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The Fourth Book of Esdras

“help” from the Hebrew (excluded from most "bibles of men")

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Chapter 12

Yes Word (Tyndale-Modern English)

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      And it happened when the Lion spake, these words unto the eagle, I saw, and behold, the head that afore had the upper hand, appeared no more: neither did the four wings appear any more, that came to him, and were set up to reign: and their kingdom was small and full of uproar. And I saw, and behold, they appeared no more, and the whole body of the eagle was burnt, and the earth was in great fear. Then awakened I out of the trance of my mind, and from great fear, and said unto my spirit: Lo, this hast thou given me, in that thou searchest out the ways of the Highest: lo, yet I am weary in my mind, and very weak in my spirit, and little strength is there in me, for the great fear that I received this night. Therefore will I now beseech the Highest, that he will comfort me unto the end: And I said, Lord, Lord, if I have before thy sight, and if I am justified with thee before many other, and if my prayer be come up before thy face, comfort me then, and show me thy servant the interpretation and plain difference of this horrible sight, that thou mayest perfectly comfort my soul: for thou hast judged me worthy, to show me the last of times.
      And he said unto me: this is the interpretation of this sight. The eagle whom thou saw sawest come up from the sea, is the kingdom which was seen in the vision of thy brother Daniel, but it was not expounded unto him, for now I declare it unto thee. Behold, the days come, that there shall rise up a kingdom upon the earth, and it shall be feared above all the kingdoms that were before it. In the same kingdom shall twelve kings reign, one after the other. For the second shall begin to reign, and shall have more time than the other, and this do the twelve wings signify, which thou sawest. As for the voice that spake, and that thou sawest go out from the heads but not from the body, it be tokeneth, that after the time of that kingdom there shall arise great strivings, and it shall stand in peril of falling: nevertheless it shall not yet fall, but shall be set in to his beginning. And the eight under wings which thou sawest hang unto the wings of him, betoken, that in him there shall arise eight kings, whose time shall be small, and their years swift, and two of them shall bear. But when the midst time cometh, there shall be four kept in that time, when his time begineth to come that it may be ended, but two shall be kept unto the end.
      And where as thou sawest three heads resting, this is the interpretation: In his last shall the Highest raise up three kingdoms, and call many again into them, and they shall have the dominion of the earth, and of those that dwell therein, with much labor above all those that were before them. Therefore are they called the heads of the eagle: for it is they that shall bring forth his wickedness again, and that shall perform and finish his last. And where as thou sawest, that the great head appeared no more, it signifieth, that one of them shall die upon his bed, and yet with pain, for the two that remain, shall be slain with the sword. For the sword of the one shall devour the other, but at the last shall he fall through the sword himself.
      And where as thou sawest two underwings upon the head that is on the right side, it signifieth that it is they, whom the Highest hath kept unto their end: this is a small kingdom, full of trouble. The Lion whom thou sawest rising up out of the wood, and roaring, and speaking unto the eagle, and rebuking him for his unrighteousness, is the wind, which the Highest hath kept for them and for their wickedness unto the end: he shall reprove them, and rent them asunder before them. For he shall set them living before the judgement, and shall rebuke them: for the residue of my people shall he deliver with trouble, those that be preserved over mine ends: and he shall make them joyful until the coming day of Judgement, where of I have spoken unto thee from the beginning. This is the dream that thou sawest, and this is the interpretation. Thou only hast been mete to know the secret of the Highest.
      Therefore write all these things that thou hast seen in a book, and hide them, and teach them the wise in the people, whos hearts thou knowest may comprehend and keep these secrets. But wait thou here thyself yet seven days more, that it may be showed the , whatsoever pleaseth the Highest to declare unto thee, and with that he went his way.
      And when all the people perceived, that the seven days were past, And I come again into the city, they gathered them all together from the least to the most, and came unto me, and said: what have we offended thee? and what evil have we done against thee, that thou forsake us, and sitteth here in this place? For of all the people thou only are left us, as a grape of the vine, and as a candle in a dark place, and as a haven a ship preserved from the tempest. Have we not adversity enough, but thou must forsake us? Were it not better for us, that we had been burnt with Sion? For we are no better, then they that died there: and they wept with loud voice. Then answered I them and said: Be of good comfort O' Israel, be not heavy thou house of Jacob: for the Highest hath you in remembrance, and the Mighty hath not forgotten you in temptation. As for me, I have not forsaken you, neither am I departed from you: but am come into this place to pray, because of the misery of Israel, that I might seek mercy for the low estate of your Sanctuary. And now go your way home every man, and after these days will I come unto you. So the people went their way into the city, like as I commanded them: but I remained in the field seven days, as the Angel bade me: and I ate only of the flowers of the field, and had my meat of the herbs in those days.


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