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Topic: New Testament References to II Esdras

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New Testament References to II Esdras

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Apocalypse_Ezra.jpg

 

The chief argument against the Inspiration of the Apocrypha and, specifically, of the Apocalypse of Ezra (aka IV Esdras in some quarters), is that it is not referred to in the New Testament as the Books of the Old Testament are.  This, however, is far from the case as the verses below indicate.

The precise, detailed fulfillment of the Eagle from the Sea Vision in the History of the American Republic prove its Inspiration as well as early date for writing (i.e. before the times of Christ) and, when these realizations are made, then the material below is added authority to the Text's Angelic Origins.

To that could be added the only crystal clear reference to Nuclear War in the Scriptures (see conclusion) or any other ancient manuscript and we begin to see things a little clearer than some.

To address one argument presented by the Critics concerning the first two chapters being written by someone else the answer is simply that those two chapters were written immediately after he returned from viewing the City (Chap. 10:55-57 note especially 3:6) which he considered, possibly, more important than anything else he had seen or heard.  This event in the life of the Prophet would have been, to say the least, life changing and so it is that the last two chapters (also questioned by the critics) are presented after his work on transcribing is complete for he then had no need of visions his faith having become sight.

The material can be divided up into three sections being those references by Y'shua Himself and then the Apostles and, finally, the Early Church Fathers.  This latter group will have to wait simply because no one has bothered to Index any mention of II Esdras by them however, Clement of Alexandria (circa 150 AD) mentions the Saint and Conservapedia says the Book was popular with Ambrose but this is the third Century.  So, basically, I'm gonna have to go through the Antenicene Fathers again and look for references myself when I have the time.

"The book is considered an outstanding and valuable example of Jewish apocalyptic literature. It was widely cited by early Church Fathers, especially Ambrose of Milan.  The introitus of the traditional Requiem in the Catholic Church is drawn from 2 Esdras 2:34-35, 'Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them.' Several other liturgical prayers are taken from the book. Pope Clement VIII placed the book (in the Clementine Vulgate) in an appendix after the New Testament with the rest of the Apocrypha, 1 Esdras and Prayer of Manasseh and, "lest they perish entirely."

Most quotes below are from the King James Version but some, for clarity, come from Goodspeed's Translation of the Apocrypha (via Oxford) and some might be from the Revised Standard Version and one or two are my own.  The picture above has a link to a copy of the King James Version Copy of II Esdras for the Reader to follow the verses below as I only quote them in part.

Y'shua :

1) Blessed are those who believe without seeing - II Es Chapter 1: 37, "Though they have not seen me with physical eyes yet, in spirit, they believe the thing I say."  Keep in mind that Uriel may actually be Y'shua's Father incarnate.

2) Abba, Father - 2:5, "Oh Father, I call on you for a witness" which also calls to mind Y'shua's reference to "who is my mother and brethren?"

3) Father's goodwill to give you the Kingdom - 2:10, "Tell my people I will give them the Kingdom."

4) For the elect those days will be shortened - 2:13, "Pray for a few days to yourself that they may be shortened."  My translation yields the possibility that this is what Y'shua meant when He said to go into your closet to pray (to yourself as opposed to the "unto you" of the KJV) because His Father sees in secret.

5) "What I say unto you, I say unto all - Watch!" - 2:13, "The Kingdom is prepared for you - Watch!"

6) Dead bury the dead - 2:23, "Where ever you find the dead take them and  bury them."  The disparity is because they were no longer in the diaspora and the King (and thus Kingdom) was among them (see, "When Death meets Life" by Edersheim in his "Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah" to really appreciate this).  This, by the way, is inadvertent proof that this is not a production of the Church or this disparity would not exist in the text.  I would like to summarize Edersheim's passage but I fear I will not do it the justice it deserves (you really should read it) but in Ancient Israel everyone had to get out of the way when a Funeral Procession came by.  Everybody except one group of people.  When a Marriage Procession came down the street the mourners had to move out of their way.

7) The Beatitudes and Woetudes (Lk 6:20-26) -2:27, "When the Day of Trouble and Heaviness comes others shall weep and be sorrowful but you shall be merry and have abundance."

8) The child is not dead, just asleep - 2:31, "Remember thy children that sleep."

9) The Good Shepherd - 2:34, "O ye heathen that hear and understand, look for your Shepherd.  He shall give you everlasting rest for he is nigh at hand that shall come in the end of the world."  Hence, Y'shua called them, "My Sheep."

10) The Son of God (John Baptist, Y'shua, Apostles and entire Church) - 2:47, "It is the Son of God whom they have confessed in the world."  This referring to the Coronator which is the foundation for the Great Multitude Passage in Rev 7.

11) If I have told you earthly things - 4:21, "They on earth understand only earthly things and they of heaven only heavenly things."  Consider the implications if this is the motivation for the Hypostatic Union as far as the Inspiration of this Book is concerned.

12) The Father of the Prodigal hastens to greet His repentant son - 4:34, "You can't hasten more than the Highest and He hastens for many."  Goodspeed's Translation.  As one person said one time, "The only time God is in a hurry is to forgive repentant sinners."

13) The Time is fulfilled (Mk 1:15) - 4:37, "By measure He has measured the Times and by number He has numbered the Times and He does not move nor stir them until the said measure is fulfilled."  Specifically, the Times of Daniel's 69th Week.

14) Y'shua's lament about the lack of faith at His return - 5:1, "Land barren of faith."

15) If you can't do that which is least (Lk 12:26) - 5:36-40, "As you can not do any of these things that I have spoken of" (number the future, gather the scattered drops, make withered flowers green again, open closed places and bring forth the wind, show the image of a voice) "even so can you no find out my judgment."

16) Treasure hid in the Field - 6:5, "Gathered faith like a treasure" and 13:56, "the treasures of the Highest" (i.e. the Book of II Esdras records these very treasures) and 8:54, "the treasures of immortality" (a popular subject in this book) hidden in the Paradise Section - i.e. the Apocalypse of Ezra is, literally, the Treasure hidden in the Field and this author, being homeless at the time, went around collecting recyclables so that he could purchase his 1611 Anniversary Edition King James Version (Hendrickson Publishers, 6th Printing in China possibly by persecuted brothers and sisters in Christ, February my birth month, 2011) at about $5 a day (I was buying my food also) for about $30 (as I recall) took me the better part of a week walking anywhere from 10 to 20 miles a day in the - very hot and dry - Santa Ana, California sun to buy my copy of this Treasure!

17) Y'shua left their house desolate - 1:33, "Your House is desolate."  According to Peters in the Theocratic Kingdom, this is specifically the Throne of David (as the Priesthood and Sanhedrin were in existence and functioning).  This is direct reference to II Esdras by Y'shua and makes no since for a Gentile Church (or Jewish for that matter) to make reference to this after Y'shua made that decision.

18) This age and the age to come - 6:9, "Esau is the end of this 'world' [age] and Jacob the beginning of it that follows."

19) Eunuch for the Kingdom of Heaven's sake - 6:32, "He has seen your chastity which you have kept since your youth" specifically in anguish for his people.  Daniel (whom my Sunday School Teaching in the Military said was the greatest saint in the Bible there being no mention of any sin on his part) had no choice in the matter and Jeremiah was commanded to be chaste by Ezra made that decision on his own.  Basically, he is like one o the 144,000 "born out of due time" and Paul probably concluded the same things as those words imply.

20) Narrow Path Straight Gate - 7:6-14, "If, then, they that live labor not to enter these straight and vain [narrow] things, they can never receive those that are laid up for them."

21) Y'shua speaking of His impending death (the "cut off" of Daniel 9:26 is not clear as to His actual death) - 7:29, "After these years shall my son Christ die" which the Jews apply to Messiah ben Yosef who is the Lion of II Es 11-12 and specifically called "anointed."  The "another" that John Baptist meant ("or do we look for another").

22) Night comes when no man can work - 7:30, "I am come to show you the time of the night to come."  Probably referring, in context, to, "no man shall remain [to work?]"  Also note, "awakens" and also that Isaiah (21:12) makes no mention of 'work'.

23) Parable of the Sower - 8:41, "Husbandman sows much seed in the ground...yet the thing that is sown...comes not up neither does all that is planted take root." 

24) Pray that you be found worthy to escape all these things - 9:7, "Everyone that shall be saved and shall be able to escape by his works and by faith" which calls to mind Uncle James' Faith shown by his works which Fartin Luther wanted to butcher from the Canon.

25) Consider the Lilies of the Field - 9:17, "As the flowers are, such are the colors also."  Ezra, literally, was dormitioned in a field for more than a week, "If thou will cease yet for seven days...but go into a field of flowers...and eat only the flowers of the field and pray unto the Highest continually."

26) Whoever lives by the sword - 12:28,"The sword of one shall devour the other but at the last shall he fall through the sword himself."  There is, literally, no other place in Scripture that refers to this.

27) Let your light so shine - 12:42,"As a candle in a dark place" which Uncle Pete echoes (II Pet 1:19) as, "a light that shines in a dark place."

28) Lost sheep of Israel - II ES 11-13 - These chapters establish the Jewish Doctrine of the Ten Lost Tribes (which, arguably, the Church would not have conceived, crafted, compiled or composed - I like synonyms!) which they still believe to this day (which they certainly would not do if it was a production, project, preparation or presentation of said Church!).  See also Y'shua's claim to, "other sheep" pre-echoed in Ezra as, "another peaceable multitude."

29) Nation against Nation and Kingdom against Kingdom - 13:31, "One shall undertake to fight against another, one city against another, one place against another, one people [nation in Hebrew] against another and one realm [kingdom] against another."

30) Why Y'shua went homeless (I know the feeling) - 16:40, "Make you ready to the battle and in those evils be even as pilgrims upon the earth."  

31) Lazarus and Rich Man in Hell - This actually comes from a 'missing' section of II Esdras subsequently found in various manuscripts post 1611 (Syriac, Ethiopian - I'm guessing Origin cut it off, like the Protest Ants after him, cause it was too Jewish).  "The pit of torment shall be seen and opposite it the paradise of delight."  Note also Y'shua's words about the unsaved dying in their sins, "because they can now no longer make a good repentance."  Also, the Rich Man immediately is interned in hell, "some cross over immediately into torments" as opposed to some that wander in "dry places" (Y'shua in another passage), which Uriel states as,"they will not enter into habitations but wander about" (i.e. ghosts).  This section also tells of the reward of the just and the seventh reward is assuredly the source for the Liturgical Churches' Beatific Vision, "they press forward to see the face of Him whom they have served in life."  The practice of having communion on the graves of the martyrs, especially in the Roman Catacombs, also, assuredly, comes from this passage for, Ezra specifically asked Uriel about it who responded that they will tarry for seven days after death.

Apostles

1) Kingdom prepared from the Foundation of the World - 2:13, "The Kingdom is already prepared for you."

2) Clothed with immortality - 2:45, "Put off the mortal clothing and put on the immortal."

3) First Adam - 3:21, "The first Adam bearing a wicked heart transgressed."  I might add that the Church probably did not come up with this statement for, even though they don't specifically revere Adam, they are also not antagonistic too him.

"No longer do we reproach the Adam who was fashioned first; instead we glorify the second Adam."

4) We shall not all sleep - 6:26, "Who have not tasted death from their birth."  The origins of the Pretribulational Rapture - see also II Es 5:1 where (KJV) "received" is translated by Goodspeed as, "taken up."

5) Gentiles graft into the Israeli Root (Rom 11) - 5:28, "One Root."

6) Bride Comes - 7:26, "The Bride shall appear."

7) Jesus the Son of God - 7:28, "For my son Jesus shall be revealed."

8) Awake out of sleep - 7:31, "The world that yet awakens not shall be raised up."

9) Spiritual Warfare - 7:57, "The condition of the battle."

10) Overcomers and Victory (I John) - II Es 7:58.

11) Paradise (Rev 21) - 8: 52-53, "Tree of Life" etc.

12) Predestination and Foreknowledge (Paul and 1 Pet 1) - 9:8, "I have sanctified them for myself from the beginning."

13) Mystery of Iniquity - 9:19, "Corrupted by a perpetual seed and by a law unsearchable."

14) Pray without ceasing - 9:25, "Pray unto the Highest continually."

15) Times of Refreshment - 11:46, "That all the earth may be refreshed...that she may hope for the judgment and mercy of Him that made her."

16) As an Anchor sure and steadfast (Heb 6:19) - 12:42, "A haven or ship preserved from the tempest" and compare with Rev 2:5 where "whence thou art fallen" is actually, "blown off course."

17) Great Cloud of Witnesses - II Es 13 where the 'thousands' of Heaven the 1611 KJV marginal notes has an alternative translation of "clouds."

18) Abraham looked for a city - 13:36, "Sion shall come and shall be shown to all men being prepared and built."  Thus, Y'shua's many mansions and, "I go to prepare a place for you."

Conclusion

Of some interest are those things mentioned in II Ezra that are not mentioned any where else in the Bible.  It contains the only clear cut description of Nuclear War (Chap 15) where the Army from the East casts a "Star" Weapon (Hydrogen Bomb is, literally, a Star Weapon which India and China both have) to the earth destroying cities and walls, mountains and hills, trees and grass (by fire) and the cloud is horrible to look on, full of wrath and storm causing great fearfulness and trembling with strong winds raised up full of dust and smoke that ascend up to heaven - basically the worst parts of the Bible (Ezekiel hints at this when he said, "that sound you hear is not the echo of thunder returning off the mountains" - Hill paraphrase).

Preceding this period it is reported that, "victuals are so darn cheap upon earth they shall think themselves in good stead" and, as reported by Muscle & Body (Sept 2014, Pg. 18 as reported by the European Congress on Obesity) obesity has become a Global problem (for the first time since the flood) with a 500% increase in 20 years even among the remote areas of the Himalayan Mountain Villages.

Ezra closed the Old Testament Canon and that is because Uriel lists all the Major and Minor Prophets by name (except Ezekiel who was Ezra's contemporary - if this were a Christian Production I'm pretty sure he would have made the cut) in the opening chapters.

And, in closing, the Reader may be interested to know that the ever popular Doomsday originates here with Esdras.  

It comes from the same word Anno Domini comes from...

 



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