Love First

Contents

Introduction

Is There a Balance?

I have heard sermons criticized for emphasizing love too much. I have heard other sermons criticized for emphasizing doctrine too much. My own preaching has been criticized from both directions. I have wondered about this. How do we know what is balanced?

A number of questions might be asked about these sermons:

Was the sermon unbalanced, emphasizing one truth to the exclusion of others? Is the lack of balance in the listener, rather than the sermon? Is it perhaps simply a matter of poor writing–that certain words such as “doctrine” or “love” get repeated too often? or is it simply the way things should be–a healthy variety of different emphases?

I have wondered how we should accommodate our preaching to different states of regeneration. Specifically, how do we fill the needs of people who are in a state of reformation as compared with those who are in a state of regeneration?

Will those in a state of reformation be more interested in doctrine, while the regenerate are more interested in love? Is this something we can observe in our congregations? Should we consciously gear our accommodation in one direction or the other?

Why Should We Be Concerned?

I am sure that as priests the primary interest we all have is to see more people living by what the Lord teaches in His Word. We are interested in touching people’s lives with the Lord’s love. We want to reach the broken-hearted, overwhelmed, busy, lonely or apathetic people in our congregations with a healing, inspiring message. At the same time, as a means to the end, we want them attending classes, reading for themselves, studying and talking about the doctrine.

In trying to interest people in doctrine, there are several things we could tell them. Here are a few:

  • Truth introduces us to good, when we live according to it.
  • Truth perfects good.
  • We are reformed and regenerated through the truth.
  • In the beginning truth must take priority over good.
  • Truth teaches and enables us to perceive what good is.
  • Faith must rule over charity in the beginning.

There are several problems that may arise when we tell people these kinds of truths. The problems arise from the fact that these truths are not genuine truths, but appearances of truth.

Are We Trying to Find a Balance?

It may appear that we are seeking a middle road between two extremes. At one end of the scale we have people who talk about faith alone. At the other end, we have people who only talk about love. Our job is to find the proper balance between the two.

I suggest that we should not be seeking a balance between two extremes in this case, because good and truth are at the same end of the scale, not opposite ends. Doesn’t the word “balance” imply two forces working in opposite directions? We are in a balance between good and evil–each is pulling us a different way. The more we approach one, the farther we get from the other. But that is not the case with good and truth. They pull towards each other, not away from each other. They are both on the same end of the tug o’ war–the more we come into truth, the closer we draw to good, and vice versa. We can never get more love by having less doctrine! We can never improve the doctrine by cutting back on the love! The two are inseparable, always and unconditionally one. Truth without good is just apparent truth. Good without truth is just apparent truth. (DP 13) The Writings continually speak of conjunction, rather than balance, between good and truth. The question should not be, “How can we keep a balance between good and truth in our preaching?” Rather, it should be, “How can we conjoin good and truth in our preaching?”

Conjoining Good and Truth

A good starting point is to talk about the fact that good and truth must always be conjoined. The conjunction of good and truth is one of the two essentials of the New Church. Whether we are speaking about heaven, marriage, the Word, regeneration, the church, the Lord’s glorification, or human activities, the topic is always the conjunction of good and truth. Certainly it is an essential, universal, genuine truth that good and truth are one.

If someone asks us, “Which is more important, charity or faith, love or wisdom?” Can’t we simply answer, “The two are one. They cannot be separated.”? As far as it goes, that answer is both good and true. But is it enough of an answer? Can we say, “It really doesn’t matter which is more important, as long as we keep them together!”? As long as a person lives well, what difference does it make whether he emphasizes faith more or charity more?

Once Swedenborg heard some people debating about whether faith or charity is primary. Those who made faith the principal said, “Believe us, we are not only justified, but also sanctified by faith alone!”

Those who made charity the principal thing of the church argued back, “Charity saves, and not faith!”

Then another person got up and said, “You are all wrong!… They must be joined together!” (AR 386)

Each of the three answers was expressing a different form of faith alone. Apparently, all of them went to hell. I find it very interesting that the people who made faith alone the principle later cheered for the one who said they must be conjoined!

There are many among the dragonists who have no problem agreeing that faith and charity belong together. There is another story about some dragonists who wanted to make themselves acceptable to people who put charity first. They said, “Both you and we make faith and charity the essentials of religion; the only difference is that you say that charity is primary and from it comes faith, while we say that faith is primary and from it comes charity. What does it matter which is called the primary if only both are believed in?” (AR 655.4, TCR 388)

What does it matter? I would say that it depends on who you are:

It doesn’t matter for evil people

People who are basically selfish are not going to care whether the truths they have are genuine or not. “They who are in the affection for truth from this selfish origin do not care whether the truths they know are genuine, provided they are such as they can pass off as truths.” (AC 8993.) And of course the people just above were evil who asked, “What does it matter which is called the primary if only both are believed in?”

It doesn’t matter for simple people

“It is not very important for the simple to know which is prior and which is posterior, provided they live in charity.” (AC 3995.2.) For simple people it is enough to know that the two must be conjoined. “Let them say either that faith or that life saves, or let them put either this one or that one in the first place; but let them know… that one cannot exist apart from the other.” (SD 5973.)

For the wise it matters

If our only concern is that people may be barely saved. then almost any religion is good enough, as long as a person lives well. People who have false beliefs, such as that faith produces charity, can get as far as the threshold of heaven. (AE 798) However, such minimal salvation is not the Lord’s will (although it may be by His leave or good pleasure). He wants everybody to be in the highest heaven. (AC 1799) He wants people to receive genuine good.

For this purpose, appearances, fallacies and falsities will not serve. The internal person, and heaven, are opened by none other than genuine truths. Only genuine truths can open the internal sense to a person. Only genuine truths can give birth to love truly conjugial. Only genuine truths can give us a clear vision of the Lord in His Divine Human. Genuine truths are part of the heritage and destiny of the New Church. (See Section 8.)

So for those who are wise, or who wish to be wise, it is important to know the genuine truth about which comes first. “The simple minded can think about and believe these and like things according to the sense of the letter;… While the adult who wishes to be wise will not explain these things in the literal sense…. For if a wise adult should explain such expressions according to the sense of the letter and confirm them by reasonings, he would destroy the genuine truth itself such as it is in heaven, and consequently close up heaven to himself.” (AE 916) “They who are in the genuine affection of truth search the scriptures and pray to the Lord for enlightenment, and when they are enlightened they rejoice from the heart.” (AC 8993.) To the person who desires genuine truth, it matters which comes first.

One of the reasons why it is important to know which comes first is that faith alone preachers often confuse the issue by putting great emphases on repentance, love, and good works. You have probably heard some old church preachers who say a great deal about love. They may talk about how much Jesus loves us all, and how much the world needs love, and how much happiness love can bring you. They may tell you stories of loving Christians who once were selfish sinners, and about how wonderful it is to be in their church with so many loving people around. And then at the end of the sermon they may say, “If you want this kind of love, all you have to do is come forward now and confess your faith in Jesus, and you will become a new person.”

The problem is not how much or little they talk about love, but how and why they talk about love. Everything they say about love is like blowing up a balloon. And then if they say only a few words about faith alone, it’s like pricking the balloon with a needle.

I suppose that if we were all in simple good, and there were no dragon to lead us astray, it might be enough “if only both were believed in.” To combat faith alone, for the opening of the spiritual mind, genuine truths are needed.

Another reason why it matters whether the truths we have are genuine, is because of the danger of over-emphasizing apparent truths. Of course, everyone speaks according to appearances. Nobody would understand us if we tried to avoid using apparent truths in our speech. And since appearances of truth are truths appearing, it is not harmful for simple people to think and to be instructed according to them. In fact, they need those appearances, and could be harmed if we denied them.

The wise, however, will not think from appearances, because apparent truths can become fallacies or falsities when they are taken as real truths. “All fallacies which prevail with the evil and the simple arise from appearances which have been confirmed.” (DLW 108) Genuine truth, on the other hand, serves as a lamp to enlighten confusing or apparently contradictory passages. And genuine truths are much more powerful and useful than apparent truths for fighting evil and giving form to genuine good.

Keeping in mind the danger of confirming appearances, and the value of genuine truths, consider the following statements:

AppearancesGenuine Truths
A person is reformed and regenerated through the truth of faith.A person is reformed and regenerated through the good of faith.
Truth enables us to perceive what good is, because it teaches.Good enables truth to perceive.
Truth introduces to good when a person lives according to it.   Good flows into truth and introduces it to itself.
Truth perfects good.Good perfects truth.
The goods of life are the fruits of faith.The goods of life are the fruits of charity.<
Faith has the dominion at first.Charity has the dominion at first.

(AC 3207, 4247, 3324, etc.)

What would happen if, rather than putting the emphasis on the genuine truths, we put the emphasis on the appearances? One danger is that the appearances, if taken as genuine truths, would become fallacies or falsities. Thus there is a danger that we may destroy the very truths we endeavor to emphasize.

Another danger is that states of love may be destroyed. In the Word there is a frequent warning against “going back and clown.” He who is upon the house, let him not come down. He who is in the field, let not return. He who is in good should not look to the doctrinal things of faith (AC 5895). He who is in a state of good … shall not return into a state of truth. (AC 10184.4) If at that time he were to look back, or were to do good from truth, he would act from his own (AC 8505). He would fall into temptations in which he would succumb (AC 3652). He would lose the affection of doing what is good from love, and relapse into the state of faith,…and he would also relapse beyond this state (AC 7857. Cf. AC 2454, 3653, 5895, 5897.9, 7923, 8616, 8517, 9274.3, HD 186, HH 208, Matt 24.17, Mark 13.16, Luke 17.31). I cannot help but think that these words of the Lord, which are not at all intelligible without the internal sense (AC 2454), were directed especially at the New Church. Too much emphasis on the apparent truths of the state of reformation may jeopardize the state of those who are regenerate.

Furthermore, it is the doctrine of charity, rather than the doctrine of faith, which unites the church. The more we emphasize the apparent truths which give faith the dominion at first, the more we will see division and polarization in the church.

But What About “Good Alone”?

One of the questions that might be asked is, “Is there a danger that in putting charity in the first place, we might also fall into teaching ‘good alone’? Isn’t good alone just as dangerous as faith alone?” My answer is, simply, no; for several reasons:

First, the difference between teaching “good first” and teaching “good alone” is as great as the difference between heaven and earth. It is the difference between a soul in a body and a soul without a body, or between a flame giving light and a flame that does not give light. Recognizing the flame as the source of the light does not do away with the light.

Second, actually, ‘good alone’ and ‘faith alone’ have quite a bit in common. Good alone is apparent good, faith alone is based on apparent truth. Both are unconcerned with genuine truth; both allow a person to call whatever favors his natural inclinations good. Ironically, it is not by putting good first, but by putting truth first, that we are likely to fall into good alone, because putting faith first tends to separate good and truth, but putting charity first conjoins them.

Third, even if it were a matter of finding a ‘balance’ between the two extremes of faith alone and good alone, it would be better to err on the side of good alone. (AE 232) Good without truth cannot open the spiritual mind, but at least it does not close it, as faith alone does if confirmed. (AE 798)

How Are Good and Truth Conjoined?

Perhaps is it because of the need for genuine truths about love that the Writings emphasize the importance not only of knowing that good and truth are conjoined, but also of knowing how they are conjoined. “Nothing is more necessary for a person to know than what good and truth are; how the one has respect to the other; and how one is conjoined to the other.” (HD 12.) “Nothing is more important to know than how the will and the understanding make one mind.” (HD 32.) “Such knowledge is especially necessary for the one who belongs to the church.” (HD 12.)

There are, of course, many answers to the question, How do good and truth make one? Some answers:

  • By temptations.
  • By influx of one into the other.
  • By a life according to truths.
  • By shunning evils as sins.

The answer I want to focus on is this:

Good and Truth Make One When Good Is in the First Place.

“Charity should not only be not separated from faith, but also constitute the principal of faith.” (AC 3,93.)/P>

“When the good of life is in the first place then the will has been conjoined with the understanding.” (AC 3530.)

The Writings have many ways of saying that good comes first:

  • Good is superior, higher.
  • Good is in the first place.
  • Good is interior than truth.
  • Good is prior to truth in degree.
  • Good is to be loved more than truth.
  • Good ought to have dominion over truth.
  • Truth should humble itself and submit to good.
  • Good is first in end, and actually first in time.

The Writings also illustrate this truth with many comparisons (see table).

Good is…Truth is…
esseexistere
endcause
internalexternal
activereactive
soulbody
flamelight from it
masterservant
fatherson
firstbornsecondborn
bodyclothing
heartlungs
fruitleaves
contentscontainer

What Happens When We Put Charity First?

If we emphasize the genuine truth that charity is in the first place, what kind of results might we get? I would say that when we teach that charity comes first we may see the following happen:

  • We are teaching a genuine truth, rather than an appearance. We therefore reduce the danger of confirming the appearance and creating a fallacy or falsity.
  • We help give people increased enlightenment and understanding of the Word, since these depend on the acknowledgment that charity is in the first place.
  • We facilitate the conjunction of good and truth, since they can be conjoined only when good is in the first place. Consequently, by putting charity first, we will have better ‘balance’ in our preaching.
  • We bring greater unity to the church, since making charity the primary thing is what unifies the church.
  • We can more easily accommodate to both the simple and the wise at the same time, since it is in matters of life and love that the internal sense makes one with the literal sense of the Word.

In short, the more we give charity the proper priority over faith, and the more we acknowledge that charity is first, even in the beginning, the more we will encourage a desire for both doctrine and a life according to doctrine.

Note

The remarks I have made here are the least important part of this paper. The real paper begins with the quotes from the Writings in Section 1. After all, it doesn’t matter what I think, only what the Lord is teaching us.

This paper is focusing on charity, and the relationship between charity and faith. I have avoided getting into the certain aspects of the subject. For example, the relationship between charity and shunning evils, or between charity and prudence. Most significantly, I have not dealt with the doctrine of the Lord, and of love to the Lord, simply because the subject would be too vast. I say many things about charity to emphasize its priority. Charity is the only doctrine in the Word; it is in the first place; and so on. However, what I say about charity is even more true about the Lord and love to Him. The Lord is to be in the first place; the doctrine of the Lord is the central and the only doctrine; and love to the Lord is prior to charity.

Actually, all the things I have said about charity are appearances of truth. While I can rightly say that truth and enlightenment are always from good, a deeper, more genuine truth is that they are from the Lord. Again, it is not charity that is in the first place, but love to the Lord. Nor is love to the Lord in the first place, but the Lord Himself is.

The Only Doctrine Is Charity

The Purpose of Doctrine Is Life

All things of the church regard charity as their ultimate and end. AC 1249e

What are doctrinal things except for the sake of an end, and what is the end but the life? AC 2982

The doctrines (in heaven) all regard life as the end, and not faith without life. HH 227

That everything of doctrine regards life, everyone may know from purely natural light. AC 4715

All truths are knowledges of good: the truths which are not from good, or which do not regard good as the end, are not truths; but in so far as they regard doctrine they are called knowledges of truth. AC 3680e

Neither does what is doctrinal make the church, if that which is doctrinal does not regard charity both in general and in special. In that case charity is the end, and from the end is evident the quality of what is doctrinal as to whether it is of the church or not. AC 809e

Doctrine is made from a person’s self when he has for an end his own glory, or his own gain; whereas it is made from the Lord, when he has for an end the good of the neighbor and the good of the Lord’s kingdom. AC 10406.2

Doctrine in one complex comprehends all those things which lead to good, that is, to charity. AC 2234

The person who wants to be enlightened by the Lord must take especial care not to appropriate to himself any doctrinal thing which supports evil. AC 10640.2

This Is a “How-To” Church

What is the use of that which is doctrinal except to teach how a person must be? AC 1799.3

The purpose of doctrinal things was not to teach them how to think, but how to live. AC 2982

Doctrine teaches us…

  • How to live so that it may be according to order. AC 8513.3
  • How to live in the world in order to be happy to eternity. AC 8938e
  • How to worship God and how to live in order to recede from hell and approach heaven. AE 1150

Doctrine teaches…but worship does these things. AE 1150

Love Is the Only Thing We Ever Teach About

If you like, examine doctrinal things; are they not all of charity? AC 1798.2

There is not any other doctrine, that is, not in any other thing than mutual love, which is the true doctrine of faith. AC 2009e

What is the doctrine of the church but the doctrine of charity? And why is there a doctrine of faith except in order to become such as it teaches? AC 916

There are two essentials which constitute the church, and thence two principal things of doctrine–one, that the Lord’s Human is Divine, the other, that love to the Lord and charity towards the neighbor make the church. AC 4723

Every church of the Lord at its beginning…has nothing doctrinal except what belongs to charity, and loves no other. AC 2417

The case with churches is this: in the beginning charity is their fundamental principle. AC 2910.2

When any church is being established, the Word is at first shut up to them, but is afterwards unclosed…and then they learn that all doctrine is founded upon these two commandments, that the Lord is to be loved above all things, and the neighbor as themselves. AC 3773

The truths of knowledges or of doctrinal things are those things which are of life, and regard charity towards the neighbor and love to the Lord…. The doctrinal things of love and charity, which were the whole of doctrine in the Ancient Church, have been obliterated. AC 3420

Interiorly regarded, the doctrines of all churches teach life; for what doctrine of the church is there which does not teach that one is to examine one’s self? DP 338.3

All (or every) religion is of life. Life 1

Love Was the Only Doctrine in the Most Ancient Church

The doctrine of love and charity…is that which was cultivated in the most ancient churches; and because this made a one with the doctrine of faith, they cast out those who separated them. AC 2571

The Most Ancient Church was in the very perception of love to the Lord and of charity toward the neighbor; thus it had what is doctrinal of love and charity inscribed on itself. AC 2417.5

The Most Ancient Church acknowledged no other faith than love itself. AC 32.2

The Most Ancient Church…acknowledged no other faith than that which was of love to the Lord and the neighbor…and for this reason they were unwilling to mention faith, lest it should be separated from love. AC 337, 393

With the people of the Most Ancient Church no distinction was made between love…and faith…because love was everything, and faith was of love. AC 398.2

Love Was the Only Doctrine in the Ancient Church

Doctrine and doctrinal things in the Ancient Church were…

  • not for them to think by. but to live by. AC 2982
  • all of charity or life. AC 2913
  • treated only of love and charity. AC 3419.3

In the Ancient Church the doctrine of love and charity was…

  • The only doctrine cultivated. AC 2417. See 4955
  • The only doctrine they knew about. AC 4433, 4844, HD 9
  • The whole of doctrine. AC 3412.2, 3420
  • THE doctrine. AC 6628, HD 9, 106, 107
  • What conjoined all the churches. AC 6628.

In the Ancient Church…

  • love and charity were acknowledged as the chief and the essential thing. AC 2982
  • those who cultivated the doctrine of faith were called ‘Canaanites’ and were separated from the rest. AC 2913

Love Was the Only Doctrine in the Early Christian Church

The Christian Church exists when it abides in (the two great commandments.) AC 4766.3

In its beginning it had no other doctrine than that of love and charity, for this the Lord Himself taught. AC 2417.3

Before the Lord came into the world, scarcely anyone knew what the internal person is, and what charity is. wherefore the Lord in so many passages has taught love, that is, charity, and this makes the difference between the Old Testament or Covenant and the New. TCR 409

The Christian church was primitively in the good of faith, and its members lived together as brethren in charity…but it has now become of such a character that its members do not even know that the fundamental of faith is love to the Lord and charity towards the neighbor. AC 2243.7; cp. AC 1834.2. AC 3803.2

All the Teachings of the New Church Are About Love and Charity

All things of the doctrine of the New Jerusalem relate to love to the Lord and to love towards the neighbor. AR 903

Its doctrine is the doctrine of love to the Lord and of charity towards the neighbor, together with the truths of this doctrine. AE 730, 732.2

(Twelve foundation stones) means all the things of that doctrine from the sense of the letter of the Word in their order with those who approach the Lord directly, and live according to the commandments of the Decalogue by shunning evils as sins; for these and no others are in the doctrine of love to God and of love towards the neighbor, which are the two foundations of religion. AR 915

The Male Son

The male son means the genuine truth of the church, hence also its doctrine…. But the genuine doctrine of the church is the doctrine of good, thus the doctrine of life, which is that of love to the Lord and of charity towards the neighbor; but still it is the doctrine of truth; for doctrine teaches life, love, and charity; and in so far as it teaches them it is true…This doctrine, which is here signified by the male son is chiefly the doctrine of love to the Lord and of charity towards the neighbor, thus the doctrine of the good of life, which nevertheless is the doctrine of truth. AE 724

The doctrine teaches how we are to live and act, and life lives and does it. From this also it is evident that the male son means the doctrine of love and charity, thus the doctrine of life. AE 725

The male son means doctrine concerning the Lord. and concerning the life of charity. LJ 186

The Word Is Entirely About Love

The whole Word is nothing else than the doctrine of love and charity. AC 1408e, 6632, 9841.4; see AC 7262, HD 9.4, 106, 107, AR 136

The Word is the doctrine of good for it is the doctrine of love to the Lord and of love towards the neighbor. AC 9780

The truths of faith from love are those which treat of love to the Lord and of charity towards the neighbor; for these are the truths which love dictates. The whole Word is the doctrine of such truths. AC 9841.4

All things belonging to doctrine of life have reference to love to God and love towards the neighbor; and all things pertaining to these loves are contained in the Decalogue. In the Whole Word nothing else is taught… TCR 287

All things in the Word are matters of life and also all things therein have relation to life, as can be seen from the two commandments on which all things of the Word are based. AC 9383.2

Everything of doctrine in the Word as to a person, is to worship Him, and to love Him. AC 2859

Melancthon then consulted the Word. and his eyes were opened, and he saw that it is full of love to God and love towards the neighbor. TCR 797.2

All human laws, as all Divine ones, are founded in love to the Lord and charity towards the neighbor. AC 1121

The Internal Sense Is the Doctrine of Love and Charity

The Word in its internal sense treats of nothing else than love to the Lord and love towards the neighbor. AC 3427.2

The sons of Israel would have known these internal things if they would have received the doctrine of love and charity; as this teaches what the external things involve. From this doctrine also, the internal sense of the Word is known, since the internal sense of the Word is the Doctrine itself of love to the Lord and of charity towards the neighbor…as in the Christian world at this day, there is no doctrine of love to the Lord and of charity towards the neighbor, it is scarcely known what celestial love and spiritual love are…Hence it is that at the present day also the external sense of the Word, without doctrine for a directress and leader is bent wherever they like; for the doctrine of faith, without the doctrine of love and charity is as the shade of night; whereas the doctrine of faith from the doctrine of love and charity is as the light of day; for the good which is of love and charity is as a flame, and the truth of faith is as the light thence derived. AC 9409

The Lord’s Divine Human, love to Him, and love towards the neighbor, are the three chief things of the internal sense …and they are the internal and holy things of all the doctrinal things which are from the Word…A fourth is, that the Word is Divine as to every tittle, thus that the Lord is in the Word. AC 3454

It is therefore not surprising that (the spiritual…) have no doctrine of charity. Their doctrinal things being from the Word does not make them truths Divine; for anything doctrinal whatever can be hatched from the sense of the letter of the Word…. But not if what is doctrinal is formed from the internal sense. AC 7233.3

The Doctrine from the Literal Sense Is About Love

The doctrine itself from the literal sense of the Word is one doctrine only, namely, the doctrine of charity and of love; for this doctrine and a life according to it is the whole Word, as the Lord says. AC 3445, cf. AC 3427.5

The whole of the Word in the sense of the letter is written in accordance with these doctrinal things (of charity), so that he who has no knowledge of them cannot possibly know any interior sense of the Word. AC 3419.3; cf. AC 3420

There are many things intermingled (in the sense of the letter) from which doctrine can be collected and formed, especially the doctrine of life, which is the doctrine of charity and thence of faith. AE 356.2

There Is a Doctrine of Faith and a Doctrine of Charity

There are many things that appear to be mere matters of faith, such as that there is a God; that the Lord, who is God, is the redeemer and Savior, that there is a heaven and hell. that there is a life after death; and many other things of which it is not said that they are to be done, but that they are to be believed. These things of faith also are dead with a person who is in evil, but are living with a person who is in good. Life 47; cf. 48

There are also truths of faith which do not, like the former, treat of love, but which only confirm the former more nearly or remotely. These truths of faith are called secondary truths. AC 9841.4

In the truth of faith there are theoretical matters and practical ones and he who regards the theoretical for the sake of the practical, and who sees the former in the latter, and who thus from both conjoined regards the good use of life, and is affected by both for the sake of this end, is in faith from the Lord. AC 9297.3

The doctrine concerning good is the doctrine of charity, and the doctrine concerning truth is the doctrine of faith. AC 2231

Doctrine is twofold, one of charity, the other of faith. AC 2417.6

The doctrinal things of charity teach what is good, and the doctrinal things of faith what is truth. AC 4844.3

The Doctrine of Faith Is the Doctrine of Charity

Charity is the very doctrine of faith. AC 916

The doctrine concerning good is the doctrine of charity, and the doctrine concerning truth is the doctrine of faith. In general. there is only one doctrine, namely the doctrine of charity; for all things of faith regard charity. AC 2231

To teach truth is the same as to teach what good is; for all truth looks to good. AC 2372

All truths are knowledges of good:… but in so far as they look to doctrine, they are called knowledges of truth. AC 3680

The Law and the prophets, that is, the universal doctrine of faith with all its knowledges consists in love to the Lord and in love towards the neighbor. AC 2049, 2116.3

Hence it is evident that doctrine is twofold, one of charity, the other of faith. although essentially both are one, for. the doctrine of charity involves all things of faith: but when doctrine is made up solely of those things which are of faith, it is said to be twofold, because faith is separated from charity. AC 2417.6

Faith is the doctrine of faith…, but especially it is obedience to all things which it teaches; and the primary thing the doctrine of faith teaches is love to the Lord and love to the neighbor. AC 36

The genuine doctrine of the church is the doctrine of charity and at the same time of faith, and not the doctrine of faith without the former; for the doctrine of charity and at the same time of faith is the doctrine of life, but not the doctrine of faith without the doctrine of charity. AC 10764

The doctrine of love and charity is now for the first time mentioned, although regarded in itself the doctrine of faith is the same and the Lord’s perception and thought in everything of faith was always from the Divine Love. Hence it is that the doctrine of love and charity is the Divine doctrine itself…and this made one with the doctrine of faith. AC 2571

When The Doctrine of Charity is Lacking

The doctrinal things of faith, if widowed and separated from the doctrinal things of charity, teach almost nothing for the doctrinal things of charity teach what is good, and the doctrinal things of faith what is truth; and to teach what is true without teaching what is good is to walk blindfold; for good is what teaches and leads, and truth is what is taught and led. Between these two kinds of doctrinal things there is as great a difference as there is between light and darkness: unless the darkness is enlightened by the light, that is, unless truth is enlightened by good, or faith by charity, there is nothing but darkness. AC 4844.3 see 4955)

(In England), the doctrine of faith exists with those who are initiated into the priesthood, and…the doctrine of charity with many of the laity. TCR 812

Faith Is Charity

Love and faith…constitute one and the same thing. AC 34

Love to the Lord and love to the neighbor are faith itself. AC 1176

True and real faith is love to the Lord and toward the neighbor. AC 1964

In the Word, by faith nothing else is meant than love to the Lord and charity towards the neighbor. AC 2116.2

Faith…is charity ; for to this lead all things which are called of the doctrine of faith. AC 2228e

Faith, when conjoined with charity, is no longer called faith but charity. AC 7758

Faith in its essence is charity. F 22, SE 5945

Faith is only the form of love. AC 668

By the faith which will perish in the last times nothing else is meant than charity. AC 1843

Consequently, Truth Is Good

Faith, regarded in itself, is charity; thus the truth of faith, regarded in itself. is the good of faith; because faith is never possible except from charity. AC 4605

Interior truth in its essence is nothing else than the good of charity. AC 4448

Truth in itself is good, because from good: truth is the form of good; that is, when good is formed so as to be intellectually perceived, it is called truth. AC 3049

The truths which are from good are said to be forms of good, because they are nothing else than goods formed. He who conceives of truths in any other way…does not know what truths are. AC 4574.2

Truth, being of good, is also good. AC 3538.2

As wisdom is from love, therefore both taken together are called love. DP 13

The Need for Truth

Knowledge Is Necessary

Nothing is of more importance than to know the truth. AC 794e

Doctrinal things or the knowledges of faith are in the highest degree necessary for the formation of the life of charity, which cannot be formed without them. AC 2049.3

…how important it is that truths be known and believed; for a person is enlightened by truths, and blinded by falsities. AC 2588.8

When the Lord makes a person new, He first instructs him in the truths of faith; for without the truths of faith a person does not know what the Lord is, what heaven is, and what hell is, etc. AC 4538.2

From truth it is known what falsity and evil are. AC 1685

It is incumbent on everyone to learn truths from the Word, or from preaching, to store them up in the memory, and to think about them for the understanding must teach the will…from the truths which are in the memory…. so that this is the principal means of reformation. DP 233.7

A person must learn all truth and this by an external way…and have it implanted in his memory. AC 3175

The knowledge of truth and good are not of faith before a person is in charity, but they are the storehouse, out of which the faith of charity may be formed. F 25, 31

No one can be regenerated except through knowledges of faith, which are truths. The Lord comes to meet these through good. AC 2063.3

The natural is not…regenerated except by means of doctrinal things or knowledges of good and truth; the celestial person, by the knowledges of good first, but the spiritual person by the knowledges of truth first. AC 3502.2

When a person is being regenerated or becoming a church, he first learns those things which are of faith, that is, which are of spiritual truth; for he is introduced by means of the doctrine of faith or of truth: for a person is such that he does not know from himself what heavenly good is, but this he learns from the doctrine which is called the doctrine of faith. All the doctrine of faith regards life as the end, and as it regards life, it regards good. AC 3863

The reason a person ought to have knowledge, is that he knows nothing of spiritual and celestial things…and therefore he ought to have knowledges in order that he may be regenerated through them and receive charity from the Lord, and afterwards act from charity and know these things and innumerable other ones. SE 4264

(A person cannot be tempted before he has knowledge.) AC 1685

Where there is no knowledge, there is no love. CL 134.3

The conjunction of good and truth takes place according to the increase of knowledge. HD 23, AC 314 1

He who has not acquired for himself truths–or things like truth as is the case with the gentiles–and applied them to life, however much he may suppose himself to be in good, yet is not. AC 5954.8

Enlightenment is through truths, and according to truths. AC 3098

The Word Can Be Understood Only by Means of Doctrine

The sense of the letter of the Word cannot be understood without doctrine. AC 9025, 9424, 9430, 10324, SS 51, HH 31 le, HD 262

Those who read the Word without doctrine, or who do not acquire for themselves doctrine from the Word, are in obscurity as to every truth, and their minds are wavering and uncertain, prone to errors, and pliant to heresies which they also embrace wherever inclination or authority favors, and their reputation is not endangered. For the Word is to them like a lampstand without a lamp. and in their gloom they seem to see many things, and yet see scarcely anything. for doctrine alone is a lamp. SS 52

If he has not doctrine for a lamp he is carried away into errors, wherever the obscurity of his understanding and the delight of his will lead and draw him. AC 10400.3

It is an invariable truth that no one can understand the Word without doctrine; for he may be led away into any errors to which he may be inclined from some love, or to which he may be drawn from some principle, whereby his mind becomes unsettled and uncertain, and at length as it were destitute of truth. But he who reads the Word from doctrine sees all things that confirm it, and many things that are hidden from the eyes of others…. Unless there is doctrine for a lamp these (appearances of truth and genuine truths) cannot be seen and distinguished from each other. AE 1089

At the present day also the external sense of the Word, without doctrine as a rule and guide, may be bent wherever one pleases. For the doctrine of faith, without the doctrine of love and charity, is like the shade of night. AC 9409.4

In such obscurity and falsity of faith are those who believe the Word without doctrine made from it by one who is enlightened. They who read the Word without doctrine are like those who walk in darkness without a lamp. AC 10582.3

The church is according to its doctrine…but still doctrine does not establish the church, but the soundness and purity of its doctrine, consequently. the understanding of the Word. TCR 245

Everyone ought to acquire truth for himself first from the doctrine of the church, and afterwards from the Word of the Lord. AC 6822.2

They who only teach and learn the literal sense of the Word without the doctrine of the church for a directress, apprehend nothing but the things of the natural person; whereas they who do so from the true doctrine which is from the Word, understand also the things which are of the spiritual person. AC 9025.2

They who do not care for doctrine have no a fixed but a vague faith. therefore they have no intellectual that can be enlightened in the other life. SE 5474

No one can fight against evils and falsities and dissipate them, without doctrine from the Word…. Without doctrine from the Word no one can become spiritual within the church where the Word is…For a person becomes spiritual by a life according to Divine truths. which he does not know without doctrine; and by the removal of evils and falsities, which is not effected without doctrine. AE 356.3.4

They who are in no doctrine are not able to be in heaven . SE 5451

At their beginning, all uses are truths of doctrine. AC 4984.2

Good Can Be Acquired Only by Means of Truths

Regeneration

It is according to order that regeneration should be accomplished through truth. AC 3508

All reformation is effected by means of truth and not without it. DP 298.4

When a person is being regenerated. that is, when he becomes the church. he must first know and understand what the truth of faith is; secondly he must will and do it; and thirdly, he must be affected with it; and when a person is affected with truth, that is, when he perceives delight and blessedness in acting according to the truth, he is in charity or mutual love. AC 3876

Conscience is formed by means of truths. AC 1077, 2046

Regeneration is not possible without truths, through which faith is formed, and with which charity conjoins itself. TCR 618

Reception of Good

The sole receptacle of good is truth . HH 37 1

If a person does not learn or receive truths, good cannot flow in, thus the person cannot become spiritual (AC 3387). HD 23

How spiritual good is formed by truths (AC 3470, 3570). HD 23

The heavenly love which continually inflows from the Lord cannot be received except in truths; and therefore a person is reformed and regenerated through the knowledges of truth. AC 2046

The case with charity is. that it contains in itself the willing of truth, and thereby the understanding of truth…but before a a person comes to charity, he must first be in what is external, that is, in the understanding of truth then in the willing of truth. and at last in the being affected with truth which is charity; and when the person is in charity, be has regard to the Lord. AC 3877

All spiritual good is acquired through truths. AE 240

Everyone ought to be led to Christian good, which is called charity, by the truth of faith; for the truth of faith ought to teach, not only what charity is, but also what its quality must be; and unless he at first learns this from what is doctrinal of his church–for he can never know it at all from himself–he cannot be prepared and thus adapted to receive that good. AC 8516.2

Charity is implanted by means of truth. AC 2088

The Spiritual Church

In the spiritual church at the beginning…the doctrine of truth is the firstborn with the external church and the truth of doctrine with the internal church or what is the same thing. the doctrine of faith is the firstborn with the external church. and faith itself with the internal. After the church has been planted…the good of charity is the firstborn with the external church and charity itself is the firstborn with the internal church. AC 3325.11

This church ascends to interior things according to this order; it first has the truth which is said to be of faith then exercise according to this truth. afterwards charity from it, and at last celestial love. AC 3759

With the postdiluvians and with those who live at this day, there is no love, thus no will of good, but faith is possible, or the understanding of truth, and from faith or the understanding of truth they can be brought to a certain kind of charity but by another way, that is, by means of the insinuation of conscience by the Lord from the knowledges of truth and good. AC 310.2

At this day faith precedes, and through faith charity is bestowed by the Lord, and then charity becomes the chief thing. AC 337e

As it was foreseen that mankind…would separate faith from love to the Lord. and would make a separate and distinct doctrine out of faith. it was provided that it should be separated; yet so that through faith, or the knowledge of faith, they might receive charity from the Lord; so that knowledge or hearing should come first, and through knowledge or hearing charity should be bestowed by the Lord, that is, love to the neighbor and mercy; which charity would not only be not separated from faith, but also constitute the principal of faith. AC 393

The spiritual are they who have received charity from the Lord through the knowledge of faith from which they act when they have been received. AC 459e

Good Has Its Quality by Means of Truth

Truth Limits Good

(A person’s regeneration) takes place through the knowledge and scientifics which are of truth, which are continually implanted in good. that is, in charity, in order that thus he may receive the life of charity; Therefore it is that the affection of truth with the person predominates in his rational; for with regard to the life of charity. which is the celestial life itself. the case is this; with those who are being reformed and regenerated, it is continually being born and is continually maturing and receiving increase, and this through truths; therefore in proportion as more truth is insinuated, so is the life of charity more perfected; wherefore ACCORDING TO THE QUALITY AND QUANTITY OF TRUTH, SO IS CHARITY WITH A PERSON. AC 2189.2

They who are in spiritual life ask and long for truths for the sake of life…and therefore in proportion as they can imbibe truths–according to which uses may come to pass–in the same proportion they are in spiritual life. AC 6119

From this it is evident that no more of charity can be carried into works than is conjoined with the truths of faith. Through these truths charity enters into works, and qualifies them. DLW 253

As truths are what good inflows into, truths are what limit the influx of good…. such as the truths are, such is the reception of good. AC 4205

Good never puts itself forth into uses except by means of truth. AC 10303.2

Truth Is the Form of Good

Faith is the form of charity, or charity formed. AC 9783

Love and charity cannot be formed except by truths from the Word. AR 832.2. AC 688

Faith is nothing but the form of charity just as speech is the form of sound; faith is also formed by charity as speech is formed by sound…. Inquire what faith and charity are. and you will clearly see that faith is charity in form, and thus that charity is everything of faith, consequently that it is the soul. the life, and the essence of faith. AR 875.3

After there is no longer faith there will no longer be charity, for faith leads to charity, because it teaches what charity is, and charity receives its quality from the truths which are of faith, and the truths of faith their essence and life from charity. AC 4060

Charity itself, which is spiritual affection is formed through truths from the Word. AE 232

The Difference that Truth Makes

Good without truth…becomes the good of wisdom by means or the doctrine of truth. AC 4844.6

It is one thing to be in good and another thing to be in the good of doctrine: Little children…are in good, but not in the good of doctrine, and therefore not in the truth of doctrine…but those are in the good of doctrine who have been regenerated through the truths of faith. AC 2572

With some there is still good. but it cannot be called spiritual good, but natural good, because Divine truths are in darkness and Divine truths introduce to charity, for they teach it and regard it as the end in view; hence charity can only come into existence in proportion as there are truths from which it can come into existence. LJ 38

Those who do the goods of charity from religion before they have received the doctrine of the New Church concerning the Lord, may be likened to trees which bear good fruits although few etc. TCR 537

The truths or faith not only illumine charity, but also qualify it, and above all nourish it; wherefore the person who has charity and not the truths of faith, is like one walking in a garden at nighttime, who plucks fruit from the trees, not knowing whether in its use it is good or bad fruit. TCR 377.2

Charity Is in the First Place

Good and Truth Are Like…

Esse and Existere, or Essence and Form

Good or the will is a person’s esse, truth or understanding his existere. AC 3049, 3158.2. 3180, 4002, 4574, 4985, 7796.2. 8267.2. 8325.2. 8724. 9154, 9282, 9297.2. 9806.2, 9954, HD 23, 24, 32, 35, Life 43e, DLW 14, 34, 139, 368, DP 11, 13, AR 872.5, ISB 5.2. AE 1170.6, etc

Good is the esse or essence of truth, has its quality from truth. AC 2429.2 4301, 7759, 5830e

Charity and faith make one like essence and form. AC 379, 4060, F 18.2. CL 87. TCR 367.2.3. TCR

658.3

Good is essential, truths are formal. AC 5207, 6269.3. CL 87.3

Divine Good is the essential of order. Divine truth the formal. AC 4839.2; cf. DLW 40 46, TCR 20

End and Cause

A person’s end is nothing but his love or will. AC 13.17, 1568.2, 1654. 3066e. 3570.2. 3839.4. 4839, 5159.3. 5660.3. etc

Love is the end, wisdom the instrumental cause, and use is the effect. DLW 213, 241, AR 875 CL 400, 401 ISB 5. 17, TCR 13.3, 47

The end is everything of the cause, and the effect is everything of the end through the cause. The end is charity or good, the cause is faith or truth, and the effect is good works or uses. DLW 253e; cf. DP 108, DLW 397, 316.2

Internal and External

The truth which is of faith is external, and the good which is of charity is internal. AC 3870; see refs. below

Faith proceeds from charity, and manifests charity in a kind of form; hence it is evident that the external of charity is faith, and that the internal of faith is charity. AC 3868

The will or love is a person’s inmost. AC 8885.3, 9937.6

Active and Passive or Reactive

Good acts and truth reacts. AC 8691, 10729

But truth never reacts from itself, but from good. AC 10729

For the production of anything there must be two forces, one called active. and the other passive…Such forces or lives are charity and faith in the person of the church. AC 7754

All the good of love and of charity is the essential activity itself. AC 1561

Actives are called celestial things, passives are called spiritual things. SD 1741

Soul and Body

Good is the soul or life of truth, and truth is as a body for good. AC 1910, 3207.5, 3300, 6077.2, 6344, 7056, 8530, 8459e, 9174, 10555

Both good and truth are called the soul; but still good is principally the soul. AC 3299e

Flame and Light

Truth does not shine from itself, because in it alone there is nothing flaming; but it shines from good, for good is like a flame from which comes light. AC 4742.2

Charity may be compared to flame. which is the essential of heat and light. for the heat and light come therefrom. AC 365, 2231.2, 3222, 3798e. 3862, 3938.5. 4245e, 5637, 5816.2, 6135.2. 6272, 6400, HD 24, etc.

Lord and Servant

‘A lord’ means good because with the spiritual person good is in the first place and truth is in the second. AC 9170

Good is called ‘lord.’ AC 4242. 4972, 4974, 5510, 5903, 9154

Service means all that which is beneath, which is subordinate, and which obeys; thus truth because it is from good and ministers to good. AC 3409, 3441

To serve is predicated of truths. AC 3581, 5237, 8974 9806.4 AR 3. 128, 943

Truths, regarded in themselves. are more fully servants than their goods are. AC 2567.8

Good cannot be conjoined with truths unless the person humbles and submits himself. Humiliation and submission are predicated of truths because truths inflow through the external person. AC 4347.3

So long as faith wants to have the dominion, It is not faith; but when charity has the dominion then there is faith for the principal of faith is charity. AC 365

Good is called Lord, and truth servant, before they have been conjoined. (Afterwards they are called brothers.) AC 4267e

Husband and Wife

This is also represented in marriages between a husband and wife who constitute one house, by reason that conjugial love comes forth from the Divine marriage of good an truth (n. 2728, 2729, 3132); and both the husband and the wife have a will from good, but with a difference such as is that of good in respect to its own truth; and therefore good is meant by the husband, and truth by the wife; for when there is one house, then good is the all therein. and truth, being of good. is also good. AC 3538

The husband represents good, because it is in the first place; and the wife truth, because it is in the second place. AC 32 10

Father and Son

Truth is to good as a son to his father. AC 3704.5, 4973.7

Science, intelligence, and wisdom are the sons of love to the Lord and of love towards the neighbor. (AC 1226, 2049, 2116). HD 51

Firstborn and Secondborn

Good or charity is the firstborn, although truth appears to be. AC 2435, 3325.4. 3863.2. 4812, 4925, 6272, 6273, 6342, 6344, etc.

.Illustrated by Cain and Abel, Esau and Jacob, Pharez and Zerah, Ephraim and Manasseh. AC 367, 2435; compare Ishmael and Isaac, Reuben and Judah, Leah and Rachel, Joseph and 10 brothers, Moses and Aaron

Body and Clothing

Good is like a body, and truth is the clothing or covering for it. AC 1073, 2189, 3084, 3703.12, 5248,8530

Good is to truth as the body is to arms and feet; and in birds, to the wings. AC 9514.2

Heart and Lungs

The church is circumstanced as is the case with a person himself…. The first of his life is the heart and the second of his life is the lungs. AC 9276.6. See also DLW Pt. V. AC 9300, TCR 37.3, etc.

Fruit and Leaves

A person is like a tree. his faith like leaves, his charity like fruit. 3427.3, 5115, 5116, 7966e, DP 332.3

Good is a person’s chief thing, even as the fruit is the chief thing of a tree. 9337, 7690, AR 84

Truth Is a Vessel or Container for Good

AC 1496, 2063.3, 2261e, 2269.3. 3068, 3079.4. 3318.2. 3387, 5212, 9922.3

Charity Is Actually First

Good Is Prior, Primary, First, Superior

The veriest truth of the church is that love to the Lord and love towards the neighbor are the primary things. AC 4776

Good or charity is actually in the first place or is the first of the church, and truth or faith is in the second place, or is the second of the church, although it appears otherwise. HD 121e

The goods of life are to be regarded in the first place, that is, as of the greatest importance; for in proportion as a person is in the goods of life, lie is really in the truths of doctrine, but not conversely. The reason is that the goods of life open the interiors of the mind; and when these are opened truths appear in their own light, from which they are not only understood, but are also loved. AR 82

The good of love to the Lord and charity toward the neighbor is superior and prior to the truth of faith, and not the reverse. AC 3324e

When a person has been regenerated, the affection for good has the lead and from good he is affected with truth. AC 1904

Good is actually firstborn. AC 4925

The good itself, which is of life is prior. AC 3324

Who cannot see from natural light alone, provided it is enlightened a little, that good is in the prior place as is also a person’s will; and that truth is in the posterior place, as is also the person’s thinking? And also that the person’s will causes him to think one way and not another, consequently that the good with a person causes this or that to be true; thus that truth is in the second place, and good in the first? AC 6273

Good makes for itself the truth with which it may be conjoined. 3324.3

It appears as if truth were prior, but it is good, for good forms truths and adapts them to itself. Therefore regarded in themselves truths are nothing else than goods formed. AC 4926

From love and charity a person can look to the truths which pertain to the doctrinal things of faith, but not the reverse. AC 2454. 3324.3

Charity Has Dominion over Faith

Charity and not faith should have dominion. AC 363

Faith…becomes faith when charity rules, for charity is the principal of faith. AC 364

By prior, or priority, which is meant by the birthright, is meant not only priority of time, but also priority of degree; that is, as to which should have the dominion, good or truth…. (The regenerate see and perceive that truth is posterior and inferior. and then in them good has dominion over truth…. That good is the firstborn…is evident from the fact that there is life in good, but none in truth except from good. AC 3325.4

In itself good is prior and superior (…and has dominion). AC 3336

(In the regenerate person) good comes forth and openly has dominion…. It will be in the prior place. AC 3576.2

When he is in charity. then for the first time he perceives what is good, and acts from good, and then judges and draws conclusions from this good concerning truths; and those which do not accord with this good he calls false. and rejects. Thus he rules over truths as a master over his servants. AC 3330

Good Is Also First in Time

In a human being the will precedes; for his willing is the first of his life, and his understanding comes after, and applies itself in accordance with his willing. AC 535 1

Infants are first of all in good, so that good is the firstborn with every one. AC 3494

The first of all that is appropriated to a person is good and successively truth…. That good is that which is first of all appropriated to a person from the Lord is evident from his infancy and early childhood…This good flows in from the Lord with infants so that it may serve in advancing age for the first of the Lord’s life with the person, and thus for a plane to receive truths. AC 10 110

In the beginning before he begins to be regenerated, even then good is continually flowing in…. Even at that time good is in the first place and acts the principal part. AC 4247.2

But it should be known that this circle (of a person’s life and regeneration) is instituted from the will, which is the inmost of a person’s life. and that it begins there, and is from this accomplished…though it appears otherwise. AC 10057.4

Charity Is the Internal of a Person and the Church

A person’s internal, and heaven in the person, is charity.… One who has not lived in charity can never believe that in good will. and from good will to do good to others, there is heaven and its joy. AC 4776

An internal church is one in which charity is the principal. and that from which it thinks and acts. AC 1228

The internal people (of the church) are they who make charity the principal of faith; the corrupt internal people are they who make faith without charity the principal of faith. AC 1062

The good of faith or charity is the essential. thus in the first place, with those who are of the genuine spiritual church…hence it is evident that the Lord’s church is not here or there, but that it is everywhere where people live according to the precept of charity. AC 8152

If they knew how much peace, joy and happiness there are in charity, they would know what heaven is…. No one can know what the internal person is and his life after death, except he who is in charity, for charity is of the internal person. AC 4783.3.4

Charity is the inmost, that is, the principal of faith and worship. AC 1074

The internal person is charity and never faith without charity. AC 1078. 1083.4

What is doctrinal itself does not make the external, still less the internal…. but it is life according to doctrinal things all of which when true, regard charity as their fundamental. AC 1799.3

What is doctrinal separated from love or charity never makes the internal of the church, for what is doctrinal is only knowledge, which is of the memory…But what is doctrinal, when it is from charity, or of charity, does make the internal. because this is of the life. The life itself is the internal of all worship, and so is everything doctrinal which flows from the life of charity AC 1798.4

A Person’s Love Determines the Quality of His Life

It is the love which distinguishes for each person is his own love. It is supposed that wisdom distinguishes, but the wisdom is from the love…. It is believed in the world that the understanding makes the person;…but this is an appearance. DLW 368, cf. 418

Such as is the love with a person, such is the wisdom, the faith, the truths, such is the whole person. AC 4352, 9568.4. 10201.5, 10284.2. DLW 241.2. 368, AE 204.2, 832.6, 1170.6, AC 33, 708 1, 10038.2. 10153, 10740, DP 199e, 222. HD 54

A person is such as is his love; and not such as is his understanding; because the love easily carries away the understanding to its side. CL 269.2

The good of love gives quality to all truth. AE 625

The quality of every person is known from the love…. Such as is the love with a person, such is the person. AC 6872.2

The love and will of a person enter into all things of his faith and thought; but the faith and thought cannot enter into his love and will for that which the person loves he also loves to do, he loves to know, he loves to think. he loves to speak, and he loves to understand; thus he also loves to have for his faith. AE 789.4

Such as is the good. such are the truths it conjoins with itself. It is good which acknowledges them, and couples itself as a husband with a wife. AC 4358.2

The life of the will is the principal life of a person, and the life of the understanding proceeds therefrom. (refs.) HD 35

The Lord furnishes truths according to the reception of good by each person. AC 5952.2

Falsities are made true by good and grow soft when they are applied and turned to good, and evil is removed. HD 2 1. AC 8149

Love Is What Orders the Mind and the Truths within It

Truth cannot be ordered into the heavenly form except by good. AC 7608

The truths of the church…do not come into any order except through Christian good that is, through the good of charity and of love to the Lord; for the Lord is in good. AC 5704

Truths of faith arranged in order by the good of love. AC 8370

Love is what determines each and all things;, and without love everything would be confused. SD 3906

There is in good a continual endeavor of arranging truths in order, and of restoring its state thereby (n. 3610). HD 27

The order in which scientifics and truths are arranged in a person’s memory is unknown to the person…scientifics and truths are arranged into these fascicular forms solely by the person’s loves; into hellish forms by the loves of self and of the world; but into heavenly forms by love towards the neighbor and love to God. AC 5881

The good of love. works in a person while he is being regenerated, and disposes the truths with him into order; and afterward, when he has been regenerated. it keeps them in their order. AC 9846

Love introduces order immediately into the understanding. and by mediate things into the whole of a person. Additions III, 1

All setting in order is by good through truths. AC 8643.2

Love with each and all things of itself inflows into wisdom, and resides in it like a king in his kingdom…and relinquishes all the government of love to its wisdom. TCR 50

Confirmatory facts are always coming to hand, both from the Word and from the rational person and scientifics; thus he confirms himself more and more; which is the effect of charity. AC 984e

Love cannot have any other origin than the Divine love itself which is from the Lord; thus love is the Divine which flows into forms, and disposes them…. AC 5807.2

The Lord Is Present in Faith (and in A Human Being) Only through Charity

Charity or love towards the neighbor and mercy, are what alone conjoin a human being to the Lord. AC 389,379

The Divine with those who have faith in Him is love and charity. AC 2023, HH 14, 17

The Divine Human of the Lord is pure love and the Holy is of Love alone. AC 2343.7

The operation of the Lord is into the love of a person, and from that into his understanding. and not the reverse. AE 1153.6

A human being is for the first time called regenerate when he acts from charity…. Jehovah is in charity but not so in faith before it is joined to charity; charity is a person’s very being and living in the other life. and the very being and living is Jehovah. AC 840

The Lord is present solely in charity.…The Lord is present with every one, but in proportion as one is distant from charity, the Lord’s presence is, so to speak. more absent. AC 981.2

‘Japheth’ means those who do not know what the internal person is, and the things of the internal person, and still live in charity. With these the Lord is equally present, for the Lord operates through charity, wherever charity is. AC 1100

To live in the Lord is never possible unless one lives in His love, that is, in charity towards the neighbor. AC 1735e

The church which commences from charity has good for a director, and in good, the Lord; for the good which is of charity and love comes in between the Lord and faith without this no spiritual communication is possible, for there is no influx without an intermediate. AC 4672

Through charity is the conjunction of the Lord with a person, and through faith the conjunction of the person with the Lord. F 22

The reason conjunction is effected by charity is that God loves every one, and as He cannot do good to people directly, but only indirectly through other people. He inspires into them His own love. TCR 457.3

The Lord is present in charity, and not in faith without it. AE 213

Presence of the Lord is in charity. AC 1013, 1023, 1032, 1038, 1039, 1044, 1055. 1059, 1150,1737

Love Is the Source of Everything

The universal heaven is founded on love; in fact, the universal nature; for there is not anything in nature…which does not derive its origin from love. AC 1055

Charity Is the Source of the Affection for Truth

All genuine affection for truth is from good and according to it. (AC 4373, 8349, 8356) HD 23

When a a person is affected by truth, it is not from truth, but from the good which inflows into the truth…. No one is in the affection of truth but he who is in good, that is, in charity towards the neighbor or, still more, in love to the Lord…. They who are in the affection of truth from the good of genuine charity, if they hear that charity makes the church, but not faith separated from it, receive this truth with joy; but they why are in the affection of truth from the love of self and of the world, do not receive it. AC 4368.2

Charity in its first origin is the affection of good, and as good loves truth. it produces the affection of truth, and through this, the acknowledgment of truth which is faith. Faith 13

They who are in the spiritual affection of truth are also in the life of charity. for thence comes their spiritual affection; charity is the sole source to a person of what is spiritual. AE 112.4

From this it is evident how full is the doctrine of love to the Lord; for it is the doctrine of all the affections which are of love; and each affection has truths inscribed on it…AE 826e

Charity Is the Source of Enlightenment

If charity were in the first place…. the church would be in enlightenment; ..for charity enlightens, and never faith without charity; and the errors induced by faith without charity would be clearly seen. AC 6269.2

All spiritual light comes through good from the Lord, thus through charity. AC 7950.2

All enlightenment is from good. AC 3094, 3102. 3128, 3138, 4214, 6405, 7012, 9086, 9300.5, 9382

The light of truth with a person is according to the state of his love for in proportion as love is kindled, in the same proportion truths shines. AC 10201

The spiritual mind is opened by means of charity, and when it is opened, there inflow light and the affection of understanding truths out of heaven from the Lord; hence comes enlightenment. AR 85

The light of heaven from the Lord’s Divine Human cannot reach any except those who live in the good of faith, that is, in charity. AC 2776e

The new or first light of the regenerate never comes forth from the knowledges of the truths of faith, but from charity; for the truths of faith are like rays of light, and love or charity is like the flame. The lumen in one who is to be regenerated is not from the truths of faith, but from charity. AC 854

Because they receive charity, the Lord, through charity, operates into their cloud (that is, into the dim light in which the spiritual are), and thus light arises. as when the sun glances on a cloud. AC 1043.2

He who believes that they who are in evil of life can be also in enlightenment as to the truths of faith is terribly mistaken AC 7950.2; cf. 7435, 7680

Charity Is the Source of Wisdom

Everything is called wisdom which is begotten from charity, because it comes through charity from the Lord, from whom is all wisdom because He Is wisdom itself. AC 1226

Love to the Lord and love toward the neighbor have within them all intelligence and wisdom. AC 4899e, 2500.3. 2572.2. 7750.2, HH 467

What then would there not be in heavenly love, if a person were in this? Would there not be the all of wisdom and intelligence, which is in heaven? AC 4776.5

Truth has its origin from good. AC 6717, 3111.2

(A discussion about)…whether heaven in its essence is love, or wisdom. The angels agreed that one is of the other, but questioned which is the original…. Wisdom from its origin is love…Love is the all of wisdom. AR 875.2

Charity Is the Source of Understanding

Charity contains in itself the willing of truth; and by this it contains in itself the understanding of truth. AC 3877.2

No one can understand what is true unless he is in good that is in charity. AC 3412.3

He who Is not in the affection of charity cannot at all know what the spiritual is. AC 5639.3

He who teaches faith and not charity, can never perceive the higher or more interior things of the church; for he has not anything to lead him, and to dictate to him whether a thing is true; but if he teaches charity, he then has good, which is a dictate to him, and leads him for all truth is from good and treats of good. or what is the same, all faith is from charity, and treats of charity. AC 4715

They who separate truths from good are in darkness…. The Word is shut to them…. They do not see and attend to all those things which the Lord spoke concerning love and charity thus concerning good…. They know not what good is, nor what heavenly love and charity are…. A person does not know what good is, before he is in it and knows from it. HD 24

Truth from the Divine inflows through the medium into the good of faith, and through this in to the truth thereof; or what is the same, into the willing of truth, and through this into the understanding of truth; or what is still the same, into charity towards the neighbor, and through this into faith. There is no other way of influx with the person who is regenerate, or with angels. AC 5482

He who is in charity, that is, lives in good, receives such truths from the Lord as agree with his good…But he who is not in charity, that is, does not live in good, can never receive any truth; he may indeed know truth, but it Is not implanted in his life. AC 3267.2

If a person first knew good and truth from doctrine conjoined with life, or from life conjoined with doctrine, he would know and perceive innumerable things concerning good and truth. AC 3612.2

The Lord does not teach anyone truths openly, but through good, leads him to think what is true…Thus the Lord adapts truths according to the reception of good by each person. AC 5952

The Lord gives a person the ability to understand truth, but the reason he does not understand it, is that he does not want to understand it, and this is on account of the evil which is of life. AC 8307e

Charity Is the Source of Doctrine

Spiritual good is more than doctrine; doctrine is from this good wherefore he who arrives at spiritual good, has no longer any need of the doctrinal things which are from others for he is then at the end to which they tend, and is no longer in the means; and doctrinal things are nothing but means for arriving at good as at their end. AC 5997

Nothing which is of doctrine nor even anything which is of knowledge can enter a person, except by means of affections; for there is life in affections; but not in truths of doctrine and of knowledge without them. AC 3849

Doctrine is not perceived without life according to the doctrine. The reason is that a life according to the doctrine which is from the Word opens the spiritual mind, and the light from heaven inflows into it and enlightens and gives to perceive. That it is so he does not know who knows truths of doctrine, and yet does not live according to them. AR 320

The doctrine of charity and faith is spiritual from a celestial origin not a rational one. AC 2496.7, 2510, 2531

All the conception of doctrine is from good as a father, whereas its birth is from truth as a mother. AC 2586

There exist the good and the truth of doctrine; the good of doctrine is love and charity, the truth of doctrine is faith: they who are in the good of doctrine, that is, in love and charity, are in the truth of doctrine that is, in faith.…Those who are in the truth of doctrine separated from good…see nothing of good, nor anything of truth except very slightly and superficially. and this defiled with falsities. AC 2572

Charity Is the Source of Understanding of the Internal Sense

As the Word is the doctrine of good, therefore in order that the Word may be understood, it must be known what good is* and no one knows what good is unless he lives in good according to the Word for when any one lives in good according to the Word, then the Lord insinuates good into his life, from which the person perceives it and feels it, and consequently apprehends the nature of it; otherwise it does not appear, because it is not perceived. AC 9780

People also would apprehend the Word according to this (internal) sense if they lived an angelic life, that is a life of faith and love…. They who live this life are enlightened by the Lord and see the holy things of the Word. AC 9086

He who has charity does all the commandments in the internal sense. SE 4632

They who are only in knowledge…and in nocharity towards the neighbor, cannot but deny that there is an internal sense of the Word…. In proportion as anyone is in the good of life, that is, in love to the Lord and charity towards the neighbor, he is in intelligence. that is. in faith from the Lord; hence also it is that…he cannot but be in the affirmative in relation to the internal sense of the Word. AC 3427

These things here advanced are indeed such as to fall into the comprehension of extremely few…. There may be some who will comprehend them. They who are in the desire of knowing such things, that is, they who are in the affection for spiritual good and truth, are enlightened in regard to such matters. AC 3974.3

These things (from the internal sense) cannot possibly be apprehended by those who are in the affection of self and of the world. AC 36 10

…These and similar truths can never be believed unless the person is in good; for it is good which comprehends. AC 3175.e

They who have not been regenerated can have no apprehension of the matter, being without knowledges because without perceptions; in fact, they know nothing whatever of what regeneration is, nor do they believe that it is possible. They do not even know what the affection for charity is…. The words they may indeed know, and many do know them, but they are ignorant of the reality…However clearly the arcana here contained in the internal sense should be set forth, it would still be like presenting something to the sight in the dark, or telling something to the deaf. Moreover the affections of the love of self and of the world that reign with them do not permit them to know, nor even to hear such things; for they immediately reject them, in fact, spit them out. Very different is the case with those who are in the affection for charity. These are delighted with such things…AC 4027.2

These things which have been said must needs appear obscure. especially for the reason that it is known to few what the spiritual person is. and to scarcely any one what the celestial person is…. The reason why this has not been known, is that there is no distinct perception of the good of love and charity, and of the truth which is of faith; and these are not perceived because there is no longer any genuine charity and where anything is not, there is no perception of it. AC 4286

Charity Is the Source of Understanding of the Lord

No one can believe in the Lord unless he is in good, that is. no one can have faith unless he is in charity (John 1: 12,13.). AC 2343.5

No others are able to conjoin the idea of three into one, than they who are in the faith of charity for the Lord applies the mind of these to Himself. AC 2329e

They who are in…charity adore the Lord as their God and Savior…but when they are thinking from doctrine, as they cannot comprehend how his Human can be Divine, they speak from what is doctrinal. AC 4731e

The reason why they who are in evil within the church reject charity more than they deny the Lord is that they are thus able to favor their own concupiscences by a kind of religion, and to have external worship with no internal. AC 2373.2

…But he who is not in worldly and bodily loves is capable of perceiving this, for he believes that the Lord is one with the Father…AC 3212.2

Of God as a Divine Person…some idea may be formed from the Human; and an idea which is formed from the Human is accepted. of whatever kind it may be, provided it flows from the good of innocence. and is in the good of charity. AC 5321.2

See also AC 2326, 3241, 4689, 4724.4. 4766, 6872. 8878, 9193, 9198.

Charity Is the Source of Acknowledgment and Faith

The first offspring of charity is nothing but faith, for this is the source of faith, and there is no other. AC 1228

Acknowledgment can never exist with anyone unless the principal of faith be with him, which is charity, that is, love towards the neighbor and mercy:…when charity is present, which is the goodness of faith, then acknowledgment is present, which is the truth of faith…AC 654

With those who live in what is contrary to charity, no acknowledgment is ever possible, but only a kind of persuasion. to which there is adjoined the life of the love of self or of the world. AC 2261.2

There is no acknowledgment of the Lord or no faith when there is no charity, for faith is never possible except with those who are in charity. AC 3353

The internal acknowledgement of truth, which is faith. is possible only with those who are in charity. F 13

Everything of faith is from charity, and nothing of it from itself. Also, charity produces faith and not faith charity F 31e

It has been shown that charity produces faith as good produces truth, and as affection produces thought, likewise as fire produces light, wherefore it is speaking entirely against order, and inversely, to say that faith produces charity or its goods, which are called good works. AE 795

Doctrinal things are said to be of faith, although they are not of faith before they are conjoined with charity. AC 1832.2

They who have lived in charity, and no others, are capable of receiving and being imbued with all truths, that is, with all things of faith. AC 4776.5

Charity Is the Source of Conscience

They who are being regenerated receive a conscience when they receive charity. for the fundamental of conscience is charity. AC 1033

When charity has been extinguished, the person is left to himself…no longer ruled by the Lord through…conscience. AC 1011

After…charity was given through faith, conscience succeeded. AC 371

If there be not in a person…some plane, the influent good and truth cannot be received…. This plane is acquired by charity towards the neighbor, that is by mutual love; this plane is what is called conscience. AC 3957.7

Without charity towards the neighbor conscience has no existence. SDmin 4547

The Lord’s influx with a person is through charity into his conscience. AC 1835

Conscience can never exist except from charity. Charity is that which makes conscience. AC 1076

Through good, that is through charity, a person is given conscience. AC 2063e

Those have conscience who have receives new will from the Lord; that very will itself is conscience…. As the good of charity makes the new will, it also makes conscience. AC 9115

See also AC 1835.2. 2380, 1994.

Putting Charity First Unites the Church

The Ancient Church Was One Because They Made Charity the Essential

This doctrine conjoined all the churches. HD 9

The doctrine is one, when in all there is mutual love, or charity. AC 1285

In ancient times there were many churches all at once and they all differed as at this day as to doctrinal things; but still they made one in this, that they acknowledged love to the Lord and charity towards the neighbor as the chief and as the essential thing. AC 2982

The doctrinal and ritual things of the Ancient church were various, but still there was one church because they did not make faith but charity the essential thing. AC 3268.10

The particulars are of no account…provided they regard one end, which is, to love the Lord above all things, and the neighbor as ourselves; for in this case the particulars belong to the generals. AC 1288

The doctrine of charity was the doctrine in the ancient churches, and that doctrine conjoined all churches, and thus of many made one for they acknowledge as people of the church all who lived in the good of charity. and called them brethren, however greatly they might be at variance in the truths which at this day are called the truths of faith. In these they instructed one another; this being among their works of charity; nor were they indignant if one did not accede to the opinion of another, knowing that everyone receives truth in proportion as he is in good. AC 6628

People differed much among themselves as to doctrinal matters, but still made charity the principal. AC 1799.5

The Heavens Are One Because Love and Charity Are the Essentials

The Lord’s spiritual kingdom in the heavens is one; the reason is, that charity is the principal with all for charity makes the spiritual church, not faith, unless you call charity faith. He who is in charity loves the neighbor, and his dissenting from him in matters of belief he excuses, provided he lives in good and truth; he does not even condemn the upright gentiles, although they are ignorant of the Lord and know nothing of faith. AC 3267.2

The case is the same with the goods and truths in the spiritual world, which although they are various…still make one from the Divine through love and charity for love and charity are spiritual conjunction…. Moreover, the good of love to the Lord and the good of charity towards the neighbor, however various truths may be, and however various the affections of truth may be are still able to receive genuine truth and good; for they are so to speak, not hard and unyielding, but are as it were soft and yielding; for they suffer themselves to be led by the Lord. and thus to be bent to good, and through good to Him. AC 3986.2

When with each and all love to the Lord and charity toward the neighbor–that is, the good of life–is the essential thing, then churches. however numerous they may be make one church all then being one in the Lord’s kingdom. Such also is heaven; there are innumerable societies there, all distinct; but still they constitute one heaven, because in all there is love to the Lord and charity toward the neighbor. AC 2982

(All people) who live in charity are in one angelic society. AC 1277

The Churches Today Would Be One If Charity Were the Essential

When life makes the church and not doctrine separated from life, the church is one but when doctrine makes the church, there are many. AC 8152e

Regarded in itself good is one but it is made various through truths. AC 4149.2

At this day people speak of the church as existing from the mere doctrinals of faith, and thereby distinguish the churches of the Lord, not caring what life people live…. But the Church is with those who love the Lord and who love the neighbor as themselves, who have conscience. AC 1844

If charity were in the first place, and faith in the second, the church would have a different face, for then none would be called Christians but they who live a life according to the truth of faith, that is a life of charity. AC 6269.2

They divide the church into as many churches as there are diverse doctrines concerning the truths which are of faith; which would not be the case if they were in light. For he who is in light never doubts, still less denies that love to the Lord and charity toward the neighbor are the essentials of the church and that upon them are based all the truths of the Word, consequently all the truths of faith. AC 8928.3

As there are dissensions about the most essential thing of all (i.e., the Trinity), it is evident that the varieties and differences of doctrinal things are innumerable…but notwithstanding there being so many varieties and differences of doctrinal things, or so many derivations. they nevertheless all together form one church when all acknowledge charity as the essential of the church. AC 3241.3

All doctrinal things whatever, provided they are from the Word, are accepted by the Lord, provided he who is in them is in the life of charity. AC 3452e

Many worships and varieties matter little if there is charity in all. SE 4535; cf. AC 3451e, 13l6

(In the primitive church all lived together as brethren), but in the course of time charity grew less and vanished; and then evils followed; hence came schisms and heresies, which never would be if charity were to reign and live; for then they would not even call schism schism, nor heresy heresy, but a doctrinal matter according to the person’s opinion, which they would leave to everyone’s conscience; provided only that he did not deny the principles that is, the Lord, eternal life, and the Word; and provided he were not against Divine order, that is, the commandments of the Decalogue. AC 1834

If (Christians) would make love to the Lord and charity towards the neighbor the principal of faith, all these sects would be merely varieties of opinions concerning the mysteries of faith, which truly Christian people would leave to everyone to hold in accordance with his conscience, and would say in their hearts that a person is truly a Christian when he lives as a Christian. that is as the Lord teaches. Thus from all the differing churches there would be made one church; And all the dissensions that come forth from doctrine alone would vanish; in fact, all hatred of one against another would be dissipated in a moment. and the Lord’s kingdom would come upon the earth. AC 1799.4

Then everyone would say, in whatever doctrine, and in whatever external worship he was. ‘This is my brother, I see that he worships the Lord, and is good.’ AC 2385e

Reformation and Regeneration

Each person may be oriented either towards good more, or towards truth more. In general, the celestial are more oriented towards good and the spiritual more oriented towards truth. (AC 2928.5, 2710, 6427, 8042, etc.) However, although the spiritual are in general more oriented towards truth, they still have two states, the first proceeding from truth to good, and the second going from good to truth. (AC 3122, 3157e, 3240.2) For the most part, the passages below apply to the reformation and regeneration of the spiritual person. Some of the passages apply more broadly, and may be true not only of the spiritual person, but also of the celestial person, or even to the states of deformation and degeneration with an evil person. (Cf. AC 5159)

Of course, the process of reformation involves several distinct steps.

In his first age a person knows only by memory the things that are in the Word, in like manner the things which are in the doctrinal things of faith; and be believes himself to be good when he knows many things from this source, and can apply them, not to his own life, but to the lives of others. In his second age, when he is more grown up, he is not content merely to know by memory the things which are in the Word and in doctrinal things, but begins to reflect upon them from his own thought and in proportion as he adds something over and above from what is his own, it is pleasing to him…But in the third age if he is one of those who can be regenerated, he begins to think about use and then begins to reflect upon those things which he reads in the Word and draws from doctrinal things for the sake of use. And when he is in this state, the order is inverted. namely, truth is no longer set so much in the first place. And in the fourth age, which is the age of his regeneration…he loves the Word and the doctrinal things which are from the Word, that is truth, for the sake of the good of life, and therefore from the good of life. AC 3603.3; cf. AC 10225, 3332

These several stages of reformation are not distinguished in the following material. Consequently some of the passages which describe the state of reformation may actually be describing only a part of that state, and are not true for the whole period of reformation. While in general this shift from reformation to regeneration takes a lifetime (AC 10225), it is repeated in lesser ways many times throughout a person’s life, in alternating cycles (cf. AC 3200, 933, 935, 10057).

ReformationRegeneration
The state of Reformation (TCR 571) is sometimes described as the time before regeneration, AC 4241, 4551 or when he is being regenerated. AC 3669.2. 5804.The state of regeneration (TCR 571) is when a person is regenerated. AC 3669.2. 4241.
In Good from TruthIn Truth from Good
During reformation a person is in good from truth. AC 3669.2. That is, in truths from which is good. AC 4241 Through truths he is introduced to good. AC 3330 From or through truths he looks to good. AC 6247, AE 1168.3. TCR 57 1. Truths enter through the understanding into the will and become good. AC 9274 When regenerated he is in truths from good AC 3669.2. 4241, 4551, AE 1168.3. TCR 571 He sees (looks to) truths from good. AC 4928, 6247 From the good of charity he produces truths. AC 4241, 8042 Goods go from heaven through the will into the understanding. AC 9274
He looks from left to right.He looks from right to left. AE 1168.3
Acting from TruthActing from Good
In the first state be acts from truth. AC 3203.3. 3539, 4269.2, 8505. 8643. 8648. He does good from faith. AC 3463.2 His life is according to the precepts of faith. AC 8013.2 He does works of faith which flow from faith as their soul. AC 3934.2 In the second state he acts from good AC 3203.3, 3539, 4269.2, 4928, 8505, 8516, 8643.8648,10729,10076 From affection. AC 8505. From charity. AC 3463.2 His life is according to the precepts of charity. AC 8013.2 He does works of charity which flow from charity. AC 3934.2 He speaks from the good of charity by truths of faith and acts according to them. AC 10057.4
Led by TruthLed by Good
At first, he is led to good by means of truth. AC 5804, 8042, 8539.2, 8701, 9227, 9274, 10729. He is led by faith in the understanding, or doctrine, to faith in will, or life. AC 8042 His state is formed by truths of faith. TCR 571 Later, he is led to truth by good. AC 5804, 8516, 8539.2. 8701 His state is formed by goods of charity. TCR 571.
To be led by truth is to lead oneself . AC 8505, 8513, 8516, 8517 That is, it means to be led by the Lord by means of one’s selfish desires. AC 8512, 8686. 8701, 8722.8750,10729. To be led by good is to be led by the Lord directly. AC 8510, 8512. 9274, 10729.
To the extent that truth becomes the leader, good is obscured. To the extent that good becomes the leader, truth is manifest in its own light. AC 2407e.
Truth Apparently RulesGood Manifestly Rules
Truth has dominion. AC 3330, 8505 Truth is apparently first. AC 4243, 3539, 2979. He believes truth to be both prior and superior. AC 3325 3336. Good rules. AC 8505, 8856 Good is actually, manifestly first. AC 3336, 3539, 4269.2. 2979 He sees and perceives that truth is posterior. AC 3325 Charity, which was the end, becomes the beginning. AC 5122.2. 3463.2, 935.2 He judges truths from good, rules over truths. AC 3330 Truth submits itself to good. AC 4269.2
Affection for TruthAffection for Good
He is in the affection for truth. AC 2979, 4245. The affection for truth leads. AC 1904 He is in the affection for good. AC 4245 The affection for good leads. AC 1904
He is affected with truth for the sake of good. AC 1904 He is affected with truth from good. AC 1904
He is in the affection for truth for the sake of becoming intelligent AC 6247 He is in the affection for truth for the sake of becoming wise. AC 6247
Knows a Little from DoctrineSees Clearly from Good
He knows scarcely anything about spiritual good or charity. AC 4977, 3463.2, 5804 He knows charity only from doctrine. AC 8013.2. 5804 He looks from truths at what is to be believed and done. 8772.2 He does not know what good is from himself (AC 33 10) or from affection. AC 8013.2 He has many falsities mixed with truths. AC 4551 He knows no otherwise than that it is truths he is speaking. SE 5917. He perceives what is good. AC 3330 Feels good of charity. TCR 571 Charity is constantly present in his thought and will. AC 8856 He sees and loves truth from good. AC 5804, 8772.2. 10729 He perceives and knows from good that they are true. AC 4241, TCR 571 From good he produces new truths which he did not and could not know before. AC 5804 For the first time he is in wisdom. AC 3203.3 Falsities are separated. AC 4551
Good from ObedienceGood from Affection
He does good from obedience not affection or charity. AC 8690.2, 8987, 8988, 9193e, 9320e, 8979.2, 3463.2 From compulsion, not freedom. AC 8690.2 From the will of others. AC 8988 From truths of faith, from the intellect, from what is external. AC 8988. 8979.2 He does good from affection, from charity. AC 8690.2. 9230e 8987, 8988, 8979.2., 3463.2, He does the commandments from affection. from love. AC 8987 9193e From his will, of himself, from the internal. AC 8988, 8979.2 From his heart, from freedom, from delight. AC 8987, 8690.2. 3463.2
Thought from DoctrineThought from Word, from Self, from Life
In the first state, a person knows what good is only from doctrine. AC 5804. 5280.3. 3310. 8013.2. He thinks only from the doctrine of others or of the church. SE 5917, AE 114.4. 233, AC 3463.2. 6717 He is then thinking and speaking from the memory of his natural person. AE 114.4 He is not thinking for himself. SE 5917, AC 6717 In the second state, a person thinks for himself, outside of doctrine. SE 5917, AE 114.4 From his own will, his love, his life. SE 5917 From his spirit. AE 114.4 From the Word or preaching from the Word. AE 233 This is a person’s proper state after death. SE 5917, AE 114.4; cf. LJ(post) 34
In the first state a person looks from doctrine to life. AC 3281, 3310, 3463.2. 6717 He is in the affection for truth for the sake of doctrine. AC 6247 He receives the truth of doctrine. AC 6717 In the second state the person regards doctrine from life. AC 3281 He is in the affection for truth for the sake of life. AC 6247 He then receives genuine truth of good AC 6717 He studies life more than doctrine. AC 4928 He does not care for truths from any source than those which he himself can see from his own good AC 8772.2 He loves doctrine for the sake of life. AC 4269.2 He does what is good from the good itself which he has learned through doctrine. AC 3310.
KnowingDoing
Reformation is a state of thought from the understanding TCR 571. He is then learning truths and seeing them. AC 9274, 3876. He is in the affection for knowing truth. AC 4247. Regeneration is a state of love from the will. TCR 571. He then is willing truths and doing them. AC 8643. 9274, 3876, 4269.2. He is in the affection for doing truth. AC 4247.
He learns truth from affection, but does not yet live it much. AC 4243 He lives according to the truth. AC 4243
Understanding SeparatedWill and Understanding One
At first the will and understanding are separate. AE 1168.3, AC 8701 Only truth is received although good also flows in. AC 8648 Truths are in the process of being implanted in good. AC 10057.4, 10076. Later the understanding and will are one. AE 1168.3. 8701 Truth has been conjoined with good. AC 4928, 8648.
Impure AffectionsPure Affections
In the beginning the affection for truth is impure AC 3089 It is from the delight of love of self and the world. AC 3330 Not for sake of life. AC 3563 He seems to act from the heart, but self glory is involved. AC 8987 He practices charity to be seen and get recompense AC 8987 He begins from cold, that is, from no faith and charity. AC 935.2, cf. 933 They who do works from truth, and not yet from good. cannot but occasion a lack of order in their natural. AC 6406 Later, he rejects glory and reputation as ends. AC 6247 He does not think of merit. AC 3463.2 He is affected with truth for the sake of life. AC 3563.
TemptationPeace
In the first state be is tempted AC 8643. 10367.3 In the second, the person has rest and the Lord has rest. AC 10367.3
Untranquil. AC 8722e. It is tranquil, peaceful. 8722e
The first combat is about truth because this is what he primarily loves. After the person loves good more than truth, he is tempted as to good. AC 4274.2; cf. 734,735.751,847
Direct InfluxDirect and Indirect Influx
He receives immediate influx only. AC 8690.2. 8701 Both good and truth flow in, but only the truth is received. AC 8648 The good is not perceived. AC 8701 He receives both mediate and immediate influx. AC 8690.2, 8685, 8701; cf. 4015, 7004, 7756, HH 26 He receives good conjoined with truth. AC 8648 The good is perceived. AC 8701
ExternalInternal
During reformation a person looks from what is external to what is internal. AC 7932e, 8743, 8988, 8979.2 He looks from the natural to the spiritual. TCR 571, AE 114.4 He is outside heaven. AC 8539.2. Stands at the door. AC 9832 The world is within everything with him. AC 9227 He looks from the world to heaven. AC 9274, 10057.4 He ascends from earth to heaven. AC 3701.2. 3882 When regenerated, the person looks from what is internal to what is external.AC 7923e., 8979.2 The spiritual flows into the natural. TCR 57 1, AC 4269.2, 10057.4 He comes into heaven. AC 8539.2, 9832, 9274, 9227, AE 1168.3 There is heaven in everything with him. AC 9227 He looks from heaven into the world. AC 9274, 10057.4 He descends from heaven to the world. 3701.2. 3882
At first the understanding is inside the will outside. AC 3563 He looks downward or backward. AC 8505, AE 1168.3 Later the will is inside, the understanding outside. AC 3563 He looks upward or forward. AC 8505, AE 1168.3
Inverted OrderGenuine Order
The first state is contrary to order, entirely inverted. AC 3539, 3669.2. 3563, 4269.2, 4274.2, 7992. AE 1168.3 The second state is according to order. in genuine order. AC 3563. 7992. 8510. AE 1168.3
Not in the order of heaven. AC 8510 The order of heaven. AC 8510.
At first the good of truth and the truth of good are inverse to each other, but still they are conjoined inmostly, that is, as to ends. Afterwards the good of truth and truth of good are conjoined. AC 3679.7. 3688.2.

When Faith Is First

False Doctrine and Evil Life—Faith Alone at Its Worst

There are three degrees of the reception of that doctrine (of faith alone)…. The first degree is to acknowledge that doctrine; the second degree is to confirm it in one’s self; and the third degree is to live according to it. AR 634

The ‘lukewarm’…say in heart, “What does it matter if I think, will, and do good. since this does not save? It is enough to have faith.” Again, “What does it matter if I think and will evil, since this does not damn?”…But it should be known that there are very few who thus live according the doctrine although it is believed by the preachers that all do so who listen to their preachings. AE 233.4

Those who confirm by doctrine and life that faith alone without works saves, falsify the Word and close heaven to themselves. The reasons:

  • They make good works of no value.
  • They make faith alone saving, not charity.
  • They excuse evil works.
  • They claim the Lord’s merit.
  • They acknowledge historical, natural, dead non faith as saving, spiritual. living faith.
  • They pray for faith and omit doing good.
  • They use the Word to confirm all these things.
    (Summary of AE 797. Obviously, more references could be given here.)

Empty facts are those which regard for their end and confirm the loves of self and the world, and which withdraw from love to the Lord and love towards the neighbor because such facts shut up the internal person so that he is not then capable of receiving anything from heaven (n. 1563, 1600). HD 51

False Doctrine and Good Life

How a Person Lives Matters More Than What He Believes

Falsity is of a two-fold origin, namely, falsity of doctrine, and falsity of evil; the falsity of doctrine does not consume goods, for a person can be in the falsity of doctrine, and yet in good hence it is that some are saved from every doctrine. AC 5149.2

The reason why the former were in hell, was that they had indeed been in truths as to doctrine, but in evils as to life and the reason the latter were in heaven was that they had not indeed been in truths as to doctrine but still they had been in good as to life. AC 9192.3; cf. AC 3436.2

There are people saved from every religion provided that through the life of charity they have received the remains of good and of apparent truth. AC 2284.4

There are few genuine truths even with the person who is within the church and still fewer with the person who is outside the church; hence the affections of genuine truth are rare; but still they who are in the good of life, or who live in love to God and in charity towards the neighbor, are saved. AC 3986

Faith Alone Is Not Harmful With Those In Good

Those who from doctrine set faith before charity, and still live the life of charity, are of the Lord’s spiritual church, and are saved; for they place charity first in life, but truth of faith first in doctrine. AC 6256e

As it is here said that those also who are in the truth of faith are saved, provided they recede from evil, be it known that these are they who profess faith and think nothing about charity for the reason that they have been so instructed, and do not know what charity is…yet they are in a life of charity towards the neighbor, because in the life of good. It does these persons no harm to profess faith along with all the rest, for in their faith there is charity since this means all the good of life, in general and in particular. AC 2388.3

Very different is the case with those who have said that faith alone saves, but still have lived a life of charity; for in their faith has been charity from the Lord. AC 1077

But in that church there are dragons who separate faith from good works not only in doctrine but also in life: but the others in the same church who live the life of faith, which is charity, are not dragons, although they are among them…. (They believe that faith produces fruits, and that faith is believing the Word and doing it.)…It is by these that the New Church…is helped and also grows. AE 764.2

There are many especially the more simple minded, who believe from the doctrine (of faith alone), but who do not at the same time live according to the doctrine; and these are saved. AE 885.4

But the greater part of those who are born within the churches where the doctrine of faith alone is received, do not know what faith alone is…. All who are saved are kept in this state. AE 233.3

With those who are in doctrinal things concerning faith alone, yet are in some good of life, there are also two states—when they are in doctrinal things they are in their own light…whereas when they are by themselves, and are thinking within themselves, as they are in some obscure good of life, their ideas are also in obscurity…for they are then thinking outside of what is doctrinal that the good of life saves the person. This took place with Luther. SE 5918

Those who confirm by doctrine and life that faith produces the goods of life as a tree does fruit falsify the Word a little, and do not close heaven to themselves. Their quality: They invert the Divine order, which is that charity produces faith, but this order can be restored with them when they reach the lowest parts of heaven. They do not enter interiorly because their faith…is from falsities more than from truths; and in the lowest parts of heaven are those who are in falsities from doctrine and religion and yet are in the good of life…. From AE 798.6

…those who…have believed that faith alone saves, but have nevertheless shunned evils as sins. F 72. AE 778.5

It Is Better to Be in Charity Alone Than in Faith Alone

‘Would thou were cold or hot’ means it would be better that there were no faith, or that there should be charity alone…Regarded in itself charity is spiritual affection but charity alone is natural affection and not spiritual; for charity itself, which is spiritual affection is formed through truths from the Word, and in proportion as it is formed through them it is spiritual; but charity alone, which is natural affection, is not formed through any truths from the Word, but it comes forth with the person from the hearing of preaching without his attending to truths…thus charity alone is devoid of faith. AE 232

Charity exists without faith as with little children and gentiles…but faith without charity has no existence. (Examples given.) SE 4626

Good Bends Falsity towards Truth

All truth is adulterated by evil of life and of love; and therefore it is opened and restored through good of love and of life. AE 618.5

It is a canon that with those who are in evil of life truths are falsified, and with those who are in the good of life falsities are made true. The reason why with these falsities are made true, is that they are applied so as to agree with good, and in this way the crudities of the falsity are wiped away. AC 8149

Falsities are made true by good and grow soft when they are applied and turned to good, and evil is removed…. Falsities of religion with those who are in good are received by the Lord as truths. HD 2 1. See also AC 8051, 4736.

This falsity becomes mild with those who are in the good of life for they apply it to good. saying that faith alone saves, but that it is not faith unless it is attended by its fruit. AC 8311

The life of charity is attended with this; that the falsity and evil of ignorance can be easily bent to truth and good.. AC 2280.6

They who are in some doctrine, although it is not so very true, and yet are in the good of life, are in heaven; for the falsity of doctrine is not falsity when there is good in it all in heaven differ as to truths. SE 5451

What a person has believed does not injure him in the other life, provided he has held charily rightly according to its essentials; for such have had the life of good, and inwardly they have had truth. agreeing with good. SE 4654

If anyone recognizes as a doctrine that charity is from faith, and yet lives in charity towards the neighbor, he is indeed not in the truth as to doctrine, but still is in the truth as to life. AC 3451.3

True Doctrine and Evil Life—Another Version of Faith Alone

There are many who make charity the essential means of salvation as others do faith, and yet do not live the life of charity; but since their charity is merely a confession of the mouth that this is the truth, it is their faith alone; therefore their charity likewise is not living but dead, and in consequence they differ very little from the confessors of faith alone having a like heart but an unlike soul, but yet the one like the other closes heaven to himself. AE 798b:9

Many have said that charity is the essential of the church and not faith believing that thus they would be saved in preference to others; but they who have said so from a mere principle, and not from life, differ not a whit from those who are in faith alone. SE 5881. See also 3428, 5948.4, 5961, AE 107.2. 458.2. 798e

It is better not to know and comprehend the truths of faith, than to know and comprehend them and still live a life of evil. AC 3863.10

Those in truths without good cannot be regenerated. HD 22. AC 10367

Truth without good is carried here and there, because there is nothing to lead it. AE 817.3

Most Faith Alone Preachers Preach Charity and Good Works

A certain person who had been a leading author on the doctrine of faith alone. boldly came up and said, “When I was in the world I did not falsify the Word; I also exalted charity together with faith; and I taught that a person, in the state of faith in which he does charity and its works, is renewed;…and also that faith does not then exist in a solitary state, that is without good works; as a tree is not without fruit…and I blamed those who said that good works are not necessary. And, moreover, I emphasized the precepts of the Decalogue, and also repentance….” But…that leader had exalted the goods of charity as proceeding from faith. AR 566.7; cf. AR 386

(The clergy) speak to (the laity) from the Word about love, charity, good works, the precepts of the Decalogue, repentance; and they quote from the Word almost everything there is therein on these subjects. But…they understand inwardly in themselves that all those things are to be done not for the sake of God, heaven, and salvation, but only for the public and the private good. AR 463.2. TCR 462

Those who are in faith separated…do not strenuously insist on it before everyone, and scarcely at all before those who are in simple good. AC 4754

Why Faith Alone Preachers Preach Charity

Faith alone has been acknowledged as the essential in churches; but the reason why it has not been acknowledged everywhere in a similar manner, is that the leaders could gain nothing by faith alone, but only by the preaching of works. AC 4730

Because by Preaching Good Works They Gain Acceptance from the Simple

The exterior things (of the doctrine of faith alone) are precious sayings about charity, good works, acts of repentance. the exercises of the law; but these are accounted by them merely as slaves and drudges which follow their mistress faith, without being permitted to come near her. But as they know that the laity regards these things as saving together with faith, they diligently subjoin them to their sermons and conversation and pretend to conjoin and insert them into justification, merely to tickle the ears of the common people, and prevent their oracular sayings from appearing like riddles. BE 79, TCR 518; cf. TCR I 10.7

(Certain faith alone preachers had laymen who conjoined faith and charity. The preachers were accused of preaching falsity.) The flock of sheep consisted of those who had believed that charity and faith are one…. they said, “You speak falsely against them! Do they not preach charity and its works, which they call the works of faith?” He replied, “You do not understand their preaching. Only a clergyman attends to and understands it. They think only of moral charity.” AR 417, TCR 506

Because the Fruits of Charity Appear to Be the Fruits of Faith

To a human being the goods of life appear to be the fruits of faith, but they are the fruits of charity. AC 3207e

So it appears at the beginning of regeneration. AC 3995

They call…the things of love…the fruits of faith: (but) the things of faith are only the leaves. AC 3427.3; cf. AC 4683

Because They Cannot Openly Contradict the Word

Many in those churches teach faith conjoined to life, and life conjoined to faith but others teach faith separated from the life. This latter is done by the learned who teach from doctrine, but the former by the learned and unlearned who teach from the Word. Thus they go in opposite ways; and yet this is permitted by the defenders of the doctrine for the reason that the Word plainly teaches life and a faith according to life and the simple minded cannot be taught otherwise than according to the obvious sense of the Word. And some permit it because they cannot openly resist the truth. AE 885.2

But deeds, and works, also doing and loving are mentioned in the Word in a thousand passages and as these disagree with that religious principle, therefore its dogmatists have devised means of conjoining them. with faith. AE 785

Because the Lord Has So Provided for the Sake of the Simple

Although a religion of faith alone has been adopted, goods of charity, which are good works. are nevertheless everywhere taught; and this is of the Lord’s Divine providence, that the common people may not be led astray by it. DP 258.6

False Conjunctions of Faith with Charity

Something will be said about the conjunctions of good works with faith that are devised (by those who think themselves wiser than others), by means of which the disagreement with the Word is apparently cleared away. some of which are believed by the simple, and some devised by the learned.

  1. The very simple know no otherwise than that faith alone consists in believing those things that are in the Word.
  2. The less simple do not know what faith alone is; they merely know that faith is to believe what must be done; and few of them make any distinction between believing and doing.
  3. Others. however, suppose that faith produces good works, but do not consider how it produces them.
  4. Others think that faith must always precede, and the goods are brought forth from it, or spring from it as fruit does from a tree.
  5. Some believe that this is done by a person’s cooperation, others that it is done without his cooperation.
  6. But as the doctrine declares that faith alone without good works is what saves, therefore some make no account of good works, saying in their heart that every thing they do is good in God’s sight, and that evils are not seen by God.
  7. But as deeds and works…are so frequently mentioned in the Word…. they devise various modes of conjunctions that are not consistent, and yet are such that faith is kept by itself. and works by themselves, to the end that salvation may be in faith, and nothing of it in works.
  8. Some conjoin faith with the endeavor to do good with those who have attained to the last stage of justification, yet with an endeavor that derives nothing from the voluntary part of a person, but only from influx or inspiration, since the good that is from the voluntary part of a person is in itself not good.
  9. Some conjoin faith with the Lord’s merit, saying that this works all things pertaining to a person’s life, while the person does not know it.
  10. Some conjoin faith with moral good and with civil good, which are goods that are to be done for the sake of life in the world, not for the sake of eternal life;…and that for the sake of the uses there good works must be taught and preached before the laity, because they have no knowledge of the arcana respecting the conjunction of faith and works. and some cannot comprehend them.
  11. Many of the learned suppose that in faith alone all are conjoined. that is, that love to God, charity…the good of life, works, the Lord’s merit, and God, are all included in faith alone, except that a person thinks, wills, and does something from himself respecting these.
  12. It is to be known that many other methods of conjunction have been devised by the same persons in the spiritual world…. I have seen a certain person in the spiritual world who had thought out hundreds of modes of conjunction…. The more interiorly he thought upon the subject the more he separated faith from good works instead of conjoining them. AE 786; see also 787

These Reasonings Do Not Bring About a Real Conjunction

The leading reformers, although they separated faith and charity, still adjoined and even conjoined them; but would not admit of their being united into one, so as to be both together saving. BE 25

If it is said that still they have conjoined faith with good works, we reply, this conjunction when closely inspected, is not conjunction, but mere adjunction. BE 46, 47

From their learning about both faith and good works, they in a wonderful manner sometimes separate them, and sometimes con Join them (examples given). BE 59

When faith separate establishes (its falsity) and also confirms it in life, no matter how it may speak of the fruits of faith where then is the church? AC 4766

In all Christian churches the doctrine has been accepted that before a person approaches the holy communion (he should shun evils as sins.) This is read by the priest with a loud voice before those who are about to come to the Holy Supper, and is listened to by them with full acknowledgment that it is so. And yet when these same persons listen on the same day to the preaching of faith alone,…they return home entirely forgetful of their former confession discarding it so far as they give thought to the preaching about faith alone. DP 114.2

Hence it is evident that at this day it is doctrine which makes the church and not life; and that the fruits which they adjoin to faith, exist only in doctrine, and not at all in their minds. AC 4689e

They who place the essential of salvation in faith do not attend to those things which the Lord so of ten spoke about love and charity; and those who do attend to them call them the fruits of faith, which they thus distinguish, nay, separate from charity. AC 3416

The faith of the present church cannot be conjoined with charity. BE 47, 50, 68

The former church adjoins charity to faith as an appendix, but not as saving and thus makes religion; but the New Church conjoins faith in the Lord and charity towards the neighbor as two inseparable things, and thus makes religion. TCR 647e

Putting Faith First Can Draw One Backwards and Downwards

It Draws a Person from Good to Evil

If in the church anything is called truth which leads away from good, it is not worthy of mention, for it is not truth. AC 6822.2

If one who lives a life of good…allows himself to be persuaded…that he can be saved by faith without a life of good…and is afterwards careless about the life…he is said to be ‘torn.’ AC 4171

‘He-goats’ mean those who are in separated faith, that is, those who set doctrine before life; and at last do not care for life. AC 4769

These are they who make faith the essential. and do not indeed reject charity, but undervalue it; thus they set doctrine before life. AC 3447

Every church in its beginning regards the good of life in the first place, and the truths of doctrine in the second; but as the church declines, it begins to regard the truths of doctrine in the first place, and the goods of life in the second and at length in the end it regards faith alone, and then it not only separates the goods of charity from faith, but also omits them. AR 82

‘He who is on the housetop, let him not come down,’…means that he who is in good should not take himself from there to the things which are of the doctrinal things of faith…So ‘he who puts his hand to the plough’ means him who is in good; ‘and looks back’ means who then looks to the doctrinal things of faith, and thus leaves good behind. AC 5895.5

Charity is extinguished with those who have separated faith and set it above charity. AC 329

At first while it is still a little maid and a virgin, every church of the Lord has no other doctrine, and loves no other than that of charity; for this belongs to life. But gradually the church turns itself away from this doctrine, until it begins to hold it cheap, and at length to reject it and then it acknowledges no other doctrine than that which is called the doctrine of faith; and when it separates faith from charity, this doctrine conspires with a life of evil. (Examples given.) AC 2417

While be is being regenerated he learns truths for the sake of good,…but after he has been regenerated he acts from truth and good. After the person has arrived at this state he ought not to betake himself to his former state, for if he should do this he would reason from truth concerning the good in which he is, and would thereby pervert his state for all reasoning ceases, and ought to cease. when a person is in a state to will what is true and good; for he then thinks and acts from the will, consequently from conscience, and not as before from the understanding; and if he should again think and act from this, he would fall into temptations in which he would succumb. AC 3652

A person cannot be at the same time in both states. He who is in the first state cannot enter into the other until he has been regenerated; and he who is in the second state must not betake himself to the former. If anyone so betakes himself, he loses the affection of doing what is good from love, and relapses into the state of faith. which had been of service to him to introduce him to good, and he also relapses beyond this state. AC 7857

When a person is in the latter state, that is. when he acts from affection, he no longer allowed to look back, and to do good from truth for at that time the Lord flows into the good with him, and leads him by means of the good. If at that time he were to look back, or were to do good from truth, he would act from his own; for he who acts from truth leads himself, whereas he who acts from good is led by the Lord. AC 8505

When a person is in a state of peace, he is then also led of the Lord by means of good; if a person were then to lead himself, even by means of truth, he would dissipate the state of peace, and so there would be no conjunction. AC 8517

He who is in a state of good…shall not return into a state of truth. AC 10184.4; cf. AC 3653, 4255.3. 5897.9. 7923, 9207.6. 9274.3. HD 186, Matt 24.17, Mark 13.16, Luke 17.31. Cp. CL 444.6

Putting Faith First Also Leads to the Destruction of the Truth

The church which turns aside from charity to faith…when it first commences preaches charity, but only from doctrine…not from charity itself…in course of time, as charity and affection are obliterated in the heart. they preach faith; and at last, when there is no longer any charity, faith alone. AC 4683

He should not turn himself away from good to the truth which is of doctrine…. Truth is said to turn itself away from good, and to look to doctrinal things, when the person of the church no longer has at heart what kind of life he lives, but what kind of a doctrine he possesses…for when doctrine is separated from life, then because good which is of the life is laid waste, truth which is of doctrine is also laid waste. AC 2454.4,5

The church is such that when charity recedes, and the love of self succeeds in its place, the doctrine of faith is of no account, except in so far as it can be turned into the worship of self. AC 1304; cf. AC 3488.6

Divine truth is said to be rejected to lower things when faith is set before charity, or when it becomes in hearts the antecedent, and when charity is set after faith, and it becomes in hearts the consequent. AC 4673

In the ancient church, those were called Philistines who studied life little, but doctrine much…consequently. who made nothing of the doctrinal things of charity, which in the ancient church were the whole of doctrine. and thus obliterated them, whereas they cried up the doctrinal things of faith in their stead. and in these placed the whole of religion…AC 3412.2

The doctrine was falsified in the most ancient time when they made confession of faith, and thus separated faith from love. (Cain). AC 337; compare 340, 442, 468

When the church does not allow itself to be planted…it recedes gradually from charity, and turns away to faith. The church then no longer studies life, but doctrine; and when this takes place, it casts itself into shades and falls into falsities and evils (meant by Cain, Reuben, Ham and Pharaoh). AC 3325

They who gave the preference to faith and made it the first born, have all fallen into heresies and falsities and have at last entirely extinguished charity (meant by Cain, Reuben.) The reason for this controversy was that they did not know as they now do not know. that a person has faith in proportion as he has charity;…and therefore that charity is the very firstborn of the church., although it appears otherwise to the person. AC 2435

It is otherwise when doctrinal things are regarded as of the greatest importance; then indeed, truths can be known, but not interiorly seen, and loved from spiritual affection. Every church at its beginning regards the good of life as in the first place and the truths of doctrine as in the second; but as the church declines, it begins to regard the truths of doctrine as in the first place, and goods of life as in the second. AR 82

Truths are extinguished by the doctrine of faith separated from the doctrine of love and charity, whereas they are restored by means of the doctrine of love and charity. AC 9468.3

As soon as an angel of the third heaven looks down into a society of second heaven and talks with anyone there, his third degree is at once closed; and as his wisdom resides in that degree, if that is closed he is deprived of his wisdom for he has none in the second or first degree. HH 208

All who are in heaven are so led. for this is according to Divine order; and thus all things which they think and act flow as it were spontaneously and from freedom. It would be quite different if they were to think from truth and to act from it; for then they would think whether a thing ought to be so done, or not, and they would thus come to a standstill in every detail, and thereby would obscure the light they have and finally they would act according to those things which they themselves love. AC 8516

It Is Actually Not the Doctrine of Faith Alone, But the Evil Motivation behind It Which Causes This

As the human race began to will what is evil, to hate the neighbor, and to exercise revenges and cruelties, so much that that part of the mind which is called the will was altogether destroyed, people began to distinguish between charity and faith, and to refer to faith all the doctrinal things which belonged to their religion, and call them by the single term faith; and at length they went so far as to say that they could be saved by faith alone. AC 2231.3

Evil from what is hereditary and from what is actual adheres to a person in each of his thoughts…. This drags him downward…. If even for the least moment the person were not withheld from evils, he would of himself rush downward; and this he would do more in the state in which…he is beginning to think and to act not so much from good as from truth. AC 24 10

At this day charity has so completely vanished that scarcely anyone knows what it is. consequently so also has faith for the one cannot exist without the other. AC 6269.2; cf. AC 3652, LJ 33

They said that they had not known what charity…is; but the answer was given them, that they could not know these things because the love of self and of the world, and external things, had occupied all things of their thought and will. AC 4952e

In proportion as a person in is the loves of self and the world, he does not know what charity is, and at last does not know that it exists. AC 7490

When there is hatred instead of charity the thick darkness is so great that the person is entirely unaware what evil is . AC 1860

Where there is no charity there is the love of self. AC 1079.2

He who is in the life of cupidities cannot be in the life of love and charity, for they are complete opposites;…thus they extinguish charity with themselves, and they who extinguish charity also extinguish love to the Lord. AC 4776

The Conjunction of Good and Truth

Good and Truth Go Together

They Cannot Be Separated

Separating charity from faith is like separating essence from form. TCR 367.2.3; cf. TCR 498, 20, AC 2429.2, 4301, 7749, 4574, DLW 40 46, CL 66, 87, F 18, 19

Good without truth is not anything, also truth without good is not anything. DP 11, F 18, 19

If the will and the understanding are separated the understanding comes to nothing, and presently the will also. TCR 367.2

There can be no love except in wisdom, nor any wisdom except from love. DLW 14

There is no solitary good. and no solitary truth, but they are everywhere conjoined. CL 87

Love and faith admit of no separation, because they constitute one and the same thing. AC 34

There is a kind of marriage, perpetual and indissoluble between thought and will. AC 590

It is an immovable truth that faith and charity cannot be separated. TCR 393

A person has not the least of thought, nor the least of affection and action, in which there is not a kind of marriage of the understanding and the will. AC 718; cf. 747

They Work Together in A Person’s Regeneration

Love without wisdom cannot do anything, nor can wisdom do anything without love. DP 3

The will brings forth nothing from itself apart from the understanding, nor does the understanding bring forth anything from itself apart from the will. F 15

Charity through faith operates good, and not charity by itself. nor faith by itself. AR 5e

A person’s regeneration is indeed effected by means of the truths of faith, yet at the same time by means of the life of charity, which the Lord insinuates according to the increments of the truth of faith. AC 1950

Each keeps pace with the other where there is not faith there is not charity, and where there is not charity there is not faith: but charity is that which receives faith, and no charity is what rejects faith; this is the origin of all falsity and of all evil. AC 3488.6

Concerning the manifestation of charity and faith with a person it may be said that they both come forth at the same moment for although charity produces faith, still as they are one, the one can never be separated from the other. so far as comes to a person’s perception either as to degree or as to quality. AE 795

The equal reception of love and wisdom is the angelic itself. DLW 102.2

(The will and understanding) make one person belonging to the church when the doctrine of life and the life of doctrine are conjoined together in him; for the doctrine teaches how we are to live and act, and life lives and does it. AE 725

Unless the will and understanding are in concord, so as to make one, the person is not regenerated. AC 2975e

Divine Providence Keeps Them Together

Good is not good with a person until it is conjoined with truth…The Divine Providence is especially busied about this conjunction. AC 3951

It is of the Divine Providence that every created thing in whole and in part, should be such a one, and if it is not, that it should be made so. DP 2. 7

The Lord does not suffer any thing to be divided…. The Divine Providence of the Lord especially has for its end that a person should be in good and at the same time in truth and it works for this; for thus a person is his own good and his own love, and also his own truth and his own wisdom; for by this person is human, being then the Lord’s image. DP 16

When Good And Truth Are Not Conjoined, They Are Apparent Good And Apparent Truth

The good of love is not good any further than it is united to the truth of wisdom; and the truth of wisdom is not truth any further than it is united to the good of love. DP 10

The good of love not united to the truth of wisdom is not good in itself, but is apparent good; and the truth of wisdom not united to the good of love is not truth in itself, but is apparent truth. DP 14

Good may be separated from truth, and truth from good, and when separated, still appear as good and truth, because a person…can seem in externals different from what he is in internals. DP 15

Charity without faith is not genuine charity and faith without charity is not faith; in order that charity may exist there must be faith, and in order that faith may exist there must be charity; but the very essential itself is charity…. Charity without faith, such as exists with little children and the good Gentiles, is only ground, in which faith is implanted, if not in the bodily life, still in the other life. AC 2839

The wisdom that does not make one with its love appears to be wisdom, but it is not; and the love that does not make one with its wisdom appears to be the love of wisdom, but it is not; for the one must derive its essence and its life reciprocally from the other. DLW 39

Love is indeed possible without wisdom, but such love is belongs to the person, not to the Lord. Wisdom alone is possible without love; but such wisdom although from the Lord, has not the Lord in it. DLW 139

Truth without good is not truth in spirit and good without truth is not good in spirit and thus the one makes the other. AR 386, TCR 460

How Good and Truth are Conjoined

Good and Truth Are Conjoined by a Life According to Truth

He who believes that a person can be given the good of love. without the truths of faith, and without a life in accordance with these, is very much mistaken. AC 10266e

Truths are for the first time appropriated to a person when he begins to love them for the sake of life, and still more when he applies them to life. When this is done, then the truths are raised up out of the natural memory into the rational, and are there conjoined with good. AC 3161

The conjunction of good and truth with a person is effected when truth enters the will. AC 8981

Neither can truth be conjoined with the good that flows in through the internal person…until the truth is truth in will and act that is, the good of truth. AC 4337. See also 4353, 4385, 10252.2

Good and Truth Are Conjoined through Combat

Temptations take place to the end…that truths may be more closely con joined with goods. AC 2722, 3601, 4341, 8367.2, 8557e, 8559

Good cannot be conjoined with truth in the natural person without combats. AC 3318, 332 1

The conjunction of good and truth is provided by means of equilibrium, relation. and purification. DP 21-26

All the conjunction of good with truth is effected through temptations…. the good itself which is to be con joined with truth is not tempted, but the truth. AC 4341.2

Truths…cannot…be conjoined with good so long as the evils of the love or self and of the world remain in the natural person. AC 5270

If the will is of evil, good and truths disjoin, not conjoin; but if there is any will of good. they do not disjoin, but conjoin. AC 3542

By (temptations) charity becomes the charity of faith, and faith the faith of charity. AC 8149.4

After the combats of temptations, apparent goods become genuine goods. AC 1708

The conjunction itself causes comfort, because the conjunction is the end of temptations. AC 4572

Good and Truth Are Conjoined When Good Comes First

Truth makes one with good when it proceeds from good even so that both together are one good. (4301. 4337, 7835, 10252, 10266) HD 24

(The understanding and will) make one when the understanding is of the will, or what is the same, when truth is of good. AC 3623, HD 24

The second state is that the good of life is in the first place and the truth of doctrine in the second, for then…the will has been conjoined with the understanding as in a marriage. AC 3539

Charity should not only be not separated from faith, but also constitute the principal of faith. AC 393

Charity could have been adjoined to faith, yet so that charity should have had the dominion, not faith. AC 363; cf. 365

Charity wants to be with faith, if faith does not become the chief thing, and be raised above charity. AC 328, 361

The understanding and the will conjoin themselves together with those who are in good and thence in truth. AC 7179

In the state after regeneration the good which is of the will is within, and the truth which is of the understanding is without; yet

still in such a manner that truth acts as a one with good, because from good. AC 3563

In order that truths may be conjoined, good must reign universally. AC 5440

The angels are in a state of peace when they are in a state of love for then good is conjoined with truth with them. HH 289

Truth is initiated and conjoined with good, when a person loves the Lord and his neighbor AC 3175.2

When Good and Truth Are Conjoined Truth Disappears

Truth Becomes Good

Truths become good when a person wills them and from willing does them. AC 10367.4; cf. AC 2336,4984,7835,8725

When there exists faith in the will, truths become goods for as soon as the truth of faith which is of doctrine enters the will, it becomes the truth of life. and becomes truth in act, and is then called good, and also becomes spiritual good. AC 5526

When truth becomes of the life, it is no longer called truth, but good. AC 5595

Faith becomes charity when that which a person thinks justly and rightly he also wills and does: and when this takes place, they are not two, but one. HH 364.2

The truths which are made fruitful by good do not remain truths but are committed to life, and then become uses. AC 5527

When the truth of faith passes into the will it becomes the good of faith; for the truth then passes into the person’s life, and is then regarded not as something to be known, but as something to be done consequently it changes its essence, and becomes actual. AC 5626

When truths have been conjoined with good. they are no longer of knowledge, but of life; for the person then no longer learns from truths how to live, but he lives from them. AC 3161.2

Good Shines through Truth

The more genuine the truths are, and the more they are multiplied, the more abundantly can good accept them as vessels, reduce them to order, and at last manifest itself: so that at last the truths do not appear, except in so far as good shines through them. In this way, truth becomes the celestial spiritual. AC 2063.3

The gold like unto clear glass of which the city and its streets were made means the good of love from which doctrine with its truths is transparent. HD 1.2

Truths then become of good, thus transparent from good. AC 2336

Truth Vanishes from the Memory and Is Implanted in the Life

The things which thoroughly enter into the loves, and become spontaneous and as it were natural, vanish from the external memory but remain inscribed on the internal memory. AC 9394.5; cf. AC 3108, HD 27

When truth is conjoined with good, it vanishes from the memory. HD 27.5

They almost vanish out of the external or natural memory, and appear as it were innate, because they are then implanted in the person’s life, like all those things which through daily use have become as it were of his nature. AC 9918

The truth in the natural is factual knowledge, and good there is the delight of this, both of which are perceptible to a person while he is in the world, for when they are thought of they are seen But the truth in the internal a person is not factual knowledge that is seen but is truth implanted in its intellectual part; and the good there is not perceptible, because it is implanted in the will part. AC 10029

Those Who Are in Good Do Not Care about Truth

Spiritual good is more than doctrine, doctrine being from this good; and therefore he who has arrived at spiritual good has no more need of doctrinal things which are from others; for he is in the end to which he was tending, and is no longer in the means to it; and doctrinal things are nothing but the means of arriving at good as the end. AC 5997

Those who act from charity are regenerate, and they then care nothing for the things of faith or of truth because they live from the good of faith and no longer from the truth of it; for truth has so conjoined itself with good. that it no longer appears, except only as the form of good. that is faith no longer appears except only as the form of charity. AC 3122

The last state is a state of wisdom and of innocence in wisdom, which is when the person is no longer concerned about understanding truths and goods, but about willing and living them; for this is to be wise. AC 10225.6

He does not care for truths from any other source than those which he himself can see from his own good. AC 8772.2

He studies life more than doctrine. AC 4928

Matters of knowledge and doctrinal things are nothing unless a person so does…. I spoke with the spirits and angels, but whenever I advanced anything doctrinal or that was a matter of knowledge they did not want to admit Lit, saying that there is no need of such things; they disturb the quiet, because they are in them…. Hence…I was taught that they who are in heaven do not admit doctrinal things, except for use; and that doctrinal things are merely that a person may become such, being of service to people on earth, and to souls who newly arrived from the world. SD 4294

The Celestial

Celestial angels do not know what faith is, thus neither what its truth is. AC 7877

For the celestial never thought about the things of faith or truth but about those which are of love or good. AC 3122.2

Celestial angels do not mention faith or know what it is. (AC 202, 203, 337, 2715, 3246, 4448, 9166, 10786) HD 121

When (those of the celestial kingdom) do the precepts from love, they at the same time act from truths, without thought about them from what is doctrinal. AC 10295.2

The reason the celestial angels appear naked, is that they have no need of the memory to retain truths, nor of the derivative understanding to comprehend them. AE 240.2

The reason why angels of the third heaven appear simple is that they cannot speak about the things of heaven and the church for with them these things are not in the memory, from which is all speech. but in the life. AE 828.3

When Good Is First, Truth Is Multiplied

Truths increase immensely when they proceed from good (n. 2846, 2847, 5345, 5355) HD 24

These things increase when charity is in the first place and faith in the second…. Hence it is that those who are in genuine charity receive constant increases of truth. AR 130

(Goods and truths in external person receive increase only as an effect of charity.)…Such as the affection is. such is the multiplication. AC 10 17.2

The truths of the Word are also multiplied from the love or. them and as they are set in order by love, they shine through and appear more and more clearly through their garments; but this too is effected by means of doctrine. AC 55

Truth in the interiors is never multiplied from any other source than good. AC 5345

What the multiplication of truth from good is: When a person is in good, that is, in love towards the neighbor. he is also in the love of truth…for good is in truth as the soul is its body. As therefore, good multiplies truth so it propagates itself; and if it is the good of genuine charity, it propagates itself in truth and by truth indefinitely; for there is no limit to good or truth…In the church at this day there is rarely any multiplication of truth, because there is no good of genuine charity. It is believed to be sufficient to know the dogmas…and to confirm them…But one who is in the good of genuine charity, and hence in the affection for truth is not content with this; but wants to be enlightened from the Word as to what truth is, and to see the truth before he confirms it. He sees it, too, from good, because the perception of truth is from good; for the Lord is in good, and gives the perception. When a person receives truth in this way, it increases indefinitely. AC 5355

Good Loves Truth

Good loves truth. F 13. Use loves means. F 14

Good longs for truth and receives it willingly. AC 8313.4. 8772

Good loves truth as food loves drink, for it wants to be nourished, and it is nourished by truths. AE 130, AC 5804

Angels have an immense desire of knowing and of becoming wise, inasmuch as science, intelligence, and wisdom are spiritual food. (Many refs.) HD 51

He who would have perception in spiritual things, must be in the affection of truth from good, and must continually long to know truths. AC 5937.3

Those are enlightened from the Word who are in heavenly loves; for these loves receive, and as it were absorb like sponges the truths of heaven. AC 9382.2 HH 479.5

The case is different with those who…have lived in charity; they…easily acknowledge…for the life of charity is attended with this; charity itself loves all truth. AC 2027

He also acts from charity when he lives according to the truths of faith, and loves doctrine for the sake of life. AC 4269.2

They who are not in charity do not love truth in light but they can love truth in shade. Char 113

Everyone, from the love in which he is, sees the things which are of that love and what he sees he calls truths. AC 3798.2

In proportion as anyone shuns evils as sins, in the same proportion he loves truths. Life 32

The person who is averse to evils as sins wants to know truths because truths teach uses, and the quality of their good. This is why good loves truth, and truth loves good, and why they want to be conjoined. AE 975.2

Love or the will can be elevated…if it loves its consort wisdom. DLW 414

Truth Is Delightful to a Person in Good

That a person is affected with truth is from good; for good and truth are conjoined as in a marriage and consequently the one loves the other…Experience also shows that those who are in the good of life–that is, who love God and the neighbor–love the truths of faith, and hence it is that so long as good is flowing in and being received, so long truth appears delightful. AC 8356

In proportion as anyone loves truth, in the same proportion he wants to know it, and is affected at heart when he finds it. Life 89

No one is ever instructed through truths, but through affections of truth. AC 3066.2

All conjunctions are effected through affection…The greater the affection, the stronger the conjunction. AC 4018; cf. AC 2875, 3024, 3095. 3316.2. 3915, 4928, 5365.2. 9182, 9206.2

When a person is regenerated, truths enter with the delight of affection, because he loves to do them, and they are reproduced with the same affection because the two cohere (refs.) HD 23

Whereas they who are in the genuine affection of truth, that is, they who long to know truths for the sake of good use and for the sake of life do indeed remain in the doctrinal things of the church until they arrive at the age when they begin to think for themselves. and then search the Scriptures. and supplicate the Lord for enlightenment; and when they are enlightened they rejoice from their hearts.. AC 8993.3

The affection of love is here said of the doctrine of good and truth…because the angels are unwilling to speak of persons…Therefore they attribute to doctrine what is pleasant and delightful, also affection…and these things really are in doctrine when a person applies it to himself. AC 7002

They who are being regenerated, think much about doctrine and life…and therefore if truth is lacking…they grieve at heart. AC 2682

This temptation consists in their complaining and suffering because the truths which had previously been delightful to them…now appear undelightful to them so much so that they can scarcely endure them. The merely natural person would believe that such a thing could not cause any suffering…But the spiritual person thinks very differently: it is the delight of his life to be instructed in truths. AC 8352

Truths appear undelightful when the communication with good is intercepted. HD 27

They who are in the affection of truth from the good of genuine charity, if they hear that charity makes the church, but not faith separated from it, receive this truth with joy, but they who are in the affections of truth from the love of self and of the world do not receive it. AC 4368.4

The truth of doctrine which is interiorly collected from the sense of the letter of the Word, and is called its literal sense, becomes undelightful to those who are in the falsities of evil. AE 6 18.2

Truth Loves Good in Return

In every created thing there is a conjunction of good and truth, and conjunction has no existence unless it is reciprocal for conjunction on one side, and not in turn on the other, is dissolved of itself. CL 61; cf. CL 159.

Good loves truth and truth loves good and they want to be conjoined together. AE 790.8, HD 15, Life 33

Good is in the perpetual endeavor and desire of conjoining truths to itself…. And truths in like manner with good. HD 23

The truths which are conjoined with good have always in them a longing to do good, and of thereby at the same time conjoining themselves more closely with good. AC 9207

In proportion as truth desires good it is conjoined with it. AC 10300

In proportion as truth receives good it reacts; and in proportion as it reacts, it is conjoined with it. AC 10729.2

Their conjunction is effected by their correspondence with each other. AC 2269

When good and truth are conjoined, there is consent in each and all things, namely, of good with truth, and of truth with good. AC 8702

There must be consent from both understanding and will before there can be conjunction. HD 23, AC 3157, 3158, 3161

It never appears to a person that there is any consent on the part of truth when this is being initiated and conjoined with good, that is, when a person is being regenerated. AC 3179.2

On the part of good there is will, and on the part of truth, consent. AC 3090

All conjunction of good and truth is effected in freedom, or spontaneously. AC 4031.2, 4096.5, HD 27

The Reciprocal Conjunction of Truth with Good Is from Good, Not from Truth

The love or will conjoins itself to the wisdom or understanding, and the wisdom or understanding does not conjoin itself to the love or will…It also appears as if the understanding conjoins itself to the love or will, but this is also a fallacy: The love or will conjoins itself to the understanding. and brings about a reciprocal conjunction…. It is the same with the marriage of good and truth…. Good does all things…Reciprocal conjunction namely of truth with good, there is absolutely none The reciprocal conjoining comes out of the life or good. DLW 410

When good has applied itself to truths. and has conjoined itself a little with them, truth appears to react, but…it is the good conjoined or adjoined to it which reacts through truth. AC 4380

When good flows into truths and conjoins them with itself, it pours into them good from its own, and by means of its own attaches them to itself whence comes the conjunction.…It appears as if truths act from themselves…Nevertheless truths do not act from themselves, but from the good which flows into the good attached by itself to the truths. AC 5928

A person must know further that truths do not of themselves enter into good, but that good adopts truths and adjoins them to itself for the truths of faith lie in a person’s memory as in a field extended beneath the inner sight. Good from the Lord flows in through this sight, and chooses from them, and conjoins with itself, the truths which are in agreement with it. AC 8516

In regeneration…it is good which acts, and truth which allows itself to be acted upon; and when good has applied itself to truths and has conjoined itself with them a little, then truth appears to react…Yet it is not the truth, but the good that is conjoined or adjoined to it. which reacts through the truth. AC 4380, cf. 10729

It might be thought that when good appropriates truth to itself, it is truth such as is the truth of faith that it appropriates; but it is the good of truth; truths which are not of use do indeed approach, but do not enter. all uses from truths are goods of truth…. In their beginning all uses are truths of doctrine, but in their progression they become goods; and they become gods when the person acts according to those truths. actions itself thus gives quality to truths; for all action descends from the will; and the will itself makes that become good which previously was truth. AC 4984

Appearances and Genuine Truths

Appearances Are Needed

We Have Life through Appearances

We could not be saved without the appearance that we live and act from ourselves. DP 79e, 116, TCR 438e

The Lord conjoins a person with Himself by means of appearances. DP 219.5

We Are All Limited by Appearances

Neither with human being nor angel are any truths ever pure that is without appearances; all and each are appearances or truth; but still they are accepted by the Lord as truths, if good is in them. AC 3207.3

No pure intellectual truth, that is, truth Divine is possible with a person; but the truths or faith which are in a person are appearances of truth to which fallacies of the senses adjoin themselves. AC 2053, HD 2 1

There adhere to (rational) truths many fallacies from the senses, which cause the truths not to be truths; but still, when the Divine good flows into them, and conceives them, they appear as truths, and are acknowledged as truths, although they are nothing but appearances of truth. AC 2524.2

All truth in its first infancy is not truth. but is that which is apparent of truth; but in process of time it puts off the appearance, and puts on the essence of truth. AC 3131.3

From appearances, the first rational supposes that

  • A person lives from himself.
  • The good a person does is from himself.
  • A person merits salvation by the good he does.
  • When a person is reborn, he is good, just and holy.
  • Good done from the understanding is actually done from the will.
  • There is no glory without the world’s glory.
  • Love begins from self and love of self.
  • There is no light other than the world’s light.
  • The Lord cannot give light to all in heaven.
  • There cannot be motion in the other life.
  • Spirits and angels cannot be seen.

AC 2196.2; cf. AC 2209, 2654, 3387.3. 3404.2

The Simple Especially Need Appearances

A person does not allow himself to be instructed apart from appearances. AC 1838

Therefore the sense of the Letter is made up of appearances of truth. SS 4

The simple can be instructed from appearances. AC 926, 845, 735, 1408.3, 1798.4, 2395.2

It is allowable for any one to speak from the appearance, nor can he do otherwise…. The simple and the wise speak alike, but do not think alike. All speak…according to the appearance (but the wise think according to the truth.) DP 163

Everyone in apparent good and truth supposes them to be genuine. AC 1712

(The spiritual person is) scarcely able to acknowledge any pure truth, such as the celestial acknowledge. Nevertheless, in these quasi truths, and Lord implants good, even if the truths are fallacious, or appearances of truth but the good is thus made obscure, being qualified by the truths with which it is conjoined. AC 2715.4

This is the reason why so many now say that the goods of charity are the fruits of faith: for so it appears at the beginning of regeneration. and from the appearance they draw this conclusion…However, it is not very important for the simple to know which is prior and which is posterior, provided they live in charity AC 3995.2

Let them say either that faith or that life saves, or let them put either this one or that one in the first place; but let them know…that one cannot exist apart from the other. SD 5973

What does it matter which is called the primary if only both are believed in?…AR 655.4, TCR 388

They who believe the Word simply have no need to know all these things. because they are in the end. AC 2094

Because Divine truths in the sense of the letter of the Word are for the most part appearances of truth, and the simple in faith and heart cannot be raised above them it is not sin or blasphemy to interpret the Word according to appearances, provided principles are not formed from these appearances and so confirmed as to destroy Divine truth in its genuine sense. AE 778c

The simple do not first assume principles contrary to the truth. AC 589, 1767

A sensual person, such as one is in the ages of infancy and early childhood, also the simpleminded, can think about and believe these and like things according to the sense of the letter;…While the adult who wishes to wise will not explain these things in the (literal) sense…. For if a wise adult should explain such expressions according to the sense of the letter, and confirm them by reasonings, he would destroy the genuine truth itself such as it is in heaven, and consequently would close up heaven to himself. AE 916

Appearances Should Not Be Denied

Apparent truths from the sense of the letter of the Word are not to be denied, lest faith in the Word perish with the simple. AC 9033, 9031

Natural appearances of truth are mostly fallacies; but with those who are in good they are not to be called fallacies, but appearances, and even in some respects truths; for the good which is in them. and in which is the Divine, causes another essence to be in them. AC 3207.4

As truths are the first things of the church–for truths teach life–therefore a mark was set on Cain, lest some one should kill him. AE 817.3

Appearances Confirmed Become Fallacies and Falsities

All fallacies which prevail with the evil and the simple arise from appearances which have been confirmed. So long as appearances remain appearances, they are apparent truths, according to which everyone may think and speak; but when they are accepted as real truths which is done when they are confirmed, then apparent truths become falsities and fallacies. DLW 108

Appearances of truth in the Word, which are truths clothed, may be caught at as naked truth, and when they are confirmed they become falsities. SS 91. TCR 461.3, AE 719

Evil can be confirmed equally with good but evil is confirmed by fallacies and appearances, which become falsities while confirmed; and when it is confirmed it appears as if it were of reason. DP 87e

It is not hurtful to think and speak in accordance with such truths, but it is hurtful to confirm them to such a degree as to destroy the genuine truth hidden within. SS 95

To live in evil, and to confirm falsities even to the destruction of genuine truth, is what condemns. SS 92

Every appearance confirmed as a truth becomes a fallacy; and to the extent that they confirm themselves from fallacies they become naturalists. DP 310, 187.2

Genuine Truths Are Needed…

…to Understand the Word

When the sense of the letter is not looked at from genuine truths it is believed according to the letter and is falsified. AE 720,719

The sense of the letter, if the genuine doctrine of the church does not shine before it, draws the mind away into various opinions whence come ignorance, heresies, and errors (refs.) LJ 14e

The things which are contained in the internal sense of the Word are no other than those which the genuine doctrine of the church teaches. AC 9086

Doctrine from the Word is useful if from genuine truths. TCR 421.1

Those who teach and who learn only the literal sense of the Word without the doctrine of the church as a guide, apprehend only those things which belong to the natural or external person; whereas those who teach and who learn from true doctrine drawn from the Word, understand also things which are of the spiritual or internal person. AC 9025

The spiritual sense of the Word is at this day disclosed by the Lord because the doctrine of genuine truth has now been revealed; and this doctrine. and none other, agrees with the spiritual sense of the Word. SS 25; cf. HD 7, DP 264

Genuine truth which must be of doctrine appears in the sense of the letter. SS 57

In the Literal sense the internal sense is open in many places. AC 3440

…To Enter Heaven

So far as his faith is from genuine truths, he enters heaven. AE 798b:3

Since they who confirm that faith produces charity have no genuine truths while they do not close heaven to themselves they can advance no farther than to the threshold of heaven. To such of them however, as have loved truths for the sake of truths heaven is opened when the Divine order has been restored with them. and that is done when charity and its good are in the first place and faith and its truths in the second. AE 798b:8; cf. HH 204

…To Open the Spiritual Mind

The genuine truths in a person’s storehouse are discriminated and separated from falsities; for the spiritual mind of a person cannot be formed except from genuine truths because heaven is in no others. AE 790.8

Where there is no genuine truth no genuine good is possible. TCR 753

…To Receive the Divine

The Divine good cannot be applied to any other vessels than genuine truths. AC 4247.3

The more genuine the truths are, the more perfectly is the Divine received. AC 2531.2

…To Be Enlightened

The more genuine the truths are…the more the person’s understanding is enlightened AC 2531.2

If it is genuine truth of faith in which they are enlightened, and if it is genuine good of charity with which they are enkindled, then it is the understanding of the internal person that is enlightened; and the will of the internal person that is enkindled. AC 9300.4

…To Receive Genuine Conjugial Love

Conjugial love is genuine in proportion as the truths conjoined with good are genuine. HH 376

…To Combat Faith Alone

The falsities which have flooded and devastated the church can be dispelled only by means of genuine truth opened in the Word. AE 950.2

…To Be Regenerated

No one can ever say he is regenerate unless he acknowledges and believes that charity is the primary of his faith and unless he is affected with love toward the neighbor and feels pity for him: his new will is formed from charity, and through charity the Lord operates good and thence truth; but not through faith without charity. AC 989

Those within the church can be regenerated through any doctrine. but those more than others who are in genuine truths. AC 6765e

Those Who Are in Genuine Affections Desire and See Genuine Truths

They who are in the affection of truth from this selfish origin do not care whether the truths they know are genuine, provided they are such as they can pass off as truths…But they who are in the genuine affection of truth…search the scriptures and supplicate the Lord for enlightenment, and when they are enlightened they rejoice from the heart. AC 8993

Genuine truths appear only to those who are enlightened. TCR 231, SS 57, De Verbo 24e

It Is an Appearance That Truth Is First in the Beginning

It appears as if truth were the primary thing of the church, because it is the first in time…. nevertheless the good of charity is the primary thing of the church. CL 126

When a person is being regenerated, the truth which is of faith apparently precedes, and the good which is of charity apparently follows;…so it appears at the beginning of regeneration. AC 3995

When a person forms a conclusion from natural perception, he believes that faith…is prior to charity, because he perceives how the truth which is of doctrine enters, but not how the good which is of life. because the former enters by an external, that is, by a sensuous way, but the latter by an internal way…. These and many other considerations lead a person to suppose, when judging from the sensuous and natural person that the truth which is of faith is prior to the good which is of charity; but all these are reasonings from fallacies, based on the appearance to the sensuous and natural person. AC 3324

In order that some idea may be formed of what appearances of truth are, let the following examples serve for illustration:

  • A person believes that he is reformed and regenerated through the truth of faith but this is an appearance; he is reformed and regenerated through the good of faith. that is, through charity towards the neighbor and love to the Lord.
  • A person believes that truth enables us to perceive what good is, because it teaches; but this is an appearance; it is good that enables truth to perceive, for good is the soul or life of truth.
  • A person believes that truth introduces to good when he lives according to the truth which he has learned; but it is good which flows into truth and introduces it to itself.
  • It appears to a person that truth perfects good, when yet good perfects truth.
  • To a person the goods of life appear to be the fruits of faith, but they are the fruits of charity. AC 3207.5

When (the person who is in the evil of life) thinks about faith and charity…. faith at once presents itself to him, but not charity, because this is opposed to evil of life hence he removes charity, and chooses only faith. AC 8094

Before charity is perceived, it appears to the person as though faith were in the first place, and charity in the second. F 31

It appears from various reasonings as though faith were prior to charity, but this is a fallacy. HD 121

…But it is to be known that when a person is regenerating, truth is not actually in the first place and good in the second, but only apparently but when the person is regenerated, good is in the first place and truth in the second. actually and perceptibly. HD 186

The person of the spiritual church seems to be regenerated through the truths of faith…But no one can ever be regenerated through truth, unless there is good with the truth. AC 2697

Before they are regenerate they believe truth to be both prior and superior, and so indeed it then appears…As they who are not being regenerated draw conclusions from the appearance, therefore there has been a dispute (about priority).…In itself good is prior, although before it had not appeared so. AC 3325

Good is actually firstborn, but truth apparently. AC 4926

In a human being the will precedes, for a person’s willing is the first of his life. and his understanding comes after, and applies itself in accordance with his willing…. Yet as the person’s will does not appear to the sense except through the understanding…it is therefore supposed that the truth which proceeds from the understanding is the firstborn, and yet it is not except in appearance. Hence the old controversy…. They who decided from the appearance said that truth is the firstborn, but they who did not decide from the appearance, acknowledged that good is the firstborn. AC 535 1

It Is a Genuine Truth That Charity Is First, Even in the Beginning

Charity Dominates at First, Although It Is Hidden

With the regeneration of the spiritual person the case is this; he is first instructed in the truths which are of faith, and is then kept by the Lord in the affection of truth; the good of faith. which is charity towards the neighbor is at the same time insinuated into him, but so that he hardly knows it, for it lies concealed in the affection for truth; and this to the end that the truth which is of faith may be conjoined with the good which is of charity. AC 2979.2

It is to be known that charity, which in its essence is the affection for knowing, understanding, willing and doing the truth, does not come to anyone’s perception before it has formed itself in the thought which is from the understanding, for then it presents itself under some form or appearance…Hence it is evident that charity is actually prior and faith posterior…For charity is from the Lord and is formed first in the spiritual mind; but as charity does not appear to a person before it is faith it may be said that faith is not with a person until it is made charity in form; wherefore concerning the manifestation of charity and faith with a person it may be said that they both come forth at the same moment for although charity produces faith, still as they are one, the one can never be separated from the other, so far as comes to the person’s perception, either as to degree or as to quality. AE 795

The person who is being regenerated is first in truth. and not in any good of life from truth…The good with those who are in the good of life from truth lies hidden in truth, deeply stored up and it gives them the affection for truth, and impels them to live according to truth. AC 6396

Genuine affection, which is of the good of charity, is not then observed but still it is present…. Indeed it had the dominion before but this could not appear to the person. AC 3336

After the time of reformation and regeneration has been completed, then the good itself which had lain inmostly concealed, and from within had disposed each and all things that had appeared to be of truth, or that truth had attributed to itself, comes forth and openly has the dominion. AC 3576

The reason why good was apparently in the posterior place, is that it lay inmostly concealed in all his affection; nor could it manifest itself…. But after the person has been regenerated these things recede, and the good, which had lain inmostly concealed, comes forth as it were from its place of confinement. AC 3603

When a person is in the affection for truth, in which he is in the beginning before he begins to be regenerated, even then good is continually flowing in but as yet has no vessels (that is, truths) into which to apply itself…. At that time however, as good is continually flowing in it produces the affection for truth, which is from no other source than the continual endeavor of Divine good to flow in. From this it is evident that even at that time good is in the first place and acts the principal part, although it appears as if it were truth that did this. AC 4247

As good does not appear while a person is being reborn and made a church, but conceals itself in the interior person, and manifests itself only in a certain affection which does not fall clearly into the sensation of the external or natural person…whereas truth makes itself manifest…. therefore many people have fallen into the error of thinking that truth is the firstborn…From this one error very many others have been derived. AC 4925

Good is actually prior because during a person’s regeneration good does not appear, because it conceals itself in the interior person, and only flows into truth through affection according to the degrees of conjunction of truth with it. AC 4928

Good always had the dominion but applies itself in order that truth may be conjoined with it…For truth flows in by an external or sensuous way, but good by an internal way;…so that unless in the prior state a sort of dominion were given to truth, or unless good so applied itself, truth would never be made good’s own. AC 4977

The first of all that is appropriated to a person is good, and successively truth. AC 10110

Knowledge which love acquires to itself from the affection for knowing, and perception of truth, which it acquires from the affection for understanding, and thought which it acquires from the affection for seeing that which it knows and understands, are not of the understanding, but they are of love. The thoughts and affections do indeed flow in out of the spiritual world; but they are not received by the understanding but by love according to its affections in the understanding. It appears as if the understanding receives them, and not the love or will; but this is a fallacy. It appears also as if the understanding conjoins itself to the love or will, but this is also a fallacy. DLW 410

The Doctrine of Genuine Truth Is the Doctrine of Charity

The genuine doctrine of the church is the doctrine of good thus the doctrine of life, which is of love to the Lord and of charity towards the neighbor. AE 724

The genuine doctrine of the church teaches the Lord, faith in Him, love to Him, and love of the good which is from Him. This love is charity toward the neighbor. AC 9086

The genuine doctrine of the Church is the doctrine of charity and at the same time of faith. and not the doctrine of faith without the former. AC 10764

The genuine truth of the doctrine of the church is that charity toward the neighbor and love to the Lord make the church with a person and that these loves are insinuated by the Lord through faith, that is, by means of the truths of faith which are from the Word.…He who is in this truth, and consults the Word is everywhere confirmed therein. AC 9032

The doctrine of genuine truth can be drawn in full from sense of the letter of the Word…All things that concern a person’s life, and consequently his salvation, are bare. SS 55, De Verbo 15e

Doctrine itself from the literal sense of the Word is one only, namely, the doctrine of charity and love. AC 3445; cf. 3419, 3420

The essentials of faith…being necessary to salvation. are stated in the letter such as they are in the internal sense; as for example, “You shall love Jehovah your God with all your heart.” AC 2225

But as regards the precepts of life, such as all things in the Decalogue. and many in the Law and the Prophets–these, being of service to a person’s very life, are of use in both senses, both the literal and the internal. AC 2609; see especially AC 9409

Acknowledging That Charity Is First Brings Greater Light

The spiritual can come from obscurity into light if only they are willing to be in the affirmative that all good is of love to the Lord, and of charity towards the neighbor AC 2718.6

It is the veriest truth of the church that love to the Lord and love towards the neighbor are the primary things. AC 4776

An enlightened understanding discriminates between apparent truths and truths themselves…But the understanding cannot be enlightened unless it is believed that love to the Lord and charity towards the neighbor are the principal and essential things of the church. He who proceeds from the acknowledgment of these, provided he himself it in them, sees innumerable truths in fact. he sees very many secrets disclosed to him, and this from interior acknowledgment, according to the degree of enlightenment from the Lord. AC 7233.3

He who is in light never doubts, still less denies, that love to the Lord and charity towards the neighbor are the essentials of the church and that upon them are founded all the truths which are of the Word, consequently which are of faith. AC 8928.3

When good takes the prior place, the natural is enlightened and therein it is seen what is genuine truth and good, and what is not genuine. AC 4250.2; cf. AC 10323. SS 57

They who think much about doctrinal things, but not about the goods of charitycan never know, still less perceive, that the truth which is of faith must be subordinated to the good which is of charity. If a person were to think from the goods of charity he would then plainly see that the truths which are of faith are in the second place and he would then also see the truths themselves as in light. AC 4245.2