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The Apocryphal Old Testament Collection of the most important non-canonical Old Testament books designed for general use.

Chapter V

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Text Commentary

1And it came to pass when the sons of men began to increase on the earth, and daughters were born to them, that in the first year of this jubilee the angels of God looked on them and saw that they were beautiful; and they took wives from as many of them as they chose. 2And they bore them sons; and they were giants. And lawlessness increased on the earth, and the way of life of every creature 1 Lit. ‘of all flesh’. became corrupted – men, cattle, wild animals, and birds alike, everything that lives 2 Lit. ‘walks’. on earth: corrupt were the ways of all of them and of the whole natural order; 3 Lit. ‘all of them corrupted their way and their order’. and they began to devour one another. And lawlessness increased on the earth, and men's thoughts and inclinantions were never anything but evil. 3And God looked on the earth and behold, it was corrupt: the whole natural order was corrupt; 4 Lit. ‘and all flesh had corrupted its order’. and all creatures on earth had done every kind of evil before his eyes. 4And he said he would destroy 5 Alternative reading ‘I will destroy’. man and all creatures 6 Lit. ‘flesh’. on the earth, which he had created. 7 Alternative reading ‘which has been created’. 5Noah alone found favour with the Lord. 6And against the angels he had sent on earth his anger was so great that he uprooted them from the place of their dominion and commanded us to imprison them in the depths of the earth; and behold, they are in prison there and kept in a separate place.

7And against their sons a commandment went forth from him 8 Lit. ‘a voice went from his face’. that they should die by the sword and be removed from under heaven. 8And he said, My spirit shall not remain in men for ever; for they are mortal 6 Lit. ‘flesh’. too, and their life-span 9 Lit. ‘their days’. shall be a hundred and twenty years. 9And he sent his sword 10 Alternative reading ‘the sword’. among them, so that they should kill each other; and they began to kill each other, till all of them had fallen by the sword and were destroyed from the earth.

10And their fathers were witnesses of their destruction; and after this they were imprisoned in the depths of the earth for ever – till the great judgement-day, when sentence will be passed on all whose way of life and behaviour 11 Alternative reading ‘thoughts’ (as in verse 19). have been corrupt before the Lord. 11And he will destroy 12 All these verbs are perfects in the Ethiopic, in all probability through failure on the part of the translator of the Greek version (from which the Ethiopic was made) to appreciate the sequence of tenses in the Hebrew original. all of them from their places, and not one shall be left 12 All these verbs are perfects in the Ethiopic, in all probability through failure on the part of the translator of the Greek version (from which the Ethiopic was made) to appreciate the sequence of tenses in the Hebrew original. that he will not judge 12 All these verbs are perfects in the Ethiopic, in all probability through failure on the part of the translator of the Greek version (from which the Ethiopic was made) to appreciate the sequence of tenses in the Hebrew original. as their wickedness deserves. 12And he will create 12 All these verbs are perfects in the Ethiopic, in all probability through failure on the part of the translator of the Greek version (from which the Ethiopic was made) to appreciate the sequence of tenses in the Hebrew original. a new and righteous nature for all his creatures, 13 Lit. ‘works’. so that in their nature they will never sin again, but all be righteous, each in his kind, always. 13And the judgement of every one is ordained and written on the heavenly tablets, and there is no injustice in it: all who stray from the path marked out for them to follow, and do not follow it – judgement is written down for them, for every creature and for every kind of creature. 14And there is nothing in heaven or earth, or in light or darkness, or in Sheol or in the depth, or in the place of darkness, which will not be judged; and all their judgements are ordained and written and engraved. 14 Or ‘decided’. 15From every angle he will judge them, the great man as a great man, the small man as a small man, and each according to his way of life. 16And he is not one to respect persons, nor is he one who will accept bribes, when he says he will pass sentence on everyone: if one were to give him everything on earth, he would not take notice of the bribes or of the person of anyone, nor would he accept anything at his hands; for he is a righteous judge. 17And about the sons of Israel it has been written and ordained, If they repent in righteousness, he will forgive all their transgressions and pardon all their sins. 18It is written and ordained that he will show mercy to all who repent of all their sins they have committed inadvertently, once every year.

19And as for all those whose way of life and thoughts had become corrupt before the flood, no man had mercy shown him but Noah only: he had mercy shown him, 15 The phrase translated ‘show mercy to’ in this verse (lit. ‘lift the face of’) is the same as that translated ‘respect the person of’ in verse 16 above. together with his sons, 16 Lit. ‘concerning his sons’. whom God saved from the waters of the flood because of him; for his heart was righteous in all his ways and his life in accord with what he had been commanded, and he had not strayed in any way from the path marked out for him. 17 Lit. ‘from anything ordained for him’. 20And the Lord said he would destroy everything on the dry land, men and cattle, wild animals and birds, and everything that moves on earth. 21And he commanded Noah to make an ark, to save himself 18 Alternative reading ‘that he might save him’. from the waters of the flood. 22And Noah made the ark in all respects as he commanded him, in the twenty-seventh 19 So Charles, in accord with the Samaritan Chronicle and with the support of the dates at the end of chap. iv. All MSS read ‘twenty-second’. jubilee of years, in the fifth week in the fifth year. 23And he went in in the sixth year of it, in the second month, from the new moon of the second month till the sixteenth day. And he and all that we brought him went into the ark; and the Lord closed it from the outside on the seventeenth evening.

24And the Lord opened seven flood-gates of heaven, and the mouths of the springs of the great abyss (seven mouths in number). 25And the flood-gates began to pour down water from heaven forty days and forty nights, and the springs of the abyss also sent up waters, till the whole world was full of water. 26And the waters increased over the earth: fifteen cubits higher than the highest mountains did the waters rise; 20 Lit. ‘fifteen cubits did the waters rise above every mountain’. and the ark was lifted up above the earth, and it floated 21 Lit. ‘moved’. on the surface of the waters. 27And the water remained on the surface of the earth five months – for a hundred and fifty days. 28And the ark ran aground 22 Lit. ‘went and rested’. on the top of Lubar, one of the mountains of Ararat. 29And in the fourth month the springs of the great abyss were exhausted and the flood-gates of heaven were restrained; and on the new moon of the seventh month all the mouths of the abysses of the earth were opened, and the water began to descend into the depths below. 23 Lit. ‘into the uttermost (or ‘western’) deep’. 30And on the new moon of the tenth month the tops of the mountains were seen; and on the new moon of the first month the earth became visible. 31And the waters dried up from the surface of 24 Or ‘the higher parts of’ (lit. ‘above’). the earth in the fifth week, in the seventh year of it; and on the seventeenth day in the second month the earth was dry. 32And on the twenty-seventh of it he opened the ark and let out the wild animals and cattle 25 Most MSS om. ‘and cattle’. and birds and every living creature. 26 Lit. ‘every moving thing’.

Notes:

1 Lit. ‘of all flesh’.

2 Lit. ‘walks’.

3 Lit. ‘all of them corrupted their way and their order’.

4 Lit. ‘and all flesh had corrupted its order’.

5 Alternative reading ‘I will destroy’.

6 Lit. ‘flesh’.

7 Alternative reading ‘which has been created’.

8 Lit. ‘a voice went from his face’.

9 Lit. ‘their days’.

10 Alternative reading ‘the sword’.

11 Alternative reading ‘thoughts’ (as in verse 19).

12 All these verbs are perfects in the Ethiopic, in all probability through failure on the part of the translator of the Greek version (from which the Ethiopic was made) to appreciate the sequence of tenses in the Hebrew original.

13 Lit. ‘works’.

14 Or ‘decided’.

15 The phrase translated ‘show mercy to’ in this verse (lit. ‘lift the face of’) is the same as that translated ‘respect the person of’ in verse 16 above.

16 Lit. ‘concerning his sons’.

17 Lit. ‘from anything ordained for him’.

18 Alternative reading ‘that he might save him’.

19 So Charles, in accord with the Samaritan Chronicle and with the support of the dates at the end of chap. iv. All MSS read ‘twenty-second’.

20 Lit. ‘fifteen cubits did the waters rise above every mountain’.

21 Lit. ‘moved’.

22 Lit. ‘went and rested’.

23 Lit. ‘into the uttermost (or ‘western’) deep’.

24 Or ‘the higher parts of’ (lit. ‘above’).

25 Most MSS om. ‘and cattle’.

26 Lit. ‘every moving thing’.

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