Page:A Compendium of the Theological Writings of Emanuel Swedenborg.djvu/477

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THE SECOND COMING OF THE LORD.

is here meant; and not that according to the letter He will appear in the clouds. What now follows concerns the establishment of a New Church, which takes place when the old is vastated and rejected. "He shall send forth His angels with a trumpet and a great voice," signifies election; not that it is effected by visible angels, still less by trumpets and by great voices, but by an influx of holy good and holy truth from the Lord through the angels. Therefore angels in the Word signify something appertaining to the Lord; here things which are from the Lord and concerning the Lord. By a trumpet and a great voice evangelization is signified, as also elsewhere in the Word. "And they shall gather together the elect, from the four winds, from the end of the heavens even to the end of them," signifies the establishment of a New Church. The elect are they who are in the good of love and faith; the four winds, from which they shall be gathered together, are all states of good and truth; the end of the heavens even to the end of them are the internal and external things of the Church. These things then are what are signified by those words of the Lord. (A. C. n. 4060.)

 

This Second Coming of the Lord is not a Coming in Person, but in the Word, which is from Him, and is Himself.

It is written in many places that the Lord will come in the clouds of heaven; but as no one has known what was meant by the clouds of heaven, men have believed that He would come in them in Person. That the clouds of heaven mean the Word in the sense of the letter, and that the glory and power in which He will also then come mean the spiritual sense of the Word, has hitherto been hidden; because no one hitherto has even conjectured that there is any spiritual sense in the Word, such as this in itself is. Now, since the Lord has opened to me the spiritual sense of the Word, and has granted me to be in company with angels and spirits in their world, as one of them, it is disclosed that by the clouds of heaven the Word in the natural sense is meant, and by power the Lord's might through the Word. That the clouds of heaven have this signification may be seen from these passages in the Word:—"There is none like unto the God of Jeshurun, who rideth upon the heaven, and in His greatness upon the clouds" (Deut. xxxiii. 26); "Sing unto God, praise His name, extol Him who rideth upon the clouds" (Ps. lxviii. 5); "Jehovah rideth upon a swift cloud" (Isa. xix. 1).

That the Lord is the Word is very certain from these words in John: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God, . . . and the Word was made flesh"