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< PART II. Assumption and Glorification of the Human by the Lord. ^ Discrete Degrees ^ Chapter XXVII. The Degrees of the Human, and whence taken. >

Chapter XXVI. The Human of the LORD before the Incarnation.

 

THE LORD before the assumption of the Human in the ultimate from the Virgin was as it were clothed with a certain higher or interior human formed by His proceeding Divine in the angelic heavens as a complex man. This was then the Divine human of the LORD and from it flowed in with men in the world the Spirit of the LORD in ancient times. This human is variously designated in the Writings:  

    "The Divine Itself in heaven, or in the grand man, was the divine human, and was JEHOVAH Himself thus clothed with the human. But when mankind became such that the Divine Itself clothed as the divine human could no longer affect them, that is when JEHOVAH could [thus] no longer come to man because he had so far removed himself, then JEHOVAH who is the LORD as to the Divine Essence, descended and took upon Him the Human [which] by conception was Divine, and by birth from the virgin was like another man's."-AC 3061.

    "The LORD came into the world and assumed the Human that He might put Himself in power to subjugate the bells, and to reduce all things to order both in the heavens and on the earths. This Human He superinduced over His former human. The Human that He superinduced in the world was like the human of a man in the world. Nevertheless both were Divine and therefore infinitely transcending the finite humans of angels and men; and as He fully glorified His Natural Human even to its ultimates, therefore He rose again with His whole body, differently from any man."- DLW 221.

    "It has been told me from heaven that in the LORD from eternity who is JEHOVAH, before the assumption of the Human in the world, dw two prior degrees existed actually, and the third in potency such as they are with the angels; but that after His assumption of the Human in the world He put on also the third or natural degree and thereby became a man like a man in the world, except that in Him this degree like the prior ones is infinite and uncreate while in angels and men these degrees are finite and created.... Before the assumption of the Human, the Divine influx into the natural degree was mediate through the angelic heavens; but after the assumption immediate from Himself."-DLW 233. (See also AC 5663, 6371, 10579, 4180, 6280, 9315 ; AE 1112.)

Before the Incarnation the third degree of the Human (mentioned in DLW 233) was in potency, that is, in the initial form, like the tree in the seed, afterward to become actual.

The "two prior degrees" (DLW 233) are not the Essential Divine called JEHOVAH and the Father in distinction from the Human or the Son but are the two higher degrees of His Human and are the same as the "former human" (n. 221 same Work). "The LORD from eternity " (n. 223) means not merely the Essential Divine but the LORD in His former human.

Before the Incarnation the power of the LORD to subdue evil and falsity and implant good and truth among spirits below the heavens and among men on earth, could be exercised only through the angels, because He had not then taken on the human and glorified it in His own Person. And the power exerted through the heavens could not transcend the amount and purity of their reception and appropriation of the influent Divine. The power was not from anything of the angels as their own, it was rather curtailed by that as in itself impure. It was from the Divine received by them. This power was chiefly by means of the opened and operative spiritual mind of the angels while their natural mind though regenerate was mostly quiescent. Still the spiritual power flowed out through their natural and could not surpass its state. The open and operative spiritual or internal man in these heavens is equivalent to the "two prior degrees in actuality," or rather is those two degrees; the quiescent natural is their "third degree in potency." The LORD at that time by means of the heavens as a whole had their two prior degrees in actuality and their third degree in potency. He also had in potency the ultimate natural which man has in the world, which is somewhat lower than anything possessed by the angels, their lowest being the limbus, the gross body having been rejected. (AC 3061, 6716 with 1729, 1718.) Hence the LORD before the Assumption bad in actuality the spiritual man such as it is with the angels, and in potency the whole natural even to the ultimate of the physical body which man has in the world. (DLW 234; HH 316 with 304 and 315.)

But in consequence of the continued decline and at length complete destruction of the Church among men on earth which was the base of the heavens and thus the fulcrum of their power, this angelic human or human Divine of the LORD was not sufficient for the salvation of man. Therefore the LORD assumed the Human and made it in Himself Divine, and thus became omnipotent even in the natural degree. (AC 6371 to 6373; AE 726(iii).)

Although the angelic human with which the LORD clothed Himself when He passed in through the heavens and presented Himself a Divine man in ancient times, is called the divine human, still it was not absolutely Divine, but only angelically divine. (AC 6000.) It is called divine as the heavens are called divine from the Divine they receive from the LORD. This internal part of His Human as well as the external He made absolutely Divine while in the world. (AC 6000.)

As already mentioned, the human which the LORD before Incarnation took upon Himself by transflux through the heavens is differently designated in the Writings:  

    "The Divine Human from eternity." (AC 6280, 3195; 3191 to be read with 6373 and 3061.)

    "The Former Human" over which He superinduced the natural human, which was like the human of a man in the world. (DLW 221.)

    "The Divine Itself in heaven." (AC 5663.)

    "The Human Divine." (AC 6371.)

    "The LORD from eternity." (AC 5110.)

    "The Divine Human." (AC 6280.)

In one sense the Divine Human from eternity is the same as man divine or divine-human-in-the-heavens; in a higher m divine human from eternity was prior because the Divine human from eternity was the Divine truth with Divine good in it proceeding from the Divine Esse and forming the heavens and then flowing into and through them. It was purer and stronger above the heavens than in them, as it was necessarily veiled with angelic qualities in the heavens by which it was weakened. While this divine truth or divine existence called "the Divine Human from eternity" was in union with the Divine Esse in the LORD above the heavens, it had "the glory with the Father before the world was" (of which the LORD speaks in John xvii, 5). In the Human which He assumed in the world He united this truth with the Essential Divine and He then had in His Human the glory He had with the Father before the world was; that is, the Divine Esse became united with the Divine Existere and the Divine Existere with the Divine Esse in all the degrees of the Human as above the heavens they were united in Him from eternity.

The two prior degrees in actuality which the LORD had in the heavens before Incarnation and the whole natural human which He held in potency He took upon Himself at the Incarnation, as will be presented in Diagram XXVII.

Bear in mind that the two prior degrees possessed by the LORD in actuality from the angels (DLW 233) are equivalent to the three degrees of the spiritual mind B (2nd form), as the two kingdoms are equal to the three heavens (HH 20-29), also that the third degree held in potency is equivalent to the three degrees of the natural mind C (2nd form); (see DLW 232 where it appears that the two degrees are equivalent to the two kingdoms in man and in heaven.) That these two degrees are equivalent to the three heavens is plain from the above reference. (HH 20-40.) That the third degree held in potency though here spoken of as one degree consists of three lesser degrees is plain from Divine Love and Wisdom 232 compared with n. 66 and 67 of the same work, and from the Doctrines throughout. Had not the natural body also been potential with the LORD before His Incarnation in the world, He could not have created from Himself the natural body of man nor have assumed it by birth from the virgin.

Concerning the end and necessity of the Incarnation consult Arcana Coelestia AC 4180, 4733, 6280, 6373, 6854, 6945, 7828, 7931, 7932; True Christian Religion 82-137; Heaven and hell 101; A.S. N. Y. Ed. p. 15 (London Ed. p. 21); Spiritual Diary 1502 to 1508.

The LORD, who as to His Divine Esse called JEHOVAH the Father was before the Incarnation the unmanifested God visible only in the form of an angel representing Him, became by the assumption and glorification of the Human the manifested God visible in His own Divine Person, thus affording new and added blessings-blessings of direct and full conjunction of life with Him before unattainable and equalled only by those of the original creation. "No one hath seen God at any time, the Only-begotten Son who is in the bosom of the Father, He hath expounded Him." (John 1, 18.) (TCR 109, 786, 787.)  


Previous: PART II. Assumption and Glorification of the Human by the Lord. Up: Discrete Degrees Next: Chapter XXVII. The Degrees of the Human, and whence taken.
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XXVI. The Human of the LORD before the Incarnation.

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