DAVID >> The Lord
That the sense of the letter of the Word is representative of Divine arcana, and that it is the receptacle and thus the repository of the Lord’s celestial and spiritual things, may be illustrated by two examples: first, that by “David” is not meant David, but the Lord; second, that the names signify nothing but actual things, and therefore it must be the same with all the rest of the Word. Concerning David it is said in Ezekiel:
My servant David shall be king over them, and they shall all have one shepherd; they shall dwell upon the land, they and their sons and their sons’ sons, even to eternity; and David my servant shall be their prince to eternity (Ezek. 37:24-25).
And in Hosea:
The sons of Israel shall return, and shall seek Jehovah their God, and David their king (Hos. 3:5).
These things were written by the prophets after the time of David, and yet it is plainly said that he shall be their king and prince, from which all may see that in the internal sense it is the Lord who is meant by “David.” And the case is the same in all other passages, even those which are historical, where David is named.
 That the names of kingdoms, regions, cities, and men, signify actual things, may be clearly seen in the Prophets. Take merely this example in Isaiah:
Thus said the Lord, Jehovih Zebaoth, O My people, thou inhabitant of Zion, be not afraid of Asshur; he shall smite thee with a rod, and shall lift up his staff upon thee in the way of Egypt. Jehovah of Armies shall stir up a scourge for him according to the plague of Midian at the rock of Horeb; and as His rod was upon the sea, so shall He lift it up in the way of Egypt. He shall come against Aiath, He shall pass over to Migron, at Michmash shall He command His arms; they* shall pass over Mabarah; Geba* is a lodging-place for us; Ramah* shall tremble; Gibeah of Saul shall flee; cry aloud with thy voice, O daughter of Gallim; hearken, O Laish; O thou poor Anathoth; Madmenah shall wander; the inhabitants of Gebim shall gather themselves together; as yet there is a day for a stand at Nob; the mountain of the daughter of Zion, the hill of Jerusalem, shall shake her hand; He shall cut down the thickets of the forest with iron, and Lebanon shall fall by a magnificent one (Isa. 10:24, 26-34).
 Here there is almost nothing but names, from which no sense would appear unless all the names signified actual things; and if the mind were to abide in the names, this would never be acknowledged to be the Word of the Lord. But who will believe that in the internal sense they all contain arcana of heaven? and that by them is described the state of those who are endeavoring to enter into the mysteries of faith by reasonings from memory-knowledges? Some special thing belonging to that state are described by each name; and that the meaning is that these reasonings are dispersed by the Lord by means of the celestial things of love and the spiritual things of faith. That the reasoning here treated of is signified by “Asshur,” may be clearly seen from what has been already shown concerning Asshur (n. 119, 1186); also that memory-knowledges are signified by “Egypt” (n. 1164, 1165, 1462); which see and examine. The case is the same with all other names, and also with all the several words. [AC 1888]
The Latin had transibit, Gibea, Chormah: but in the Doctrine of the Holy Scripture, n. 15, we find transibunt, Geba, and Ramah, like the Hebrew. [Rotch. ed.] He that hath the key of David, signifies who has power by means of Divine truth. This is evident from the signification of “key,” as being the power of opening and shutting, here heaven and hell, for it follows, “He that openeth and no one shutteth, and shutteth and no one openeth;” therefore “key” means here the power of saving (as above, n. 86), since to open heaven and to shut hell is to save. It is evident also from the representation of “David,” as being the Lord in respect to Divine truth. By “David” in the Word the Lord is meant, because by “kings” in the Word the Lord in respect to Divine truth is represented, and by “priests” there the Lord in respect to Divine good. The Lord is represented especially by king David, because David had much care of the matters of the church, and also wrote the Psalms. (That “kings” in the Word signify Divine truth, and “priests” Divine good, see above, n. 31; moreover, that all names of persons and places in the Word signify spiritual things, which are the things pertaining to the church and to heaven, see above, n. 19, 50, 102.)
It is said, “He that hath the key of David,” because David (as was just said) represented the Lord in respect to Divine truth, and the Lord has all power in the heavens and on earth from Divine good through Divine truth; for in general good without truth has no power, neither has truth without good any power, for good acts through truth. From this it is that Divine good and Divine truth proceed united from the Lord, and so far as they are conjointly received by the angels, so far the angels are powers. This then, is why it is said “the key of David.” (That all power is in truths from good, see in the work on Heaven and Hell, n. 228-233, where the Power of the Angels of Heaven is treated of; also n. 539.)  That by “David” in the Word the Lord is meant is clearly evident from certain passages where he is mentioned in the prophets. As in Ezekiel:
They shall be to Me for a people, and I will be to them for a God, and My servant David king over them, that they may all have one shepherd. They shall dwell upon the land, they and their sons and their son’s sons even to eternity; and David My servant shall be prince to them to eternity (Ezek. 37:23-25).
The sons of Israel shall return, and shall seek Jehovah their God, and David their king; and with fear shall they come to Jehovah and to His goodness in the extremity of days (Hosea 3:5).
It is said “They shall seek Jehovah their God, and David their king,” because “Jehovah” in the Word means the Lord in respect to Divine good, which is the Divine Esse, and “David a king” means the Lord in respect to Divine truth, which is the Divine Existere. (That “Jehovah” in the Word means the Lord in respect to Divine good, see Arcana Coelestia, n. 732, 2586, 2807, 2822, 3921, 4253, 4402, 7010, 9167, 9315.)
 In Zechariah:
Jehovah shall save the tents of Judah first, that the glory of the house of David, and the glory of the inhabitant of Jerusalem, may not exalt itself above Judah. In that day shall Jehovah defend the inhabitant of Jerusalem, and the house of David shall be as God, and as the angel of Jehovah before them. And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitant of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace. In that day there shall be a fountain open to the house of David, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem (Zech. 12:7-8, 10; 13:1).
Here the Lord’s coming is treated of, and the salvation at that time of those who are of His spiritual kingdom. “Tents of Judah” mean the celestial kingdom; and the “house of David and the inhabitant of Jerusalem,” the spiritual kingdom. The spiritual kingdom is constituted of those in heaven and on earth who are in Divine truth, and the celestial kingdom of those who are in Divine good (see just above, n. 204). From this it can be seen what these words mean, namely, that these two kingdoms shall act as one, and that one shall not exalt itself above the other. (Of these two kingdoms, see in the work on Heaven and Hell, n. 20-28). That “Judah” signifies the Lord in respect to celestial love and the Lord’s celestial kingdom may be seen above (n. 119). And that “Jerusalem” signifies the Lord’s spiritual kingdom, see in The Arcana Coelestia (n. 402, 3654, 9166). The same is therefore signified by “the house of David;” consequently it is here said, “the house of David shall be as God, and as the angel of Jehovah;” “God” also means the Lord in respect to Divine truth (see Arcana Coelestia, n. 2586, 2769, 2807, 2822, 3921, 4287, 4402, 7010, 9167); and the like is meant by the “angel of Jehovah” (see above, n. 130, 200).  “David” and his “house” have a like signification also in the following passages. In Isaiah:
Incline your ear, and come unto Me; hear, and your soul shall live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David. Behold I have given Him as a witness to the peoples, a prince and a lawgiver to the nations* (Isa. 55:3-4).
These things are said of the Lord, who is here “David.” In David:
In the heavens Thou shalt establish Thy truth; I have made a covenant with My chosen; I have sworn to David My servant, even to eternity will I establish thy seed, and will build up thy throne to generation and generation; and the heavens shall confess Thy wonder, O Jehovah; Thy truth also in the congregation of the saints (Ps. 89:2-5).
These things also were said of the Lord, and not of David; for it is said, “I have sworn to David My servant, even to eternity will I establish thy seed, and will build up thy throne to generation and generation;” this is not applicable to David, whose seed and throne were not established to eternity, and yet Jehovah swore, and an oath from Jehovah is irrevocable confirmation from the Divine (see Arcana Coelestia, n. 2842). The “seed of David” in the spiritual sense, means those who are in the truths from good from the Lord, and in an abstract sense, truths themselves that are from good (see Arcana Coelestia, n. 3373, 3380, 10249, 10445); and “throne” means the Lord’s spiritual kingdom (see Arcana Coelestia, n. 5313, 5922, 6397, 8625). David is called “My servant” (as also above in Ezekiel 37:23-25), because “servant” in the Word is used of every person and every thing that serves and ministers (see Arcana Coelestia, n. 3441, 7143, 8241), and Divine truth proceeding serves and ministers to Divine good from which it proceeds. That it is the Lord in respect to Divine truth, or Divine truth proceeding from the Lord that is meant by “David,” is evident, for it is said, “In the heavens Thou shalt establish Thy truth, and the heavens shall confess Thy truth in the congregation of the saints.” That those also are called “saints” who are in Divine truths, see just above (n. 204).
 In the same: I will not profane My covenant, and what is pronounced by My lips will I not change. Once have I sworn by My holiness; I will not lie unto David. His seed shall be to eternity, and his throne as the sun before Me. It shall be established as the moon to eternity, a faithful witness in the clouds (Ps. 89:34-37).
That these things are said of the Lord is evident in the whole Psalm, for it treats of His coming, and afterwards of the repudiation of Him by the Jewish nation. That the Lord is here treated of, and that He is here meant by “David” is plain from these words in the same Psalm:
I have found David, My servant; with the oil of My holiness have I anointed him. I will set his hand also in the sea, and his right hand in the rivers. He shall call Me, Thou art my Father, my God, and the rock of my salvation. I also will make him the firstborn, high above the kings of the earth. I will set his throne as the days of the heavens (Ps. 89:20, 25-27, 29).
The Lord is meant also by “David,” by “the anointed,” and by “king,” in other passages in the Psalms, as can be clearly seen by those who understand the Word spiritually, but obscurely by those who understand it only naturally. As in these words in David:
Thy priests shall be clothed with righteousness, and Thy saints shall shout for joy for Thy servant David’s sake turn not away the face of Thine anointed. There will I make the horn of David to bud: I will set in order a lamp for Mine anointed; upon himself shall his crown flourish (Ps. 132:9-10, 17-18);
here also the Lord is meant by “David” and by “the anointed;” for the Lord is treated of in this Psalm, as is clear from what goes before, where it is said:
He swore unto Jehovah, I will not give sleep to mine eyes until I find out a place for Jehovah, habitations for the mighty One of Jacob. Lo, we have heard of it at Ephrathah [Bethlehem]. We will come into His habitations, we will worship at His footstool (Ps. 132:2, 4-7).  That David might represent the Lord in respect to Divine truth, the Lord was willing to be born of the house of David, and also to be called “the Son of David,” “his Root and Offspring,” also “the Root of Jesse.” But when the Lord put off the human from the mother, and put on the Human from the Father, which is the Divine Human, He was no longer David’s son. This is meant by the Lord’s words to the Pharisees:
Jesus said to the Pharisees, How does it seem to you respecting Christ? whose Son is He? They said unto Him, David’s. He said unto them, How then doth David in spirit call Him Lord, saying, The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou at My right hand, until I place thine enemies as a stool of thy feet? If David then calleth Him Lord, how is He his Son (Matt. 22:42-45; Luke 20:41-44).
That the Lord glorified His Human, that is, put off the human from the mother, and put on a Human from the Father, which is the Divine Human, see in the Doctrine of the New Jerusalem (n. 293-295, 298-310). For this reason He was not David’s son, as He was not the son of Mary, whom therefore He did not call His mother, but “woman” (Matt. 12:46-49; Mark. 3:31 to the end; Luke 8:19-21; John 2:4; 19:25, 26). The like is meant by “the key of Peter,” as by “the key of David,” namely, that the Lord has all power, and that He has this power through His Divine truth, as will be seen in the article that now follows. [AE 205]
The Latin has “nations,” the Hebrew “peoples,” as found also in Arcana Coelestia, n. 1259, 4197.
Author: EMANUEL SWEDENBORG