Arcana Coelestia (Elliott) n. 64

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64. This, then, is the internal sense of the Word, its very life, which is nowhere discernible from the sense of the letter. Yet so many are the arcana that several volumes would not be sufficient to explain them all. Here only a very few have been stated, such as may serve to confirm that the subject here is regeneration and that this starts with the external man and moves on to the internal. This is how angels perceive the Word. They know absolutely nothing of what belongs to the letter. They come nowhere near knowing the meaning of one single expression, let alone the names of the lands, cities, rivers, and persons which occur so frequently in historical and prophetical sections. They have a concept only of the things meant by expressions and names. By Adam in Paradise, for example, they Perceive the Most Ancient Church, yet not the Church but that Church's faith in the Lord; by Noah the Church surviving among its descendants, and which lasted down to the time of Abram; by Abraham they in no way perceive the historical character but a saving faith, which he represented; and so on. Angels in this manner perceive matters of a spiritual and celestial nature totally detached from expressions and names.

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