PIETY (pt. 4)

The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine
Emanuel Swedenborg
Doctrinal Series
PIETY
(pt. 4)

As to what relates to the renunciation of the world: it is believed by many, that to renounce the world, and to live in the spirit and not in the flesh, is to reject worldly things, which are chiefly riches and honors; to be continually engaged in pious meditation concerning God, concerning salvation, and concerning eternal life; to lead a life in prayers, in the reading of the Word and pious books; and also to afflict one’s self: but this is not renouncing the world;

But to renounce the world is to love God and to love the neighbor; and God is loved when man lives according to His commandments, and the neighbor is loved when man performs uses. Therefore in order that man may receive the life of heaven, it is altogether necessary that he should live in the world, and in offices and business there. A life abstracted from worldly things is a life of thought and faith separate from the life of love and charity, in which life the will of good and the doing of good to the neighbor perishes. And when this perishes, spiritual life is as a house without a foundation, which either sinks down successively, or becomes full of chinks and cracks, or totters till it falls.

That to do good is to worship the Lord, appears from the Lord’s words:

Everyone who heareth My words and doeth them, I will liken to a prudent man who built a house upon a rock; but he who heareth My words and doeth them not, I will liken to a foolish man who built a house upon the sand, or upon the ground without a foundation (Matt. 7:24-27; Luke 6:47-49).

Hence now it is manifest, that a life of piety so far avails, and is accepted by the Lord, as a life of charity is conjoined to it; for this is the primary, and such as this is, such is that. Also, that external sanctity so far avails, and is accepted by the Lord, as it proceeds from internal sanctity for such as this is, such is that. And also, that the renunciation of the world so far avails, and is accepted by the Lord, as it is practiced in the world; for they renounce the world who remove the love of self and the world, and act justly and sincerely in every office, in every business, and in every work, from an interior, thus from a heavenly origin; which origin is in that life when man acts well, sincerely, and justly, because it is according to the Divine laws.

(The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine 126-128)
In the manuscript, the author, Emanuel Swedenborg, annexed to each section of the doctrine extracts from the  Arcana Coelestia, because in the  Arcana Coelestia the same things are more fully explained.  Arcana Coelestia is available in print or online.
Advertisements
Posted in Christian, Church, Emanuel Swedenborg, Spirituality | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

PIETY (pt. 3)

The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine
Emanuel Swedenborg
Doctrinal Series
PIETY
(pt. 3)

External sanctity is like such piety, and especially consists in this that man places all Divine worship in sanctity when he is in temples; but this is not holy with man unless his internal be holy; for such as man is as to his internal, such he also is as to his external, for this proceeds from the former as action does from its spirit; wherefore external sanctity without internal sanctity is natural and not spiritual.

Hence it is that external sanctity is given with the evil as well as with the good; and they who place the whole of worship therein are for the most part empty; that is, without the knowledges of good and truth. And yet goods and truths are the real sanctities which are to be known, believed and loved, because they are from the Divine, and thus the Divine is in them.

Internal sanctity, therefore, consists in loving good and truth for the sake of good and truth, and justice and sincerity for the sake of justice and sincerity. So far also as man thus loves them, so far he is spiritual, and also his worship, for so far also he is willing to know them and to do them; but so far as man does not thus love them, so far he is natural, and his worship also, and so far also he is not willing to know them and do them.

External worship without internal may be compared with the life of the respiration without the life of the heart; but external worship from internal may be compared with the life of the respiration conjoined to the life of the heart.

(The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine 125)
In the manuscript, the author, Emanuel Swedenborg, annexed to each section of the doctrine extracts from the  Arcana Coelestia, because in the  Arcana Coelestia the same things are more fully explained.  Arcana Coelestia is available in print or online.
Posted in Christian, Church, Emanuel Swedenborg, Religion, Spirituality | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

PIETY (pt. 2)

The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine
Emanuel Swedenborg
Doctrinal Series
PIETY
(pt. 2)

Piety consists in thinking and speaking piously, in devoting much time to prayers, in behaving humbly at that time, in frequenting temples and harkening devoutly to the preaching there, in frequently every year receiving the Sacrament of the Supper, and in performing the other parts of worship according to the ordinances of the church.

But the life of charity consists in willing well and doing well to the neighbor, in acting in every work from justice and equity, from good and truth, and in like manner in every office; in a word, the life of charity consists in performing uses.

Divine worship primarily consists in this life, but secondarily in the former; wherefore he who separates one from the other, that is, who lives the life of piety, and not at the same time the life of charity, does not worship God. He thinks indeed of God, but not from God but from himself, for he thinks continually of himself, and nothing of the neighbor; and if he thinks of the neighbor, he holds him in low estimation, if he be not also such as himself. And likewise he thinks of heaven as a reward, thence in his mind there is merit, and also the love of self, as also contempt or neglect of uses, and thus of the neighbor, and at the same time he cherishes a belief that he is blameless.

Hence it may appear that the life of piety, separate from the life of charity, is not the spiritual life which should be in Divine worship.

But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him. (Matt. 6:7, 8.)

(The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine 124)
In the manuscript, the author, Emanuel Swedenborg, annexed to each section of the doctrine extracts from the  Arcana Coelestia, because in the  Arcana Coelestia the same things are more fully explained.  Arcana Coelestia is available in print or online.
Posted in Christian, Church, Emanuel Swedenborg, Religion, Spirituality | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

PIETY (pt. 1)

The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine
Emanuel Swedenborg
Doctrinal Series
PIETY
(pt. 1)

It is believed by many, that spiritual life, or the life which leads to heaven, consists in piety, in external sanctity, and in the renunciation of the world; but piety without charity, and external sanctity without internal sanctity, and a renunciation of the world without a life in the world, do not constitute spiritual life; but piety from charity, external sanctity from internal sanctity, and a renunciation of the world with a life in the world, constitute it.

(The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine 123)
In the manuscript, the author, Emanuel Swedenborg, annexed to each section of the doctrine extracts from the  Arcana Coelestia, because in the  Arcana Coelestia the same things are more fully explained.  Arcana Coelestia is available in print or online.
Posted in Christian, Church, Emanuel Swedenborg, Spirituality | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

FAITH (pt. 11)

The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine
Emanuel Swedenborg
Doctrinal Series
FAITH
(pt. 11)

They who are in persuasive faith do not know, from any internal enlightenment, whether the things which they teach be true or false; yea, neither do they care, provided they be believed by the common people; for they are in no affection of truth for the sake of truth. Wherefore they recede from faith, if they are deprived of honors and gains, provided their reputation be not endangered.

For persuasive faith is not inwardly with man, but stands without, in the memory only, out of which it is taken when it is taught.

Wherefore also that faith with its truths vanishes after death; for then there remains only that faith which is inwardly in man, that is, which is rooted in good, thus which has become of the life.

They who are in persuasive faith are meant by these in Matthew:

Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied by Thy name, and by Thy name cast out demons, and in Thy name done many virtues? But then I will confess to them, I have not known you, ye workers of iniquity (7:22, 23).

Also in Luke:

Then will ye begin to say, We have eaten before Thee, and have drunk, and Thou hast taught in our streets; but He will say, I say to you, I have not known you whence you are; depart from Me all ye workers of iniquity (13:26, 27).

They are meant also by the five foolish virgins who had no oil in their lamps, in Matthew:

At length came those virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us; but He answering will say, Verily I say unto you, I have not known you (Matt. 25: 11, 12).

“The oil in the lamps” is the good of love in faith.

(The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine 118-119)
In the manuscript, the author, Emanuel Swedenborg, annexed to each section of the doctrine extracts from the  Arcana Coelestia, because in the  Arcana Coelestia the same things are more fully explained.  Arcana Coelestia is available in print or online.
Posted in Christian, Church, Emanuel Swedenborg, faith | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

FAITH (pt. 10)

The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine
Emanuel Swedenborg
Doctrinal Series
FAITH
(pt. 10)

Faith is persuasive, when the Word and the doctrine of the church are believed and loved, not for the sake of truth and of a life according to it, but for the sake of gain, honor, and the fame of erudition, as ends – wherefore they who are in that faith, do not look to the Lord and to heaven, but to themselves and the world.

They who in the world aspire after great things, and covet many things, are in a stronger persuasion that what the doctrine of the church teaches is true than they who do not aspire after great things and covet many things: the reason is, because the doctrine of the church is to the former only a means to their own ends –

and so far as the ends are coveted, so far the means are loved, and are also believed.

But the case in itself is this: so far as they are in the fire of the loves of self and of the world, and from that fire speak, preach, and act, so far they are in that persuasion, and then they know no other than that it is so; but when they are not in the fire of those loves, then they believe little, and many not at all.

Thence it is evident, that persuasive faith is a faith of the mouth and not of the heart, thus that in itself it is not faith.

(The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine 117)
In the manuscript, the author, Emanuel Swedenborg, annexed to each section of the doctrine extracts from the  Arcana Coelestia, because in the  Arcana Coelestia the same things are more fully explained.  Arcana Coelestia is available in print or online.
Posted in Christian, Emanuel Swedenborg, faith, New Church | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

FAITH (pt. 9)

The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine
Emanuel Swedenborg
Doctrinal Series
FAITH
(pt. 9)

To believe those things which the Word teaches, or which the doctrine of the church teaches, and not to live according to them, appears as if it were faith, and some also assert that they are saved by it; but by this alone no one is saved, for it is persuasive faith (the quality of which shall be stated in the upcoming articles).

(The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine 116)
In the manuscript, the author, Emanuel Swedenborg, annexed to each section of the doctrine extracts from the  Arcana Coelestia, because in the  Arcana Coelestia the same things are more fully explained.  Arcana Coelestia is available in print or online.
Posted in Christian, Church, Emanuel Swedenborg, faith | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment