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The Apocryphal Old Testament Collection of the most important non-canonical Old Testament books designed for general use.

Chapter IX

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Text Commentary

1And those who were of Jeremiah's party rejoiced and offered sacrifice on the people's behalf continuously for nine days. 2On the tenth day Jeremiah alone offered sacrifice. 3And he prayed, saying, Holy, holy, holy, the Incense of the living trees, the true Light which 4lighteth me till I am taken up to thee, beyond the sweet voice of the two seraphim, and beyond the sweet smell of the incense of the cherubim. 1 So Eth.: ab ‘I beseech thee beyond another sweet smell of incense’. Michael, the archangel of righteousness, is my constant delight till he brings the righteous in. 2 So ab: Eth. ‘I beseech thee that Michael, skilled in song (the angel of righteousness is he), may hold open the gates of righteousness till they enter in’. I beseech thee, Almighty Lord of all creation, the Unbegotten and the Incomprehensible, in whom all judgement was hidden before these things came into being … And as Jeremiah was saying this, standing at the altar with Baruch and Abimelech, he sank into a death-like swoon. 3 Lit. ‘he became like one of those delivering up his soul’. And Baruch and Abimelech stayed there weeping and crying out aloud, Jeremiah our father, the priest of God, has left us and gone away. And all the people heard their wailing, and they all ran to them and saw Jeremiah lying dead upon the ground; and they rent their clothes and put dust on their heads and made a bitter lamentation. And afterwards they made preparations to bury him. And lo, a voice came, saying, Bury not a man who is still alive, because his soul is coming back into his body again. And when they heard the voice they did not bury him, but remained round his body 4 Lit. ‘his tabernacle’. Cp. 2 Cor. v. 1, 4 . for three days discussing, but not knowing, when he would rise up. And after three days his soul came back into his body, and he raised his voice in the middle of them all and said, Glorify God, glorify God, all of you, and also the Son of God who awakens us out of sleep, Jesus Christ, the Light of all the ages, the unquenchable Lamp, the Life of faith. After four hundred and seventy-seven years from now, he will come 5 Lit. ‘There are, after these times, other four hundred and seventy-seven years, and he comes’. to earth; and the Tree of Life, which was planted in the middle of Paradise will make all trees that are barren bear fruit, and they will grow and sprout. 6 So ab: Eth. adds ‘and their fruit will dwell with the angels’. And as for those that have sprouted and boast and say, We have thrust out our topmost branches to the sky 7 Lit. ‘We gave our end to the air’. – the Tree that is firmly rooted will make them wither, tall though they are, and will bend their branches to the earth. And it will make scarlet white like wool: snow will be turned black; and sweet water will become salt, 8 Eth. adds ‘and salt water will become sweet’. in the great light of the gladness of God. 17And he will bless the islands, so that they bear fruit by the word of the mouth of his Christ. 18For he will come and go out and choose for himself twelve apostles to preach the gospel among the Gentiles (I have seen him adorned by his Father and coming into the world on the mount of Olives); and he will feed the hungry souls. 19While Jeremiah was saying this about the coming of the Son of God into the world, the people 20became incensed and said, These are the very same words that were spoken by Isaiah, the son of Amoz, when he said, I beheld God and the Son of God. 21Come then: let us kill him, but not in the same way as we killed Isaiah: let us rather stone him to death. 22 And Baruch and Abimelech were much distressed by this madness, especially because they were anxious for a full account of the mysteries that he had seen. 23And Jeremiah said to them, Make no move, 9 Lit. ‘Be silent’. and do not weep, for they will not kill me until I have told you everything that I saw. 24And he said to them, Bring me a stone. 25And he set it up and said, Light of the ages, make this stone become like me. 26,27And the stone assumed the likeness of Jeremiah. And they stoned the stone, thinking that it was Jeremiah. 28And meanwhile he delivered all the mysteries he had seen to Baruch and Abimelech. 29Then, with the firm intention of bringing his stewardship to an end, he went and stood in the middle of the people. 30And the stone shouted out, saying, You foolish Israelites, why are you stoning me, under the impression that I am Jeremiah? Lo, Jeremiah is standing in the middle of you. 31And when they saw him, they bore down upon him at once with many stones. And his stewardship was fulfilled. 32And Baruch and Abimelech came and buried him; and they took the stone and set it up as a memorial to him, and inscribed these words upon it, This is the stone that came to the aid of Jeremiah. 10 a and b add ‘And the rest of the words of Jeremiah, and all his might, behold, are they not written in the Epistle of Baruch?’

Notes:

1 So Eth.: ab ‘I beseech thee beyond another sweet smell of incense’.

2 So ab: Eth. ‘I beseech thee that Michael, skilled in song (the angel of righteousness is he), may hold open the gates of righteousness till they enter in’.

3 Lit. ‘he became like one of those delivering up his soul’.

4 Lit. ‘his tabernacle’. Cp. 2 Cor. v. 1, 4 .

5 Lit. ‘There are, after these times, other four hundred and seventy-seven years, and he comes’.

6 So ab: Eth. adds ‘and their fruit will dwell with the angels’.

7 Lit. ‘We gave our end to the air’.

8 Eth. adds ‘and salt water will become sweet’.

9 Lit. ‘Be silent’.

10 a and b add ‘And the rest of the words of Jeremiah, and all his might, behold, are they not written in the Epistle of Baruch?’

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