Arcana Coelestia (Elliott) n. 1857

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1857. 'For the iniquity of the Amorites has not yet come to a close' means the final period when there is no longer any good. This is clear from the meaning of 'the Amorite', and also from the meaning of 'a close'. 'Amorite' in the Word means evil in general, the reason being that the land of Canaan is called 'the land of the Amorites', as is clear in Ezek 16:3, 4, and Amos 2:9, 10. Here therefore 'the Amorite' means all the nations of the land of Canaan, by whom were meant, as stated already, evils and falsities specifically. Consequently 'the Amorite' means all evils in general. 'The close' means that final period when there is no good any longer.

[2] But what is meant in the internal sense by the statement that 'the iniquity of the Amorites has not yet come to a close' is an arcanum. The experience of the evil in the next life is that they are not punished until their evils have reached their peak; this applies to evils both in general and in particular. Indeed the balance of everything in the next life is such that evil punishes itself, that is, those who are evil run into the punishment of their evil, but only when this evil has reached its peak. Every evil has its own limits - varying from one individual to another - beyond which it is not allowed to go. When one who is evil goes beyond it he meets head on with punishment. This is so in every particular case.

[3] The same applies in general, in that those who are evil thrust themselves down into hell, not instantaneously but gradually. This has its origin in the universal law of order established by the Lord that the Lord never sends anyone down into hell but that evil itself, or the person himself who is evil, thrusts himself down, doing so gradually, until evil has reached its close and no trace of good is any longer apparent. As long as there is some trace of good he is being raised up from hell, but when there is nothing but evil, he is thrust down into hell. Good and evil must first of all be separated from each other since they are opposites. No one is allowed to incline in both directions. This is what is meant by 'the iniquity of the Amorites having to come to a close'. With the good however it is different; they are constantly being raised up by the Lord towards heaven, while their evil is gradually wiped away.

[4] It is similar with the state of the Church: visitation does not come until evil has reached a close, that is, when good of charity and truth of faith exist no longer. That close is referred to quite often in the Prophets, as in Isaiah,

A close and a settlement I have heard from the Lord Jehovih Zebaoth over all the earth. Isa 28:22.

In Jeremiah,

O Babel, you who dwell on many waters, great in treasures, your end has come, the measure of your gain. Jer 51:13.

In Daniel,

Seventy weeks have been decreed concerning your people and your holy city to bring transgression to a close and to seal up sins and to atone for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up vision and prophet, and to anoint the Most Holy Place. Dan 9:24.
At length upon the bird of abominations will come desolation, until a closing and settlement is poured out upon the devastation. Dan 9:27.

[5] The Lord Himself too foretells the close in these words in Luke,

They will fall by the edge of the sword, and will be led captive among all the gentiles,a and at length Jerusalem will be trodden down by the gentiles' until the times of the nations are fulfilled. Luke 21:24.

'Falling by the edge of the sword' means from falsities, for 'a sword' in the Word is the punishment of falsity. 'Jerusalem' stands for the Lord's kingdom and the Church, 402, 'the gentiles' for evils, 1260. Thus the meaning is that 'the close' has been reached when the Church has become possessed by evils and falsities, and so has been destroyed by its own self.


a or the nations

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