Arcana Coelestia (Elliott) n. 1444

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1444. 'And the Canaanite was at that time in the land' means the hereditary evil from the mother, in His external man. This becomes clear from what has been stated already about the Lord's heredity; for He was born as any other is born and from the mother acquired evils which He fought against and overcame. It is well known that the Lord underwent and endured very severe temptations - which will in the Lord's Divine mercy be described further on - temptations so great in fact that He fought by Himself and from His own power against the whole of hell. Nobody can undergo temptation unless he has evil clinging to him. The person who has no evil cannot experience the smallest temptation, for it is evil that spirits from hell stir up.

[2] With the Lord no evil of His own doing or that was His own was present, as there is with all human beings, only hereditary evil from the mother, which is here called 'the Canaanite at that time in the land'. For this matter see what has been stated above in verse 1, in 1414, to the effect that people are born with two heredities in them, the first from the father, the second from the mother. What comes from the father remains for ever, but what comes from the mother is dispelled by the Lord when the person is being regenerated. The Lord's heredity from His Father however was Divine, while the heredity from the mother was the hereditary evil referred to here, through which He underwent temptations. Regarding His temptations, see Mark 1:12, 13; Matt 4:1; Luke 4:1, 2. But, as has been stated, He had no evil of His own doing or which was His own, nor did He have any hereditary evil from the mother after He had overcome hell by means of temptations. It is for this reason that the expression at that time occurs here, that is to say, 'the Canaanite was at that time in the land'.

[3] The Canaanites were people who dwelt by the sea and by the bank of the Jordan, as is clear in Moses,

The spies returned and said, We came into the land to which you sent us, and it is indeed flowing with milk and honey, and this is its fruit. Nevertheless the people dwelling in the land are powerful and the cities are very strongly fortified, and also we saw the descendants of Anak there. The Amalekite dwells in the south, and the Hittite, Jebusite, and Amorite dwell in the mountains, and the Canaanite dwells by the sea and by the bank of the Jordan. Num 13:27-29.

'The Canaanite dwelt by the sea and by the bank of the Jordan' meant evil consequently residing with the external man, such as that acquired by heredity from the mother, for the sea and the Jordan were boundaries.

[4] That this kind of evil is meant by 'the Canaanite' is clear also in Zechariah,

And there will no longer be a Canaanite in the house of Jehovah Zebaoth on that day. Zech 14:21.

This refers to the Lord's kingdom. It means that the Lord overcame the evil meant by 'the Canaanite' and drove it out of His kingdom. Evils of every kind are meant by the idolatrous nations in the land of Canaan, among which were the Canaanites, Gen 15:19-21; Exod 3:8, 17; 23:23, 28; 33:2; 34:11; Deut 7:1; 20:17; Josh 3:10; 24:11; Judg 3:5. Which evil is meant by each nation specifically will in the Lord's Divine mercy be stated elsewhere.

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