• The Lord: New Century Edition

    By Emanuel Swedenborg
    Translated by George F. Dole

    Throughout his writings, the eighteenth-century scientist-turned-seer Emanuel Swedenborg uses the term “Lord” to mean Jesus Christ as the embodiment of God. In this short work, he emphasizes that the trinity of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are not three coexisting divine Persons but are three aspects within one divine Person—Jesus in his resurrection. Read more

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Description

Since the dawn of Christianity, there has been debate about the true nature of Jesus Christ. Was he a divinely inspired person or the incarnation of God on earth?

In his short work The Lord, Swedenborg presents an answer to the time-honored question of how Jesus and God are related: he argues that they became in every way one and the same. Throughout his works Swedenborg uses the term “Lord” to refer to Jesus as the embodiment of God. In this work he emphasizes that the traditional trinity of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit should be thought of not as three separate divine Persons that have always coexisted but as three aspects now present within one divine Person—Jesus in his resurrection.

The Lord also touches upon key themes in Swedenborg’s theology: the spiritual reasons why the Lord came to earth; the significance of the death and resurrection of his human form; and the ways in which his coming was foretold in the Old Testament. Throughout the book, Swedenborg provides extensive biblical references to support his arguments. He concludes with a brief chapter describing the New Jerusalem, a reference to both the city described in the book of Revelation and the new spiritual age that is now unfolding.

The Lord is part of the New Century Edition of the Works of Emanuel Swedenborg (NCE), an ongoing translation series. The NCE series incorporates the latest scholarship and translation standards for a more accurate and accessible rendering of Swedenborg’s works. Traditionally titled The Doctrine of the Lord, this short work is often published together with three other short works—Life, Faith, and Sacred Scripture—under the title The Four Doctrines. The Swedenborg Foundation will publish these four titles together in the forthcoming NCE hardcover annotated volume The Shorter Works of 1763.

About the Author

Emanuel Swedenborg (1688-1772) was a Swedish scientist, nobleman, and theologian who spent his life investigating the mysteries of the soul. Born in Stockholm to a staunchly Lutheran family, he graduated from the University of Uppsala and then traveled to England, Holland, France, and Germany to study the leading scientists of the time. He gained favor with Sweden’s King Charles XII, who gave him a position on the board of overseers of the Swedish mining industry. Later, he was granted a seat on the Swedish House of Nobles by Charles XII’s successor, Queen Ulrika Eleonora. Between 1743 and 1745 he began to have visions of heaven, hell, and Jesus Christ that resulted in a stream of books about the nature of God, the afterlife, and the inner meaning of the Bible. He devoted the last decades of his life to studying Scripture and presenting his own unique theology to the world.

George F. Dole holds a BA from Yale, an MA from Oxford, and a PhD from Harvard. Now professor emeritus, Dr. Dole taught ancient languages, the Bible, and theology at the Swedenborg School of Religion in Newton, Massachusetts. He is also the author of Freedom and Evil, Sorting Things Out, and A Book about Us. He lives in Bath, Maine.

About the New Century Edition

The New Century Edition of the Works of Emanuel Swedenborg presents a modern-language, scholarly translation of Swedenborg’s theological works. The series’ easy-to-read style retains the dignity, variety, clarity, and gender-inclusive language of Swedenborg’s original Latin, bringing his thought to life. Introductions and annotations by eminent, international scholars place Swedenborg’s writings in their historical context and illuminate obscure references within the text, enabling readers to understand and trace Swedenborg’s influence as never before.

Learn more about the New Century Edition

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