2 Esdras 9

1 And he answered me, and said, Measure thou diligently within thyself: and when thou seest that a certain part of the signs are past, which have been told thee beforehand,

2 then shalt thou understand, that it is the very time, wherein the Most High will visit the world which was made by him.

3 And when there shall be seen in the world earthquakes, disquietude of peoples, devices of nations, wavering of leaders, disquietude of princes,

4 then shalt thou understand, that the Most High spake of these things from the days that were aforetime from the beginning.

5 For like as of all that is made in the world, the beginning is evident, and the end manifest;

6 so also are the times of the Most High: the beginnings are manifest in wonders and mighty works, and the end in effects and signs.

7 And everyone that shall be saved, and shall be able to escape by his wotks, or by faith, whereby he hath believed,

8 shall be preserved from the said perils, and shall see my salvation in my land, and within my borders, which I have sanctified for me from the beginning.

9 Then shall they be amazed, which now have abused my ways: and they that have cast them away despitefully shall dwell in torments.

10 For as many as in their life have received benefits, and yet have not known me;

11 and as many as have scorned my law, while they had yet liberty, and, when as yet place of repentance was open unto them, understood not, but despised it;

12 the same must know it after death by torment.

13 And therefore be thou no longer curious how the ungodly shall be punished; but inquire how the righteous shall be saved, they whose the world is, and for whom the world was created.

14 And I answered and said,

15 I have said before, and now do speak, and will speak it also hereafter, that there be more of them which perish, than of the which will be saved:

16 like as a wave is greater than a drop.

17 And he answered me, saying, Like as the field is, so also the seed; and as the flowers be, such are the colours also; and such as the work is, such also is the judgement thereon; and as is the husbandman, so is his threshing-floor also. For there was a time in the world,

18 even then when I was preparing for them that now live, before the world was made for them to dwell in; and then no man spake against me,

19 for there was not any: but now they which are created in this world that is prepared, both with a table that faileth not, and a law which is unsearchable, are corrupted in their manners.

20 So I considered my world, and, lo, it was destroyed, and my earth, and, lo, it was in peril, because of the devices that were come into it.

21 And I saw, and spared them, but not greatly, and saved me a grape out of a cluster, and a plant out of a great forest.

22 Let the multitude perish then, which was born in vain; and let my grape be saved, and my plant; for with great labour have I made them perfect.

23 Nevertheless if thou wilt cease yet seven days more, (howbeit thou shalt not fast in them,

24 but shalt go into a field of flowers, where no house is builded, and eat only of the flowers of the field; and thou shalt taste no flesh, and shalt drink no wine, but shalt eat flowers only;)

25 and pray unto the Most High continually, then will I come and talk with thee.

26 So I went my way, like as he commanded me, into the field which is called Ardat; and there I sat among the flowers, and did eat of the herbs of the field, and the meat of the same satisfied me.

27 And it came to pass after seven days that I lay upon the grass, and my heart was vexed again, like as before:

28 and my mouth was opened, and I began to speak before the Lord Most High, and said,

29 O Lord, thou didst shew thyself among us, unto our fathers in the wilderness, when they went forth out of Egypt, and when they came into the wilderness, where no man treadeth and that beareth no fruit;

30 and thou didst say, Hear me, thou Israel; and mark my words, O seed of Jacob.

31 For, behold, I sow my law in you, and it shall bring forth fruit in you, and ye shall be glorified in it for ever.

32 But our fathers, which received the law, kept it not, and observed not the statutes: and the fruit of the law did not perish, neither could it, for it was thine;

33 yet they that received it perished, because they kept not the thing that was sown in them.

34 And, lo, it is a custom, that when the ground hath received seed, or the sea a ship, or any vessel meat or drink, and when it cometh to pass that that which is sown, or that which is launched,

35 or the things which have been received, should come to an end, these come to an end, but the receptacles remain: yet with us it hath not happened so.

36 For we that have received the law shall perish by sin, and our heart also which received it.

37 Notwithstanding the law perisheth not, but remaineth in its honour.

38 And when I spake these things in my heart, I looked about me with mine eyes, and upon the right side I saw a woman, and, behold, she mourned and wept with a loud voice, and was much grieved in mind, and her clothes were rent, and she had ashes upon her head.

39 Then let I my thoughts go wherein I was occupied, and turned me unto her,

40 and said unto her, Wherefore weepest thou? and why art thou grieved in thy mind?

41 And she said unto me, Let me alone, my Lord, that I may bewail myself, and add unto my sorrow, for I am sore vexed in my mind, and brought very low.

42 And I said unto her, What aileth thee? Tell me.

43 She said unto me, I thy servant was barren, and had no child, though I had a husband thirty years.

44 And every hour and every day these thirty years did I make my prayer to the Most High day and night.

45 And it came to pass after thirty years that God heard me thine handmaid, and looked upon my low estate, and considered my trouble, and gave me a son: and I rejoiced in him greatly, I and my husband, and all my neighbours: and we gave great honour unto the Mighty.

46 And I nourished him with great travail.

47 So when he grew up, and I came to take him a wife, I made him a feast day.

Domínio Público. Esta tradução bíblica de domínio público é trazida a você por cortesia de eBible.org.