Nicene and Ante-Nicene Fathers, Ser. II, Vol. XIII:Early Church Fathers Index Previous Next
Selections from the Hymns and Homilies of Ephraim the Syrian and from the Demonstrations of Aphrahat the Persian Sage.: Hymn LXVI.
1. Hold your peace, O mortals (said Death), a little while: and be like me who am so silent, in the midst of Sheol.—2. R., To Thee be glory, Watcher, that didst come down, after them that slept: and utter the voice from the Tree, and waken them!—3. Ye are grieving, yea, weeping, for him that has gone: as though he came to grind for me, the mill in Sheol.—4. Great is the peace I give, unto the wearied: I wax not weary as you, nor weary them.—5. I hear all manner of curses, from thankless men: the sons of Adam are like Adam, who was thankless to his Lord.—6. Contrary one to the other are your voices, and your doings: with your voices ye weep and in your doings, ye fight daily.—7. I heard weeping and I thought to myself, that none labours: I saw toiling and I thought to myself, that no man dies.—8. The struggles of man made me think, that he is not mortal: his great weeping made me think, that to-morrow he is not.—9. Hear and let me be your counsellor, if ye be willing: for these two, these burdens, are very bitter.—10. Cease a little while from this toil, and from this weeping: toil ye and weep as mortals, who to-morrow vanish.—11. Ye are frantic with weeping, for your departed: and ye struggle in toiling, for your possessions.—12. It is well with the infants that die, and blessed are they: for they are freed from the misery, whereunto ye are cast.—13. Suffer me to go to Sheol, and there to say: “Happy are ye silent dead, how tranquil are ye!”—14. Hear the conclusion of our own words, If there be a resurrection: weep not ye, neither labour as though strangers.—15. Ye straggle as one who was to live, here forever: and ye weep as one who never, should rise again.—16. Hear my words, if there be with you p. 218 place for hearing: and prepare you provision that when I call ye may answer.—17. For I hearken even I, to Him that calls me: and will restore your bodies, with your treasures.—18. Let there be peace between us, until that day: and when ye come forth I will cry and say, “Depart in peace!”—19. Come ye, you and I even now, shall give glory: to Him that brings to death and to life, that He may give aid.—20. Praise from us all be to thee, O Lord, the living Sacrifice! Who by the sacrifice of Thy Body hast given life to quick and dead.—21. Praise to Him Who clothed Himself in our body, and died and rose again: He died in us and we live in Him, blessed be He Who sent Him!
Next: Hymn LXVII.
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