Monday, June 20, 2016
God has not locked up his mercy in Israel alone
'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."
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."
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.
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: ' God of our fathers, God of Abraham;, God of Ishmael ;and Lord of Isaac;, 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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