Updated July 8, 2012
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APOCRYPHA CONFIRMATIONS |
Confirmation of the Regathering from the Apocrypha
Apocrypha (from the Greek word ἀπόκρυφα, meaning "those having been hidden away" are texts of uncertain authenticity or writings where the authorship is questioned. In Judeo-Christian theology the term apocrypha refers to any collection of scriptural texts that falls outside the canon. Given that different denominations have different ideas about what constitutes canonical scripture, there are several different versions of the apocrypha. During sixteenth-century controversies over the biblical canon the word "apocrypha" acquired a negative connotation, and it has become a synonym for "spurious" or "false".
Although traditional Rabbinical Judaism insists on the exclusive canonization of the current 24 books in the Tanakh, it also claims to have an Oral Law handed down from Moses. The Sadducees, - unlike the Pharisees but like the Samaritans - seem to have maintained an earlier and smaller number of texts as canonical, preferring to hold to only what was written in the Law of Moses (making most of the presently accepted canon, both Jewish and Christian, apocryphal in their eyes). Certain circles in Judaism, such as the Essenes in Judea and the Therapeutae in Egypt, were said to have a secret literature (see Dead Sea scrolls.
Source: Wikipedia - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apocrypha
The main body of the book appears to be written for consolation in a period of great distress (most likely Titus' destruction of the Second Temple in AD 70) according to the modern theory. The author seeks answers, similar to Job's quest for understanding the meaning of suffering but the author doesn't like or desire only the answer that was given to Job.
The book is considered one of the gems of Jewish apocalyptic literature.
Extract fro 2 Esdras 13:8-47
8 "After this I looked and saw that all who had gathered together against him, to wage war with him, were filled with fear, and yet they dared to fight
10 but I saw only how he sent forth from his mouth something like a stream of fire, and from his lips a flaming breath, and from his tongue he shot forth a storm of sparks. 11 ... (which) fell on the onrushing multitude that was prepared to fight, and burned up all of them, so that suddenly nothing was seen of the innumerable multitude but only the dust of ashes and the smell of smoke ... 12 After this I saw the same man come down from the mountain and call to himself another multitude that was peaceable.
25 This is the interpretation of the vision:
26 ... this is he whom the Most High has been keeping for many ages, who will himself deliver his creation; and he will direct those who are left. 27And as for your seeing wind and fire and a storm coming out of his mouth 28 ... destroying the onrushing multitude that came to conquer him, this is the interpretation:
29 The days are
coming when the Most High will deliver those who are
on the earth. 30And
bewilderment of mind shall come over those who
inhabit the earth. 31They
shall plan to make war against one another ...
35 But he shall stand
on the top of Mount Zion. 36And
Zion shall come and be made manifest to all people,
prepared and built, as you saw the mountain carved
out without hands.
46 Then they lived there until the last times; and now, when they are about to come again, 47the Most High will stop the channels of the river (Euphrates) again, so that they may be able to cross over. Therefore you saw the multitude gathered together in peace. "
Our Mandate - Ezekiel 37:15-28
" The word of HaShem came to me: "Son of man, take a stick of wood and write on it, 'Belonging to Judah and the Israelites associated with him.' Then take another stick of wood, and write on it, 'Ephraim's stick, belonging to Joseph and all the house of Israel associated with him.' Join them together into one stick so that they will become one in your hand.
"When your countrymen ask you, 'Won't you tell us what you mean by this?' say to them, 'This is what the Sovereign HaShem says: 'I am going to take the stick of Joseph - which is in Ephraim's hand - and of the Israelite tribes associated with him, and join it to Judah's stick, making them a single stick of wood, and they will become one in My Hand.' Hold before their eyes the sticks you have written on and say to them, 'This is what the Sovereign HaShem says: 'I will take the Israelites out of the nations where they have gone. I will gather them from all around and bring them back into their own land. I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel. There will be one king over all of them and they will never again be two nations or be divided into two kingdoms. They will no longer defile themselves with their idols and vile images or with any of their offenses, for I will save them from all their sinful backsliding, and I will cleanse them. They will be My People, and I will be their G-d. My servant David will be king over them, and they will all have one Shepherd. They will follow My Laws and be careful to keep My Decrees. They will live in the land I gave to My servant Jacob, the land where your fathers lived. They and their children and their children's children will live there forever, and David My servant will be their prince forever. I will make a covenant of peace with them; it will be an everlasting covenant. I will establish them and increase their numbers, and I will put My Sanctuary among them forever. My dwelling place will be with them; I will be their G-d, and they will be My People. Then the nations will know that I, HaShem, make Israel holy, when My Sanctuary is among them forever.' "
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