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Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol VIII:
Apocrypha of the New Testament.: Chapter 4

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Chapter 4.

And I Joseph begged the body of Jesus, and put it in a new tomb, where no one had been put.  And of the robber on the right the body was not found; but of him on the left, as the form of a dragon, so was his body.

And after I had begged the body of Jesus to bury, the Jews, carried away by hatred and rage, shut me up in prison, where evil-doers were kept under restraint.  And this happened to me on the evening of the Sabbath, whereby our nation transgressed the law.  And, behold, that same nation of ours endured fearful tribulations on the Sabbath.

And now, on the evening of the first of the week, at the fifth hour of the night, Jesus comes to me in the prison, along with the robber who had been crucified with Him on the right, whom He sent into paradise.  And there was a great light in the building.  And the house was hung up by the four corners, and the place was opened, and I came out.  Then I first recognised Jesus, and again the robber, bringing a letter to Jesus.  And as we were going into Galilee, there shone a great light, which the creation did not produce.  And there was also with the robber a great fragrance out of paradise.

And Jesus, having sat down in a certain place, thus read:  We, the cherubim and the six-winged, who have been ordered by Thy Godhead to watch the garden of paradise, make the following statement through the robber who was crucified along with Thee, by Thy arrangement:  When we saw the print of the nails of the robber crucified along with Thee, and the shining light of the letter of Thy Godhead, 2045 the fire indeed was extinguished, not being able to bear the splendour of the print; 2046 and we crouched down, being in great fear.  For we heard that the Maker of heaven and earth, and of the whole creation, had come down from on high to dwell in the lower parts of the earth, on account of Adam, the first created.  And when we beheld the undefiled cross shining like lightning from the robber, gleaming with sevenfold the light of the sun, trembling fell upon us.  We felt a violent shaking of the world below; 2047 and with a loud voice, the ministers of Hades said, along with us:  Holy, holy, holy is He who in the beginning was in the highest.  And the powers sent up a cry:  O Lord, Thou hast been made manifest in heaven and in earth, bringing joy to the world; and, a greater gift than this, Thou hast freed Thine own image from death by the invisible purpose of the ages.



Or, the shining light of the letter, the fire of the Godhead, we indeed were extinguished.


i.e., of the nails.


The text is here corrupt; but this seems to be the meaning.

Next: Chapter 5

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