Page:A Compendium of the Theological Writings of Emanuel Swedenborg.djvu/149

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THE DOCTRINE OF THE LORD.

were in what is their own were not in good anil truth. These temptations are the inmost of all; for they act only upon ends, and with such subtlety as to escape all observation. But in so far as the angels are not in what is their own they are in good and truth, and cannot tempt. Moreover the angels are continually being perfected by the Lord, and yet can by no means, to eternity, be so far perfected that their wisdom and intelligence can be compared to the Divine wisdom and intelligence of the Lord; for they are finite, and the Lord is infinite, and there is no comparison of the finite with the infinite. (A. C n. 4295.)

 

How THE Lord bore the Iniquities of All.

It is known in the Church that it is said of the Lord that He carried sins for the human race, but it is yet unknown what is meant by carrying iniquities and sins. By some it is believed it means, that He took upon Himself the sins of the human race, and suffered Himself to be condemned even to the death of the cross; and that thus, because damnation for sins was cast upon Him, mortals were liberated from damnation; and also that damnation was taken away by the Lord through the fulfilling of the law, since the law would have condemned every one who did not fulfil it. But these things are not meant by carrying iniquity, since every man's deeds remain with him after death, and he is then judged either to life or death according to their quality; and they therefore cannot be taken away by transfer to another who carries them. Hence it is evident that something else is meant by carrying iniquities. And what is meant may be seen from the carrying itself of iniquities or of sins by the Lord; for the Lord carries them when He fights for man against the hells. For man of himself cannot fight against them; but this the Lord alone does, even continually for every man,—but with a difference according to the reception of Divine good and Divine truth. When the Lord was in the world He fought against all the hells, and entirely subdued them. Hence He was also made Justice. He thus redeemed from damnation those who receive Divine good and truth from Him. If this had not been done by the Lord no flesh could have been saved; for the hells are continually with man, and so far as the Lord does not remove them they have dominion over him; and He removes them in proportion as man desists from evils. He who once conquers the hells conquers them to eternity; and that this might be accomplished by tho Lord He made His Human Divine. He therefore who alone fights for man against the hells,—or what is the same, against evils and