1 THE Word which Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.
2 It shall come to pass in the last days; the mountain of the house of Jehovah shall be established all the head of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills: and all nations shall flow unto it.
VERSES 1-3. The Word of Jehovah upon Judah and Jerusalem; &c.- These words relate to the New Church to be established by the Lord; by the “mountain of Jehovah” which shall then be established “on the head of the mountains,” is understood Zion; and by ” Zion” is signified the celestial church, and love to the Lord, which is communicated to those who belong to that church. That this is the primary principle of the church, and that it shall increase and gain strength, is signified by its being “on the head of tho mountains, and exalted above the hills.” That they who are principled in the good of love shall acknowledge the Lord, and accede to the church, is signified by “all nations shall bow together to that mountain;” “nations” signifying those who are in celestial good, which is the good of love to the Lord; and “peoples,” those who are in spiritual good, which is the good of charity towards the neighbour. Concerning these latter it is also said-“Many peoples shall go, and shall say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of Jehovah; to the house of the God of Jacob.” That “nations” signify those who are in celestial good, and “peoples,” those who are in spiritual good, see above, n. 331. A. E. 433.
3 And many peoples shall go, and shall say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of Jehovah; to the house of the God of Jacob : and He will teach us of His ways; and we will walk in His paths: for from Zion shall go forth the law, and the Word of Jehovah from Jerusalem.
4 And He shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many peoples: and they shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and their spears into pruning-hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.
5 O house of Jacob, come ye, and let us walk in the light of Jehovah!
6 For Thou hast abandoned Thy people, the house of Jacob: because they are filled from the East, and are soothsayers like the Philistines; and they abound in the children of strangers.
Verses 3-5. These things are spoken concerning the advent of the Lord, and show that they who will be of His New Church are to be instructed in truths, whereby they will be led to heaven. By the “mountain of Jehovah, and the house of the God of Jacob,” is signified the church in which is love to the Lord and worship from that love; convocation to that church, and thereby to the Lord is signified by “many peoples going and saying, Come ye, and let us go up to that mountain;” that they will be instructed in truths, by which they will be led, is signified by “He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in His paths;” “ways” denoting truths, and “paths” the precepts of life. That they will be taught by the doctrine of the good of love, and by the doctrine of truth from that good, which is for the church out of heaven from the Lord, is signified by “out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the Word of Jehovah from Jerusalem;” the “law out of Zion” denoting the doctrine of the good of love, and the “Word from Jerusalem.” truth from that good. That then evils of life and falses of doctrine. shall be dissipated, is signified by ” He they shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many peoples;” “nations” denoting those who, are in evils, and’ “peoples” those who are in falses; thus, abstractedly, evils of life and falses of doctrine; that then, by the consent of all, combats shall cease, is signified by “they shall beat their swords into, ploughshares, and their spears into pruning-hooks;” “swords” and “spears” denoting falses from evils combating against truths from good, and vice versa; “ploughshares” denote the goods of the church cultivated by truths, for a “field,” which is tilled by the plough, denotes the church as to the good of life; “pruning-hooks denote truths of doctrine, by reason that “trees” in gardens signify perceptions and knowledges of truth; similar things are signified by “nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more ;”war” signifying combats in every complex. That they shall live a life of wisdom, is signified by ” Come ye, and let us walk in the light of Jehovah;” the “light of Jehovah” denoting the Divine Truth and to “walk in it,” to live according thereto, thus in a life of wisdom. That “war ” here signifies spiritual war, which is of falsities against truths and goods, and vice versa, and that “swords” and “spears,” which are arms of war, signify such things as are used in spiritual combats, is evident, for the subject treated of is concerning the Lord, and concerning the church to be established by Him, also concerning the doctrine for that church; wherefore it is said –“He shall teach us concerning His ways, and we will walk in His paths;” Iikewise.-“Come ye, and let us ‘walk In the light of Jehovah!”
A. E. 734.
7 For Thou hast abandoned Thy people, the house of Jacob: because they are filled from the East, and are soothsayers like the Philistines; and they abound in the children of strangers.
Verse 6. Because they are filled from the East.-That by the “east,” or by the “east wind,” are signified, in a bad sense, those things which are of lusts and phantasies, is evident from those passages in the Word where the “east” and the “east wind” are mentioned, as in David,-” He caused an east wind to blow in the heaven, and by His power He brought in the south wind; He rained flesh also upon them as dust, and fowls of wing like as the sand of the sea.” (Psalm lxxviii. 26, 27.) That by “flesh,” which that wind brought, is signified concupiscences or lusts, and by “fowls of wing” phantasies thence derived, is evident from Moses. (Numb. xi. 31-35.) Compare also other passages, as Ezekiel xvii. 10; xix. 12; Hosea xii. 1; xiii. 15; Psalm xlviii. 7; Isaiah ii. 6. A.C. 5215.
The “sons of strangers” signify those who are out of the church, and do not acknowledge the Lord; also those who are in evils and the falses of evil, and abstractedly they denote false principles adverse to the truths of the church. A. C. 1012, 10,287.
7 And his land is filled with silver and gold, and there is no end to his treasures; and his land is filled with horses, and there is no end to his chariots.
8 And his land is filled with idols; they bow themselves down each to the work of his hands, to that which his fingers have made.
9 And his land is filled with idols; they bow themselves down each to the work of his hands, to that which his fingers have made.
Verses 7, 8. His land is filled with silver and gold, horses and chariots, and idols.-[Signifies that in such a corrupt state of the church, and of the human mind, as is here described, there may be abundance of good and truth in appearance, and also of intelligence and of doctrinals, but only in the external man, not in the internal, still less from the Lord.]
Filled with idols, &c.-In the Word we often read of “sculptured and molten images” and “idols.” Those who only understand the Word as to the letter, think that only idols are understood thereby. Idols, however; are not understood thereby, but false doctrines, such as are formed by man himself, when led to do so by some selfish or worldly love. The formation of these false dogmas, so that they may cohere together, and appear as true, is signified by a “graven image;” and their conjunction and application to the favour of the love or desires of the external man, so that evils may appear as goods, is signified by a “molten image.” This will be evident from cousulting the following passages:-Isaiah ii.20; xxx.22; xl. 19, 20; xliv. 9-14. A.C. 10,406.
10 Therefore shall the [mean] man be bowed down, and the [mighty] man shall be humbled; and Thou wilt not forgive them.
11 Enter into the rock, and hide thyself in the dust, from before the terror of Jehovah, and from the glory of His majesty.
12 The eyes of man’s loftiness shall be humbled; the height of men shall bow down; and Jehovah alone shall be exalted in that day.
Verses·10-21. Enter into the rock, and hide thyself in the dust, from before the terror of Jehovah, &c.-What is meant by all these things cannot possibly be understood except Irom the internal sense, and from a knowledge of the appearance of things in tho spiritual world; for without the internal sense, who could know what is signified by “the day of Jehovah being upon the cedars of Lebanon, and the oaks of Bashan, upon the mountains and hills, upon the tower and wall, and upon the ships of Tarshish, and the images of desire;” and what is meant by ” [casting the idols of his silver and gold, which each made for himself to worship], to moles and to bats;” and without a knowledge of the appenrance of things in the spiritual world, who could know what is meant by “entering into the rock, and hiding themselves in the dust,” “entering into the caverns of rocks, and into holes of the dust,” likewise” into the caves of the rocks, and the clefts of the craggy rocks;” but, from the internal sense, it is known that by all these things is described the state of those who are in the love of self and of the world, and thence in evils and falses at the time of the Last Judgment.
It is therefore said that “the day of Jehovah shall be upon every one that is magnificent and lofty, and upon every one that is lifted up and low,” [humilem, see note]; the” day of Jehovah” denoting the Last Judgment; “every one magnificent and lofty,” those who are in the love of self and the world; and the” lifted up and low,” those who are in the love of self-derived intelligence. This is further described by “the day: of Jehovah being upon all cedars high and exalted, and upon all the oaks of Bashan, and upon all lofty mountains and high hills, upon every high tower and fortified wall, and upon all the ships of Tarshish, and images of desire.” By the “cedars of Lebanon and the oaks of Bashan” is signified the pride of self-derived intelligence,-interior pride by the “cedars of Lebanon,” and exterior pride by the “oaks of Bashan;”: by the “mountains and hills” are signified the loves of self and of the world; and the evils and falses thence derived, as was shewn above, n. 405; by the “tower and wall” are signified falses of doctrine confirmed; by the “ships of Tarshish and images of desire” are signified the knowledges and perceptions of the falses from evils. Their worship from evils and falses is signified by “the idols which they made for themselves to bow down to,” and by” the moles and the bats ;” worship grounded in such things as are from self-derived intelligence is signified by “the idols they made for themselves to bow down to; and the evils and falses of doctrine in which their worship is grounded, are slgnIfied by “the moles and the bats,” because the sight of these animals is in darkness, and they shun the light. Judgment upon them is described by “They shall enter into the caverns of rocks, and into the holes of the dust,” likewise “into the caves of the rocks, and into the clefts of the craggy rocks ;” and by “entering into the caverns of rocks and holes of the dust,” is signified the damnation of those who are in evils and falses originating in the love of self and of the world, and in the pride of self-derived intelligence, for the hells of such appear as “caverns in rocks,” and the entrances to them as the “caves of rocks, and clefts of craggy rocks.” “rocks and craggy rocks” [petrae et rupesJ also signify the falses of faith and of doctrine, and “dust” signifies what is cursed or damned. A. E. 410.
12 For the day of Jehovah of Hosts is upon everyone magnificent and lofty, and upon everyone that is exalted; and he shall be humbled ;
13 And upon all the cedars of- Lebanon, the high and the exalted; and upon all the oaks of Bashan ;
14 And upon all the lofty mountains, and upon all the high hills;
Verses 12-17. -By the “day of Jehovah” is understood the advent of the Lord, when the Last Judgment was accomplished by Him; that this was accomplished by the Lord, when He was in the world, may be seen in the work on the Last Judgment, n. 46. In this passage, those within the church upon whom Judgment was executed, are recounted; by the “cedars of Lebanon, high and exalted” are signified those who boast themselves from self-derived intelligence; and by the “oaks of Bashan, “those who boast from science; for “cedars,” in the Word, are predicated of the rational man, and “oaks,” of the natural man; and intelligence belongs to the rational man, and science to the natural man. By ” the high tower and the fortified wall” are signified confirmed principles of the false, consequently all those who are in them. By the “Ships of Tarshish,” and by the “images’ of desire, are signified the false doctrinals favouring the delights of earthly loves. The destruction of conceit originating in self-derived intelligence and in scence, is understood by “the loftiness of man [homo] shall bow down, and the height of men [vir] shall be humbled;” that all intelligence and science is from the Lord, is signified by “Jehovah alone shall be exalted in that day.” It is supposed that science is from man, but science, so far as it serves for the attainment of intelligence in which is the perception of truth, is from the Lord alone. A. E. 514.
It is to be observed that all who are in the love of self, especially who are in the love of ruling, when they come into the spiritual world, are extremely desirous of elevating themselves into high places, this being implanted or inherent in that love; hence also to “be of a high and e!ated mind,” and to “aspire after high things,” are expressions used in common discourse, The real cause why there is such a desire or lust in the love of ruling is, because they who are principled therein, wish to make themselves gods, and God is in the highest. That “mountains” and “hills” signify those loves and the evils thereof, is evident from its being said that “the day of Jehovah Zebaoth shall be upon every one that is magnificent and lofty, and upon all the lofty mountains, and upon all the high hills:” to what purpose else could it be said that “the day of Jehovah should be upon mountains and hills”? A.E.405.
15 And upon every high tower, and upon every fortified wall;
16 And upon all the ships of Tarshish, and upon all images of desire.
17 And the loftiness of man shall bow down, and the height of men shall be humbled: and Jehovah alone shall be exalted in that day.
18 And the idols shall utterly pass away, [as in smoke].
Verse 15. That a “tower” here also denotes the worship of self, appears from the signification of a tower; the worship of self consisting in a man’s exalting himself above others, so as to be worshipped; therefore self-love, which is haughtiness and pride, is called “height,” “loftiness,” and “exaltation,” and is described by all those things which are high, as in Isaiah ii. 11-18. The reason why self-love in worship, or the worship of self, is called a “tower,” is, because a “city” signifies doctrine, and formerly cities were fortified with towers, in which were guards; towers also were built in the boundaries or confines of a country, wherefore they were called “towers of the guards, or watchmen.” Moreover, when the church of the Lord is compared to a “vineyard,” the things appertaining to worship and to the preservatIon thereof, are compared to a “wine-press and to a tower [in a good sense] in a vineyard,” as appears from Isaiah v. 1, 2; Matt. xxi. 23; Mark xii. 1. A.C.1306. [As to the further meaning of a “tower,” see below, chap. v. 2, Exposition.]
19 And they shall go into the caverns of rocks, and into holes of the dust, from before the terror of Jehovah, and from the glory? His majesty, when He ariseth to shake terribly the earth.
Verse 19: The reason why to “hide themselves in the caverns of rocks,” &c., signifies to be in evils, and in the faIses of evil, is, because they who in the sight of the world have pretended to be in the good of love, and yet were in evil, after death hide themselves in dens and caverns; and they who have pretended that they were in the truths of faith, and yet were in the falses of evils, hide themselves in rocks in the mountains.; the entrances appear like holes in the earth, and fissures in mountains, into which they crawl like serpents, and hide themselves there. That such places are inhabited by them, I have frequently seen. Hence it is that by “dens” or “caves,” are signified the evils in such, and by “holes and fissures,” or “clefts,” the falses of evil. In the .followIng passage:-Isaiah ii. 19, 21; vii 19; xxxii, 14; Jer. xvi. 16, 17; xlix, 16. A. R. 338.
20 In that day shall a man cast the idols of his silver, and the idols of his gold, which they have made each for himself to worship, to the moles and to the bats;
21 To go into caves of the rocks, and into clefts of the craggy rocks, from before the terror of Jehovah, and from the glory of His majesty, when He ariseth to shake terribly the earth.
22 Cease ye from man, whose breath is in his nostrils: for of what account is he to be made?
Verse 20. By “idols,” in the Word, are signified false [principles] of worship, and therefore to worship idols, signifies worship grounded in falses; and by “adoring idols of gold, of silver, of brass, of stone, and of wood,” is signified worship grounded in falses of all kinds, and taken collectively, worship grounded in mere falses; moreover, the materials of which idols were made, their forms, and their garments, among the ancients, represented falses of religion, in which their worship was grounded. ” Idols of gold” signified falses concerning things divine; “idols of silver,” falses concerning things spiritual; “idols of brass,” falses concerning charity; “idols of stone,” falses concerning faith; and “idols of wood,” falses concerning good works. In all these falses they are principled who do not do the work of repentance, that is, shun evils as sins against God. “Graven images” and “molten images,” which were idols, have this signification, in a spiritual sense, in the following passages:-” Every man is become foolish from science; every founder is made ashamed by the graven image: for his molten imaqe is a lie, neither is there breath in them; they are vanity, the work of errors; in the time of their visitation they shall perish.” (Jer. x. 14, 15; li. 17, 18. See also Jer. x. 3, 4, 5, 8, 9, 10.) A.R.459.
Author: Emanuel Swedenborg [Compiled by J. H. Smithson 1860]