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|The TRUE Christmas-Story… Th Birth of Jesus Part 2|
The TRUE Christmas-Story… Th Birth of Jesus Part 2
Jesus Christ reveals thru Jacob Lorber
“The Childhood of Jesus” – Chapters 20 – 34
Chapter 20. – Cornelius’ questions about the Messiah
20,1. But Joseph, who was very happy about this, spoke to the captain: “Upholder of the great Emperor’s power, what can I, a poor man, offer you for your great friendship? – What can I serve you in this humid cave?
20,2. How can I treat you in accordance with your high position? – Look, here in my cart are all my belongings, partly brought from Nazareth, but partly a present from the local shepherds!
20,3. If you’re able to take some of it, may each bite fed to your mouth be a thousand times blessed!”
20,4. But Cornelius said: “Good fellow, worry not about me; see, here is my landlady, who will take care of the kitchen and we shall all have enough for only one small coin adorned by the emperor’s head!”
20,5. And the captain gave a gold coin to the midwife and told her to arrange for a good lunch and dinner and for better housing, as soon as the woman in childbed would be able to move.
20,6. But then Joseph said to Cornelius: “Oh splendid friend! Please, do not go to any trouble or expense for us; because for the few days we shall spend here, we are – praise the Lord, God of Israel! – Well taken care of!”
20,7. The captain then said: “Good is good, but better is better! Therefore just let it happen and let me make a happy sacrifice to God as well; see, I honour the gods of all peoples!
20,8. I also want to honour your God, because ever since I saw His temple at Jerusalem I am pleased by Him. He must be a God of great wisdom, that you have learned such great skill from him?”
20,9. But Joseph spoke: “Oh friend! If it would be possible for me to convince you of the one and only nature of our God, how much I would like to do it for your eternal well being!
20,10. But I am weak and ignorant and am not able to do so. But just look into some of our books and read them, you know our language well, and you will find things which will amaze you!”
20,11. And Cornelius said: “Good fellow, I have already done what you have now kindly advised me to do, and I have found truly astonishing things therein!
20,12. Among other things I discovered a prediction, in which the Jews are promised a new eternal king. Tell me, do you know, after interpreting such prediction, when this king will come – and from where?”
20,13. After some moments of embarrassment, Joseph said: “He will come from the heavens as the son of the everlasting God! And his Kingdom will not be of this world, but of the world of the spirit and truth!”
20,14. And Cornelius spoke: “Well, I understand you, but I have also read that this king shall be born to a virgin in a stable, near this town! – How can this be understood?”
20,15. But Joseph spoke: “Oh good man, you have a keen perception! – I cannot tell you anything else than this: Go and see the maid with the new born Child; there you will find what you want to find.”
20,16. And Cornelius went and looked with sharp eyes at the virgin and the Infant, in order to discover, from her and the Child, the future king of the Jews.
20,17. He also asked Mary how she had become pregnant at such an early age.
20,18. And Mary replied: “Honest man, as truly as God exists have I never known a man!
20,19. But it so happened nine months ago, that a messenger of the Lord came to me and taught me in a few words that I would become pregnant from the spirit of God.
20,20. And it happened so: I became pregnant without ever having known a man; and look, before you is the fruit of the Divine promise! As God is my witness, this has happened so!” –
20,21. Now Cornelius turned to both of the sisters and said: “What do you say to this story? Is this a fine deception of this old man, a good pretext for blind, superstitious people to escape legal punishment under such circumstances?
20,22. For I know that Jews have set the death penalty for such cases! – But should there be anything more serious to it – which would be worse than in the first case, because then the emperor’s law has to be applied severely, to make short work of any agitator?! Oh speak truth, so that I know what to think of this extraordinary family!”
20,23. But Salome spoke: ” Listen to me, oh Cornelius, I plead to you by all your great imperial authority! There will be no need for you to take any serious steps with regard to this poor, yet infinitely rich, family!
20,24. You can believe me, for I stand for the truth with my life: all the powers of the heavens are at the disposal of this family, like your arm to you, of this I am truly convinced.”
20,25. Now Cornelius was taken aback even more and asked Salome: “Even the powers of Rome’s holy Gods, Rome’s heroes, weapons and invincible power? – Oh Salome! what are you talking about?!”
20,26. But Salome said: “As you have said, so it is! – This is my conviction; in case you may not believe it, you might go outside and look at the sun! It is already shining for four hours today, and look, it is standing still in the east and does not dare to move on!”
20,27. And Cornelius went outside, looked at the sun, came back and said in astonishment: “Indeed, you are right, if this is in connection with this family, then even the god Apollo obeys them!
20,28. Zeus must be here as well, the mightiest of all gods and the time of Deucalion and of Pyrrha seems to come again; but if that is the case, then I have to report such an incident to Rome immediately!”
20,29. When these words were spoken, two mighty angels appeared; their faces were radiant like the sun and their clothes like a flash of lightning. And they spoke: “Cornelius! – Be silent about all you have seen, even to yourself – otherwise you and Rome will perish this day!”
20,30. Cornelius was then overcome by great fear. The two angels disappeared; but he went to Joseph and spoke: “Oh man! – Here is infinitely more than a future king of the Jews! Here is the One, whom all heaven and hell obeys! Therefore let me go from here; for I am not worthy of being so close to the presence to God!”
Chapter 21. – The free will of man – Advice to Cornelius
21,1. And Joseph, himself quite astonished by Cornelius’ remarks, said to him: “This wonder is so great that I do not even know how to tell you!
21,2. Bit you can believe me when I tell you that great and mighty things are behind it; for all the powers of God’s eternal heaven are not be set in motion for insignificant matters!
21,3. With regard to this wonder, no man is inhibited in his free will and can do whatever he wants; for that is what I have understood from the commandments given to you by the two angels of the Lord!
21,4. For behold, the Lord through his omnipotence could bind our will in this instance, just as He binds the will of the animals, and we would then have to act according to His will!
21,5. He does not do that, however. He only gives us free commandment from which we can learn that we can want and act on our own, that is His holy will.
21,6. So you too are not bound in the slightest, not even with one fibre of your body, and can therefore do whatever you want! If you wish to be my guest today, then stay; however, if you do not wish or dare to do this, you are likewise completely free to decide.
21,7. If you would ask for my advice, I would definitely give it and say to you: O friend, stay! – For you will not be in better hands anywhere else in the whole world than here under the visible protection of all the heavenly powers!”
21,8. And Cornelius said: “Yes, just man before the Gods and before your God, and before all men, your advice is good, and I will follow it and stay with you until tomorrow!
21,9. I will now leave with my landlady for a short while, to make arrangements so that all of you can be provided – despite this cave – with better shelter.”
21,10. And Joseph said: “Good man, do as you wish! The Lord God will reward you some day!”
21,11. Hereupon the captain went to town with the midwife and first had it announced that the day was an official holiday, then took thirty warriors, gave them bedding, tents and firewood and told them to carry it all to the cave.
21,12. The midwife took an appropriate amount of food and drink with her and had some more brought after her.
21,13. On arrival at the cave, the captain immediately had three tents set up: a spacious one for Mary, one for himself, Joseph and his sons and one for the midwife and her sister.
21,14. And in Mary’s tent he had a new and rather soft bed set up and provided the tent with other necessary facilities. He also suitably equipped the other tents, got his men to quickly build a stove, laid some wood on it himself and made a fire to warm the cave, which was quite cold at this time of year.
Chapter 22. – The new eternal spiritual sun
22,1. Thus Cornelius looked after the devout family and stayed the whole day and the whole night with them.
22,2. In the afternoon, the shepherds came again to worship the Infant, and brought various offerings.
22,3. However, as they saw tents and the Roman captain in the hut, they wanted to flee from him in great fear;
22,4. for there were many fugitives from the Roman registration among them, who were in great fear of the penalty that could be imposed on such fugitives.
22,5. The captain went to them and spoke: “Do not fear me, for I will abate your punishment; but bear in mind that the will of the Emperor must be fulfilled, and therefore come tomorrow, and I will register you as gently and mildly as possible!”
22,6. As the shepherds now learnt that Cornelius was such a mild person, they overcame their shyness and let themselves be registered on the following day.
22,7. After his talk with the shepherds, the captain asked Joseph, whether the sun would never leave the morning this time.
22,8. And Joseph replied: “This sun, which rose on the earth today, never! But the natural sun will set in a few hours after running its normal course according to the Lord’s will.”
22,9. Such was Joseph’s prophetic speech that he himself hardly knew and understood anything of what he had said!
22,10. But the captain asked Joseph: “What are you saying? – Look, I have not understood the meaning of your words; so speak to me in a more comprehensible way!”
22,11. And Joseph spoke: “A time will come in which you will warm yourself in the holy rays of this sun and will bathe in the stream of its Spirit!
22,12. I do not know what else to tell you and hardly understand myself what I have just said; in time, when I am no more, the magnificence of the eternal truth will be revealed to you.”
22,13. And the captain did not ask Joseph anything more and kept these profound words in his soul.
22,14. On the following day, the captain greeted the entire family and assured them that he would take care of them as long as they stayed there, and keep them in his heart all his life.
22,15. Subsequently, he went about his business and gave the midwife another coin to provide for the family.
22,16. And when the captain had left, Joseph spoke to his sons: “Children, how is it that a heathen is better than many a Jew? – Is it possible that here the words of Isaiah are fitting, when he said:
22,17. ‘Behold, my servants shall rejoice in good spirits; you, however, shall scream in anguish and howl in sorrow!’?” – And the sons of Joseph replied: “Yes, father, this passage is explained and understood in its entirety here.”
Chapter 23. – The departure to Jerusalem and the presentation in the temple
23,1. So Joseph spent six days in the cave and was visited daily by Cornelius, who diligently saw to it that the family would not lack anything.
23,2. During the early morning of the sixth day, an angel appeared to Joseph and spoke: “Obtain a pair of turtledoves, and depart for Jerusalem on the eighth day!
23,3. Mary shall sacrifice the turtledoves according to the law, and the Child must be circumcised and bear the name that has been indicated to you and Mary!
23,4. Return to this place after the circumcision, and stay here until I tell you when and where you shall go from here!
23,5. You, Joseph, will prepare to leave earlier; but I must tell you: you will not be able to leave this place one heartbeat earlier than it is the will of Him, who is with you in the cave!”
23,6. After these words the angel disappeared, and Joseph went to Mary and notified her of the angel’s words.
23,7. And Mary said to Joseph: “I am a maidservant of the Lord at all times, so may His will be done unto me!
23,8. And I had a dream today, and in this dream all happened as you disclosed now; so just get me the pair of turtledoves, and I will confidently leave here on the eighth day to go to the city of the Lord.”
23,9. Soon after the angel’s appearance, the captain came once again for a morning visit, and Joseph notified him as to why he would have to go to Jerusalem on the eighth day.
23,10. And the captain instantly offered Joseph all his facilities and wanted to give him a guide to lead him to Jerusalem.
23,11. But Joseph thanked him for his magnificent good will and spoke: “See, it is the will of my Lord God that I go into Jerusalem, just as I came to this place!
23,12. And so I will make the short journey in the same way, so that the Lord does not punish me for disobedience of His will.
23,13. However, as you wish to do something for me on this occasion, please provide me with two turtledoves, which have to be offered to the temple, and take care of this dwelling place for me!
23,14. For I will come back to this place on the ninth day and remain here as long as the Lord demands!”
23,15. And Cornelius promised Joseph to offer all that was requested, and thereupon departed, and himself brought Joseph a cage full of turtledoves, from which Joseph could select the most beautiful ones.
23,16. Subsequently, the captain returned to his duties and, in the meantime, left the cage of turtledoves in the cave until evening, till the time he himself went to fetch it back.
23,17. On the eighth day, after Joseph had departed for Jerusalem, Cornelius placed a guard in front of the cave, who prevented all from entering or leaving it, with the exception of the two eldest sons of Joseph who were left behind and Salome, who provided them with food and drink; for the midwife had also travelled to Jerusalem.
Chapter 24. – The circumcision and naming of the Infant. The devout Simeon and the Child Jesus
24,1. On the afternoon of the eighth day – according to present calculation, at around the third hour – the Infant was circumcised in the temple and received the name Jesus, the name given by the angel before He was even conceived in the womb.
24,2. And since in the extreme case of Mary’s proven virginity the time for her purification could be considered as fulfilled, Mary was immediately purified in the temple.
24,3. Therefore Mary took the Infant on her arm soon after the circumcision and carried Him into the temple, so that she, together with Joseph, could present Him to the Lord according to the Law of Moses.
24,4. For it is written in God’s law: “Every kind of firstborn must be consecrated to the Lord.”
24,5. And hence a pair of turtledoves or a pair of young pigeons should be sacrificed!”
24,6. And Mary offered a pair of turtledoves and laid them on the offering table; and the priest took the offering and blessed Mary.
24,7. There was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon, who was most devout and god-fearing and waited for the consolation of Israel; for the Holy Spirit was upon him.
24,8. And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen Jesus, the one anointed by God, the Messiah of the world.”
24.9. And, prompted by an inner urge, he came into the temple, where Joseph and Mary were still present with the Child Jesus and doing all that the law required.
24,10. As he saw the Infant, he immediately went to the parents and entreated them to let him take the Infant into his arms for a short while.
24,11. The most devout parents gladly agreed to this old, most devout man whom they knew well.
24,12. And Simeon took the Infant into his arms, most fervently praised God and then spoke:
24,13. “Lord! Now allow Your servant to go in peace, according to Your word;
24,14. for my eyes have now seen the Saviour, whom you promised to the fathers and the prophets.
24,15. This is the One, whom You prepared in the presence of all peoples!
24,16. A light of revelation to the pagans, and the glory of Your people Israel.”
24,17. Joseph and Mary were surprised themselves about Simeon’s words; for they still did not understand the things he had said about the Child.
24,18. Simeon returned the Infant to Mary, blessed both of them and said to Mary:
24,19. “Behold, this Child is set for the fall and rise of many in Israel; and for a sign that will be opposed!
24,20. A sword will pierce even your own soul, so that thoughts from many hearts may be revealed!”
24,21. And although Mary did not understand Simeon’s words, she kept them deep in her heart.
24,22. And Joseph also did the same and mightily praised God for it in his heart.
Chapter 25. – The prophetess Hannah
25,1. At this time, there was also a prophetess in the temple, called Hannah; she was a daughter of Phanuel, from the tribe of Asher.
25,2. She was already quite old and was so devout, that during her youth she had retained her virginity for seven years after her marriage because of her love of God.
25,3. In her eightieth year she became a widow, and immediately went to the temple and never left it.
25,4. There, at her own will, she served only the Lord God, with prayers and fasting almost throughout the day and night.
25,5. At that particular time, she was already four years in the temple and she now came over, praised the Lord God, and the Holy Spirit spoke through her to all those who awaited the Saviour of Jerusalem.
25,6. When she ended her prophetic words, she requested to hold the Infant, cuddled him and honoured and praised God.
25,7. Afterwards she returned the Infant to Mary and spoke to her: “Fortunate are you, o virgin, to be the mother of my Lord.
25,8. However, do not desire praise because of it; for only He, who suckles at your breast, is worthy to be honoured, praised and worshipped by us all!”
25,9. After these words the prophetess turned back, and Joseph and Mary, after spending close to three hours in the temple, went out and searched for accommodation with a relative.
25,10. As they came there, however, they found the house locked; for at this time, the relative was in Bethlehem for the registration.
25,11. Joseph did not know what he should do; for firstly, it was the dead of night, as is wont in the season of short daytime, and besides, there were almost no houses open at this time, as it was the day before the Sabbath.
25,12. It was too cold to stay overnight in the open, as there was hoarfrost on the fields and, moreover, there was a cold wind blowing.
25,13. As Joseph thought to and fro and appealed to the Lord for help in this difficulty,
25,14. behold, a young, distinguished Israelite walked up to Joseph and asked him: “What are you doing this late with your luggage in the lane? Are you not also an Israelite – and do not know the custom?”
25,15. Joseph said: “I am from the tribe of David! I was in the temple and offered a sacrifice to the Lord; but the early night came upon us very suddenly, and now I cannot find accommodation and have greatly concerned about my wife and her Child!”
25,16. And the young Israelite said to Joseph: “So come with me; I will rent you a room in an inn for a penny or its equivalent!”
25,17. And Joseph, together with Mary, who was on the pack animal, and with his three sons, followed the Israelite to a magnificent house and were lodged in a small, low room.
Chapter 26. – The rebuke of the inn proprietor Nicodemus
26,1. In the morning, as Joseph was getting ready for departure to Bethlehem, the young Israelite came and demanded the rent money.
26,2. But as he entered the small room, he was overcome by such great fear, that his lips could not utter a sound.
26,3. Joseph went up to him and said: “Friend! Look, what do you see on me that has the value of a penny? – Take that, as I do not possess any money!”
26,4. The Israelite now recovered somewhat and said with a trembling voice: “Man from Nazareth, only now do I recognize you! – You are Joseph, the carpenter, and you are the same one to whom Mary, the virgin of the Lord, was given by lot from the temple nine moons ago!
26,5. Here is the same virgin! – How have you cared for her, that she is now a mother in her fifteenth year? – What has happened?
26,6. Truly, you are not the father! For men of your age and your godliness, recognized throughout Israel, would never do such things.
26,7. However, you have grown-up sons; can you vouch for their innocence? Have you always kept an eye on them and observed all their thoughts, actions, everything they did?”
26,8. Joseph, however, retorted to the young man: “Now I have recognized you; you are Nicodemus, a son of Benjamin from the tribe of Levi! How is it that you propose to examine me, while it is not your role to do so? – The Lord has examined me on this matter in the holy shrine and on the mountain of damnation and vindicated me before the highest court; what blame do you still want to put on me and my sons?
26,9. Go to the temple and investigate in the highest court, and you will get a proper testimonial of my whole house!”
26,10. These words deeply pierced the heart of the young, rich man, and he said: “But for the Lord’s sake, if it is so, tell me, how it happened that this virgin has given birth! – Is it a miracle, or is it natural?”
26,11. Here the midwife who was present went to Nicodemus and spoke: “Good man! Here is the rent for the inadequate lodging! But do not hold us up here any longer; for we must reach Bethlehem today itself!
26,12. Only consider what it was that was given shelter in your house for a penny! – Truly, truly! Your most splendid rooms, adorned with gold and precious stones, would have been inadequate for the Glory of God, who stayed in this small room, which is, at best, suitable for convicts!
26,13. Go there and touch the Infant, so that the thick veil in front of your eyes is lifted and you can see who has visited you! – As the midwife I have the ancient right to permit you to touch the Infant.”
26,14. At this, Nicodemus went there and touched the Infant; and as he had touched Him, he got a glimpse of his inner vision, so that he saw the glory of God.
26,15. He immediately fell down before the Child, worshipped Him and spoke: “What mercy, what love and what compassion must be in You, o Lord, that You visit your people!
26,16. What should I do to my house and what to myself, now that I have not recognized the glory of God?!”
26,17. To this the midwife said: “Remain in all this, as you are; but keep an innermost silence on what you have seen, otherwise you will be subject to the tribunal of God!” – Thereupon Nicodemus returned the penny, went out weeping and hereafter adorned the small room with gold and precious stones. – And Joseph immediately went on his journey.
Chapter 27. – The return to Bethlehem
27,1. The eminent travellers once again arrived in Bethlehem in the evening, one hour before sunset, and settled in the familiar cave.
27,2. The two sons who had stayed behind, Salome and the captain came to meet them with open arms and asked those who had returned how the journey had been.
27,3. And Joseph narrated everything they had encountered, declaring in the end, that he, together with all the fellow travellers, had not eaten anything during that day; for the extremely limited supplies were barely sufficient for the weak Mary.
27,4. As the captain heard this, he immediately went to the back of the cave and came back with various food stuffs that were permitted to the Jews and spoke to Joseph:
27,5. “May your God bless this for you, and may you bless this according to your custom, and may all of you be strengthened and restored on this!”
27,6. And Joseph thanked God and blessed the food and then, in good spirits, ate together with Mary, his sons and the midwife.
27,7. However, carrying the Infant the whole day had become difficult for Mary, so she said to Joseph:
27,8. “Joseph, see, if only I had a small place beside me on which to lay down the Infant, so as to give my arms a little rest, then I would be well taken care of, and the Infant could grow in strength with a restful sleep!”
27,9. Before the captain was scarcely even aware of Mary’s wish, he immediately leapt into the back of the cave and hurriedly brought forth a manger that was meant for the sheep (and which looked like a present-day feeding trough in front of the inns in the countryside).
27,10. Salome immediately took the best straw and fresh hay, placed it inside the little crib, then covered it with a clean cloth and thus made a soft bed for the Infant.
27,11. Mary wrapped the Infant in fresh linen, pressed Him to her heart, kissed Him and then gave the Infant to Joseph, so that he could kiss him and then also to all the others. She then laid the Infant in the rather inadequate little bed for the Lord of the heaven and the earth!
27,12. The Infant slept quite peacefully, and Mary could now eat in peace and fortify herself from the meal that the most kind-hearted captain had prepared.
27,13. After the meal, Mary spoke again to Joseph: “Joseph, let my bed be made ready, for I am extremely tired from the journey and would like to rest!”
27,14. Salome said: “O mother of my Lord, look, this has already been taken care of; come and see!”
27,15. And Mary arose, took the Infant and had the crib carried into her tent and went to rest; and this was Mary’s first whole night’s sleep since giving birth.
27,16. And the captain made sure that the stove was lit diligently and white stones were warmed and put around Mary’s tent, so that the Infant would not suffer from cold; for it was a cold night, in which the water in the open air had turned into solid ice.
Chapter 28. – The news about the Persian caravan and of Herod’s search for the Child
28,1. The next morning, Joseph said: “Why should we stay here any longer? Mary feels strong again, so we want to leave for Nazareth, where we have good accommodation!”
28,2. However, as Joseph prepared to leave, the captain, who had had some work in the city before daybreak, returned once again and spoke to Joseph:
28,3. “God-worthy man! – You want to leave for the journey home; but I would like to dissuade you from it today and tomorrow!
28,4. See, I have just got information from my men, who arrived early today from Jerusalem, that three enormous Persian caravans have entered into Jerusalem!
28,5. Three main leaders, who are Magi, have made specific inquiries with Herod about the newborn King of the Jews!
28,6. Herod, as a Roman tenant sovereign from Greece who knows nothing of this, turned to the high priests, so that they could reveal the birthplace of the newly Anointed to him.
28,7. They announced to him that such an event would occur in Judea, and particularly in Bethlehem, for it was written in the Scriptures!
28,8. Herod then dismissed the priests and, together with all his servants, went to the three leaders and revealed to them what he had learnt from the high priests,
28,9. and then suggested to the three to conduct a diligent search for the newly Anointed of the Jews, and if they should find the Child, to return to him immediately, so that he too could go there and pay homage to the Child.
28,10. But do you know, my dearest friend Joseph, that I do not trust the Persians, and least of all do I trust the most tyrannical Herod?!
28,11. These Persians are believed to be Magi and are said to have found out about the birth through a strange star. This I will not dispute in the least; for such great miracles have taken place during the birth of this Infant, that similar events could have occurred in Persia as well.
28,12. However, in this matter it is also the most unfortunate circumstance; for evidently it involves this Child. If the Persians find Him, then Herod will also find Him!
28,13. And we will need to put up a big fight to elude this cunning old fox!
28,14. So, as I said before, you must stay at least three more days at this remote place. Within this period I will certainly be able to get the king-seekers to change their direction; because you see, I have command over twelve legions of soldiers here! – For your peace of mind, I will not say anymore. You now know the essentials; therefore stay! I will now go away again and return to you around noon!”
28,15. Joseph, who, together with his family, was intimidated by this news, stayed and waited in all humility in the Lord’s Will, to see what this strange providence would lead to.
28,16. And he went to Mary and told her what he had just learnt from the captain.
28,17. Mary spoke: “The Lord’s will be done! What bitter events have we already encountered – and the Lord has transformed them all into honey!
28,18. The Persians will certainly not harm us, if they are really supposed to come to us; and if they are hired to use any force upon us, well, through God’s grace we have the protection of the captain!”
28,19. And Joseph said: “Mary, all this is right! I do not fear the Persians so greatly; but the grey-bearded Herod, this rapacious animal in human form, – it is him I fear, and even the captain dreads him!
28,20. For if it is ascertained, perhaps by the Persians, that our Infant Son is the newly-anointed King, then our only recourse would be a despicable flight!
28,21. For then even our captain, out of Roman political considerations would, for his own well-being, have to become an enemy. He will have to pursue us instead of helping us, if he does not want to be regarded as a traitor to his emperor!
28,22. And he has surely also realized this for himself, as he expressed his significant doubts about Herod to me.
28,23. That is why, I assume, he is making us wait here for three more days! If all goes well, he will certainly remain our friend;
28,24. if not, he has us at hand to deliver us to Herod’s cruelty, and moreover, will receive a great honour from his emperor for so cleverly removing the Jewish King, who could have one day endangered the state, from this world!”
28,25. Hereupon Mary said: “Joseph! Do not needlessly frighten yourself and me! – Look, we drank the accursed water, and nothing happened to us! Why then should we be afraid, since we have, on account of this Child, seen and confirmed so much of the glory of God?!
28,26. Let it happen as it should, I tell you: The Lord is mightier than the Persians, Herod, the Roman emperor and the captain together with his twelve legions! Thus be calm, as you see that I am calm!
28,27. Incidentally, I am confident, that the captain will do his utmost before he is forced to become our enemy!”
28,28. Thereupon the good, devout Joseph again felt reassured and went forth and awaited the captain. He let his sons heat the cave and boil some fruits for Mary, for himself and the sons.
Chapter 29. – The testimonial of the Child by the three wise men: a King of Kings, a Lord of Lords, the Everlasting Lord!
29,1. Noon had approached, but the captain was late this time, and Joseph counted the seconds in fearful anticipation; but the captain did not appear.
29,2. Hence Joseph turned to the Lord and spoke: “My God and my Lord, I beg you not to let me feel so greatly frightened; for look, I am old and quite weak in all my limbs!
29,3. Therefore give me strength by telling me what to do, so that I do not disgrace myself before all the sons of Israel!”
29,4. As Joseph prayed thus, behold, the captain arrived almost breathless and spoke to Joseph:
29,5. “My most highly respected man! – Just at this moment, I have returned from a march with an entire legion to a place that is one-third the distance towards Jerusalem, so that I could espy something of the Persians,
29,6. and have posted spies everywhere, but have not discovered anything until now! However, rest assured, for when they come, they will have to encounter the sentries I have posted!
29,7. It shall not be too easy for them to break through anywhere and reach this place, before I have interrogated them and judged their plans! – So I will immediately go back and reinforce the sentries; in the evening I will be with you!”
29,8. Now the captain hurried off and Joseph praised God and spoke to his sons: “Now set the food on the table, and you, Salome, ask Mary, whether she would like to eat with us at the table, or wants us to bring it to her tent?”
29,9. Mary, however, came out of the tent with the Infant in very happy spirits and spoke: “As I am strong enough, I will eat with you at the table; only fetch the little crib for the Baby!”
29,10. Joseph was overjoyed to hear this and placed the best food in front of her; and she praised the Lord God and ate and drank.
29,11. She had hardly finished eating, however, when a loud noise came from the entrance of the cave. Joseph sent Joel to check what was happening.
29,12. As Joel looked out of the door (for the cave was timbered at the exit), he saw a whole caravan of Persians with laden camels and spoke anxiously:
29,13. “Father Joseph! For the Lord’s sake, we are lost! – For look, the notorious Persians are here with many camels and numerous attendants!
29,14. They are pitching tents and setting up camp in a wide circle, completely encircling our cave, and three leaders adorned with gold, silver and precious stones, are unpacking golden sacks and seem to prepare themselves to approach the cave!”
29,15. This news made our good Joseph almost speechless; with great effort he brought out the words: “Lord, be merciful to a poor sinner like me! – Yes, now we are lost!” – Mary took the Child and hurried into her tent and said: “Only when I am dead, will you be able to take Him from me!”
29,16. Joseph then went to the door, accompanied by his sons, and furtively looked out to see what the Persians were doing.
29,17. When he saw the big caravan and the pitched tents, he was doubly alarmed, and in his great distress, began to beseech the Lord most fervently for assistance just this once.
29,18. As he implored thus, behold, the captain arrived in full armour, led by a thousand soldiers, and lined up the soldiers on both sides of the cave.
29,19. He went forth and interrogated the three Magi, as to the motive for their arrival and the manner in which they – completely undetected by him – had reached this place.
29,20. And the three spoke with one voice: “Do not consider us enemies, for you can see that we do not carry arms, either openly or concealed!
29,21. We are astronomers from Persia, and we have an old prophecy in which it is written, that during this time a King of Kings will be born to the Jews, and His birth will be indicated by a star.
29,22. And whoever saw the star should make a journey and follow the mighty star; for they will find the Saviour of the world at the place where the star comes to a stop!
29,23. And look, the star has halted above this stable, surely visible to everyone even in broad daylight! – This led us to this place; it is here, however, above this stable, that it remains standing, and without hesitation we have reached the spot in which the living Wonder of Wonders can be found, a newly-born Child, a King of Kings, a Lord of Lords from eternity!
29,24. We must see, worship and pay the greatest homage to Him! – Therefore, do not want to get in our way; for surely no evil star has led us here!”
29,25. At this, the captain looked for the star and was highly astonished by it; for firstly, it stood quite low in the sky, and secondly, it was almost as bright as the natural light of the sun.
29,26. As the captain had ascertained all this, he spoke to the three men: “Good, I am convinced from your words and from the star, that you have come here for an honest purpose; however, I do not understand why you went first to Herod in Jerusalem! – Did the star also show you that path?
29,27. Why did your miracle guide not lead you here straightaway, as obviously this place was the intended one? – I demand an answer on this from you, otherwise you will not enter the cave!”
29,28. The three men said: “The great God will know the reason! It must have surely been His plan; for none of us ever thought of going even close to Jerusalem!
29,29. And you may entirely believe us when we say that we did not at all like the people of Jerusalem, and least of all, the sovereign Herod! However, as we were already there and the attention of the whole city was on us, we had no option but to indicate our intention!
29,30. The priests informed us through the sovereign, who requested us to bring him news about the discovered King, so that he too could come and pay homage to the new King.”
29,31. The captain said: “You will never do this; for I know the intention of this sovereign! You might rather remain here as captives! – I will now go inside and confer with the father of the Child about you.”
Chapter 30. – The star of the three wise men and the old prophecy of the Persian astronomers Caspar, Melchior and Balthazar. The accompanying spirits: Adam, Cain and Abraham.
30,1. As the good Joseph heard all this, his troubled heart was relieved; and as he heard that the captain would come to him, he made himself ready to receive him.
30,2. And the captain entered, greeted Joseph and spoke to him: “My most highly respected man!
30,3. See, the people from the East, now waiting outside, have arrived here through miraculous providence. – I have strictly examined them and have found no malice in them!
30,4. They wish to pay homage to the Child according to the promise of their God, and so I am of the opinion that you can allow them to enter without the least fear, whenever it is convenient for you.”
30,5. And Joseph spoke: “If it this so, then I will praise and glorify my God; for He has once again taken a heavy stone from my heart!
30,6. However, Mary was somewhat afraid earlier, when the Persians began to camp around the cave; so I must first check how she feels about this, so that an unprepared entry of these guests does not frighten her even more than she already is.”
30,7. The captain approved of Joseph’s circumspection and Joseph went to Mary and informed her of everything he had heard from the captain.
30,8. And Mary spoke in very happy spirits: “Peace be unto all men on earth, who are faithful and good in heart, and who allow their will to be guided by God!
30,9. They should come when it is indicated to them by the Lord’s spirit, and shall reap the blessings of their devotion! – For I do not have the slightest fear of them!
30,10. However, when they enter, you must stay close to me; for it is not proper that I receive them all alone!”
30,11. Joseph said: “Mary, when you have the strength, then get up with the Child, take the crib and lay Him in it, and then the guests can enter and honour the Child!”
30,12. And Mary immediately carried out Joseph’s wishes, and Joseph then spoke to the captain:
30,13. “Well, we are ready; so if the three men wish to enter, you can tell them that we have made all preparations to receive them in our indigence!”
30,14. And the captain went out and announced this to the three men. – The three men immediately fell down upon the ground, praised God for this permission, then took the golden sacks and proceeded reverently to the cave.
30,15. The captain opened the door, and the three men entered into the cave with great reverence; for at the moment of their entry, a powerful light emanated from the Child.
30,16. As the three wise men were a few steps away from the crib in which the Infant lay, they immediately fell down upon their faces and worshipped Him.
30,17. They remained in this bent position for one hour before the Child, gripped by the deepest reverence; then they slowly arose and knelt, while lifting their tear-filled faces to see the Lord, the Creator of infinity and eternity.
30,18. The names of the three men were: Caspar, Melchior and Balthazar.
30,19. And the first, accompanied by the spirit of Adam, spoke: “Give God the honour, the praise, the glory! Hosanna, hosanna, hosanna God, the Trinity, in all eternity!”
30,20. Here he took the gold-adorned bag, which had thirty-three pounds of the finest frankincense, and handed it over with great deference to Mary with the words:
30,21. “Take without shyness, o mother, this humble testimonial of That, which will always fill my entire being! – Take this poor external tribute, for every thinking creature is eternally indebted to his almighty Creator from the bottom of his heart!”
30,22. Mary took the heavy bag and gave it to Joseph, and the donor got up, went and stood at the door, knelt again and worshipped the Lord in the Child.
30,23. And immediately the second man, a Moor, who was accompanied by the spirit of Cain, raised a somewhat smaller bag, albeit of the same weight, that was filled with the purest gold, and handed it to Mary with the words:
30,24. “I offer that what is worthy of the King of the spirits and the men on earth, the smallest sacrifice for you, o Lord of everlasting glory! – Take it, o mother, who has given birth to Him, who all the angels’ tongues will never be able to express!”
30,25. Here Mary accepted the second bag and handed it over to Joseph. – And the wise man who made the offering went to the first wise man and did as he did.
30,26. Then the third man got up, took his bag, which was filled with the finest gold myrrh, one of the most valuable spices of that time, and handed it over to Mary with the words:
30,27. “The spirit of Abraham is accompanying me and is now seeing the day of the Lord, to which he had looked forward with such great joy!
30,28. I, Balthazar, make a small offering that is worthy of the Child of all the children! – Take it, o mother of all mercy! – However, I hold a better offering in my heart; it is my love, – this shall eternally be my truest offering to this Child!”
30,29. Here Mary took the heavy bag, also weighing thirty-three pounds, and handed it over to Joseph. – The wise man then got up and went to the first two, worshipped the Infant and after completing his prayer, went out with the other two men to where their tents were pitched.
Chapter 31. – The three blessed gifts of God: His holy will, His mercy and His love
31,1. As the three wise men had left and had returned to their tents for rest, Mary said to Joseph:
31,2. “Look, look now, you fearful, anxious man, how marvellous and good the Lord, our God, is, how fatherly He cares for us!
31,3. Who could have imagined such a thing even in a dream! Out of our dread He has brought about such a blessing and has transformed all our great fear and worry into such great joy!
31,4. Precisely from those whom we feared were after the life of the Child, did we find out that they offered Him only glory, in the way we are only and always indebted to God, the Lord!
31,5. In addition, they have given us such bounteous presents, that we can buy a most respectable place in the country from its sale, where we can provide the godly Child with the best possible upbringing according to the Lord’s will!
31,6. O Joseph! – Today I will first thank, praise and glorify the most loving Lord all night long; for He has forestalled our poverty to the extent that we can now manage very well! – What do you say to that, dear father Joseph?”
31,7. And Joseph spoke: “Yes, Mary, our God is infinitely good to those, who love Him above all else and direct all their hopes to Him alone; – however, I believe that these gifts are meant for the Child, and not us, and so we do not have the right to make use of them as we like.
31,8. The Child is called Jesus and is the Son of God Most High; so we must first ask the all-possessing father what should be done with these treasures!
31,9. And we will do whatever He orders us to do with them; I will not touch them all my life without His will and I would rather earn your and my blessed livelihood in the most arduous manner!
31,10. I have until now supported you and my sons with the manual work that is blessed by the Lord; so I hope to continue doing that with the help of the Lord!
31,11. That is why I am not looking at these gifts, but only at the will of the Lord and His mercy and love.
31,12. These are the three greatest, at all times mightily blessed gifts of God to us; His holy will is the most exquisite frankincense, His mercy is the purest and heaviest gold, and His love is the most fragrant myrrh!
31,13. We may use these three treasures extravagantly without fear at all times; however, we should not touch this frankincense, gold and myrrh in the golden sacks without the first three principal treasures, that have paid us the most abundant dividends until now.
31,14. So, dear Mary, this is what we should do, and I know, that the Lord will look upon us with great pleasure; his pleasure is our greatest treasure!
31,15. What do you think, fairest Mary, am I right or not? Is this not the right decision with regard to these treasures?”
31,16. Here Mary was touched to tears and praised Joseph’s wisdom. And the captain fell on Joseph’s neck and spoke: “Yes, you are a true man according to the will of your God!” – The Infant smiled at Joseph, raised a tiny hand as if He blessed the foster father, the most devout Joseph.
Chapter 32. – The angel as adviser of the three wise men
32,1. The three wise men now gathered in one tent and discussed what they should do next.
32,2. Should they keep their word to Herod, or should they break their word for the first time?
32,3. And in the event that they would have to return to their country by another route, the question was which route would bring them safely back.
32,4. And one of them asked the others: “Will the miraculous star that led us to this place, also lead us back home by a new route?”
32,5. As they conferred with each other, behold, an angel appeared among them and spoke to them: “Do not fear uselessly, for the way has already been paved!
32,6. As straight as the sun’s rays fall upon the earth at noon, just that straight you will be led to your country tomorrow, and this route will not pass through Jerusalem!”
32,7. Thereupon the angel disappeared and the three wise men retired for the night. Early in the morning, they left the place and soon arrived in their country via the shortest route, and they announced the great glory of God to all and awakened the true faith in the united God in them.
32,8. In the same morning, Joseph asked the captain how much longer he still had to stay in this cave.
32,9. The captain said to Joseph in the friendliest possible manner: “My most highly respected man! Do you then suppose that I am keeping you here as a prisoner?
32,10. What an idea! – How can I, a worm in the dust before the power of your God, ever hold you prisoner!? – What my love for you does, see, is not captivity!
32,11. As far as my power is concerned your are free at any hour and can go wherever you want! – However, you are not as free of my heart; for it wants to keep you here for all time, because it loves you and your little Son with indescribable strength!
32,12. Be patient for a few more days; I will immediately send scouts into Jerusalem and find out what the cunning old devil plans to do, now that the Persians have not kept their word!
32,13. I will then know what to do and will protect you against any persecution from this ruthless tyrant.
32,14. For you can believe me when I say that Herod is the greatest enemy of my heart, and I will strike him, wherever and whenever I can!
32,15. I am, of course, only a captain and am myself a subordinate to a higher-ranked general, who resides in Sidon and Smyrna and commands twelve legions in Asia.
32,16. However, I am not a common centurion, but a patrician, and according to my title, also have command over the twelve legions in Asia! So if I want to deploy any of the legions, I do not need to first make a request in Smyrna, but as a patrician I only need to command and the legion would have to obey me! Therefore you can count on me if Herod should appear!”
32,17. Joseph thanked the captain for this most kindly care, sat down and then spoke:
32,18. “Listen to me, honourable friend! – See, you had previously made the most careful plans to deal with the Persians; but of what use were they in the end?!
32,19. The Persians arrived unseen by all your thousand eyes and had already set up camp, before you even discovered them!
32,20. See, if my Lord, my God, had not guarded me, where would I be now, even with your help? The Persians could have strangulated me, together with my entire family, long before you appeared!
32,21. Therefore I say to you as a friend with the utmost gratitude: human help is worthless; for men are nothing before God!
32,22. If, however, the Lord God wishes to help us, and God alone can help, we need not take too much trouble; for in spite of many efforts on our part, everything will happen only according to the Lord’s wishes, and never according to ours.
32,23. Therefore refrain from laborious and dangerous reconnaissance in Jerusalem, through which firstly, only little relevant information can be obtained, and secondly, a harsh fate could be the consequence for you, on my account!
32,24. This night, the Lord will surely indicate to me what Herod will do, and what I must do; therefore, along with me, you should not worry at all and let the Lord prevail over me and you, and all will be right.”
32,25. As the captain heard Joseph’s speech, his emotions were greatly roused, and it caused him pain that Joseph had refused his help.
32,26. Joseph spoke: “Good, dearest friend! It pains you because I have dissuaded you of taking care of my future welfare.
32,27. But if you look at the matter in a clear light, you will necessarily agree with me!
32,28. See, which one of us has ever carried the sun and the moon and all the stars across the skies? Which one of us has ever commanded the winds, storms and strikes of lightning?
32,29. Who has dug a bed for the mighty sea, and which one of us has marked out the paths of the great rivers?
32,30. Which bird have we taught the swift flight and when have we arranged their plumage? When have we made their throats with which they can make such melodious sounds?
32,31. Where is the grass which grows from the living seeds created by us?
32,32. See, the Lord does all this every day! – As His mighty and wonderful reign reminds you at every moment of His infinitely loving care, how can you wonder when I most amicably point out to you that before God all human help sinks back in the dust of insignificance?”
32,33. These words put the captain again in a positive mood; but, nevertheless, he secretly sent scouts to Jerusalem to find out what was happening there.
Chapter 33. – The preparation for the flight to Egypt
33,1. During this night, an angel appeared in a dream to Joseph as well as to Mary, and spoke:
33,2. “Joseph! Sell the treasure and buy yourself some pack animals; for you and your family must flee to Egypt!
33,3. See, Herod has erupted in fury because he was deceived by the wise men and has resolved to kill all the children from one to twelve years of age!
33,4. The wise men were to inform him where the new King had been born, so that he could have sent his thugs to kill the Child, who is the new King.
33,5. We angels of heaven were instructed by the Lord, before He came on earth, to keep a most attentive watch over you and guard your safety!
33,6. Hence I have now come to you to tell you what Herod will do, since he cannot be certain that he can seize the One.
33,7. The captain himself must pay his dues to Herod, if he does not want to be betrayed by him to the emperor; therefore you shall start your journey tomorrow itself!
33,8. You can also inform the captain about this, and he will help you with your prompt departure! – So let this be done in the name of Him, who lives and suckles on Mary’s breast!”
33,9. Here Joseph awoke, as also did Mary, who immediately called Joseph in a frightened voice and then narrated her dream to him.
33,10. At that moment, Joseph saw the angel’s face in Mary’s narration and said: “Mary, do not worry, before noon we will be on our way over the mountains – and in seven days in Egypt!
33,11. As dawn is already coming now, I will go out at once and make preparations for a quick departure.”
33,12. Joseph went with the three eldest sons, took the treasure and carried it to a money-changer, who bought up everything for a fair price.
33,13. Afterwards, led by a servant of the money-changer, Joseph went to a trader in pack animals, and immediately bought six mules and returned well-equipped to the cave.
33,14. There, the captain already awaited him and immediately related to him the most atrocious and despicable news that he had received from Jerusalem.
33,15. Joseph, however, did not wonder at the Captain’s narration, but spoke in a tone which revealed his faith in God:
33,16. “Honoured friend! What you tell me now, all that and many more details of Herod’s decision, has been revealed to me last night by the Lord, just as I had foretold you yesterday!
33,17. See, you yourself have to pay tribute to him; for he wants all the children from a few weeks up to twelve years, in and around Bethlehem and in the city, be strangulated, so that he can also get my child!
33,18. Therefore I must flee from here today itself, and go wherever the Lord leads me to escape Herod’s atrocity.
33,19. So I request you to show me a safe route to Sidon; for I must leave in one hour!”
33,20. As the captain heard this, he became most angry about Herod and swore indefatigable vengeance against him, saying:
33,21. “Joseph, I swear by the daybreak and the sun in the horizon, I swear by your God that is living, I swear as a noble patrician from Rome that I would rather be crucified, than allow this ruthless tyrant to commit such atrocity with impunity!
33,22. I will lead you over the mountains myself under adequate cover; and when I know you are in safety, I will hastily return and quickly send a messenger to Rome, who will inform the emperor of all that Herod is planning to do.
33,23. I will do everything I can think of to thwart the plan of that monster.”
33,24. And Joseph replied: “Good and honourable friend! If you can do something, then at least protect the children between three and twelve years! This will be within your power!
33,25. But you will not have the power to protect the infants from the time of birth until their second year!
33,26. You will be able to offer protection to the older children not by force, but only by wisdom!
33,27. The Lord will guide you in this wisdom! Therefore do not think too much about what you will do; for the Lord will guide you in secret!”
33,28. The captain spoke: “No, no, the blood of children will not flow; I would rather use military force!”
33,29. Joseph spoke: “See, what can you do, now that Herod leaves Jerusalem with an entire Roman legion – will you enter into battle against your own forces? – Hence act according to the Lord’s guidance, so that you can, in an amicable way, save the three-to twelve-year-old children!”– Thereupon the captain gave in to Joseph.
Chapter 34. – The departure for the flight
34,1. After this discussion with the captain, Joseph spoke to his sons: “Rush out and get the animals ready!
34,2. Saddle the six newly-bought mules and the old, tried one for Mary! Take along as much food as you can; we will, however, leave the ox with the cart to the midwife as a keepsake and as payment for her attentiveness towards us!”
34,3. So the midwife took possession of the ox with the cart and was not required for further work.
34,4. Salome, however, asked Joseph whether she might go along with him.
34,5. And Joseph spoke: “That is up to you; you know that I am poor and cannot pay you if you work for me as a maidservant!
34,6. However, if you have the means and can take care of your food and clothing along with me, you may follow me!”
34,7. Salome spoke: “Listen, son of the great King David! My means will suffice not only for me, but also for your entire family for a hundred years!
34,8. For I am richer in worldly goods than you can imagine! Wait for only one hour and I will be ready to travel, laden with treasure!”
34,9. Joseph spoke: “Salome, see, you are a young widow; you must also bring along your two sons!
34,10. This entails a lot of work for you, and I do not have one minute to lose; for Herod will reach this region in three hours, and his forerunners and runners will already be here in one hour!
34,11. Hence you can see, that it is impossible for me to wait for your preparations!
34,12. I think it would be better if you stayed, so that I am not delayed because of you; if, however, the Lord’s will makes me return to this place, I will again settle in Nazareth.
34,13. Since you wish to be of service to me, please go to Nazareth occasionally and lease out my property for another three to seven years, so that it does not fall into the hands of strangers!”
34,14. And Salome relinquished her demand and contented herself with this assignment.
34,15. Afterward Joseph embraced the captain and blessed him – and then called out to Mary to sit on her animal, together with the Infant.
34,16. As everything was now ready for their departure, the captain spoke to Joseph: “My most highly respected man! – Will I ever see you again! – And this Child with the mother?!”
34,17. And Joseph spoke: “It will be barely three years before I, and the Child with His mother, will greet you once again! Rest assured on this; – now let us depart, Amen.” –
34,18. Here Joseph mounted his animal, and his sons followed his example; and Joseph seized the reins of Mary’s animal and led it out of the cave, all the while praising the Lord.
34,19. As all were outside, Joseph saw a crowd of people from the city hastening to see the newborn Child, for they had heard about the departure of the Child from the midwife who had returned to her home, and through the money-changer.
34,20. But this crowd of onlookers was most inconvenient to Joseph; he thus requested the Lord to take him away from this contemptible gawking crowd as soon as possible.
34,21. And behold, a dense fog descended over the entire city at that moment, and it was not possible for anyone to see more than five paces.
34,22. This annoyed the crowd and it returned to the city, and Joseph, led by the captain and Salome, was able to reach the next mountain range unseen.
34,23. As he reached the border between Judea and Syria, the captain gave Joseph a letter of safe-conduct addressed to the regional governor Cyrenius, who was appointed over Syria.
34,24. Joseph accepted it gratefully, and the captain spoke: “Cyrenius is a brother to me; I need say no more, so travel safely and return in the same manner!” Thereupon the captain turned back, together with Salome, and Joseph continued on his way in the name of the Lord.
34,25. At around noon, Joseph had reached the summit of the mountain, at a distance of twelve hours from Bethlehem. The summit lay wholly within Syria, and was also called Coelesyria by the Romans in those days.
34,26. Joseph had to make this rather long detour, as no safe way led from Palestine to Egypt.
34,27. His itinerary was as follows: on the first day, he came near the small town of Bostra. He stayed there overnight, praising the Lord. That is where the robbers came to steal from him.
34,28. However, when they saw the Infant, they fell on their faces, prayed to Him, and then fled into the mountains in great fear.
34,29. The next day, Joseph again crossed a big mountain range and arrived in the region of Panea, a small border town between Palestine and northern Syria.
34,30. From Panea, he arrived in the province of Phoenicia on the third day and came to the region of Tyre, where he handed over the letter of safe-conduct to Cyrenius, who had some duties in Tyre during that time.
34,31. Cyrenius received Joseph in a most friendly manner and asked him what he could do for him.
34,32. Joseph spoke: “That I might reach Egypt safely!” – And Cyrenius said: “Good man, you have taken a long detour; for Palestine is much closer to Egypt than Phoenicia! Now you will still need to wander through Palestine – and must go from here to Samaria, then to Joppe, from there to Ascalon, from there to Gaza, from there to Gerasa, and only from there can you go to Elusa in Arabia!”
34,33. Joseph was sad when he realized how far he had gone astray. However, Cyrenius took pity on Joseph and spoke: “Good man, your distress pains me. You may be a Jew and an enemy of the Romans; but since my brother, my all, has so much love for you, I too will do something in friendship.
34,34. See, a small but safe ship will leave from here to Ostracine tomorrow! This ship will take you there in three days; and once you are in Ostracine, you will be already in Egypt! – I will give you a letter of safe-conduct, which will allow you stay and buy some supplies in Ostracine without hindrance. For today, however, you are my guest; please have your luggage brought in!”