Arcana Coelestia (Elliott) n. 10262

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10262. 'A hin' means how far things are joined together. This is clear from the meaning of 'a hin' - which was a liquid measure, at this point a measure of oil - as the extent to which things are joined together. 'Oil' means the Lord's celestial Divine Good, which is the essential power that binds all things together in heaven; consequently the measure of the oil means how far things are joined together, and the fullness of their being joined together. The reason why the Lord's celestial Divine Good is the essential power that binds all things together is that it is the essential being (ipsum esse) of the life that all things have. For that Divine Good imparts life to all things through the Divine Truth emanating from itself; and it imparts life in accordance with the specific character of whatever receives it. Angels are recipients; so too are people in the world. The truths and forms of good they have form their specific character, and this conditions the reception that takes place within them, and so conditions any joining together.

[2] Two measures which were used for sacred purposes are mentioned in the Word; one was for liquids, which was called the hin, the other was for dry substances, which was called the ephah. The hin served to measure oil and wine, and the ephah to measure flour and fine flour. The hin, used for oil and wine, was divided into four, whereas the ephah was divided into ten. The reason why the hin was divided into four was in order that it might mean that which binds things together; for 'four' means a joining together. But the reason why the ephah was divided into ten was in order that it might mean reception, the nature of which was indicated by the numbers; for 'ten' means much, all, and what is complete.

'Four' means a joining together, see 8877, 9601, 9674, 10136, 10137. 'Ten' means much, all, and what is complete, as 'a hundred' does, 1988, 3107, 4400, 4638, 8468, 8540, 9745, 10253.

[3] The fact that the hin was used for the oil and wine in the sacrifices, and was divided into four, whereas the ephah was used for the flour and fine flour, which were for the minchah in the sacrifices, and that it was divided into ten, becomes clear in Exod 29:40; Lev 5:11; 23:13; Num 15:3-10; 28:5,7,14. From these verses it is evident that 'a hin' means the extent to which things are joined together, and 'an ephah' the amount of reception. Furthermore the oil served to bind the fine flour together, and the fine flour to receive the oil; for a minchah consisted of oil and fine flour.

[4] In addition there were other measures that were used for ordinary purposes, both for dry substances and for liquids. The measures for dry substances were called the homer and the omer, and the measures for liquids the cor and the bath. A homer contained ten ephahs, and an ephah ten omers, whereas a cor contained ten baths, and a bath ten smaller parts; regarding all these, see Exod 16:36; Ezek 45:11,13,24.

[5] But where the new temple is dealt with in Ezekiel a different division of the ephah and the bath occurs. There the ephah and the bath are divided not into ten but into six, and the hin corresponds to the ephah, as is evident in the same prophet, in Ezek 45:13,14,24; 46:5,7,11,14. The reason for this is that in those places the subject is not celestial good and its ability to bind things together, but spiritual good and its ability to do so; and the numbers 'twelve', 'six', and 'three' have their correspondence in the spiritual kingdom, because they mean all and, when used in reference to truths and forms of good, mean all aspects of truth and good in their entirety. The fact that these are meant by 'twelve', see 3272, 3858, 3913, 7973, also by 'six', 3960(end), 7973, 8148, 10217; and in like manner 'three', by which from beginning to end, thus what is complete, is meant, and - in respect of real things - all, 2788, 4495, 5159, 7715, 9825, 10127. The reason why these numbers imply similar things is that larger numbers are similar in meaning to the simple ones which when multiplied produce them, 5291, 5335, 5708, 7973.

[6] Since 'a hin' also means how far something is joined to spiritual truth, a third part of a hin of oil was taken for the minchah in the sacrifices of a ram, and a third part of wine for the drink offering, Num 15:6,7; for spiritual good is meant by 'a ram', 2830, 9991. From all this it is again plainly evident that numbers are used in the Word to mean real things. What other reason could there be for the numbers used so often in Moses, Ezekiel, and elsewhere to specify amounts and measures?

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