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XIII. Regeneration

HD 173. He who does not receive spiritual life, that is, who is not begotten anew by the Lord, cannot come into heaven; which the Lord teaches in John:--

Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except anyone be begotten again, he cannot see the kingdom of God (John 3:3).

HD 174. Man is not born of his parents into spiritual life, but into natural life. Spiritual life consists in loving God above all things, and in loving his neighbor as himself, and this according to the precepts of faith, which the Lord has taught in the Word. But natural life consists in loving ourselves and the world more than the neighbor, yea, more than God Himself.

HD 175. Every man is born of his parents into the evils of the love of self and of the world. Every evil, which by habit has acquired as it were a nature, is derived into the offspring; thus it descends successively from parents, from grandfathers, and from great-grandfathers, in a long series backwards; whence the derivation of evil at length becomes so great, that the whole of man‘s own life is nothing else but evil. This continual derivation of evil is not broken and altered, except by the life of faith and charity from the Lord.

HD 176. Man continually inclines to, and lapses into, what he derives from heredity: hence he confirms with himself that evil, and also superadds more from himself. These evils are altogether contrary to spiritual life; they destroy it; wherefore, unless man receives new life, which is spiritual life, from the Lord, thus unless he is conceived anew, is born anew, is educated anew, that is, is created anew, he is damned; for he wills nothing else, and thence thinks nothing else, but what is of self and the world, in like manner as they do in hell.

HD 177. No man can be regenerated unless he knows such things as are of the new life, that is, of spiritual life. The things which are of the new life, or which are of the spiritual life, are truths which are to be believed and goods which are to done; the former are of faith, the latter of charity. These things no one can know from himself, for man apprehends only those things which are obvious to the senses, from which he procures to himself a light which is called natural light, from which he sees nothing else than what relates to the world and to self, but not the things which relate to heaven and to God. These he must learn from revelation. As that the Lord, who is God from eternity, came into the world to save the human race; that He has all power in heaven and in earth; that the all of faith and the all of charity, thus all truth and good, is from Him; that there is a heaven, and a hell; and that man is to live to eternity, in heaven if he has done well, in hell if he has done evil.

HD 178. These and many other things belong to faith, which the man who is regenerating ought to know; for he who knows them, may think them, afterwards will them, and lastly do them, and so have new life. Whilst he who does not know that the Lord is the Saviour of the human race, cannot have faith in Him, love Him, and thus do good for the sake of Him. He who does not know that all good is from Him, cannot think that his own salvation is from Him, still less can he will it to be so, thus he cannot live from Him. He who does not know that there is a hell and a heaven, nor that there is eternal life, cannot even think about the life of heaven, nor apply himself to receive it, and so in other cases.

HD 179. Every one has an internal man and an external man; the internal is what is called the spiritual man, and the external is what is called the natural man, and each is to be regenerated, that the man may be regenerated. With the man who is not regenerated, the external or natural man rules, and the internal serves; but with the man who is regenerated, the internal or spiritual man rules, and the external serves. Whence it is manifest that the order of life is inverted with man from his birth, namely, that serves which ought to rule, and that rules which ought to serve. In order that man may be saved, this order must be inverted; and this inversion can by no means exist, but by regeneration from the Lord.

HD 180. What it is for the internal man to rule and the external to serve, and vice versa, may be illustrated by this:-If a man places all his good in pleasure, in gain, and in pride, and has delight in hatred and revenge, and inwardly in himself seeks for reasons which confirm them, then the external man rules and the internal serves. But when a man perceives good and delight in thinking and willing well, sincerely, and justly, and in outwardly speaking and doing in like manner, then the internal man rules and the external serves.

HD 181. The internal man is first regenerated by the Lord, and afterwards the external, and tie latter by means of the former. For the internal man is regenerated by thinking those things which are of faith and charity, but the external by a life according to them. This is meant by the words of the Lord:--

Unless anyone be begotten of water and the spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God (John 3:5).

"Water," in the spiritual sense, is the truth of faith, and "the spirit" is a life according to it.

HD 182. The man who is regenerated is, as to his internal man, in heaven, and is an angel there with the angels, among whom he also comes after death; he is then able to live the life of heaven, to love the Lord, to love the neighbor, to understand truth, to relish good, and to perceive the happiness thence derived.


HD 183. What Regeneration is, and why it is effected. At this day little is known concerning regeneration; the reason (AC 3761, 4136, 5398). Man is born into evils of every kind, and thence as to his proprium by birth, he is nothing but evil (AC 210, 215, 731, 874-876, 987, 1047, 2307, 2308, 3518, 3701, 3812, 8480, 8549, 8550, 8552, 10283, 10284, 10286, 10731). Man’s, hereditary nature is nothing but evil, see the extracts above in this doctrine (n. 83). Man‘s proprium is nothing but evil, see the same (n. 82). Man of himself, so far as he is under the influence of his hereditary nature and the proprium, is worse than the brute animals (AC 637, 3175). Therefore of himself he continually looks to hell (AC 694, 8480). Therefore, if man should be led by his own proprium, he could not possibly be saved (AC 10731). Man’s natural life is contrary to spiritual life (AC 3913, 3928). The good which he does from himself or from proprium, is not good, because he does it for the sake of self, and the world (AC 8480). Man‘s proprium must be removed that the Lord and heaven may be able to be present (AC 1023, 1044). It is actually removed when he is regenerated by the Lord (AC 9334-9336, 9452, 9454, 9938). Therefore he must be created anew, that is, regenerated (AC 8548, 8549, 9452, 9937). "Creating" man, in the Word, signifies to regenerate him (AC 16, 88, 10634). Man is conjoined to the Lord by regeneration (AC 2004, 9335). And consociated with angels in heaven (AC 2474). He does not come into heaven, until he is in a state to be led by the Lord by means of good, which is the case when he is regenerated (AC 8516, 8539, 8722, 9139, 9832, 10367). The external or natural man rules, and the internal man serves, in the man who is not regenerated (AC 3167, 8743). Thus the state of man’s life is inverted from his birth, and must be entirely inverted again in order that he may be saved (AC 6507, 8552, 8553, 9258). The end of regeneration is, that the internal or spiritual man may rule, and the external or natural man serve (AC 911, 913). This is actually effected after man is regenerated (AC 5128, 5651, 8743). For after regeneration the love of self and the world no longer reigns, but love to the Lord and towards the neighbor, thus the Lord and not man (AC 8856, 8857). Hence it is plain that man cannot be saved unless he is regenerated (AC 5280, 8548, 8772, 10156). Regeneration is a plane to perfect the life of man to eternity (AC 9334). The regenerate man is perfected to eternity (AC 6648, 10048). The quality of the regenerate and the unregenerate man described (AC 977, 986, 10156).

HD 184. Who is regenerated. Man cannot be regenerated unless he be instructed in the truths of faith and the goods of charity (AC 677, 679, 711, 8635, 8638-8640, 10729). They who are only in truths and not in good, cannot be regenerated (AC 6567, 8725). No one is regenerated unless he is in charity (AC 989). None can be regenerated but such as have conscience (AC 2689, 5470). Every one is regenerated according to his faculty of receiving the good of love to the Lord, and of charity towards the neighbor, by the truths of faith from the doctrine of the church, which is from the Word (AC 2967, 2975). Who can be regenerated, and who cannot (AC 2689). They who live the life of faith and charity, and who are not regenerated in the world, are regenerated in the other life (AC 989, 2490).

HD 185. Regeneration is from the Lord alone. The Lord alone regenerates man, and neither man nor angel contributes thereto (AC 10067). Man‘s regeneration is an image of the Lord’s glorification, that is, as the Lord made His Human Divine, so He makes spiritual the man whom He regenerates (AC 3043, 3138, 3212, 3296, 3490, 4402, 5688, 10057, 10076). The Lord wills to have the whole man whom He regenerates, and not part of him (AC 6138).

HD 186. Further particular concerning regeneration. Man is regenerated by the truths of faith, and by a life according to them (AC 1904, 2046, 9088, 9959, 10028). This is meant by the words of the Lord:--

Unless a man be born of water and of the spirit, he cannot enter the Kingdom of God (John 3:5).

"Water" signifies the truth of faith, and "spirit" a life according thereto (AC 10240). "Water" in the Word signifies the truth of faith (AC 2702, 3058, 5668, 8568, 10238). Spiritual purification, which is from evils and falsities, is effected by the truths of faith (AC 2799, 5954, 7044, 7918, 9088, 10229, 10237). When man is regenerated, truths are inseminated and implanted in good, that they may become of the life (AC 880, 2189, 2574, 2697). What the quality of truths must be that they may be implanted in good (AC 8725). In regeneration truth is initiated and conjoined to good, and good reciprocally to truth (AC 5365, 8516). How this reciprocal initiation and conjunction is effected (AC 3155, 10067). Truth is implanted in good when it becomes of the will, since it then becomes of the love (AC 10367). There are two states of the man who is regenerated; first when he is led by truth to good; second, when he acts from good, and from good sees truth (AC 7992, 7993, 8505, 8506, 8510, 8512, 8516, 8643, 8648, 8658, 8685, 8690, 8701, 8772, 9227, 9230, 9274, 9736, 10048, 10057, 10060, 10076). The quality of man‘s state when truth is in the first place, and good in the second (AC 3610). Hence it appears that when man is regenerating, he looks to good from truth; but when regenerated, he regards truth from good (AC 6247). Thus a turning over as it were takes place, in that the state of man is inverted (AC 6507). But it is to be known, that when man is regenerating, truth is not actually in the first place and good in the second, but only apparently; but when man is regenerated, good is in the first place and truth in the second, actually and perceptibly (AC 3324, 3325, 3330, 3336, 3494, 3539, 3548, 3556, 3563, 3570, 3576, 3603, 3701, 4243, 4245, 4247, 4337, 4925, 4926, 4928, 4930, 4977, 5351, 6256, 6269, 6273, 8516, 10110). Thus good is the first and last of regeneration (AC 9337). Since truth appears to be in the first place and good in the second, when man is regenerating, or, which is the same thing, when man becomes a church, on account of this appearance it was a matter of controversy among the ancients, whether the truth of faith or the good of charity is the first-born of the church (AC 367, 2435). The good of charity is actually the first-born of the church, but the truth of faith only apparently (AC 3325, 3494, 4925, 4926, 4928, 4930, 8042, 8080). "First-born" in the Word signifies the first of the church, to which priority and superiority belongs (AC 3325). The Lord is called the first-born, because in Him and from Him is all the good of love, of charity, and of faith (AC 3325). Man ought not to return from the latter state wherein truth is regarded from good, to the former state, wherein good is regarded from truth, and why (AC 2454, 3650-3655, 5895, 5897, 7857, 7923, 8505, 8506, 8510, 8512, 8516, 9274, 10184). Where these words of the Lord are explained:--

Let not him who is in the field return back to take his garments (Matt 24:18);


Whosoever shall then be in the field, let him not return to those thing which are behind him. Remember Lot’s wife (Luke 17:31, 32):

for this is signified by those words. The process of the regeneration of man described, and how it is effected (AC 1555, 2343, 2490, 2657, 2979, 3057, 3286, 3310 3316, 3332, 3470, 3701, 4353, 5113, 5126, 5270, 5280, 5342, 6717, 8772, 8773, 9043, 9103, 10021, 10057, 10367). The arcana of regeneration are innumerable, since regeneration continues during the whole life of man (AC 2679, 3179, 3584, 3665, 3690, 3701, 4377, 4551, 4552, 5122, 5126, 5398, 5912, 6751, 9103, 9258, 9296, 9297, 9334). Scarcely any of these arcana come to the knowledge and perception of man (AC 3179, 9336). This is meant by the words of the Lord:--

The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but knowest not whence it cometh and whither it goeth; so is everyone that is born of the Spirit (John 3:8).

Concerning the process of the regeneration of the man of the spiritual church (AC 2675, 2678, 2679, 2682). And concerning the process of regeneration of the man of the celestial church, with the difference (AC 5113, 10124). The case of the regenerate man is similar to that of an infant, who first learns to speak, then to think, afterwards to live well, until all those things flow from him spontaneously, as from himself (AC 3203, 9296, 9297). Thus he who is regenerated is first led by the Lord as an infant, then as a boy, and afterwards as an adult (AC 3665, 3690, 4377-4379, 6751). When man is regenerated by the Lord, he is first in a state of external innocence, which is his state of infancy, and is afterwards successively led into a state of internal innocence, which is his state of wisdom (AC 9334, 9335, 10021, 10210). The nature and quality of the innocence of infancy, and of the innocence of wisdom (AC 1616, 2305, 2306, 3494, 4563, 4797, 5608, 9301, 10021). A comparison between the regeneration of man, and the conception and formation of an embryo in the womb (AC 3570, 4931, 9258). Therefore "generations and nativities" in the Word signify spiritual generations and nativities, which belong to regeneration (AC 613, 1145, 1255, 2020, 2584, 3860, 3868, 4070, 4668, 6239, 10204). The regeneration of man illustrated by the germinations in the vegetable kingdom (AC 5115, 5116). The regeneration of man represented in the rainbow (AC 1042, 1043, 1053). The internal or spiritual man, and the external or natural man, must each of them be regenerated, and the one by means of the other (AC 3868, 3870, 3872, 3876, 3877, 3882). The internal man must be regenerated before the external, since the internal man is in the light of heaven, and the external man in the light of the world (AC 3321, 3325, 3469, 3493, 4353, 8746, 9325). The external or natural man is regenerated by means of the internal or spiritual (AC 3286, 3288, 3321). Man is not regenerate before the external or natural man is regenerated (AC 8742-8747, 9043, 9046, 9061, 9325, 9334). The spiritual man is shut unless the natural man is regenerated (AC 6299). And it is as it were blind as to the truths and goods of faith and love (AC 3493, 3969, 4353, 4588). When the natural man is regenerated the whole man is regenerated (AC 7442, 7443). This is signified by "the washing of the disciples feet," and by these words of the Lord:--

He that is washed hath no need to be washed except as to his feet, and the whole is clean (John 13:9, 10);

(AC 10243). "Washing" in the Word signifies spiritual washing, which is purification from evils and falsities (AC 3147, 10237, 10241). And "feet" signify those things that are of the natural man (AC 2162, 3761, 3986, 4280, 4938-4952). Therefore "to wash the feet," is to purify the natural man (AC 3147, 10241). How the natural man is regenerated (AC 3502, 3508, 3509, 3518, 3573, 3576, 3579, 3616, 3762, 3786, 5373, 5647, 5650, 5651, 5660). The quality of the natural man when it is regenerated, and when it is not regenerated (AC 8744, 8745). So far as the natural man does not combat with the spiritual man, so far the man is regenerated (AC 3286). When a man is regenerated, the natural man perceives spiritual things by influx (AC 5651). The sensual, which is the ultimate of the natural man, is not regenerated at this day, but man is elevated above it (AC 7442). All who are regenerated are actually elevated from the sensual into the light of heaven (AC 6183, 6454). The nature and quality of the sensual man may be seen in the extracts above (n. 50). Man is regenerated by influx into the knowledges of good and truth which he has (AC 4096, 4097, 4364). When man is regenerated, he is introduced through mediate goods and truths into genuine goods and truths, and afterwards the mediate goods and truths are left, and the genuine succeed in their place (AC 3665, 3686, 3690, 3974, 4063, 4067, 4145, 6384, 9382). Then another order is induced amongst truths and goods (AC 4250, 4251, 9931, 10303). They are disposed according to ends (AC 4104). Thus according to the uses of spiritual life (AC 9297). They who are regenerated undergo many states, and are continually brought more interiorly into heaven, thus nearer to the Lord (AC 6645). The regenerate man is in the order of heaven (AC 8512). His internal is open into heaven (AC 8512, 8513). Man by regeneration comes into angelic intelligence, which however lies concealed in his interiors so long as he remains in the world, but is opened in the other life, and his wisdom is then like that of the angels (AC 2494, 8747). The states as to enlightenment of those who are regenerated described (AC 2697, 2701, 2704). By regeneration man receives a new understanding (AC 2657). How the case is with respect to the fructification of good, and the multiplication of truth, with those who are regenerated (AC 984). With a regenerate person truths from good form as it were a constellation by successive derivations, and continually multiply themselves round about (AC 5912). With a regenerate person, truths from good are disposed into such order, that the genuine truths of good, from which, as their parents, the rest proceed, are in the middle, whilst the rest succeed in order according to their relationship and affinities, even to the ultimates, where there is obscurity (AC 4129, 4551, 4552, 5134, 5270). With a regenerate person truths from good are arranged in the form of heaven (AC 3316, 3470, 3584, 4302, 5704, 5709, 6028, 6690, 9931, 10303); and in the work on Heaven and Hell, under the article Concerning the Form of Heaven, according to which are the consociations and communications there (HH 200-212); and Concerning the Wisdom of the Angels of Heaven (HH 265-275). With a regenerate person, there is a correspondence between spiritual things and natural things (AC 2850). His order of life is altogether inverted (AC 3332, 5159, 8995). He is altogether a new man as to his spirit (AC 3212). He appears like the unregenerate man as to externals, but not as to internals (AC 5159). Spiritual good, which is to will and to do good from the affection of the love of good, can only be given to man by means of regeneration (AC 4538). Truths, which enter with affection, are reproduced (AC 5893). Truths, so far as they are deprived of life from the proprium of man, are so far conjoined to good, and receive spiritual life (AC 3607, 3610). So far as evils from the love of self and the love of the world are removed, so far there is life in truths (AC 3610). The first affection of truth with the man who is regenerated is not pure, but is purified successively (AC 3089, 8413). Evils and falsities; with the man who is regenerated, are removed slowly, and not quickly (AC 9334, 9335). The evils and falsities of the proprium of man still remain, and are only removed by regeneration (AC 865, 868, 887, 929, 1581, 2406, 4564, 8206, 8393, 8988, 9014, 9333-9336, 9445, 9447, 9448, 9451-9454, 9938, 10057, 10060). Man can never be so far regenerated as to be called perfect (AC 894, 5122, 6648). Evil spirits dare not assault the regenerate (AC 1695). They who believe the justification taught in the church, know little of regeneration (AC 5398). Man must have freedom, to be capable of being regenerated (AC 1937, 1947, 2876, 2881, 3145, 3146, 3158, 4031, 8700). Man is introduced into heavenly freedom by regeneration (AC 2874, 2875, 2882, 2892). There is no conjunction of good and truth by compulsion, and thus no regeneration (AC 2875, 2881, 4031, 8700). Other particulars respecting freedom as it regards regeneration, may be seen in the doctrine above, where it treats of Freedom. He who is regenerated, must necessarily undergo temptations (AC 3696, 8403). Because temptations take place for the sake of the conjunction of good and truth, and also on account of the conjunction of the internal and the external man (AC 4248, 4272, 5773).

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