Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol VIII:Early Church Fathers Index Previous Next
Apocrypha of the New Testament.: Chapter 3
Chapter 3 (19).
Then Satan said to Hades: Make thyself ready to receive him whom I shall bring down to thee. Thereupon Hades thus replied to Satan: That voice was from nothing else than the cry of the Son of the Father most high, because the earth and all the places of the world below so trembled under it: wherefore I think that myself and all my dungeons are now lying open. But I adjure thee, Satan, head of all evils, 2007 by thy power and my own, bring him not to me, lest, while we wish to take him, we be taken captive by him. For if, at his voice only, all my power has been thus destroyed, what do you think he will do when he shall come in person?
To him Satan, the leader of death, thus replied: What art thou crying out about? Do not be afraid, my old most wicked friend, because I have stirred up the people of the Jews against him; I have told them to strike him with blows on the face, and I have brought upon him betrayal by one of his disciples; and he is a man in great fear of death, because from fear he said, My soul is sorrowful, even unto death; and I have brought him to this, that he has just been lifted up and hanged on the cross.
Then Hades said to him: If he be the same who, by the mere word of his command, made Lazarus fly away like an eagle from my bosom, when he had already been dead four days, he is not a man in humanity, but God in majesty. I entreat thee not to bring him to me. And Satan says to him: Make thyself ready nevertheless; be not afraid; because he is already hanging on the cross, I can do nothing else. Then Hades thus replied to Satan: If, then, thou canst do nothing else, behold, thy destruction is at hand. I, in short, shall remain cast down and dishonoured; thou, however, wilt be tortured under my power.
Or, of all the wicked.
Next: Chapter 4
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