Obrazy na stronie
PDF
ePub
[blocks in formation]

We will now proceed to consider some other examples of correspondence. But before I speak of them, I must make one remark to you, which may be applied to all instances of correspondence. This is, that all things whatever must correspond in some way or other to something of the will or the affections, or to something of the understanding or thoughts.

The reason of this is, that correspondence exists between internal things and external things; between spiritual things and natural things; between the things of the spirit and the things of the body. But there is nothing internal, or spiritual, or of the spirit, but affection or thought. Reflect a little upon yourself, and see if you have any notion of anything in your mind, or soul, which does not belong to either of these two. And if there is nothing internal, or of the spirit, which does not belong to one of these two, then external or

natural things must correspond to one of these two if they correspond at all.

But the different forms of affections (or things of the will,) and of truths, (or things of the understanding,) are innumerable.

And the variety of the ways in which they appear and act is infinite. And some things in nature correspond to actions, and in actions there may be both affections and thoughts. Do you understand this? Suppose you take an apple off a table, and eat it. This is an action.

There is in it the love of eating, and the thought that the apple is there, that you can reach it, and that it is good to eat; so there is in this action something of the will and something of the understanding. It is the infinite variety in the forms and appearances and effects of affections and truths which makes the infinite variety in nature, because there is something in nature to correspond, in some way or other, with all of these. And as all our affections, and all our truths and thoughts, grow greatly in the spiritual world, and put on many appearances, and produce many effects, which we now know nothing of; and there

is something in that external world, also, to correspond to all of them, therefore the external world which lies about those who are in the spiritual world is greatly more varied than the external world which is all around us here. For the external world depends upon the internal world, there as well as here; I remind you often of this, because I would not have you forget it.

We have considered the sun and the moon, and light and heat, because they are the first, the most general, and the principal correspondences of love and wisdom, or affection and thought, or good and truth. We will now consider bread and water.

The body is nourished by food. This food is solid or liquid; we eat what is solid; we drink what is liquid.

The mind corresponds to the body. Like the body, it is nourished by food; its food is either the knowledge of good or it is the knowledge of truth.

Our solid food, and especially bread, which is generally our principal solid food, corresponds to and signifies the knowledge of good. Our

drink, and especially water, which is our principal drink, corresponds to and signifies the knowledge of truth. We may say, speaking more generally, bread corresponds to and signifies good, and water corresponds to and signifies truth.

In Exodus, twenty-third chapter, twenty-fifth verse, it is said, “Ye shall serve the Lord your God, and He shall bless thy bread and thy water; and I will take sickness away from the midst of thee.” The Jews, who were only a natural people, understood this to mean only a promise that if they kept the commandments the Lord would make their food wholesome, and would keep them in good health. You may understand more than this. You may understand, that if you really desire to serve God, if

you

endeavor to use all your knowledge of what is good and true in his service, He will bring a blessing upon that knowledge, and will make all your endeavors successful, and will take away from you all the sickness of your souls.

In Psalm one hundred and fifth, verse fortieth, it is said, “He satisfied them with the bread of

heaven.' You hunger after this bread when you earnestly desire to receive the knowledge of good, that you may profit by it, and become good. You will then be satisfied with the bread of heaven." You will pray to your Father in heaven to give you this bread, and you will learn the truth of the text, “He that asketh, receiveth.” You will learn, too, what our Lord meant, when He said “ Blessed is he who hungereth and thirsteth after righteousness, for he shall be filled."

You have seen infants and grown persons baptized. This ceremony or rite is a sacrament, which word means, a holy ceremony.

It was instituted by the Lord, as a sacrament of the church; and this was done because of the correspondence and signification of water. And the correspondence and signification of water will teach you the correspondence and meaning of the rite of baptism. It is a sign that the person baptized then enters into the church; and it is a sign that he enters into a church which may supply him with truths that will wash away sins from his soul, as water washes away the uncleanliness of the body. Sin is the

« PoprzedniaDalej »