palestinep_500_313 If I speak of our journeying to the heavenly Canaan, every one understands me to mean our progress towards a spiritual, heavenly state of life; for we all accept the Holy Land as a type of that life. (AR 285; AC 1413, 1585, 3686, 4447) We have already seen how the idea of heavenly life became associated with the land of Canaan. It was the home of heavenly people of the Golden and Silver Ages. Even the physical features of the land were formed to be representative of spiritual states, and were so understood by the wise people of those innocent ages, and by the angels. Palestine afterwards became the home of the children of Israel; for their story was to be a grand parable of spiritual life, and it was necessary that every name of mountain, or river, or town, which entered into that story should be full of heavenly meaning. This also was a reason why the land became the Lord's own home, that all names in the Gospels might be representative of heavenly things. (AC 5136, 6516, 10559)

The holiness of the land centers about one place, Jerusalem; the place which the Lord chose out of all the tribes, to put His name there; the place where the temple was built and towards which all the people looked in prayer. Jerusalem with the stronghold of Zion, and the temple, and the Mount of Olives standing guard above it, represents a state of peculiar nearness to the Lord. (AC 2534 end)  "They that trust in the LORD shall be as Mount Zion, which cannot be removed, but abideth forever. As the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so the LORD is round about his people from henceforth even forever." (Ps. cxxv. 1, 2; AE 405, 449, 629; AC 1585) The Bible often speaks of going up to Jerusalem and going down from Jerusalem. The words remind us that Jerusalem is one of the mountain towns upon the crest of land which forms the central mass of Palestine; but is there some deeper reason of this phrase,"going up to Jerusalem"? (AC 3084 4539)

From Jerusalem the ground slopes westward to the sea-shore plain of Philistia, and eastward breaks abruptly down into the deep valley of the Jordan, sunk far below the level of the sea. Should we expect to find that these low-lying districts bordering the sea and river represent states of life as interior as Jerusalem and the Mount of Olives?

We read, "A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves." (Luke x. 30). We go down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when we turn from a Sunday state to a week-day state; from an interior state of worship, to practice what we have learned in external, natural affairs. Do we not fall among thieves, who make us forget the truths we have learned and nearly destroy our spiritual life? (AE 458, 444, 584)

In this plain of Jordan, at the very lowest point in the land, the children of Israel entered when they came from Egypt, and from that low level climbed up into the hills which were to be their home. (Josh. iii. 16) It shows that our conquest must begin by making right the external things which are within our reach; these open the way to more interior victories. (AE 700; AC 1585, 9325) In this same region John the Baptist called the people to reform their outward life in preparation for the Lord who should lead them into interior things of heaven. (Matt. iii; TCR 677; AC 4255)

The sea-coast of Palestine was occupied by the Phoenicians whose home was Tyre and Sidon, and the Philistines who were a branch of the same people. The Phoenicians were sailors and traders. They brought home treasures from distant countries, and they served a good use in extending learning and other influences of civilization. (Ezek. xxvii) Here is another low-lying region on the extreme border of Canaan, one which was never really conquered. Must it represent an interior state of life, or an external one, in contact with the world? Do the situation on the sea-shore and the seafaring tastes of the people tell us anything of the state which the district represents? These are indications of a natural state, content with natural, worldly life, devoted especially to matters of natural knowledge. The activity of the Phoenicians as traders is representative of an active interest in becoming acquainted with people of all states, loving both to gather in and to impart all kinds of knowledge of life. Egypt represents the memory of knowledge; Assyria, the rational arrangement of knowledge; Phoenicia, the delight in acquiring and imparting knowledge. (AC 1201, 9340; AE 275, 576)

We read of Tyre: "Behold thou art wiser than Daniel; there is no secret that they can hide from thee; with thy wisdom and with thine understanding thou hast gotten thee riches, and hast gotten gold and silver into thy treasures; by thy great wisdom and by thy traffick hast thou increased thy riches." (Ezek. xxviii. 3-5; AC 2967; AR 759; AE 236, 840) We think of this faculty of gathering knowledge in its right place as a servant of the spiritual life, when we read of the friendly treatment of Abraham by the Philistines (Gen. xx.; AC 9340, 2504), and of Hiram's help to Solomon, in bringing treasure from distant countries, and in furnishing stones and cedars for the temple of the Lord. (1 Kings v., ix. 26-28; AE 514)

But Tyre and Sidon afterward used their gains to enrich the temples of their idols, and the Philistines were among the most persistent enemies. of the Israelites. This reminds us how easily we are made proud by learning, and forget to value it only as a help in good life. Read on in the passage from Ezekiel which we were quoting. "By thy great wisdom and by thy traffick hast thou increased thy riches, and thine heart is lifted up because of thy riches" (Ezek. xxviii. 5), and much more in the same chapter. This self-confident intellectual power opposing the spiritual life and defying the Lord, is typified by Goliath. (I Sam. xvii.; AE 242, 817; AC 2967)

We have looked from Jerusalem to the eastern and western borders of the Holy Land. We must think a little about the heart of the land and its divisions. Take a map which shows you the allotment of the land to the tribes, and consider the tribes in the order of the birth of Jacob's sons. (Gen. xxix. 32, to xxx. 24, xxxv. I6-I8) The twelve sons, considered in the order of their birth, represent the successive developments of heavenly life. (AC 3860-3862, 3939; AE 431; AR 349) First come childlike states, then states of maturer strength, and last of all the truly spiritual states. The first group of sons are Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah. These represent the childlike steps in regeneration; Reuben (which relates to sight), the first understanding of heavenly things; Simeon (hearing), obedience; Levi (adhering), love; Judah (confession), loving service of the Lord. All these of a simple, childlike kind. (AC 7231, 3875-3881; AE 434) The map shows you the allotments of Simeon and Judah together in the southern part of the land, with Reuben by their side, just across the border. Reuben's place outside suggests that the knowledge of heavenly things, which Reuben represents, is not in itself heavenly, but is introductory to obedience and loving service which are heavenly. In the lot of Reuben is Mount Nebo, from which Moses saw the promised land, but was told, "I have caused thee to see it with thine eyes, but thou shalt not go over thither." (Deut. xxxiv. 1-4) Remember that the tribes were permitted to dwell beyond Jordan only on condition that they would first help their brethren to gain possession of their inheritance. (Num. xxxii. 20-23; Josh. xxii. 1-6) The more natural states which they represent are good only as they take a secondary place, helpful to the spiritual life. (AE 440; AC 4117) What part of the land seems to have relation to innocent states of childlike affection? The southern part, where Simeon and Judah found their homes. You do not find an allotment marked with the name of Levi, for the Levites were scattered as priests through all the tribes (Josh. xxi); a suggestion that innocent love from the first heavenly states endures through all which follow, serving as a bond of union between them and the Lord. (AE 444)

After the first group of sons which represent the first, childlike steps in heavenly life, follow others which represent maturer states - states of rational development, of conflict, of victory, of joyful usefulness. There is Dan (the judge), a knowledge of the letter of the law. You find this tribe's final home in the extreme north of the land. Naphtali (strife), is next in order, suggesting states of spiritual strife, temptation. Then Gad (a troop), suggesting the youthful sense of power in our first labors; a self-confident and not very humble sense, as is suggested by the allotment to Gad beyond the border of the land. Next come Asher (happiness), and Issachar (reward); and as you trace the allotment of the tribes on the map you notice that Issachar received the rich plain of Esdraelon, the garden of the land. Then Zebulon (union), which suggests fullness of character resulting from the union of truth with good in faithful life. All these tribes which represent the maturer rational states of life have their homes together in the north. We must associate this part of the land with these states, as we associated the southern part with the innocent, childlike affection. (AC 3920-3961, 3971; AE 432-450; AR 349-359)

Two more sons remain, Joseph and Benjamin, the sons of Jacob's old age and his favorite children. They represent the truly spiritual state which is last attained-Joseph the love for the Lord which makes that state wise, and Benjamin the wisdom which gives that love expression. (AC 3969, 5469; AE 448, 449; AR 360, 361) We look on the map to find the homes of these tribes. Joseph is represented by his two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, the latter with a double inheritance on both sides of Jordan. Ephraim and Manasseh represent the two elements of practical intelligence and practical goodness, to which spiritual love for the Lord gives rise as it descends into life. (AC 6275, 6295) Manasseh on both sides of the river suggests that external goodness is pleasing to the Lord when it comes from a spiritual origin and is the companion of goodness within. (AE 440) But notice where the lots of Joseph and Benjamin fall. They fill the space between the northern group and the southern, till Benjamin comes back to the very border of Judah. Does it not remind us how a regenerating life after its strife and victory returns again to the innocent love of childhood, now made wise by experience? (AC 5411, 4585, 4592; AE 449)

And here in the lot of Benjamin, which means the wisdom and expression of spiritual love, is Jerusalem, where from the assembled people the united voice of prayer and praise ascended to the Lord. But as this state is not reached except through conflict, so Jerusalem did not become the center of government and worship till the victories of David were won. (AC 4592, 2909; AE 449; AR 361.)

Now, with the map still before you, let me ask two questions. After the days of Solomon the land was divided into two kingdoms, Israel and Judah. If we draw a line across the map just above Jerusalem, we have Israel to the north and Judah to the south. Remembering the spiritual states associated with the different parts of the land, what spiritual separation does this division of the kingdoms seem to represent? On the one side are the states of innocent childlike affection, together with that wise innocence which has become again as a little child; on the other side are the maturer states of rational power, of conflict and victory, and finally, practical intelligence and goodness from a spiritual origin. The line across the map perhaps suggests disagreement between childhood's innocence and the life of mature years. It suggests also the distinctness and the frequent conflict between the faculties of love and understanding in ourselves. In a broad sense the two kingdoms Israel and Judah represent the spiritual and celestial kingdoms of heaven. (AC 4292, 4750; AE 433; AR 96.)

Still with the map before you, recall the places where the Lord made His earthly home. Where was the Lord born? "In Bethlehem of Judaea." (Matt. ii. 5, 6.) We have already learned to associate this part of the land with childhood's innocent love. Does the place of the Lord's birth tell us of the state in which He was born? (AC 4592, 4594; AE 449.) We have thought of the journey into Egypt, as teaching us that the Lord as a child must learn in external ways, especially from the letter of the Word. (Chapter 38) Afterward, for nearly thirty years, His home was Nazareth, in the tribe of Zebulon. This tribe tells of the union of truth with good in, life. Does not the Lord's home in Nazareth through these quiet years, tell us that He was faithfully living the commandments and in so doing was bringing down into the world the Divine love of good? "By Zebulon in the highest sense is signified the union of the Divine itself and the Divine Humanity in the Lord." (AE 447; AR 359.) "And leaving Nazareth, he came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is upon the sea coast, in the borders of Zebulon and Nephthalim." (Matt. iv. 13, 14.) The coming down from the retired mountain home to the busy seashore, fitly expresses the change from silent, interior labor to outward manifestation of Divine power in miracles and in teaching. And what are we told about the states through which the Lord now was passing, by the fact that He made His home "in the borders of Zebulon and Nephthalim"? Naphtali means the strife by which evil was subdued, and Zebulon represents the heavenly marriage which was thus completed. (AE 439, 447; AR 354, 359) "And it came to pass. when the time was come that he should be received up, he steadfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem." (Luke ix. 51) We traced the circle of regeneration in a finite life, from childlike affection, through temptation and victory to the wisdom of spiritual love. So the Lord passed from the Divine innocence of Bethlehem, through the temptations and victories of Galilee to the glorification at Jerusalem, when His Humanity became the perfect revelation of Divine love. (AC 2534, 1585, 3084; AE 449)


pal1lestinew That by "Canaan," or "the Canaanite," when mentioned in the Word, are signified rituals, that is, the things of external worship separated from internal, is evident from very  many passages, especially in the historicals. Because the Canaanites were of this character at the time when the sons of Jacob were introduced into their land, it was permitted that they should be exterminated. But in the internal sense of the Word, all those are meant by "Canaanites" who have external worship separated from internal. And as the Jews and Israelites more than others were of this nature, they specifically are signified by "Canaanites" in the prophetical Word, as may be seen from these two passages only:

They have shed innocent blood, even the blood of their sons and of their daughters, whom they sacrificed unto the idols of Canaan; and the land was profaned with bloods, and they were defiled with their works, and went a whoring in their doings. (Ps. 106:38-39).

"To shed the blood of sons and daughters," here signifies in the internal sense that they extinguished all truths of faith and goods of charity; "to sacrifice sons and daughters to the idols of Canaan" signifies to profane the things which are of faith and charity by external worship separate from internal, which is nothing else than idolatrous. Thus were they defiled with their works, and went a whoring in their doings. In Ezekiel:

Thus saith the Lord Jehovih unto Jerusalem, Thy tradings and thy nativity is of the land of Canaan; thy father was an Amorite, and thy mother a Hittite (Ezek. 16:3).
Here they are plainly said to be of the land of Canaan. (That "Canaan" signifies external worship separated from internal may be seen above, n. 1078, 1094.) [AC1167]

The reason why "Jerusalem" means the church as to doctrine, is that there and at no other place in the land of Canaan were the temple and altar, the offering of sacrifices, and therefore the Divine worship; and for this reason the three yearly feasts were celebrated there, to which every male in the whole country was commanded to go. This is why "Jerusalem" signifies the church in respect to worship, and therefore as to doctrine-for worship is prescribed in doctrine, and is performed according to it. An additional reason is that the Lord was present in Jerusalem, and taught in its temple, and afterwards glorified His Human there. Besides, "city" in the spiritual sense of the Word signifies doctrine, and therefore "holy city" signifies the doctrine of Divine truth from the Lord. {16} That by "city" in the Word is signified the doctrine of the church and of religion, may be seen in (AC n. 402, 2449, 2943, 3216, 4492, 4493). That by the gate of a city is signified the doctrine by means of which there is entrance into the church (AC n. 2943, 4477, 4478). That on this account the elders sat in the gate of the city, and judged, ibid. That "to go out of the gate" is to fall back from doctrine (AC n. 4492, 4493). That in heaven cities and palaces are presented representatively when angels and spirits are conversing about doctrinal matters (AC n. 3216).

[2] That by "Jerusalem" is meant the church as to doctrine, is further evident from other passages in the Word, as from these:--

For Zion's sake I will not hold my peace, and for Jerusalem's sake I will not rest, until the righteousness thereof go forth as brightness, and the salvation thereof as a lamp that burneth. Then shall the nations see thy righteousness, and all kings thy glory and thou shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of Jehovah shall name; and thou shalt be a crown of ornament in the hand of Jehovah, and a kingdom's diadem in the hand of thy God for Jehovah shall delight in thee, and thy land shall be married. Behold, thy salvation cometh; behold, His reward is with Him and they shall call them the holy people, the redeemed of Jehovah and thou shalt be called, A city sought out, not forsaken (Isa. 62:1-4, 11, 12).

This whole chapter treats of the Lord's advent, and of a New Church to be set up by Him. This New Church is here meant by "Jerusalem called by a new name which the mouth of Jehovah shall name," and which shall be "a crown of ornament in the hand of Jehovah, and a kingdom's diadem in the hand of God," and in which Jehovah shall "delight," and which shall be called "a city sought out, not forsaken." These words cannot possibly mean the Jerusalem in which were the Jews at the time of the Lord's coming into the world, for that city was of a wholly contrary character, and might rather be called Sodom, as indeed it is called in (Rev. 11:8;Isa. 3:9; Jer. 23:14; Ezek. 16:46, 48).

[3] Again in Isaiah:--

Behold, I create a new heaven and a new earth, and the former shall not be remembered: be ye glad and rejoice to eternities in that which I create for behold I create Jerusalem a rejoicing, and her people a gladness, that I may rejoice over Jerusalem, and be glad over My people. Then shall the wolf and the lamb feed together; they shall not do harm in all the mountain of My holiness (Isa.65:17-19, 25).

This chapter also treats of the Lord's advent, and of a church to be set up anew by Him. This church was not set up anew among those who were in Jerusalem, but among those outside of it, so that it is this church which is meant by the Jerusalem that should be to the Lord a rejoicing, and whose people should be to Him a gladness, and where also the wolf and the lamb should feed together, and where they should do no harm. Here, too, it is said, just as in the Revelation, that the Lord will "create a new heaven and a new earth," the meaning being similar; and it is added that He will "create Jerusalem."

[4] In another place in Isaiah:--

Awake! awake! put on thy strength, O Zion; put on thy beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city, for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean. Shake thyself from the dust, arise, and sit down, O Jerusalem. My people shall know (cognoscet) My name in that day, for I am He that doth speak, behold it is I. Jehovah hath comforted His people; He hath redeemed Jerusalem (Isa.52:1, 2, 6, 9).

This chapter also treats of the Lord's advent, and of the church to be set up anew by Him; so that by the Jerusalem into which the uncircumcised and the unclean should no more come, and which the Lord should redeem, is meant the church; and by "Jerusalem the holy city," the church as to doctrine from the Lord.

[5] In Zephaniah:--

Shout, O daughter of Zion; be glad with all the heart, O daughter of Jerusalem; the King of Israel is in the midst of thee; fear evil no longer: He will be glad over thee with joy, He will rest in thy love, He will exult over thee with a shout: I will make you a name and a praise to all the people of the earth (Zephaniah 3:14-17, 20).

Here in like manner it treats of the Lord and of a church from Him, over which "the King of Israel" (who is the Lord) will be glad with joy, will exult with a shout, and in whose love He will rest, and whose members He will make a name and a praise to all people of the earth.

[6] In Isaiah:--

Thus saith Jehovah thy Redeemer, and thy Former, saying to Jerusalem, Thou shalt be inhabited; and to the cities of Judah, Ye shall be built (Isa.44:24, 26).

In Daniel:--

Know (Scito) and perceive that from the going forth of the word even to the restoring and the building up of Jerusalem, even to Messiah the Prince, shall be seven weeks (Daniel 9:25).

It is evident that here also "Jerusalem" means the church, because this was indeed restored and built by the Lord, but not the Jerusalem that was the residence of the Jews.

[7] "Jerusalem" means a church from the Lord in the following passages also. In Zechariah:--

Thus saith Jehovah, I will return to Zion, and I will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem whence Jerusalem shall be called the city of truth; and the mountain of Jehovah Zebaoth, the mountain of holiness (Zechariah 8:3, 20-23).

In Joel:--

Then shall ye know that I am Jehovah your God, dwelling in Zion, the mountain of holiness; and Jerusalem shall be holiness: and it shall come to pass in that day that the mountains shall drop new wine, and the hills shall flow with milk, and Jerusalem shall abide from generation to generation (Joel 3:17-20).

In Isaiah:--

In that day shall the shoot of Jehovah be for ornament and glory and it shall come to pass that he that is left in Zion, and he that remaineth in Jerusalem shall be called holy; even everyone that is written for life in Jerusalem (Isa.4:2, 3).

In Micah:--

In the latter days it shall come to pass that the mountain of the house of Jehovah shall be established in the head of the mountains; for doctrine shall go forth out of Zion, and the word of Jehovah from Jerusalem: unto thee shall come the former kingdom, the kingdom of the daughter of Jerusalem (Micah 4:1, 2, 8).

In Jeremiah:--

that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of Jehovah and all nations shall be gathered to the name of Jehovah to Jerusalem; neither shall they walk any more after the confirmation of their evil heart (Jer 3:17).

In Isaiah:--

Look upon Zion the city of our set feast; thine eyes shall see Jerusalem a quiet habitation, a tabernacle that shall not be scattered not one of the stakes thereof shall ever be removed, neither shall any of the cords thereof be plucked away (Isa.33:20).
Besides other passages (Isa. 24:23; 37:32; 66:10-14; Zech. 12:3, 6, 8, 9, 10; 14:8, 11, 12, 21; Mal. 3:1, 4; Ps. 122:1-7; 137:5, 6).

[8] That in these passages "Jerusalem" means the church which was to be set up anew by the Lord, and which actually was set up anew by Him, and not the Jerusalem in the land of Canaan that was inhabited by the Jews, is evident from those passages in the Word where it is said of the latter Jerusalem that it should utterly perish and be destroyed (Jer. 5:1; 6:6, 7; 7:17, 20; 8:5-7; 9:10, 11, 13; 13:9, 10, 14; 14:16; Lam. 1:8, 9, 15, 17; Ezek. 4:1-17; 5:9-17; 12:18, 19; 15:6-8; 16:1-23; 23:1-49; Matt. 23:33, 37, 39; Luke 19:41-44; 21:20-22; 23:28-30). [DL64]

That "Zidon" signifies exterior knowledges of spiritual things, is evident from the fact that it is called the "first-born of Canaan;" for the firstborn of every church, in the internal sense, is faith (n. 352, 367). But here, where there is no faith, because no internal things, there are nothing but exterior knowledges of spiritual things which are in the place of faith; thus knowledges such as existed among the Jews, which are knowledges not only of the rites of external worship, but also of many things, such as doctrinals, which belong to that worship. That this is the signification of "Zidon" is also evident from the fact that Tyre and Zidon were extreme borders of Philistia, and were moreover by the sea; and therefore by "Tyre" interior knowledges are signified, and by "Zidon" exterior knowledges, that is, of spiritual things-which is also evident from the Word. In Jeremiah:

On the day that cometh to lay waste all the Philistines, to cut off from Tyre and Zidon every helper that remaineth; for Jehovah will lay waste the Philistines, the remnant of the isle of Caphtor (Jer. 47:4).
Here "the Philistines" denote the mere memory-knowledge of the knowledges of faith and charity; "Tyre" denotes the interior knowledges, and "Zidon" the exterior knowledges, of spiritual things.

[2] In Joel:

What are ye to Me, O Tyre and Zidon, and all the borders of Philistia? Forasmuch as ye have taken My silver and gold, and have carried into your temples My desirable good things (Joel 3:4-5).
Here "Tyre and Zidon" evidently denote knowledges, and are called "the borders of Philistia;" "silver and gold," and "desirable good things," are knowledges. In Ezekiel:
The princes of the north, all of them, and every Zidonian who has gone down with the slain into the pit. When he has been made to lie in the midst of the uncircumcised, with them that are slain with the sword; Pharaoh and all his crowd (Ezek. 32:30, 32).
"The Zidonians" here denote exterior knowledges, which without internal things are nothing but memory-knowledges and therefore they are named in connection with Pharaoh, or Egypt, by whom memory-knowledges are signified. In Zechariah:
Hamath also shall be bordered thereon; Tyre and Zidon, because she was very wise (Zech. 9:2).
The subject here is Damascus; "Tyre and Zidon" denote knowledges.

[3] In Ezekiel:

The inhabitants of Zidon and of Arvad were thy rowers; thy wise men, O Tyre, were in thee, they were thy pilots (Ezek. 27:8).
Here "Tyre" denotes interior knowledges; wherefore her wise men are called "pilots;" and "Zidon" denotes exterior knowledges, and therefore her inhabitants are called "rowers;" for such is the relation of interior knowledges to exterior. In Isaiah:

Let the inhabitants of the isle be silent, the merchant of Zidon, that passes over the sea, they have replenished thee. And in great waters the seed of Sihor, the harvest of the river was her revenue, and she was the mart of nations. Be ashamed, O Zidon, for the sea hath spoken, the stronghold of the sea, saying, I have not travailed, nor brought forth, nor have I brought up young men, nor caused virgins to grow up (Isa. 23:2-4).
"Zidon" here denotes exterior knowledges, which, because there is nothing internal in them, are called "the seed of Sihor, the harvest of the river her revenue, the mart of the nations," and also "the sea," and "the stronghold of the sea;" and it is said that she doth not "travail and bring forth"-which could not be comprehended in the literal sense, but is all perfectly clear in the internal sense; as is the case with other passages in the Prophets. Because "Zidon" signifies exterior knowledges, it is said to be "a circuit about Israel," that is, around the spiritual church (Ezek. 28:24, 26); for exterior knowledges are like a circuit round about. [AC1201]

 Reuben Jacob's firstborn. That this signifies the good of faith, is evident from the signification of the "firstborn," as being faith (see n. 352, 367, 2435, 3325); and from the representation of Jacob as being the good of natural truth (see n. 4538); and from that of Reuben, as being the quality of faith. For "Reuben" in the genuine sense signifies the truth of faith (n. 3861, 3866); but after the truth of faith has been made good, he signifies the good of faith. Moreover, regarded in itself faith is charity, and thus regarded in itself the truth of faith is the good of faith, because faith is impossible except from charity, that is, truth is impossible except from good; and therefore when a man has been regenerated, good is in the first place, or is the firstborn (n. 3325, 3494). Hence it is that by "Reuben Jacob's firstborn" is here signified the good of faith. The like is signified also in Moses:

Let Reuben live and not die, and it shall be that his numbers are mortal (Deut. 33:6);

the reason why in this passage "Reuben" denotes the good of faith, is that he is put in the first place, and Judah in the second, thus in a different order in this prophecy of Moses respecting the sons of Israel from that in the prophecy of Jacob (Gen. 49), for as before said (n. 4603), the order in which they are named is determined in accordance with the state of the subject that is being treated of.

[2] In like manner in John:

I heard the number of the sealed, a hundred and forty-four thousand sealed out of every tribe. Of the tribe of Judah were sealed twelve thousand, of the tribe of Reuben were sealed twelve thousand, of the tribe of Gad were sealed twelve thousand (Rev. 7:4, 5);
here Judah is named in the first place, Reuben in the second, and Gad in the third. These three here constitute the first class, and as the Lord's kingdom is the subject treated of, "Judah" signifies celestial good such as is in the inmost or third heaven, "Reuben" spiritual good which is the same as the good of faith such as is in the second or middle heaven, and "Gad" the good of the natural such as is in the first heaven. But it is otherwise in the prophecy of Deborah and Barak:

The princes in Issachar were with Deborah, and as was Issachar so was Barak; into the valley he was sent at his feet, in the classes of Reuben were great decrees of heart; why dwellest thou between two burdens to hear the hissings of the droves? To the classes of Reuben were great searchings of heart (Judg. 5:15-16);

It is impossible to know the meaning of these words unless it is known what Issachar, Deborah, Barak, and Reuben represent; and what the "princes," the "valley," the "classes," the "decrees of heart," the "two burdens," and the "hissings of the droves," signify; but it is evident that "Reuben" here denotes faith.


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