1 Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel,
Thou that leadest Joseph like a flock;
Thou that sittest above the cherubim, shine forth.
2 Before Ephraim and Benjamin and Manasseh, stir up
And come to save us.
3 Turn us again, O God;
And cause thy face to shine, and we shall be saved.
4 O Jehovah God of hosts,
How long wilt thou be angry against the prayer of thy
1-4, 8. Prayer of the new church to the Lord to come and lead, P. P.
2 That the shepherd of the flock is one who does the good of charity every one may know, for it is a familiar figure of both the Old Testament and the New. He who leads and teaches is called a shepherd, and they that are led and taught are called the flock. A. 343.
Dwelling within the cherubim is the Lord as to a state of providence, lest any one should enter into the holy things of love and faith unless prepared by the Lord. A. 3384.
2 See Psalm xviii. n. A. 9509.
See Psalm xviii. 10, 11. Add: By cherubs is signified the ultimate of Divine truth as a guard. S. 97.
By the cherubs the Divine truth in the ultimates as a guard is signified. R. 239.
See Psalm xviii. 10, 11. T. 260.
See Psalm xviii. 10, 11. Add: Since the subject treated of in this chapter is the arrangement of all things for judgment, therefore also the cherubim is treated of, that is the guard and providence of the Lord that the superior heavens may not be approached unless by the good of love and of charity, for unless this had been done before the judgment, the very heavens themselves, where the true angels were, would have been endangered. E. 277. See Psalm xxiii. 6. E. 662.
2, 3. Here also Joseph is the spiritual man. Ephraim, Benjamin, and Manasseh, are the three constituents of that church. A. 3969.
Benjamin signifies in the original language the son of the right hand. By this is signified spiritual truth which is from celestial good, and the power therefrom. Here also Benjamin is the spiritual of the celestial. A. 4592.
See Psalm lx. 8, 9. A. 5354.
From the spiritual sense of the words it is evident that they contain a supplication to the Lord to instruct those who are of the church, and to lead them by truths to good, thus to heaven. The Lord is called the shepherd of Israel because He instructs and leads. By Joseph are understood those of the church who are in truths derived from good. Thou that dwellest between the cherubim, signifies the Lord above the heavens, whence He sends forth the light which enlightens the minds of angels and men, hence it is added, “shine forth.” That the light of truth may penetrate even to those who are in natural truths and good, thus to the ultimates or lowest in the church is signified by, “before Ephraim and Benjamin and Manasseh stir up thy strength.” By Ephraim are understood those who are in natural truth, such as the truth of the Word in the literal sense. By Manasseh those who are in natural good, which is the delight of doing good and learning truth, by Benjamin the connecting principle of good and truth, or the conjoining medium in the natural. By stirring up strength is understood to penetrate with light even to the natural. That they should be saved is signified by, “come and save us.” E. 440.
By Joseph is signified the spiritual church, which exists with those who are in truths derived from good, that is in truths of doctrine as to life. E. 448.
By Ephraim, Benjamin, and Manasseh are understood those who are in natural truth and good, and in the conjunction thereof. E. 449
R-355 A. 5585 A. 9306 A. 10579 R. 939 E. 412
5 Thou hast fed them with the bread of tears,
And given them tears to drink in large measure.
6 Thou makest us a strife unto our neighbors;
And our enemies laugh among themselves.
5-7. because they are in affliction. P. P
7 Turn us again, O God of hosts;
And cause thy face to shine, and we shall be saved.
8 Thou broughtest a vine out of Egypt:
Thou didst drive out the nations, and plantedst it.
9 Thou preparedst room before it,
And it took deep root, and filled the land.
10 The mountains were covered with the shadow of it,
And the boughs thereof were like cedars of God.
n. It sent out its branches unto the sea,
And its shoots unto the River.
12 Why hast thou broken down its walls,
So that all they that pass by the way do pluck it ?
8, 9. Here also the Lord is spoken of, who is called a vine out of Egypt in relation to the knowledges in which He was instructed. A. 1462.
9, 10. In the supreme sense the Lord is meant, the vine out of Egypt is truth from outward knowledges, driving out the nations is purging of evils, sweeping before it is making ready that goods may fill. A. 3142.
Man is born natural, becomes rational and afterwards spiritual; and thus the vine out of Egypt is planted and takes root. R- 503-
9-12. He has instituted a church and reformed it by truths from the Word. P. P.
9 et seq. Mizraim or Egypt in the Word signifies external knowledges or various matters of knowledge wherewith men would explore the mysteries of faith, and thereby confirm received principles of falsity. It also signifies simply knowledges, and so such as are useful. A. 1165. 9-12, 14 The vine out of Egypt in the supreme sense stands for the Lord, the glorification of His human being described by it and its branches. In the internal sense the vine is here the spiritual church, and the man of that church, such as he is when made new or regenerated by the Lord as to the intellectual and voluntary. The boar in the wood is the falsity, and the wild beasts of the field are the evil which destroy the church as to faith in the Lord. A. 51 13.
9, 10, 12. By the vine out of Egypt is signified the church, which the sons of Israel represented. By driving out the nations is signified to expel the evils of the natural man, which are expelled by truths. Planting it, purging before it and causing its roots to take root signifies instruction according to order, namely, the imbibing scientifics and knowledges, then the being as in a wilderness and tempted, and afterwards introduced into the land of Canaan, which is the church. Sending out the shoots thereof under the sea signifies the increase of intelligence, and the extension thereof to the ultimates of good and truth appertaining to the church. Sending .out the little branches unto the river signifies unto the rational. By the river — Euphrates — is signified the rational. E. 654.
9, 11. See Psalm xxxvi. 7. R. 336.
By the vine brought out of Egypt is signified the spiritual church, which commences with man by scientifics and knowledges in the natural man. The vine signifies the spiritual church, and Egypt the scientifics, which are in the natural man. After evils were thence ejected the establishment of the church took place, the heathen stand for evils, to plant the vine the establishment of the church. The whole church was from spiritual good and truths, the mountains spiritual goods, and the goodly cedars spiritual truths. It is evident that by these words are understood the bringing forth of the children of Israel out of Egypt and their introduction into Canaan. E. 405.
9, 12. The river Euphrates stands for the faculties of sense and knowledge. The Euphrates was the boundary of Asshur, to which the dominion of Israel extended — as knowledge in the memory is the boundary of the intelligence and wisdom of the spiritual and celestial man. A. 120.
A vine out of Egypt stands for the spiritual church, represented by the sons of Israel, to the sea and to the river for interior truths and goods. A. 9341. By the vine are understood the children of Israel who are called a vine because they represented the spiritual church, which is signified by a vine in the Word. Their tarrying in Egypt represented their initiation into the things of the church, for Egypt represents the scientifics subservient to the things of the church. The extension of the intelligence of the church even to things scientific and rational is signified by sending out her boughs and branches, the sea the scientific, the river — Euphrates — the rational, sending out multiplication and extension. E. 518.
The foregoing statement partly repeated in E. 569. 12.
By rivers is signified truths in abundance. R. 409.
13 14. And yet falsities begin to destroy it. P. P.
13 The boar out of the wood doth ravage it,
And the wild beasts of the field feed on it.
14 By wild beasts are signified the affections of the false arising from the delights of the loves of self and of the world. These affections are also represented by wild beasts, as by panthers, tigers, wild boars, wolves, bears in the other life. A. 9335.
See Psalm viii. 7-9. R. 567.
By a vine here is signified the same as by a vineyard, namely, the church as to truth, which is called the spiritual church. Its vastation by the lusts and falsities of the natural man separated from the spiritual, is understood by the boar out of the wood wasting it, and the wild beast devouring it. The boar signifies the evil lusts of the natural man, and the wild beast of the field falsities. E. 355.
By wild beasts in the opposite spiritual sense are signified lusts of the false from evil, and by birds the thoughts and reasonings thence. Since the man of the church thereby spiritually perishes, therefore everywhere in the Word where the vastation of the church is treated of, it is said that they shall be given to the wild beasts and the birds to be devoured. E. 650.
15, 16. See Psalm xx. 7. A. 8281.
14 Turn again, we beseech thee, O God of hosts:
Look down from heaven, and behold, and visit this
15 And the stock which thy right hand planted,
And the branch that thou madest strong for thyself.
16 It is burned with fire, it is cut down:
They perish at the rebuke of thy countenance.
17 Let thy hand be upon the man of thy right hand,
Upon the son of man whom thou madest strong for
18 So shall we not go back from thee:
Quicken thou us, and we will call upon thy name.
19 Turn us again, O Jehovah God of hosts;
Cause thy face to shine, and we shall be saved.
15-20. May the Lord come and restore it, and may it thus be vivified. P. P.
15, 16, 18. David spake these words concerning himself and concerning the church, which is the sense of the letter, for he understood himself by the shoot and by the son, but in the spiritual sense by the vine and by the shoot which Jehovah planted is signified the spiritual church, represented by the sons of Israel. By the son whom He made strong for himself is signified the truth of doctrine from the Word. By verse 18 is signified the truth of the Word in the natural sense, which is the sense of the letter, and the same in the spiritual sense, which is the internal sense. E. 724.
16, 18. By the right hand is meant omnipotence. T. 136.
17 See Psalm xiii. 2. R. 939.
See Psalm xxxiv. 17. E. 412.
18 The man of the right hand of Jehovah, and the son of man stand for the Lord as to Divine truth. A. 8281.
Here the hand of Jehovah stands for guard from omnipotence and omniscience, the man of the right hand for whom there is such a guard stands for the wise, and the son of man for the intelligent, both by Divine truth. E. 298.
18, 19. See Psalm xliv. 4. A. 10019.
18-20. The man of the right hand here also is the Lord as to the Word, so too is the Son of Man. L. 27.
Author: EMANUEL SWEDENBORG (1688-1772)