199 Wherefore, by reason of this confidence, knowledge is departed from them; and a rash presumption is entered into them.
200 But they carry themselves high, and as prudent men; and though they are fools, yet would seem to be teachers.
201 Now by reason of this folly many of them, whilst they magnify themselves, are become vain and empty. For boldness and vain confidence is a [*1] very evil spirit.
202 Wherefore many of these are cast away; but others acknowledging their error, have repented, and submitted themselves to those who are knowing.
203 And to all the rest of this kind there is repentance allowed; forasmuch as they were not so much wicked as foolish, as void of understanding.
204 If these therefore shall repent, they shall live unto God; but if not, they shall dwell with those women, who shall exercise their wickedness upon them.
205 For what concerns the sixth mountain having greater and lesser clefts, they are such as have believed; but those in which were lesser clefts are they who have had controversies among themselves; and by reason of their quarrels languish in the faith;
206 Nevertheless many of these have repented, and so will the rest when they shall hear my commands; for their controversies are but small, and they will easily return unto repentance.
207 But those who have the greater clefts, will be as stiff stones, mindful of grudges and offences, and full of anger among themselves. These therefore are cast from the tower, and refused to be put into its building; for this kind of men shall hardly live.
208 Our God and Lord, who ruleth over all things, and has power over all his creatures, will not remember our offences, but is easily appeased by those who confess their sins: but man being[p. 262]
languid, mortal, infirm, and full of sins, perseveres in his anger against man; as if it were in his power to save or destroy him.
209 But I, as the angel who am set over your repentance, admonish you, that whosoever among you has any such purpose he should lay it aside, and return unto repentance; and the Lord will heal your former sins, if you shall purge yourselves from this evil spirit; but if you shall not do it, ye shall be delivered to him unto death.
210 As for the seventh mountain in which the grass was green and flourishing, and the whole mountain faithful; and all kind of cattle fed upon the grass of it, and the more the grass was eaten so much the more it flourished:
211 They are such as believed, and were always good and upright; and without any differences among themselves, but still rejoiced in the servants of God, having put on the spirit of these virgins; and been always forward to shew mercy to all men, readily giving to all men of their labours without upbraiding, and without deliberation.
212 Wherefore the Lord seeing their simplicity and [*1] innocence, has increased them in the works of their hands, and given them grace in all their works.
213 But I, who am the angel appointed over your repentance, exhort you, that as many as are of this kind would continue in the same purpose, that your seed may not be rooted out forever.
214 For the Lord hath tried you, and written you into our number; and all your seed shall dwell with the Son of God; for ye are all of his spirit.
215 As concerning the eighth mountain in which were a great many springs, by which every kind of all the creatures of God was watered; they are such as have believed the Apostles which the Lord sent into all the world to preach;
216 And [*2] some of them being teachers have preached and taught purely and sincerely, and have not in the least yielded to any evil desires, but have constantly walked in righteousness and truth.
217 These therefore have their conversations among the angels.
218 Again; as for what concerns the ninth mountain which is desert, and full of serpents; they are such as have believed, but had many stains:
219 These are such ministers as discharge their ministry amiss; ravishing away the goods of the widows and fatherless; and serve themselves, not others, out of those things which they have received.
220 These, if they continue in this covetousness, have delivered themselves unto death, nor shall there be any hope of life for them. But if they shall be converted, and shall discharge their ministry sincerely, they may live.
221 As for those which were found rough, they are such as have denied the name of the Lord, and not returned again to the Lord, but have become savage and wild; not applying themselves to the servants of God; but being separated from them, have for a little carelessness lost their lives.
222 For as a vine that is forsaken in a hedge, and never[p. 263]
dressed, perishes and is choked by the weeds, and in time becomes wild, and ceases to be useful to its lord; so this kind of men despairing of themselves, and being soured, have begun to be unprofitable to their Lord.
223 Howbeit to these there is, after all, repentance allowed, if they shall not be found from their hearts to have denied Christ; but if any of these shall be found to have denied him from his heart, I cannot tell whether such a one can attain unto life.
224 I say therefore that if any one hath denied, he should in these days return unto repentance; for it cannot be that any one who now denies the Lord, can afterwards attain unto salvation: nevertheless repentance is proposed unto them who have formerly denied.
225 But he who will repent must hasten on his repentance, before the building of this tower is finished: otherwise he shall be delivered by those women unto death.
226 But they that are maimed are the deceitful; and those who mix with one another, these are the serpents that you saw mingled in that mountain.
227 For as the poison of serpents is deadly unto men; so the words of such persons infect and destroy men. They are therefore maimed in their faith, by reason of that kind of life which they lead.
228 Howbeit some of them, having repented, have been saved, and so shall others of the same kind be also saved, if they shall repent; but if not, they shall die by those women whose power and force they possess.
229 For what concerns the tenth mountain, in which were the trees covering the cattle, they are such as have believed, and some of them have been bishops, that is, governors of the churches.
230 Others, are such stones as have not feignedly, but with a cheerful mind entertained the servants of God.
231 Then such as have been set over inferior ministries; and have protected the poor and the widows; and have always kept a chaste conversation: therefore they also are protected by the Lord.
232 Whosoever shall do on this wise, are honored with the Lord; and their place is among the angels, if they shall continue to obey the Lord even unto the end.
233 As to the eleventh mountain in which were trees loaded with several sorts of fruits, they are such as have believed, and suffered death, for the name of the Lord; and have endured with a ready mind, and have given up their lives with all their hearts.
234 And I said, Why then, sir, have all these fruit indeed, but yet some fairer than others?
235 Hearken, said he: Whosoever have suffered for the name of the Lord are esteemed honourable by the Lord; and all their offences are blotted out, because they have suffered death for the name of the Son of God.
236 Hear now, why their fruits are different, and some of them excel others, they who being brought before magistrates, and being asked, denied not the Lord, but suffered with a ready mind; these are more honourable with the Lord. The fruits therefore that are the most fair are these.[p. 264]
237 But they who were fearful and doubtful, and have deliberated with themselves whether they should confess or deny Christ, and yet have suffered; their fruits are smaller, because that this thought came into their hearts.
238 For it is a wicked and evil thought for a servant to deliberate whether he should deny his master. Take heed therefore ye who have such thoughts, that this mind continue not in you, and ye die unto God.
239 But ye who suffer death for his name sake, ought to honour the Lord, that he has esteemed you worthy to bear his name; and that you should be delivered from all your sins.
240 And why therefore do you not rather esteem yourselves happy? Yea think verily that if any one among you suffer, he performs a great work? For the Lord giveth you life, and ye understand it not. For your offences did oppress you; and if ye had not suffered for his name sake, ye had now been dead unto the Lord,
241 Wherefore I speak this unto you who deliberate whether ye should confess or deny him; confess that ye have the Lord for your God; lest at any time denying him, ye be delivered not into bonds.
242 For all nations punish their servants which deny their masters; what think you that the Lord will do unto you, who has the power of all things?
243 Remove therefore out of hearts these doubts, that ye may live forever unto God.
244 As for the twelfth mountain, which was white, they are such as have believed like sincere children, into whose thoughts there never came any malice, nor have they ever known what sin was, but have always continued in their integrity.
245 Wherefore this kind of men shall without all doubt inherit the kingdom of God; because they have never in any thing defiled the commandments of God, but have continued with sincerity in the same condition all the days of their life.
246 Whosoever therefore, said he, shall continue as children without malice; shall be more honourable than all those of whom I have yet spoken: for all such children are honoured by the Lord, and esteemed the first of all.
247 Happy therefore are ye who shall remove all malice from you, and put on innocence; because ye shall first see the Lord.
248 And after he had thus ended his explication of all the mountains, I said unto him, Sir, show me now also what concerns the stones that were brought out of the plain, and put into the tower in the room of those that were rejected:
249 As also concerning those round stones which were added into the building of the tower: and also of those who still continued round.
250 Hear now, says he, concerning those stones which were brought out of the plain into the building of the tower, and placed in the room of those that were rejected; they are the roots of that white mountain.
251 Wherefore because those who have believed of that mountain were very innocent; the lord of this tower commanded that they which were of the roots of this mountain should be placed into the building.[p. 265]
252 For he knew that if they were put into this building they would continue bright; nor would any of them any more be made black.
253 But if he had added on this manner from the rest of the mountains, he would [*1] almost have needed again to visit the tower and to cleanse it.
254 Now all these white stones are the young men who have believed, or shall believe; for they are all of the same kind. Happy is this kind, because it is innocent.
255 Hear now also concerning those round and bright stones: all these are of this white mountain. But they are therefore found round, because their riches have a little darkened them from the truth and dazzled their eyes:
256 Howbeit they have never departed from the Lord, nor has any wicked word proceeded out of their mouths; but all righteousness, and virtue, and truth.
257 When therefore the Lord saw their mind, and that they might adorn the truth; he commanded that they should continue good, and that their riches should be pared away:
258 For he would not have them taken wholly away, to the end they might do some good with that which was left, and live unto God; because they also are of a good kind.
259 Therefore was there a little cut off from them, and so they were put into the building of this tower.
260 As for the rest which continued still round, and were not found fit for the building [*2] of this tower, because they have not yet received the seal; they were carried back to their place, because they were found very round.
261 But this present world must be cut away from them, and the vanities of their riches; and then they will be fit for the kingdom of God. For they must enter into the kingdom of God, because God has blessed this innocent kind.
262 Of this kind therefore none shall fall away; for though any of them being tempted by the devil should offend, he shall soon return to his Lord God.
263 I the angel of repentance esteem you happy, whosoever are innocent as little children, because your portion is good and honourable with the Lord.
264 And I say unto all you who have received this seal; keep simplicity, and remember not the offences which are committed against you, nor continue in malice, or in bitterness, through the memory of offences.
265 [*3] But become one spirit, and provide remedies for these evil rents, and remove them from you; that the lord of the sheep may rejoice [*4] at it; [*5] for he will rejoice, if he shall find all whole.
266 But if any of these sheep shall be found scattered away, Wo shall be to the shepherds; but and if the shepherds themselves shall be scattered; what will they answer to [*6] the lord of the sheepfold? Will they say that they were troubled by the[p. 266]
sheep? But they shall not be believed.
267 For it is an incredible thing that the shepherd should suffer by his flock; and he shall be the more punished for his lie.
268 Now I am the shepherd; and especially must give an account of you.
269 Wherefore take care of yourselves whilst the tower is yet building. The Lord dwells in those that love peace; for peace is beloved; but he is far off from the contentious, and those who are [*1] full of malice.
270 Wherefore restore unto him the spirit entire, as ye received it. [*2] For if thou shalt give unto a fuller a garment new and whole, thou wilt expect to receive it whole again; if therefore the fuller shall restore it unto thee torn, wouldest thou receive it?
271 Wouldst thou not presently be angry; and reproach him, saying; I gave my garment to thee whole; why hast thou rent it, and made it useless to me? Now it is of no use to me, by reason of the rent which thou hast made in it. Wouldst thou not say all this to a fuller, for the rent which he made in thy garment?
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