Apocalypse Explained (Whitehead) n. 747

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747. That accuseth them before God day and night, signifies and who have denounced them and disputed with them continually from the Word. This is evident from the signification of "to accuse," as being to assault (see above, n. 746); consequently it means to denounce and to dispute with, for he who accuses also disputes and denounces; also from the signification of "before God," as being from the Word (of which presently); also from the signification of "day and night," as meaning continually and without intermission; for "day and night" signify all states of life, "day" the state of the life when the mind is in clear thought, and "night" when the mind is in obscure thought. These two states of life mean continually, because there is in the spiritual world no division of times into years, months, weeks, days, and hours, but instead of these there are changes of state; for there angels and spirits are sometimes in clear thought and sometimes in obscure thought. That angels and spirits are by turns in a state of clear perception and in a state of obscure perception can be seen in the work on Heaven and Hell (n. 154-161). But in particular their states follow each other variously, as from one affection into another; and it is from these states that angels and spirits number their times; thus these take the place of times in the world, which are years, months, weeks, days, nights, and hours. Because then their states of life in general change as to clearness or obscurity of understanding, and thus are in a continual succession, so "days and nights" signify continually. "To accuse before God" signifies to denounce and to dispute from the Word; because those who are meant by "the dragon," who are those that separate faith from life, argue and dispute from the Word; and to dispute from the Word is to dispute "before God," for God is in the Word, since the Word is from God, and is Divine truth proceeding from the Lord. This is why it is said in John:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and God was the Word (John 1:1). They dispute in favor of faith separated from a life of charity, because they confirm their heresy from certain passages in the Word understood according to the mere letter, and when they have thus confirmed it they believe it to be the very truth of the church, although it is a falsity. In general, "to accuse day and night" signifies the continual influx of falsity from those who are meant by "the dragon;" and as their falsities are from the Word falsified, therefore this is signified by "accusing before God."

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