The Lost Books of the Bible

^221:3 So MS. Lamb. Tardius accipias: and so the Gr. Bradyteron lambaneis.

^221:4 Asking the petition of thy soul.

^221:5 In everything.

^222:1 Without sense thou dost not understand it.

^222:2 So the Lat. Vers. But the Gr. of Athanasius is better: And destroyeth more than any other spirit.

^222:3 Questions.

^222:4 Vid. Epit. Oxon. p. 70 b. Comp. 2 Cor. vii. 10.

^222:5 Lat. Sensus: from the Greek Noys.

^223:1 And understand nothing at all, thinking of riches. Lat.

^223:2 Senses.

^223:3 Gr. of Athanasius, Kardian exontes pros kyrion. So that the Latin should be Habentes, not Habent.

^223:4 Gr. synesis polle.

^223:5 Gr. panta noeseis. And so in the Lamb. MS. Omnia scies.

^223:6 Gr. ektribei. MS. Lamb. Contribulat.

^223:7 In the Greek of Athanasius, follows kai poiesei ti kakon, and he doth something which is ill. Which letter agrees with what follows, Because he hath done amiss. The text in this place being evidently corrupted, it has been endeavoured to restore the true sense of it from the Greek of Athanasius, which is as follows: palin e lype eisporeyetai eis ten kardian toy anthrupon toy oxyxolesantos, kai lypeitai epi tei praxei ayton ei epraxen kai metanoei oti poneron eirgasato. Ayte oyn e lype dokei suterian exein, oti to poneron praxas metenoesen. Amfoterai de tun praxeun lypoysi, &c.

^223:8 Antioch. Hom. xxv.

^223:9 Gr. Me thlibe, MS. Lamb. Noli nocere.

^223:10 Gr. Me enteyxetai tui theui, Comp. Rom. vii. 27.

^223:11 Gr. To dothen eis ten sarka, tayten lypen oyk ypoferei.

^223:12 Gr. lypes.

^223:13 So the Greek: o de lyperos aner pantote ponereyetai, pruton men ponereytai, &c.

^224:1 Church of the living.

^224:2 Have the Spirit of God in them.

^224:3 Exinanitur.

^224:4 Something was wanting in this place to make the subject clear. and it was suggested to Archbishop Wake, by Dr. Grabe, that what should have followed was transposed into the next command. Accordingly the Archbishop reduced both places to what he conceived should be their true order, and in that state they now stand.

^224:5 Vessels.

^225:1 Vid. Antioch. Hom. lxxiv.

^225:2 MS. Lamb. Consumitur, et, Gr. Athanas. dapanatai.

^225:3 Gr. Athaenas. empefyrmenoys tui aiuni toytui. Instead of implicateos, the Lat. Vers. should be Implicatos.

^226:1 That the words here inserted, and removed into their proper place in the foregoing Command, do not belong to this Discourse, the Greek of Athanasius, in which they are all omitted, clearly shews.

^227:1 Ut dominetur.

^227:2 Angel.

^227:3 Gr. elpizontun eis Ayton.

^227:4 Origen. in Matt. xxiv. 42.

^228:1 Angel.

^228:2 Vid. Antioch. Hom. lxxvii.

^228:3 MS. Lamb. Qui obliti estis Deum, et salutem vestram.

^228:4 What follows should be corrected thus; Et qui adjicientes peccatis vestris, gravatis vitam vestram.

The Lost Books of the Bible, [1926], at

The Third Book of HERMAS, which is called his SIMILITUDES.


That seeing we have no abiding city in this world, we ought to look after that which is to come.

AND he said unto me; [*5] Ye know that ye who are the servants of the Lord, live here as in a pilgrimage; for your city is far off from this city.

2 If, therefore, ye know your city in which ye are to dwell, why do ye here buy estates, and provide yourselves with delicacies, and stately buildings, and superfluous houses? For he that provides himself these things in this city, does not think of returning into his own city.

3 O foolish, and doubtful, and wretched man; who understandest not that all these things belong to other men, and are under the power of another. For the Lord of this city saith unto thee; Either obey my laws, or depart out of my city.

4 What therefore shalt thou do who art subject to a law in thine own city? Canst thou for thy estate, or for any of those things which thou hast provided, deny thy law? But if thou shalt deny it, and wilt afterwards return into thy own city, thou shalt not be received, but shall be excluded thence.

5 See therefore, that like a man in another country, thou procure

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no more to thyself than what is necessary, and sufficient for thee? and be ready, that when the God or Lord of this city shall drive thee out of it, thou mayst oppose his law, and go into thine own city; where thou mayst with all cheerfulness live according to thine own law with no wrong.

6 Take heed therefore ye that serve God, and have him in your hearts: work ye the works of God, being mindful both of his commands and of his promises, which he has promised; and be assured that he will make them good unto you; if ye shall keep his commandments.

7 Instead therefore of the possessions that ye would otherwise purchase, redeem [*1] those that are in want from their necessities, as every one is able; justify the widows; judge the cause of the fatherless; and spend your riches and your wealth in such works as these.

8 For, for this end has God enriched you, that ye might fulfil these kind of services. It is much better to do this, than to buy lands or houses; because all such things shall perish with this present time.

9 But what ye shall do for the name of the Lord, ye shall find in your city, and shall have joy without sadness or fear. Wherefore covet not the riches of the heathen; for they are destructive to the servants of God.

10 [*2] But trade with your own riches which you possess, by which ye may attain unto everlasting joy.

11 And do not commit adultery, nor touch any other man’s wife, nor desire her; but covet that which is thy own business, and thou shalt be saved.


As the vine is supported by the elm, so is the rich man helped by the prayers of the poor.

AS I was walking into the field, and considered the elm and the vine, and thought with myself of their fruits, an angel appeared unto me, and said unto me; What is it that thou thinkest upon thus long within thyself?

2 And I said unto him, Sir, I think of this vine and this elm because their fruits are fair. And he said unto me; [*3] These two trees are set for a pattern to the servants of God.

3 And I said unto him, Sir, I would know in what the pattern of these trees which thou mentionest, does consist. Hearken, saith he; seest thou this vine and this elm; Sir, said I, I see them,

4 This vine, saith he, is fruitful, but the elm is a tree without fruit. Nevertheless this vine unless it were set by this elm, and supported by it, would not bear much fruit; but lying along upon the ground, would bear but ill fruit, because it did not hang upon the elm; whereas, being supported upon the elm, it bears fruit both for itself and for that.

5 See, therefore, how the elm gives no less, but rather more fruit, than the vine. How, Sir, said I, does it bear more fruit than the vine? Because, said he, the vine being supported upon the elm gives both much and good fruit; whereas, if it lay along upon the ground, it would bear but little, and that very ill too.

6 This similitude, therefore, is set forth to the servants of God;

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and it represents the rich and poor man. I answered, Sir, make this manifest unto me. Hear, said he; the rich man has wealth; howbeit towards the Lord he is poor; for he is [*1] taken up about his riches, and prays but little to the Lord; and the prayers which he makes are lazy and without force.

7 When, therefore, the rich man reaches out to the poor those things which he wants, the poor man prays unto the Lord for the rich; and God grants unto the rich man all good things, because the poor man is rich in prayer; and his requests have great power with the Lord.

8 Then the rich man ministers all things to the poor, because he perceives that he is heard by the Lord: and he the more willingly and without doubting, affords him what he wants, and takes care that nothing be lacking to him.

9 And the poor man gives thanks unto the Lord for the rich; because they do both their work from the Lord.

10 With men therefore, the elm is not thought to give any fruit; and they know not neither understand that its company being added to the vine, the vine bears a double increase, both for itself and for the elm.

11 Even so the poor praying unto the Lord for the rich, are heard by him; and their riches are increased, because they minister to the poor of their wealth. They are therefore both made partakers of each other’s good works.

12 Whosoever, therefore, shall do these things, he shall not be forsaken by the Lord, but shall be written in the book of life.

13 Happy are they who are rich, and perceive themselves to be increased: for he that is sensible of this, will be able to minister somewhat to others.


As the green trees in the winter cannot be distinguished from the dry; so neither can the righteous from the wicked in this present world.

AGAIN he showed me many trees whose leaves were shed, and which seemed to me to be withered, for they were all alike. And he said unto me, Seest thou these trees? I said, Sir, I see that they look like dry trees.

2 He answering, said unto me; These trees are like unto the men who live in the present world. I replied: Sir, why are they like unto dried trees? Because, said he, neither the righteous, nor unrighteous, are known from one another; but all are alike in this present world.

3 For this world is as the winter to the righteous men, [*2] because they are not known, but dwell among sinners.

4 As in the winter all the trees having lost their leaves, are like dry trees; nor can it be discerned which are dry and which are green: so in this present world neither the righteous nor wicked are discerned from each other; but they are all alike.


As in the summer the living trees are distinguished from the dry by their fruit and green leaves; so in the world to come the righteous shall be distinguished from the unrighteous by their happiness.

AGAIN he showed me many other trees, of which some had leaves, and others appeared dry and withered. And he said unto me, Seest thou these trees? Ianswered, Sir, I see them; .and some are dry, and others full of leaves.

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2 These trees, saith he, which are green, are the righteous which shall possess the world to come. For the world to come, is the summer to the righteous; but to sinners it is the winter.

3 When, therefore, the mercy of the Lord shall shine forth, then they who serve God shall be made manifest, and plain unto all. For as in the summer the fruit of every tree is shown and made manifest, so also the works of the righteous shall be declared and made manifest, and they shall be restored in that world merry and joyful.

4 For the other [*1] kind of men, namely the wicked, like the trees which thou sawest dry, shall as such be found dry and without fruit in that other world; and like dry wood shall be burnt; and it shall be made manifest that they have done evil all the time of their life;

5 And they shall be burnt because they have sinned and have not repented of their sins. And also all the other nations shall be burnt, because they have not acknowledged God their Creator.

6 Do thou therefore bring forth good fruit, that in the summer thy fruit may be known; and keep thyself from much business, and thou shalt not offend. For they who are involved in much business, sin much; because they are taken up with their affairs, and serve not God.

7 And how can a man that does not serve God, ask anything of God, and receive it? But they who serve him, ask and receive what they desire.

8 But, if a man has only one thing to follow, he may serve

God, because his mind is not taken off from God but he serves him with a pure mind.

9 If, therefore, thou shalt do this, thou mayest have fruit in the world to come; and all, as many as shall do in like manner, shall bring forth fruit.


Of a true fast, and the rewards of it, also of the cleanliness of the body.

AS I was fasting, and sitting down in a certain mountain, and giving thanks unto God for

all the things that he had done [*2] unto me; behold I saw the shepherd, who was wont to converse with me, sitting by me, and saying unto me: What has brought thee hither thus early in the morning? I answered, Sir, today I keep a [*3] station.

2 He answered, What is a station? I replied, it is a fast. He said, What is that fast? I answered, I fast, as I have been wont to do. Ye know not, said he, what it is to fast unto God; nor is this a fast which ye fast, profiting nothing with God.

3 Sir, said I, what makes you speak thus? He replied, I speak it, because this is not the true fast which you think that you fast; but I will show you what that is which is a [*4] complete fast, and acceptable unto God.

4 Hearken, said he, The Lord does not desire such a needless fast: for by fasting in this manner, thou advancest nothing in righteousness.

5 [*5] But the true fast is this: Do nothing wickedly in thy life, but serve God with a pure mind; and keep his commandments and walk according to his precepts, nor suffer any wicked desire to enter into the mind.

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6 But trust in the Lord, that if thou dost these things, and fearest him, and abstaineth from every evil work, thou shalt live unto God.

7 If thou shalt do this, thou shalt perfect a great fast, and an acceptable one unto the Lord.

8 Hearken unto the similitude which I am about to propose unto thee, as to this matter.

9 A certain man having a farm, and many servants, planted a vineyard in a certain part of his estate for his posterity:

10 And taking a journey into a far country, chose one of his servants which he thought the most faithful and approved, and delivered the vineyard into his care; commanding him that he should take up the vines. Which if he did, and fulfilled his command, he promised to give him his liberty. Nor did he command him to do anything more; and so went into a far country.

11 And after that servant had taken that charge upon him, he did whatsoever his lord commanded him. And when he had staked the vineyard, and found it to be full of weeds, he began to think with himself, saying;

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