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Serving New Thought is pleased to present
Spirit of Swedenborg
by Emanuel Swedenborg
"Evolution is better than Revolution.
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Gist of Swedenborg
Warfare of Regeneration
Life of Charity and Faith
Death and the Resurrection
First Three States After Death
Communication With the Spiritual World
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"Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and
He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people,
and God Himself shall be with them, and be their God."
-- Rev., XXI, 3
The Church in God's Sight
The Church is in man, and not outside
of him; and the Church at large consists
of the men who have the Church in them. -- The
Church consists of those who from the
heart acknowledge the Divine of the Lord,
who learn truths from Him by the Word, and
do them. -- Every one who lives in the good of
charity and of faith is a Church and a Kingdom
of the Lord. -- The Church in general
is constituted of those who are severally
Churches, however remote they are from one
another. -- The Church of the Lord is scattered
throughout the whole world.
-- Heaven and Hell, n. 57
-- Apocalypse Explained, n. 388
-- Arcana Coelestia, n. 6637; ib., n. 9256
A Succession of Churches
There have been four Churches on this
earth since the day of creation; a first, to
be called the Adamic, a second, to be
called the Noachic; a third, the Israelitish;
and a fourth, the Christian. After these four
Churches, a new one will arise, which is to
be truly Christian, foretold in Daniel and in
the Apocalypse, and by the Lord Himself in
the Evangelists, and looked for by the Apostles.
-- Coronis, Summary, I, VIII
Early Christianity and Its Decline
When a Church is raised up by the
Lord, it is in the beginning blameless;
and one then loves the other as his
brother, as we know of the primitive Church
after the Lord's advent. At that time, all the
sons of the Church lived together like brothers,
and also called one another brother, and
mutually loved each other. But in the course
of time charity diminished, and vanished; and
as it vanished, evils succeeded; and together
with evils falsities insinuated themselves.
Hence came schisms and heresies, which would
never come to be, were charity regnant
-- Arcana Coelestia, n. 1834
The Lord's Second Coming: When? How?
Now is the Lord's Second Coming, and
a New Church is to be instituted. The
Second Coming of the Lord is not a coming
in Person, but in the Word, which is from
Him, and is Himself. We read in many
places that the Lord will come in the clouds
of heaven. The "clouds of heaven" mean the
Word in its natural sense, and "glory" the
Word in its spiritual sense, and "power" the
Lord's power by means of the Word. So the
Lord is now to appear in the Word. He is not
to appear in Person because, since His ascension
into heaven, He is in the Glorified Humanity,
in which He cannot appear to any
man, unless He opens the eyes of his spirit
first, and this cannot be done with any one who
is in evils and thence in falsities. It is vain,
therefore, to believe that the Lord will appear
in a cloud of heaven in Person; but He will
appear in the Word, which is from Him, and
so is Himself.
-- True Christian Religion, nn. 115, 776, 777
What occurred at the end of the Jewish
Church has occurred similarly now; for at the
end of that Church, which was when the Lord
came into the world, the Word was interiorly
opened. Interior Divine truths were revealed
by the Lord, which were to serve the New
Church to be established by Him, and did
serve it, too. To-day, again, for similar
reasons, the Word has been interiorly opened,
and divine truths still more interior have been
revealed, which are to serve a New Church,
which will be called the New Jerusalem.
-- Apocalypse Explained, n. 948
A New Church
It was foretold in the Apocalypse (XXI,
XXII) that at the end of the former Church
a New Church was to be instituted, in which
this would be the chief teaching: that God is
One in Person as well as in Essence, in Whom
is the Trinity, and that that God is the Lord.
This Church is what is there meant by the New
Jerusalem, into which only he can enter who
acknowledges the Lord alone as God of
Heaven and earth.
-- Divine Providence, n. 263
The descent of the New Jerusalem cannot
take place in a moment, but becomes a fact as
the falsities of the former Church are removed.
For what is new cannot enter where falsities
have previously been engendered, unless these
are eradicated; which will take place with the
clergy, and so with the laity.
-- True Christian Religion, n. 784
The Ultimate Goal
Were it received as a principle, that
love to the Lord and charity to the
neighbor are what the whole Law hangs
on and are what all the Prophets speak of, and
thus are the essentials of all doctrine and worship,
then the mind would be enlightened in
innumerable things in the Word, which otherwise
lie hidden in the obscurity of a false principle.
In fact, heresies would be scattered
then, and out of many one Church would come
to be, however the doctrines flowing therefrom
or leading thereto, and the rituals, might differ.
Were the case so, all men would be governed
as a single human being by the Lord; for
all would be as members and organs of one
body, which, dissimilar in form and function
though they are, still have relation to one heart
only, whereon they each and all depend. Then,
in whatever doctrine or outward worship one
might be, he would say of another, "This man
is my brother. I see that he worships the
Lord, and that he is a good man."
-- Arcana Coelestia, n. 2385
Links to Additional Media for Spirit of Swedenborg by Emanuel Swedenborg such as audio and ebooks are located at the bottom of this web page.