951. As "the seven angels that had the seven last plagues," signify the manifestation of the evils and falsities that have devastated the church, and as these are made manifest by means of the Divine truth in the Word, therefore those angels appeared "clothed in linen clean and bright;" for "linen clean and bright" signifies genuine truth. All angels appear clothed according to their functions; for the garments in which they go clothed correspond to their ministries, and in general to their interiors. The angels who are wise from Divine truth appear in white garments of muslin, lawn, or linen, because "muslin," "lawn," and "linen," correspond to the truths in which they are; and for this reason Aaron and his sons had garments of linen in which they ministered. These are described in Moses:
Thou shalt make for Aaron and his sons linen breeches to cover the flesh of their nakedness, from the loins even unto the thighs; these shall be upon them when they shall go into the Tent of meeting and when they come near unto the altar to minister in the holy place, that they bear not iniquity and die (Exod. 28:42, 43). Again:
When Aaron shall enter into the holy place he shall put on the linen coat of holiness and the linen breeches shall be upon his flesh, and he shall gird himself with a linen belt and shall put on a linen miter (Lev. 16:4). He should put on the same garments when expiating the people (Lev. 16:32). Also when he took the ashes from the altar after the burnt-offering (Lev. 6:10).  In like manner the priests were to minister in the new temple. In Ezekiel:
When the priests the Levites, the sons of Zadok shall enter at the gates of the inner court they shall put on linen garments; no wool shall come upon them while they shall minister in the gates of the inner court and within; linen miters shall be upon their head and linen breeches shall be upon their loins (44:15, 17, 18). They put on linen garments when they ministered holy things, because all holy administration is effected by the Divine truth. For the priesthood in which Aaron and his sons officiated represented the Lord as to the Divine good; and this ministers all things by means of the Divine truth. Moreover, the Divine truth protects from falsities and evils, which are from hell; therefore it is said "that they bear not iniquity and die," which signifies that otherwise falsities from hell would destroy them. These garments were called "garments of holiness," because holiness is predicated of the Divine truth. As the garments of ministry were linen garments, the priests wore a linen ephod when they ministered, as is read of Samuel (1 Sam. 2:18), and of the priests whom Saul slew (1 Sam. 22:18), and of David when he went before the ark (2 Sam. 6:14).  Also of the Lord Himself in John:
Jesus rose up from supper and laid aside His garments, and took a linen cloth and girded Himself, and poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples' feet and to wipe them with the linen cloth with which He was girded (13:4, 5). The washing of the disciples' feet represented and thus signified purification from evils and falsities by means of the Divine truth from the Lord; for all purification from evils and falsities is effected by the Lord by means of the Divine truth; and this is signified by "the linen cloth" with which the Lord girded Himself and with which He wiped the disciples' feet.  Besides these seven angels treated of in Revelation there have been other angels seen in linen garments; as:
The angel who shall set a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh; and who shall go in between the wheels of cherubim and take coals of fire and scatter them over the city (Ezek. 9:3, 4, 11; 10:2, 6, 7). Likewise the angel seen by Daniel, clothed in linen, whose loins were girt with gold of Uphas (Dan. 10:5; 12:6, 7). These appeared clothed in linen because girded for ministry. The angel who measured the new temple, whose appearance was like that of brass:
Was seen to have a line of flax in his hand and a measuring reed (Ezek. 40:3). By "the measuring of the temple" there, is described the New Church as to its quality; this is signified by the number of the measures; and as all the quality of the church is known by the Divine truth, therefore "a line of flax" was in his hand.  As "linen" signifies truth, and "a girdle" everything of it, for it is what embraces and includes all things, and as nothing of truth any longer remained with the sons of Israel, therefore:
The prophet Jeremiah was commanded to buy himself a linen girdle, and to hide it in the cleft of a rock at the Euphrates; and at the end of many days it was spoiled and was profitable for nothing (Jer. 13:1-7). "The linen girdle" signifies all the truth of doctrine from the Word. What is signified by its being "hidden in the cleft of a rock at the Euphrates and was there spoiled," may be seen above (n. 569).  "Linen" signifies the truth of the church also in Isaiah:
A bruised reed He will not break, and smoking flax He will not extinguish, and He will bring forth judgment in truth (42:3). This was said of the Lord; and "the smoking flax," that He will not extinguish signifies the small amount of truth from good with anyone. (The rest may be seen explained above, n. 627.) "Linen" signifies also truth from the Word, especially the truth of the sense of its letter (Hos. 2:5, 9).  Moreover, it was a statute with the sons of Israel:
That they should not wear a garment of wool and linen mixed together (Deut. 22:11). The reason was that "wool" signifies good and "linen" truth, also because man has communication with the societies of heaven by means of his garments; and there are societies that are in good and societies that are in truth; and man must not have communication with different societies at the same time, which would cause confusion. That this was the reason for this statute no one has heretofore known. But it has been granted me to know it from changing my garments; for when I have laid aside a linen garment those in the spiritual world who were in truths have complained that they could not be present; and when I again put on the garment the same spirits became present. That there is such correspondence with the very garments of man has not been known heretofore, and yet it can be seen from the passages cited above, namely, from what is said of the linen garments of Aaron and his sons, the linen ephod that the priests and David wore, the linen in which the angels appeared clothed, and the linen cloth with which the Lord girded Himself and wiped the disciples' feet, also the other garments of Aaron and his sons, all of which were representative; also from the signification of garments in general, as being truths clothing good (see above, n. 64, 65, 195, 271, 395, 475, 476, 637).
(Continuation respecting the First Commandment)
 It is not believed in the world that the love of ruling from the mere delight of ruling, and the love of possessing goods from the mere delight of possession, and not from the delight of uses, conceal in themselves all evils, and also a contempt for and rejection of all things pertaining to heaven and the church; and for the reason that man is stirred up by the love of self and the love of the world to doing good to the church, the country, society, and the neighbor, by making good deeds honorable and looking for reward. Therefore this love is called by many the fire of life, and the incitement to great things. But it is to be known that so far as these two loves regard uses in the first place and self in the second they are good, while so far as they regard self in the first place and uses in the second they are evil, since man then does all things for the sake of self and consequently from self, and thus in every least thing he does there is self and what is his own [proprium], which regarded in itself is nothing but evil. But to regard uses in the first place and self in the second is to do good for the sake of the church, the country, society, and the neighbor; and the goods that man does to these for the sake of these are not from man but from the Lord. The difference between these two is like the difference between heaven and hell. Man does not know that there is such a difference, because from birth and thus from nature he is in these loves, and because the delight of these loves continually flatters and pleases him.  But let him consider that the love of ruling from the delight of ruling, and not from the delight of uses, is wholly devilish; and such a man may be called an atheist; for so far as he is in that love he does not in his heart believe in the existence of God, and to the same extent he derides in his heart all things of the church, and even hates and pursues with hatred all who acknowledge God, and especially those who acknowledge the Lord. The very delight of their life is to do evil and to commit wicked and infamous deeds of every kind. In a word, they are very devils. This a man does not know so long as he lives in the world; but he will know that it is so when he comes into the spiritual world, as he does immediately after death. Hell is full of such, where instead of having dominion they are in servitude. Moreover, when they are looked at in the light of heaven they appear inverted, with the head downwards and the feet upwards, since they gave rule the first place and uses the second, and that which is in the first place is the head, and that which is the second is the feet; and that which is the head is loved, but that which is the feet is trampled upon.