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Chapter 35 - Occasion with the inheritance-seeking Pharisees and the old man’s son-in-law.
35,1. When they entered the dwelling they immediately picked up David‘s Psalter and with the first throw opened it at Psalm 37 and the elders starts to read:
35,2. “Fret not thyself because of evildoers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity. For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb. Trust in the Lord, and do good: so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed. Delight thyself also in the Lord: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him: and he shall bring it to pass. And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgment as the noonday.
35,3. Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass. Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil. For evildoers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon the Lord, they shall inherit the earth.
35,4. For yet a little while, and the wicked shall not be: yea, thou shalt diligently consider his place, and it shall not be. But the meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace. The wicked plotteth against the just, and gnasheth upon him with his teeth. The Lord shall laugh at him: for he seeth that his day is coming. The wicked have drawn out the sword, and have bent their bow, to cast down the poor and needy, and to slay such as be of upright conversation. Their sword shall enter into their own heart, and their bows shall be broken.
35,5. A little that a righteous man hath is better than the riches of many wicked. For the arms of the wicked shall be broken: but the Lord upholdeth the righteous. The Lord knoweth the days of the upright: and their inheritance shall be for ever. They shall not be ashamed in the evil time: and in the days of famine they shall be satisfied. But the wicked shall perish, and the enemies of the Lord shall be as the fat of lambs: they shall consume; into smoke shall they consume away. The wicked borroweth, and payeth not again: but the righteous sheweth mercy, and giveth.
35,6. After this verse, one Pharisee rises, saying to the elder reading: 'What kind of silly stuff are your reading? Don‘t you notice that this all concerns us from a bad angle whilst from the good angle none other than the carpenter‘s son? This is quite a damning incrimination of us, yet you are reading as lightly and cheerfully as if it were some written praise of us from the Jerusalem High Priest!'
35,7. Says the elder: 'Friend, it will do us no harm if we are therewith lit up to each other a little more brightly than we are! It is better that we lit up a little in front of each other than be lit up a little later naked before the whole world as deceivers of the people, despised and abandoned by everyone. Because it depends in the final analysis on God alone as to how long in our current ways and means we remain standing un-exposed, and hence I am going to continue reading this most extraordinary Psalm!'
35,8. Says several: 'You are right, do so!'
35,9. And the elder continues reading:
35,10. 'For such as are blessed by Him shall inherit the earth; and they who are cursed by Him shall be cut off.”
35,11. Here the incensed Pharisee asks again: 'Who are the blessed, and who the cursed?'
35,12. Says the Elder: 'That we are not the blessed ones can be grasped with the hands, with the rising persecution through the Romans! For were we the blessed then God would not have set down such plague in our promised land! Everything else you can easily work out yourself. But I shall continue to read,
35,13. The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord, and he delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the Lord upholdeth him with his hand. I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen ten righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread. He is ever merciful, and lendeth; and his seed is blessed.
35,14. Depart from evil, and do good; and dwell for evermore. For the Lord loveth judgment, and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever: but the seed of the wicked shall be cut off. The righteous shall inherit the land, and dwell therein for ever.
35,15. The mouth of the rigious speaketh wisdom, and his tongue talketh of judgment. The law of his God is in his heart; none of his steps shall slide. The wicked watcheth the righteous, and seeketh to slay him. The Lord will not leave him in his hand, nor condemn him when he is judged.
35,16. Wait on the Lord, and keep his way, and he shall exalt thee to inherit the land: when the wicked are cut off, thou shalt see it.
35,17. I have seen the wicked in great power, and spreading himself like a green by tree. Yet he passed away, and, lo, he was not: yea, I sought him, but he could not be found.
35,18. Mark the perfect man, and behold the upright: for the end of that man is peace. But the transgressors shall be destroyed together: the end of the wicked shall be cut off. But the salvation of the righteous is of the Lord: he is their strength in the time of trouble. And the Lord shall help them, and deliver them: he shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in him.
35,19. As the elder finished the Psalm, the Pharisee furiously assails him, shouting: 'Old donkey you, do you not notice that we are described as the wicked in this Psalm, whilst those on Jesus' side as the righteous? Do you not notice that we shall be cut off, whilst they shall inherit the land? Are not we the ones trying to kill him, the righteous one, whilst God preserves him? This is a nice Psalm for us!'
35,20. Says the Elder: 'I did not write it! It is in the Book; and if we remain as we are we shall also have to bear it in actuality! Do you understand such, and God‘s power?!'
35,21. Says another: 'This thing I understand better than all of you! Our friend Roban was bound to read this Psalm; this was effected by the carpenter son‘s most inexplicable magic powers of course! For he was able to heal with one word the entire family, where we had only just heretofore sought our gold and silver fortune then he is equally able to force us to read only such Psalms which testify as forcibly against us as the testimony once against David‘s foes.
35,22. Beside this, the old Joseph is supposed to definitely be descended from David‘s lineage, and Jesus also is referred to now as Son of David as Joseph‘s second wife Mary also is supposed to be a descendant of that same tribe, for which reason the old Joseph who has always been a clever fox most probably caused his son secretly to learn all sorts of magical powers, so that the latter would confound the superstitious Romans and Greeks thereafter to then introduce himself as a son of Jupiter or Apollo, thereupon the Romans would have to indisputably proclaim and elevate him as their emperor! And if those lords residing in Rome are as blind as these wielding power over Asia, whom Jesus already has in his bag to so speak, then he may not be failing in a short time to prescribe laws to the Romans - and we are then all done for!'
35,23. Says another: 'surely it ought to be possible to put a stop to such undertaking through secret correspondence with the emperor!'
35,24. Says the first: 'You shall find it hard to put a stop to one who sees everything with his magical sight that you think ever so secretly. Who else but he frightened us with the thunderclap on the way home, as he is sure to have heard what we said against him? And who else but he caused us to read the Psalm so severely condemning us? And why? Because he was sure to know what we intended undertaking against him! Go and sit at the writing table and try a secret writing to the Emperor - and I vouch for it that you shall either not be able to write one word down, or you shall be forced to depict a dreadful self-incrimination through his inexplicable secret magic power!
35,25. On top of that our chief Jairus is now taken in by him body and soul for twice awakening his daughter from death and backs him up in whatever the former wants - and hence we shall also accomplish nothing against him in Jerusalem. In short, we are nailed up on all sides, and tied up and cannot move against him. The best thing still it seems to me is to grin and bear it or declare ourselves fully as his disciples, for we can otherwise do nothing worthwhile against him, since we are not so much as able to think it without him finding out instantly in the most penetrating way.'
35,26. Says old Roban: 'I am of the same opinion! We have only once option: that we maintain complete neutrality, or we all embrace his doctrine and do as he advises and commands us for one cannot kick against this prickle.'
35,27. Say all: 'We shall maintain ourselves completely neutral, that shall be the best; for therewith we shall alienate neither Rome nor Jerusalem, and therein lies our prudence along which we must order our lives.'
35,28. After this all go to take their rest and each is secretly pondering what to do for his part.
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