Charity and Good Works (pt. 55a)

Selection from True Christian Religion ~ Emanuel Swedenborg
Charity and Good Works (pt. 55a)
v Doctrinal Series v
XVII. THE FRIENDSHIP OF LOVE AMONG THE EVIL
IS INTESTINE HATRED OF EACH OTHER

Among those confirmed in evil, such as thieves, robbers, and pirates, friendship is intimate so long as they are with one mind bent on acquiring plunder; for they then embrace each other like brothers, enjoy themselves with feasting, singing, and dancing, and conspire to destroy others; yet each one within himself regards his companion as one enemy regards another; this, too, is what a cunning robber sees and fears in his fellow. Evidently, therefore, among such there is no friendship, but intestine hatred.

Any man who has not openly connected himself with evildoers and committed robberies, but has led a civil moral life for the sake of various uses as ends, and yet has not curbed the lust residing in his internal man, may suppose that his friendship is not of such a nature. Nevertheless, from many exemplifications in the spiritual world, it has been granted me to know with certainty that it is such, in different degrees, with all who have rejected faith and despised the holy things of the church, regarding those as nothing to them, but only for the common herd. In some of these the delights of infernal love have lain hidden like fire in smoldering logs covered with bark; in some like coals under ashes; in some like waxen torches that blaze up when fire is applied to them; and in others in other ways. Such is every man who has rejected from his heart the things of religion. The internal man of such is in hell; but being ignorant of this because of their pretended morality in externals so long as they live in the world they acknowledge no one as their neighbor except themselves and their own children; they regard others either with contempt and then they are like cats lying in wait for birds in their nests or with hatred, and then they are like wolves when they see dogs that they may devour. These statements are made to show from its opposite what charity is.

(True Christian Religion 455 Ibid)

To be continued . . .

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About mike

The Lord is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last, and from the human race, an angelic heaven would be formed. The reason for my creation was to perform Divine uses - The Divine Providence looks to eternal ends. My gain, honor or reputation no longer could be the focal point of what drives the engine. One day I will lay aside this material body and will wake up in the spiritual world never to return; there will be a continuation of life, and my ruling love will be what guides me to my final situation. 'Where a tree falls, there will it lay' (Ecc 11:3) We only have a few years in these bodies compared to eternity. What is fossilized on our souls in this short period is important to how we spend eternity. We are not left to blind faith, The Lord has come in His Word to reveal rationally how we can be made 'a vessel of honor, able for the master's use.' I truly hope the post create a thirst. If I can be of service, please do not hesitate to email me. --Mike
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