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Main Page The Childhood of Jesus CYOU-87 Chapter

Chapter 87. – Mary as a model of female humility. The song of praise and thanks by Joseph and his sons. The positive effect on the three idolatrous priests.

87,1. And Mary, who never spoke much and unlike most women never insisted on having the last word, was satisfied in her heart with Joseph's short and simple reassurance.

87,2. She then went to rest, and Joseph consecrated her to the Lord in his heart.

87,3. But Joseph went to his sons and said to them: "Children, the evening is splendid and beautiful; let us go outside!

87,4. There, in the great holy temple of God, we shall strike up a song of praise and shall thank the Lord for all the infinite blessings he has bestowed on us and our fathers since the beginning of the world!"

87,5. Joseph's sons immediately dropped everything and followed their father.

87,6. And he led them up to a small unobstructed hill about a hundred paces away from the villa as part of Joseph's land, with a height of some twenty fathoms.

87,7. But the three priests noticed the move and believed that the gods were going to Olympus for the night, to hold a general council with all the gods.

87,8. And so they quickly left their rooms and crept very quietly and furtively after Joseph.

87,9. Having reached the hill, they eavesdropped under a dense leafy fig-tree, in an attempt to overhear what the supposed gods at Olympus would decide.

87,10. But how astonished they became among themselves, when they heard the supposedly pre-eminent gods worship and sing praises to one God with power and fervour.

87,11. And the following passages of a psalm of David had a particularly strong effect on them, which were as follows:

87,12. "Lord, you have been our dwelling place in all generations. Before the mountains were brought forth, before You had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting, You are God.

87,13. You turn man back to dust; and say, 'Turn back, O children of men!'

87,14. For a thousand years in Your sight are but like yesterday when it is past, and like a watch in the night.

87,15. You sweep them away; they are like sleepers; they are like short lived grass in the morning.

87,16. In the morning it flourishes, and fades; by evening it is withered and dry.

87,17. For we are consumed by Your anger, and by Your wrath are we terrified!

87,18. You have set our iniquities before You, our secret sins in the light of Your countenance!

87,19. For all our days pass away in Your wrath; we spend our years like a tale that is told.

87,20. The days of our years are seventy; or if, because of strength, they are eighty years, yet their pride is but trouble and wretchedness; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away!

87,21. Who knows the power of Your anger? According to Your fear, so is Your wrath.

87,22. So teach us to number our days, that we may get a heart of wisdom.

87,23. Return, O Lord! How long? And relent concerning Your servants!

87,24. O satisfy us in the morning with Your loving kindness; that we may rejoice and be glad all our days!

87,25. Make us glad as many days as You have afflicted us, and as many years as we have seen evil!

87,26. Let Your work be visible to Your servants, and Your glory to their children!

87,27. And let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us; and establish the work of our hands upon us; O prosper it, the work of our hands!"

87,28. When the three had heard these songs very clearly, they promptly returned to their room.

87,29. And one said to the other two: "Indeed, those who pray like this to a God, and even acknowledge His wrath and ire over them, cannot be Gods!"

87,30. And another one said: "That would be the least of it, but that this prayer has touched our souls is where the problem lies!

87,31. Be quiet now; the worshippers are coming back! Tomorrow we will assess this matter more seriously, but for now be quiet, for they are coming!"

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