Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Understanding the Coming of the Lord

There are some beautiful teachings in the Heavenly Doctrines about the coming of the Lord. Here are two examples—one about His first coming and one about His second coming. Both passages indicate that the Lord did not just come twice to all people in a general way: He also comes to each individual person, over and over again throughout his or her life.
The Lord is present with every man, urging and pressing to be received; and His first coming, which is called the dawn, is when man receives Him, which he does when he acknowledges Him as his God, Creator, Redeemer, and Savior. From this time man's understanding begins to be enlightened in spiritual things, and to advance into a more and more interior wisdom; and as he receives this wisdom from the Lord, he advances through morning into day, and this day lasts with him into old age, even to death; and after death he passes into heaven to the Lord Himself; and there, although he died an old man, he is restored to the morning of his life, and the rudiments of the wisdom implanted in him in the natural world grow to eternity. (True Christian Religion 766)

The coming of the Lord is not according to the letter, that He is to appear again in the world; but it is His presence in everyone; and this exists whenever the gospel is preached and what is holy is thought of. (Arcana Coelestia 3900:9)

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