God as life


[1 of 1] Swedenborg (1688-1772, Sweden): primary subject "Life, origin of" (search under Beings/God)": source "True Christian Religion": detail "Section 470 - 471"
God, since He is infinite, is Life in Himself, which life He cannot by any possibility create, and so transcribe it into a man, for this would be to make him God. That such a thing could possibly be was an insane suggestion of the serpent or devil, which he instilled into Adam and Eve; for the serpent said, "In the day ye eat of the fruit of this tree, your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as God" (Gen. iii. 5). This dreadful persuasion, that God had transfused and transcribed Himself into men, was entertained, as I have been informed from their own lips, by the men of the most ancient church, at the period of its end or consummation; and it is on account of this horrible faith, in thus supposing themselves to be gods, that they lie concealed in a deep cavern, to which no one can approach without being seized with such an interior dizziness as to cause him to fall down.
 How plain is it for anyone to see, if he can but think from reason elevated above the sensualities of the body, that life is not creatable! For what is life, but the inmost activity of love and wisdom, which are in God, and which are God, which life may also be called the very essential living force? He whose eyes are open to see thus far, may also see further, that this life cannot possibly be transcribed into any man, unless love and wisdom be transcribed into him with it; and who denies, or can deny, that all the good of love, and all the truth of wisdom, are from God alone, and that as a man receives them from God, in the same proportion he has life from God, and is said to be born of God, that is, to be regenerated? And on the other hand, as far as a man does not receive love and wisdom, or what amounts to the same, charity and faith, from God, so far he does not receive life, which in itself is life, from God but from hell; he receives an inverted life, which is called in Holy Scripture spiritual death?