Arcana Coelestia (Elliott) n. 10143

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10143. 'A continual burnt offering' means all Divine worship in general. This is clear from the meaning of 'a burnt offering' as Divine worship, dealt with below; and from the meaning of 'continual' as all and within all, dealt with above in 10133, so that 'a continual burnt offering' means all Divine worship in general. And when the lamb - of which the burnt offering consisted, and which means the good of innocence - is understood, this too means within all worship; for all worship that is truly worship must spring from the truths of faith and from forms of the good of love, and within every form of the good of love, and consequently within every truth of faith, the good of innocence must be present, 10133. This is the reason why 'a continual burnt offering' also means within all worship.

[2] 'A burnt offering' means Divine worship because burnt offerings and sacrifices were the chief features of the representative worship among the Israelite and Jewish nation, and all things relate to and take their name from their chief feature. As regards the chief feature of the worship among that nation, that it lay in sacrifices and burnt offerings, and that for this reason the whole of worship in general is meant by them, see 922, 1343, 2180, 6905, 8680, 8936, 10042.

[3] But what the Divine worship meant by sacrifices and burnt offerings is must be stated briefly. In particular sacrifices and burnt offerings have meant purification from evils and falsities, and at the same time implantation of goodness and truth, also the joining together of the two, thus regeneration, see 10022, 10053, 10057. With the person in whom these things have been accomplished true worship exists. It does so because purification from evils and falsities consists in refraining from them, steering clear of them, and loathing them; the implantation of goodness and truth consists in thinking and willing what is good and what is true, and in speaking and doing them; and the joining together of the two consists in leading a life composed of them. For when the good and truth residing with a person have been joined together his will is new and his understanding is new, consequently his life is new. When this is how a person is, Divine worship is present in every deed he performs; for at every point the person now has what is Divine in view, respects and loves it, and in so doing worships it.

[4] The fact that this is the true worship of God is unknown to those who think that all worship consists in acts of adoration and prayer, thus in such things as belong to the mouth and thought, and not in such as belong to deeds flowing from the good of charity and the good of faith. Yet the reality is that in a person offering adoration and prayer the Lord pays attention solely to his heart, that is, to what he is like inwardly so far as love and consequently faith are concerned. If therefore the adoration and prayer do not have these two within them they have no soul and life in them; they are an outward show, like that of toadies and pretenders, who, as is well known, do not even please anyone in this world who is wise.

[5] In short, acting in accord with the Lord's commandments constitutes true worship of Him, indeed constitutes true love and true faith, as may also become clear to anyone who stops to consider the matter. For there is nothing that a person who loves another, and who believes in another, would rather do than to will and to do what that other wills and thinks; his only desire is to know his will and thought, and so what is pleasing to him. It is different in the case of one who has no such love or belief. The situation is similar with love to God, as the Lord also teaches in John,

He who has My commandments and does them, he it is who loves Me. But he who does not love Me does not keep My words. John 14:21,24.

And elsewhere in the same gospel,

If you keep My commands, you will remain in My love. This is My commandment, that you love one another. John 15:10,12.

[6] The fact that the outward performance of worship without this inner devotion is not worship is also meant by what is said about burnt offerings and sacrifices in Jeremiah,

I did not speak with your fathers on the matters of burnt offering and sacrifice. But this matter I commanded them, saying, Obey My voice, and I will be your God. Jer 7:21-23.

In Hosea,

I desire mercy and not sacrifice, and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings. Hosea 6:6.

In Micah,

Shall I come before Jehovah with burnt offerings? Will Jehovah be pleased with thousands of rams? He has shown you what is good; and what does Jehovah require of you but to carry out judgement, and to love mercy, and to humble yourself by walking with your God? Micah 6:6-8.
In the first Book of Samuel,

Has Jehovah great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices? Behold, to be submissive is better than sacrifice, to be obedient better than the fat of rams. 1 Sam 15:22.

Worship of the Lord consists first and foremost in a charitable life, and not in a religious life without it, see 8252-8257.

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