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Thursday, October 19, 2006

Selected Chapters From The Gospel of Barnabas

This morning, I have for you something special to read.

Something that has been kept hidden from the general population by decree from the Church authorities of old, who have banned it because it contains prophecies of the coming of the Messenger after Jesus Christ the Messiah @ Prophet Eesa ibni Maryam, Alaihis Salam.

This Comparative Religious Studies reading material is best for those of you who have a firm basis of Aqeedah and Tawheed in Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala.

I encourage new learners to affirm your Ilm of Tawheed and Basics of Iman before venturing forth into this field of studies. Insya Allah.

This is the Gospel of Barnabas, or rather selected chapters of it.

Nevertheless, I am sure that there are out there, those who have yet to read and know about it or those who might have read it before but no longer have access to it.

Well, here is your Thursday morning present, in the 26th day of Ramadhan, Islam's holiest month of the year, 1427 years after the Final Messenger's Hijrah @ migration from Makkah to Madinah!

I hope that this morning's offering will open up hearts and minds of those who cherish nothing but the truth, love nothing but good knowledge and information and those who love God and His Glad Tidings of a Just Reward for those who strive to seek His Salvation!

Have a pleasant read and do have a very nice, productive, safe and pleasant day ! Ameen.

Selected Chapters From
THE GOSPEL OF BARNABAS


The complete Gospel contains 222 chapters. Most of the chapters are one- to two-page long, and many contain only a couple of paragraphs. The chapters included here are for reader's attention to certain topics relevant to comparative religion studies. An index to topics is created below for easy reference. The text including the title of the chapters is taken from the book 'The Gospel of Barnabas' published by a few publishers during the 1970s and the 1980s.

Although it [Gospel of Barnabas] too, like the four accepted Gospels, has inevitably suffered from being translated and filtered through several languages it is, at least, an eye-witness account of Jesus's life....

Thus it is debatable whether Mark's Gospel can be regarded as the common source of the three Synoptic Gospels, whereas all the events recorded in these three Gospels are contained within the Gospel of Barnabas.

More in The History of the Gospel of Barnabas.

Readers are cautioned that some narrations of this Gospel may have been altered in translations from the original over the centuries before it was translated into English.

A Muslim should not believe any statement in this Gospel that contradicts the Qur'an and the authentic Hadiths of the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him.

Both the Qur'an and the authentic Hadiths contain numerous narrations about the Prophet 'Isa (Jesus) and his mother Maryam (Mary), peace be upon them both.

The reader is encouraged to visit Islamic web sites for further comparative study.



True Gospel of Jesus, called Christ, a new prophet sent by God to the world: according to the description of Barnabas his apostle.

Barnabas, apostle of Jesus the Nazarene, called Christ, to all them that dwell upon the earth desireth peace and consolation.

Dearly beloved the great and wonderful God hath during these past days visited us by his prophet Jesus Christ in great mercy of teaching and miracles, by reason whereof many, being deceived of Satan, under presence of piety, are preaching most impious doctrine, calling Jesus son of God, repudiating the circumcision ordained of God for ever, and permitting every unclean meat: among whom also Paul hath been deceived, whereof I speak not without grief; for which cause I am writing that truth which I have seen and heard, in the intercourse that I have had with Jesus, in order that ye may be saved, and not be deceived of Satan and perish in the judgment of God. Therefore beware of every one that preacheth unto you new doctrine contrary to that which I write, that ye may be saved eternally.

The great God be with you and guard you from Satan and from every evil. Amen.

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Chapter 1. In this first chapter is contained the annunciation of the angel Gabriel to Virgin Mary concerning the birth of Jesus.

In these last years a virgin called Mary, of the lineage of David, of the tribe of Judah, was visited by the angel Gabriel from God. This virgin, living in all holiness without any offense, being blameless, and abiding in prayer with fastings, being one day alone, there entered into her chamber the angel Gabriel, and he saluted her, saying: 'God be with thee, O Mary'.

The virgin was affrighted at the appearance of the angel; but the angel comforted her, saying: 'Fear not, Mary, for thou hast found favour with God, who hath chosen thee to be mother of a prophet, whom he will send to the people of Israel in order that they may walk in his laws with truth of heart.'

The virgin answered: 'Now how shall I bring forth sons, seeing I know not a man?' The angel answered: 'O Mary, God who made man without a man is able to generate in thee man with- out a man, because with him nothing is impossible.' Mary answered: 'I know that God is almighty, therefore his will be done.' The angel answered: 'Now be conceived in thee the prophet, whom thou shalt name Jesus: and thou shalt keep him from wine and from strong drink and from every unclean meat, because the child is an holy one of God.' Mary bowed herself with humility, saying: 'Behold the handmaid of God, be it done according to thy word.'

The angel departed, and the virgin glorified God, saying: 'Know, O my soul, the greatness of God, and exult, my spirit, in God my Saviour; for he hath regarded the lowliness of his handmaiden, insomuch that I shall be called blessed by all the nations, for he that is mighty hath made me great, and blessed be his holy name. For his mercy extendeth from generation to generation of them that fear him. Mighty hath he made his hand, and he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of his heart. He hath put down the mighty from their seat, and hath exalted the humble. Him who hath been hungry hath he filled with good things, and the rich he hath sent empty away. For he keepeth in memory the promises made to Abraham and to his son for ever'.

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Chapter 10. Jesus receives the Gospel from angel Gabriel

Jesus having come to the age of thirty years, as he himself said unto me, went up to Mount Olives with his mother to gather olives. Then at midday as he was praying, when he came to these words: 'Lord, with mercy...,' he was surrounded by an exceeding bright light and by an infinite multitude of angels, who were saying: 'Blessed be God.' The angel Gabriel presented to him as it were a shining mirror, a book, which descended into the heart of Jesus, in which he had knowledge of what God hath done and what hath said and what God willeth insomuch that everything was laid bare and open to him; as he said unto me: 'Believe, Barnabas, that I know every prophet with every prophecy, insomuch that whatever I say the whole hath come forth from that book.'

Jesus, having received this vision, and knowing that he was a prophet sent to the house of Israel, revealed all to Mary his mother, telling her that he needs must suffer great persecution for the honour of God, and that he could not any longer abide with her to serve her. Whereupon, having heard this, Mary answered: 'Son. ere thou west born all was announced to me; wherefore blessed be the holy name of God. Jesus departed therefore that day from his mother to attend to his prophetic office.

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Chapter 13. The remarkable fear of Jesus and his prayer, and the wonderful comfort of the angel Gabriel.

Some days having passed, Jesus having in spirit perceived the desire of the priests, ascended the Mount of Olives to pray. And having passed the whole night in prayer, in the morning Jesus praying said: 'O Lord, I know that the scribes hate me, and the priests are minded to kill me, thy servant; therefore, Lord God almighty and merciful, in mercy hear the prayers of the servant, and save me from their snares, for thou art my salvation. Thou knowest, Lord, that I thy servant seek thee alone, O Lord, and speak thy word; for thy word is truth, which endureth for ever.'

When Jesus had spoken these words, behold there came to him the angel Gabriel, saying: 'Fear not, O Jesus, for a thousand thousand who dwell above the heaven guard thy garments, and thou shalt not die till everything be fulfilled, and the world shall be near its end.'

Jesus fell with his face to the ground, saying: 'O great Lord God, how great is thy mercy upon me, and what shall I give thee, Lord, for all that thou hast granted me?' The angel Gabriel answered: 'Arise, Jesus, and remember Abraham, who being willing to make sacrifice to God of his only-begotten son Ishmael, to fulfil the word of God, and the knife not being able to cut his son, at my word offered in sacrifice a sheep. Even so therefore shalt thou do, O Jesus, servant of God.

Jesus answered: 'Willingly, but where shall I find the lamb, seeing I have no money, and it is not lawful to steal it?'

Thereupon the angel Gabriel showed unto him a sheep, which Jesus offered in sacrifice, praising and blessing God, who is glorious for ever.

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Chapter 14. After the fast of forty days, Jesus chooseth twelve apostles.

Jesus descended from the mount, and passed alone by night to the farther side of Jordan, and fasted forty days and forty nights, not eating anything day nor night, making continual supplication to the Lord for the salvation of his people to whom God had sent him. And when the forty days were passed he was an hungered. Then appeared Satan unto him, and tempted him in many words, but Jesus drove him away by the power of words of God. Satan having departed, the angels came and ministered unto Jesus that whereof he had need.

Jesus, having returned to the region of Jerusalem, was found again of the people with exceeding great joy, and they prayed him that he would abide with them; for his words were not as those of the scribes, but were with power, for they touched the heart.

Jesus, seeing that great was the multitude of them that returned to their heart for to walk in the law of God, went up into the mountain, and abode all night in prayer, and when day was come he descended from the mountain, and chose twelve, whom he called apostles, among whom is Judas, who was slain upon the cross. Their names are: Andrew and Peter his brother, fishermen; Barnabas, who wrote this, with Matthew the publican, who sat at the receipt of custom; John and James, sons of Zebedee; Thaddaeus and Judas; Bartholomew and Philip; James, and Judas Iscariot the traitor. To these he always revealed the divine secrets; but the Iscariot Judas he made his dispenser of that which was given in alms, but he stole the tenth part of everything.

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Chapter 16

One day Jesus called together his disciples and went up on to the mountain, and when he had sat down there his disciples came near unto him; and he opened his mouth and taught them, saying: 'Great are the benefits which God hath bestowed on us wherefore it is necessary that we should serve him with truth of heart. And forasmuch as new wine is put into new vessels, even so ought ye to become new men, if ye will contain the new doctrine that shall come out of my mouth. Verily I say unto you, that even as a man cannot see with his eyes the heaven and the earth at one and the same time, so it is impossible to love God and the world.

'No man can in any wise serve two masters that are at enmity one with the other: for if the one shall love you, the other will hate you. Even so I tell you in truth that ye cannot serve God and the world for the world lieth in falsehood, covetousness, and malignity. Ye cannot therefore find rest in the world, but rather persecution and loss. Wherefore serve God and despise the world, for from me ye shall find rest for your souls, Hear my words for I speak unto you in truth.

'Verily, blessed are they that mourn this earthly life, for they shall be comforted.

'Blessed are the poor who truly hate the delights of the world, for they shall abound in the delights of the kingdom of God.

'Verily, blessed are they that eat at the table of God, for the angels shall minister unto them.

'Ye are journeying as pilgrims. Doth the pilgrim encumber himself with palaces and fields and other earthly matters upon the way? Assuredly not: but he beareth things light and prized for their usefulness and convenience upon the road. This now should be an example unto you; and if ye desire another example I will give it you, in order that ye may do all that I tell you.

'Weigh not down your hearts with earthly desires, saying:

"Who shall clothe us?" or "Who shall give us to eat?" But behold the flowers and the trees, with the birds, which God our Lord clotheth and nourisheth with greater glory than all the glory of Solomon. And he is able to nourish you, even God who created you and called you to his service; who for forty years caused the manna to fall from heaven for his people Israel in the wilderness, and did not suffer their clothing to wax old or perish, they being six hundred and forty thousand men, besides women and children. Verily I say unto you, that heaven and earth shall fail, yet shall not fail his mercy unto them that fear him. But the rich of the world in their prosperity are hungry and perish. There was a rich man whose incomings increased, and he said, "What shall I do, O my soul? I will pull down my barns because they are small, and I will build new and greater ones: therefore thou shalt triumph my soul!" Oh, wretched ban! for that night he died. He ought to have been mindful of the poor, and to have made himself friends with the alms of unrighteous riches of this world; for they bring treasures in the kingdom of heaven.

'Tell me, I pray you, if ye should give your money into the bank to a publican, and he should give unto you tenfold and twentyfold, would ye not give to such a man everything that ye had? But I say unto you, verily, that whatsoever ye shall give and shall forsake for love of God, ye receive it back an hundred-fold, and life everlasting. See then how much ye ought to be content to serve God.

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Chapter 17

When Jesus had said this, Philip answered: 'We are content to serve God, but we desire, however, to know God, for Isaiah the prophet said: "Verily thou art a hidden God," and God said to Moses his servant: "I am that which I am."

Jesus answered: 'Philip, God is a good without which there is naught good; God is a being without which there is naught that is; God is a life without which there is naught that liveth; so great that he filleth all and is everywhere. He alone hath no equal. He hath had no beginning, nor will he ever have an end, but to everything hath he given a beginning, and to everything shall he give an end. He hath no father nor mother; he hath no sons. nor brethren. nor companions. And because God hath no body, therefore he eateth not, sleepeth not, dieth not, walketh not, moveth not, but abideth eternally without human similitude, for that he is incorporeal, uncompounded, immaterial, of the most simple substance. He is so good that he loveth goodness only; he is so just that when he punisheth or pardoneth it cannot be gainsaid. In short, I say unto thee, Philip, that here on earth thou canst not see him nor know him perfectly; but in his kingdom thou shalt see him for ever: wherein consisteth all our happiness and glory.'

Philip answered: 'Master, what sayest thou? It is surely written in Isaiah that God is our father; how, then, hath he no sons?'

Jesus answered: 'There are written in the prophets many parables, wherefore thou oughtest not to attend to the letter, but to the sense. For all the prophets, that are one hundred and forty-four thousand, whom God hath sent into the world, have spoken darkly. But after me shall come the Splendour of all the prophets and holy ones, and shall shed light upon the darkness of all that the prophets have said, because he is the messenger of God' And having said this, Jesus sighed and said: 'Have mercy on Israel, O Lord God; and look with pity upon Abraham and upon his seed, in order that they may serve thee with truth of heart.

His disciples answered: 'So be it, O Lord our God!'

Jesus said: 'Verily I say unto you, the scribes and doctors have made void the law of God with their false prophecies, contrary to the prophecies of the true prophets of God: wherefore God is wrath with the house of Israel and with this faithless generation.' His disciples wept at these words, and said: 'Have mercy, O God, have mercy upon the temple and upon the holy city, and give it not into contempt of the nations that they despise not thy holy covenant.' Jesus answered: 'So be it, Lord God of our fathers.'

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Chapter 39

Then said John: 'Well have you spoken, O master, but we lack to know how man sinned through pride.'

Jesus answered: "When God has expelled Satan, and the angel Gabriel had purified that mass of earth whereon Satan spat, God created everything that lives, both of the animals that fly and of them that walk and swim, and he adorned the world with all that it has. One day Satan approached to the gates of paradise, and, seeing the horses eating grass, he announced to them that if that mass of earth should receive a soul there would be for them grievous labour; and that therefore it would be to their advantage to trample that piece of earth in such wise that it should be no more good for anything. The horses aroused themselves and impetuously set themselves to run over that piece of earth which lay among lilies and roses. Whereupon God gave spirit to that unclean portion of earth upon which lay the spittle of Satan, which Gabriel had taken up from the mass; and raised up the dog, who, barking, filled the horses with fear, and they fled. Then God gave his soul to man, while all the holy angels sang: "Blessed be your holy name, O God our Lord."

'Adam, having sprung upon his feet, saw in the air a writing that shone like the sun, which said: "There is only one God, and Muhammad is the Messenger of God." Whereupon Adam opened his mouth and said: "I thank you, O Lord my God, that you have deigned to create me; but tell me. I pray you, what means the message of these words: "Muhammad is Messenger of God. Have there been other men before me?"

'Then said God: "Be you welcome, O my servant Adam. . I tell you that you are the first man whom I have created. And he whom you have seen [mentioned] is your son, who shall come into the world many years hence, and shall be my Messenger, for whom I have created all things; who shall give light to the world when he shall come; whose soul was set in a celestial splendour; sixty thousand years before I made anything."

Adam besought God, saying: "Lord, grant me this writing upon the nails of the fingers of my hands." Then God gave to the first man upon his thumbs that writing; upon the thumb-nail of the right hand it said: "There is only one God," and upon the thumb-nail of the left it said: "Muhammad is Messenger of God." Then with fatherly affection the first man kissed those words, and rubbed his eyes, and said: "Blessed be that day when you shall come to the world."

Seeing the man alone, God said: "It is not well that he should remain alone." Wherefore he made him to sleep, and took a rib from near his heart, filling the place with flesh. Of that rib made he Eve, and gave her to Adam for his wife. He set the twain of them as lords of Paradise, to whom he said: "Behold I give to you every fruit to eat, except the apples and the corn" whereof he said: "Beware that in no wise you eat of these fruits, for you shall become unclean, insomuch that I shall not suffer. You to remain here, but shall drive you forth, and you shall suffer great miseries."

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Chapter 40

When Satan had knowledge of this he became mad with indignation, and so he drew near to the gate of paradise where a horrid serpent with legs like a camel, and nails on his feet cut like a razor on every side. To him said the enemy: "Suffer me to enter paradise."

The serpent answered: "And How shall I suffer thee to enter, God has commanded me to drive thee out?" Satan answered: "Thou seest how much God loveth thee; since he hath set thee outside of paradise to keep guard over a lump of clay, which is man. Wherefore, if thou bring me into paradise I will make thee so terrible that every one shall flee thee, and so at thy pleasure thou shalt go and stay."

Then the serpent said: "And how shall I set you within?"

Satan said, 'You are great: therefore, open your mouth, and I will enter into your belly, and so [when] you enter into paradise [you] shall place me near to those two lumps of clay that are newly walking upon the earth.'

Then the serpent did so, and placed Satan near Eve, for Adam, her husband, was sleeping. Satan presented himself before the woman like a beauteous angel, and said to her: 'Why do you not eat of those apples and corn?'

Eve answered: 'Our God has said to us that [if we] eat [them] we shall be unclean, and he will drive us from paradise.'

Satan answered: 'He does not speak the truth! You must know that God is wicked and envious, and suffers no equals, but keeps every one as a slave. [This is] why he has said this [to you]; in order that you may not become equal to him. But if you and your companion do according to my counsel, you shall eat of those fruits as [you eat] of the other [fruits], and you shall not remain subject to others but like God you shall know good and evil, and you shall do whatever you please, because you shall be equal to God.'

Then Eve took and ate of those [fruits], and when her husband awoke she told [him everything] that Satan had said; and he took and ate the fruit [when] his wife offered them to him. But, as the food was going down, he remembered the words of God, and, wishing to stop the food, he put his hand into his throat, where every man has the mark.

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Chapter 41

Then both of them knew that they were naked, and, being ashamed, they took fig leaves and made a clothing for their secret parts. When midday was passed, God appeared to them, and called Adam, saying: 'Adam, where are you?'

He answered: 'Lord, I hid myself from your presence because my wife and I are naked, and so we are ashamed to present ourselves before you.'

Then God said: 'And who has robbed you of your innocence, unless you have eaten the fruit [that makes you] unclean, and will not be able to abide [any] longer in paradise?'

Adam answered: 'O Lord, the wife whom you have given me [urged] me to eat [it] and so I have eaten it.'

Then God said to the woman: 'Why did you give [this] food to your husband?'

Eve answered: 'Satan deceived me, and so I ate [the fruit].'

'And how did that reprobate enter into [the garden]?' said God.

Eve answered: 'A serpent that stands at the northern gate brought him near to me.'

Then God said to Adam: 'Because you have [listened to] your wife and have eaten the fruit, cursed be the earth in your works; it shall bring forth brambles and thorns for you, and you shall eat bread by the sweat of your face. Remember that you are earth, and to earth you return.'

And he spoke to Eve, saying: 'And you who did [listen] to Satan, and gave the food to your husband, shall abide under the dominion of man, who shall keep you as a slave, and you shall bear children with travail.'

And having called the serpent, God called the angel Michael, who holds the sword of God, [and] said: 'First drive this wicked serpent forth from paradise, and when outside cut off his legs: for if he wants to walk, he must trail his body upon the earth.' Afterwards God called Satan, who came laughing, and he said to him: 'Because you, reprobate, have deceived [Adam and Eve] and have made them unclean, I will that every uncleanness [from] them and [from] all their children - [of which] they shall be truly penitent and shall serve me - in going forth from their body shall enter through your mouth, and so shall you be satiated with uncleanness.'

Satan then gave a horrible roar, and said: 'Since you will to make me [continually] worse, I will make me that which I shall be able!'

Then said God: 'Depart, cursed one, from my presence!' Then Satan departed, and God said to Adam [and] Eve, who were both weeping: 'Go forth from paradise, and do penance, and do not let your hope fail, for I will send your son so that your seed shall lift the dominion of Satan from off the human race: for I will give all things to he who shall come, my Messenger.'

God hid himself [from Adam and Eve], and the angel Michael drove them forth from paradise. Then, Adam, turning around, saw written above the gate, There is only one God, and Muhammad is Messenger of God. Weeping, he said: 'May it be pleasing to God, O my son, that you come quickly and draw us out of misery.'

And thus," said Jesus, "Satan and Adam sinned through pride, the one by despising man, the other by wishing to make himself equal with God."

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Chapter 42

Then the disciples wept after this discourse, and Jesus was weeping, when they saw many who came to find him, for the chiefs of the priests took counsel among themselves to catch him in his talk. Wherefore they sent the Levites and some of the scribes to question him, saying: "Who are you?"

Jesus confessed, and said the truth: "I am not the Messiah."

They said: "Are you Elijah or Jeremiah, or any of the ancient prophets?"

Jesus answered: "No."

Then said they: "Who are you? Say, in order that we may give testimony to those who sent us."

Then Jesus said: "I am a voice that cries through all Judea, and cries: "Prepare you the way for the messenger of the Lord," even as it is written in Esaias."

They said: "If you be not the Messiah nor Elijah, or any prophet, wherefore do you preach new doctrine, and make yourself of more account than the Messiah?"

Jesus answered: "The miracles which God works by my hands show that I speak that which God wills; nor indeed do I make myself to be accounted as him of whom you speak. For I am not worthy to unloose the ties of the hosen or the ratchets of the shoes of the Messenger of God whom you call "Messiah," who was made before me, and shall come after me, and shall bring the words of truth, so that his faith shall have no end."

The Levites and scribes departed in confusion, and recounted all to the chiefs of the priests, who said: "He has the devil on his back who recounts all to him."

Then Jesus said to his disciples: "Truly I say to you, that the chiefs and the elders of our people seek occasion against me."

Then said Peter: "Therefore go not you any more into Jerusalem."

Therefore said Jesus to him: "You are foolish, and know not what you say, for it is necessary that I should suffer many persecutions, because so have suffered all the prophets and holy one of God. But fear not, for there be that are with us and there be that are against us."

And having said this, Jesus departed and went to the mount Tabor, and there ascended with him Peter and James and John his brother, with him who writes this. Whereupon there shone a great light above him, and his garments became white like snow and his face glistened as the sun, and lo! there came Moses and Elijah speaking with Jesus concerning all that needs must come upon our race and upon the holy city.

Peter spoke, saying: "Lord, it is good to be here. Therefore, if you will, we will make here three tabernacles, one for you and one for Moses and the other for Elijah." And while he spoke they were covered with a white cloud, and they heard a voice saying: "Behold my servant, in whom I am well pleased; hear you him."

The disciples were filled with fear, and fell with their face upon the earth as dead. Jesus went down and raised up his disciples, saying: "Fear not, for God loves you, and has done this in order that you may believe on my words."


Chapter 43

Jesus went down to the eight disciples who were awaiting him below. And the four narrated to the eight all that they had seen: and so there departed that day from their heart all doubt of Jesus, save [from] Judas Iscariot, who believed nothing. Jesus seated himself at the foot of the mountain, and they ate ofthe wild fruits, because they had not bread.

Then said Andrew: "You have told us many things of the Messiah, therefore of your kindness tell us clearly all." And in like manner the other disciples besought him.

Accordingly Jesus said: "Everyone that works works for an end in which he finds satisfaction. Wherefore I say to you that God, truly because he is perfect, has not need of satisfaction, seeing that he has satisfaction himself. And so, willing to work, he created before all things the soul of his Messenger, for whom he determined to create the whole, in order that the creatures should find joy and blessedness in God, whence his Messenger should take delight in all his creatures, which he has appointed to be his slaves. And wherefore is this, so save because thus he has willed?

Truly I say to you, that every prophet when he is come has borne to one nation only the mark of the mercy of God. And so their words were not extended save to that people to which they were sent. But the Messenger of God, when he shall come, God shall give to him as it were the seal of his hand, insomuch that he shall carry salvation and mercy to all the nations of the world that shall receive his doctrine. He shall come with power upon the ungodly, and shall destroy idolatry, insomuch that he shall make Satan confounded; for so promised God to Abraham, saying: "Behold, in your seed I will bless all the tribes of the earth; and as you have broken in pieces the idols, O Abraham, even so shall your seed do.""

James answered: "O master, tell us in whom this promise was made; for the Jews say "in Isaac," and the Ishmaelites say "in Ishmael"."

Jesus answered: "David, whose son was he, and of what lineage?" James answered: "Of Isaac; for Isaac was father of Jacob, and Jacob was father of Judah, of whose lineage is David."

Then Jesus said: "And the Messenger of God when he shall come, of what lineage will he be?"

The disciples answered: "Of David."

Whereupon Jesus said: "You deceive yourselves; for David in spirit calls him lord, saying thus: "God said to my lord, sit you on my right hand until I make your enemies your footstool. God shall send forth your rod which shall have lordship in the midst of your enemies." If the Messenger of God whom you call Messiah were son of David, how should David call him lord? Believe me, for truly I say to you, that the promise was made in Ishmael, not in Isaac."

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Chapter 44

The disciples said: "O master, it is written in the Book of Moses, that the promise was made in Isaac."

Jesus answered with a groan: "It is so written, but Moses did not write it, nor Joshua, but rather our rabbins, who do not fear God! Truly I say to you, that if you consider the words of the angel Gabriel, you shall discover the malice of our scribes and doctors. For the angel said: "Abraham, all the world shall know how God loves you; but how shall the world know the love that you bear to God? Assuredly it is necessary that you do something for love of God." Abraham answered: 'Behold the servant of God, ready to do all that which God shall will.'

Then spoke God, saying to Abraham: "Take your son, your firstborn Ishmael, and come up the mountain to sacrifice him." How is Isaac firstborn, if when Isaac was born Ishmael was seven years old?

Then said the disciples: "Clear is the deception of our doctors: therefore tell us you the truth, because we know that you are sent from God."

Then answered Jesus: "Truly I say to you, that Satan ever seeks to annul the laws of God; and therefore he with his followers, hypocrites and evil-doers, the former with false doctrine, the latter with lewd living, to day have contaminated almost all things, so that scarcely is the truth found. Woe to the hypocrites! for the praises of this world shall turn for them into insults and torments in hell.

"I therefore say to you that the Messenger of God is a splendour that shall give gladness to nearly all that God has made, for he is adorned with the spirit of understanding and of counsel, the spirit of wisdom and might, the spirit of fear and love, the spirit of prudence and temperance, he is adorned with the spirit of charity and mercy, the spirit of justice and Piety, the spirit of gentleness and patience, which he has received from God three times more than he has given to all his creatures. O blessed time, when he shall come to the world! Believe me that I have seen him and have done. him reverence, even as every prophet has seen him: seeing that of his spirit God gives to them prophecy. And when I saw him my soul was filled with consolation, saying: "O Muhammad, God be with you, and may he make me worthy to untie, your shoelatchet, for obtaining this I shall be a great prophet and holy one of God."

And having said this, Jesus rendered his thanks to God.

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Chapter 53

"Before that day shall come," said Jesus, "great destruction shall come upon the world, for there shall be war so cruel and pitiless that the father shall slay the son, and the son shall slay the father by reason of the factions of peoples. Wherefore the cities shall be annihilated, and the country shall become desert. Such pestilences shall come that none shall be found to bear the dead to burial, so that they shall be left as food for beasts. To those who remain upon the earth God shall send such scarcity that bread shall be valued above gold, and they shall eat all manner of unclean things. O miserable age, in which scarce any one shall be heard to say: "I have sinned, have mercy on me, O God"; but with horrible voices they shall blaspheme him who is glorious and blessed for ever. After this, as that day draws near, for fifteen days, shall come every day a horrible sign over the inhabitants of the earth. The first day the sun shall run its course in heaven without light, but black as the dye of cloth; and it shall give groans, as a father who groans for a son near to death. The second day the moon shall be turned into blood, and blood shall come upon the earth like dew. The third day the stars shall be seen to fight among themselves like an army of enemies. The fourth day the stones and rocks shall dash against each other as cruel enemies. The fifth day every plant and herb shall weep blood. The sixth day the sea shall rise without leaving its place to the height of one hundred and fifty cubits, and shall stand all day like a wall. The seventh day it shall on the contrary sink so low as scarcely to be seen. The eighth day the birds and the animals of the earth and of the water shall gather themselves close together, and shall give forth roars and cries. The ninth day there shall be a hailstorm so horrible that it shall kill in such wise that scarcely the tenth part of the living shall escape. The tenth day shall come such horrible lightning and thunder that the third part of the mountains shall be split and scorched. The eleventh day every river shall run backwards, and shall run blood and not water. The twelfth day every created thing shall groan and cry. The thirteenth day the heaven shall be rolled up like a book, and it shall rain fire, so that every living thing shall die. The fourteenth day there shall be an earthquake so horrible that the tops of the mountains shall fly through the air like birds, and all the earth shall become a plain. The fifteenth day the holy angels shall die, and God alone shall remain alive; to whom be honour and glory."

And having said this, Jesus smote his face with both his hands, and then smote the ground with his head. And having raised his head, he said: "Cursed be every one who shall insert into my sayings that I am the son of God." At these words the disciples fell down as dead, whereupon Jesus lifted them up, saying: "Let us fear God now, if we would not be affrighted in that day."

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Chapter 54

When these signs be passed, there shall be darkness over the world forty years, God alone being alive, to whom be honour and glory forever. When the forty years have passed, God shall give life to his Messenger, who shall rise again like the sun, but resplendent as a thousand suns. He shall sit, and shall not speak, for he shall be as it were beside himself. God shall raise again the four angels favoured of God, who shall seek the Messenger of God, and, having found him, shall station themselves on the four sides of the place to keep watch upon him. Next shall God give life to all the angels, who shall come like bees circling round the Messenger of God. Next shall God give life to all his prophets, who, following Adam, shall go every one to kiss the hand of the Messenger of God, committing themselves to his protection. Next shall God give life to all the elect, who shall cry out: "O Muhammad be mindful of us!" At whose cries pity shall awake in the Messenger of God, and he shall consider what he ought to do, fearing for their salvation. Next shall God give life to every created thing and they shall return to their former existence, but every one shall besides possess the power of speech. Next shall God give life to all the reprobates, at whose resurrection, by reason of their hideousness, all the creatures of God shall be afraid, and shall cry: "Let not your mercy forsake us, O Lord our God." After this shall God cause Satan to be raised up, at whose aspect every creature shall be as dead, for fear of the horrid form of his appearance. May it please God," said Jesus, "that I behold not that monster on that day. The Messenger of God alone shall not be affrighted by such shapes, because he shall fear God only.

"Then the angel, at the sound of whose trumpet all shall be raised, shall sound his trumpet again, saying: "Come to the judgment, O creatures, for your Creator wills to judge you." Then shall appear in the midst of heaven over the valley of Jehoshaphat a glittering throne over which shall come a white cloud, whereupon the angels shall cry out: "Blessed be you our God, who has created us and saved us from the fall of Satan." Then the Messenger of God shall fear, for that he shall perceive that none has loved God as he should. For he who would get in change a piece of gold must have sixty mites; wherefore, if he have but one mite he cannot change it. But if the Messenger of God shall fear, what shall the ungodly do who are full of wickedness?"


Chapter 55

The Messenger of God shall go to collect all the prophets, to whom he shall speak praying them to go with him to pray God for the faithful. And every one shall excuse himself for fear; nor, as God lives, would I go there, knowing what I know. Then God, seeing this, shall remind his Messenger how he created all things for love of him, and so his fear shall leave him, and he shall go near to the throne with love and reverence, while the angels sing: "Blessed be your holy name O God, our God."

And when he has drawn near to the throne, God shall open [his mind] to his Messenger, even as a friend to a friend when for a long while they have not met. The first to speak shall be the Messenger of God, who shall say: "I adore and love you, O my God, and with all my heart and soul I give you thanks for that you did vouchsafe to create me to be your servant, and made all for love of me, so that I might love you for all things and in all things and above all things; therefore let all your creatures praise you, O my God." Then God shall say: "We give you thanks, O Lord, and bless your holy name." Truly I say to you, the demons and reprobates with Satan shall then weep so that more water shall flow from the eyes of one of them than is in the river of Jordan. Yet shall they not see God.

"And God shall speak to his Messenger, saying: "You are welcome, O my faithful servant; therefore ask what you will, for you shall obtain all." The Messenger of God shall answer. "O Lord, I remember that when you did create me, you said that you had willed to make for love of me the world and paradise, and angels and men, that they might glorify you by me your servant. Therefore, Lord God, merciful and just. I pray you that you recollect your promise made to your servant."

And God shall make answer even as a friend who jests with a friend, and shall say: 'Have you witnesses of this, my friend Muhammad?' And with reverence he shall say: "Yes, Lord." Then God shall answer: "Go, call them, O Gabriel." The angel Gabriel shall come to the Messenger of God, and shall say: "Lord who are your 'witnesses?" The Messenger of God shall answer: "They are Adam, Abraham, Ishmael, Moses, David, and Jesus son of Mary."

"Then shall the angel departs and he shall call the aforesaid witnesses, who with fear shall go thither. And when they are present God shall say to them: Remember you that which my Messenger affirms?" They shall reply: "What thing, O Lord?" God shall say: "That I have made all things for love of him, so that all things might praise me by him." Then every one of them shall answer: "There are with us three witnesses better than we are, O Lord." And God shall reply: "Who are these three witnesses?" Then Moses shall say: "The book that you gave to me is the first"; and David shall say: "The book that you gave to me is the second"; and he who speaks to you shall say: "Lord the whole world, deceived by Satan, that I was your son and your fellow, but the book that you gave me said truly that I am your servant; and that book confesses that which your Messenger affirms." Then shall the Messenger of God speak, and shall say: "Thus says the book that you gave me O Lord." And when the Messenger of God has said this, God shall speak, saying: ,All that I have now done, I have done in order that every one should know how much I love you." And when he has thus spoken, God shall give to his Messenger a book, in which are written all the names of the elect of God. Wherefore every creature shall do reverence to God, saying: "To you alone O God, be glory and honour, because you have given us to your Messenger.

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Chapter 56

God shall open the book in the hand of his Messenger, and his Messenger reading therein shall call all the angels and prophets and all the elect, and on the forehead of each one shall be written the mark of the Messenger of God. And in the book shall be written the glory of paradise.

Then shall each pass to the right hand of God; next to whom shall sit the Messenger of God. and the prophets shall sit near him, and the saints shall sit near the prophets, and the blessed near the saints, and the angel shall then sound the trumpet, and shall call Satan to judgment.

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Chapter 57

Then that miserable one shall come, and with greatest contumely shall be accused of every creature. Wherefore God shall call the angel Michael, who shall strike him one hundred thousand times with the sword of God. He shall strike Satan, and every stroke is heavy as ten hells, and he shall be the first to be cast into the abyss. The angel shall call his followers, and they shall in like manner be abused and accused. Wherefore the angel Michael, by commission from God, shall strike some a hundred times, some fifty, some twenty, some ten, some five. And then shall they descend into the abyss, because God shall say to them: "Hell is your dwelling-place, O cursed ones."

After that shall be called to judgment all the unbelievers and reprobates, against whom shall first arise all creatures inferior to man, testifying before God how they have served these men, and how the same have outraged God and his creatures. And the prophets every one shall arise, testifying against them; wherefore they shall be condemned by God to infernal flames. Truly I say to you, that no idle lord or thought shall pass unpunished in that tremendous day. Truly I say to you, that the hair-shirt shall shine like the sun, and every louse a man shall have borne for love of God shall be turned into pearl. O, thrice and four times blessed are the poor, who in true poverty shall have served God from the heart, for in this world are they destitute of worldly cares, and shall therefore be freed from many sins, and in that day they shall not have to render an account of how they have spent the riches of the world, but they shall be rewarded for their patience and their poverty. Truly I say to you, that if the world knew his it would choose the hair-shirt sooner than purple, lice sooner than gold, fasts sooner than feasts.

When all have been examined, God shall say to his Messenger: "Behold, O my friend, their wickedness, how great it has been, for I their creator did employ all created things in their service and in all things have they dishonoured me. It is most just, therefore, that I have no mercy on them." The Messenger of God shall answer: "It is true, Lord, our glorious God, not one of your friends and servants could ask you to have mercy on them; no, I your servant before all ask justice against them."

And he having said these words, all the angels and prophets, with all the elect of God - no, why say I the elect? - truly I say to you, that spiders and flies, stones and sand shall cry out against the impious, and shall demand justice.

Then shall God cause to return to earth every living soul inferior to man, and he shall send the impious to hell. Who, in going, shall see again that earth, to which dogs and horses and other vile animals shall be reduced. Wherefore shall they say: "O Lord God, cause us also to return to that earth." But that which they ask shall not be granted to them."

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Chapter 58

While Jesus was speaking the disciples wept bitterly. And Jesus wept many tears.

Then after he had wept, John spoke: "O master, we desire to know two things. The one is, how it is possible that the Messenger of God, who is full of mercy and pity, should have no pity on reprobates that day, seeing that they are of the same clay as himself? The other is, how is it to be understood that the sword of Michael is [as] heavy as ten hells? Is there more than one hell?" Jesus replied: "Have you not heard what David the prophet says, how the just shall laugh at the destruction of sinners, and shall deride him with these words, saying: I saw the man who put his hope in his strength and his riches, and forgot God. Truly, therefore, I say to you, that Abraham shall deride his father, and Adam [shall deride] all reprobate men: and this shall be because the elect shall rise again so perfect and united to God that they shall not conceive in their minds the small[est] thought against his justice. Each of them shall demand justice, and above all the Messenger of God. As God lives, in whose presence I stand, though now I weep for pity of mankind, on that day I shall demand justice without mercy against those who despise my words, and most of all against those who defile my gospel.

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Chapter 59

Hell is one, O my disciples, and in it the damned shall suffer punishment eternally. Yet has it seven rooms or regions, one deeper than the other, and he who goes to the deep shall suffer greater punishment. Yet my words [are] true concerning the sword of the angel Michael, for he that commits but one sin merits hell, and he that commits two sins merits two hells. Therefore in one hell the reprobates shall feel punishment as though they were in ten, or in a hundred or in a thousand; and the omnipotent God, through his power and by reason of his justice, shall cause Satan to suffer as though he were in ten hundred thousand hells, and the rest each one according to his wickedness."

Then Peter answered: "O master, truly the justice of God is great, and today this discourse has made you sad; therefore, we pray you, rest, and tomorrow tell us what hell is like." Jesus answered: "O Peter, you tell me to rest; O Peter, you do not know what you say, [or] else you would not have spoken thus. Truly I say to you, that rest in this present life is the poison of piety and the fire which consumes every good work. Have you forgotten how Solomon, God's prophet, with all the prophets, has reproved sloth? It is true that he says: The idle will not work the soil for fear of the cold, therefore in summer shall he beg. [And for this reason] he said: All that your hand can do, do it without rest. And what says Job, the most innocent friend of God: As the bird is born to fly, man is born to work. Truly I say to you, I hate rest above all things."

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Chapter 60

Hell is one, and is contrary to paradise, as winter is contrary to summer, and cold to heat. Therefore, he who would describe the misery of hell must have seen the paradise of God's delights.

O place accursed by God's justice for the malediction of the faithless and reprobate, of which Job, the friend of God, said: There is no order there, but everlasting fear! And Isaiah the prophet, against the reprobate, says: Their flame shall not be quenched nor their worm die. And David our father, weeping said: Then lightning and bolts and brimstone and great tempest shall rain upon them." O miserable sinners, how loathsome delicate meats, costly raiment, soft couches, and [the] concord of sweet song shall seem to them! How sick shall raging hunger, burning flames, scorching cinders, and cruel torments with bitter weeping make them!"

And then Jesus uttered a lamentable groan, saying: "Truly, it is better never to have been formed than to suffer such cruel torments, for imagine a man suffering torments in every part of his body, who has no one to show him compassion, but is mocked by everyone; tell me, would not this be great pain?"

The disciples answered: "The greatest."

Then Jesus said: "This is a delight [in comparison] to hell. For I tell you in truth, that if God should place in one balance all the pain which all men have suffered in this world and shall suffer till the Day of Judgment, and in the other [balance] one single hour of the pain of hell, the reprobates would without doubt choose the worldly tribulations, for the worldly [tribulations] come from the hand of man, but the others from the hand of devils, who are utterly without compassion. O what cruel fire they shall give to miserable sinners! O what bitter cold, which yet shall not temper their flames! What gnashing of teeth and sobbing and weeping! For the Jordan has less water than the tears which shall flow from their eyes every moment. Their tongues shall curse all created things, with their. father and mother, and their Creator, who is blessed for ever."

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Chapter 61

Having said this, Jesus washed himself, with his disciples, according to the Law of God written in the Book of Moses; and then they prayed. And the disciples, seeing [Jesus] sad did not speak at all to him that day, but each stood terror-struck at his words.

Then Jesus, opening his mouth after the evening [prayer], said: * "What father of a family, if he knew that a thief meant to break into his house, would sleep? None surely; for he would watch and stand prepared to slay the thief. Do you not know then that Satan is as a roaring lion that goes about seeking whom he may devour. Thus he seeks to make man sin. Truly I say to you, that if man would act as the merchant he should have no fear in that day, because he would be well prepared. There was a man who gave money to his neighbours that they might trade with it, and the profit should be divided in a just proportion. And some traded well, so that they doubled the money. But some used the money in the service of the enemy of him who gave them the money, speaking evil of him. Tell me now, when the neighbour shall call the debtors to account how shall the matter go? Assuredly he will reward those who traded well, but against the others his anger shall vent itself in reproaches. And then he will punish them according to the Law. As God lives, in whose presence my soul stands, the neighbour is God, who has given to man all that he has, with life itself, so that, [man] living well in this world, God may have praise, and man the glory of paradise. For those who live well double their money by their example, because sinners, seeing their example, are converted to repentance; wherefore men who live well shall be rewarded with a great reward. But wicked sinners, who by their sins halve what God has given them, by their lives spent in the service of Satan the enemy of God, blaspheming God and giving offence to others tell me what shall be their punishment?"

"It shall be without measure," said the disciples.

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Chapter 72

At night Jesus spoke in secret with his disciples, saying: "Truly I say to you that Satan desires to sift you as wheat; but I have besought God for you, and there shall not perish of you save he that lays snares for me." And this he said of Judas, because the angel Gabriel said to him how that Judas had hand with the priests, and reported to them all that Jesus spoke.

With tears drew near to Jesus he who writes this saying: "O master, tell me, who is he that should betray you?"

Jesus answered, saying: "O Barnabas, this is not the hour for you to know him, but soon will be wicked one reveal himself, because I shall depart from the world."

Then wept the apostles, saying: "O master, wherefore will you forsake us? It is much better that we should die than be forsaken of you!"

Jesus answered: "Let not your heart be troubled, neither be you fearful: for I have not created you, but God our creator who has created you will protect you. As for me, I am now come to the world to prepare the way for the Messenger of God, who shall bring salvation to the world. But beware that you be not deceived, for many false prophets shall come, who shall take my words and contaminate my gospel."

Then said Andrew: "Master tell us some sign, that we may know him."

Jesus answered: "He will not come in your time, but will come some years after you, when my gospel shall be annulled, insomuch that there shall be scarcely thirty faithful. At that time God will have mercy on the world, and so he will send his Messenger, over whose head will rest a white cloud, whereby he shall be known of one elect of God, and shall be by him manifested to the world. He shall come with great power against the ungodly, and shall destroy idolatry upon the earth. And it rejoices me because that through him our God shall be known and glorified, and I shall be known to be true; and he will execute vengeance against those who shall say that I am more than man. Truly I say to you that the moon shall minister sleep to him in his boyhood, and when he shall be grown up he shall take her in his hands. Let the world beware of casting him out because he shall slay the idolaters, for many more were slain by Moses, the servant of God, and Joshua, who spared not the cities which they burnt, and slew the children; for to an old wound one applies fire.

"He shall come with truth more clear than that of all the prophets, and shall reprove him who use the world amiss. The towers of the city of our father shall greet one another for joy: and so when idolatry shall be seen to fall to the ground and confess me a man like other men, truly I say to you the Messenger of God shall be come."

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Chapter 73

"Truly I say to you, that if Satan shall try whether you be friends of God - because no one assails his own cities - if Satan should have his will over you he would suffer you to glide at your own pleasure; but because he knows that you be enemies to him he will do every violence to make you perish. But fear not you, for he will be against you as a dog that is chained, because God has heard my prayer."

John answered: "O master, not only for us, but for them that shall believe the gospel, tell us how the ancient tempter lays wait for man."

Jesus answered: "In four ways tempts that wicked one. The first is when he tempts by himself, with thoughts. The second is when he tempts with words and deeds by means of his servants; the third is when he tempts with false doctrine; the fourth is when he tempts with false visions. Now how cautious ought men to be, and all the more according as he has in his favour the flesh of man, which loves sin as he who has fever loves water. Truly I say to you, that if a man fear God he shall have victory over all, as says David his prophet: "God shall give his angels charge over you, who shall keep your ways, so that the devil shall not cause you to stumble. A thousand shall fall on your left hand, and ten thousand on your right hand, so that they shall not come near you."

"Furthermore, our God with great love promised to us by the same David to keep us, saying: "I give to you understanding, which shall teach you; and in your ways wherein you shall walk I will cause My eye to rest upon you."

"But what shall I say? He has said by Isaiah: "Can a mother forget the child of her womb? But I say to you, that when she forget, I will not forget you."

"Tell me, then, who shall fear Satan, having for guard the angels and for protection the living God? Nevertheless, it is necessary, as says the prophet Solomon, that "You, my son, that are come to fear the Lord, prepare your soul for temptations." Truly I say to you, that a man ought to do as the banker who examines money, examining his thoughts, that he sin not against God his creator."

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Chapter 82

Then Jesus gave a sigh and wept, saying: "Woe to you, Judea, for you glory, saying: "The Temple of the Lord, the Temple of the Lord," and live as though there were no God; given over wholly to the pleasures and gains of the world; for this woman in the day of judgment shall condemn you to hell; for this woman seeks to know how to find grace and mercy before God."

And turning to the woman he said: "O woman, you Samaritans worship that which you know not, but we Hebrews worship that which we know. Truly, I say to you, that God is spirit and truth, and so in spirit and in truth must he be worshipped. For the promise of God was made in Jerusalem, in the Temple of Solomon, and not elsewhere. But believe me, a time will come that God will give his mercy in another city, and in every place it will be possible to worship him in truth. And God in every place will have accepted true prayer with mercy.

The woman answered: "We look for the Messiah; when he comes he will teach us."

Jesus answered: "Know you, woman, that the Messiah must come?"

She answered: "Yes, Lord."

Then Jesus rejoiced, and said: "So far as I see, O woman, you are faithful: know therefore that in the faith of the Messiah shall be saved every one that is elect of God; therefore it is necessary that you know the coming of the Messiah."

The woman said: "O Lord, perhaps you are the Messiah."

Jesus answered: "I am indeed sent to the House of Israel as a prophet of salvation; but after me shall come the Messiah, sent of God to all the world; for whom God has made the world. And then through all the world will God be worshipped, and mercy received, insomuch that the year of jubilee, which now comes every hundred years, shall by the Messiah be reduced to every year in every place."

Then the woman left her waterpot and ran to the city to announce all that she had heard from Jesus.


Chapter 83

Whilst the woman was talking with Jesus came his disciples, and marvelled that Jesus was speaking so with a woman. Yet no one said to him: "Why speak you thus with a Samaritan woman?"

Whereupon, when the woman was departed, they said: "Master, come and eat."

Jesus answered: "I must eat other food."

Then said the disciples one to another: "Perhaps some wayfarer has spoken with Jesus and has gone to find him food." And they questioned him who writes this, saying: "Has there been any one here, O Barnabas, who might have brought food to the master?"

Then answered he who writes: "There has not been here any other than the woman whom you saw, who brought this empty vessel to fill it with water." Then the disciples stood amazed, awaiting the issue of the words of Jesus. Whereupon Jesus said: "You know not that the true food is to do the will of God; because it is not bread that sustains man and gives him life, but rather the word of God, by his will. And so for this reason the holy angels eat not, but live nourished only by the will of God. And thus we, Moses and Elijah and yet another, have been forty days and forty nights without any food."

And lifting up his eyes, Jesus said: "How far off is the harvest?"

The disciples answered: "Three months."

Jesus said: "Look now, how the mountain is white with corn; truly I say to you, that today there is a great harvest to be reaped." And then he pointed to the multitude who had come to see him. For the woman having entered into the city had moved all the city, saying: "O men, come and see a new prophet sent of God to the House of Israel"; and she recounted to them all that she had heard from Jesus. When they were come thither they besought Jesus to abide with them; and he entered into the city and abode there two days, healing all the sick, and teaching concerning the kingdom of God.

Then said the citizens to the woman: "We believe more in his words and miracles than we do in what you said; for he is indeed a holy one of God, a prophet sent for the salvation of those that shall believe on him."

After the prayer of midnight; the disciples came near to Jesus, and he said to them: "This night shall be in the time of the Messiah, Messenger of God, the jubilee every year that now comes every hundred years. Therefore I will not that we sleep, but let us make prayer, bowing our head a hundred times, doing reverence to our God, mighty and merciful, who is blessed for evermore, and therefore each time let us say: "I confess you our God alone, that has not had beginning, nor shall ever have end; for by your mercy gave you to all things their beginning, and by your justice you shall give to all an end; that has no likeness among men, because in your infinite goodness you are not subject to motion nor to any accident. Have mercy on us, for you have created us, and we are the works of your hand.""

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Chapter 84

Having made the prayer, Jesus said: "Let us give thanks to God because he has given to us this night great mercy; for that he has made to come back the time that needs must pass in the night, in that we have made prayer in union with the Messenger of God. And I have heard his voice."

The disciples rejoiced greatly at hearing this, and said: "Master, teach us some precepts this night."

Then Jesus said: "Have you ever seen dung mixed with balsam?"

They answered: "No, Lord, for no one is so mad as to do this thing."

"Now I tell you that there be in the world greater madmen, said Jesus, "because with the service of God they mingle the service of the world. So much so that many of blameless life have been deceived of Satan, and while praying have mingled with their prayer worldly business, whereupon they have become at that time abominable in the sight of God. Tell me, when you wash yourselves for prayer, do you take care that no unclean thing touch you? Yes, assuredly. But what do you when you are making prayer? You wash your soul from sins through the mercy of God. Would you be willing then, while you are making prayer, to speak of worldly things? Take care not to do so, for every worldly word becomes dung of the devil upon the soul of him that speaks."

Then the disciples trembled, because he spoke with vehemence of spirit; and they said: "O master, what shall we do if when we are making prayer a friend shall come to speak to us?"

Jesus answered: "Suffer him to wait, and finish the prayer."

Bartholomew said: "But what if he shall be offended and go his way, when he see that we speak not with him?"

Jesus answered: "If he shall be offended, believe me he will not be a friend of yours nor a believer, but rather an unbeliever and a companion of Satan. Tell me, if you went to speak with a stable boy of Herod, and found him speaking into Herod's ears, would you be offended if he made you to wait?' No, assuredly; but you would be comforted at seeing your friend in favour with the king. Is this true?" said Jesus.

The disciples answered: "It is most true."

Then Jesus said: "Truly I say to you, that every one when he prays speaks with God. Is it then right that you should leave speaking with God in order to speak with man? Is it right that your friend should for this cause be offended, because you have more reverence for God than for him? Believe me that if he shall be offended when you make him wait, he is a good servant of the evil. For this desires the devil, that God should be forsaken for man. As God lives, in every good work he that fears God ought to separate himself from the works of the world, so as not to corrupt the good work."

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Chapter 95

Accordingly the governor and the priest and the king prayed Jesus that in order to quiet the people he should mount up into a lofty place and speak to the people. Then went up Jesus on to one of the twelve stones which Joshua made the twelve tribes take up from the midst of Jordan, when all Israel passed over there dry shod; and he said with a loud voice: "Let our priest go up into a high place whence he may confirm my words." Thereupon the priest went up thither; to whom Jesus said distinctly, so that everyone might hear: "It is written in the testament and covenant of the living God that our God has no beginning, neither shall he ever have an end."

The priest answered: "Even so is it written therein."

Jesus said: "It is written there that our God by his word alone has created all things."

"Even so it is," said the priest.

Jesus said: "It is written there that God is invisible and hidden from the mind of man, seeing he is incorporeal and uncomposed, without variableness."

"So is it, truly" said the priest.

Jesus said: "It is written there how that the heaven of heavens cannot contain him, seeing that our God is infinite."

"So said Solomon the prophet," said the priest, "O Jesus."

Jesus said: "It is written there that God has no need, forasmuch as he eats not, sleeps not, and suffers not from any deficiency."

"So is it," said the priest.

Jesus said: "It is written there that our God is everywhere, and that there is not any other god but he, who strikes down and makes whole, and does all that pleases him."

"So is it written," replied the priest.

Then Jesus, having lifted up his hands, said: "Lord our God, this is my faith wherewith I shall come to your judgment: in testimony against every one that shall believe the contrary." And turning himself towards the people, he said: "Repent, for from all that of which the priest has said that it is written in the Book of Moses, the covenant of God for ever, you may perceive your sin; for that I am a visible man and a morsel of clay that walks upon the earth, mortal as are other men. And I have had a beginning, and shall have an end, and [am] such that I cannot create a fly over again."

Thereupon the people raised their voices weeping, and said: "We have sinned, Lord our God, against you; have mercy upon us. And they prayed Jesus, every one, that he would pray for the safety of the holy city, that our God in his anger should not give it over to be trodden down of the nations. Thereupon Jesus, having lifted up his hands, prayed for the holy city and for the people of God, every one crying: "So be it," "Amen."

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Chapter 96

When the prayer was ended, the priest said with a loud voice: "Stay, Jesus, for we need to know who you are, for the quieting of our nation."

Jesus answered: "I am Jesus, son of Mary, of the seed of David, a man that is mortal and fears God, and I seek that to God be given honour and glory."

The priest answered: "In the Book of Moses it is written that our God must send us the Messiah, who shall come to announce to us that which God wills, and shall bring to the world the mercy of God. Therefore I pray you tell us the truth, are you the Messiah of God whom we expect?"

Jesus answered: "It is true that God has so promised, but indeed I am not he, for he is made before me, and shall come after me."

The priest answered: "By your words and signs at any rate we believe you to be a prophet and an holy one of God, wherefore I pray you in the name of all Judea and Israel that you for love of God should tell us in what wise the Messiah will come.


Chapter 97

Jesus answered: "As God lives, in whose presence my soul stands, I am not the Messiah whom all the tribes of the earth expect, even as God promised to our father Abraham, saying: "In your seed will I bless all the tribes of the earth." But when God shall take me away from the world, Satan will raise again this accursed sedition, by making the impious believe that I am God and son of God, whence my words and my doctrine shall be contaminated, insomuch that scarcely shall there remain thirty faithful ones: whereupon God will have mercy upon the world, and will send his Messenger for whom he has made all things who shall come from the south with power, and shall destroy the idols with the idolaters who shall take away the dominion from Satan which he has over men. He shallbring with him the mercy of God for salvation of them that shall believe in him, and blessed is he who shall believe his words.

"Unworthy though I am to untie his hosen, I have received grace and mercy from God to see him."

Then answered the priest, with the governor and the king, saying: "Distress not yourself, O Jesus, holy one of God, because in our time shall not this sedition be any more, seeing that we will write to the sacred Roman senate in such wise that by imperial decree none shall any more call you God or son of God."

Then Jesus said: "With your words I am not consoled, because where you hope for light darkness shall come; but my consolation is in the coming of the Messenger, who shall destroy every false opinion of me, and his faith shall spread and shall take hold of the whole world, for so has God promised to Abraham our father. And that which gives me consolation is that his faith shall have no end, but shall be kept inviolate by God."

The priest answered: "After the coming of the Messenger of God shall other prophets come?"

Jesus answered: "There shall not come after him true prophets sent by God, but there shall come a great number of false prophets, whereat I sorrow. For Satan shall raise them up by the just judgment of God, and they shall hide themselves under the pretext of my gospel."

Herod answered: "How is it a just judgment of God that such impious men should come?"

Jesus answered: "It is just that he who will not believe in the truth to his salvation should believe in a lie to his damnation. Wherefore I say to you, that the world has ever despised the true prophets and loved the false, as can be seen in the time of Micaiah and Jeremiah. For every like loves his like."

Then said the priest: "How shall the Messiah be called, and what sign shall reveal his coming?"

Jesus answered: "The name of the Messiah is admirable, for God himself gave him the name when he had created his soul, and placed it in a celestial splendour. God said: "Wait Muhammad; for your sake I will to create paradise, the world, and a great multitude of creatures, whereof I make you a present, insomuch that whoever shall bless you shall be blessed, and whoever shall curse you shall be accursed. When I shall send you into the world I shall send you as my Messenger of salvation, and your word shall be true, insomuch that heaven and earth shall fail, but your faith shall never fail." Muhammad is his blessed name."

Then the crowd lifted up their voices, saying: "O God send us your Messenger: O Muhammad, come quickly for the salvation of the world!"

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Chapter 98

And having said this, the multitude departed with the priest and the governor with Herod, having great disputations concerning Jesus and concerning his doctrine. Whereupon the priest prayed the governor to write to Rome to the senate the whole matter; which thing the governor did; wherefore the senate had compassion on Israel, and decreed that on pain of death none should call Jesus the Nazarene, prophet of the Jews, either God or son of God. Which decree was posted up in the Temple, engraved upon copper.

When the greater part of the crowd had departed, there remained about five thousand men, without women and children who being wearied by the journey, having been two days without bread, for that through longing to see Jesus they had forgotten to bring any, whereupon they ate raw herbs therefore they were not able to depart like the others.

Then Jesus, when he perceived this, had pity on them, and said to Philip: "Where shall we find bread for them that they perish not of hunger?"

Philip answered: "Lord, two hundred pieces of gold could not buy so much bread that each one should taste a little." Then said Andrew: "There is here a child which has five loaves and two fishes, but what will it be among so many?"

Jesus answered: "Make the multitude sit down" And they sat down upon the grass by fifties and by forties. Thereupon said Jesus: "In the name of God!" And he took the bread, and prayed to God and then brake the bread, which he gave to the disciples, and the disciples gave it to the multitude; and so did they with the fishes. Every one ate and every one was satisfied. Then Jesus said: "Gather up that which is over." So the disciples gathered those fragments, and filled twelve baskets. Thereupon every one put his hand to his eyes, saying: "Am I awake, or do I dream?" And they remained, every one, for the space of an hour. as it were beside themselves by reason of the great miracle.

Afterwards Jesus, when he had given thanks to God, dismissed them, but there were seventy-two men that willed not to leave him; wherefore Jesus, perceiving their faith, chose them for disciples.

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Chapter 99

Jesus, having withdrawn into a hollow part of the desert in Tiro near to Jordan, called together the seventy-two with the twelve, and, when he had seated himself upon a stone, made them to sit near him. And he opened his mouth with a sigh and said: "This day have we seen a great wickedness in Judea and in Israel such that my heart trembles within my breast for fear of God. Truly I say to you, that God is jealous for his honour, and loves Israel as a lover. You know that when a youth loves a lady, and she does not love him, but another, he is moved to indignation and slays his rival. Even so, I tell you, does God: for, when Israel has loved anything such that he forgets God, God has brought such a thing to nothing. Now what thing is more dear to God here on earth than the priesthood and the holy Temple? Nevertheless, in the time of Jeremiah the prophet, when the people had forgotten God, and boasted only of the Temple, for that there was none like it in all the world, God raised up his wrath by Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, and with an army caused him to take the holy city and burn it with the sacred Temple, such that the sacred things which the prophets of God trembled to touch were trodden under foot by infidels full of wickedness.

Abraham loved his son Ishmael a little more than was right, so in order to kill that evil love out of the heart of Abraham, God commanded that he should slay his son: which he would have done had the knife cut.

David loved Absalom vehemently, and therefore God brought it to pass that the son rebelled against his father and was suspended by his hair and slain by Joab. O fearful judgment of God, that Absalom loved his hair above all things, and this was turned into a rope to hang him!

Innocent Job came near to loving his seven sons and three daughters [too much], when God gave him into the hand of Satan, who not only deprived him of his sons and his riches in one day, but also struck him with grievous sickness, such that worms came out of his flesh for the next seven years.

Our father Jacob loved Joseph more than his other sons, so God caused him to be sold, and caused Jacob to be deceived by these same sons, such that he believed that the beasts had devoured his son, and so lived in mourning for ten years.

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Chapter 100

As God lives, brothers, I fear that God will be angered against me. Therefore you must go through Judea and Israel, preaching the truth to the twelve tribes, that they may be undeceived."

The disciples answered with fear, weeping: "We will do whatever you bid us."

Then Jesus said: "Let us make prayer and fast for three days, and from henceforth every evening when the first star shall appear, when prayer is made to God, let us make prayer three times, asking him for mercy three times: because the sin of Israel is three times more grievous than other sins."

"So be it," answered the disciples.

When the third day was ended, on the morning of the fourth day, Jesus called together all the disciples and apostles and said to them: "Barnabas and John will stay with me: you others are to go through all the region of Samaria and Judea and Israel, preaching penitence: because the axe is laid near to the tree, to cut it down. And make prayer over the sick, because God has given me authority over every sickness."

Then he who writes said: "O Master, if your disciples be asked how they ought to show penitence, what shall they answer?"

Jesus answered: "When a man loses a purse does he turn back only his eye, to see it? or his hand, to take it? or his tongue, to ask? No, but he turns his whole body back and employs every power of hissoul to find it. Is this true?"

Then he who writes answered: "It is most true."

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Chapter 112

Having said this, Jesus said: "You needs must seek of the fruits of the field the wherewithal to sustain our life, for it is now eight days that we have eaten no bread. Wherefore I will pray to our God, and will await you with Barnabas."

So all the disciples and apostles departed by fours and by sixes and went their way according to the word of Jesus. There remained with Jesus he who writes; whereupon Jesus, weeping, said: "O Barnabas, it is necessary that I should reveal to you great secrets, which, after that I shall be departed from the world, you shall reveal to it."

Then answered he that writes, weeping, and said: "Suffer me to weep, O master, and other men also, for that we are sinners. And you, that are an holy one and prophet of God, it is not fitting for you to weep so much."

Jesus answered: "Believe me, Barnabas that I cannot weep as much as I ought. For if men had not called me God, I should have seen God here as he will be seen in paradise, and should have been safe not to fear the day of judgment. But God knows that I am innocent, because never have I harboured thought to be held more than a poor slave. No, I tell you that if I had not been called God I should have been carried into paradise when I shall depart from the world, whereas now I shall not go thither until the judgment. Now you see if I have cause to weep. Know, O Barnabas, that for this I must have great persecution, and shall be sold by one of my disciples for thirty pieces of money. Whereupon I am sure that he who shall sell me shall be slain in my name, for that God shall take me up from the earth, and shall change the appearance of the traitor so that every one shall believe him to be me; nevertheless, when he dies an evil death, I shall abide in that dishonour for a long time in the world. But when Muhammad shall come, the sacred Messenger of God, that infamy shall be taken away. And this shall God do because I have confessed the truth of the Messiah who shall give me this reward, that I shall be known to be alive and to be a stranger to that death of infamy."

Then answered he that writes: "O master, tell me who is that wretch, for I fain would choke him to death."

"Hold your peace," answered Jesus, "for so God wills, and he cannot do otherwise but see you that when my mother is afflicted at such an event you tell her the truth, in order that she may be comforted."

Then answered he who writes: "All this will I do, O master, if God please."

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Chapter 113

When the disciples were come they brought pine-cones, and by the will of God they found a good quantity of dates. So after the midday prayer they ate with Jesus. Whereupon the apostles and disciples, seeing him that writes of sad countenance, feared that Jesus needs must quickly depart from the world. Whereupon Jesus consoled them, saying: "Fear not, for my hour is not yet come that I should depart from you. I shall abide with you still for a little while. Therefore must I teach you now, in order that you may go, as I have said, through all Israel to preach penitence; in order that God may have mercy upon the sin of Israel. Let every one therefore beware of sloth, and much more he that does penance; because every tree that bears not good fruit shall be cut down and cast into the fire.

There was a citizen who had a vineyard, and in the midst thereof had a garden, which had a fine fig-tree; whereon for three years when the owner came he found no fruit, and seeing every other tree bare fruit there he said to his vinedresser: "Cut down this bad tree, for it cumbers the ground."

The vinedresser answered: "Not so, my lord, for it is a beautiful tree."

"Hold your peace," said the owner, "for I care not for useless beauties. You should know that the palm and the balsam are nobler than the fig. But I had planted in the courtyard of my house a plant of palm and one of balsam, which I had surrounded with costly walls, but when these bare no fruit, but leaves which heaped themselves up and putrefied the ground in front of the house, I caused them both to be removed. And how shall I pardon a fig-tree far from the house, which cumbers my garden and my vineyard where every other tree bears fruit? Assuredly I will not suffer it any longer."

Then said the vinedresser: "Lord, the soil is too rich. Wait, therefore, one year more, for I will prune the fig-plant's branches, and take away from it the richness of the soil, putting in poor soil with stones, and so shall it bear fruit."

The owner answered: "Now go and do so; for I will wait, and the fig-plant shall bear fruit." Understand you this parable?"

The disciples answered: "No, Lord, therefore explain it to us."

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Chapter 136

In this accursed spot shall abide the infidels for evermore: insomuch that if the world were filled with grains of millet, and a single bird once in a hundred years should take away a single grain to empty the world if when it should be empty the infidels were to go into paradise, they would rest delighted. But there is not this hope, because their torment cannot have an end, seeing that they were not willing for the love of God to put an end to their sin.

'But the faithful shall have comfort, because their torment shall have an end.'

The disciples were affrighted, hearing this, and said: 'So then the faithful must go into hell?'

Jesus answered: 'Every one, be he who he may, must go into hell. It is true, however, that the holy ones and prophets of God shall go there to behold, not suffering any punishment and the righteous, only suffering fear. And what shall I say? I tell you that thither shall come [even] the Messenger of God, to behold the justice of God. Thereupon hell shall tremble at his presence. And because he has human flesh, all those that have human flesh and shall be under punishment, so long as the Messenger of God shall abide to behold hell, so long shall they abide without punishment. But he shall abide there [only] so long as it takes to shut and open the eyes.

'And this shall God do in order that every creature may know that he has received benefit from the Messenger of God.

'When he shall go there all the devils shall shriek, and seek to hide themselves beneath the burning embers, saying one to another: "Fly, fly, for here comes Muhammad our enemy!" Hearing which, Satan shall smite himself upon the face with both his hands, and screaming shall say: "You are more noble than I, in my despite, and this is unjustly done!"

'As for the faithful, who are in seventy-two grades, those of the two last grades, who shall have had the faith without good works, the one being sad at good works, and the other delighting in evil, they shall abide in hell seventy thousand years.

'After those years shall the angel Gabriel come into hell, and shall hear them say: "O Muhammad, where are your promises made to us, saying that those who have your faith shall not abide in hell for evermore?"

Then the angel of God shall return to paradise, and having approached with reverence the Messenger of God shall narrate to him what he has heard.

Then shall his Messenger speak to God and say: "Lord, my God, remember the promise made to me your servant, concerning them that have received my faith, that they shall not abide for evermore in hell."

God shall answer: "Ask what you will, O my friend, for I will give you all that you ask."

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Chapter 137

Then shall the Messenger of God say: "O Lord, there are of the faithful who have been in hell seventy thousand years. Where, O Lord, is your mercy? I pray you, Lord, to free them from those bitter punishments."

Then shall God command the four favourite angels of God that they go to hell and take out every one that has the faith of his Messenger, and lead him into paradise. And this they shall do.

And such shall be the advantage of the faith of God's Messenger, that those that shall have believed in him, even though they have not done any good works, seeing they died in this faith, shall go into paradise after the punishment of which I have spoken.'

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Chapter 142

Judas, the traitor, when he saw that Jesus was fled, lost the hope of becoming powerful in the world, for he carried Jesus' purse, wherein was kept all that was given him for love of God. He hoped that Jesus would become king of Israel, and so he himself would be a powerful man. Wherefore, having lost this hope, he said within himself: 'If this man were a prophet, he would know that I steal his money; and so he would lose patience and cast me out of his service, knowing that I believe not in him. And if he were a wise man he would not flee from the honour that God wills to give him. Wherefore it will be better that I make arrangement with the chief priests and with the scribes and Pharisees, and see how to give him up into their hands, for so shall I be able to obtain something good.' Whereupon, having made his resolution, he gave notice to the scribes and Pharisees how the matter had passed in Nain. And they took counsel with the high priest, saying: 'What shall we do if this man become king? Surely we shall fare badly; because he is fain to reform the worship of God after the ancient custom, for he cannot away with our traditions. Now how shall we fare under the sovereignty of such a man? Surely we shall all perish with our children: for being cast out of our office we shall have to beg our bread.

We now, praised be God, have a king and a governor that are alien to our Law, who care not for our Law, even as we care not for theirs. And so we are able to do whatsoever we list; for, even though we sin, our God is so merciful that he is appeased with sacrifice and fasting. But if this man become king he will not be appeased unless he shall see the worship of God according as Moses wrote; and what is worse, he says that the Messiah shall not come of the seed of David (as one of his chief disciples has told us), but says that he shall come of the seed of Ishmael, and that the promise was made in Ishmael and not in Isaac.

What then shall the fruit be if this man be suffered to live? Assuredly the Ishmaelites shall come into repute with the Romans, and they shall give them our country in possession; and so shall Israel again be subjected to slavery as it was aforetime.' Wherefore, having heard the proposal, the high priest gave answer that he must needs treat with Herod and with the governor, 'because the people are so inclined towards him that without the soldiery we shall not be able to do anything; and may it please God that with the soldiery we may accomplish this business.'

Wherefore, having taken counsel among themselves, they plotted to seize him by night, when the governor and Herod should agree thereto.

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Chapter 143

Then all the disciples came to Damascus, by the will of God. And on that day Judas the traitor, more than any other, made show of having suffered grief at Jesus' absence, at which Jesus said: "Let every one beware of him who without occasion labours to give you tokens of love."

And God took away our understanding, that we might not know to what end he said this.

After the coming of all the disciples, Jesus said: "Let us return into Galilee, for the angel of God has said to me that I must go there." So one sabbath morning, Jesus came to Nazareth. When the citizens recognized Jesus, everyone desired to see him. A publican named Zacchaeus, who was of small stature, not being able to see Jesus because of the great multitude, climbed to the top of a sycamore, and there waited for Jesus to pass that place when he went to the synagogue. Jesus then, having come to that place, lifted up his eyes and said: "Come down, Zacchaeus, for today I will abide in your house."

The man came down and received him with gladness, making a splendid feast.

The Pharisees murmured, saying to Jesus' disciples: "Why [has] your master gone in to eat with publicans and sinners?"

Jesus answered: "Why does the physician [enter] into a house? Tell me, and I will tell you why I am come in here."

They answered: "To heal the sick."

"You say the truth," said Jesus, "for [those who are] whole have no need of medicine, only the sick.

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Chapter 144

As God lives, in whose presence my soul stands, God sends his prophets and servants into the world in order that sinners may repent; and he sends [them] not for the sake of the righteous, because they had no need of repentance, even as he that is clean has no need of the bath. But truly I say to you, if you were true Pharisees you would be glad that I should have gone in to sinners for their salvation.

Tell me, do you know your origin and how the world began to receive Pharisees? I will tell you, seeing that you do not know it, so hearken to my words.

Enoch, a friend of God, who walked with God in truth, making no account of the world, was translated into paradise; and there he abides until the Judgment (for when the end of the world draws near he shall return to help the world with Elijah and one other). And so men, having knowledge of this, through desire of paradise, began to seek God their creator. For 'Pharisee' strictly means 'seeks God' in the language of Canaan, for there did this name begin [as a] way of deriding good men, since the Canaanites were given up to idolatry, which is the worship of human hands.

Whereupon the Canaanites, beholding those of our people that were separated from the world to serve God, when they saw such an one, said in derision 'Pharisee!' that is, 'He seeks God'; as much as to say: 'O madman, you have no statues of idols and adore the wind; look to your fate and come and serve our gods.'

Truly I say to you," said Jesus, "all the saints and prophets of God have been Pharisees not in name, as you are, but in very deed. For in all their acts they sought God their creator, and for love of God they forsook cities and their own goods, selling [their goods] and giving to the poor for love of God."

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Chapter 163

Jesus went into the wilderness beyond Jordan with his disciples, and when the midday prayer was done he sat down near to a palm-tree, and under the shadow of the palm-tree his disciples sat down.

Then Jesus said: 'So secret is predestination, O brethren, that I say to you, truly, only to one man shall it be clearly known. He it is whom the nations look for, to whom the secrets of God are so clear that, when he comes into the world, blessed shall they be that shall listen to his words, because God shall overshadow them with his mercy even as this palm-tree overshadows us. Yes, even as this tree protects us from the burning heat of the sun, even so the mercy of God will protect from Satan them that believe in that man.'

The disciples answered, "O Master, who shall that man be of whom you speak, who shall come into the world?"

Jesus answered with joy of heart: 'He is Muhammad, Messenger of God, and when he comes into the world, even as the rain makes the earth to bear fruit when for a long time it has not rained, even so shall he be occasion of good works among men, through the abundant mercy which he shall bring. For he is a white cloud full of the mercy of God, which mercy God shall sprinkle upon the faithful like rain.'

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Chapter 164

I will accordingly tell you now [what] little God has granted me to know concerning this same predestination. The Pharisees say that everything has been so predestined that he who is elect cannot become reprobate, and he who is reprobate cannot by any means become elect; and that, even as God has predestined well-doing as the road by which the elect shall walk to salvation, even so has he predestined sin as the road by which the reprobate shall walk into damnation. Cursed be the tongue that said this, with the hand that wrote it, for this is the faith of Satan. Wherefore one may know of what manner are the Pharisees of the present day, for they are faithful servants of Satan.

What can predestination mean but an absolute will to give an end to a thing [of which] one has the means in hand? for without the means one cannot destine an end. How, then, shall he who not only lacks stone and money to spend, but has not even so much land as to place one foot upon, destine to build a house? Surely, none [could do so]. No more, then, I tell you, is predestination, taking away the free will that God has given to man of his pure bounty, the Law of God. Surely it is not predestination but abomination we shall be establishing.

That man is free the Book of Moses shows, where, when our God gave the Law upon Mount Sinai, he spoke thus: "My commandment is not in the heaven that you should excuse yourself, saying: Now, who shall go to bring us the commandment of God? and who perhaps shall give us strength to observe it? Neither is it beyond the sea, that in like manner you should excuse yourself. But my commandment is near to your heart, that when you will you may observe it."

Tell me, if King Herod should command an old man to become young and a sick man that he should become whole, and when they did not [do] iti should cause them to be killed, would this be just?

The disciples answered: "If Herod gave this command, he would be most unjust and impious."

Then Jesus, sighing, said: "These are the fruits of human traditions, O brethren; for in saying that God has predestinated the reprobate such that he cannot become elect they blaspheme God as impious and unjust. For he commands the sinner not to sin, and when he sins to repent; while such predestination takes away from the sinner the power not to sin, and entirely deprives him of repentance."

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Chapter 165

But hear what says God by Joel the prophet: "As I live, [says] your God, I will not the death of a sinner, but I seek that he should be converted to penitence." Will God then predestinate that which he [does] not will? Consider that which God says, and that which the Pharisees of this present time say.

Further, God says by the prophet Isaiah: "I have called, and you would not hearken to me." And how much God has called, hear how he says by the same prophet: All the day have I spread out my hands to a people that believe me not, but contradict me." And our Pharisees, when they say that the reprobate cannot become elect, what [do] they say, then, but that God mocks men even as he would mock a blind man who should show him something white, and as he would mock a deaf man who should speak into his ears? And that the elect can be reprobated, consider what our God says by Ezekiel the prophet: "As I live, says God, if the righteous shall forsake his righteousness and shall do abominations, he shall perish, and I will not remember any more any of his righteousness; for trusting therein it shall forsake him before me and it shall not save him."

And of the calling of the reprobate, what says God by the prophet Hosea but this: I will call a people not elect, I will call them elect." God is true, and cannot tell a lie: for God being truth speaks truth. But the Pharisees of this present time with their doctrine contradict God altogether.

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Chapter 166

Andrew replied: "But how is that to be understood which God said to Moses, that he will have mercy on whom he wills to have mercy and will harden whom he wills to harden."

Jesus answered: "God says this in order that man may not believe that he is saved by his own virtue, but may perceive that life and the mercy of God have been granted him by God of his bounty. And he says it in order that men may shun the opinion that there be other gods than he.

If, therefore, he hardened Pharaoh he did it because he had afflicted our people and essayed to bring it to nought by destroying all the male children in Israel: whereby Moses was near to losing his life.

Accordingly, I say to you truly, that predestination has for its foundation the Law of God and human free will. Yes, and even if God could save the whole world so that none should perish he would not will to do so lest thus he should deprive man of freedom, which he preserves to him in order to do despite to Satan, in order that this [lump of ] clay, scorned of the spirit, even though it shall sin as the spirit did, may have power to repent and go to dwell in that place whence the spirit was cast out. Our God wills, I say, to pursue with his mercy man's free will, and wills not to forsake the creature with his omnipotence. And so on the day of judgment none will be able to make any excuse for their sins, seeing that it will then be manifest to them how much God has done for their conversion, and how often he has called them to repentance.

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Chapter 190

'Tell me, brother, you that are a doctor learned in the Law in whom was the promise of the Messiah made to our father Abraham? In Isaac or in Ishmael."

The scribe answered: 'O master, I fear to tell you this, because of the penalty of death.'

Then Jesus said: 'Brother, I am grieved that I came to eat bread in your house, since you love this present life more than God your creator; and for this cause you fear to lose your life, but fear not to lose the faith and the life eternal, which is lost when the tongue speaks contrary to that which the heart knows of the Law of God.

Then the good scribe wept, and said: "O master, if I had known how to bear fruit, I should have preached many things which I have left unsaid lest sedition should be roused among the people."

Jesus answered: "You should respect neither the people, nor all the world, nor all the holy ones, nor all the angels, when it should cause offence to God. Wherefore let the whole [world] perish rather than offend God your creator, and preserve it not with sin. For sin destroys and preserves not, and God is mighty to create as many worlds as there are sands in the sea, and more."


Chapter 191

The scribe then said: "Pardon me, O master, for I have sinned."

Jesus said: "God pardon you. for against him have you sinned."

Whereupon said the scribe: I have seen an old book written by the hand of Moses and Joshua (he who made the sun stand still as you have done), servants and prophets of God, which book is the true Book of Moses. Therein is written that Ishmael is the father of Messiah, and Isaac the father of the messenger of the Messiah. And thus says the book, that Moses said: "Lord God of Israel, mighty and merciful, manifest to your servant the splendour of your glory." Whereupon God showed him his Messenger in the arms of Ishmael, and Ishmael in the arms of Abraham. Near to Ishmael stood Isaac, in whose arms was a child, who with his finger pointed to the Messenger of God, saying: "This is he for whom God has created all things."

Whereupon Moses cried out with joy: "O Ishmael, you have in your arms all the world, and paradise! Be mindful of me, God's servant, that I may find grace in God's sight by means of your son, for whom God has made all."


Chapter 192

In that Book it is not found that God eats the flesh of cattle or sheep; in that Book it is not found that God has locked up his mercy in Israel alone, but rather that God has mercy on every man that seeks God his creator in truth.

All of this book I was not able to read, because the high priest, in whose library I was, forbade me, saying that an Ishmaelite had written it.'

Then Jesus said: "See that you never again keep back the truth, because in the faith of the Messiah God shall give salvation to men, and without it shall none be saved."

And there did Jesus end his discourse. Whereupon, as they sat at meat, lo! Mary, who wept at the feet of Jesus, entered into the house of Nicodemus (for that was the name of the scribe), and weeping placed herself at the feet of Jesus, saying: 'Lord, your servant, who through you has found mercy with God, has a sister, and a brother who now lies sick in peril of death.'

Jesus answered: 'Where is your house? Tell me, for I will come to pray God for his health.'

Mary answered: 'Bethany is [the home] of my brother and my sister, for my own house is Magdala: my brother, therefore, is in Bethany.'

Jesus said to the woman: 'Go you straightway to your brother's house, and there await me, for I will come to heal him. And fear you not, for he shall not die.'

The woman departed, and having gone to Bethany found that her brother had died that day, wherefore they laid him in the sepulchre of their fathers.

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Chapter 193

Jesus abode two days in the house of Nicodemus, and the third day he departed for Bethany; and when he was near to the town he sent two of his disciples before him, to announce to Mary his coming. She ran out of the town, and when she had found Jesus. said, weeping: 'Lord, you said that my brother would not die; and now he has been buried four days. Would to God you had come before I called you, for then he had not died!'

Jesus answered: 'Thy brother is not dead, but sleeps, therefore I come to awake him.'

Mary answered, weeping: 'Lord, from such a sleep he shall be awakened on the day of judgment by the angel of God sounding his trumpet.'

Jesus answered: 'Mary, believe me that he shall rise before [that day], because God has given me power over his sleep; and truly I say to you he is not dead, for he alone is dead who dies without finding mercy with God.'

Mary returned quickly to announce to her sister Martha the coming of Jesus.

Now there were assembled at the death of Lazarus a great number of Jews from Jerusalem, and many scribes and Pharisees. Martha, having heard from her sister Mary of the coming of Jesus, arose in haste and ran outside, whereupon the multitude of Jews, scribes, and Pharisees followed her to comfort her, because they supposed she was going to the sepulchre to weep over her brother. When therefore she arrived at the place where Jesus had spoken to Mary, Martha weeping said: 'Lord, would to God you had been here, for then my brother had not died!'

Mary then came up weeping; whereupon Jesus shed tears, and sighing said: 'Where have you laid him?' They answered: 'Come and see.'

The Pharisees said among themselves: 'Now this man, who raised the son of the widow at Nain, why did he suffer this man to die, having said that he should not die?'

Jesus having come to the sepulchre, where every one was weeping, said: 'Weep not, for Lazarus sleeps, and I am come to awake him.'

The Pharisees said among themselves: 'Would to God that you did so sleep!' Then Jesus said: 'My hour is not yet come; but when it shall come I shall sleep in like manner, and shall be speedily awakened.' Then Jesus said again: 'Take away the stone from the sepulchre.'

Said Martha: 'Lord, he stinks, for he has been dead four days.'

Jesus said: 'Why then am I come hither, Martha? Believe you not in me that I shall awaken him?'

Martha answered: 'I know that you are the holy one of God, who has sent you into this world.'

Then Jesus lifted up his hands to heaven, and said: 'Lord God of Abraham, God of Ishmael and Isaac, God of our fathers, have mercy upon the affliction of these women, and give glory to your holy name.' And when every one had answered 'Amen,' Jesus said with a loud voice:

'Lazarus, come forth!'

Whereupon he that was dead arose; and Jesus said to his disciples: 'Loose him.' For he was bound in the grave-clothes with the napkin over his face, even as our fathers were accustomed to bury [their dead].

A great multitude of the Jews and some of the Pharisees believed in Jesus, because the miracle was great. Those that remained in their unbelief departed and went to Jerusalem and announced to the chief of the priests the resurrection of Lazarus, and how that many were become Nazarenes; for so they called them who were brought to penitence through the word of God which Jesus preached.

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Chapter 194

The scribes and Pharisees took counsel with the high priest to slay Lazarus; for many renounced their traditions and believed in the word of Jesus, because the miracle of Lazarus was a great one, seeing that Lazarus had conversation with men, and ate and drank. But because he was powerful, having a following in Jerusalem, and possessing with his sister Magdala and Bethany, they knew not what to do.

Jesus entered into Bethany, into the house of Lazarus, and Martha, with Mary, ministered to him.

Mary, sitting one day at the feet of Jesus, was listening to his words, whereupon Martha said to Jesus: 'Lord, see you not that my sister takes no care for you, and provides not that which you must eat and your disciples?'

Jesus answered: 'Martha, Martha, do you take thought for that which you should do; for Mary has chosen a part which shall not be taken away from her for ever.

Jesus, sitting at table with a great multitude that believed in him, spoke, saying: 'Brethren, I have but little time to remain with you, for the time is at hand that I must depart from the world. Wherefore I bring to your mind the words of God spoken to Ezekiel the prophet, saying: "As I, your God, live eternally, the soul that sins, it shall die, but if the sinner shall repent he shall not die but live."

Wherefore the present death is not death, but rather the end of a long death: even as the body when separated from the sense in a swoon, though it have the soul within it, has no other advantage over the dead and buried save this, that the buried [body] awaits God to raise it again, but the unconscious waits for the sense to return.

Behold, then, the present life that it is death, through having no perception of God.

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Chapter 195

'They that shall believe in me shall not die eternally, for through my word they shall perceive God within them, and therefore shall work out their salvation.

What is death but an act which nature does by commandment of God? As it would be if one held a bird tied, and held the cord in his hand; when the head wills the bird to fly away, what does it? Assuredly it commands naturally the hand to open; and so straightway the bird flies away. "Our soul," as says the prophet David, "is as a sparrow freed from the snare of the fowler," when man abides under the protection of God. And our life is like a cord whereby nature holds the soul bound to the body and the sense of man. When therefore God wills, and commands nature to open, the life is broken and the soul escapes in the hands of the angels whom God has ordained to receive souls.

Let not, then, friends weep when their friend is dead; for our God has so willed. But let him weep without ceasing when he sins, for [so] the soul dies, seeing it separates itself from God, the true Life.

If the body is horrible without its union with the soul, much more frightful is the soul without union with God, who with his grace and mercy beautifies and quickens it.'

And having said this Jesus gave thanks to God; whereupon Lazarus said: 'Lord, this house belongs to God my creator, with all that he has given into my keeping, for the service of the poor. Wherefore, since you are poor, and have a great number of disciples, come you to dwell here when you please, and as much as you please, for the servant of God will minister to you as much as shall be needful, for love of God.'

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Chapter 196

Jesus rejoiced when he heard this, and said: 'See now how good a thing it is to die! Lazarus has died once only, and has learned such doctrine as is not known to the wise men in the world that have grown old among books! Would to God that every man might die once only and return to the world, like Lazarus, in order that men might learn to live.'

John answered: 'O master, is it permitted to me to speak a word?'

'Speak a thousand,' answered Jesus, 'for just as a man is bound to dispense his goods in the service of God, so also is he bound to dispense doctrine: and so much the more is he bound [so to do] inasmuch as the world has power to raise up a soul to penitence, whereas goods cannot bring back life to the dead. Wherefore he is a murderer who has power to help a poor man and when he helps him not the poor man dies of hunger; but a more grievous murderer is he who could by the word of God convert the sinner to penitence, and converts him not, but stands, as says God, "like a dumb dog." Against such says God: "The soul of the sinner that shall perish because you have hidden my word, I will require it at your hands, O unfaithful servant."

In what condition, then, are now the scribes and Pharisees who have the key and will not enter, no hinder them who would fain enter, into eternal life?

'You ask me, O John, permission to speak one word, having listened to an hundred thousand words of mine. Truly I say to you, I am bound to listen to you ten times for every one that you have listened to me. And he who will not listen to another, every time that he shall speak he shall sin; seeing that we ought to do to others that which we desire for ourselves, and not do to others that which we do not desire to receive.'

Then said John: 'O master, why has not God granted this to men, that they should die once and return as Lazarus has done, in order that they might learn to know themselves and their creator?'

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Chapter 197

Jesus answered: 'Tell me, John; there was an householder who gave a perfect axe to one of his servants in order that he might cut down the wood which obstructed the view of his house.

But the labourer forgot the axe, and said: "If the master would give me an old axe I should easily cut down the wood." Tell me, John, what said the master? Assuredly he was wroth, and took the old axe and struck him on the head, saying: Fool and knave! I gave you an axe wherewith you might cut down the wood without toil, and seek you this axe, wherewith one must work with great toil, and all that is cut is wasted and good for nought? I desire you to cut down the wood in such wise that your work shall be good." Is this true?'

John answered: 'It is most true.' [Then Jesus said:] 'As I live eternally,' said God, 'I have given a good axe to every man, which is the sight of the burial of one dead. Whoso wield well this axe remove the wood of sin from their heart without pain; wherefore they receive my grace and mercy; giving them merit of eternal life for their good works. But he who forgets that he is mortal, though time after time he see others die, and says. "If I should see the other life, I would do good works," my fury shall be upon him, and I will so smite him with death that he shall never more receive any good.' 'O John,' said Jesus, 'how great is the advantage of him who from the fall of others learns to stand on his feet!'

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Chapter 198

Then said Lazarus: 'Master, truly I say to you, I cannot conceive the penalty of which he is worthy who time after time sees the dead borne to the tomb and fears not God our creator. Such an one for the things of this world, which he ought entirely to forsake, offends his creator who has given him all.'

Then Jesus said to his disciples: 'You call me Master, and you do well, seeing that God teaches you by my mouth. But how will you call Lazarus? Truly he is here master of all the masters that teach doctrine in this world. I indeed have taught you how you ought to live well, but Lazarus will teach you how to die well. As God lives, he has received the gift of prophecy; listen therefore to his words, which are truth. And so much the more ought you to listen to him, as good living is vain if one die badly.'

Said Lazarus: 'O master, I thank you that you make the truth to be prized; therefore will God give the great merit.'

Then said he who writes this: 'O master how speaks Lazarus the truth in saying to you "You shall have merit," whereas you said to Nicodemus that man merits nought but punishment? Shall you accordingly be punished of God?'

Jesus answered: 'May it please God that I receive punish. men of God in this World, because I have not served him so faithfully as I was bound to do.

But God has so loved me, by his mercy, that every punishment is withdrawn from me, in so much that I shall only be tormented in another person. For punishment was fitting for me, for that men have called me God; but since I have confessed, not only that I am not God, as is the truth, but have confessed also that I am not the Messiah, therefore God has taken away the punishment from me, and will cause a wicked one to suffer it in my name, so that the shame alone shall be mine. wherefore I say to you, my Barnabas, that when a man speaks of what God shall give to his neighbour let him say that his neighbour merits it: but let him look to it that, when he speaks of what God shall give to himself , he say: God will give me." And let him look to it that he say not, I have merit, because God is pleased to grant his mercy to his servants when they confess that they merit hell for their sins.

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Chapter 199

God is so rich in mercy that the water of a thousand seas, if so many were to be found, could not quench a spark of the flames of hell, yet a single tear of one who mourns at having offended God quenches the whole of hell, by the great mercy wherewith God succours him. God, therefore, to confound Satan and to display his own bounty, wills to call merit in the presence of his mercy every good work of his faithful servant, and wills him so to speak of his neighbour. But of himself a man must beware of saying: "I have merit"; for he would be condemned.'

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Chapter 200

Jesus then turned to Lazarus, and said: 'Brother, I must needs for a short time abide in the world, wherefore when I shall be near to your house I will not ever go elsewhere, because you will minister to me, not for love of me, but for love of God.'

It was near to the Passover of the Jews, [so] Jesus said to his disciples: "Let us go to Jerusalem to eat the paschal lamb." And he sent Peter and John to the city, saying: "You shall find an ass near the gate of the city with a colt: loose her and bring her here; for I must ride [on her] into Jerusalem. And if any one ask you saying, "Why [do] you loose her?" say to them: "The Master has need therof," and they will permit you to bring her."

The disciples went, and found all that Jesus had told them, and accordingly they brought the ass and the colt. The disciples [then] placed their mantles upon the colt, and Jesus rode [on her]. And it came to pass that, when the men of Jerusalem heard that Jesus of Nazareth was coming, the men went forth with their children eager to see Jesus, bearing in their hands branches of palm and olive, singing: 'Blessed be he that comes to us in the name of God; hosanna son of David!'

Jesus having come into the city, the men spread out their garments under the feet of the ass, singing: "Blessed be he that comes to us in the name of the Lord God; hosanna, son of David!"

The Pharisees rebuked Jesus, saying: 'See you not what these say? Cause them to hold their peace!'

Then Jesus said: 'As God lives, in whose presence my soul stands, if men should hold their peace, the stones would cry out against the unbelief of malignant sinners.' And when Jesus had said this all the stones of Jerusalem cried out with a great noise: 'Blessed be he who comes to us in the name of the Lord God!'

Nevertheless the Pharisees remained still in their unbelief, and, having assembled themselves together, took counsel to catch him in his talk.

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Chapter 201

Jesus having entered into the Temple, the scribes and Pharisees brought to him a woman taken in adultery. They said among themselves: 'If he save her, it is contrary to the Law of Moses, and so we have him as guilty, and if he condemn her it is contrary to his own doctrine, for he preaches mercy.' Wherefore they came to Jesus and said: 'Master, we have found this woman in adultery. Moses commanded that [such] should be stoned: what then say you?'

Thereupon Jesus stooped down and with his finger made a mirror on the ground wherein every one saw his own iniquities. They still pressed for the answer, Jesus lifted up himself As and, pointing to the mirror with his finger, said: 'He that is without sin among you, let him be first to stone her.' And again he stooped down, shaping the mirror.

The men, seeing this, went out one by one, beginning from the eldest, for they were ashamed to see their abominations.

Jesus having lifted up himself, and seeing no one but the woman, said: 'Woman, where are they that condemned you?'

The woman answered, weeping: 'Lord, they are departed; and if you will pardon me as God lives, I will sin no more.'

Then Jesus said: 'Blessed be God! Go your way in peace and sin no more, for God has not sent me to condemn you.'

Then, the scribes and Pharisees being assembled, Jesus said to them: 'Tell me: if one of you had an hundred sheep, and should lose one of them, would you not go to seek it, leaving the ninety and nine? And when you found it, would you not lay it upon your shoulders and, having called together your neighbours, say to them: "Rejoice with me, for I have found the sheep which I had lost"? Assuredly you would do so.

Now tell me, shall our God love less man, for whom he has made the world? As God lives, even so there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repents; because sinners make known God's mercy.'

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Chapter 202

'Tell me, by whom is the physician more loved: by them that have never had any sickness, or by them whom the physician has healed of grievous sickness?'

Said the Pharisees to him: 'And how shall he that is whole love the physician? assuredly he will love him only for that he is not sick; and not having knowledge of sickness he will love the physician but little.'

Then with vehemence of spirit Jesus spoke, saying: 'As God lives, your own tongues condemn your pride, inasmuch as our God is loved more by the sinner that repents, knowing the great mercy of God upon him, than by the righteous. For the righteous has not knowledge of the mercy of God. Wherefore there is more rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repents than over ninety and nine righteous persons.

Where are the righteous in our time? As God lives, in whose presence my soul stands, great is the number of the righteous unrighteous; their condition being like to that of Satan.'

The scribes and Pharisees answered: 'We are sinners, wherefore God will have mercy on us.' And this they said tempting him; for the scribes and Pharisees count it the greatest insult to be called sinners.

Then Jesus said: 'I fear that you be righteous unrighteous. For if you have sinned and deny your sin, calling yourselves righteous, you are unrighteous; and if in your heart you hold yourselves righteous, and with your tongue you say that you are sinners, then are you doubly righteous unrighteous.'

Accordingly the scribes and Pharisees hearing this were confounded and departed, leaving Jesus with his disciples in peace, and they went into the house of Simon the leper, whose leprosy he [had] cleansed. The citizens had gathered together the sick to the house of Simon and prayed Jesus for the healing of the sick.

Then Jesus, knowing that his hour was near, said: 'Call the sick, as many as there be, because God is mighty and merciful to heal them.'

They answered: 'We know not that there be any other sick folk here in Jerusalem.'

Jesus weeping answered: 'O Jerusalem, O Israel, I weep over you, for you know not your visitation; because I would fain have gathered you to the love of God your creator, as a hen gathers her chickens under her wings, and you would not! Wherefore God says thus to you -

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Chapter 203

O city, hard-hearted and perverse of mind, I have sent to you my servant, to the end that he may convert you to your heart, and you may repent; but you, O city of confusion, have forgotten all that I did upon Egypt and upon Pharaoh for love of you, O Israel. Many times weep you that my servant may heal your body of sickness; and you seek to slay my servant because he seeks to heal your soul of sin.

Shall you, then, alone remain unpunished by me? Shall you, then, live eternally? And shall your pride deliver you from my hands? Assuredly not. For I will bring princes with they shall surround you with might, an army against you, and in such wise will I give you over into their hands that your pride shall fall down into hell.

I will not pardon the old men or the widows, I will not pardon the children, but I will give you all to famine, the sword, and derision and the Temple, whereon I have looked with mercy, I will make desolate with the city, insomuch that you shall be for a fable, a derision, and a proverb among the nations. So is my wrath abiding upon you, and my indignation sleeps not."

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Chapter 204

Having said this, Jesus said again: 'Know you not that there be other sick folk? As God lives, they be fewer in Jerusalem that have their soul sound than they that be sick in body. And in order that you may know the truth, I say to you, O sick folk, in the name of God, let your sickness depart from you!

And when he had said this, immediately they were healed.

The men wept when they heard of the wrath of God upon Jerusalem, and prayed for mercy; when Jesus said: '"If Jerusalem shall weep for her sins and do penance, walking in my ways, said God, "I will not remember her iniquities any more, and I will not do to her any of the evil which I have said. But Jerusalem weeps for her ruin and not for her dishonouring of me, wherewith she has blasphemed my name among the nations. Therefore is my fury kindled much more. As I live eternally, if Job, Abraham, Samuel, David, and Daniel my servants, with Moses, should pray for this people, my wrath upon Jerusalem will not be appeased."' And having said this, Jesus retired into the house, while every one remained in fear.

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Chapter 205

While Jesus was supping with his disciples in the house of Simon the leper, behold Mary the sister of Lazarus entered into the house, and having broken a vessel, poured ointment over the head and garment of Jesus. Seeing this, Judas the traitor was fain to hinder Mary from doing such a work, saying: "Go and sell the ointment and bring the money that I may give it to the poor.'

Jesus said: 'Why hinder you her? Let her be, for the poor you shall have always with you, but me you shall not have always.'

Judas answered: 'O master, this ointment might be sold for three hundred pieces of money now see how many poor folk would be helped.'

Jesus answered: 'O Judas, I know your heart: have patience, therefore, and I will give you all.'

Every one ate with fear, and the disciples were sorrowful, because they knew that Jesus must soon depart from them. But Judas was indignant, because he knew that he was losing thirty pieces of money for the ointment not sold, seeing he stole the tenth part of all that was given to Jesus.

He went to find the high priest, who assembled in a council of priests, scribes, and Pharisees; to whom Judas spoke, saying: 'What will you give me, and I will betray into your hands Jesus, who would fain make himself king of Israel?'

They answered: 'Now how will you give him into our hand?'

Judas said: 'When I shall know that he goes outside the city to pray I will tell you, and will conduct you to the place where he shall be found; for to seize him in the city will be impossible without a sedition.'

The high priest answered: 'If you will give him into our hand we will give the thirty pieces of gold and you shall see how well I will treat you.'

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Chapter 206

When day was come, Jesus went up to the Temple with a great multitude of people. Whereupon the high priest drew near, saying: 'Tell me, O Jesus, have you forgotten all that you did confess, that you are not God, nor son of God, nor even the Messiah?'

Jesus answered: 'No, surely, I have not forgotten; for this is my confession which I shall bear before the judgment seat of God on the day of judgment. For all that is written in the Book of Moses is most true, inasmuch as God our creator is [God] alone, and I am God's servant and desire to serve God's Messenger whom you call Messiah.'

Said the high priest: 'Then what boots it to come to the Temple with so great a multitude of people? Seek you, perhaps, to make yourself king of Israel? Beware lest some danger befall you!'

Jesus answered: 'If I sought my own glory and desired my portion in this world, I had not fled when the people of Nain would fain have made me king. Believe me, truly, that I seek not anything in this world.'

Then said the high priest: 'We want to know a thing concerning the Messiah.' And then the priests, scribes, and Pharisees made a circle round about Jesus.

Jesus answered: 'What is that thing which you seek to know about the Messiah? Perhaps it is the lie? Assuredly I will not tell you the lie. For if I had said the lie I had been adored by you, and by the scribes [and] Pharisees with all Israel: but because I tell you the truth you hate me and seek to kill me.'

Said the high priest: 'Now we know that you have the devil at your back; for you are a Samaritan, and have not respect to the priest of God.'

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Chapter 207

Jesus answered: 'As God lives, I have not the devil at my back, but I seek to cast out the devil. Wherefore, for this cause the devil stirs up the world against me, because I am not of this world, but I seek that God may be glorified, who has sent me into the world. Hearken therefore to me, and I will tell you who has the devil at his back. As God lives, in whose presence my soul stands, he who works after the will of the devil, he has the devil at his back, who has put on him the bridle of his will and rules him at his pleasure, making him to run into every iniquity.

Even as a garment changes its name when it changes its owner, although it is all the same cloth: so also men, albeit they are all of one material, are different by reason of the works of him who works in the man.

'If I (as I know) have sinned, wherefore do you not rebuke me as a brother, instead of hating me as an enemy? Truly the members of a body succour one another when they are united with the head, and they that are cut off from the head give it no succour. For the hands of one body do not feel the pain of another body's feet, but that of the body in which they are united. As God lives, in whose presence my soul stands, he who fears and loves God his Creator has the feeling of mercy over them [over] whom God his head has mercy: and seeing that God wills not the death of the sinner, but waits for each one to repent, if you were of that body wherein I am incorporate, as God lives, you would help me to work according to my head.

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Chapter 208

If I work iniquity, reprove me, and God will love you, because you shall be doing his will, but if none can reprove me of sin it is a sign that you are not sons of Abraham as you call yourselves, nor are you incorporate with that head wherein Abraham was incorporate. As God lives, so greatly did Abraham love God, that he not only brake in pieces the false idols and forsook his father and mother, but was willing to slay his own son in obedience to God.

The high priest answered: "This I ask of you, and I do not seek to slay you, wherefore tell us: Who was this son of Abraham?"

Jesus answered: "The zeal of your honour, O God, inflames me, and I cannot hold my peace. Truly I say, the son of Abraham was Ishmael, from whom must be descended the Messiah promised to Abraham, that in him should all the tribes of the earth be blessed."

Then was the high priest wroth, hearing this, and cried out: "Let us stone this impious fellow, for he is an Ishmaelite, and has spoken blasphemy against Moses and against the Law of God."

Whereupon every scribe and Pharisee, with the elders of the people, took up stones to stone Jesus, who vanished from their eyes and went out of the Temple. And then, through the great desire that they had to slay Jesus, blinded with fury and hatred, they struck one another in such wise that there died a thousand men; and they polluted the holy Temple. The disciples and believers, who saw Jesus go out of the Temple (for from them he was not hidden), followed him to the house of Simon.

Thereupon Nicodemus came thither and counselled Jesus to go out of Jerusalem beyond the brook Cedron, saying: 'Lord, I have a garden with a house beyond the brook Cedron, I pray you, therefore, go thither with some of your disciples, to tarry there until this hatred of our priests be past; for I will minister to you what is necessary. And the multitude of disciples leave you here in the house of Simon and in my house, for God will provide for all.'

And this Jesus did, desiring only to have with him the twelve first called apostles.

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Chapter 209

At this time, while the Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus, was standing in prayer, the angel Gabriel visited her and narrated to her the persecution of her son, saying: "Fear not, Mary, for God will protect him from the world." Mary, weeping, departed from Nazareth, and came to Jerusalem to the house of Mary Salome, her sister, seeking her son.

But since he had secretly retired beyond the brook Cedron she was not able to see him any more in this world; except after the deed of shame, for the angel Gabriel, with the angels Michael, Rafael, and Uriel, by [the] command of God, brought him to her.

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Chapter 210

When the confusion in the Temple ceased by the departure of Jesus, the high priest ascended on high, and having beckoned for silence with his hands he said:, 'Brethren, what do we? See you not that he has deceived the whole world with his diabolical art? Now, how did he vanish, if he be not a magician? Assuredly, if he were an holy one and a prophet, he would not blaspheme against God and against Moses [his] servant, and against the Messiah, who is the hope of Israel. And what shall I say? He has blasphemed all our priesthood, wherefore truly I say to you, if he be not removed from the world Israel will be polluted, and our God will give us to the nations. Behold now, how by reason of him this holy Temple has been polluted.'

And in such wise did the high priest speak at many forsook Jesus, wherefore the secret persecution was converted into an open one, insomuch that the high priest went in person to Herod, and to the Roman governor, accusing Jesus that he desired to make himself king of Israel, and of this they had false witnesses.

Thereupon was held a general council against Jesus, forasmuch as the decree of the Romans made them afraid. For so it was that twice the Roman Senate had sent a decree concerning Jesus: in one decree it was forbidden, on pain of death, that any one should call Jesus of Nazareth, the prophet of the Jews, either God or Son of God; in the other it forbade, under capital sentence, that any one should contend concerning Jesus of Nazareth, prophet of the Jews. Wherefore, for this cause, there was a great division among them. Some desired that they should write again to Rome against Jesus; others said that they should leave Jesus alone, regardless of what he said, as of a fool; others adduced the great miracles that he wrought.

The high priest therefore spoke that under pain of anathema none should speak a word in defence of Jesus; and he spoke to Herod, and to the governor, saying 'In any case we have an ill venture in our hands, for if we slay this sinner we have acted contrary to the decree of Caesar, and, if we suffer him to live and he make himself king, how will the matter go?' Then Herod arose and threatened the governor, saying: 'Beware lest through your favouring of that man this country be rebellious: for I will accuse you before Caesar as a rebel.' Then the governor feared the Senate and made friends with Herod (for before this they had hated one another to death), and they joined together for the death of Jesus, and said to the high priest: 'Whenever you shall know where the malefactor is, send to us, for we will give you soldiers.' This was done to fulfil the prophecy of David who had foretold of Jesus, prophet of Israel, saying: The princes and kings of the earth are united against the holy one of Israel, because he announces the salvation of the world.

Thereupon, on that day, there was a general search for Jesus throughout Jerusalem.

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Chapter 211

Jesus, being in the house of Nicodemus beyond the brook Cedron, comforted his disciples, saying: 'The hour is near that I must depart from the world; console yourselves and be not sad, seeing that where I go I shall not feel any tribulation.

'Now, shall you be my friends if you be sad at my welfare? No, assuredly, but rather enemies. When the world shall rejoice, be you sad, because the rejoicing of the world is turned into weeping; but your sadness shall be turned into joy and your joy shall no one take from you: for the rejoicing that the heart feels in God its creator not the whole world can take away. See that you forget not the words which God has spoken to you by my mouth. Be you my witnesses against every one that shall corrupt the witness that I have witnessed with my gospel against the world, and against the lovers of the world.

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Chapter 212

Then lifting up his hands to the Lord, he prayed, saying: 'Lord our God, God of Abraham, God of Ishmael and Isaac, God of our fathers, have mercy upon them that you have given me, and save them from the world. I say not, take them from the world, because it is necessary that they shall bear witness against them that shall corrupt my gospel. But I pray you to keep them from evil, that on the day of your judgment they may come with me to bear witness against the world and against the House of Israel that has corrupted your testament. Lord God, mighty and jealous, that take vengeance upon idolatry against the sons of idolatrous fathers even to the fourth generation, do you curse eternally every one that shall corrupt my gospel that you gave me, when they write that I am your son. For I, clay and dust, am servant of your servants, and never have I thought myself to be your good servant; for I cannot give you aught in return for that which you have given me, for all things are yours. Lord God, the merciful, that shows mercy to a thousand generations upon them that fear you, have mercy upon them which believe my words that you have given me. For even as you are true God, so your word which I have spoken is true; for it is yours, seeing I have ever spoken as one that reads, who cannot read save that which is written in the book that he reads: even so have I spoken that which you have given me.

'Lord God the Saviour, save them whom you have given me, in order that Satan may not be able to do aught against them, and save not only them, but every one that shall believe in them.

Lord, bountiful and rich in mercy, grant to your servant to be in the congregation of your Messenger on the Day of Judgment: and not me only, but every one whom you have given me, with all them that shall believe on me through their preaching. And this do, Lord, for your own sake, that Satan boast not himself against you, Lord.

'Lord God, who by your providence provides all things necessary for your people Israel, be mindful of all the tribes of the earth, which you have promised to bless by your Messenger, for whom you did create the world. Have mercy on the world and send speedily your Messenger, that Satan your enemy may lose his empire.' And having said this, Jesus said three times: 'So be it, Lord, great and merciful!'

And they answered, weeping: 'So be it," all save Judas, for he believed nothing.

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Chapter 213

The day having come for eating the lamb, Nicodemus sent the lamb secretly to the garden for Jesus and his disciples, announcing all that had been decreed by Herod with the governor and the high priest.

Whereupon Jesus rejoiced in spirit, saying: 'Blessed be your holy name, O Lord, because you have not separated me from the number of your servants that have been persecuted by the world and slain. I thank you, my God, because I have fulfilled your work.' And turning to Judas, he said to him: 'Friend, wherefore do you tarry? My time is near, wherefore go and do that which you must do."

The disciples thought that Jesus was sending Judas to buy something for the day of the Passover: but Jesus knew that Judas was betraying him, wherefore, desiring to depart from the world, he so spoke.

Judas answered: 'Lord, suffer me to eat, and I will go.'

'Let us eat,' said Jesus, 'for I have greatly desired to eat this lamb before I am parted from you.' And having arisen, he took a towel and girded his loins, and having put water in a basin, he set himself to wash his disciples' feet. Beginning from Judas, Jesus came to Peter. Said Peter: 'Lord, would you wash my feet?'

Jesus answered: 'That which I do you know not now, but you shall know hereafter.'

Peter answered: 'You shall never wash my feet.

Then Jesus rose up, and said: 'Neither shall you come in my company on the day of judgment.'

Peter answered: 'Wash not only my feet, Lord, but my hands and my head.'

When the disciples were washed and were seated at table to eat, Jesus said: 'I have washed you, yet are you not all clean, for as much as all the water of the sea will not wash him that believes me not.' This said Jesus, because he knew who was betraying him. The disciples were sad at these words, when Jesus said again: 'Truly I say to you, that one of you shall betray me, insomuch that I shall be sold like a sheep; but woe to him, for he shall fulfil all that our father David said of such an one, that "he shall fall into the pit which he had prepared for others."'

Whereupon the disciples looked one upon another, saying with sorrow: 'Who shall be the traitor?'

Judas then said: 'Shall it be I, O Master?'

Jesus answered: 'You have told me who it shall be that shall betray me.' And the eleven apostles heard it not.

When the lamb was eaten, the devil came upon the back of Judas, and he went forth from the house, Jesus saying to him again: 'Do quickly that which you must do.'


Chapter 214

Having gone forth from the house, Jesus retired into the garden to pray, according as his custom was to pray, bowing his knees an hundred times and prostrating himself upon his face. Judas, accordingly, knowing the place where Jesus was with his disciples, went to the high priest, and said: "If you will give me what was promised, this night will I give into your hand Jesus whom you seek; for he is alone with eleven companions."

The high priest answered: "How much do you seek?"

Judas said, "Thirty pieces of gold."

Then straightway the high priest counted to him the money, and sent a Pharisee to the governor to fetch soldiers, and to Herod, and they gave a legion of them, because they feared the people; wherefore they took their arms, and with torches and lanterns upon staves went out of Jerusalem.


Chapter 215

When the soldiers with Judas drew near to the place where Jesus was, Jesus heard the approach of many people, wherefore in fear he withdrew into the house. And the eleven were sleeping.

Then God, seeing the danger of his servant, commanded Gabriel, Michael, Rafael, and Uriel, his ministers, to take Jesus out of the world.

The holy angels came and took Jesus out by the window that looks toward the South. They bare him and placed him in the third heaven in the company of angels blessing God for evermore.


Chapter 216

Judas entered impetuously before all into the chamber whence Jesus had been taken up. And the disciples were sleeping. Whereupon the wonderful God acted wonderfully, insomuch that Judas was so changed in speech and in face to be like Jesus that we believed him to be Jesus. And he, having awakened us, was seeking where the Master was. Whereupon we marvelled, and answered: 'You, Lord, are our master; have you now forgotten us?'

And he, smiling, said: 'Now are you foolish, that know not me to be Judas Iscariot!'

And as he was saying this the soldiery entered, and laid their hands upon Judas, because he was in every way like to Jesus.

We having heard Judas' saying, and seeing the multitude of soldiers, fled as beside ourselves.

And John, who was wrapped in a linen cloth, awoke and fled, and when a soldier seized him by the linen cloth he left the linen cloth and fled naked. For God heard the prayer of Jesus, and saved the eleven from evil.


Chapter 217

The soldiers took Judas and bound him, not without derision. For he truthfully denied that he was Jesus; and the soldiers, mocking him, said: 'Sir, fear not, for we are come to make you king of Israel, and we have bound you because we know that you do refuse the kingdom.'

Judas answered: 'Now have you lost your senses! You are come to take Jesus of Nazareth, with arms and lanterns as [against] a robber; and you have bound me that have guided you, to make me king!'

Then the soldiers lost their patience, and with blows and kicks they began to flout Judas, and they led him with fury into Jerusalem.

John and Peter followed the soldiers afar off; and they affirmed to him who writes that they saw all the examination that was made of Judas by the high priest, and by the council of the Pharisees, who were assembled to put Jesus to death. Whereupon Judas spoke many words of madness, insomuch that every one was filled with laughter, believing that he was really Jesus, and that for fear of death he was feigning madness. Whereupon the scribes bound his eyes with a bandage, and mocking him said: 'Jesus, prophet of the Nazarenes' (for so they called them who believed in Jesus), 'tell us, who was it that smote you?' And they buffeted him and spat in his face.

When it was morning there assembled the great council of scribes and elders of the people; and the high priest with the Pharisees sought false witness against Judas, believing him to be Jesus: and they found not that which they sought. And why say I that the chief priests believed Judas to be Jesus? No all the disciples, with him who writes, believed it; and more, the poor Virgin mother of Jesus, with his kinsfolk and friends, believed it, insomuch that the sorrow of every one was incredible. As God lives, he who writes forgot all that Jesus had said: how that he should be taken up from the world, and that he should suffer in a third person, and that he should not die until near the end of the world. Wherefore he went with the mother of Jesus and with John to the cross.

The high priest caused Judas to be brought before him bound, and asked him of his disciples and his doctrine.

Whereupon Judas, as though beside himself, answered nothing to the point. The high priest then adjured him by the living God of Israel that he would tell him the truth.

Judas answered: 'I have told you that I am Judas Iscariot, who promised to give into your hands Jesus the Nazarene; and you, by what are I know not, are beside yourselves, for you will have it by every means that I am Jesus.'

The high priest answered: 'O perverse seducer, you have deceived all Israel, beginning from Galilee even to Jerusalem here, with your doctrine and false miracles: and now think you to flee the merited punishment that befits you by feigning to be mad? As God lives,' you shall not escape it!' And having said this he commanded his servants to smite him with buffetings and kicks, so that his understanding might come back into his head. The derision which he then suffered at the hands of the high priest's servants is past belief. For they zealously devised new inventions to give pleasure to the council. So they attired him as a juggler, and so treated him with hands and feet that it would have moved the very Canaanites to compassion if they had beheld that sight.

But the chief priests and Pharisees and elders of the people had their hearts so exasperated against Jesus that, believing Judas to be really Jesus, they took delight in seeing him so treated.

Afterwards they led him bound to the governor, who secretly loved Jesus. Whereupon he, thinking that Judas was Jesus, made him enter into his chamber, and spoke to him, asking him for what cause the chief priests and the people had given him into his hands.

Judas answered: 'If I tell you the truth, you will not believe me; for perhaps you are deceived as the (chief) priests and the Pharisees are deceived.'

The governor answered (thinking that he wished to speak concerning the Law): 'Now know you not that I am not a Jew? but the (chief) priests and the elders of your people have given you into my hand; wherefore tell us the truth, wherefore I may do what is just. For I have power to set you free and to put you to death.'

Judas answered: 'Sir, believe me, if you put me to death, you shall do a great wrong, for you shall slay an innocent person; seeing that I am Judas Iscariot, and not Jesus, who is a magician, and by his are has so transformed me.'

When he heard this the governor marvelled greatly, so that he sought to set him at liberty. The governor therefore went out, and smiling said: 'In the one case, at least, this man is not worthy of death, but rather of compassion.' 'This man says,' said the governor, 'that he is not Jesus, but a certain Judas who guided the soldiery to take Jesus, and he says that Jesus the Galilean has by his are magic so transformed him. Wherefore, if this be true, it were a great wrong to kill him, seeing that he were innocent. But if he is Jesus and denies that he is, assuredly he has lost his understanding, and it were impious to slay a madman.'

Then the chief priests and elders of the people, with the scribes and Pharisees, cried out with shouts, saying: 'He is Jesus of Nazareth, for we know him; for if he were not the malefactor we would not have given him into your hands. Nor is he mad; but rather malignant, for with this device he seeks to escape from our hands, and the sedition that he would stir up if he should escape would be worse than the former.'

Pilate (of such was the governor's name), in order to rid himself of such a case, said: 'He is a Galilean, and Herod is king of Galilee: wherefore it pertains not to me to judge such a case, so take you him to Herod.'

Accordingly they led Judas to Herod, who of a long time had desired that Jesus should go to his house. But Jesus had never been willing to go to his house, because Herod was a Gentile, and adored the false and lying gods, living after the manner of the unclean Gentiles. Now when Judas had been led thither, Herod asked him of many things, to which Judas gave answers not to the purpose, denying that he was Jesus.

Then Herod mocked him, with all his court, and caused him to be clad in white as the fools are clad, and sent him back to Pilate, saying to him, 'Do not fail in justice to the people of Israel!'

And this Herod wrote, because the chief priests and scribes and the Pharisees had given him a good quantity of money. The governor having heard that this was so from a servant of Herod, in order that he also might gain some money, feigned that he desired to set Judas at liberty. Whereupon he caused him to be scourged by his slaves, who were paid by the scribes to slay him under the scourges. But God, who had decreed the issue, reserved Judas for the cross, in order that he might suffer that horrible death to which he had sold another. He did not suffer Judas to die under the scourges, notwithstanding that the soldiers scourged him so grievously that his body rained blood. Thereupon, in mockery they clad him in an old purple garment, saying: 'It is fitting to our new king to clothe him and crown him': so they gathered thorns and made a crown, like those of gold and precious stones which kings wear on their heads. And this crown of thorns they placed upon Judas' head, putting in his hand a reed for sceptre, and they made him sit in a high place. And the soldiers came before him, bowing down in mockery, saluting him as King of the Jews. And they held out their hands to receive gifts, such as new kings are accustomed to give; and receiving nothing they smote Judas, saying: 'Now, how are you crowned, foolish king, if you will not pay your soldiers and servants?'

The chief priests with the scribes and Pharisees, seeing that Judas died not by the scourges, and fearing lest Pilate should set him at liberty, made a gift of money to the governor, who having received it gave Judas to the scribes and Pharisees as guilty to death. Whereupon they condemned two robbers with him to the death of the cross.

So they led him to Mount Calvary, where they used to hang malefactors, and there they crucified him naked, for the greater ignominy.

Judas truly did nothing else but cry out: 'God, why have you forsaken me, seeing the malefactor has escaped and I die unjustly?'

Truly I say that the voice, the face, and the person of Judas were so like to Jesus, that his disciples and believers entirely believed that he was Jesus; wherefore some departed from the doctrine of Jesus, believing that Jesus had been a false prophet, and that by art magic he had done the miracles which he did: for Jesus had said that he should not die till near the end of the world; for that at that time he should be taken away from the world.

But they that stood firm in the doctrine of Jesus were so encompassed with sorrow, seeing him die who was entirely like to Jesus, that they remembered not what Jesus had said. And so in company with the mother of Jesus they went to Mount Calvary, and were not only present at the death of Judas, weeping continually, but by means of Nicodemus and Joseph of Abarimathia they obtained from the governor the body of Judas to bury it. Whereupon, they took him down from the cross with such weeping as assuredly no one would believe, and buried him in the new sepulchre of Joseph; having wrapped him up in an hundred pounds of precious ointments.


Chapter 218

Then returned each man to his house. He who writes, with John and James his brother, went with the mother of Jesus to Nazareth.

Those disciples who did not fear God went by night [and] stole the body of Judas and hid it, spreading a report that Jesus was risen again; whence great confusion arose. The high priest then commanded, under pain of anathema, that no one should talk of Jesus of Nazareth. And so there arose a great persecution, and many were stoned and many beaten, and many banished from the land, because they could not hold their peace on such a matter.

The news reached Nazareth how that Jesus, their fellow citizen, having died on the cross was risen again. Whereupon, he that writes prayed the mother of Jesus that she would be pleased to leave off weeping, because her son was risen again. Hearing this, the Virgin Mary, weeping, said: 'Let us go to Jerusalem to find my son. I shall die content when I have seen him.'


Chapter 219

The Virgin returned to Jerusalem with him who writes, and James and John, on that day on which the decree of the high priest went forth.

Whereupon, the Virgin, who feared God, albeit she knew the decree of the high priest to be unjust, commanded those who dwelt with her to forget her son. Then how each one was affected! God who discerns the heart of men knows that between grief at the death of Judas whom we believed to be Jesus our master, and the desire to see him risen again, we, with the mother of Jesus, were consumed.

So the angels that were guardians of Mary ascended to the third heaven, where Jesus was in the company of angels, and recounted all to him.

Wherefore Jesus prayed God that he would give him power to see his mother and his disciples. Then the merciful God commanded his four favourite angels, who are Michael, Gabriel, Rafael, and Uriel, to bear Jesus into his mother's house, and there keep watch over him for three days continually, suffering him only to be seen by them that believed in his doctrine.

Jesus came, surrounded with splendour, to the room where abode Mary the Virgin with her two sisters, and Martha and Mary Magdalen, and Lazarus, and him who writes, and John and James and Peter. Whereupon, through fear they fell as dead. And Jesus lifted up his mother and the others from the ground, saying: 'Fear not, for I am Jesus; and weep not, for I am alive and not dead.' They remained every one for a long time beside himself at the presence of Jesus, for they altogether believed that Jesus was dead. Then the Virgin, weeping, said: 'Tell me, my son, wherefore God, having given you power to raise the dead. suffered you to die, to the shame of your kinsfolk and friends, and to the shame of your doctrine? For every one that loves you has been as dead.'


Chapter 220

Jesus replied, embracing his mother: 'Believe me, mother, for truly I say to you that I have not been dead at all; for God has reserved me till near the end of the world.' And having said this he prayed the four angels that they would manifest themselves, and give testimony how the matter had passed.

Thereupon the angels manifested themselves like four shining suns, insomuch that through fear every one again fell down as dead.

Then Jesus gave four linen cloths to the angels that they might cover themselves, in order that they might be seen and heard to speak by his mother and her companions. And having lifted up each one, he comforted them, saying: 'These are the ministers of God: Gabriel, who announces God's secrets; Michael, who fights against God's enemies; Rafael, who receives the souls of them that die; and Uriel, who will call every one to the judgment of God at the last day.

Then the four angels narrated to the Virgin how God had sent for Jesus, and had transformed Judas, that he might suffer the punishment to which he had sold another.

Then said he who writes: 'O Master, is it lawful for me to question you now, as it was lawful for me when you dwelt with us?'

Jesus answered: 'Ask what you please, Barnabas, and I will answer you.'

Then said he who writes: 'O Master, seeing that God is merciful, wherefore has he so tormented us, making us to believe that you were dead? and your mother has so wept for you that she has been near to death; and you, who are an holy one of God, on you has God suffered to fall the calumny that you were slain amongst robbers on the Mount Calvary?'

Jesus answered: 'Believe me, Barnabas, that every sin, however small it be, God punishes with great punishment, seeing that God is offended at sin. Wherefore, since my mother and my faithful disciples that were with me loved me a little with earthly love, the righteous God has willed to punish this love with the present grief, in order that it may not be punished in the flames of hell. And though I have been innocent in the world, since men have called me "God," and "Son of God," God, in order that I be not mocked of the demons on the day of judgment, has willed that I be mocked of men in this world by the death of Judas, making all men to believe that I died upon the cross. And this mocking shall continue until the advent of Muhammad, the Messenger of God, who, when he shall come, shall reveal this deception to those who believe in God's Law.

Having thus spoken, Jesus said: 'You are just, O Lord our God, because to you only belongs honour and glory without end.'

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Chapter 221

Jesus turned himself to him who writes, and said: "Barnabas, see that by all means you write my gospel concerning all that has happened through my dwelling in the world. And write in a similar manner that which has befallen Judas, in order that the faithful may be undeceived, and every one may believe the truth."

Then answered he who writes: "I will do so, if God wills, O Master; but I do not know what happened to Judas, for I did not see it."

Jesus answered: "Here are John and Peter who saw everything, and they will tell you all that has passed."

And then Jesus commanded us to call his faithful disciples [so] that they might see him. So James and John called together the seven disciples with Nicodemus and Joseph, and many others of the seventy-two, and they ate with Jesus.

The third day Jesus said: "Go to the Mount of Olives with my mother, for there I will ascend again to heaven, and you will see who shall bear me up."

So they all went there except twenty-five of the seventy-two disciples, who for fear had fled to Damascus. And as they all stood in prayer, at midday Jesus came with a great multitude of angels who were praising God: and the splendour of his face made them greatly afraid and they fell with their faces to the ground. But Jesus lifted them up, comforting them, and saying: "Do not be afraid, I am your master."

And he reproved many who believed that he had died and risen again, saying: "Do you hold me and God for liars? I said to you that God has granted to me to live almost to the end of the world. Truly I say to you, I did not die; it was Judas the traitor. Beware, for Satan will make every effort to deceive you. Be my witnesses in Israel, and throughout the world, of all things that you have heard and seen."

And having said this, he prayed God for the salvation of the faithful, and the conversion of sinners. And his prayer ended, he embraced his mother, saying: "Peace be to you, my mother. Rest in God who created you and me." And having said this, he turned to his disciples, saying: "May God's grace and mercy be with you."

Then before their eyes the four angels carried him up into heaven.

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Chapter 222

After Jesus had departed, the disciples scattered through the different parts of Israel and of the world, and the truth, hated of Satan, was persecuted, as it always is, by falsehood. For certain evil men, pretending to be disciples, preached that Jesus died and rose not again. Others preached that he really died, but rose again. Others preached, and yet preach, that Jesus is the Son of God, among whom is Paul deceived. But we - as much as I have written, that preach we to those who fear God, that they may be saved in the last day of God's Judgment. Amen.

END OF THE GOSPEL


Read prophesies about Jesus (pbuh) in the following two articles:

Dajjal - the AntiChrist
Yajuj wa Majuj (Gog and Magog).