ESDRAS   TO INDEX

 The book of the prophesy of  

 CHAPTER 1

1.        The second book of the prophet Esdras, the son of Saraias, the son of Azarias, the son of Helchias, the son of Sadamias, the son of Sadoc, the son Achiton, the son of Achias, the son of Phinees, the son of Heli, the son of Amarias, the son of Azioi, the son of Marimoth, the son of Arna, the son of Ozias, the son of Borith, the son of Abisei the son of Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron of the tribe of Levi which was captive in the land of the Medes, in the reign of Artaxerxes king of the Persians.

The Lords compassion for Israel

2.        And the word of the Lord came to me saying: "Go and show My people their sinful deeds, and their children their wickedness which they have done against Me, that they may tell their children.  For the sins of their fathers are increased in them, because they have forgotten Me, and have offered to strange gods.

3.        Am I not He who brought them out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage?  But they have provoked Me to wrath, and despised My counsels.

4.        You therefore, pull out the hair of your head and cast evil upon them, for they have not been obedient unto My law, for it is a rebellious people.

5.        How long shall I forebear with them to whom I have done so much good?  Many kings have I destroyed for their sake, Pharaoh with all his servants, and all his power did I smite down.

6.        I destroyed all the nations before them.  In the east I scattered the people of two provinces, namely Tyrus and Sidon, slaying all their enemies.  You therefore speak thus unto them saying:

7.        Thus says the Lord: I led you through the sea, I began giving you a large and safe passage, and I gave you Moses for a leader and Aaron for a priest.  I gave you light in a pillar of fire, and great wonders have I done among you, yet you have forgotten Me, says the Lord.

8.        Thus says the Almighty Lord: The quails were a token to you, I gave you tents for your safeguard, yet you nonetheless murmured therein and did not triumph in My name for the destruction of your enemies, but to this day you yet murmur.

9.        Where now are the benefits that I have done for you?  When you were hungry and thirsty in the wilderness did you not cry to Me saying: Why has Thou brought us into this wilderness, to kill us?  It had been better for us to have served the Egyptians than to die in this wilderness.

10.     Then I had pity on your mourning and gave you manna to eat.  Thus you ate angels bread.  And when you were thirsty, did I not cleave the rock and waters flowed to your fill?

11.     For the heat I covered you with the leaves of the trees.  I divided a fruitful land among you; I cast out the Canaanites, the Pherezites, and the Philistines before you.  What more shall I yet do for you?  Says the Lord.

12.     Thus says the Almighty Lord: When you were in the wilderness athirst in the river of the Amorites and blaspheming my name, I gave you not fire for your blasphemies, but cast a tree in the water and made the river sweet.

The Lord turns from Israel

13.     What shall I do unto you O Jacob, and you Judah who would not obey Me?  I will turn myself to other nations, and to those will I give My name, that they may keep My statutes.

14.     Seeing you have forsaken Me, I also will forsake you.  When you desire Me to be gracious unto you, I then shall have no mercy upon you.  Whenever you shall call on Me, I will not hear you.

15.     For you have defiled your hands with blood, and your feet are swift to commit murder.  You have not as were it forsaken Me, but your own selves, says the Lord.

16.     Thus says the Almighty Lord.  "Have I not treated you as a Father his sons, as a mother her daughters, and as a nurse her young babes, that you should be My people, and I should be your God, that you would be My children, and I should be your Father?

17.     I gathered you together as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings.  And now what shall I do to you?  I will cast you out from My face.  When you offer to Me, I will turn My face from you.

18.     I have forsaken your solemn feast days, your new moons, and your circumcisions.  I sent to you My servants the prophets whom you took and slew tearing their bodies to pieces, whose blood I will require of your hands, says the Lord.

19.     Thus says the Almighty Lord: Your house is desolate; I will cast you out as the wind blows stubble.  And your children shall not be fruitful, for they have despised My commandments, and done the thing that is evil before Me.

20.     Your houses will I give to a people to come, which not having heard of Me, yet shall they believe Me, to whom I have shown no signs, yet they shall do what I have commanded them.

21.     They have seen no prophets, yet they shall call their sins to remembrance and acknowledge them.  I take to witness the grace of the people to come whose little ones rejoice in gladness, who though they have not seen Me with bodily eyes, yet in spirit believe the thing that I say.

22.     Thus says the Lord: I brought this people out of bondage and I gave them My commandments by My servants the prophets whom they would not hear, but despised My counsels.

23.     The mother that bore them said to them: Go you're way my children for I am a widow and forsaken, I brought you up with gladness, but with sorrow and heaviness have I lost you.

24.     For you have sinned before the Lord your God, you have done the thing that is evil before Him.  What then shall I do for you?  I am a widow and forsaken, go thus your way O My children and ask mercy of the Lord.

25.     As for me O Father, I call on Thee for witness over the mother of these children, which would not keep Thy covenant, that Thou will bring them to confusion, and their mother to a spoil, that there may be no offering of them.

26.     Let them be scattered abroad among the heathen.  Let their names be put out of the earth, for they have despised Thy covenant.

27.     Woe to you Asher, you who hides the unrighteousness in you!  O you wicked people, remember what I did to Sodom and Gomorrah, whose land lies in clods of pitch and heaps of ashes, even so will I do to them that hear me not, says the Lord.  

  Chapter 2

  In the end Gods promise with Israel stands

1.        Thus said the Lord unto Esdras: Tell My people that I will give them the kingdom of Jerusalem, which I would have given to Israel.  Their glory also I will take to Me, and give to these the everlasting tabernacles which I had prepared for them.

2.        They shall have the tree of life for an ointment of sweet savor; they shall neither labor nor be weary.  Go and you shall receive.  Pray that the days may be few to you, that they may be shortened.

3.        The kingdom is already prepared for you, watch therefore. Take heaven and earth to witness, for I have broken the evil in pieces, and created the good, for I live, says the Lord.

4.        Mother embrace your children, and bring them up with gladness. Make their feet fast as a pillar, for I have chosen you, says the Lord.

5.        And I will again raise up those that are dead from their places, bringing them out of the graves, for I have known My Name in Israel.  Fear not you mother of the children, for I have chosen you, says the Lord.

6.        For your help I will send my servants Esey and Jeremy after whose counsel I have sanctified and prepared for you twelve trees laden with divers fruits. And equally many fountains flowing with milk and honey and seven mighty mountains on which grow roses and lilies whereby I will fill your children with joy.

7.        Do right to the widow, judge for the fatherless, give to the poor, defend the orphan, clothe the naked, heal the broken and the weak, and laugh not a lame man to scorn.

8.        Defend the maimed, and let the blind man come into the sight of My clearness, keep the old and the young within your walls.  Wheresoever you find the dead take them and bury them, and I will give you the first place in My resurrection.

9.        Abide still O my people and take your rest, for your peace shall come.  Nourish your children O you good nurse, establish their feet.  And as for the servants, whom I have given you, there shall not one of them perish, for I will require them from among your number.

10.     Be not weary, for when the day of trouble and heaviness comes, others shall weep and be sorrowful, but you shall be merry and have abundance.  The Heathen shall envy you, but they shall not be able to do anything against you, says the Lord.

11.     My hands shall cover you so that your children shall not see hell.  Be joyful O you mother with your children, for I will deliver you, says the Lord.

12.     Remember your children that are asleep, for I shall bring them out of the sides of the earth, and show mercy to them, for I am merciful, says the Lord Almighty.

13.     Embrace your children until I come, and show mercy to them, for My wells run over and My grace shall not fail.

Proclamation to the Gentiles

14.     I Esdras received a charge of the Lord upon mount Oreb that I should go to Israel.  But when I came to them they set me at nothing, and despised the commandments of the Lord.

15.     Therefore I say to you O you Gentiles that hear and understand: Look for your Shepherd, He shall give you everlasting rest, for He is near at hand who will come in the ending of the world.  Be ready to the reward of the kingdom.

16.     For the everlasting light shall shine upon you forever.  Flee the shadow of this world; receive the joyfulness of your glory.  I testify my Savior openly.

17.     O receive the gift that is given you and be glad, giving thanks to Him who has called you to the heavenly kingdom.

18.     Arise and stand, behold the number of those that are sealed in the feast of the Lord, those who departed from the shadow of the world and received glorious garments of the Lord.

19.     Take your number O Zion, and shut up those of you that are clothed in white, which have fulfilled the law of the Lord.

20.     The number of your children, for whom you longed is fulfilled, entreat the power of the Lord that your people, that have been called from the beginning may be hallowed.

21.     I Esdras saw upon mount Zion a great people whom I could not number, and they all praised the Lord with songs.  And in the midst of them was a young man of high stature, taller than all the rest.

22.     And He was placing crowns upon the heads of every one of them; He being more exalted, at which I marveled greatly.  So I asked the angel and said: "Sir who are these?"

23.     He then answered: "These are they that have put off the mortal clothing and put on the immortal, and having confessed the name of God are now crowned and receive palms."

24.     Then said I to the angel: "What young person is He that crowns them, and gives them palms in their hands?"  To which he answered.  "This is the Son of God whom they have confessed in the world".

25.     Then I began to commend them greatly who stood so stiffly for the name of the Lord.  And the angel said to me: "Go your way and tell My people what manner of things, and how great wonders of the Lord God you have seen".

  Chapter 3

  Esdras confers

1.        In the 30th year after the ruin of the city, I Sealtiel also named Ezra, was in Babylon and lay troubled upon my bed, my thoughts troubled me much for I beheld the desolation of Zion and the wealth of them that dwelt at Babylon.  And my spirit was sore moved so that in my fear I began to speak to the Most High and said:

2.        "O Lord who bears rule, at the beginning when Thou did plant the earth Thou was alone and spoke.  Thou commanded the dust to give a body to Adam, a body without spirit, the workmanship of Thy hand.

3.        And Thou did breathe into him the breath of life and he was made living before Thee.  And Thou led him into paradise, which Thy right hand had planted before ever the earth came forth.

4.        And to him Thou gave commandment to love Thy way, which he transgressed, and immediately Thou appointed death in him and in his generations of whom came nations tribe’s peoples and kindred out of number.

5.        But the people walked after their own will, and did wicked things before Thee, and despised Thy commandments.  And in process of time Thou brought the flood upon those that dwelt in the world destroying them.

6.        That as death was to Adam, so was the flood to these.  But one of them Thou left namely Noah with his household and all righteous men that came of him.

7.        And when they that dwelt upon the earth began to multiply, and had gotten many children and were a great people, they again began to be more ungodly than the first.

8.        When they then lived so wickedly before Thee, Thou did chose Thee a man from among them whose name was Abraham, him Thou did love, and to him only Thou did show Thy will and made an everlasting covenant with him, promising him that Thou would never forsake his seed.

9.        And to him Thou gave Isaac, and to Isaac Thou gave Jacob and Esau As for Jacob Thou did chose him to Thee, but passed up Esau.  And so Jacob became a great multitude.

10.     And when it came to pass when Thou led his seed out of Egypt bringing them to mount Sinai, Thou did bow the heavens and the earth was moved, and the depths trembled.

11.     Thy glory went through four gates, those of fire, of earthquake, of wind, and of cold, that Thou might give the law to the seed of Jacob and diligence to the generations of Israel.

12.     And yet did Thou not take away from them the wicked heart so that Thy law might bring forth fruit in them.  For the first Adam bearing a wicked heart transgressed and was overcome, and so were all that are born of him.

13.     Thus infirmity was made permanent, for yes the law was in the hearts of the people, but with a malignant root so that the good departed while the evil remained.

14.     And so the times passed and the years being brought to an end, then Thou did raise up to Thyself a servant called David whom Thou commanded to build a city unto Thy name, and to offer incense and oblations.

15.     When this then was done many years, then they that inhabited the city forsook Thee and in all things did as Adam and all his generations had done, for they also had a wicked heart.  And accordingly Thou gave the city over into the hands of Thy enemies.

16.     And so I thought, are then the deeds of them that inhabit Babylon any better that they should therefore have the dominion over Zion?  For when I came there and saw impieties without number, my heart failed me.

17.     For in these years I saw how Thou suffered them that sin, and spared the wicked ones, how Thou destroyed Thy people, preserving Thy enemies, nor did Thou make it known how I was to comprehend these things.

18.     Are then they of Babylon better than those of Zion?  Or are there any other people that know Thee besides Israel?  Or what generation has so believed Thy covenants as Jacob?  And yet their reward appears not, nor is there fruit of their labor.

19.     For I have gone here and there among the heathen, and saw how they flow in wealth and think not upon Thy commandments.  Weigh therefore now our wickedness in the balance with them that dwell in the world, and it will be found that Thy name is found nowhere but in Israel.

20.     For when have they that dwell upon the earth not sinned in Thy sight?  Or what people have so kept Thy commandments?  Thou shalt find that by name Israel has kept Thy precepts but not the heathens.

   Chapter 4

  Uriel questions Esdras

1.        And the angel that was sent to me answered: "Your heart is perplexed for the things in this world, and do you now think to comprehend the way of the Most High?"

2.        Then I said, "Yes my Lord".  And he answered: "I am sent to show you three ways, to set before you three similitude's, which, if you can declare me one I will also show you what you desire to see and teach you from where the wicked heart is."

3.        And I said, "Speak on my Lord".  Then he said: "Go weigh me the weight of fire, or measure me the blast of the wind, or call me back the day that is past."

4.        Then I answered: "What man born of woman is able to do so that you should ask me of such things?"  And he said: "If I had asked you how many dwellings there are in the midst of the sea, or how many springs there are at the entrances of the deep, or how many springs there be above the firmament.

5.        Or where the outgoing of paradise are, then perhaps you would have answered me; I never went down into the deep, nor into the realm of death nor did I climb up into heaven, nor have I seen paradise.

6.        I then have asked you of only the fire, the wind, and of the day through which you have passed from which you cannot be separated and yet you cannot answer me them.

7.        And he said also: Your own things such as where you grew up with you know not, how then should your vessel be able to comprehend the way of the Highest?  For the ways of the Lord are forever, while you being mortal living in a world that perishes, how shall your vessel comprehend eternity?

8.        Then I said: "It were better that we be not at all then that we should live in wickedness and suffer and not know why."

9.        He then answered: "I went once into a forest, and the trees took counsel saying: Come let us go and make war against the sea that it may depart from before us and make ourselves more woods.

10.     And the floods also in like manner took counsel saying: Come let us go and subdue the woods of the plain, that we may make us there also another place.

11.     But the thoughts of the forest was in vain, for the fire came and consumed it, and the thoughts of the waves of the sea likewise came to nothing, for the sand stood up and stopped them.

12.     If you now were to judge between these two, who would you begin to justify, and who would you condemn?"  And I answered, "Verily, it is a foolish thought that both have devised, for the ground is given to the woods, and the sea also has its place to bear its floods".

13.     He then answered: "You have given a right judgment.  But why then do you not judge yourself likewise?  For just as the ground is given to the woods and the sea to its floods, even so they that dwell upon the earth may understand nothing but what is upon the earth.  And they that dwell above the heavens may only understand the things that are above the heights of the heavens."

14.     Then I answered: "I pray Thee O Lord why then is the light of understanding given me?  For it was not in my mind to be curious of the high things, but of such as pass by us daily.

15.     Namely, why Israel is given up as a reproach to the heathen, and for what cause are the people whom Thou loved given over to ungodly nations?  Why is the law of our forefathers brought to nothing, and the written covenants have come to no effect?

16.     We pass out of the world as grasshoppers and our life is astonishment and fear, and we are not worthy to obtain mercy.  But what then will He do for His name whereby we are called?  It is of these things that I asked."

17.     Then he said: "The more you search, the more you will marvel, for the world hastens to pass away, and it cannot comprehend the things that are promised to the righteous in time to come.

18.     For this world is full of unrighteousness and infirmities.  And concerning the things of which you asked me, it is so that the evil is sown while the destruction thereof is not yet come.

19.     If therefore that which is sown is not turned inside out, and if not the place where the evil is sown pass away, then that which is sown in good cannot come.

20.     For see how much ungodliness the grain of evil seed that from the beginning was sown in the heart of Adam has brought forth unto now, and how much more shall it yet bring till the time of its threshing?

21.     Judge now for yourself how much fruit of wickedness the grain of evil seed has brought, and these ears being without number how great a area shall they fill when they are cut down?"

22.     Then I said: "How and when shall these things come to pass?  And why are our years few and evil?"

23.     And He answered: "Do not hasten above the Most High, for you have exceeded greatly, your haste is for yourself, but that of the Most High for many.

24.     Did not the souls of the righteous also asked questions of that sort in their chambers saying; How long shall I hope on this fashion, and when will the harvest of our reward appear?"

25.     And the archangel answered furthermore saying, "When the number of those that are like you is filled.  For He has weighed the world in a balance and by measure has He measured the times, and by number has He numbered them.  And He does not move nor stir them until the said measure is fulfilled.

26.     Then I said: "O Lord who bears rule, we are full of impiety, perhaps then it is for our sakes that the floors of the righteous are not filled, for the sins of them that dwell upon the earth."

27.     So he said: "Go and ask a woman with child if when her nine months are fulfilled if then her womb may keep the birth within her any longer."  At which I answered, "No Lord she cannot".

28.     And he said: "In the grave, the chambers of souls are like the womb of a woman, for just as a travailing woman makes haste to escape the necessity of travail, so also these places hasten to deliver those things that are committed to them.  Then the things which you desired to see will be disclosed to you."

29.     Then I said: "If I have found favor in Thy sight, and if it be possible and meet therefore, show me if there is more to come than that which is past, or more past than to come?  For what is past I know, but what is in the future I know not."

30.     And he said, "Stand on my right and I shall expound a similitude to you".  And behold, a hot burning oven passed before me, and as the flame of it had gone by I beheld only the smoke to remain.

31.     After this a watery cloud passed by me and let down much rain with a storm, and the stormy rain having passed only the drops remained.

32.     Then said he to me: "Consider within yourself that just as the rain is more than the drops, and the fire greater than the smoke that remained, so also the quantity of what is passed is greater."

33.     Then I prayed and said: "Do you think that I may live until that time?  Or what shall happen in those days?"  And he answered: "As for the tokens whereof you asked me, I am allowed to tell you part thereof, but concerning your life, I am not sent to show you, nor do I know it."

Chapter 5

The ending times

1.     Concerning the tokens then behold; the days shall come that they that dwell upon the earth shall be taken in great number, and the way of truth shall be hidden, and the land shall be barren of faith.

2.       But iniquity shall be increased above that which you now see, or even over that which you have heard of from long ago.  And the land that you now behold having root, shall suddenly be seen wasted.

3.        But if the Most High grants you to live, then after the third trumpet you shall see the sun to shine suddenly again in the night, and the moon in time of day.

4.        And blood shall drop out of wood, and stones shall speak with voices. The people shall be troubled and even he shall rule whom they that dwell upon the earth did not look for.

5.        And the birds shall take their flight away together, and the Sodomish sea shall cast out fish and make a noise in the night, which many have not known, but they will all hear it.

6.        There shall be confusion in many places, and the fire shall often be sent out again, and wild beast shall change their places, and menstruous women shall bring forth monsters.  Salt water shall be found in sweet, and friends shall destroy one another.

7.        Then shall wit hide itself, and understanding withdraw itself into its secret chambers, and shall be sought of by many, but not be found.  Then shall unrighteousness and inconsistency be multiplied upon the earth.

8.        One land shall ask another; "Is righteousness that makes a man righteous gone through you?"  And it shall answer: No!  At the same time men shall hope but obtain nothing, they shall labor but their ways shall not prosper.

9.        I had authority to show you such tokens, and if you will pray again and weep as now fasting seven days, you shall hear yet greater things."

10.     Then I awakened, and an extreme feebleness went through all my body, and my mind was troubled so that it fainted.  But the angel that had come to talk with me comforted me and set me upon my feet.

Esdras visited by Salathiel

11.     And in the second night it came to pass that Salathiel, the captain of the people, came to me saying: "Where have you been, and why is your face so heavy?  Do you not know that Israel is committed to you in the land of their captivity?

12.     Up then, eat bread, and forsake us not as a shepherd that leaves his flock in the hands of cruel wolves."  Then said I to him: "Go your way and leave me here and return after seven days".  And he heard and went from me.

13.     And so I fasted seven days mourning and weeping like as Uriel the angel commanded me.  And after seven days the thoughts of my heart were very grievous to me again, and my soul recovered the spirit of understanding, and I again began to talk with the Most High and said:

  Esdras reasons again

14.     "O Lord who bears rule.  Of all the woods of the earth and of all the trees thereof Thou has chosen Thyself only one vine.  And of all the lands of the whole world Thou has chosen Thyself one region.  And of all the flowers one lily.

15.     And of all the depths of the sea Thou has filled Thyself one river, and of all the built cities Thou has allowed Zion unto Thyself.  And of all the birds that are created Thou has named Thyself one dove, and of all the cattle that are made Thou provided Thyself one sheep.

16.     And among all the multitudes of this people Thou has gotten Thyself one people.  And to this people, whom Thou loved, Thou gave them a law that is approved of all.

17.     But now O Lord why has Thou given the one unto the many?  And dishonored the one root beyond the others, and scattered Thy only one among the many?

18.     And they, which opposed Thy promises, who did not believe Thy covenant, have trod them down.  If Thou therefore are so angry with them, punish them rather with Thy own hand."

19.     And having spoken these words, the angel that had come previously came to me in the night, was sent unto me and said: "Listen to me and I shall instruct you, pay attention to what I say, and I will tell you more."

20.     And I said, "Speak on my Lord".  Then said he: "You are sore troubled in your mind for Israel's sake, do you now love that people more than He who made them?"

21.     And I said: "No Lord, but of very grief have I spoken, for my reigns pain me every hour laboring to comprehend the way of the Most High, to seek out part of His judgment."

22.     And He said, "You cannot".  I then said: "Wherefore Lord, whereunto then was I born, or why was not my mothers womb my grave that I might not have seen the travail of Jacob, and the wearisome toil of the people of Israel?"

23.     He said: "Number me the things that are not yet, and gather me the drops that are scattered.  Make me the flowers green again that are withered, open me the places that are closed, and bring me forth the winds that are shut up in them.  Show me the image of a voice, then I will declare to you the thing that you labor to know."

24.     And I said: "O Lord who bears rule, who may know these things except He who has not his dwelling with men, as for me, I am unwise, how then may I speak of the things of which Thou ask me?"

25.     And he said: "Just as you can do none of these things of which I spoke, even so you cannot find out My judgment, or to its end know the love that I have promised to My people."

26.     And I said: "Behold O Lord, Thou has charge of all that are reserved to the end, and what will they do that have been before me, or that are now, or that will come yet after us?"

27.     And He said, "I will liken my judgment to a ring, for just as there is no slackness of the last so there is no swiftness of the first".

28.     So I answered: "Could Thou not have made those that have been and that are now as well as those that are to come, all at once so that Thou might show Thy judgment that much sooner?"

29.     Then He answered, "The creature may not hasten above its Maker, nor may the world hold them all at once that shall be created therein".

30.     And I said: "How is this to be understood with what Thou has said that Thou will give life to all Thy creation at once?  For if all creatures will live at once, might it not be now then also that Thy creation support them all at once?"

31.     And He said: "Ask the womb of a woman when she brings forth children, why she does not bring them forth all at once but one after the other.  Ask her then to bring them forth all at once."

32.     And I said, "She cannot, but must do it by distance of time".  And He said: "Even so have I given the womb of the earth to those that be sown in it in their times.  For just as the young child may not bring forth the things that belong to the aged, even so have I disposed the world which I created."

33.     And I asked: "Since Thou has given me opportunity, allow me to speak more to Thee.  For our mother of whom Thou has told me, is she still young, or is she now approaching old age?"

34.     And He said: "Ask a woman who is bearing children, and she will tell you.  Say to her, why are not they whom you bring forth now like unto those whom you brought forth before, but of less stature?

35.     And she will answer you; those born in the strength of youth are of one fashion, but they, which are born in time of age, when the womb begins to fail, are different.

36.     You therefore consider how you are less of stature than those that came before you, and even less will be those that will come after you For as the creature begins to wax old, so also his strength of youth."

37.     Then I said: "Lord I pray Thee, if I have found favor in Thy sight, show Thy servant by what Thou will visit Thy creature."

   Chapter 6

  The end times

1.     And He said to me: "In the beginning when the earth was made, before the borders of the world were in place, or ever the winds blew, before it thundered and lightened, or ever the foundations of paradise were laid.

2.      Before the fair flowers were seen, or ever the movable powers were established, before the innumerable multitude of angels were gathered together or ever the heights of the air were lifted up.

3.     Before the measures of the firmament were named, or ever the chimneys in Zion were hot, before the present years were sought out or ever the inventions of them that now sin were turned.

4.      Before they were sealed that have gathered faith for a treasure, then I considered these things, and they all were made through Me alone, and through none other.  By Me also they shall be ended, and by none other."

5.      Then I said: "What shall be the parting asunder of the times, or when shall be the end of the first, and the beginning of it that follows?"

6.      And He said: "From Abraham to Isaac when Jacob and Esau were born in him, Jacob's hand held first the heel of Esau.

7.      For Esau is the end of this world, and Jacob the beginning of what follows, the hand of man is between the heel and the hand.  Other questions do not ask Esdras."

8.      Then I said: "O Lord that bears rule, if I have found favor in Thy sigh. I ask Thee, show Thy servant the last of Thy tokens part of which Thou did show me in the previous night."

  The tokens

9.      So He answered, "Stand upon your feet and hear a mighty sounding voice and it shall be as were it a great motion, but the place where you stand shall not be moved.

10.     Therefore when it speaks, be not afraid, for the word is of the end and the foundations of the earth are understood.  For at the sound of these things they will tremble and be moved, for they know that the end entails change."

11.     And it happen that when I heard it I stood upon my feet and listened.  And behold, there was a voice that spoke the sound of which was like the sound of many waters.

12.     And it said;  “Behold, the days come that I will begin to draw near, to visit them that dwell upon the earth, I will begin to make inquisition of them what they conceive to be to hurt unjustly with their unrighteousness.

13.     And when the affliction of Zion shall be made full, and when the world that shall begin to vanish away shall be finished, then will I show these tokens.

14.     The books shall be opened before the firmament and altogether they shall see.  Children of a year old shall speak having a voice, women with child shall bring forth-untimely children of three, or four months old, and they shall live and be raised up.

15.     Sown places shall suddenly appear unsown, full storehouses shall suddenly be found empty, and the trumpet shall give a sound which when it is heard everyone shall suddenly be afraid.

16.     At that time shall friends fight one against the other like enemies.  For the earth shall stand in fear of those that dwell therein.  The springs of the fountains shall stand still and not run for three hours.

17.     Whosoever then remain of all these that I have told you, they shall escape and see My salvation and the end of your world, and those that are received, who have not tasted death from birth, shall see it.

18.     And the hearts of the inhabitants shall be changed, to be turned into another meaning.  For evil shall be put out, and deceit quenched.  As for faith, it shall flourish, corruption shall be overcome, and the truth which for so long had been without fruit, shall be declared."

19.     While He then so talked with me, I looked upon Him little by little, and these words He said to me: "I have come to show you these things this night.  If then you will pray yet more and fast again seven days, I will again declare you greater things than these.

20.     For your voice is heard before the Most High, for He has seen your righteous dealings, and He has seen your chastity which you had ever since your youth, wherefore He has sent me to show you these things, and to say to you:

21.     Be of good comfort, and fear not, and hasten not with the times that trouble you, to think vain things, so you may not be troubled in latter times."

Esdras speaks of creation

22.     And it came to pass after this that I wept again and fasted seven days in like manner that I might fulfill the three weeks, which he told me.  And in the eight night my heart was vexed in me again, and I began to speak before the Most High, for my spirit was greatly set on fire, and my soul in distress.

23.     And I said: "O Lord Thou spoke from the beginning of creation, even the first day, and said thus: Let heaven and earth be made, and Thy word was a perfect work.

24.     Then there was Thy Spirit and darkness and silence was on every side.  The sound of man's voice was not yet formed.  Then Thou commanded a fair light to come forth of Thy treasures so that Thy work might appear.

25.     And on the second day Thou made the spirit of the firmament and commanded it to part asunder, to make division between the waters, that one part might go up and the other remain beneath.

26.     Upon the third day Thou commanded the waters that they be gathered in the seventh part of the earth.  Six parts did Thou dry up and kept them to the intend that some being planted of God and tilled, might serve Thee.

27.     For as soon as Thy word went forth, the work was made.  For immediately there were great and innumerable fruits, and many divers pleasures for the taste, and flowers of unchangeable colors, and odors of wonderful smell.  This was done the third day.

28.     On the fourth day Thou commanded that the sun should shine, and the moon to give her light, and the stars should be in order, and Thou gave them a charge to do service to the man, which was to be made.

29.     On the fifth day Thou said unto the seventh part where the waters were gathered, that it should bring forth-living creatures birds and fishes.  And so it came to pass, for the dumb and lifeless water brought forth-living things at the commandment of God, so that all people might praise Thy wondrous works.

30.     Then Thou ordained two living creatures, one which Thou called Behemoth the other Leviathan, and separated one from the other, for the seventh part, namely where the water was gathered, might not hold them both.

31.     To Behemoth Thou gave one part, that which was dried up on the third day that he should dwell in these parts wherein there are a thousand hills.  But to Leviathan Thou gave the seventh part, namely the moist, and has kept him to be devoured of whom Thou will and when.

32.     On the sixth day Thou commanded the earth that it bring forth beast before Thee, cattle and creeping things.  And after these Adam also whom Thou made lord of all Thy creatures.

33.     All this have I spoken before Thee Lord because Thou made the world for our sakes.  And as for the other people, which also came of Adam, Thou has said that they are nothing but like spit, and likened the abundance of them to a drop that falls from a vessel.

34.     And now O Lord behold, these heathen, which have always been reputed as nothing, have begun to be lords over us, and to devour us.  But we Thy people whom Thou called Thy firstborn, Thy only begotten, and Thy fervent lover are given into their hands.

35.     If the world now be made for our sakes, why do we not as yet possess an inheritance with the world?  How long shall this endure?

  Chapter 7

The entrances

1.     When I had made an end of speaking these words there was sent to me the angel who had been sent to me the nights before.  And he said to me: "Up Esdras, and hear the words which I have come to tell you."  And I replied, "Speak on my God".

2.     Then he said: "The sea is set in a wide place that it might be deep and great, but its entrance is narrow like a river.  Who then can go into the sea to look upon it and rule it if he does not pass through the narrow?  For how else can he come into the broad?

3.  Or another example: Like a city build and set upon a broad field full of good things.  The entrance thereto is however narrow and set in a dangerous place, which is like as were there fire on the right and deep water on the left with only one pass between them so small that only one person at the time can pass.

4.  If this city now were given to a man for an inheritance, how shall he receive his inheritance if he does not pass the danger set before him?"

5.  And I said, "It is so Lord".  Then He said: "Even so is Israel portion, because for their sake made I the world.  And when Adam transgressed My statutes, then was decreed what now is done.

6.  Then were the entrances of this world made narrow, full of sorrow and travail, the days few and evil, full of perils and painful.  For the entrances of the elder world were wide and sure and brought immortal fruit.

7.  If then they that live do not labor to enter by these straits, they cannot receive that which is laid up for them.

8.  Why thus are you so moved and upset yourself, knowing that you are but a corruptible man and mortal?  Why have you not duly considered the thing to come rather than only what is presently?"

9.  Then I answered: "O Lord who bears rule, Thou has ordained in Thy law that the righteous should inheret these things, but that the ungodly should perish.  Still the righteous must suffer strait things while they hope for the wide, while they that do wickedly also suffer the strait things yet shall not see the wide."

10.  And He said: "There is no judge above God, and none with understanding above the Highest.  For there are many that perish in this life because they despise the law of God, which is set before them.

11.  For God strictly commanded them what they must do to live when they came, and what they must do to avoid punishment.  But they were not obedient unto Him, but spoke against Him, and imagined vain things.

12.  They deceived themselves by their wicked deeds, and said of the Most High that He is not, and knew not His ways but despised His law, and denied His covenants.  They have not been faithful in His statutes, nor did they perform His works.

  The promise of salvation

13.  Therefore Esdras, for the empty are empty things, and for the full are full things.  Behold, the time shall come that the "Bride" shall appear.

14.  And She coming forth, who for the moment is withdrawn from the earth, shall be seen.  And whoever is delivered from the evils of which it was spoken shall see My wonders.

15.  For My Son, the Messiah, shall be revealed with those that be with Him.  And they that are in that time within four hundred years shall rejoice.  After that, My Son, the Messiah, shall die, and all men that have life.

16.  And the world shall be turned into the old silence for seven days as in the former judgment, so that no man shall remain.

17.  Then after these seven days, the world that yet does not awaken, shall be raised up, and whatever is corrupt shall die.  And the earth shall restore those that are asleep in her, and the dust those that are in silence.  And the secret places shall deliver those souls that were committed unto them.

18.  And the Most High shall appear upon the seat of judgment, and misery shall pass away, and long suffering shall be ended.

19.  My judgment alone shall remain, truth shall stand, and faith shall wax strong, and their works follow them.  Their reward shall be shown, good deeds shall be of force, and wicked deeds shall not bear rule.

20.  Then shall the place of torment appear, and opposite thereto the place of rest.  The furnace of hell shall be revealed, and opposite thereto the delight of paradise.

21.  Then the Most High will say to the nations that have been raised; "Look and see what you have denied, and whom you would not serve, whose commandments you despised.

22.  Look to the one side and the other, here delight and rest, but there fire and torments.  Thus will He speak on the day of judgment.

23.  A day that has no sun, moon, or stars, nor clouds or thunder or lightning, wind, rain, mist, or darkness, nor evening, morning, summer, spring, or heat.

24.  Nor winter, frost, cold, hail, rain, or dew, nor noon, night, or dawn.  Nor shining brightness or light, but only the splendor of the glory of the Most High, by which everyone shall behold what has been determined for them.  For it will last for about a week of years.

25.  This is My judgment, and its prescribed order.  And to you alone have I shown these things."

  Esdras reasons again

26.  Then I said: "Abraham prayed for the Sodomites and Moses for the fathers that sinned in the wilderness.  And Jesus (Joshua) after him, for Israel in the time of Achan.  And Samuel and David for the destruction.

27.  And Solomon for them that should come to the sanctuary, and Elias (Elijah) for those that received rain, and for the dead that they might live.  And Ezechias (Ezekiel) for the people in the time of Sannecherib, and many for many.

28.  Even so, now seeing corruption has grown up and wickedness increased, the righteous having prayed for the ungodly, wherefore shall it not now be so also?"

29.  And he answered: "This present life is not where much glory abides, therefore did they pray for the weak, but the day of doom shall be the end of this time, and the beginning of immortality to come.

30.  In it corruption will be past, intemperance be at an end, infidelity cut off, righteousness grow, and truth will spring up.  Then shall no man be able to save him that is destroyed, nor to oppress him that has gotten the victory."

31.  Then I said: "This is my first and last word; that it had been better not to have given the earth unto Adam, or else to have restrained him from sinning.  For what profit is it for men in this present time to live in heaviness and after death look for punishment?

32.  O Adam what have you done, for though it was you who sinned, you are not fallen alone, but we all come from you.  For what profit is it to us if there be promised an immortal time, when we have done the works that bring death?  Or that the hope of everlasting is promised - while we being wicked, are made vain?

33.  And that dwellings of health and safety are laid up for us, but we have lived wickedly?  Or that the glory of the Most High defended them, which led a weary life, while we have walked in the most wicked ways of all?

34.  Or that there be shown a paradise whose fruit endures forever wherein is security and medicine, since we - shall not enter therein anyway?

35.  Or that the faces of those, which practiced abstinence, shall shine above the stars, while our faces shall be blacker than darkness?  For while we lived and committed iniquity, we did not consider that after death we shall begin to suffer for it."

36.  Then said He to me: "This is the condition of the battle which man that is born upon the earth shall fight, that if he be overcome, he then shall suffer as you have said, but if he gets the victory, he shall receive the things of which you spoke.

37.  For this is the life, which Moses spoke to the people while he lived saying:  "Chose you life, so you may live".  But they believed him not, nor the prophets after him, nor even Me who spoke to them that there should not be such pain for their destruction, as there will be joy over them that are persuaded to salvation."

38.  And I said, "I know Lord that the Most High is called merciful in that He has mercy upon them that are to come into the world, and upon those also that turn to His law.  And that He is patient and long suffering with those that have sinned as His creatures.

39.  And that He is bountiful, for He is ready to give where needed, and that He is of great mercy for He multiplies more and more mercies to those that are present, as well as are past, and those yet to come.

40.  For if He shall not multiply His mercies, the world would not continue with them that inherit it.  And He pardons, for if He did not do so of His goodness, that they which have committed iniquities might be eased of them, then the ten thousand part of men would not remain living.

41.  And being Judge, if He should not forgive them that are cursed with His word, and remove the multitude of contentions, then there would be very few left in even an innumerable multitude.

 Chapter 8

  State of Judgment

1.  And I said: "If I have found favor in Thy sight my Lord show Thy servant if after death, when everyone yields up his soul, it will be kept at rest until the time that Thou renew creation, or if it shall be tormented at once."

2.  He answered: "This also I will show you, but do not associate with them that scorn, nor number yourself among them that shall be tormented, for you have a treasure stored with the Most High which will be shown to you at the last times.

3.  Concerning death now, it is this: When the decree has gone forth from the Most High that a man shall die, when his spirit leaves his body to return again to Him who gave it, it then first of all adores the glory of the Most High.

4.  Then, if it be one who has shown scorn, not having kept the way of the Most High, having despised Him, and hated those who feared God, such shall not enter into habitations, but shall wander in torments ever grieving and sad.

5.  And this is in seven ways.  First: because they have scorned the law of God.  Second, because they cannot longer gain life through repentance. Third, they will behold the reward stored for those did trust the covenants of God.

6.  Fourth, they shall consider the torments laid up for themselves in the last end.  Fifth, they will see how the habitations of the others is in profound peace guarded by angels.

7.  Sixth, they will behold how some will pass over into torment.  And the seventh which is more painful than all the before' they shall utterly waste away in confusion and be consumed with shame.

8.  For they shall wither with fear at seeing the glory of the Most High before whom they sinned while they were alive, and before whom they are to be judged at the last judgment.

But as for those who kept the way of the Most High, when they shall be separated from their mortal body, those who when they were  alive labored to keep the way of the Most High, and withstood danger every hour so they might perfectly keep the law of the giver of law; this shall be for them:

9.  With great joy they shall behold the glory of Him who receives them, for their rest shall be in seven orders.  First; because they strove with great effort to overcome the evil thought which was formed with them, that it might not lead them astray from life into death.

10.  Second, they beheld the perplexity in which the souls of the ungodly wander and the punishment that awaits them.  Third, they beheld the testimony, which He that formed them, bears concerning them, that while they were alive they kept the law, which was given them in trust.

11.  Fourth; they understand the rest, which they now enjoy, being gathered into their chambers in profound peace and guarded by angels, and the glory that awaits them in the last days.

12.  Fifth; they rejoice that now they have escaped what is mortal, and that they shall inherit what is to come, and also because they behold the straits and the toil from which they have been delivered, and the spacious liberty which they are to receive and enjoy in immortality.

13.  Sixth; it is shown to them how their face is to shine like the sun, and how they are to be made like the light of the stars, being incorruptible from then on.

14.  And the seventh order which is greater than all the before, is that they shall rejoice with boldness, and be confident without confusion, and be glad without fear.

15.  For they hasted to behold the face of Him whom they served in life, and from whom they were to receive their reward when glorified.  This is the order of the souls of the righteous as announced."

16.  And I said: "Will time be given to the souls after they have been separated from their bodies to see what Thou has declared me?"

17.  And he said: "They shall have freedom for seven days, so that during these days they may see the things of which you have been told, and afterwards they shall be gathered in their habitations."

18.  And I said, "If I have found favor in Thy sight, show Thy servant also if on the day of judgment the righteous will be able to intercede for the ungodly.  To entreat the Most High for them, fathers for sons, or sons for parents, brothers for brothers, for relatives, or friends most dear to them."

19.  He answered and said; "Since you have found favor in my sight, I will show you this also.  The day of judgment is decisive, and shows to all the seal of truth.

20.  For just as now a father does not sent his son, or a son his father, or a master his servant, or a friend his dearest friend to be ill.  Or to sleep or eat, or to be healed in his stead, so no one shall pray for another on that day.

21.  Neither shall anyone lay a burden on another, for everyone shall then bear his own righteousness or unrighteousness."

   Chapter 9

  Esdras prays for Israel

1.  And further He said to me:  "The Most High has made this world for many but the world to come for few.  I will tell you a similitude Esdras, When you ask the earth, she will tell you that she gives much material of which vessels may be made.

2.  But that of which gold may be found she gives little.  So also is the course of this present world, there are many created, but few shall be saved."

3.  I answered and said: "Swallow then down understanding O my soul and comprehend wisdom, for you agreed to give ear.  Not of our own will did we come into the world, and against our own will we depart, and our time given is only short.

4.  O Lord if Thou does not suffer Thy servant that we may pray before Thee, and give us see into our hearts, and cultivate our understanding so that fruit may come of it, how then shall any man that is corrupt live?

5.  For Thou art single and we all are as Thou has said, the workmanship of Thy hand.  For when the body is fashioned in the mother's womb, Thou give it members.

6.  Thy creature is preserved in fire and water, and Thy workmanship endures for nine months within that wherein it is created, and both that which keeps it, and that is kept are preserved.

7.  And the time having come for the mother to deliver the thing that grew in her, Thou commands from the body, out of the breast, that milk be given so that the thing made may be nourished for a time until Thou dispose of it to Thy mercy.

8.  Then Thou do bring it up with Thy righteousness, and nurture it in Thy law and reforming it with Thy judgments.  And Thou shall mortify it as Thy creature, and raise it as Thy work.

9.  If Thou then shall destroy that which Thou did fashion with so much care, it is Thy work yes, but why then was it made?  I then O Lord will not speak concerning man in general, for Thou knows best.

10.  But I will speak in regard to Thy people, for whose sake I grieve, for Thy inheritance for whose cause I mourn, for Israel for whom I am heavy, for Jacob for whose sake I am troubled.

11.  I will therefore begin to pray before Thee, for myself and for them.  For I behold the fall of all of us who dwell in the land, and I have heard of the swiftness of the judge which is to come.  Hear therefore my voice, and understand my words that I may speak before Thee."

  Esdras prays for compassion

12.  This is the beginning of the words of Esdras before he was taken away, and I said:

13.  O Lord who dwells in everlasting, who beholds from above the things in heaven and in the air, whose throne is inestimable, whose glory may not be comprehended, before whom the host of angels stand with trembling.

14.  Whose service is conversant in wind and fire, whose word is true and His precepts constant whose commandment is strong, and ordinances fearful, whose look dries up the depths, and whose indignation makes the fountains to melt away of which truth is witness.

15.  O hear the prayer of Thy servant, and give ear to the petition of Thy creature, for while I live, I will speak, and as long as I have understanding I will answer.

16.  Look not upon the sins of Thy people, but upon them that serve Thee in truth.  Regard not the wicked inventions of the heathen, but the desire of those that in affliction keep Thy testimonies.

17.  Think not upon those who have walked wickedly before Thee, but remember them who according to Thy will have known Thy fear.  Let it not be Thy will to destroy them that have lived like beasts, but to look upon them that have clearly taught Thy law.

18.  Take no indignation at them, which are deemed worse than beasts, but love them that always put their trust in Thy righteousness and glory, for our fathers and we abhor such diseases, and because we are sinners, Thou shall be called merciful.

19.  For if Thou desire to have mercy on us, Thou shall be called merciful, namely, to us who have no works of righteousness.  For the just, those who have many good works in store with Thee, they shall of their own good deeds receive reward.

20.  For what is man that Thou should take displeasure at him?  Or a corruptible generation that Thou should be so bitter towards them?  For in truth there is no man born among them that have not dealt wickedly.  There is none, which has not done amiss.

21.  For in this O Lord, Thy righteousness and Thy goodness shall be declared, if Thou were merciful to them that have no confidence of good works.

22.  Then answered he me; "Some things you have spoken rightly, and it shall be according to your word.  For indeed I will not think on the disposition of them that have sinned before death, before judgment, before destruction.

23.  But I will rejoice over the disposition of the righteous, and I will also remember their pilgrimage, and the salvation, and the reward that they shall have.

24.  As you have spoken, so it shall come to pass, for just as the farmer sows much seed upon the ground, and plants many trees, and yet the thing sown good in its season does not come up, nor will all that is planted take root.  Even so it is with them that are sown in the world, they shall not all be saved."

25.  I answered then and said: "If I have found grace, allow me to speak.  For like as the farmers seed perishes if it does not come up, receiving not Thy rain in due season, or if there be too much rain whereby it is corrupted, so man who was formed by Thy hand and called in Thy image is surely to perish.

26.  But wilt Thou liken him thus, like the farmers seed those for whose sake Thou made all things?  Be not angry with us O Lord, but spare Thy people, and have mercy on Thy inheritance, for Thou art merciful unto Thy creature."

27.  He then answered: "Things present are for the present, and things to come for such as are to come.  For you come far short that you should be able to love My creature more than I.  And I have oftentimes drawn near to you, and unto it, but never to the unrighteous.

28.  In this also you are marvelous before the Most High, in that you have humbled yourself as it becomes you, and you have not judged yourself worthy to be much glorified among the righteous.

29.  For many great miseries shall be done to those that shall dwell in the world in the latter times, because they have walked in great pride.  But as for you, comprehend your lot, and seek the glory, which such as are like you shall inherit.

30.  For to you paradise is opened, the tree of life is planted, the coming time prepared, salvation made ready, a city is built, and rest is allowed, yes perfect goodness and wisdom.

31.  The root of evil is sealed upon you, weakness and the moth is hid from you, and corruption is fled into hell to be forgotten, sorrows are passed, and in the end the treasures of immortality will be shown.

32.  Ask therefore no more questions concerning the multitude of them that perish, for while they had liberty, they despised the Most High, and thought scorn of his law, and forsook his ways.

33.  Moreover, they trod down his righteous, and said in their heart that there is no God, yes and that while they knew that they must die.

34.  But just as the previous things mentioned should receive you, so thirst and pain are prepared for them.  For it was not His will that man should come to nothing.

35.  But those, which He created, defiled the name of Him that made them, and were ungrateful unto Him who prepared life for them, therefore is My judgment now at hand.  These things I have not shown to all men, but to you, and a few like you.

36.  Then I answered; "behold O Lord, Thou has shown me the multitude of the wonders which Thou wilt begin to do in the last times, but at what specific time, Thou has not shown me."

 Chapter 10

Times of the end

1.  He then answered: "Measure the time diligently, and when you shall see parts being past, as I said to you, then you shall understand that it is indeed the very time wherein the Highest will begin to visit the world which He made.

2.  When therefore you shall see earthquakes and uproars of people in the world, then you shall well understand that the Lord spoke of these things from earlier days, even from the beginning.

3.  For just as all things in the world have a hidden beginning, and an open end, so the times of the Highest have plain beginnings in wonders and powerful works, and ending in effects and signs.

4.  And everyone that shall be saved, who by his deeds and by faith shall be able to escape having believed, they shall be preserved from the evils as mentioned, and shall see My salvation in My land within My borders.  For I have sanctified them for Me from the beginning.

5.  Then shall they who now have abused My ways, and which have cast them away spitefully, be in pitiful shape and dwell in torments.

6.  For such as in their life received benefits, and yet not knew Me, and that loathe My law, while they were at liberty, when as yet there was repentance open to them, they understood it not, but despised it.  The same then must know it by pain after death.

7.  You therefore, be not curious how or when the ungodly shall be punished, but inquire how the righteous, who's the world is, and for whom it was created, shall be saved."

8.  Then I answered; "I have said before, and speak so now, and will so hereafter, that there are many more that perish than those which shall be saved, just as the wave is greater than the drop".

9.  And He answered me; "As the field is, so also is the seed, as the flower is, so also are its colors, such as the workman is, so also is his work, and as the farmer himself is - so also is his farming.

10.  For there was an age when I was preparing for those who do now exist, when the world was not yet made, and no one spoke against Me then, for no one existed.

11.  But now those who have been created in this world are corrupted by a perpetual seed, and by an unsearchable law made themselves contrary to their nature.

12.  So I considered the world, and behold, it was in perils because of the devices that were coming into it.  And I saw and spared it greatly, and kept Me a grape of the cluster, and a plant of a great people.

13.  Let the multitude who were born in vain then perish, but let My grape be kept, and My plant, because with much labor have I perfected them.

The law and its vessel

14.  If then you will wait yet seven more days, and not fast during them, but go into the field of flowers where no house has been built.  And you eat only of the flowers of the field, tasting no meat, and drinking no wine, but flowers only, and pray continually unto the Highest, and then I will come and talk with you."

15.  So I went into the field, which is called Ardath, as He commanded me, where I sat among the flowers, and ate of the herbs of the field, and the meat thereof sustained me.

16.  After the seven days then I sat upon the grass and my heart was vexed in me as before, and I opened my mouth and began to speak before the Most High and said:

17.  "O Lord, Thou who shows Thyself unto us, and who was shown unto our fathers in the wilderness, in a place where no man treads, a barren place, when they came out of Egypt.

18.  And Thou spoke saying; Hear Me O Israel, and mark My words you seed of Jacob.  For behold, I sow my law in you, and it shall bring forth fruit in you, and you shall be honored in it forever.

19.  But our fathers who received the law, kept it not, and did not observe Thy ordinances.  And although the fruit of Thy law did not perish, nor could I t since it was Thine, yet they that received it perished, because they kept not the thing that was sown in them.

20.  For is it not a rule, when the ground receives seed, or the sea a ship, or any vessel meat or drink, that when the receiver perishes, so also that which received it does not remain with it?

21.  But with us it is not so, for we that received the law perish, yet the law remains in force.

22.  When I spoke thus in my heart, I looked up and on my right I saw a woman mourning and weeping with a loud voice being much grieved, her clothe rent, and with ashes on her head.

23.  I then dismissed the thoughts in which I was, and turning to her said "Why are you weeping, so grieved in your mind?"

24.  And she said; "Sir, leave me be that I may bewail myself and add to my sorrow, for I am sore vexed in my mind, and brought very low".

25.  And I said; "What ails you?  Tell me."  She then said; "I your servant have been barren having no child though I had a husband thirty years.

26.  And in those thirty years I made my prayer day and night to the Highest, and so after thirty years God heard his handmaid, and looking upon my misery, and considering my trouble, gave me a son.

27.  And I was overjoyed with him and so was my husband and my neighbors and we gave great honor to the Lord Almighty, and I nourished him with great travail.

28.  So when he grew up, and the time came for him, to have a wife, I made a wedding feast, and it came to pass that when my son had entered into his wedding chamber that he fell down and died.

29.  And we overthrew the lights and all the neighbors rose up to comfort me, but I kept my peace until the second night.

30.  When they then had left off comforting me, to the end that I might have some peace, I arose that night and fleeing I came here in this field as you see me.

31.  And now I propose not to return to this city, but to stay here neither eating nor drinking, but only to cry till I die."

  Chapter 11

  Esdras censures the woman

1.  Then spoke I in anger to her saying; "You foolish woman have you not seen our mourning, what has happen to us, how Zion our mother is full of trouble and greatly humbled, mourning very sorrowfully?

2.  We all mourn and are sad, for we are all in heaviness while you grieve for just one son?  Ask now the earth, and she will tell you that it is she who ought to mourn for the fall of so many that are born upon her.

3.  For we all come out of her, and still others will come out of her, but almost all walk into destruction, a whole multitude is to perish more than she that has lost such a great multitude?

4.  Or if you who have l lost just one will say to me; my lamentations are not like that of the earth because I have lost the fruit of my womb which I brought forth with pain, and that this is not so with the earth since her multitude go as they come.

5.  Then I say to you; Like as you have brought forth with labor, so also the earth her fruit, namely man, even from the beginning of her Creator, keep therefore your sorrow to yourself, and bear with good courage that which has befallen you.

6.  For if you shall acknowledge the determination of God to be just, in time you shall receive both your son and be commended among women, go therefore to the city and to your husband."

7.  And she said; "This I will not do, I will not go in the city, but die here".  So I spoke to her further saying;

8.  "Do not so, but take my counsel, for how many are the adversities of Zion?  Be therefore comforted in the sorrows of Jerusalem.

9.  For you see how our sanctuary is laid waste, the altar broken down, our temple destroyed, our psaltery laid to the ground, our song put to silence.

10.  Our rejoicing is at an end, the light of our candlestick is put out, the ark of our covenant is spoiled, our holy things are defiled, and the Name after which we are called, is profaned.

11.  Our children are put to shame, our priest burned, our Levites in captivity, our virgins defiled, our wives ravished, our righteous ones are carried away, our little ones destroyed, and our young men are brought in bondage.

12.  And also our strong men are become weak, and worst of all, the seal of Zion has lost her honor, for she is delivered into the hands of those that hate us.

13.  Therefore shake off your great heaviness and put away the multitude of your sorrow, that the Mighty may again be merciful to you, and He shall give you rest, and ease your labors."

  The parable of the woman explained

14.  And it came to pass while I spoke thus with her, suddenly her face shone exceedingly and her countenance glistened, so that I became afraid of her and mused what this might be.

15.  And suddenly she made a great fearful cry so that the earth shook at the noise of her, and I looked and behold, the woman was no more, but there appeared a city fully build upon a large foundation.

16.  Then I became afraid and cried with a loud voice saying; "Where is Uriel, the angel who came to me at first?  For because of him have I fallen in bewilderment, and is my aim failing, and my prayer a reproach."

17.  And as I was speaking these words, he came to me and looked upon me, and I was as one dead, with my senses from me.  And he took me by the right hand and comforted me setting me upon my feet.

18.  And he said; "What is the matter with you, why are you so upset, and why is your understanding so troubled in the thoughts of your heart?"

19.  And I said, "Because you have forsaken me, and yet I did according to your word, I went into the field, and I saw, and still see what I am unable to explain".

20.  And he said, "Stand up like a man, and I will instruct you.  And I said; Speak my lord, only do not forsake me lest I die frustrated of my hope, for I have seen what I do not comprehend, and heard what I do not understand.

21.  Or is my mind deceived and my soul dreaming?  Now therefore I entreat you to give your servant an explanation to this vision."

22.  And he answered, "Listen to me, and I will inform you and tell you about the things, which you fear, for the Most High will reveal many secrets to you.

23.  For He has seen your righteous conduct, that you have sorrowed continually for your people, and mourned greatly over Zion.  This therefore is the meaning of the vision, which you have seen.

24.  You saw a woman mourning, and you began to console her, but now you see her likeness no more but instead you beheld an established city.  And as for her telling you about the misfortune of her son, this is the interpretation.

25.  The woman whom you saw, who you now behold as an established city, is Zion, and her telling you she was barren for thirty years, these are the thirty years wherein no offering was made in her.

26.  For after these thirty years Solomon built the city and offered offerings, then it was that the barren woman bore a son.

27.  And as for telling you that she brought him up with much care, this was the period of residence in Jerusalem.

28.  And where she said to you, when my son entered into his wedding chamber he died, this was the destruction that came upon Jerusalem.

29.  In a likeness thus you saw how she mourned for her son, and you began to console her, and this will be made clear to you.

30.  For now the Most High seeing how you are sincerely grieved, and profoundly distressed for her, He has shown you the brightness of her glory, and the loveliness of her beauty.

31.  It was therefore that I bade you to remain in the field where no house had been build, for I knew that the Most High would reveal these things to you.

32.  Therefore also did I tell you to go into a field where there was no foundation of any building, for in the place where the Highest begins to show His City; there no man's building is able to stand.

33.  Do not therefore be afraid, and let not your heart be terrified, but go in and see the splendor and vastness of the building for as much as your eyes can perceive

34.  Afterwards you will hear as much as your ears can hear, for you are more blessed than many, and you have been called by the Most High as but few have been.

35.  Only remain yet this night and the next, and the Most High will show you visions of things that He will do to those that dwell upon the earth in the last days."

36.  So I slept that night and the following, as he commanded me.

Chapter 12

The vision of the eagle

1.  On the second night I had a dream, and behold there arose up from the sea an eagle, which had twelve feathered wings and three heads.

2.  And I beheld how it spread its wings over all the earth, and how all the winds of heaven blew upon it, and the clouds were gathered unto him.

3.  And I beheld that from among her feathers grew contrary feathers, which became little and small, while her heads were at rest, with the head in the middle larger than the others, but it rested with the rest of them.

4.  And I beheld how the eagle flew with her wings to reign over the earth, and them that dwell therein, and I beheld that all things under heaven were subject to her, and no man spoke against her, no not one creature upon the earth.

5.  And I beheld the eagle rising upon her talons and speaking to her feathers saying; Do not all watch at once, but let everyone sleep in his own place and watch by course, but let the heads be preserved for the last.

6.  And I saw that the voice did not come from the heads, but from the midst of her body, and I numbered her contrary feathers, there were eight of them.

7.  And on the right, as I beheld, there arose one feather and reigned over all the earth, and while it reigned it came to an end, and the place thereof appeared no more.

8.  And the following stood up and reigned, and continued to reign a long time, and having reigned it also came to its end, and disappeared as the first.

9.  Then a voice sounded saying; Hear you who have ruled the earth all this time, I announce this to you before you disappear, that after you no-one shall rule as long as you, or even to the half thereof.

10.  Then also the third reigned as the others, and appeared no more, and so it went with all the residue one after the other, and appeared no more.

11.  Then I beheld in process of time, the feathers on the right side stood up that they might rule also, and some ruled, but in a little while they were no more, for some were set-up but did not rule.

12.  After this I looked and the twelve feathered wings appeared no more, nor the two little feathers, and there being no more upon the body of the eagle but the three heads at rest and six little wings.

13.  Then I saw that two little wings divided themselves from the six and remained on the head that was upon the right side, the four others continuing in their place.

14.  And these also thought to set themselves up and have the rule, and one was set-up, but shortly it appeared no more, and the second was even faster away than the first.

15.  And I beheld how the two that remained also thought in themselves to reign, and when they so thought, one of the heads at rest awakened, namely; the one in the middle, which was greater than the other two.

16.  And I saw that the other two heads were joined with it, and this head turned with those joined to it, and ate up the two little under wings that would have reigned.

17.  But this head put the whole earth in fear, and bore rule over all those that dwell upon the earth with much oppression and it had the governance of the world more than all the wings that had been.

18.  After this I saw that the head in the middle suddenly appeared no more just as the wings, the two heads only remaining, which also in like manner ruled upon the earth and over them that dwell therein.

19.  Then I saw the head on the right side that it devoured the one upon the left, and I heard a voice which said to me; "Look before you and consider the thing that you see.  

The Lion of the Lord

20.  And I beheld one like a Lion aroused up from the forest, and I saw that he sent out a man's voice to the eagle and said; "Listen you eagle, I will speak with you; the Most High says thus unto you;

21.  “Are not you the one that remains of the four beasts that I made to reign in My world that through them the end of their time might come?

22.  For you the fourth, have come and overcome all the beasts that were before you, and you had power over the whole world with much terror, and over the whole compass of the earth with much oppression, all that time you have dealt upon the earth with deceit.

23.  You have not judged the earth with truth, but you have afflicted the meek, and hurt the peaceable you have loved liars, and destroyed the dwellings of them that brought forth fruit, and you have cast down the walls of them that did you no harm.

24.  Therefore now, your insolence has come up to the Highest, and your pride to the Mighty One, the Highest has looked upon your proud times, and behold they are ended, and your abominations are fulfilled.

25. Therefore, appear no more you eagle, nor you're horrible wings, nor your wicked feathers, nor your malicious heads, nor your hurtful claws, nor all your vain body.  So that the earth may be refreshed and return, being delivered of your violence, and that she may hope for the judgment and mercy of Him who made her."

26.  And it came to pass when the Lion spoke these words to the eagle, that I saw the head that had remained and the wings.  And they appeared no more, except the two that had gone under the head at the right remained, which also arose to set themselves up to reign.

27.  But their kingdom was brief and full of uproar, and I looked and they also appeared no more, and the whole body of the eagle was burned so that the whole earth was in great fear.

28.  Then I awoke out of the trance of my mind and from great fear, and I said in myself; This is what you have done to yourself in searching out the ways of the Most High.

29.  I am weary in my mind, weak in spirit, and there is little strength in me for the fear wherewith I was frightened this night, so now I will entreat the Highest if He will comfort me.

  Chapter 13

The vision explained

1.  And I said; "O Lord who bears rule, if I have found favor in Thy sight, and if I am justified before Thee with many others, then comfort me and show Thy servant the interpretation and plain difference of this fearful vision, that Thou may fully comfort my soul.  For Thou has judged me worthy to show me the last times."

2.  And He said to me; "This is the interpretation of the vision.  The eagle, which you saw, rising from the sea, is the fourth kingdom, which your brother Daniel saw in his vision, but it was not explained to him, therefore now I declare it to you.

3.  Behold, the days will come that there shall rise up a kingdom on the earth which shall be feared above all the kingdoms that were before it.  In it twelve kings shall reign one after the other, of which the second shall have more time than any.

4.  This is what the twelve wings signify, and as for the voice which you heard that came not from the heads but from the midst of the body, this is the interpretation

5.  After the time of that kingdom there shall arise great striving and it shall be in danger of falling, it shall however not then fall, but be restored as to its beginning.

6.  And where you saw the eight small under wings, this is the interpretation; Eight kings shall arise in it whose times shall be short and their year's swift.

7.  Two of them shall perish in the middle of the approaching time, while the four will be kept until their time approaches, of which two will be kept until the very end.

8.  And the three heads, this is the interpretation.  In the last days the Most High shall raise up three kingdoms, and renew many things therein, and they shall have the dominion of the earth, and of those that dwell therein, with much oppression above all that were before them.

9.  Therefore also are they called the heads of the eagle, for these are they that shall accomplish his wickedness, and bring his end to a finish.

10.  And where you saw that the great head appeared no more, it signifies that one shall die upon its bed, and with pain, for the two that remain shall be slain with the sword.

11.  For the sword of one shall devour the other, but afterwards he himself shall fall by the sword.

12.  And where you saw the two under wings passing over to the head on the right side, it signifies that these are they whom the Lord has kept for the very end, this is the small kingdom full of trouble, just as you have seen.

The Lion explained

13.  And the Lion whom you saw rising out of the forest, and roaring and speaking to the eagle, and rebuking her for her unrighteousness with all the words which you heard;

14.  This is the anointed, which the Highest has kept for them and for their wickedness unto the end.  He shall reprove them, and upbraid them with their cruelty.

15.  For he shall set them before him alive in judgment, and shall rebuke them, and correct them.  But the rest of My people, those who have been preserved upon My borders, these he shall deliver with mercy, and he shall make them joyful until the day of judgment.

16.  This is the dream that you saw, and these are the interpretations, you only have been meet to know this secret of the Highest.

17.  Write therefore these things that you have seen in a book, and hide them, and teach them to the wise of the people whose heart may comprehend and keep these secrets.

18.  But as for yourself, wait here yet seven more days that it may be shown to you whatsoever it pleases the Highest to declare to you."  And with that, he went away.

  The people anxious over Esdras

19.  And it came to pass when all the people saw that the seven days were past, and I did not come again into the city, they all gathered together from the least to the greatest, and came to me saying;

20.  "In what have we offended you, what evil have we done against you that you forsake us, and sit here in this place?  For of all the prophets you alone are left unto us as a cluster of the vintage and as a candle in a dark place and as a haven, or a ship saved from the tempest.

21.  Are not the evil which have come upon us sufficient, for if you forsake us, it would have been better for us to have been burned in the midst of Zion, for we are no better than they who died there."  So they wept with a loud voice.

22.  And I answered them; "Be of good comfort O Israel, and be not sorrowful you house of Jacob, for God has you in remembrance, the Mighty One has not forgotten you in your temptation.

23.  Nor have I forsaken you, nor am I departed from you, but I came to this place to pray for the desolation of Zion, that I might seek mercy for the low estate of your sanctuary.

24.  Go then every man his way home, and after these days I will come to you."  So the people went their way into the city as I commanded them.

25.  But I remained in the field seven days as the angel had commanded me, and ate only of flowers of the field, having my meat of the herbs.

  Chapter 14

  The Lord from the sea

1.  And it came to pass after seven days that by night I dreamed, and lo there arose a wind from the sea, stirring up all the waves thereof.

2.  And I beheld, a man rising up from the sea, and when He turned his face to look all things trembled that were seen under Him.

3.  And whenever His voice went out of His mouth, they all burned who heard His voice, just as the earth when consumed by fire.

4.  After this, I beheld a great multitude of men out of number gathered together from the four winds of the heavens to subdue the man that had come from the sea.

5.  And I saw how He had carved for himself a great mountain, and flew upon it.  And I attempted to see the region or the place whereof the hill was carved, but I was unable.

6.  After this I beheld how these, which were gathered together to subdue Him, were very much afraid yet dared to fight.  And He seeing the onrush of the multitude coming to Him, He lifted up neither his hand nor a sword, nor any instrument of war.

7.  But I saw that He sent out of His mouth only as were it a stream of fire.  And from His lips a flaming breath, and of His tongue He cast out a tempest of sparks.

8.  And they were all mixed together, the blast of fire, the flaming breath, and the great tempest, and they fell with violence upon the multitude, which had come prepared to fight.

9.  And it consumed everyone, so that in an instant there was nothing to be perceived of an innumerable multitude, but dust and smell of smoke.  And seeing this I became afraid.

10.  Afterwards, I saw the same man come down from the mountain and call unto himself another peaceable multitude, and many people came unto Him.

11.  Some of these were glad, some sorry, some bound, and again others brought of them that were offered.

Esdras asks for the explanation

12.  Then I awoke for great fear and I said; "Thou has shown Thy servant these wonders from the beginning, and counted me worthy that Thou would receive my prayer.

13.  Show me now the interpretation of this dream, for as I conceive in my understanding, woe be to them that are left in those days, and still more woe to those that are not left, since they know of the joy - but cannot reach it.

14.  Now I understand the things that are laid up for the latter days, what shall happen to those that are left how they shall come into great perils and into many necessities, as the dream declares.

15.  Yet it is better to come into these things and pass with danger, than to pass away as a cloud out of the world, and not to see the things that will happen in the last days."

  Interpretation of the dream

16.  And He answered me; "I will show you the interpretation of the vision, and open to you the things for which you asked, and this is the interpretation.

17.  He who brings the perils at that time will Himself protect those who fall into perils those who have works and faith in the Almighty.

18.  Know this therefore that they that are left are more blessed than those that will be dead.  The meaning of the vision then is this;

19.  The man you saw coming up from the midst of the sea, is He whom the Most High has kept for a long season, who by His own self shall deliver His creature, and He shall direct them that are left.

20.  And where you saw that out of His mouth came a tempest and fire and storm, that He held sword nor any instrument of war, and thus destroyed the whole onrushing multitude that came to subdue Him, this is the interpretation;

21.  Behold, the days come when the Most High will begin to deliver them that are upon the earth, and He shall come to the astonishment of them that dwell upon the earth.

22.  And one shall undertake to fight another, one city against another, one place against another, one people against another, and one realm against another.

23.  At that time when these things come to pass, and the signs which I showed you earlier occur, then, My Son shall be declared whom you saw as a man ascending from the sea.

24.  And when all the people hear His voice, every man in his own land shall leave the battle, which they have against one another, and a great multitude shall be gathered together willing to come, and to overcome Him by fighting.

25.  But He shall stand upon the top of mount Zion, and Zion shall come, and be declared to all men, being prepared and build just as you saw, a hill carved without hands.

26.  And this My Son shall rebuke the wicked inventions of those nations, which for their wicked life are fallen into the tempest.

27.  And He shall bring their evil thoughts to remembrance, and show them the torments wherewith they shall begin to be tormented, which are like a flame, and He shall destroy them without labor, by the law which is like unto fire.

28.  And where you saw that He gathered another peaceable multitude to Himself, those are the ten tribes, which were carried away as prisoners out of their land in the time of Hosea the king.  (2 Kings 17:1-6)

29.  Whom Salmanasar the king of Assyria led captive, and took across the river, so coming into another land.

30.  But they took this counsel among themselves that they would leave the multitude of the heathen, and go forth into a further country where no man ever dwelt, that they might keep their statutes, which they never did keep in their own land.

31.  And they went in by the narrow passage of the Euphrates River, for at that time the Most High performed signs for them, and stopped the channels of the river until they had passed over.

32.  For through that country there was a great distance to go, namely a year and a half, and it is called Arsareth, and there they dwelt until the last times.

33.  And when they shall begin to come, the Highest shall again stay the channels of the river so they may pass through.

34.  Therefore did you see that multitude gathered in peace, and it are also those of your people that are left found within My borders.

35.  When therefore He destroys the multitude of the nations that were gathered against Him, He shall defend the people who remain, and these He will show great wonders then."

36.  Then I said, "O Lord who bears rule, show me why I saw a man coming up from the midst of the sea?"  And He said to me: "Just as you cannot seek out nor know the things that are in the depth of the sea, even so can no man upon earth see My Son, or those that be with Him, except in His day.

37.  This is the interpretation of the dream, which you saw, and you only had been enlightened about this, because you have forsaken your own way and applied diligence to My law, and you looked for it.

38.  You ordered your life in wisdom, and called understanding your mother, therefore have I shown you the treasures of the Highest.

39.  After another three days however I will speak other things to you, to declare you mighty and wondrous things."

40.  Then I went forth into the field giving praise and great thanks to the Most High because of His wonders which He does at His times, and because He governs them to come in their season.  And so I remained there three days.

  Chapter 15

  Esdras commissioned

1.   And it came to pass upon the third day as I sat under an oak, behold, a voice came out from a bush opposite of me and said, "Esdras, Esdras".  And I said; "Here am I Lord."

2.  And I stood upon my feet.  Then said He: "In the bush I manifested Myself to Moses and talked with him when My people served in Egypt.

3.  Then did I sent him and led My people out of Egypt, and brought him upon mount Sinai where I held him with Me for a long season, and told him many wondrous things, and I showed him the secrets of the times and of the end.

4.  And I commanded him saying; these words you shall declare, and these you shall keep secret.  And now I say unto you; lay up in your heart the signs that I have shown you, and the dreams that you have seen and the interpretation, which you have heard.

5.  For you shall be taken away from everything and from henceforth you shall remain with My Son, and with such as are like you until the times are ended.

6.  For the world has lost it youth and the times begin to wax old.  For the world is divided in twelve parts, and nine parts have already past and half of the tenth, and what is left thereof remains.

7.  Therefore set your house in order, and reprove your people, comfort such as are in trouble, and renounce corruption.

8.  Let mortal thoughts go from you, cast away the burdens of man, divest yourself of the weak nature, and set aside the thoughts that are most heavy to you, and make haste to escape from these times.

9.  For yet greater evils than those which you have seen will be done hereafter.

10.  For consider how the world weakens through age, so also shall evils increase upon them that dwell therein.  For truth is fled far away, and falsehood is hard at hand, for now, the vision which you saw, hastens to come."

11.  Then I answered; "Behold Lord, I will go as Thou commanded me and reprove the people which are present, but who shall admonish them that are born afterwards?

12.  For the world is set in darkness, and they that dwell therein are without light, for Thy law is burned wherefore no man knows the things that are done of Thee, or that will be done.

13.  But if I have found grace before Thee, send the Holy Spirit into me, and I shall write all that has been done in the world since the beginning which were written in Thy law.  So that men may find Thy path, and that they which live in the latter days, may live".

14.  And He answered me; "Go your way, gather the people together and say unto them not to look for you for forty days.

15.  But you, prepare yourself many writing tablets, and take with you Sarea, Dabria, Selemia, Ecanus, and Asiel, these five, for they can write swiftly.

16.  And come here, and I shall light a candle of understanding in your heart which shall not be put out until what you are about to write is finished.

17.  And when you have finished, some things you shall make public, and some you shall show secretly to the wise.  Tomorrow at this hour you shall begin to write.

  Esdras speaks to the people

18.  Then I went forth as He commanded and gathered all the people together and said;

19.  "Hear these words O Israel; our fathers at first were strangers in Egypt from where they were delivered and received the law of life, which they did not keep, and which you after them have also transgressed.

20.  Then the land of Zion was parted among you by lot, but your fathers as well as you done unrighteously; not keeping the ways of the Lord commanded you.

21.  And for as much as He is a righteous Judge, He in time took from you the thing which He had given you, and now you are here, and your brothers are further in the interior.

22.  If you then will subdue your understanding and reform your hearts, you shall be kept alive, and after death you shall obtain mercy.

23.  For after death, when we shall live again, the judgment shall come, wherein the names of the righteous shall be manifested, and the works of the ungodly shall be disclosed.

24.  Let no man therefore come unto me now, or look for me for forty days.

    The books written

25.  So I took the five men as He commanded me, and we went into the field, and remained there.

26.  And the next day, behold, a voice called saying; "Esdras, open your mouth and drink what I give you to drink".  I then opened my mouth, and He offered me a cup, which was full of something like water, but the color of it was like fire.

27.  And I took it and drank, and having drunk it my heart poured forth understanding, and wisdom increased within me, for my spirit strengthened my memory, and my mouth was opened and closed no more.

28.  And the Most High gave understanding to the five men, and they wrote the wonderful visions of the night that were told of which they had no knowledge.  And they sat forty days, writing in the daytime, and ate bread at night.

29.  As for me, I spoke in the day, and held not my tongue by night.  In forty days they wrote 94 books.  And it came to pass when the forty days were completed, the Highest spoke saying;

30.  "The first 24 that you have written publish openly that the worthy and the unworthy may read them, but keep the last seventy that you may deliver them only to such as are wise among the people.

31.  For in them is the spring of understanding, and the fountain of wisdom, and the river of knowledge."  And I did so.  

Chapter 16

Vengeance to come to the earth

1.  The Lord says;  "Behold; Speak into the ears of My people the words of this prophecy which I will place in your mouth, and cause them to be written on paper, for they are faithful and true.

2.  Fear not the imaginations against you, and let not the incredibility of them trouble you that speak against you, for all the unbelievers shall die in their unbelief.

3.  Behold says the Lord; I will bring plagues upon the world, the sword, famine, death, and destruction, for wickedness has exceedingly polluted the whole earth, and their hurtful deeds have reached their limit.

4.  Therefore says the Lord, I will no longer be silent concerning their ungodliness, which they impiously commit, nor will I tolerate them in those things in which they wickedly exercise themselves.

5.  Behold the innocent and the righteous blood cries to me, and the souls of the just complain continually. Therefore says the Lord I will surely avenge them, and receive unto Me all the innocent blood from among them.

6.  Behold; my people are led as a flock to the slaughter, I will not now tolerate them to dwell in the land of Egypt.

7.  But I will bring them out with a mighty hand and an uplifted arm, and smite Egypt with plagues like before, and destroy all its land.

8.  Egypt shall mourn, and the foundations of it shall be slain with the plague and punishment that the Lord shall bring upon it.

9.  They that till the ground shall mourn, for their seeds shall fail by the blight, and by hail, and by a terrible tempest.

10.  Woe to the world and those that dwell therein, for the sword and destruction draws near, and one people shall stand up to fight another with swords in their hands.

11.  For there shall be sedition among men, and invading of one another, they shall not regard their kings or their princes, but the course of their actions shall stand in their own power.

12.  A man shall desire to go into a city, but shall not be able to, because of their pride the cities shall be troubled, their houses shall be destroyed and men shall be afraid.

13.  A man shall not have pity upon his neighbor, but shall destroy their houses with the sword, and spoil their goods for the very lack of bread, and for great tribulation.

14.  Behold says the Lord; I will call together all the kings of the earth to reverence Me, those which are from the rising of the sun, from the south, from the east, and Lebanon.

15.  To turn themselves one against another to repay the things that they have done to them.  Just as they do yet this day unto My chosen, so also I will do to them, and repay them in their bosom.

16.  Thus says the Lord; My right hand shall not spare the sinners, and My sword shall not cease over them that shed innocent blood upon the earth.

17.  The fire is gone forth from His wrath, and it will consume the foundations of the earth and the sinners, like as straw is kindled and burned.

18.  Woe to them that sin and keep not my commandments, says the Lord, I will not spare them.  Go your way you children of the power defile not My sanctuary.

19.  For the Lord knows all them that sin against Him, therefore also does He deliver you to death and destruction.

20.  For now the plagues are come upon the whole earth, and you shall remain in them, for God will not deliver you, because you have sinned against Him.

21.  Behold; A terrifying sight appearing from the east where the nations of the dragons of Arabia shall come out with many chariots, and their multitude shall be carried as wind upon the earth, so that all those which hear them, may fear and tremble.

22.  And also the Carmanians raging in wrath shall go forth as the wild boars of the wood, and with great power they shall come and join battle with them and shall waste a portion of the land of the Assyrians.

23.  Then the dragons having the upper hand, and remembering their nature, shall become stronger, and conspiring together in great power shall turn to pursue them.  Then these shall be disorganized and silenced by their power, and shall flee.

24. And from the land of the Assyrians shall the enemy beset them and consume some of them, and in their army shall be fear and trembling, and strife among their kings.

The storm of the days nearing the end

25.  Behold; clouds from the east and from the north unto the south, and they are very terrifying to look upon, full of wrath and storm.  They shall smite upon one another, and shall smite down a great multitude of stars upon the earth, and even their own star.

26.  And there shall be blood from the sword as high as a horse's belly, and dung of men unto a camel's thigh.

27.  And there shall be great fearfulness and trembling upon the earth, and they that see that wrath shall be horror-stricken.

28.  Then shall there come great storms from the south and from the north and another part from the west, and strong winds shall arise from the east, and prevail over the cloud that was raised in wrath.

29.  And the star stirred to cause fear towards the east and west winds, shall be destroyed, and great and mighty clouds, and the star, shall be lifted up full of wrath to make the earth afraid with all that dwell therein.

30.  And they shall pour out over every high and eminent place a horrible star, fire, hail, and flying swords, and many waters, so that all fields may be full, and all rivers with the abundance of waters.

31.  And they shall destroy cities, walls, mountains, hills, the trees of the forest, the grass of the meadows, and their grain.  And they shall steadfastly go unto Babylon, and make her afraid.

32.  They shall come to her and besiege her, the star and all wrath shall they pour out upon her.

33.  Then shall the dust and smoke go up unto heaven, and all them that are around her shall bewail her, and they that remain under her, shall do service to them that have put them in fear.

34.  And you Asia, who are a partaker of the hope of Babylon, in the glory of her person, woe be unto you, you wretch, because you have made yourself like unto her.

35.  You have decked your daughters in whoredom that they might please and glory in your lovers, who have always desired to commit whoredom with you; you have followed her that is hated in all her works and inventions.

36.  Therefore God says; I will send plagues upon you, widowhood, poverty, famine, sword, and pestilence, to waste your houses with destruction and death.

37.  When the heat that is sent over you shall arise, the glory of your power shall be dried up as a flower

38. You shall be weakened like a wretched woman with stripes, as one chastened with wounds, so that your mighty lovers shall not be able to receive you.

39.   Would I have dealt with you so violently, says the Lord, if you had not always killed My chosen, and exulted, clapping your hands, and talking about their dead, when you ware drunk.

40.   Set forth the beauty of your face, for the reward of your whoredom shall be in your bosom, it is therefore that you shall receive your reward.

41.  For like as you did to my chosen, says the Lord, even so will God do unto you, and shall deliver you into trouble.

42.  Your children shall die of hunger, and you shall fall by the sword, your cities shall be broken down, and all your people in the open country shall perish by the sword.

43.  They that are in the mountains shall die of hunger, and eat their own flesh, and drink of their own blood for the very hunger of food, and for thirst of water.

44.  You shall be unhappy above others, and you shall suffer fresh afflictions, and they, as they pass through in returning from devastated Babylon, shall wreck the unprofitable city, and destroy part of your land, and consume part of your glory.

45.  You shall be cast down by them as stubble, and they shall be to you as fire, and consume you and your cities, your land, and your mountains, all the forest and their fruitful trees they shall burn with fire.

46.  They shall carry your children away captive, and shall plunder your wealth, and abolish the glory of your countenance.

 

      Chapter 17

      The Lord a mighty avenger

1.  Woe to you Babylon and Asia.  Woe to you Egypt and Syria.  Gird yourself with sackcloth and haircloth, bewail your children, and be sorry, for your destruction is at hand.

2.  A sword is sent upon you, and who may turn it back?  A fire is sent among you, and who may quench it?  Plagues are sent unto you, and who is he that may drive them away?

3.   Can a man drive off a hungry lion from the forest?  Or may one quench fire in stubble when it has begun to burn?  May one turn again the arrow that is shot of a strong archer?

4.   The Mighty Lord sends the plagues, and who is he that can drive them away?  A fire shall go forth from His wrath, and who is he that may quench it?

5.   He shall cast lightning's, and who shall not fear?  He shall thunder, and who shall not be afraid?  The Lord shall threaten, and who shall not utterly be beaten to powder at His presence?

6.   The earth quakes, and its foundations tremble, the sea rises up with waves from the deep, and the waves thereof are troubled, and the fishes also are troubled before the Lord, and before the glory of His power.

7.   For strong is His right hand that bends the bow, and sharp the arrows that He shoots off.  And they shall not miss when they begin to be shot in the end of the world.

8.   Behold; plagues are sent and shall not return again until they come upon the earth.  The fire is kindled and shall not be put out until it consumes the foundations of the earth.

9.   Just as an arrow, which is shot of a mighty warrior, returns not backwards, even so the plagues that shall be sent upon the earth shall not return again.

10.    Woe unto me, who shall deliver me in those days?

       Calamities near the end

11.    The beginning of sorrows when there shall be great mourning.  The beginning of famine when many shall perish.  The beginning of wars, and the powers shall stand in fear.  The beginning of evils.

12.    Behold; Famines and plagues, tribulations and anguish, are set as scourges for amendment, but for all these things they will not turn from their wickedness, nor always be mindful of the scourges.

13.    Behold, provisions will be so cheap upon the earth that they shall think themselves to be in good shape, but even then evils shall grow upon the earth, sword, famine, and great confusion.

14.    For many of them that dwell upon the earth shall perish by famine, and those that escape the hunger shall be destroyed by the sword.

15.    And the dead shall be cast out as dung, and there shall be no one to comfort them, for the earth shall be wasted, and the cities shall be cast down.

16.    There shall be no man to till the earth or to sow it, the trees shall give fruit, and who shall gather them?  The grapes shall ripen, but who shall tread them?

17.    For all places shall be desolate of men, so that one man shall desire to see another, and to hear his voice.

18.    For of a city, ten shall be left, and two in a field shall hide themselves in the thick groves, and in the clefts of the rocks.

19.    As in an orchard of olives there are left upon every tree three or four olives, or as when a vineyard is gathered some clusters are left to those who diligently search through it.  Even so in those days there shall be three or four left of them that search their houses with the sword.

20.    And the earth shall be made desolate, and the fields thereof shall wax old, and her ways and all her paths shall grow full of thorns, because no man shall travel through them.

21.    The virgins shall mourn having no bridegrooms, the women shall mourn having no husbands, and their daughters shall mourn having no helpers, for in wars shall their bridegrooms be destroyed, and their husbands shall perish of famine.

       Word to the faithful

22.    Hear now these things, and understand them, you servants of the Lord, behold the word of the Lord and receive it.

23.    Believe not the gods of whom the Lord spoke, for behold, the plagues draw near, and are not slack.

24.    Like as within hours great pains come upon a woman in her ninth month to bring forth her son, and there is not a moments delay when the child comes forth, even so shall not the plagues be slack to come upon the earth.  And the world shall mourn, and sorrows shall be everywhere.

25.    O my people hear my word, make yourself ready for the battle, and in those evils be like pilgrims upon the earth, he that sells, let him be as one that escapes.

26.    And he that buys, as one that will lose, he that does business, as he that has no profit by it, and he that builds, as that he shall not dwell therein, he that sows, as if he shall not reap.

27.    And so also he that plants a vineyard, as shall he not gather the grapes, and he that marries, as they who shall not beget children, and they that marry not, as widowers.

28.    Therefore, they that labor, labor in vain, for strangers shall reap their fruits and spoil their goods, overthrow their houses, and take their children captive, for in captivity and famine shall they beget children.

29.    And they that do their business with robbery, the more they deck their cities, their houses, their possessions, and their persons, the more I will be angry with them for their sin, says the Lord.

30.    Like as a whore envies a right honest and virtues woman, so shall righteousness hate iniquity when she decks herself, and shall accuse her to her face when He comes, who searches out every sin on earth.

31.    Be not like unto her therefore, nor to her works, for only a little while and iniquity shall be taken out of the earth, and righteousness shall reign among you.

32.   Let not the sinner say that he has not sinned, for God shall burn coals of fire upon his head, on those who dare to say before the Lord and His glory  - I have not sinned.

       The Lord Almighty

33.     Behold, the Lord knows all the works of man, their imaginations, their thoughts, and their hearts, He who spoke only a word, "Let the earth be made," and it was made, "Let the heavens be made," and it was created.

34.     In His word were the stars made, And He knows the number thereof, He searches the deep and the treasures thereof, He has measured the sea, and what it contains.

35.     He has put the sea in the midst of the waters, and with His word hung the earth upon the waters, He spreads out the heavens like a vault, upon the waters did He found it.

36.    In the desert has He made the springs of water, and pools on top of the mountains so that the flood might pour down from the high rocks to water the earth.

37.    He made man and put his heart in the middle of his body and gave him breath, life, and understanding.

38.    Yes indeed, the Spirit of Almighty God who made all things, and searches out all hidden things in the secrets of the earth, surely, He knows your inventions, and what you think in your hearts, even such as sin and attempt to hide their sin.

39.    Therefore has the Lord accurately searched out all your works, and He will put you all to shame.

40.    And when your sins are brought forth, you shall be ashamed before man, and your own sins shall be your accusers in that day.

41.    And what will you do?  Or where will you hide your sins before God and His angels?  Behold, God himself is the Judge, fear Him, leave off from your sins, and forget your iniquities to meddle no more with them forever, so shall God lead you forth and deliver you from all trouble.

42.    For behold, the burning wrath of a great multitude is kindled over you, and they shall take certain of you, and feed you what is sacrificed to idols, and they that consent unto them shall be held in derision and in reproach, and trodden under foot.

43.    For there shall be great insurrection in every place and city upon those who fear the Lord, they shall be like madmen sparing none, but still spoiling and destroying those that fear the Lord.

44.    For they shall waste and take away their goods, and cast them out of their houses.  Then shall they be known who are my chosen, and they shall be tried as gold in the fire.

45.    Hear O you my beloved, says the Lord; Behold, the days of trouble are at hand, but I will deliver you from them, be not afraid, nor doubt, for God is your guide, and the guide of them who keep My commandments, and My precepts, says the Lord God.

46.    Let not your sins weigh you down, and let not your iniquities lift themselves up.

47.   Woe be unto them that are bound with their sins, and covered with their wickedness like as a field is covered with bushes and its paths covered with thorns so that no man can walk through.  For left undressed, it is cast in the fire, and consumed therein.

(End Esdras.)