Selection from Apocalypse Explained ~ Emanuel SwedenborgThere is successive order and there is simultaneous order. In successive order things pure and perfect appear above, and those less pure and perfect appear below. The three heavens are in successive order, one above another; and in the higher heavens all things are pure and perfect, while in the lower they are less pure and perfect. Simultaneous order exists in lower things, and fully in the lowest; for higher things let themselves down and place themselves in the order that is called simultaneous, in which the pure and perfect things, which were the higher, are in the middle or center, and the less pure and perfect, which were the lower, are in the circumferences. Therefore all things that have existed in successive order are together in ultimates in their order.
And as all higher things place themselves in what is lowest in simultaneous order, it follows that in the ultimates of the Word, which constitute the sense of its letter, are all things of the Divine truth and of the Divine good, even from their firsts. And as all things of the Divine truth and the Divine good are together in their ultimate, which is the sense of the letter of the Word, there evidently is the power of Divine truth, yea, the omnipotence of the Lord in saving man. For when the Lord operates, He operates not from first things through mediates into ultimates, but from first things through ultimates and thus into mediates.
- This is why the Lord is called in the Word the First and the Last; and this is why the Lord assumed the Human, which in the world was the Divine truth or the Word, and glorified it even to the ultimates, which are the bones and the flesh, in order that He might operate from first things through ultimates, and not as before from man, but from Himself.
The boys who called Elisha "bald head" were torn in pieces by bears, because Elisha and Elijah represented the Word; and the Word without the sense of the letter, which is like a head without hair, is without any power, and thus is no longer the Word. (See 2 Kings 2) "Bears" signify those that have strength from the ultimates of truth. The power of the Word in the sense of the letter is the power to open heaven, whereby communication and conjunction are effected, and also the power to fight against falsities and evils, thus against the hells. A man who is in genuine truths from the sense of the letter of the Word can disperse and scatter the whole diabolical crew and their devices in which they place their power, which are innumerable, and this in a moment, merely by a look and by an effort of the will. In brief, in the spiritual world nothing can resist genuine truths confirmed by the sense of the letter of the Word.
(Apocalypse Explained 1086:b)