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entation that this religion, so strongly fortified, could be subverted 80 suddenly and so totally, and they themselves might perish: " And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her: for no one buyeth their merchandise any more," signifies, the grief of those of the inferior orders who minister and gain by holy things, by reason that after the destruction of Babylon, they cannot make a profit of these things as before : “ The merchandise of gold, and of silver, and of precious stones, and of pearls," signifies, that they no longer possess these things, because they are not in possession of the spiritual goods and truths, to which such things correspond : “ And of fine linen, and of purple, and of silk, and of scarlet,” signifies, that they no longer possess these things, because they are not in possession of the celestial goods and truths, to which such things correspond: “ And all thyine wood and every vessel of ivory,” signifies, that they no longer possess these, because they are not in possession of the natural goods and truths, to which such things correspond : “ And every vessel of most precious wood, and of brass, and of iron, and of marble,” signifies, that they no longer possess these things, because they are not in possession of the scientific goods and truths in matters relating to the church, to which such things correspond : “ And cinnamon, and perfumes, and ointment, and frankincense,” signifies, that they have no longer any worship originating from spiritual goods and truths, because they have nothing inwardly in worship that corresponds to the above-mentioned things : “And wine, and oil, and fine flour, and wheat," signifies, that they have no longer any worship originating in celestial truths and goods, because they have nothing inwardly in worship that corresponds to the things here mentioned : “ And cattle, and sheep,” signifies, that they have no longer any worship originating in external or natural goods and truths of the church, because they have nothing inwardly in worship that corresponds to the things here mentioned : “ And of horses, and of chariots, and of bodies and souls of men,” signifies all these things according to the understanding of the Word and doctrine thence derived, and according to the goods and truths of its literal sense, which they do not enjoy on account of their having falsified and adulterated them : “ And the fruits that thy soul lusted after are departed from thee, and all things dainty and splendid are departed from thee, and thou shalt find them no more at all,” signifies, that all the beatitudes and felicities of heaven, even those of an external nature, such as they covet, will entirely flee from them, and no longer appear, because they have no celestial and spiritual affections of good and truth among them: “The merchants of these things, who were made rich by her, shall stand afar off for fear of her torment, weeping and wailing,” signifies, the state before damnation, and then fear and lamentation of those who have acquired gain by various dispensations and promises of heavenly joys: “And saying, Alas, alas, that great city that was clothed in fine linen, and purple, and scarlet, and decked with gold, and pre
cious stones, and pearls! For in one hour are so great riches come to nought,” signifies, grievous lamentation that their magnificence and lucrative revenues are so suddenly and totally destroyed : “ And every shipmaster, and all the company in ships, and sailors, and as many as ply the sea,” signifies, those who are called the laity, as well in higher as in lower situations of dignity, even to the common people, who are attached to that religion, and love and kiss it, or acknowledge it in their hearts, and venerate it :-“ Stood afar off and cried when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, What city is like unto this great city,” signifies, in a remote state, their mourning over the condemnation of that religion, which they thought supereminent above every religion in the world: " And they cast dust on their heads, and cried, weeping and wailing, saying, Alas, alas, that great city," signifies, their interior and exterior grief and mourning, which is lamentation, that so eminent a religion should be so totally destroyed and condemned: “Wherein were made rich all that had ships in the sea, by reason of her costliness! for in one hour is she made desolate," signifies, by reason that, through the holy things of that religion, all who were willing to buy, had propitiation, and for worldly and temporal riches received celestial and eternal riches: “ Rejoice over her, O heaven, and ye holy apostles and prophets, for God hath executed your judgment upon her," signifies, that the angels of heaven and men of the church, who are in goods and truths derived from the Word, now rejoice in their hearts, because they are removed and rejected who are in the evils and falses of that religion: “And a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast it into the sea, saying, Thus with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down, and shall be found no more at all,” signifies, that by the Lord's strong influx out of heaven, that religion, together with all its adulterated truths of the Word, will be cast headlong into hell, and never appear in the sight of angels any inore: “ And the voice of harpers, and of musicians, and of pipers, and of trumpeters, shall be heard no more at all in thee,” signifies, that among them there will not be any affection of spiritual truth and good, nor any affection of celestial good and truth: “And no craftsman, of whatsoever craft he be, shall be found any more in thee,” signifies, that they who are in that religion from doctrine, and from a life according thereto, have not any understanding of spiritual truth, and therefore neither any thought of spiritual truth, so far as depends upon themselves: " And the sound of a millstone shall be heard no more at all in thee,” signifies, that they who are in that religion from doctrine, and from a life according thereto, make no inquiry, examination, and confirmation of spiritual truth, because the falsity which has been received, and confirmed, and thus implanted, stands in the way: “ And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee," signifies, that they who are in that religion from doctrine, and from a corresponding life, have not any illumination from the Lord, and consequent perception of spiritual
truth: “And the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee,” signifies, that with those who are in that religion from doctrine, and from a life according thereto, there is no conjunction of good and truth which constitutes the church : "For thy merchants were the great men of the earthi," signifies, that the superiors in their ecclesiastical hierarchy are such, because by means of the various and even arbitrary rights left them in the statutes of their order, they traffic and make gain : "For by thy sorcery were all nations deceived,” signifies, their abominable arts and schemes, whereby they have diverted the minds of all from the holy worship of the Lord to the profane worship of livivg and dead men and of idols: “ And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth," signifies, that from the religion which is meant by the city of Babylon, there is an adulteration and profanation of every truth of the Word, and consequently of the church, and that false principles have emanated from thence throughout the whole Christian world.
753. “And after these things I saw,” signifies a manifestation concerning the destruction and condemnation of those who were of the Roman Catholic religion, and exercised power over the holy things of the church and heaven, from a desire of ruling over all, and possessing all the goods of others. These things are here signified by, " after these things I saw," because these are what are treated of in tbis chapter. The tenets of that religion are prefixed to this work, in order that they who are in illumination from the Lord, may see that they have a view to nothing else but dominion over the souls of men, to the end that they may be worshiped as gods, and may alone possess the goods of the whole world; and as this, and not the salvation of souls, was the end, they could not derive their tenets from any other source than from hell; for they could not derive them from heaven, that is, from the Lord, but from themselves, because they had transferred to themselves all things belonging to the Lord. What can be more detestable than to divide the body and blood of the Lord, or the bread and wine, in the holy supper, manifestly contrary to its institution, and this under feigned pretences, and solely for the sake of the daily and nightly sacrifices of the mass, by which they amass worldly wealth? What can be more detestable than to worship dead men with divine invocations, to fall down upon their knees before their images, and with holy reverence to kiss them, yea, and their bones and relics, and thus to divert the people from divine worship, and to introduce them unto profane worship, and this also for the sake of lucre ? What can be more detestable than to make divine worship on Sundays and festivals to consist in masses not understood, thus in externals, which are of the body and its affections, without internals, which are of the mind and its affections, and to ascribe to the former all holiness, and thereby to keep all in ignorance and in a blind faith, that they may exercise rule and make gain? What can be more detestable than to transfer all the Lord's divine power to themselves, which is nothing less than to remove the Lord from his throne and place themselves upon it? What can be more detestable than to take the Word, which is divine truth itself, from the laity and common people, and in its stead to issue forth edicts and tenets, in which there is scarcely a single genuine truth of the Word ? These are the things which are treated of in this chapter of the Apocalypse.
754. “ An angel came down froin heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory,” signifies, strong influx from the Lord out of heaven by divine truth, whereby his church was in celestial light. By an angel is signified the Lord; by an angel coming down from heaven, is signified the Lord's influx out of heaven; by having great power, is signified strong influx; by the earth being lightened with his glory is signified that the church was in celestial light from the Lord by divine truth. That by an angel and angels in the Word is meant the Lord, may be seen, n. 258, 344, 465, 649, 657, 718; by coming down, is signified to flow in, because it is said of the Lord ; that by the earth is signified the church, see n. 285, 721 ; that glory is predicated of divine truth, and signifies it, n. 249, 629. It is called
divine truth in celestial light, because divine truth proceeding from the Lord is the light of heaven, which illuminates the angels, and constitutes their wisdom. The reason why the Lord's influx by divine truth, and the consequent illumination of the church, are now spoken of, is, because by means of that influx they who are in falses are separated from those who are in truths, and also because by the light of truth falses appear according to their real quality:
755. “And he cried mightily with a great voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen,” signifies, that he made it known, that by the divine power of the Lord, all who were in that religion, and at the same time in the love of dominion, were destroyed in the spiritual world, and in consequence cast into their respective hells. That this is the signification of these words, may appear from the work concerning the Last Judgment and the Destruction of Babylon, published in London, anno. 1758, where its destruction is described from n. 53–64. From which it may be seen, that they of that religion, who from the heat of self-love exercised dominion over the holy and divine things of the Lord, which relate to heaven and the church, and who were mere idolaters, were destroyed and cast into hell ; but that they of the same religion who lived according to the precepts of the decalogue, by shunning evils as sins, and at the same time looked up to the Lord, were saved, may be seen in the Continuation concerning the Last Judgment and the Spiritual World, n. 58; to which it is unnecessary to add any thing more. The like is said of Babylon in Isaiah : “A lion cried upon the watch-tower, and said, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, and all the graven images of her gods he hath broken unto the ground,” xxi. 8, 9. They of that religion, who are of like characters with the above described, since the last judgment, are collected together, and are sent from time to time to their like.
756. “ And is become the habitation of demons," signifies, that their bells are bells of the lusts of dominion from the heat of self-love, and of the lusts of profaning the truths of heaven from the spurious zeal of that love. By