NINE >> Conjunction
/ Opposite Sense >> Lack of Conjunction due to lack of Faith and Charity
Abram was a son of ninety years and nine years. That this signifies the time before the Lord had fully conjoined the internal man with the rational, is evident from the signification of "nine" when regarded as coming before ten; or what is the same, of "ninety-nine" before a hundred, for Abram was a hundred years old when Isaac was born to him. The nature of the internal sense of the Word may be seen in an especial manner from the numbers, as well as from the names, that occur in the Word; for the numbers therein, whatever they may be, signify actual things, as do the names also; for there is absolutely nothing in the Word that has not what is Divine within it, or that does not possess an internal sense; and how remote this is from the sense of the letter is especially manifest from the numbers and the names; for in heaven no attention is given to these, but to the things that are signified by them. For example, whenever the number "seven" occurs, instead of seven there at once comes to the angels what is holy, for "seven" signifies what is holy, and this from the fact that the celestial man is the "seventh day," or "Sabbath," and thus the Lord's "rest" (n. 84-87, 395, 433, 716, 881). The case is similar with the other numbers, as for example with twelve. Whenever "twelve" occurs, there comes to the angels the idea of all things that belong to faith, for the reason that these were signified by the "twelve tribes" (n. 577). That in the Word numbers signify actual things, may be seen demonstrated in Part First (n. 482, 487, 488, 493, 575, 647, 648, 755, 813, 893).
 The case is the same with the number "ninety-nine;" and that this number signifies the time before the Lord had fully conjoined the internal man with the rational, is evident from the signification of a "hundred years," which was Abram's age when Isaac was born to him; for by Isaac is represented and signified the Lord's rational man that is conjoined with His internal man, that is, with the Divine. In the Word, a "hundred" signifies the same as "ten," for it is formed by the multiplication of ten into ten and "ten" signifies remains (as shown in Part First, n. 576). What the remains in man are, may be seen above (n. 468, 530, 561, 660, 1050), also what the remains in the Lord were (n. 1906). These arcana cannot be set forth further, but everyone may form a conclusion on the subject after he has first made himself acquainted with what remains are (for what they are is at this day unknown), provided it be known that in the Lord's case remains mean the Divine goods that He procured for Himself by His own power, and by means of which He united the Human Essence to the Divine Essence.
 From all this we may see what is signified by "ninety-nine," for this number, because it precedes a hundred, signifies the time before the Lord had fully conjoined the internal man with the rational. In the Lord's case, the first rational was represented by Ishmael; and the nature of this rational has been sufficiently shown above (in the preceding chapter 16). But by Isaac is represented the Lord's Divine rational, as will appear in what follows. From Abram's staying so long in the land of Canaan (now twenty-four years, that is, ten years before Ishmael was born, and thirteen years after that) without his as yet having a son by his wife Sarai, and from the promise of a son being first given when he was ninety-nine years old, everyone can see that some arcanum is involved. The arcanum was, that he might thereby represent the union of the Lord's Divine Essence with His Human Essence; and in fact the union of His internal man, which is Jehovah, with His rational. [AC 1988].
And shall Sarah that is a daughter of ninety years bear? That this signifies that truth conjoined with good will do this, is evident from the representation and signification of "Sarah", as being truth conjoined with good, that is, truth Divine; and from the signification of the number "ninety", or what is the same, of "nine". One cannot but wonder that the number "a hundred years", which was Abraham's age, signifies that the rational of the Lord's Human Essence should be united to His Divine Essence; and that the number "ninety years", which was Sarah's age, signifies that truth conjoined with good would do this. But as there is nothing in the Lord's Word which is not heavenly and Divine, so must it be with the very numbers contained in it. It was shown that in the Word all numbers whatever signify actual things, equally as do all the names (n. 482, 487, 488, 493, 575, 647, 648, 755, 813, 893, 1988).
 Now that the number "nine" signifies conjunction, and still more the number "ninety", which is the product of the multiplication of nine into ten (for "ten" signifies the remains by which conjunction is effected, as is evident from what was said above, n. 1988, at the end), may also be seen from the representatives and significatives which now follow. It was commanded that on the tenth day of the seventh month there should be a day of expiations, and that this should be a Sabbath of a Sabbath; and on the ninth day of the seventh month at evening, from evening even to evening, they should celebrate a Sabbath (Lev. 23:27, 32).
 In the internal sense these things signify conjunction by means of remains - "nine" signifying conjunction, and "ten" signifying remains. That a Divine arcanum lies hidden in these numbers, is clearly evident from the months and the days of the year that were to be held holy; as that every seventh day there was a Sabbath; and that every seventh month, as just stated, there should be a Sabbath of a Sabbath; in like manner the seventh year; and also that on the seven times seventh year the jubilee should commence. The case is the same with all other numbers in the Word; as with "three", the signification of which is nearly the same as that of "seven;" and with "twelve", which signifies all things of faith; and with "ten", which signifies the same as "tenths", that is, remains (n. 576); and so on. Thus in the passage here quoted from Leviticus, unless the number "ten" and the number "nine" involved arcana, it would by no means have been commanded that this Sabbath of a Sabbath should be on the tenth day of the seventh month, and that on the ninth of the month they should celebrate it. Such is the Word of the Lord in the internal sense, although in the historical sense nothing of the kind appears.
 In the same way it is related of Jerusalem that it was besieged by Nebuchadnezzar in the ninth year of Zedekiah, and that a breach was made in the eleventh year, on the ninth day of the month; concerning which we read as follows in the second book of Kings: -
It came to pass in the ninth year of the reign of Zedekiah, in the tenth month, in the tenth of the month, came Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon against Jerusalem, and the city was besieged until the eleventh year of king Zedekiah on the ninth of the month the famine prevailed in the city, and there was no bread for the people of the land, and a breach was made in the city (2 Kings 25:1, 3, 4).
By the "ninth year" and the "tenth month", and by the "eleventh year" and the "ninth of the month", when the famine prevailed in the city and there was no bread for the people of the land, is signified in the internal sense that there was no longer any conjunction by means of the things of faith and of charity; "famine in the city and no bread for the people of the land", signifies that there was nothing of faith and nothing of charity left. This is the internal sense of these words, which does not at all appear in the letter; and such things shine forth from the historical portions of the Word still less than from the prophetical, because the histories so captivate the mind that it is scarcely believed that anything deeper lies hidden within; when yet all things are representative, and the words themselves are everywhere significative. These things are hard to believe, but still they are true (n. 1769-1772). [AC 2075]
And He said, I will not destroy it if I find there forty and five. That this signifies that man should not perish if good and truth could be conjoined together, is evident from the signification of the number forty-five, as being conjunction. It has been already shown that the simple numbers retain their signification even when they are multiplied; and that consequently the greater numbers have a signification similar to that of the less and such is the case with forty-five, which number is compounded by the multiplication of five into nine; and as it has been compounded by the multiplication of five into nine, it has the same signification as have "five" and "nine". That "five" signifies a little, was shown above (n. 649), and that "nine" signifies conjunction, or what is conjoined (n. 2075); and thus the signification here is: If goods have in some measure been conjoined with truths. That in the Word numbers signify actual things, or states, is evident from what was said about fifty (n. 2252); also from what has been shown before concerning numbers (n. 482, 487, 575, 647, 648, 755, 813, 1963, 1988).
 It is because "five" signifies a little, and "forty-five" conjunction, that the very setting forth of these numbers in this verse is of such a nature, for it is said, "Peradventure there shall lack five of the fifty righteous;" and by this is signified, If there should be somewhat less; and then it is said, "Wilt Thou destroy all the city for five?" by which is signified, Shall they perish for the little which is wanting? for as "five" signifies a little, this number is not employed again, but it is said, "I will not destroy it if I find there forty and five;" by which is signified that they would not perish if good and truth could be conjoined together. The reason also of its being said here "forty and five", and not "if there lack five of fifty", is because "five" not only signifies a little (n. 649), but also signifies disjunction (n. 1686); and therefore in order that not disjunction, but conjunction, might be signified, this number forty-five is named; for " forty-five" denotes some conjunction, as stated above; and thus in the internal sense all things follow on in a beautiful sequence Of their own.
 As regards the conjunction of good with truth, it is an arcanum which cannot be described so that it can be grasped by the ordinary comprehension. It must be told in a few words. The more genuine and pure the truth, the better can the good which is from the Lord be adapted into it as its recipient vessel; but the less genuine and pure the truth, the less can the good which is from the Lord be adapted into it; for they must correspond to each other, and the conjunction of the two is effected according to the correspondence. Goods cannot possibly be insinuated into falsities, nor evils into truths, as their recipient vessels; for they are of a contrary character and nature, the one casting out the other as its enemy; nay, should they attempt to conjoin themselves together, the one would spew out the other, that is to say, good would spew out evil as if it were poison, and evil would spew out good as if it were an emetic. Such enmity between good and evil has been provided by the Lord in order to prevent the possibility of their being commingled, for if they were commingled, the man would perish. In the deceitful and in hypocrites they are not far from being conjoined together, but still precautions are taken by the Lord in order to prevent their being so conjoined. This is the reason why in the other life those who are deceitful and those who are hypocrites suffer things more direful than those which are suffered by any others.
2106. Abraham was a son of ninety and nine years. That this signifies the state and time before the union of the Lord's Divine Essence with His Human Essence, is evident from the signification of "ninety-nine years", as being the time before the Lord fully conjoined the internal man with the rational (n. 1988). The Lord's internal man, as already shown, was Jehovah Himself, that is, the Divine itself; which, when it was united to the Human, was united to the rational; for the human begins in the inmost of the rational, and extends itself thence to man's external. [AC 2269]
Author: EMANUEL SWEDENBORG (1688-1772)