2 Esdras Chapter 3 (1611 Bible)
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In the thirtieth yeere after the ruine of the citie, I was in Babylon, and lay troubled vpon my bed, and my thoughts came vp ouer my heart.
For I saw the desolation of Sion, and the wealth of them that dwelt at Babylon.
And my spirit was sore moued, so that I began to speake words full of feare to the most High, and said,
O Lord, who bearest rule, thou spakest at the beginning, when thou didst plant the earth (and that thy selfe alone) and commandedst the people,
And gauest a body vnto Adam without soule, which was the workemanship of thine hands, & didst breathe into him the breath of life, and he was made liuing before thee.
And thou leddest him into paradise, which thy right hand had planted, before euer the earth came forward.
And vnto him thou gauest commandement to loue thy way, which he transgressed, and immediatly thou appointedst death in him, and in his generations, of whom came nations, tribes, people, and kinreds out of number.
And euery people walked after their owne will, and did wonderfull things before thee, and despised thy commandements.
And againe in processe of time thou broughtest the flood vpon those that dwelt in the world, and destroyedst them.
And it came to passe in euery of them, that as death was to Adam, so was the flood to these.
Neuerthelesse one of them thou leftest, namely Noah with his household, of whom came all righteous men.
And it happened, that when they that dwelt vpō the earth began to multiply, and had gotten them many children, and were a great people, they beganne againe to be more vngodly then the first.
Now when they liued so wickedly before thee, thou diddest choose thee a man from among them, whose name was Abraham.
Him thou louedst, and vnto him onely thou shewedst thy will:
And madest an euerlasting couenant with him, promising him that thou wouldest neuer forsake his seede.
And vnto him, thou gauest Isahac, and vnto Isahac also thou gauest Iacob and Esau. As for Iacob thou didst choose him to thee, and put by Esau: and so Iacob became a great multitude.
And it came to passe, that when thou leddest his seede out of Egypt, thou broughtest them vp to the mount Sina.
And bowing the heauens, thou didest set fast the earth, mouedst the whole world, and madest the depth to tremble, and troubledst the men of that age.
And thy glory went through foure gates, of fire, and of earthquake, and of wind, and of cold, that thou mightest giue the law vnto the seed of Iacob, and diligence vnto the generation of Israel.
And yet tookest thou not away from them a wicked heart, that thy law might bring forth fruite in them.
For the first Adam bearing a wicked heart transgressed, and was ouercome; and so be all they that are borne of him.
Thus infirmity was made permanent; and the law (also) in the heart of the people with the malignity of the roote, so that the good departed away, and the euill abode still.
So the times passed away, and the yeeres were brought to an end: then diddest thou raise thee vp a seruant, called Dauid,
Whom thou commandedst to build a citie vnto thy name, and to offer incense and oblations vnto thee therein.
When this was done many yeeres, then they that inhabited the citie forsooke thee,
And in all things did euen as Adam, and all his generations had done, for they also had a wicked heart.
And so thou gauest the citie ouer into the hands of thine enemies.
Are their deeds then any better that inhabite Babylon, that they should therefore haue the dominion ouer Sion?
For when I came thither, and had seene impieties without number, then my soule saw many euill doers in this thirtieth yeere, so that my heart failed me.
For I haue seene how thou sufferest them sinning, and hast spared wicked doers: and hast destroyed thy people, and hast preserued thine enemies, and hast not signified it.
I doe not remember how this way may be left: Are they then of Babylon better then they of Sion?
Or is there any other people that knoweth thee besides Israel? or what generation hath so beleeued thy Couenants as Iacob?
And yet their reward appeareth not, and their labour hath no fruite: for I haue gone here and there through the heathen, and I see that they flowe in wealth, and think not vpon thy commandements.
Weigh thou therfore our wickednesse now in the ballance, and theirs also that dwell in the world: and so shall thy Name no where be found, but in Israel.
Or when was it that they which dwell vpon the earth, haue not sinned in thy sight? or what people hath so kept thy commandements?
Thou shalt find that Israel by name hath kept thy precepts: but not the heathen.
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