Arcana Coelestia (Potts) n. 2447

2447. From Jehovah out of heaven. That this signifies from the laws of order as to truth, because they separate themselves from good, cannot be seen except from the internal sense, by which there is disclosed how the case stands with punishments and damnations: that they in no wise come from Jehovah, that is, from the Lord, but from the man himself, the evil spirit, and the devil; and this from the laws of order as to truth, because they separate themselves from good. [2] All order is from Jehovah, that is, from the Lord, and according to this order are all things directed by Him both in general and in particular, but in many different ways, to wit, from Will, from Good-pleasure, from Leave, and from Permission. The things that are from His will and good-pleasure are from the laws of order as to good, and so also are many of those which are from leave, and some of those which are from permission. But when a man separates himself from good he casts himself into the rule of the laws of order that are of truth separated from good, which are such that they condemn; for all truth condemns man and casts him down into hell; whereas the Lord from good, that is, from mercy, saves him, and uplifts him into heaven. From this we see that it is man himself who condemns himself. [3] The things done from permission are mostly of this nature, as for example, that one devil punishes and torments another; and innumerable other things of this kind. These things are from the laws of order as to truth separated from good; for the devils could not otherwise be held in bonds, and withheld from rushing upon all the well disposed and good, and eternally destroying them. It is the prevention of this which is the good the Lord has in view. The case herein is similar to that which exists on earth, where a mild and clement king, who intends and does nothing but good, must needs suffer his laws to punish the evil and the wicked (although he punishes no one, but rather grieves that they are such that their evils must punish them), for otherwise he would leave his kingdom itself a prey to them; which would be the height of rigor and of unmercifulness. [4] This shows that Jehovah in no wise caused it to rain brimstone and fire, that is in no wise condemned to hell; but that the men themselves who were in evil and thence in falsity did this, because they had separated themselves from good, and so had cast themselves into the rule of the laws of order that come from truth alone. From all which it follows that this is the internal sense of these words. [5] That in the Word "evil," "punishing," "cursing," "damnation," and many other such things are attributed to Jehovah or the Lord, as here that He made it "rain brimstone and fire," we read in Ezekiel:
I will contend against him with pestilence and with blood; and I will rain upon him fire and brimstone (Ezek. 38:22). In Isaiah:
The breath of Jehovah like a stream of brimstone doth kindle it (Isa. 30:33). In David:
Jehovah shall rain upon the wicked snares, fire, and brimstone (Ps. 11:6). Again:
There went up a smoke out of His nostrils, and fire out of His mouth, coals did burn from Him (Ps. 18:8). In Jeremiah:
Lest My fury go forth like fire, and burn, and there is none to quench it (Jer. 21:12). In Moses:
A fire is kindled in Mine anger, and shall burn unto the lowest hell (Deut. 32:22);
besides similar things in many other places. The reason why such things are attributed in the Word to Jehovah or the Lord has been explained in volume 1 (n. 223, 245, 589, 592, 696, 735, 1093, 1638, 1683, 1874); for such things are as far from coming from the Lord, as good is far from evil, or as heaven is from hell, or what is Divine from what is diabolical. Evil, hell, and the devil do these things; but by no means the Lord, who is mercy itself and good itself; but because He appears to do them, therefore for the reasons mentioned in the numbers cited, they are attributed to Him. [6] From its being said in this verse that Jehovah caused it to rain from Jehovah out of heaven, it appears in the sense of the letter as if there were two; one on earth, and one in heaven; but the internal sense teaches how this also is to be understood, namely, that by the Jehovah first named is meant the Lord's Divine Human and Holy proceeding (meant in this chapter by the "two men") and by the Jehovah named in the second place is meant the Divine Itself that is called the "Father" (spoken of in the preceding chapter); and that this Trine is in the Lord, as He himself says in John:
He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father; believe Me, that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me (John 14:9-11). And concerning the Holy proceeding, in the same:
The Comforter shall not speak from Himself but He shall take of Mine, and shall declare it unto you (John 16:13-15). Thus Jehovah is one, although two are here named; two being named for the reason that all the laws of order are from the Lord's Divine Itself, Divine Human, and Holy proceeding.

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