므나세의기도(Prayer of Manasseh)
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 He answered me and said, "Measure carefully in your mind, and when you see that a certain part of the predicted signs are past,
 then you will know that it is the very time when the Most High is about to visit the world which he has made.
 So when there shall appear in the world earthquakes, tumult of peoples, intrigues of nations, wavering of leaders, confusion of princes,
 then you will know that it was of these that the Most High spoke from the days that were of old, from the beginning.
 For just as with everything that has occurred in the world, the beginning is evident, and the end manifest;
 so also are the times of the Most High: the beginnings are manifest in wonders and mighty works, and the end in requital and in signs.
 And it shall be that every one who will be saved and will be able to escape on account of his works, or on account of the faith by which he has believed,
 will survive the dangers that have been predicted, and will see my salvation in my land and within my borders, which I have sanctified for myself from the beginning.
 Then those who have now abused my ways shall be amazed, and those who have rejected them with contempt shall dwell in torments.
 For as many as did not acknowledge me in their lifetime, although they received my benefits,
 and as many as scorned my law while they still had freedom, and did not understand but despised it while an opportunity of repentance was still open to them,
 these must in torment acknowledge it after death.
 Therefore, do not continue to be curious as to how the ungodly will be punished; but inquire how the righteous will be saved, those to whom the age belongs and for whose sake the age was made."
 I answered and said,
 "I said before, and I say now, and will say it again: there are more who perish than those who will be saved,
 as a wave is greater than a drop of water."
 He answered me and said, "As is the field, so is the seed; and as are the flowers, so are the colors; and as is the work, so is the product; and as is the farmer, so is the threshing floor.
 For there was a time in this age when I was preparing for those who now exist, before the world was made for them to dwell in, and no one opposed me then, for no one existed;
 but now those who have been created in this world which is supplied both with an unfailing table and an inexhaustible pasture, have become corrupt in their ways.
 So I considered my world, and behold, it was lost, and my earth, and behold, it was in peril because of the devices of those who had come into it.
 And I saw and spared some with great difficulty, and saved for myself one grape out of a cluster, and one plant out of a great forest.
 So let the multitude perish which has been born in vain, but let my grape and my plant be saved, because with much labor I have perfected them.
 But if you will let seven days more pass -- do not fast during them, however;
 but go into a field of flowers where no house has been built, and eat only of the flowers of the field, and taste no meat and drink no wine, but eat only flowers,
 and pray to the Most High continually -- then I will come and talk with you."
 So I went, as he directed me, into the field which is called Ardat; and there I sat among the flowers and ate of the plants of the field, and the nourishment they afforded satisfied me.
 And after seven days, as I lay on the grass, my heart was troubled again as it was before.
 And my mouth was opened, and I began to speak before the Most High, and said,
 "O Lord, thou didst show thyself among us, to our fathers in the wilderness when they came out from Egypt and when they came into the untrodden and unfruitful wilderness;
 and thou didst say, `Hear me, O Israel, and give heed to my words, O descendants of Jacob.
 For behold, I sow my law in you, and it shall bring forth fruit in you and you shall be glorified through it for ever.'
 But though our fathers received the law, they did not keep it, and did not observe the statutes; yet the fruit of the law did not perish -- for it could not, because it was thine.
 Yet those who received it perished, because they did not keep what had been sown in them.
 And behold, it is the rule that, when the ground has received seed, or the sea a ship, or any dish food or drink, and when it happens that what was sown or what was launched or what was put in is destroyed,
 they are destroyed, but the things that held them remain; yet with us it has not been so.
 For we who have received the law and sinned will perish, as well as our heart which received it;
 the law, however, does not perish but remains in its glory."
 When I said these things in my heart, I lifted up my eyes and saw a woman on my right, and behold, she was mourning and weeping with a loud voice, and was deeply grieved at heart, and her clothes were rent, and there were ashes on her head.
 Then I dismissed the thoughts with which I had been engaged, and turned to her
 and said to her, "Why are you weeping, and why are you grieved at heart?"
 And she said to me, "Let me alone, my lord, that I may weep for myself and continue to mourn, for I am greatly embittered in spirit and deeply afflicted."
 And I said to her, "What has happened to you? Tell me."
 And she said to me, "Your servant was barren and had no child, though I lived with my husband thirty years.
 And every hour and every day during those thirty years I besought the Most High, night and day.
 And after thirty years God heard your handmaid, and looked upon my low estate, and considered my distress, and gave me a son. And I rejoiced greatly over him, I and my husband and all my neighbors; and we gave great glory to the Mighty One.
 And I brought him up with much care.
 So when he grew up and I came to take a wife for him, I set a day for the marriage feast.
 "But it happened that when my son entered his wedding chamber, he fell down and died.
 Then we all put out the lamps, and all my neighbors attempted to console me; and I remained quiet until evening of the second day.
 But when they all had stopped consoling me, that I might be quiet, I got up in the night and fled, and came to this field, as you see.
 And now I intend not to return to the city, but to stay here, and I will neither eat nor drink, but without ceasing mourn and fast until I die."
 Then I broke off the reflections with which I was still engaged, and answered her in anger and said,
 "You most foolish of women, do you not see our mourning, and what has happened to us?
 For Zion, the mother of us all, is in deep grief and great affliction.
 It is most appropriate to mourn now, because we are all mourning, and to be sorrowful, because we are all sorrowing; you are sorrowing for one son, but we, the whole world, for our mother.
 Now ask the earth, and she will tell you that it is she who ought to mourn over so many who have come into being upon her.
 And from the beginning all have been born of her, and others will come; and behold, almost all go to perdition, and a multitude of them are destined for destruction.
 Who then ought to mourn the more, she who lost so great a multitude, or you who are grieving for one?
 But if you say to me, `My lamentation is not like the earth's, for I have lost the fruit of my womb, which I brought forth in pain and bore in sorrow;
 but it is with the earth according to the way of the earth -- the multitude that is now in it goes as it came';
 then I say to you, `As you brought forth in sorrow, so the earth also has from the beginning given her fruit, that is, man, to him who made her.'
 Now, therefore, keep your sorrow to yourself, and bear bravely the troubles that have come upon you.
 For if you acknowledge the decree of God to be just, you will receive your son back in due time, and will be praised among women.
 Therefore go into the city to your husband."
 She said to me, "I will not do so; I will not go into the city, but I will die here."
 So I spoke again to her, and said,
 "Do not say that, but let yourself be persuaded because of the troubles of Zion, and be consoled because of the sorrow of Jerusalem.
 For you see that our sanctuary has been laid waste, our altar thrown down, our temple destroyed;
 our harp has been laid low, our song has been silenced, and our rejoicing has been ended; the light of our lampstand has been put out, the ark of our covenant has been plundered, our holy things have been polluted, and the name by which we are called has been profaned; our free men have suffered abuse, our priests have been burned to death, our Levites have gone into captivity, our virgins have been defiled, and our wives have been ravished; our righteous men have been carried off, our little ones have been cast out, our young men have been enslaved and our strong men made powerless.
 And, what is more than all, the seal of Zion -- for she has now lost the seal of her glory, and has been given over into the hands of those that hate us.
 Therefore shake off your great sadness and lay aside your many sorrows, so that the Mighty One may be merciful to you again, and the Most High may give you rest, a relief from your troubles."
 While I was talking to her, behold, her face suddenly shone exceedingly, and her countenance flashed like lightning, so that I was too frightened to approach her, and my heart was terrified. While I was wondering what this meant,
 behold, she suddenly uttered a loud and fearful cry, so that the earth shook at the sound.
 And I looked, and behold, the woman was no longer visible to me, but there was an established city, and a place of huge foundations showed itself. Then I was afraid, and cried with a loud voice and said,
 "Where is the angel Uriel, who came to me at first? For it was he who brought me into this overpowering bewilderment; my end has become corruption, and my prayer a reproach."
 As I was speaking these words, behold, the angel who had come to me at first came to me, and he looked upon me;
 and behold, I lay there like a corpse and I was deprived of my understanding. Then he grasped my right hand and strengthened me and set me on my feet, and said to me,
 "What is the matter with you? And why are you troubled? And why are your understanding and the thoughts of your mind troubled?"
 I said, "Because you have forsaken me! I did as you directed, and went out into the field, and behold, I saw, and still see, what I am unable to explain."
 He said to me, "Stand up like a man, and I will instruct you."
 I said, "Speak, my lord; only do not forsake me, lest I die before my time.
 For I have seen what I did not know, and I have heard what I do not understand.
 Or is my mind deceived, and my soul dreaming?
 Now therefore I entreat you to give your servant an explanation of this bewildering vision."
 He answered me and said, "Listen to me and I will inform you, and tell you about the things which you fear, for the Most High has revealed many secrets to you.
 For he has seen your righteous conduct, that you have sorrowed continually for your people, and mourned greatly over Zion.
 This therefore is the meaning of the vision.
 The woman who appeared to you a little while ago, whom you saw mourning and began to console --
 but you do not now see the form of a woman, but an established city has appeared to you --
 and as for her telling you about the misfortune of her son, this is the interpretation:
 This woman whom you saw, whom you now behold as an established city, is Zion.
 And as for her telling you that she was barren for thirty years, it is because there were three thousand years in the world before any offering was offered in it.
 And after three thousand years Solomon built the city, and offered offerings; then it was that the barren woman bore a son.
 And as for her telling you that she brought him up with much care, that was the period of residence in Jerusalem.
 And as for her saying to you , `When my son entered his wedding chamber he died,' and that misfortune had overtaken her, that was the destruction which befell Jerusalem.
 And behold, you saw her likeness, how she mourned for her son, and you began to console her for what had happened.
 For now the Most High, seeing that you are sincerely grieved and profoundly distressed for her, has shown you the brilliance of her glory, and the loveliness of her beauty.
 Therefore I told you to remain in the field where no house had been built,
 for I knew that the Most High would reveal these things to you.
 Therefore I told you to go into the field where there was no foundation of any building,
 for no work of man's building could endure in a place where the city of the Most High was to be revealed.
 "Therefore do not be afraid, and do not let your heart be terrified; but go in and see the splendor and vastness of the building, as far as it is possible for your eyes to see it,
 and afterward you will hear as much as your ears can hear.
 For you are more blessed than many, and you have been called before the Most High, as but few have been.
 But tomorrow night you shall remain here,
 and the Most High will show you in those dream visions what the Most High will do to those who dwell on earth in the last days." So I slept that night and the following one, as he had commanded me.
 On the second night I had a dream, and behold, there came up from the sea an eagle that had twelve feathered wings and three heads.
 And I looked, and behold, he spread his wings over all the earth, and all the winds of heaven blew upon him, and the clouds were gathered about him.
 And I looked, and out of his wings there grew opposing wings; but they became little, puny wings.
 But his heads were at rest; the middle head was larger than the other heads, but it also was at rest with them.
 And I looked, and behold, the eagle flew with his wings, to reign over the earth and over those who dwell in it.
 And I saw how all things under heaven were subjected to him, and no one spoke against him, not even one creature that was on the earth.
 And I looked, and behold, the eagle rose upon his talons, and uttered a cry to his wings, saying,
 "Do not all watch at the same time; let each sleep in his own place, and watch in his turn;
 but let the heads be reserved for the last."
 And I looked, and behold, the voice did not come from his heads, but from the midst of his body.
 And I counted his opposing wings, and behold, there were eight of them.
 And I looked, and behold, on the right side one wing arose, and it reigned over all the earth.
 And while it was reigning it came to its end and disappeared, so that its place was not seen. Then the next wing arose and reigned, and it continued to reign a long time.
 And while it was reigning its end came also, so that it disappeared like the first.
 And behold, a voice sounded, saying to it.
 "Hear me, you who have ruled the earth all this time; I announce this to you before you disappear.
 After you no one shall rule as long as you, or even half as long."
 Then the third wing raised itself up, and held the rule like the former ones, and it also disappeared.
 And so it went with all the wings; they wielded power one after another and then were never seen again.
 And I looked, and behold, in due course the wings that followed also rose up on the right side, in order to rule. There were some of them that ruled, yet disappeared suddenly;
 and others of them rose up, but did not hold the rule.
 And after this I looked, and behold, the twelve wings and the two little wings disappeared;
 and nothing remained on the eagle's body except the three heads that were at rest and six little wings.
 And I looked, and behold, two little wings separated from the six and remained under the head that was on the right side; but four remained in their place.
 And I looked, and behold, these little wings planned to set themselves up and hold the rule.
 And I looked, and behold, one was set up, but suddenly disappeared;
 a second also, and this disappeared more quickly than the first.
 And I looked, and behold, the two that remained were planning between themselves to reign together;
 and while they were planning, behold, one of the heads that were at rest (the one which was in the middle) awoke; for it was greater than the other two heads.
 And I saw how it allied the two heads with itself,
 and behold, the head turned with those that were with it, and it devoured the two little wings which were planning to reign.
 Moreover this head gained control of the whole earth, and with much oppression dominated its inhabitants; and it had greater power over the world than all the wings that had gone before.
 And after this I looked, and behold, the middle head also suddenly disappeared, just as the wings had done.
 But the two heads remained, which also ruled over the earth and its inhabitants.
 And I looked, and behold, the head on the right side devoured the one on the left.
 Then I heard a voice saying to me, "Look before you and consider what you see."
 And I looked, and behold, a creature like a lion was aroused out of the forest, roaring; and I heard how he uttered a man's voice to the eagle, and spoke, saying,
 "Listen and I will speak to you. The Most High says to you,
 `Are you not the one that remains of the four beasts which I had made to reign in my world, so that the end of my times might come through them?
 You, the fourth that has come, have conquered all the beasts that have gone before; and you have held sway over the world with much terror, and over all the earth with grievous oppression; and for so long you have dwelt on the earth with deceit.
 And you have judged the earth, but not with truth;
 for you have afflicted the meek and injured the peaceable; you have hated those who tell the truth, and have loved liars; you have destroyed the dwellings of those who brought forth fruit, and have laid low the walls of those who did you no harm.
 And so your insolence has come up before the Most High, and your pride to the Mighty One.
 And the Most High has looked upon his times, and behold, they are ended, and his ages are completed!
 Therefore you will surely disappear, you eagle, and your terrifying wings, and your most evil little wings, and your malicious heads, and your most evil talons, and your whole worthless body,
 so that the whole earth, freed from your violence, may be refreshed and relieved, and may hope for the judgment and mercy of him who made it.'"
 While the lion was saying these words to the eagle, I looked,
 and behold, the remaining head disappeared. And the two wings that had gone over to it arose and set themselves up to reign, and their reign was brief and full of tumult.
 And I looked, and behold, they also disappeared, and the whole body of the eagle was burned, and the earth was exceedingly terrified. Then I awoke in great perplexity of mind and great fear, and I said to my spirit,
 "Behold, you have brought this upon me, because you search out the ways of the Most High.
 Behold, I am still weary in mind and very weak in my spirit, and not even a little strength is left in me, because of the great fear with which I have been terrified this night.
 Therefore I will now beseech the Most High that he may strengthen me to the end."
 And I said, "O sovereign Lord, if I have found favor in thy sight, and if I have been accounted righteous before thee beyond many others, and if my prayer has indeed come up before thy face,
 strengthen me and show me, thy servant, the interpretation and meaning of this terrifying vision, that thou mayest fully comfort my soul.
 For thou hast judged me worthy to be shown the end of the times and the last events of the times."
 He said to me, "This is the interpretation of this vision which you have seen:
 The eagle which you saw coming up from the sea is the fourth kingdom which appeared in a vision to your brother Daniel.
 But it was not explained to him as I now explain or have explained it to you.
 Behold, the days are coming when a kingdom shall arise on earth, and it shall be more terrifying than all the kingdoms that have been before it.
 And twelve kings shall reign in it, one after another.
 But the second that is to reign shall hold sway for a longer time than any other of the twelve.
 This is the interpretation of the twelve wings which you saw.
 As for your hearing a voice that spoke, coming not from the eagle's heads but from the midst of his body, this is the interpretation:
 In the midst of the time of that kingdom great struggles shall arise, and it shall be in danger of falling; nevertheless it shall not fall then, but shall regain its former power.
 As for your seeing eight little wings clinging to his wings, this is the interpretation:
 Eight kings shall arise in it, whose times shall be short and their years swift;
 and two of them shall perish when the middle of its time draws near; and four shall be kept for the time when its end approaches; but two shall be kept until the end.
 As for your seeing three heads at rest, this is the interpretation:
 In its last days the Most High will raise up three kings, and they shall renew many things in it, and shall rule the earth
 and its inhabitants more oppressively than all who were before them; therefore they are called the heads of the eagle.
 For it is they who shall sum up his wickedness and perform his last actions.
 As for your seeing that the large head disappeared, one of the kings shall die in his bed, but in agonies.
 But as for the two who remained, the sword shall devour them.
 For the sword of one shall devour him who was with him; but he also shall fall by the sword in the last days.
 As for your seeing two little wings passing over to the head which was on the right side,
 this is the interpretation: It is these whom the Most High has kept for the eagle's end; this was the reign which was brief and full of tumult, as you have seen.
 "And as for the lion whom you saw rousing up out of the forest and roaring and speaking to the eagle and reproving him for his unrighteousness, and as for all his words that you have heard,
 this is the Messiah whom the Most High has kept until the end of days, who will arise from the posterity of David, and will come and speak to them; he will denounce them for their ungodliness and for their wickedness, and will cast up before them their contemptuous dealings.
 For first he will set them living before his judgment seat, and when he has reproved them, then he will destroy them.
 But he will deliver in mercy the remnant of my people, those who have been saved throughout my borders, and he will make them joyful until the end comes, the day of judgment, of which I spoke to you at the beginning.
 This is the dream that you saw, and this is its interpretation.
 And you alone were worthy to learn this secret of the Most High.
 Therefore write all these things that you have seen in a book, and put it in a hidden place;
 and you shall teach them to the wise among your people, whose hearts you know are able to comprehend and keep these secrets.
 But wait here seven days more, so that you may be shown whatever it pleases the Most High to show you." Then he left me.
 When all the people heard that the seven days were past and I had not returned to the city, they all gathered together, from the least to the greatest, and came to me and spoke to me, saying,
 "How have we offended you, and what harm have we done you, that you have forsaken us and sit in this place?
 For of all the prophets you alone are left to us, like a cluster of grapes from the vintage, and like a lamp in a dark place, and like a haven for a ship saved from a storm.
 Are not the evils which have befallen us sufficient?
 Therefore if you forsake us, how much better it would have been for us if we also had been consumed in the burning of Zion!
 For we are no better than those who died there." And they wept with a loud voice. Then I answered them and said,
 "Take courage, O Israel; and do not be sorrowful, O house of Jacob;
 for the Most High has you in remembrance, and the Mighty One has not forgotten you in your struggle.
 As for me, I have neither forsaken you nor withdrawn from you; but I have come to this place to pray on account of the desolation of Zion, and to seek mercy on account of the humiliation of our sanctuary.
 Now go, every one of you to his house, and after these days I will come to you."
 So the people went into the city, as I told them to do.
 But I sat in the field seven days, as the angel had commanded me; and I ate only of the flowers of the field, and my food was of plants during those days.
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므나세의기도(Prayer of Manasseh)