1. …many of them will be false prophets, 3877 and will teach divers ways and doctrines of perdition: but these will become sons of perdition. 3878 3. And then God will come unto my faithful ones who hunger and thirst and are afflicted and purify their souls in this life; and he will judge the sons of lawlessness. 3879
4. And furthermore the Lord said: Let us go into the mountain: 3880 Let us pray. 5. And going with him, we, the twelve disciples, begged that he would show us one of our brethren, the righteous who are gone forth out of the world, in order that we might see of what manner of form they are, and having taken courage, might also encourage 3881 the men who hear us.
6. And as we prayed, suddenly there appeared two men standing before the Lord towards the East, on whom we were not able to look; 3882 7, for there came forth from their countenance a ray as of the sun, and their raiment was shining, such as eye of man 3883 never saw; for no mouth is able to express or heart to conceive the glory with which they were endued, and the beauty of their appearance. 8. And as we looked upon them, we were astounded; for their bodies were whiter than any snow and ruddier than any rose; 3884 9, and the red thereof was mingled with the white, and I am utterly unable to express their beauty; 10, for their hair was curly and bright and seemly both on their face and shoulders, as it were a wreath 3885 woven of spikenard and divers-coloured flowers, or like a rainbow in the sky, such was their seemliness.
11. Seeing therefore their beauty we became astounded at them, since they appeared suddenly. 12. And I approached the Lord and said: Who are these? 13. He saith to me: These are your brethren the righteous, whose forms ye desired to see. 14. And I said to him: And where are all the righteous ones and what is the æon in which they are and have this glory?
15. And the Lord showed me 3886 a very great country outside of this world, exceeding bright with light, and the air there lighted with the rays of the sun, and the earth itself blooming with unfading flowers and full of spices and plants, fair-flowering and incorruptible and bearing blessed fruit. 16. And so great was the perfume that it 3887 was borne thence even unto us. 17. And the dwellers in that place were clad in the raiment of shining angels and their raiment was like unto their country; and angels hovered about them there. 18. And the glory of the dwellers there was equal, and with one voice they sang praises alternately to the Lord God, rejoicing in that place. 19. The Lord saith to us: This is the place of your high-priests, 3888 the righteous men.
20. And over against that place I saw another, squalid, and it was the place of punishment; and those who were punished there and the punishing angels had their raiment dark 3889 like the air of the place.
21. And there were certain there hanging by the tongue: and these were the blasphemers of the way of righteousness; and under them lay fire, 3890 burning and punishing them.
23. And there were also others, women, hanged by their hair over that mire that bubbled up: and these were they who adorned themselves for adultery; and the men who mingled with them in the defilement 3892 of adultery, were hanging by the feet and their heads in that mire. And I said: I did not believe that I should come into this place.
24. And I saw the murderers and those who conspired with them, cast into a certain strait place, full of evil snakes, and smitten by those beasts, and thus turning to and fro in that punishment; and worms, 3893 as it were clouds of darkness, afflicted them. And the souls of the murdered stood and looked upon the punishment of those murderers and said: O God, thy judgment is just.
25. And near that place I saw another strait place into which the gore and the filth of those who were being punished ran down and became there as it were a lake: and there sat women having the gore up to their necks, and over against them sat many children who were born to them out of due time, crying; and there came forth from them sparks of fire and smote the women in the eyes: and these were the accursed who conceived and caused abortion.
26. And other men and women were burning up to the middle and were cast into a dark place and were beaten by evil spirits, and their inwards were eaten by restless worms: 3894 and these were they who persecuted the righteous and delivered them up.
27. And near those there were again women and men gnawing their own lips, and being punished and receiving a red-hot iron in their eyes: and these were they who blasphemed and slandered 3895 the way of righteousness.
28. And over against these again other men and women gnawing their tongues and having flaming fire in their mouths: and these were the false witnesses. 3896
29. And in a certain other place there were pebbles sharper than swords or any spit, red-hot, and women and men in tattered and filthy raiment rolled about on them in punishment: and these were the rich who trusted in their riches and had no pity for orphans and widows, and despised the commandment 3897 of God.
31. And other men and women were being hurled down from a great cliff and reached the bottom, and again were driven by those who were set over them to climb up upon the cliff, and thence were hurled down again, and had no rest from this punishment: and these were they who defiled 3898 their bodies acting as women; and the women who were with them were those who lay with one another as a man with a woman.
32. And alongside of that cliff there was a place full of much fire, and there stood men who with their own hands had made for themselves carven images instead of God. And alongside of these were other men and women, having rods and striking each other and never ceasing from such punishment.
33. And others again near them, women and men, burning and turning themselves and roasting: and these were they that leaving the way of God 3899 …
Purify their souls. Cf. 2 Peter i. 18. Sons of lawlessness. Cf. Pastor Herm. Vis. iii. 6.145:3880
Mountain. Cf. 2 Peter i. 18.145:3881 145:3882
Not able to look. Cf. 2 Cor. iii. 7 ff.145:3883
Eye of man, etc. Cf. 1 Cor. ii. 9.145:3884 145:3885 145:3886
Apparently all the disciples are supposed to have had the vision of heaven, but Peter alone that of hell. Unfading. Cf. 1 Peter i. 4.145:3887 145:3888 145:3889 145:3890 146:3891 146:3892 146:3893 146:3894 146:3895 146:3896 146:3897 146:3898 146:3899
Way of God. 2 Peter ii. 2. Pastor Herm. Vis. iii. 7; viii. 6; ix. 19, 22.