1 Nevertheless as coming the tokens, behold, the days shall come, that they which dwell upon earth shall be taken in a 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 now thou seest, or that thou hast heard long ago.
3 And the land, that thou seest now to have root, shalt thou see wasted suddenly.
4 But if the most High grant thee to live, thou shalt see after the third trumpet that the sun shall suddenly shine again in the night, and the moon thrice in the day:
5 And blood shall drop out of wood, and the stone shall give his voice, and the people shall be troubled:
6 And even he shall rule, whom they look not for that dwell upon the earth, and the fowls shall take their flight away together:
7 And the Sodomitish sea shall cast out fish, and make a noise in the night, which many have not known: but they shall all hear the voice thereof.
8 There shall be a confusion also in many places, and the fire shall be oft sent out again, and the wild beasts shall change their places, and menstruous women shall bring forth monsters:
9 And salt waters shall be found in the sweet, and all friends shall destroy one another; then shall wit hide itself, and understanding withdraw itself into his secret chamber,
10 And shall be sought of many, and yet not be found: then shall unrighteousness and incontinency be multiplied upon earth.
11 One land also shall ask another, and say, Is righteousness that maketh a man righteous gone through thee? And it shall say, No.
12 At the same time shall men hope, but nothing obtain: they shall labour, but their ways shall not prosper.
13 To shew thee such tokens I have leave; and if thou wilt pray again, and weep as now, and fast even days, thou shalt hear yet greater things.
14 Then I awaked, and an extreme fearfulness went through all my body, and my mind was troubled, so that it fainted.
15 So the angel that was come to talk with me held me, comforted me, and set me up upon my feet.
16 And in the second night it came to pass, that Salathiel the captain of the people came unto me, saying, Where hast thou been? and why is thy countenance so heavy?
17 Knowest thou not that Israel is committed unto thee in the land of their captivity?
18 Up then, and eat bread, and forsake us not, as the shepherd that leaveth his flock in the hands of cruel wolves.
19 Then said I unto him, Go thy ways from me, and come not nigh me. And he heard what I said, and went from me.
20 And so I fasted seven days, mourning and weeping, like as Uriel the angel commanded me.
21 And after seven days so it was, that the thoughts of my heart were very grievous unto me again,
22 And my soul recovered the spirit of understanding, and I began to talk with the most High again,
23 And said, O Lord that bearest rule, of every wood of the earth, and of all the trees thereof, thou hast chosen thee one only vine:
24 And of all lands of the whole world thou hast chosen thee one pit: and of all the flowers thereof one lily:
25 And of all the depths of the sea thou hast filled thee one river: and of all builded cities thou hast hallowed Sion unto thyself:
26 And of all the fowls that are created thou hast named thee one dove: and of all the cattle that are made thou hast provided thee one sheep:
27 And among all the multitudes of people thou hast gotten thee one people: and unto this people, whom thou lovedst, thou gavest a law that is approved of all.
28 And now, O Lord, why hast thou given this one people over unto many? and upon the one root hast thou prepared others, and why hast thou scattered thy only one people among many?
29 And they which did gainsay thy promises, and believed not thy covenants, have trodden them down.
30 If thou didst so much hate thy people, yet shouldest thou punish them with thine own hands.
31 Now when I had spoken these words, the angel that came to me the night afore was sent unto me,
32 And said unto me, Hear me, and I will instruct thee; hearken to the thing that I say, and I shall tell thee more.
33 And I said, Speak on, my Lord. Then said he unto me, Thou art sore troubled in mind for Israel’s sake: lovest thou that people better than he that made them?
34 And I said, No, Lord: but of very grief have I spoken: for my reins pain me every hour, while I labour to comprehend the way of the most High, and to seek out part of his judgment.
35 And he said unto me, Thou canst not. And I said, Wherefore, Lord? whereunto was I born then? or why was not my mother’s womb then my grave, that I might not have seen the travail of Jacob, and the wearisome toil of the stock of Israel?
36 And he said unto me, Number me the things that are not yet come, gather me together the dross that are scattered abroad, make me the flowers green again that are withered,
37 Open me the places that are closed, and bring me forth the winds that in them are shut up, shew me the image of a voice: and then I will declare to thee the thing that thou labourest to know.
38 And I said, O Lord that bearest rule, who may know these things, but he that hath not his dwelling with men?
39 As for me, I am unwise: how may I then speak of these things whereof thou askest me?
40 Then said he unto me, Like as thou canst do none of these things that I have spoken of, even so canst thou not find out my judgment, or in the end the love that I have promised unto my people.
41 And I said, Behold, O Lord, yet art thou nigh unto them that be reserved till the end: and what shall they do that have been before me, or we that be now, or they that shall come after us?
42 And he said unto me, I will liken my judgment unto a ring: like as there is no slackness of the last, even so there is no swiftness of the first.
43 So I answered and said, Couldest thou not make those that have been made, and be now, and that are for to come, at once; that thou mightest shew thy judgment the sooner?
44 Then answered he me, and said, The creature may not haste above the maker; neither may the world hold them at once that shall be created therein.
45 And I said, As thou hast said unto thy servant, that thou, which givest life to all, hast given life at once to the creature that thou hast created, and the creature bare it: even so it might now also bear them that now be present at once.
46 And he said unto me, Ask the womb of a woman, and say unto her, If thou bringest forth children, why dost thou it not together, but one after another? pray her therefore to bring forth ten children at once.
47 And I said, She cannot: but must do it by distance of time.
48 Then said he unto me, Even so have I given the womb of the earth to those that be sown in it in their times.
49 For like as a young child may not bring forth the things that belong to the aged, even so have I disposed the world which I created.
50 And I asked, and said, Seeing thou hast now given me the way, I will proceed to speak before thee: for our mother, of whom thou hast told me that she is young, draweth now nigh unto age.
51 He answered me, and said, Ask a woman that beareth children, and she shall tell thee.
52 Say unto her, Wherefore are unto they whom thou hast now brought forth like those that were before, but less of stature?
53 And she shall answer thee, They that be born in the the strength of youth are of one fashion, and they that are born in the time of age, when the womb faileth, are otherwise.
54 Consider thou therefore also, how that ye are less of stature than those that were before you.
55 And so are they that come after you less than ye, as the creatures which now begin to be old, and have passed over the strength of youth.
56Then said I, Lord, I beseech thee, if I have found favour in thy sight, shew thy servant by whom thou visitest thy creature.
1 And he said unto me, In the beginning, when the earth was made, before the borders of the world stood, or ever the winds blew,
2 Before it thundered and lightened, or ever the foundations of paradise were laid,
3 Before the fair flowers were seen, or ever the moveable powers were established, before the innumerable multitude of angels were gathered together,
4 Or ever the heights of the air were lifted up, before the measures of the firmament were named, or ever the chimneys in Sion were hot,
5 And ere the present years were sought out, and or ever the inventions of them that now sin were turned, before they were sealed that have gathered faith for a treasure:
6 Then did I consider 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.
7 Then answered I and 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 followeth?
8 And he said unto me, From Abraham unto Isaac, when Jacob and Esau were born of him, Jacob’s hand held first the heel of Esau.
9 For Esau is the end of the world, and Jacob is the beginning of it that followeth.
10 The hand of man is betwixt the heel and the hand: other question, Esdras, ask thou not.
11 I answered then and said, O Lord that bearest rule, if I have found favour in thy sight,
12 I beseech thee, shew thy servant the end of thy tokens, whereof thou shewedst me part the last night.
13 So he answered and said unto me, Stand up upon thy feet, and hear a mighty sounding voice.
14 And it shall be as it were a great motion; but the place where thou standest shall not be moved.
15 And therefore when it speaketh be not afraid: for the word is of the end, and the foundation of the earth is understood.
16 And why? because the speech of these things trembleth and is moved: for it knoweth that the end of these things must be changed.
17 And it happened, that when I had heard it I stood up upon my feet, and hearkened, and, behold, there was a voice that spake, and the sound of it was like the sound of many waters.
18 And it said, Behold, the days come, that I will begin to draw nigh, and to visit them that dwell upon the earth,
19 And will begin to make inquisition of them, what they be that have hurt unjustly with their unrighteousness, and when the affliction of Sion shall be fulfilled;
20 And when the world, that shall begin to vanish away, shall be finished, then will I shew these tokens: the books shall be opened before the firmament, and they shall see all together:
21 And the children of a year old shall speak with their voices, the women with child shall bring forth untimely children of three or four months old, and they shall live, and be raised up.
22 And suddenly shall the sown places appear unsown, the full storehouses shall suddenly be found empty:
23 And tha trumpet shall give a sound, which when every man heareth, they shall be suddenly afraid.
24 At that time shall friends fight one against another like enemies, and the earth shall stand in fear with those that dwell therein, the springs of the fountains shall stand still, and in three hours they shall not run.
25 Whosoever remaineth from all these that I have told thee shall escape, and see my salvation, and the end of your world.
26 And the men that are received shall see it, who have not tasted death from their birth: and the heart of the inhabitants shall be changed, and turned into another meaning.
27 For evil shall be put out, and deceit shall be quenched.
28 As for faith, it shall flourish, corruption shall be overcome, and the truth, which hath been so long without fruit, shall be declared.
29 And when he talked with me, behold, I looked by little and little upon him before whom I stood.
30 And these words said he unto me; I am come to shew thee the time of the night to come.
31 If thou wilt pray yet more, and fast seven days again, I shall tell thee greater things by day than I have heard.
32 For thy voice is heard before the most High: for the Mighty hath seen thy righteous dealing, he hath seen also thy chastity, which thou hast had ever since thy youth.
33 And therefore hath he sent me to shew thee all these things, and to say unto thee, Be of good comfort and fear not
34 And hasten not with the times that are past, to think vain things, that thou mayest not hasten from the latter times.
35 And it came to pass after this, that I wept again, and fasted seven days in like manner, that I might fulfil the three weeks which he told me.
36 And in the eighth night was my heart vexed within me again, and I began to speak before the most High.
37 For my spirit was greatly set on fire, and my soul was in distress.
38 And I said, O Lord, thou spakest from the beginning of the creation, even the first day, and saidst thus; Let heaven and earth be made; and thy word was a perfect work.
39 And then was the spirit, and darkness and silence were on every side; the sound of man’s voice was not yet formed.
40 Then commandedst thou a fair light to come forth of thy treasures, that thy work might appear.
41 Upon the second day thou madest the spirit of the firmament, and commandedst it to part asunder, and to make a division betwixt the waters, that the one part might go up, and the other remain beneath.
42 Upon the third day thou didst command that the waters should be gathered in the seventh part of the earth: six pats hast thou dried up, and kept them, to the intent that of these some being planted of God and tilled might serve thee.
43 For as soon as thy word went forth the work was made.
44 For immediately there was great and innumerable fruit, and many and divers pleasures for the taste, and flowers of unchangeable colour, and odours of wonderful smell: and this was done the third day.
45 Upon the fourth day thou commandedst that the sun should shine, and the moon give her light, and the stars should be in order:
46 And gavest them a charge to do service unto man, that was to be made.
47 Upon the fifth day thou saidst unto the seventh part, where the waters were gathered that it should bring forth living creatures, fowls and fishes: and so it came to pass.
48 For the dumb water and without life brought forth living things at the commandment of God, that all people might praise thy wondrous works.
49 Then didst thou ordain two living creatures, the one thou calledst Enoch, and the other Leviathan;
50 And didst separate the one from the other: for the seventh part, namely, where the water was gathered together, might not hold them both.
51 Unto Enoch thou gavest one part, which was dried up the third day, that he should dwell in the same part, wherein are a thousand hills:
52 But unto Leviathan thou gavest the seventh part, namely, the moist; and hast kept him to be devoured of whom thou wilt, and when.
53 Upon the sixth day thou gavest commandment unto the earth, that before thee it should bring forth beasts, cattle, and creeping things:
54 And after these, Adam also, whom thou madest lord of all thy creatures: of him come we all, and the people also whom thou hast chosen.
55 All this have I spoken before thee, O Lord, because thou madest the world for our sakes
56 As for the other people, which also come of Adam, thou hast said that they are nothing, but be like unto spittle: and hast likened the abundance of them unto a drop that falleth from a vessel.
57 And now, O Lord, behold, these heathen, which have ever been reputed as nothing, have begun to be lords over us, and to devour us.
58 But we thy people, whom thou hast called thy firstborn, thy only begotten, and thy fervent lover, are given into their hands.
59 If the world now be made for our sakes, why do we not possess an inheritance with the world? how long shall this endure?