July 30, 2016

Where the Word Is and Where the Word is Not

From Apocalypse Explained ~ Emanuel Swedenborg

The Church [is] where the Word is, because the Lord's Church is in the whole world, but in a special sense where the Word is, and where the Lord is known through the Word.
The Lord, and thus the angels of heaven, are present with the men of this earth by means of the Word; for the Word is written by pure correspondences: from this it comes that the Lord and the angels of heaven are present also with those who are around or outside the church, who are called Gentiles [nations].

For the Church in the whole world is before the Lord as One Man, for it makes a one with the angelic heaven. ...

In this Man, the Church where the Word is and where the Lord is known thereby is like the heart and the lungs; with those who are in celestial love, the Church is like the heart, and with those who are in spiritual love like the lungs; consequently, as all the members, viscera, and organs of the body live from the heart and from the lungs, and from their influx and consequent presence, so all in the whole earth, who constitute the Church universal, live from the Church where the Word is; for the Lord flows in therefrom with love and with light, and vivifies and enlightens all who are in any spiritual affection for truth, wherever they are.

The light of heaven, or the light in which are the angels of heaven who are from this earth, is from the Lord by means of the Word; from this as from a center light is diffused into the circumferences in every direction, thus to those who are there, who, as was said, are the Gentiles that are outside of our church. But this diffusion of light is effected in heaven by the Lord, and what is done in heaven flows also into the minds of men, for the minds of men make one with the minds of spirits and angels. It is for this reason that those are especially treated of in [Revelation] this prophetical book who are of the Church where the Word is; then those also are treated of who are of the Church where the Word is not, although not proximately, for the arrangement of those who are in the circumferences follows according to the order in which those are who are in the center.

(Apocalypse Explained 351)