors of my mind, and enlightened my natural ideas of the Unity and Trinity of God: and then the ideas received about them in the beginning, which were merely natural, I saw separated, as the chaff is separated from the wheat by the motion of a fan, and carried away as by a wind into the north of heaven, and dispersed.
There then suddenly appeared a number of the clergy, occupying all the seats, clothed in the garments of their priestly office. At one side was a wardrobe, where an angel keeper stood; and within there lay splendid garments in beautiful order. It was a Council convoked by the Lord; and I heard a voice from heaven, saying, “Deliberate.” But they said, “Upon what?” It was said, “Concerning the Lord the Savior and concerning the Holy Spirit.” But when they thought upon these subjects, they were not in enlightenment; wherefore they supplicated, and then light descended from heaven, which first illumined the back part of their heads, and afterwards their temples, and at length their faces: and then they began; and, as it was commanded, first, concerning the Lord the Savior. The first question proposed and discussed was, “Who assumed the Human in the Virgin Mary,” And an angel standing at the table upon which was the Word, read before them these words in Luke:
The angel said to Mary, Behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and shalt bring forth a Son, and shalt call His name Jesus; He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Most High. And Mary said to the angel, How shall this be, since I know not a man? And the angel answering said, The Holy Spirit shall come upon thee; and the power of the Most High shall overshadow thee; whence the Holy One that is born of thee shall be called the Son of God (Luke 1:31, 32, 34, 35).
As also what is in Matt. 1:20-25; and what is in verse 25 there he read emphatically. Besides these, he read many things from the Evangelists, as Matt. 3:17; and Matt. 17:5, John 20:31; and elsewhere, where the Lord as to His Human is called “the Son of God,” and where He from His Human calls Jehovah His “Father,” as also from the Prophets, where it is foretold that Jehovah Himself would come into the world; among which also are these two in Isaiah:
It shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God, whom we have waited for, that He may free us; this is Jehovah, whom we have waited for; let us exult and rejoice in His salvation (25:9).
The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, prepare ye the way for Jehovah, make straight in the desert a highway for our God: for the glory of Jehovah shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: Behold the Lord Jehovih cometh in strength; He shall feed His flock as a shepherd (Isa. 40:3, 5, 10, 11).
And the angel said, “Since Jehovah Himself came into the world, and assumed the Human, and thereby saved and redeemed men, He is therefore called `the Saviour’ and `the Redeemer’ in the prophets.” And then he read before them these passages following:
Surely God is in thee, and there is no God besides; verily Thou art a hidden God, O God of Israel the Saviour (Isa. 45:14, 15).
Am not I Jehovah? and there is no God else besides Me, a just God and a Saviour, there is none besides Me (Isa. 45:21, 22).
I am Jehovah, and besides Me there is no Saviour (Isa. 43:11).
I Jehovah am thy God, and thou shalt acknowledge no God beside Me, and there is no Saviour besides Me (Hos. 13:4). That all flesh may know that I Jehovah am thy Saviour, and thy Redeemer (Isa. 49:26; 60:16).
As for our Redeemer, Jehovah of Hosts in His name (Isa. 47:4).
Their Redeemer is strong, Jehovah of Hosts is His name (Jer. 50:34).
O Jehovah my Rock and my Redeemer (Ps. 19:14).
Thus said Jehovah thy Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel, I Jehovah am thy God (Isa. 48:17; 43:14; 49:7; 54:8).
Thou O Jehovah art our Father, our Redeemer, Thy name is from an age (Isa. 63:16).
Thus said Jehovah thy Redeemer, I am Jehovah that maketh all things, and alone by Myself (Isa. 44:24).
This said Jehovah King of Israel, and His Redeemer Jehovah of Hosts, I am the First and the Last, and besides Me there is no God (Isa. 44:6).
Jehovah of Hosts is His name, and thy Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel, the God of the whole earth shall He be called (Isa. 54:5).
Behold, the days come, that I will raise up unto David a just Branch who shall reign King, and this is His name, Jehovah our Justice (Jer. 23:5, 6; 33:15, 16).
In that day shall Jehovah he King over all the earth; in that day shall Jehovah be one; and His name One (Zech. 14:9). Being confirmed from all these passages, those that sat upon the seats said unanimously that Jehovah Himself assumed the Human to redeem and save men. But there was then heard a voice from the Roman Catholics, who had hid themselves behind the altar, saying, “How can Jehovah the Father become Man? is He not the Creator of the universe?” And one of them that sat upon the seats of the second row turned himself, and said, “Who then?” And he behind the altar answered, “The Son from eternity.” But he received for answer, “Is not the Son from eternity, according to your confession, the Creator of the universe also? And what is a Son or a God born from eternity? And how can the Divine essence, which is one and indivisible, be separated, and some of it descend and take on the Human, and not at the same time the whole?”
The second discussion concerning the Lord was, whether God the Father and He thus are one, as the soul and the body are one? They said that this is a consequence, because the soul is from the Father. And then one of those who sat upon the seats in the third row, read from the Creed which is called Athanasian these words: “Although our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is God and Man, still they are not two, but one Christ; yea, He is altogether one, He is one Person; since as the soul and the body make one man, so God and Man are one Christ.” The reader said that this faith is received in the whole Christian world, even by the Roman Catholics. And they then said, “What need is there of more? God the Father and He are one, as the soul and the body are one.” And they said, “As it is so, we see that the Lord’s Human is Divine, because it is the Human of Jehovah; then that the Lord as to the Divine Human is to be approached; and that thus and not otherwise can the Divine which is called the Father be approached.” This conclusion of theirs the angel confirmed by many more passages from the Word, among which were these in Isaiah:
Unto us a Boy is born, unto us a Son is given, whose name is Wonderful, Counsellor, God, Hero, the Father of eternity, the Prince of peace (9:6).
In the same:
Abraham hath not known us, and Israel doth not acknowledge us; Thou, O Jehovah, art our Father, our Redeemer, from everlasting is Thy name (63:16).
And in John:
Jesus said, He that believeth in Me, believeth in Him that sent Me, and He that seeth Me seeth Him who sent Me (12:44, 45).
Philip said unto Jesus, Show us the Father; Jesus saith unto him, He that seeth Me seeth the Father; how sayest thou then, show us the Father? Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me (John 14:8-11).
Jesus said, I and the Father are one (John 10:30).
All things which the Father hath are Mine, and all Mine are the Father’s (John 16:15; 17:10).
And lastly this:
Jesus said, I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no one cometh to the Father but by Me (John 14:6).
On hearing these, they all said with one voice and heart, that the Lord’s Human is Divine, and that this is to be approached that the Father may be approached; since Jehovah God, who is the Lord from eternity, through it sent Himself into the world, and made Himself visible to the eyes of men, and thus accessible. Likewise He made Himself visible to the eyes of men, and thus accessible in the human form to the ancients, but then through an angel.
After this followed the deliberation concerning the Holy Spirit. And first was disclosed the idea of many respecting God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, which was as if God the Father was sitting on high, and the Son at His right hand, and they were sending forth the Holy Spirit from them, to enlighten and teach men. But a voice was then heard from heaven, saying, “We cannot endure that idea of thought. Who does not know that Jehovah God is omnipresent? He who knows and acknowledges this, will also acknowledge that He Himself enlightens and teaches; and that there is not an intermediate God, distinct from Him, and still less from two, as one person from another. Therefore let the former idea, which is vain, be removed; and let this which is just be received; and you will see this clearly.” But a voice was then heard again from the Roman Catholics, who had hid themselves behind the altar of the temple, saying, “What then is the Holy Spirit, who is named in the Word in the Evangelists and in Paul, by whom so many of the learned men from the clergy, especially from ours, say that they are led? Who in the Christian world at this day denies the Holy Spirit and its operation?” At this one of those who were sitting upon the second row of seats, turned himself and said, “You say that the Holy Spirit is a Person by Himself and a God by Himself. But what is a person going forth and proceeding from a person, but operation going forth and proceeding? One person cannot go forth and proceed from another through a third, but operation can. Or what is a God going forth and proceeding from a God, but the Divine going forth and proceeding? One God cannot go forth and proceed from another through a third, but the Divine can. Is not the Divine Essence one and indivisible? And as the Divine Essence or the Divine Esse is God, is not God one and indivisible?” On hearing these things, they who sat upon the seats concluded unanimously that the Holy Spirit is not a Person by itself, nor a God by itself; but that it is the Holy Divine going forth and proceeding from the Only Omnipresent God, who is the Lord. At this the angels that stood by the golden table upon which was the Word, said, “It is well. We do not anywhere read in the Old Testament, that the prophets spoke the Word from the Holy Spirit, but from Jehovah the Lord; and where `the Holy Spirit’ is mentioned in the New Testament, the proceeding Divine is meant, which is the Divine enlightening, teaching, vivifying, reforming, and regenerating.” After this there followed another discussion concerning the Holy Spirit, which was, From whom does the Divine which is called the Holy Spirit proceed? is it from the Divine which is called the Father, or from the Divine Human which is called the Son? And when they were discussing this, the light shone on them from heaven, from which they saw that the Holy Divine, which is meant by the Holy Spirit, proceeds from the Divine in the Lord through His glorified Human, which is the Divine Human, comparatively as all activity proceeds from the soul through the body with man. This the angel standing at the table confirmed from the Word by these passages:
He whom the Father hath sent, speaketh the words of God; He hath not given the Spirit by measure unto Him; the Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into His hand (John 3:34, 35).
There shall come forth a Rod out of the stem of Jesse, the Spirit of Jehovah shall rest upon Him, the Spirit of wisdom and Intelligence, the Spirit of counsel and might (Isa. 11:1, 2).
That the Spirit of Jehovah was given upon Him, and that it was in Him (Isa. 42:1; 59:19, 20; 61:1; Luke 4:18).
When the Holy Spirit shall come, which I will send unto you from the Father (John 15:26).
He shall glorify Me, for He shall receive of mine, and announce it unto you: all things that the Father hath are mine; therefore I said that He shall receive of mine, and announce it unto you (John 16:14, 15).
If I go away, I will send the Comforter unto you (John 16:7).
The Comforter is the Holy Spirit (John 14:26).
The Holy Spirit was not yet, because Jesus was not yet glorified (John 7:39).
After the glorification, Jesus breathed on them, and said to the disciples, Receive ye the Holy Spirit (John 20:22).
And in the Apocalypse:
Who shall not glorify Thy name, O Lord? for Thou alone art holy (15:4).
Since the Lord’s Divine operation from His Divine omnipresence is meant by the Holy Spirit, therefore when He spoke to the disciples concerning the Holy Spirit which He would send from God the Father, He also said:
I will not leave you orphans; I go away, and come unto you: and in that day ye shall know that I am in My Father, and ye in Me, and I in you (John 14:18, 20, 28).
And just before His departure out of the world, He said:
Lo, I am with you all the days until the consummation of the age (Matt. 28:20).
Having read these words before them, the angel said, “From these and many other passages in the Word, it is manifest that the Divine which is called the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Divine in the Lord through His Divine Human.” To this they that sat upon the seats said, “This is the Divine truth.”
At length this decision was made, “That from the deliberations in this Council we have clearly seen, and thence acknowledge as the holy truth, that in the Lord God the Saviour Jesus Christ there is a Divine Trinity, which is the Divine from which, that is called the Father; the Divine Human, which is the Son; and the proceeding Divine, which is the Holy Spirit, crying out, That in Jesus Christ dwelleth all the fullness of the Divinity bodily (Col. 2:9). Thus there is one God in the church.”
After these things were concluded in that magnificent Council, they rose up: and the angel keeper of the wardrobe came and brought to each of those who sat upon the seats, splendid garments interwoven here and there with threads of gold, and said, “Receive these wedding garments.” And they were conducted in glory into the New Christian Heaven, with which the Lord’s church on earth, which is the New Jerusalem, will be conjoined.
There shall be one day which is known to Jehovah, not day nor night, but about the time of evening it shall be light. It shall come to pass in that day that living waters shall go forth from Jerusalem. And Jehovah shall be King over all the earth; in that day Jehovah shall be one, and His name one (Zech. 14:7-9).