March 17, 2015

The Word is Holy and Divine

From Apocalypse Explained ~ Emanuel Swedenborg
The Word is holy and Divine from inmosts to outermosts is not evident to the man who leads himself, but is evident to the man whom the Lord leads. For the man who leads himself sees only the external of the Word, and judges from its but the man whom the Lord leads judges of the external of the Word from the holiness that is in it. The Word is like a garden, that may be called a heavenly paradise, in which are dainties and delightful things of every kind, dainties from the fruits, and delightful things from the flowers; and in the middle of it trees of life, and near them fountains of living water, and round about trees of the forest, and near them rivers. The man who leads himself judges of that paradise, which is the Word, from its circumference, where the trees of the forest are; but the man whom the Lord leads judges of it from the middle of it, where the trees of life are. The man whom the Lord leads is actually in the middle of it, and looks to the Lord; but the man who leads himself actually sits down at the circumference, and looks away from it to the world.

Again, the Word is like fruit within which there is a nutritious pulp, and in the middle of it seed vessels, in which inmostly is a living germ that germinates in good soil. Again, the Word is also like a most beautiful infant, which, except the face, is enveloped in wrappings upon wrappings; the infant itself is in the inmost heaven, the wrappings are in the lower heavens, and the general covering of the wrappings is on the earth. As the Word is such it is holy and Divine from inmosts to the externals.

(Apocalypse Explained 1072)
From True Christian Religion ~ Emanuel Swedenborg
It is on everyone's lips that the Word is from God, is Divinely inspired, and is therefore holy; and yet it has not been known heretofore where in the Word its Divinity resides. For in its letter the Word appears like ordinary writing, foreign in style, neither lofty nor brilliant as the writings of the present time are in appearance. For this reason the man who worships nature instead of God or more than God, and whose thought therefore is from himself and his selfhood and not from the Lord out of heaven, may easily fall into error respecting the Word, and into contempt for it, and when reading it may say to himself, What does this and that mean? Is this Divine? Can God, whose wisdom is infinite speak thus? Wherein and wherefrom is its holiness, except from some religious notion and consequent persuasion?


Nevertheless, all this does not convince the natural man that the Word is Divine truth itself, in which there is Divine wisdom and Divine life; for he estimates it by its style, in which these are not seen by him. Yet the style of the Word is the Divine style itself, with which no other style can be compared, however sublime and excellent it may seem. The style of the Word is such that there is a holiness in every sentence and in every word, and even in some places in the very letters, and thereby the Word conjoins man with the Lord and opens heaven. There are two things that go forth from the Lord, Divine love and Divine wisdom, or what is the same thing, Divine good and Divine truth. In its essence the Word is both of these; and because, as just said, it conjoins man with the Lord and opens heaven, it fills man with the goods of love and the truths of wisdom - his will with the goods of love and his understanding with the truths of wisdom; thus by means of the Word man has life. But it must be clearly understood that those only have life from the Word who read it for the purpose of drawing from it Divine truths as from their proper fountain, and at the same time for the purpose of applying to the life the truths drawn therefrom; while with those who read the Word solely with a view to gaining worldly honors and riches the opposite effect follows.

(True Christian Religion 189; 191)