Apocalypse Explained (Whitehead) n. 1026

Previous Number Next Number Next Translation See Latin 

1026. Verse 21. And a great hail, as of the weight of a talent, cometh down from heaven upon men, signifies falsities in the greatest degree infernal destroying all the understanding of truth with the men of the church. This is evident from the signification of "hail," as being infernal falsity destroying all the truth and good of the church (see n. 503, 704). This hail is called "great," and "as the weight of a talent," because falsities in the greatest degree infernal are meant. The quality of the falsities is compared to a talent, because a talent was the largest denomination in the reckoning of money and the weighing of silver, and "silver" signifies truth, and in the contrary sense falsity, and "weight" signifies what is heavy from evil, thus in the greatest degree infernal; for falsity from evil is heavy and falls of itself into hell. Also from the signification of "coming down from heaven upon men," as being from hell destroying the understanding of truth with the men of the church; for by "men" men of the church as to the understanding of truth are meant, or what is the same, such understanding of truth as the men of the church possess. [2] "Coming down from heaven" signifies to be from hell, because falsity, which is here signified by a "great hail," does not come down from heaven, but rises up from hell. Hail indeed falls from heaven in the spiritual world as in the natural world, since hail is rain that descends from heaven; but it is frozen into hail by the cold that rises up from hell, and that cold is the absence of heat or of heavenly love. From this it follows that hail does not come down as hail from heaven, but is from hell. It is the same with the rain of brimstone and fire from heaven. "Rain" of water signifies the Divine truth from heaven, but "hail" Divine truth changed into infernal falsity, which is done while it is coming down from heaven.

(Continuation: The Commandments in general)

[3] As Divine truth united to Divine good proceeds from the Lord as a sun, and by this, heaven and the world were made (John 1:1, 3, 10), it follows that it is from this that all things in heaven and in the world have reference to good and to truth and to their conjunction that they may be anything. These ten commandments contain all things of Divine good and all things of Divine truth, and there is also in them a conjunction of these. But this conjunction is hidden; for it is like the conjunction of love to the Lord and love towards the neighbor; Divine good belongs to love to the Lord, and Divine truth to love towards the neighbor; for when a man lives according to Divine truth, that is, loves his neighbor, the Lord flows in with Divine good and conjoins Himself. For this reason there were two tables on which these ten commandments were written, and they were called a covenant, which signifies conjunction; and afterwards they were placed in the ark, not one beside the other, but one above the other, for a testimony of the conjunction between the Lord and man. Upon one table the commandments of love to the Lord were written, and upon the other table the commandments of love towards the neighbor. The commandments of love to the Lord are the first three, and the commandments of love towards the neighbor are the last six; and the fourth commandment, which is "Honor thy father and thy mother," is the mediating commandment, for in it "father" means the Father in the heavens, and "mother" means the church, which is the neighbor.

This page is part of the Writings of Emanuel Swedenborg

© 2000-2001 The Academy of the New Church