Pgs. 659-672
Ch. 32



XXXII. And when the last end of Mosheh the prophet was at hand, that he should be gathered from among the world, he said in his heart: I will not attest against this people with witnesses that taste of death in this world, behold, I attest against them with witnesses which do not taste of death in this world, and whose destination is to be renewed in the world to come. Isaiah the prophet, when he prophesied in the congregation of Israel, attributed hearing to the heavens, and attentiveness to the earth; because (in his case) earth was nearest and heaven more remote: but Mosheh the prophet, when he now prophesied in the congregation of Israel, attributed hearing to the earth, and attentiveness to the heavens; because (in his case) heaven was nearest and earth more remote; for so it is written, Attend, ye heavens, and I will speak; and hear, O earth, the words of my mouth. My doctrine shall smite the rebellious like heavy rain; but shall be enjoyed with pleasantness by those who receive instruction, as the dew: my words shall be like the downfalling rain of the wind that breathes upon the grass in the month of Marchesvan, and as the droppings of the latter rain which water the springing herbage of the earth in Nisan.

[JERUSALEM. When the end of Mosheh came that he should be removed from the world, he said: Behold, I testify in this world a thing which tasteth not of death; so will I attest against them the heavens and earth which taste not of death in this world, but whose end is to be consumed in the world that cometh. For so he explained, and said: Lift up your eyes to the heavens, and consider the earth beneath; for the heavens shall dissolve like smoke, and the earth fade away as a garment; but I have prepared to create new heavens and a new earth. Isaiah the prophet, when he prophesied in the congregation of Israel, because he was remote from the heavens and nearest the earth, attributed hearing to the heavens, and attention to the earth: for so be explaineth, and saith: Hear, O heavens, and listen, O earth; for the Word of the Lord hath spoken. Mosheh the prophet, &c. (as above.) The doctrine of my law shall be sweet to the children of Israel as the rain, the word Of my mouth will be received by them with pleasantness as the dew, as the wind which breathes upon the herb, and as the drops of the latter rain that descend and water the herbage of the ground in Nisan.]

Woe to the wicked who make memorial of the Holy Name with blasphemies. Wherefore Mosheh, who was the Doctor of Israel, would not permit himself to pronounce the Holy Name until he had dedicated his mouth at the beginning of his hymn with eighty and five letters, making twenty and one words, and afterwards be spake: In the Name of the Lord I invoke you, O house of Israel, to ascribe glory and greatness before our God. [JERUSALEM. Mosheh the prophet said: Woe to the wicked who make memorial of the Holy Name with blasphemies. For it is not possible even to one of the highest angels to utter that Name rightly until that they have said, Holy, Holy, Holy thrice. And from them did Mosheh learn not to utter that Name openly until he should have dedicated his mouth with twenty‑one words which consist of eighty-five letters;[1] and so explained he and said: Hear, ye heavens, and I will speak; for it is the Name of the Lord. Mosheh the prophet said: O people of Israel, I invoke you, in the Name of the Lord, to give glory, praise, and highest exaltation unto God.]

Mosheh the prophet said: When I ascended the mountain of Sinai, I beheld the Lord of all the worlds, the Lord, dividing the day into four portions; three hours employed in the law, three with judgment, three in making marriage bonds between man and woman, and appointing to elevate or to abase, arid three hours in the care of every created thing: for so it is written: The Mighty One whose works are perfect, for all His ways are judgment, a faithful God before whom no iniquity comes forth, pure and upright is He. [JERUSALEM. (The same words to) three hours, uniting the marriage yoke of the husband to the wife . . . . a faithful God and true; falsehood is not before Him; He is just and upright in judgment.]

The beloved children have corrupted their good works, a blemish is found upon them; a perverse generation which have altered their works; so shall the order of this world's judgment be altered upon them. [JERUSALEM. The children have corrupted their works, and not them only, but themselves also: they have so corrupted that the spot is upon them; a depraved and perverse generation which changeth its order of this world shall be changed upon it.]

Can you indeed so requite the Name of the Word of the Lord, O foolish people, and receive the law, yet not be made wise? Is He not your Father who bought[2] you, who created you and established you? [JER. Do you return this before the Lord, O people foolish and unwise? Is He not your Father who is in heaven, who bought you? He created and founded you.] Remember the days of old; consider the years of every generation; read the books of the law, and they will teach you, and the books of the prophets, and they will tell you. [JER. Be mindful of the days, the days of old, consider the years of one generation and another; ask your fathers who are greater in the law than you, and they will teach you, the sages, and they will tell you.] When the Most High made allotment of the world unto the nations which proceeded from the sons of Noach, in the separation of the writings and languages of the children of men at the time[3] of the division, He cast the lot among the seventy angels, the princes of the nations with whom is the revelation to oversee the city, even at that time He established the limits of the nations according to the sum of the number of the seventy souls of Israel who went down into Mizraim. [JER. When the Most High divided the nations by lot, and distinguished the languages of the children of men, He appointed the bounds of the peoples according to the number of the tribes of the Beni Israel.]

And when the holy people fell to the lot of the Lord of all the world, Michael opened his lips and said: Let the good portion of the Name of the Lord's Word be with Him. Gabriel opened his lips with thanksgivings, and said, Let the house of Jakob be the lot of His inheritance. [JER. Because the Lord's portion are His people, and the house of Jakob the lot of His inheritance.] He found them dwelling in the wilderness, in the solitude, the place of howling demons and thorns, the place of thirsting; He overspread them with His seven glorious clouds; He taught them His law; He kept them as the Shekinah keepeth the apple of His eye. [Jer. He found them wandering in a desert land, in the solitude of a howling wilderness; He threw over them clouds of glory; His Shekinah taught them the Ten Words, watched over them, and kept them as the apple of His eye.] As an eagle stirreth up and careth for his nest, and hovereth over his young, so did His Shekinah stir up the tents of Israel, and the shadow of His Shekinah overspread them; and as an eagle outstretcheth his wings over his young ones, beareth them and carrieth them upon his wings, so bare He them and carried them, and made them dwell upon the strong places of the land of Israel. [JER. As an eagle stirreth up his nest, and carefully spreadeth out his wings, and taketh and beareth them with the strength of his wings.] The Word of the Lord made them to dwell in His land, nor suffered any among them to be the followers of strange worship. [JER. The Lord alone caused them to dwell, and none were among them who served with strange worship.] He made them to dwell in the strong places of the land of Israel,

and gave them to eat of the goodly produce of His field, and nourished them with the honey of its fruits which grow even upon the rocks with the oil of its olive trees, and from branches (growing) out of the rocks. [JER. He made them ride upon the high places of the earth, and gave them to eat of royal delicacies, and nourished them with honey out of the rock, and with oil from their olives (growing) out of the flinty stone of the rock.] He gave them rich butter of kine from the spoil of their kings, and the fat of the firstlings of the sheep from the prey of their sultans, with the choice rams and goats of the flocks of Mathnan. Mosheh the prophet said: If the people of Israel will observe the precepts of the law, it is foretold that their wheat granary shall be like the kidneys of oxen, and that from one bunch of grapes shall come forth a kor of red wine. [JER. Tender oxen and choice flocks, goodly fatlings, rams bred in Batenaia, and goats, with the richest of the wheat. Mosheh the prophet said: If the children of Israel will observe the precepts of the law . . . . from one bunch they shall drink a cup of wine.]

But the house of Israel grew rich and wicked; they prospered much and possessed wealth, and forsook the worship of Eloah who created them, and provoked Him to anger who redeemed them. They moved Him to jealousy with strange worship, by their abominations they made Him angry. They sacrificed to idols, resembling devils, in whom there is no profit, to idols which they had not known, new gods lately made, with which your fathers had nothing to do; But the adorable Strong One who created you have you forgotten; of the word of Eloha who strengthened you so often[4] have you been forgetful. And when it was manifest before the Lord, He was wroth, provoked thereto by His beloved children who were called upon His Name son and daughters. [JER. But the house of Jeshuron ate and kicked; they became rich, and rebelled; they prospered, got wealth, and forsook the Word of God who had created them, and refused to worship the Almighty who had redeemed them. They provoked Him to anger with their idols, by their abominations they made Him wroth They sacrificed to demons in whom is no stability,[5] idols which they had not known, lately formed, which your fathers remembered not. The Almighty who created you ye have forgotten, and have forsaken the Word of God who gave you to be, and made you so many refuges. And it was manifest before the Lord, and He was angry, because the beloved children had provoked Him, even they who were beloved by Him as sons and daughters.] And He said, I will take away from them the favour of My countenance; it will be seen what will be the end; for they are a perverse generation, children who have not faith. They have made Me jealous by that which is not God, they have angered Me by their vanities: I also will provoke them to jealousy by a people which hath not been a people, by the foolish Babylonian people will I provoke them. [JER. And He said, I will surely turn away the favour of My countenance from them; I will see what will be in their latter end; for they are a perverse generation, children in whom is no faith. They have moved Me to jealousy by their idols in which there is nothing whatever, they have provoked Me by their abominations; but I also will move them to jealousy by a people which is not a people, by a foolish nation will I anger them.] For an east wind strong as fire shall go out before Me, and blaze in the might of My anger, and burn to the lowest hell; it shall consume the land with its produce, and set the foundations of the mountains in flame. [JER. For a fire shall come forth in the hour of My wrath, and burn to the lowest hell, devouring the earth and its fulness, and setting in flame the foundations of the hills.] And when they dwell in Babel they will serve their idols; for I have spoken in My Word to array calamities against them, the plague‑arrows of My vengeance to destroy them, I will make them go into captivity in Media and Elam, in the captivity of Babel, the house of Agag who are like demons gaping with famine, and to corpses devoured by birds, and to stricken evil spirits of the noon, to Lillin and to spirits big with evil. And the Javanaee (Greeks) who bite with their teeth like wild beasts will I send against them, and will shake them by the hand of the Syrians venomous as basilisks, the serpents of the dust. [JER. I have spoken in My Word to bring evil upon them, the arrows of My vengeance will I send among them: gaping with famine, devoured by unclean fowl, filled with evil spirits, even the teeth of the four kingdoms, which are like wild beasts,[6] will I send among them, with the poison of serpents, the reptiles of the earth.] A people who will come from beyond the land of Israel shall consume them with the stroke of the sword, and those who are left in the land of Israel will I throw into the terror of death, in the chambers here and there where they sleep; their young men shall perish, their maidens, their suck­lings, with their men and their elders. [JER. In the street the sword will devour them; in the chambers where they sleep, the terrors of death; their young men and maidens, their infants and aged men.] I have spoken in My Word to withhold from them My Holy Spirit; I will make them weak; as a man who reaps his field leaveth but one upon the ground, so will I abolish their memory from the book of the genealogy of mankind; [JER. I have spoken in My Word to bring wrath upon them, and to cause their memorial to fail from among men;] but for the wrath of the enemy, and that their oppressors would glorify themselves against Me, and say, Our hand hath taken vengeance upon our adversaries, and all this hath not been decreed by the Lord; for they are a people lost to good counsel and void of understanding. O that they were intelligent in the law, and that they understood what they will become in their latter end! How will one foe pursue a thousand of them, and two put ten thousand of them to flight, unless He who is their strength deliver them, and the Lord avenge them! [JER. But that the wrath of the enemy would wax strong, that they could not prevail against their foes; and that they may not say, Our hand hath avenged us on our adversaries, and it hath not been done by the Lord; for this people perish by evil counsels, and they are void of understanding. If Israel were but wise, learning the law they would understand what shall be in their latter end. When Israel was diligent in the law, and observed the commandments, one of them chased a thousand, and two of them put ten thousand to flight; but because they have sinned and vexed the Almighty to anger, He hath left them to the hand of their enemies.]

For the idols of the Gentiles are not as He who is the Strength of Israel; for the Strength of Israel, when they have sinned, bringeth punishment upon them; but when they stretch forth their hands in prayer, He answereth and delivereth them. But, the idols of the peoples of strange worships are of no use: but because we have provoked Him, and have not returned to His service, our adversaries are our witnesses and our judges. [JER. For the confidence of the nations is not as our confidence; but because we have sinned and provoked Him to anger, our adversaries are made our judges.] For the works of this people are like the works of the people of Sedom, and their evil counsels like those of the people of Amorah; their wicked thoughts are as serpents heads; bitter therefore to them is their punishment which maketh desolate. Behold as the bitterness of serpents when they come forth from their wines, (?) so shall be the bitter cup of the curse which they are to drink in the day of their punishment, and cruel as the head of asps. [JER. For the works of this people are like those of the people of Sedom, and their thoughts like those of the people of Amorah: their evil works make them desolate, and become bitter to them. For the poison of this people is like that Of serpents what time they drink wine, and their malice like the head of asps and cruel reptiles.] Are not their secret works all known before Me? Sealed and laid up Are they in My treasury! Vengeance lies before Me, and I will recompense them at the time when their foot shall move to the captivity; for the day of their destruction is coming near, and the evil which is prepared for them maketh haste. [JER. Is not this the cup of punishment, mixed and ordained for the wicked, sealed in My treasuries for the day of the great judgment? Vengeance is mine: I am He who repayeth; in the time when the foot of the righteous is moved; for the day of destruction for the wicked is nigh the fire of Gehinam. is prepared for them, and their punishment girdeth itself to come upon them.]

For the Word of the Lord adjudgeth in His mercy the jundgement of His people Israel, and for the evil He hath appointed upon His servants there shall be repentance before Him; for He knoweth that in the time when they have sinned the stroke of their enemies will be heavy upon them, and help have passed away from their hands, and the faithful will have failed with their good works and be scattered and forsaken. And the enemy will say, Where is the fear of Israel, their Strength in whom they confided, who ate the fat of their sacrifices, and drank the wine of their libations? Let Him now rise up and help you, let Him shield you by His Word. [JER. For the Lord Himself will adjudge the judgment of the people of the children of Israel, and comfort His righteous servants; for it is manifest before Him that the hand of the righteous will waver, and that they will be forsaken and cast down, with none to help or support them. For the Gentiles will say, Behold, the God of Israel is strong in whom they put their trust; they brought before Him the fat of their sacrifices, and the wine of their libations; let Him who (once) was over them as a shield rise up now and deliver them.]

When the Word of the Lord shall reveal Himself to redeem His people, He will say to all the nations: Behold now, that I am He who Am, and Was, and Will Be, and there is no other God beside Me: I, in My Word, kill and make alive; I smite the people of the Beth Israel, and I will heal them at the end of the days; and there will be none who can deliver them from My hand, Gog and his armies whom I have permitted to make war against them. [JER. See now that I in My Word am He, and there is no other God beside Me. I kill the living in this world, and make alive the dead in the world that cometh; I am He who smiteth, and I am He who healeth; and there is none who can deliver from My hand.] I have lifted My hand with an oath to heaven, and have said, As I exist, I will not abolish My oath for ever. If I whet my sword, as lightning it will prevail in the judgment of My hand. I will return retribution on them who afflict My people, and repay to their enemies the hire of their wickedness. I will make My arrows drunk with the blood of their slain, and the captivity of their hosts shall be the punishment of My people's foes. [JER. For I have uplifted My hand with an oath to heaven, and said, I live, and My Word subsisteth for ever: If I whet My sword as lightning, My right hand will prevail in judgment. I will render punishment upon the adversaries of My people, I will repay them for their evil deeds. I will make My arrows drunk with their blood, and My sword shall consume their flesh; with the blood of the destroyers of My people, their captives, and the chieftains of their hosts.]

Rejoice, ye nations, (and) ye people of Beth Israel; for the blood of His servants which was shed, He hath avenged. He hath kept (in mind) and returned just vengeance upon His adversaries, and by His Word will He make Atonement for His land, and for His people. [JER. Let the nations give praise before Him, let the people of Beth Israel glorify Him; for He bath made inquisition for the trouble of His righteous servants, and brought vengeance upon His enemies; for the sins of His people He smote the land; but He will make Atonement for the land, and for His people.]

And Mosheh came from the tabernacle of the house of instruction, and spake all the words of this hymn, in the hearing of the people, he and Jehoshua bar Nun. And Mosheh made an end of speaking all these words with all Israel, and said to them: Apply your heart to all the words with which I bear witness to you this day, that you may dictate them to your children, so that they may observe and do all the words of this law. For there is no vain word in the law, unless to them who transgress it; for it is your life, and by this word you will prolong days upon the land that you pass over Jordan to inherit. [JER. And Mosheh came and spake all the praise of the words of this hymn in the hearing of the people, be and Hoshea bar Nun. And Mosheh ended speaking all these words with all Israel, and said to them: Set your heart unto all the words with which I bear witness to you this day, and which you shall teach your children, that they may observe and do all the glorious words of this law. For it is not a vain word to you, because it is your life, and by this word you will multiply days upon the land that you pass over Jordan to inherit.]

And the Lord spake with Mosheh on the seventh of the month Adar, on the same day,

saying, It was when the Word of the Lord had said to him, Go up to this mount Ibraee,

the mountain of Nebo, and he thought in his heart, and said, Perhaps this up‑going will

be like that to Mount Sinai; and he said, I will go and sanctify the people; but the Word of

the Lord said to him, Not so at all, but, Go thou up and view the land of Kenaan, which I

have given to the children of Israel for an inheritance. And thou shalt sleep in the mountain

to which thou goest up, and be gathered to thy people, even thou, as Aharon thy brother hath slept in the mountain of Omanos, and hath been gathered unto his people. Mosheh at once opened his mouth in prayer, and said, Lord of all the world, I entreat that I may not be as a man who had one only son, who being in captivity, he went and redeemed him with great price; he taught him wisdom and art, espoused him to a wife, planted for him a royal bower, builded him a marriage house, prepared for him the bed, invited his companions, baked his bread, slew his victims, and mixed his wine; yet, when the time came for his son to make glad with his wife, and the guests were about to consecrate the feast; then was that man required to go to the house of judgment, before the king and be Punished with the judgment of death; neither would the delay to execute his sentence that he might see the happiness of his son. So have I laboured for this people; I have led them by Thy Word out of Mizraim, and builded for this people; I have taught them Thy law builded for them the tabernacle to Thy Name; but now that the time hath come to pass the Jordan, I am punished with death! Let it please Thee to withhold from me this sentence until I have passed the Jordan, to see the good of Israel before I die. The Lord of the world answered him, and said: Because thou didst prevaricate with My Word In the midst of the children of Israel, at the Waters of Contention at Rekem in the desert of Zin, and didst not sanctify Me among them; therefore thou mayest look over against it, but shalt not enter into the land that I give unto the children of Israel. [Jer. Because you were rebellios towards the Name of My Word, among the Beni Israel, at the Waters of Contention in Rekem in the desert of Zin; forasmuch as you did not sanctify Me in the midst of them, therefore thou mayest look over against it, but shalt not enter into the land which I give to the children of Israel.]

[1] The Hebrew text of verses 1-3, to the word shem inclusive

[2] Or, "possessed."

[3] "Age or generation." The dispersion at Babel

[4] Or, "who so often gave you refuges."

[5] Or, "subsistence."

[6] Dan. vii.