THEN Jesus stretched forth his hand, and said, Come to me, all ye my saints, who were created in my image, who were condemned by the tree of forbidden fruit, and by the devil and death;
2 Live now by the wood of my cross; the devil, the prince of this world, is overcome, and death is conquered.
3 Then presently all the saints were joined together under the hand of the most high God; and the Lord Jesus laid hold on Adam's hand and said to him, Peace be to thee, and all thy righteous posterity, which is mine.
4 Then Adam, casting himself at the feet of Jesus, addressed himself to him, with tears, in humble language, and a loud voice, saying, [*1]
5 I will extol thee, O Lord, for thou hast lifted me up, and hast not made my foes to rejoice over me. O Lord my God, I cried unto thee, and thou hast healed me.
6 O Lord thou hast brought up my soul from the grave; thou hast kept me alive, that I should not go down to the pit.
7 Sing unto the Lord, all ye saints of his, and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness. For his anger endureth but for a moment; in his favour is life.
8 In like manner all the saints, prostrate at the feet of Jesus, said with one voice, Thou art come, O Redeemer of the world, and hast actually accomplished all things, which thou didst foretell by the law and thy holy prophets.
9 Thou hast redeemed the living by thy cross, and art come down to us, that by the death of the cross thou mightest deliver us from hell, and by thy power from death.
10 O, Lord, as thou hast put the ensigns of thy glory in heaven, and hast set up the sign of[p. 87]
thy redemption, even thy cross on earth! so, Lord, set the sign of the victory of thy cross in hell, that death may have do minion no longer.
11 Then the Lord stretching forth his hand, made the sign of the cross upon Adam, and upon all his saints.
12 And taking hold of Adam by his right hand, he ascended from hell, and all the saints of God followed him.
13 Then the royal prophet David boldly cried, and said, [*1] O sing unto the Lord a new song, for he hath done marvellous things; his right hand and his holy arm have gotten him the victory.
14 The Lord hath made known his salvation, his righteousness hath he openly shewn in the sight of the heathen.
15 And the whole multitude of saints answered, saying, [*2] This honour have all his saints, Amen, Praise ye the Lord.
16 Afterwards, the prophet Habakkuk [*3] cried out, and said, Thou wentest forth for the salvation of thy people, even for the salvation of thy people.
17 And all the saints said, [*4] Blessed is he who cometh in the name of the Lord; for the Lord hath enlightened us. This is our God for ever and ever; he shall reign over us to everlasting ages, Amen.
18 In like manner all the prophets spake the sacred things of his praise, and followed the Lord.
1 Christ delivers Adam to Michael the archangel. 3. They meet Enoch and Elijah in heaven, 5 and also the blessed thief, who relates how he cares to Paradise.
THEN the Lord holding Adam by the hand, delivered him to Michael the archangel; and he led them into Paradise, filled with mercy and glory;
2 And two very ancient men met them, and were asked by the saints, Who are ye, who have not yet been with us in hell, and have had your bodies placed in Paradise?
3 One of them answering, said, I am Enoch, who was translated by the word of God: [*5] and this man who is with me, is Elijah the Tishbite, who was translated in a fiery chariot. [*6]
4 Here we have hitherto been, and have not tasted death, but are now about to return at the coming of Antichrist, being armed with divine signs and miracles, to engage with him in battle, and to be slain by him at Jerusalem, and to be taken up alive again into the clouds, after three days and a half. [*7]
5 And while the holy Enoch and Elias were relating this, behold there came another man in a miserable figure carrying the sign of the cross upon his shoulders.
6 And when all the saints saw him, they said to him, Who art thou? For thy countenance is like a thief's; and why dost thou carry a cross upon thy shoulders?
7 To which he answering, said, Ye say right, for I was a thief who committed all sorts of wickedness upon earth.
8 And the Jews crucified me with Jesus; and I observed the surprising things which happened[p. 88]
in the creation at the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus.
9 And I believed him to be the Creator of all things, and the Almighty King; and I prayed to him, saying, Lord, remember me, when thou comest into thy kingdom.
10 He presently regarded my supplication, and said to me, Verily I say unto thee, this day thou shalt be with me in Paradise. [*1]
11 And he gave me this sign of the cross saying, Carry this, and go to Paradise; and if the angel who is the guard of Paradise will not admit thee, shew him the sign of the cross, and say unto him: Jesus Christ who is now crucified, hath sent me hither to thee.
12 When I did this, and told the angel who is the guard of Paradise all these things, and he heard them, he presently opened the gates, introduced me, and placed me on the right-hand in Paradise,
13 Saying, Stay here a little time, till Adam, the father of all mankind, shall enter in, with all his sons, who are the holy and righteous servants of Jesus Christ, who was crucified.
14 When they heard all this account from the thief, all the patriarchs said with one voice, Blessed be thou, O Almighty God, the Father of everlasting goodness, and the Father of mercies, who hast shewn such favour to those who were sinners against him, and hast brought them to the mercy of Paradise, and hast placed them amidst thy large and spiritual provisions, in a spiritual and holy life. Amen.
1 Charinus and Lenthius being only allowed three days to remain on earth, 7 deliver in their narratives, which miraculously correspond; they vanish, 13 and Pilate records these transactions.
THESE are the divine and sacred mysteries which we saw and heard. I, Charinus and Lenthius are not allowed to declare the other mysteries of God, as the archangel Michael ordered us,
2 Saying, ye shall go with my brethren to Jerusalem, and shall continue in prayers, declaring and glorifying the resurrection of Jesus Christ, seeing he hath raised you from the dead at the same time with himself.
3 And ye shall not talk with any man, but sit as dumb persons till the time come when the Lord will allow you to relate the mysteries of his divinity.
4 The archangel Michael farther commanded us to go beyond Jordan, to an excellent and fat country, where there are many who rose from the dead along with us for the proof of the resurrection of Christ.
5 For we have only three days allowed us from the dead, who arose to celebrate the passover of our Lord with our parents, and to bear our testimony for Christ the Lord, and we have been baptized in the holy river of Jordan. And now they are not seen by any one.
6 This is as much as God allowed us to relate to you; give ye therefore praise and honour to him, and repent, and he will have mercy upon you. Peace be to you from the Lord God Jesus[p. 89]
Click to enlarge
THE BAPTISM OF CHRIST IN THE JORDAN. FROM A ''BOOK OF THE EVANGELISTS.'' GREEK MANUSCRIPT OF THE TWELFTH CENTURY.
7 And after they had made an end of writing and had wrote in two distinct pieces of paper, Charinus gave what he wrote into the hands of Annas, and Caiaphas, and Gamaliel.
8 Lenthius likewise gave what he wrote into the hands of Nicodemus and Joseph; and immediately they were changed into exceeding white forms and were seen no more.
9 But what they had wrote was found perfectly to agree, the one not containing one letter more or less than the other.
10 When all the assembly of the Jews heard all these surprising relations of Charinus and Lenthius, they said to each other, Truly all these things were wrought by God, and blessed be the Lord Jesus for ever and ever, Amen.
11 And they went about with great concern, and fear, and trembling, and smote upon their breasts and went away every one to his home.
12 But immediately all these things which were related by the Jews in their synagogues concerning Jesus, were presently told by Joseph and Nicodemus to the governor.
13 And Pilate wrote down all these transactions, and placed all these accounts in the public records of his hall.
1 Pilate goes to the temple; calls together the rulers, and scribes, and doctors. 2 Commands the gates to be shut; orders the book of the Scripture; and causes the Jews to relate what they really knew concerning Christ. 14 They declare that they crucified Christ in ignorance, and that they now know him to be the Son of God, according to the testimony of the Scriptures; which, after they put him to death, they are examined.
AFTER these things Pilate went to the temple of the Jews, and called together all the rulers and scribes, and doctors of the law, and went with them into a chapel of the temple.
2 And commanding that all the gates should be shut, said to them, I have heard that ye have a certain large book in this temple; I desire you therefore, that it may be brought before me.
3 And when the great book, carried by four ministers of the temple, and adorned with gold and precious stones, was brought, Pilate said to them all, I adjure you by the God of your Fathers, who made and commanded this temple to be built, that ye conceal not the truth from me.
4 Ye know all the things which are written in that book; tell me therefore now, if ye in the Scriptures have found any thing of that Jesus whom ye crucified, and at what time of the world he ought to have come: shew it me.
5 Then having sworn Annas and Caiaphas, they commanded all the rest who were with them to go out of the chapel.
6 And they shut the gates of the temple and of the chapel, and said to Pilate, Thou hast made us to swear, O judge, by the building of this temple, to declare to thee that which is true and right.
7 After we had crucified Jesus, not knowing that he was the Son of God, but supposing he wrought his miracles by some magical arts, we summoned a large assembly in this temple.
8 And when we were deliberating among one another about[p. 90]
the miracles which Jesus had wrought, we found many witnesses of our own country, who declared that they had seen him alive after his death, and that they heard him discoursing with his disciples, and saw him ascending unto the height of the heavens, and entering into them;
9 And we saw two witnesses, whose bodies Jesus raised from the dead, who told us of many strange things which Jesus did among the dead, of which we have a written account in our hands.
10 And it is our custom annually to open this holy book before an assembly, and to search there for the counsel of God.
11 And we found in the first of the seventy books, where Michael the archangel is speaking to the third son of Adam the first man, an account that after five thousand five hundred years, Christ the most beloved Son of God was come on earth,
12 And we further considered, that perhaps he was the very God of Israel who spoke to Moses, Thou shalt make the ark of the testimony; two cubits and a half shall be the length thereof, and a cubit and a half the breadth thereof, and a cubit and a half the height thereof. [*1]
13 By these five cubits and a half for the building of the ark of the Old Testament, we perceived and knew that in five thousand years and a half (one thousand) years, Jesus Christ was to come in the ark or tabernacle of a body;
14 And so our scriptures testify that he is the son of God, and the Lord and King of Israel.
15 And because after his suffering, our chief priests were surprised at the signs which were wrought by his means, we opened that book to search all the generations down to the generation of Joseph and Mary the mother of Jesus, supposing him to be of the seed of David;
16 And we found the account of the creation, and at what time he made the heaven and the earth and the first man Adam, and that from thence to the flood, were two thousand, two hundred and twelve years.
17 And from the flood to Abraham, nine hundred and twelve. And from Abraham to Moses, four hundred and thirty. And from Moses to David the king, five hundred and ten.
18 And from David to the Babylonish captivity, five hundred years. And from the Babylonish captivity to the incarnation of Christ, four hundred years.
19 The sum of all which amounts to five thousand and half (a thousand).
20 And so it appears, that Jesus whom we crucified, is Jesus Christ the Son of God, and true and Almighty God. Amen.
In the name of the Holy Trinity, thus end the Acts of our Saviour Jesus Christ, which the Emperor Theodosius the Great found at Jerusalem, in the hall of Pontius Pilate among the public records; the things were acted in the nineteenth year of Tiberius Caesar, Emperor of the Romans, and in the seventeenth year of the government of Herod the son of Herod king of Galilee, on the eighth of the calends of April, which is the twenty-third[p. 91]
day of the month of March, in the CCIId Olympiad, when Joseph and Caiaphas were Rulers of the Jews; being a History written in Hebrew by Nicodemus, of what happened after our Saviour's crucifixion.
^64:1 Matt. xiii. 55, and John vi. 42.
^64:2 John v. 17, 18. Mark xv. 2.
^64:3 Matt. xii. 2, &c.; Luke xiii. 14. John, v. 18.
^64:4 Exod. xx. 8, &c.
^64:5 Matt. vi. 24, and xi. 5.
^64:6 Matt. iv. 34, and xii. 24, &c.
^64:7 Matt. xxi. 8, 9, &c.
^66:1 Matt. xxvii. 19.
^66:2 John v. 17, 18; Mark xv. 2.
^67:1 3 John x. 32
^67:2 John xviii. 31, &c.
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