Psalms about the New Church
Brotherhood in the Church
A song of the ascents, of David.
Behold, how good and how pleasant it is
For brothers to dwell even as one!2
It is as the good oil upon the head,
Going down upon the beard, the beard of Aaron;
Which goes down upon the mouth7 of his robes,3
As the dew of Hermon, which goes down upon the mountains of Zion;
For there Jehovah commanded the blessing:
Life, even to eternity.
|verses||topic||Summary of the Spiritual Sense|
|11,12||Good itself is the conjunction of good and truth,|
|2||11,12||for the good of love flows into the truths of the external or natural man.|
|3||12,17||The truth of good is from heaven upon those who are in the church, in which is salvation.|
Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell even as one! (v. 1)
AE 375:26. “Brothers” here signify good and truth, for these are called “brothers” in the Word. Therefore, “Behold, how good and how lovely it is for brothers to dwell together” signifies that in the conjunction of good and truth is every heavenly good and delight, for every heavenly good and delight is from the conjunction of good and truth. “The oil upon the head that comes down upon the beard, Aaron’s beard, that comes down upon the hem of his garments,” signifies that from that conjunction is the good and delight of heaven, from inmosts to ultimates, “head” signifying the inmost, “beard” the ultimate. “To come down upon the hem of his garments” signifies the influx and conjunction of celestial good and spiritual good.... This is said of Aaron, because he represented the Lord in respect to Divine good, since every good and every conjunction of good and truth is from Him.... “The dew of Hermon” signifies Divine truth, and “the mountains of Zion” signify Divine good. Therefore “like the dew of Hermon that comes down upon the mountains of Zion” signifies the conjunction of truth and good, which is here treated of. And as angels and men have all their spiritual life from that conjunction, it is added, “There Jehovah has commanded the blessing of life to eternity.” ...From this it is clear what is the nature of the Word in its spiritual sense, notwithstanding its sound in the letter.
AE 746:20. The Lord means by “brother” the like as by “neighbor,” and “neighbor” signifies in the spiritual sense good in the whole complex, and good in the whole complex is the good of charity. “Brother” has a similar meaning in the spiritual sense in many passages in the Old Testament. As in Moses:
Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thy heart (Lev. 19:17).
7The opening at the neck (see AC 9913, 9914)
Questions and Comments
- Have you ever experienced a sense of “brotherhood” in the church?
- What kind of things create unity in the church?
- What kinds of things create disunity in the church?
- What should we do when there is disunity in the church?