Apocalypse of Esdras – 06 Chapters 13 and 14
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
1 And it came to pass after seven days, I dreamed a dream by night:
2 And, lo, there arose a wind from the sea, that it moved all the waves thereof.
3 And I beheld, and, lo, that man waxed strong with the thousands of heaven: and when he turned his countenance to look, all the things trembled that were seen under him.
4 And whensoever the voice went out of his mouth, all they burned that heard his voice, like as the earth faileth when it feeleth the fire.
5 And after this I beheld, and, lo, there was gathered together a multitude of men, out of number, from the four winds of the heaven, to subdue the man that came out of the sea
6 But I beheld, and, lo, he had graved himself a great mountain, and flew up upon it.
7 But I would have seen the region or place whereout the hill was graven, and I could not.
8 And after this I beheld, and, lo, all they which were gathered together to subdue him were sore afraid, and yet durst fight.
9 And, lo, as he saw the violence of the multitude that came, he neither lifted up his hand, nor held sword, nor any instrument of war:
10 But only I saw that he sent out of his mouth as it had been a blast of fire, and out of his lips a flaming breath, and out of his tongue he cast out sparks and tempests.
11 And they were all mixed together; the blast of fire, the flaming breath, and the great tempest; and fell with violence upon the multitude which was prepared to fight, and burned them up every one, so that upon a sudden of an innumerable multitude nothing was to be perceived, but only dust and smell of smoke: when I saw this I was afraid.
12 Afterward saw I the same man come down from the mountain, and call unto him another peaceable Multitude.
13 And there came much people unto him, whereof some were glad, some were sorry, and some of them were bound, and other some brought of them that were offered: then was I sick through great fear, and I awaked, and said,
14 Thou hast shewed thy servant these wonders from the beginning, and hast counted me worthy that thou shouldest receive my prayer:
15 Shew me now yet the interpretation of this dream.
16 For as I conceive in mine understanding, woe unto them that shall be left in those days and much more woe unto them that are not left behind!
17 For they that were not left were in heaviness.
18 Now understand I the things that are laid up in the latter days, which shall happen unto them, and to those that are left behind.
19 Therefore are they come into great perils and many necessities, like as these dreams declare.
20 Yet is it easier for him that is in danger to come into these things, than to pass away as a cloud out of the world, and not to see the things that happen in the last days. And he answered unto me, and said,
21 The interpretation of the vision shall I shew thee, and I will open unto thee the thing that thou hast required.
22 Whereas thou hast spoken of them that are left behind, this is the interpretation:
23 He that shall endure the peril in that time hath kept himself: they that be fallen into danger are such as have works, and faith toward the Almighty.
24 Know this therefore, that they which be left behind are more blessed than they that be dead.
25 This is the meaning of the vision: Whereas thou sawest a man coming up from the midst of the sea:
26 The same is he whom God the Highest hath kept a great season, which by his own self shall deliver his creature: and he shall order them that are left behind.
27 And whereas thou sawest, that out of his mouth there came as a blast of wind, and fire, and storm;
28 And that he held neither sword, nor any instrument of war, but that the rushing in of him destroyed the whole multitude that came to subdue him; this is the interpretation:
29 Behold, the days come, when the most High will begin to deliver them that are upon the earth.
30 And he shall come to the astonishment of them that dwell on the earth.
31 And one shall undertake to fight against another, one city against another, one place against another, one people against another, and one realm against another.
32 And the time shall be when these things shall come to pass, and the signs shall happen which I shewed thee before, and then shall my Son be declared, whom thou sawest as a man ascending.
33 And when all the people hear his voice, every man shall in their own land leave the battle they have one against another.
34 And an innumerable multitude shall be gathered together, as thou sawest them, willing to come, and to overcome him by fighting.
35 But he shall stand upon the top of the mount Sion.
36 And Sion shall come, and shall be shewed to all men, being prepared and builded, like as thou sawest the hill graven without hands.
37 And this my Son shall rebuke the wicked inventions of those nations, which for their wicked life are fallen into the tempest;
38 And shall lay before them their evil thoughts, and the torments wherewith they shall begin to be tormented, which are like unto a flame: and he shall destroy them without labour by the law which is like unto me.
39 And whereas thou sawest that he gathered another peaceable multitude unto him;
40 Those are the ten tribes, which were carried away prisoners out of their own land in the time of Osea the king, whom Salmanasar the king of Assyria led away captive, and he carried them over the waters, and so came they into another land.
41 But they took this counsel among themselves, that they would leave the multitude of the heathen, and go forth into a further country, where never mankind dwelt,
42 That they might there keep their statutes, which they never kept in their own land.
43 And they entered into Euphrates by the narrow places of the river.
44 For the most High then shewed signs for them, and held still the flood, till they were passed over.
45 For through that country there was a great way to go, namely, of a year and a half: and the same region is called Arsareth.
46 Then dwelt they there until the latter time; and now when they shall begin to come,
47 The Highest shall stay the springs of the stream again, that they may go through: therefore sawest thou the multitude with peace.
48 But those that be left behind of thy people are they that are found within my borders.
49 Now when he destroyeth the multitude of the nations that are gathered together, he shall defend his people that remain.
50 And then shall he shew them great wonders.
51 Then said I, O Lord that bearest rule, shew me this: Wherefore have I seen the man coming up from the midst of the sea?
52 And he said unto me, Like as thou canst neither seek out nor know the things that are in the deep of the sea: even so can no man upon earth see my Son, or those that be with him, but in the day time.
53 This is the interpretation of the dream which thou sawest, and whereby thou only art here lightened.
54 For thou hast forsaken thine own way, and applied thy diligence unto my law, and sought it.
55 Thy life hast thou ordered in wisdom, and hast called understanding thy mother.
56 And therefore have I shewed thee the treasures of the Highest: after other three days I will speak other things unto thee, and declare unto thee mighty and wondrous things.
57 Then went I forth into the field, giving praise and thanks greatly unto the most High because of his wonders which he did in time;
58 And because he governeth the same, and such things as fall in their seasons: and there I sat three days.
1 And it came to pass upon the third day, I sat under an oak, and, behold, there came a voice out of a bush over against me, and said, Esdras, Esdras.
2 And I said, Here am I, Lord And I stood up upon my feet.
3 Then said he unto me, In the bush I did manifestly reveal myself unto Moses, and talked with him, when my people served in Egypt:
4 And I sent him and led my people out of Egypt, and brought him up to the mount of where I held him by me a long season,
5 And told him many wondrous things, and shewed him the secrets of the times, and the end; and commanded him, saying,
6 These words shalt thou declare, and these shalt thou hide.
7 And now I say unto thee,
8 That thou lay up in thy heart the signs that I have shewed, and the dreams that thou hast seen, and the interpretations which thou hast heard:
9 For thou shalt be taken away from all, and from henceforth thou shalt remain with my Son, and with such as be like thee, until the times be ended.
10 For the world hath lost his youth, and the times begin to wax old.
11 For the world is divided into twelve parts, and the ten parts of it are gone already, and half of a tenth part:
12 And there remaineth that which is after the half of the tenth part.
13 Now therefore set thine house in order, and reprove thy people, comfort such of them as be in trouble, and now renounce corruption,
14 Let go from thee mortal thoughts, cast away the burdens of man, put off now the weak nature,
15 And set aside the thoughts that are most heavy unto thee, and haste thee to flee from these times.
16 For yet greater evils than those which thou hast seen happen shall be done hereafter.
17 For look how much the world shall be weaker through age, so much the more shall evils increase upon them that dwell therein.
18 For the time is fled far away, and leasing is hard at hand: for now hasteth the vision to come, which thou hast seen.
19 Then answered I before thee, and said,
20 Behold, Lord, I will go, as thou hast commanded me, and reprove the people which are present: but they that shall be born afterward, who shall admonish them? thus the world is set in darkness, and they that dwell therein are without light.
21 For thy law is burnt, therefore no man knoweth the things that are done of thee, or the work that shall begin.
22 But if I have found grace before thee, send the Holy Ghost into me, and I shall write all that hath been done in the world since the beginning, which were written in thy law, that men may find thy path, and that they which will live in the latter days may live.
23 And he answered me, saying, Go thy way, gather the people together, and say unto them, that they seek thee not for forty days.
24 But look thou prepare thee many box trees, and take with thee Sarea, Dabria, Selemia, Ecanus, and Asiel, these five which are ready to write swiftly;
25 And come hither, and I shall light a candle of understanding in thine heart, which shall not be put out, till the things be performed which thou shalt begin to write.
26 And when thou hast done, some things shalt thou publish, and some things shalt thou shew secretly to the wise: to morrow this hour shalt thou begin to write.
27 Then went I forth, as he commanded, and gathered all the people together, and said,
28 Hear these words, O Israel.
29 Our fathers at the beginning were strangers in Egypt, from whence they were delivered:
30 And received the law of life, which they kept not, which ye also have transgressed after them.
31 Then was the land, even the land of Sion, parted among you by lot: but your fathers, and ye yourselves, have done unrighteousness, and have not kept the ways which the Highest commanded you.
32 And forasmuch as he is a righteous judge, he took from you in time the thing that he had given you.
33 And now are ye here, and your brethren among you.
34 Therefore if so be that ye will subdue your own understanding, and reform your hearts, ye shall be kept alive and after death ye shall obtain mercy.
35 For after death shall the judgment come, when we shall live again: and then shall the names of the righteous be manifest, and the works of the ungodly shall be declared.
36 Let no man therefore come unto me now, nor seek after me these forty days.
37 So I took the five men, as he commanded me, and we went into the field, and remained there.
38 And the next day, behold, a voice called me, saying, Esdras, open thy mouth, and drink that I give thee to drink.
39 Then opened I my mouth, and, behold, he reached me a full cup, which was full as it were with water, but the colour of it was like fire.
40 And I took it, and drank: and when I had drunk of it, my heart uttered understanding, and wisdom grew in my breast, for my spirit strengthened my memory:
41 And my mouth was opened, and shut no more.
42 The Highest gave understanding unto the five men, and they wrote the wonderful visions of the night that were told, which they knew not: and they sat forty days, and they wrote in the day, and at night they ate bread.
43 As for me. I spake in the day, and I held not my tongue by night.
44 In forty days they wrote two hundred and four books.
45 And it came to pass, when the forty days were filled, that the Highest spake, saying, The first that thou hast written publish openly, that the worthy and unworthy may read it:
46 But keep the seventy last, that thou mayest deliver them only to such as be wise among the people:
47 For in them is the spring of understanding, the fountain of wisdom, and the stream of knowledge.
48 And I did so.