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Mardocheus remembereth and expoundeth his dream of the river and the two dragons.


HEN Mardocheus said, God hath done these things. 5 For I remember a dream which I saw concerning these matters, and nothing thereof hath failed.

6 A little fountain became a river, and there was light, and the sun, and much water: this river is Esther, whom the king married, and made queen.

7 And the two dragons are I and Aman.

8 And the nations were those that were assembled to destroy the name of the Jews:

9 And my nation is this Israel, which cried to God, and were saved for the Lord hath saved his people, and the Lord hath delivered us from all those evils, and God hath wrought signs and great wonders, which have not been done among the Gentiles.


10 Therefore hath he made two lots, one for the ple of God, and another for all the Gentiles. 11 And these two lots came at the hour, and time, and day of judgment, before God among all nations.

12 So God remembered his people, and justified his inheritance.

13 Therefore those days shall be unto them in the nonth Adar, the fourteenth and fifteenth day of the same month, with an assembly, and joy, and with gladness before God, according to the generations for ever among his people.

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2 In the second year of the reign of Artaxerxes the great, in the first day of the month Nisan, Mardocheus the son of Jairus, the son of Semel, the son of Cisai of the tribe of Benjamin, had a dream;

3 Who was a Jew, and dwelt in the city of Susa, a great man, being a servitor in the king's court.

4 He was also one of the captives, which Nabuchodonosor the king of Babylon carried from Jerusalem with Jechonias king of Judea; and this was his dream.

5 Behold, a noise of a tumult, with thunder, and earthquakes, and uproar in the land:

6 And behold, two great dragons came forth ready to|| fight, and their cry was great.

7 And at their cry all nations were prepared to battle, that they might fight against the righteous people.

8 And lo a day of darkness and obscurity, tribulation and anguish, affliction and great uproar, upon the earth.


9 And the whole righteous nation was troubled, fearing their own evils, and were ready to perish.

10 Then they cried unto God, and upon their cry, as it were from a little fountain, was made a great flood, even much water.

11 The light and the sun rose up, and the lowly were exalted, and devoured the glorious.

12 Now when Mardocheus, who had seen this dream, and what God had determined to do, was awake, he bare this dream in mind, and until night by all means was desirous to know it.



The conspiracy of the two eunuchs is discovered by Mardocheus, 5 for which he is entertained by the king, and rewarded.

batha and Tharra, the two eunuchs of the king, and ND Mardocheus took his rest in the court with Gakeepers of the palace.

2 And he heard their devices, and searched out their purposes, and learned that they were about to lay hands upon Artaxerxes the king; and so he certified the king of them.

3 Then the king examined the two eunuchs, and after that they had confessed it, they were strangled.

4 And the king made a record of these things, and Mardocheus also wrote thereof.

5 So the king commanded Mardocheus to serve in the court, and for this he rewarded him.

6 Howbeit Aman the son of Amadathus the Agagite, who was in great honour with the king, sought to molest Mardocheus and his people because of the two eunuchs of the king.


1 The copy of the king's letters to destroy the Jews. 8 The prayer of Mardocheus for them.

THE copy of the letters was this: The great king 40-
vernors that are under him from India unto Ethiopia, in
taxerxes writeth these things to the princes and go-
an hundred and seven and twenty provinces.

dominion over the whole world, not lifted up with pre-
2 After that I became lord over many nations, and had
sumption of my authority, but carrying myself always
continually in a quiet life, and making my kingdom peace-
with equity and mildness, I purposed to settle my subjects
peace which is desired of all men.
able, and open for passage to the utmost coasts, to renew

3 Now when I asked my counsellors how this might be
and was approved for his constant good will and stead-
brought to pass, Aman that excelled in wisdom among us,
fast fidelity, and had the honour of the second place in the

world there was scattered a certain malicious people, that 4 Declared unto us, that in all nations throughout the the commandments of kings, so as the uniting of our kinghad laws contrary to all nations, and continually despised doms, honourably intended by us, cannot go forward.

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5 Seeing then we undertsand that this people alone is continually in opposition unto all men, differing in the strange manner of their laws, and evil-affected to our state, working all the mischief they can, that our kingdom may not be firmly established:

6 Therefore have we commanded, that all they that are signified in writing unto you by Aman, who is ordained over the affairs, and is next unto us, shall all with their wives and children be utterly destroyed by the sword of their enemies, without all mercy and pity, the fourteenth day of the twelfth month Adar of this present year:

7 That they who of old and now also are malicious, may in one day with violence go into the grave, and so ever hereafter cause our affairs to be well settled, and without trouble.

8 Then Mardocheus thought upon all the works of the Lord, and made his prayer unto him,

9 Saying, O Lord, Lord, the King Almighty: for the whole world is in thy power, and if thou hast appointed to save Israel, there is no man that can gainsay thee:

10 For thou hast made heaven and earth, and all the wondrous things under the heaven.

11 Thou art Lord of all things, and there is no man that can resist thee, which art the Lord.

12 Thou knowest all things, and thou knowest, Lord, that it was neither in contempt nor pride, nor for any desire of glory, that I did not bow down to proud Aman.

13 For I could have been content with good will for the salvation of Israel to kiss the soles of his feet.

14 But I did this, that I might not prefer the glory of man above the glory of God: neither will I worship any but thee, O God, neither will I do it in pride.


15 And now, O Lord God and King, spare thy people for their eyes are upon us to bring us to nought; yea, they desire to destroy the inheritance, that hath been thine from the beginning.

16 Despise not the portion which thou hast delivered out of Egypt for thine own self.

17 Hear my prayer, and be merciful unto thine inheritance turn our sorrow into joy, that we may live, O Lord, and praise thy name and destroy not the mouths of them that praise thee, O Lord.

18 All Israel in like manner cried most earnestly unto the Lord, because their death was before their eyes. CHAPTER XIV.

The prayer of queen Esther for herself, and her people.

Q UEEN Esther also, being in fear of death, resorted

unto the Lord:

2 And laid away her glorious apparel, and put on the garments of anguish and mourning and instead of precious ointments, she covered her head with ashes and dung, and she humbled her body greatly, and all the places of her joy she filled with her torn hair.


3 And she prayed unto the Lord God of Israel, sayO my Lord, thou only art our King: help me, desolate woman, which have no helper but thee: 4 For my danger is in mine hand.

5 From my youth up I have heard in the tribe of my family, that thou, O Lord, tookest Israel from among all people, and our fathers from all their predecessors, for perpetual inheritance, and thou hast performed whatso

ver thou didst promise them.



6 And now we have sinned before thee: therefore has thou given us into the hands of our enemies,

7 Because we worshipped their gods: O Lord, thou art righteous.

8 Nevertheless it satisfieth them not, that we are in bitter captivity: but they have stricken hands with their idols,

9 That they will abolish the thing that thou with thy mouth hast ordained, and destroy thine inheritance, and stop the mouth of them that praise thee, and quench the glory of thy house, and of thine altar,

10 And open the mouths of the heathen to set forth the praises of the idols, and to magnify a fleshly king for ever. 11 O Lord, give not thy sceptre unto them that be nothing, and let them not laugh at our fall; but turn their device upon themselves, and make him an example, that hath begun this against us.

12 Remember, O Lord, make thyself known in time of our affliction, and give me boldness, O King of the nations, and Lord of all power.

13 Give me eloquent speech in my mouth before the lion turn his heart to hate him that fighteth against us, that there may be an end of him, and of all that are likeminded to him:

14 But deliver us with thine hand, and help me that am desolate, and which have no other helper but thee.

15 Thou knowest all things, O Lord; thou knowest that I hate the glory of the unrighteous, and abhor the bed of the uncircumcised, and of all the heathen.

16 Thou knowest my necessity: for I abhor the sign of my high estate, which is upon mine head in the days wherein I shew myself, and that I abhor it as a menstruous rag, and that I wear it not when I am private by myself.

17 And that thine handmaid hath not eaten at Aman's table, and that I have not greatly esteemed the king's feast, nor drunk the wine of the drink-offerings.

18 Neither had thine handmaid any joy since the day that I was brought hither to this present, but in thee, O Lord God of Abraham.

19 O thou mighty God above all, hear the voice of the forlorn, and deliver us out of the hands of the mischie vous, and deliver me out of my fear.


6 Esther cometh into the king's presence. 7 He looketh angrily, and she fainteth. 8 The king taketh her up and comforteth her.

AND upon the third day, when she had ende, and

prayer, she laid away her mourning garments, put on her glorious apparel.

2 And being gloriously adorned, after she had called upon God, who is the beholder and saviour of all things, she took two maids with her:

3 And upon the one she leaned, as carrying herself daintily;

4 And the other followed, bearing up her train.

5 And she was ruddy through the perfection of her beauty, and her countenance was cheerful and very amiable: but her heart was in anguish for fear.

6 Then having passed through all the doors, she stood before the king, who sat upon his royal throne, and was clothed with all his robes of majesty, all glittering with

gold and precious stones; and he was very




7 Then lifting up his countenance that shone with || majesty, he looked very fiercely upon her: and the queen fell down, and was pale, and fainted, and bowed herself upon the head of the maid that went before her.

8 Then God changed the spirit of the king into mildness, who in a fear leaped from his throne, and took her in his arms, till she came to herself again, and comforted her with loving words, and said unto her,

9 Esther, what is the matter? I am thy brother, be of good cheer:

10 Thou shalt not die, though our commandment be general come near.

il And so he held up his golden sceptre, and laid it upon her neck,

12 And embraced her, and said, Speak unto me. 13 Then said she unto him, I saw thee, my lord, as an angel of God, and my heart was troubled for fear of thy majesty.

14 For wonderful art thou, lord, and thy countenance s full of grace.

15 And as she was speaking, she fell down for faint


16 Then the king was troubled, and all his servants comforted her.


1 The letter of Artaxerxes, 10 wherein he taxeth Aman, 17 and revoketh the decree procured by Aman to destroy the Jews, 22 and commandeth the day of their deliverance to be kept holy.

HE great king Artaxerxes unto the princes and THE governors of an hundred and seven and twenty provinces, from India unto Ethiopia, and unto all our faithful subjects, greeting.

2 Many, the more often they are honoured with the great bounty of their gracious princes, the more proud they are waxen,

3 And endeavour to hurt not our subjects only, but not being able to bear abundance, do take in hand to practise also against those that do them good:

4 And take not only thankfulness away from among men, but also lifted up with the glorious words of lewd persons, that were never good, they think to escape the justice of God, that seeth all things, and hateth evil.

5 Oftentimes also fair speech of those that are put in trust to manage their friends' affairs, hath caused many that are in authority to be partakers of innocent blood, and hath enwrapped them in remediless calamities:

6 Beguiling with the falsehood and deceit of their lewd disposition the innocency and goodness of princes.

7 Now ye may see this, as we have declared, not so much by ancient histories, as ye may, if ye search what hath been wickedly done of late through the pestilent behaviour of them that are unworthily placed in au


Apocrypha. 8 And we must take care for the time to come, that our kingdom may be quiet and peaceable for all men, 9 Both by changing our purposes, and always judging things that are evident with more equal proceeding. 10 For Aman, a Macedonian, the son of Amadatha, being indeed a stranger from the Persian blood, and far distant from our goodness, and as a stranger received of


11 Had so far forth obtained the favour that we shew towards every nation, as that he was called our father, and was continually honoured of all men, as the next person unto the king.

12 But he, not bearing his great dignity, went about to deprive us of our kingdom and life:

13 Having by manifold and cunning deceits sought of us the destruction as well of Mardocheus, who saved our life, and continually procured our good, as also of blameless Esther, partaker of our kingdom, with their whole nation.

14 For by these means he thought, finding us destitute of friends, to have translated the kingdom of the Persians to the Macedonians.

15 But we find that the Jews, whom this wicked wretch hath delivered to utter destruction, are no evil-doers, but live by most just laws :

16 And that they be children of the most high and most mighty living God, who hath ordered the kingdom both unto us and to our progenitors in the most excellent

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20 And ye shall aid them, that even the same day, being the thirteenth day of the twelve month Adar, they may be avenged on them, who in the time of their afflic tion shall set upon them.

21 For Almighty God hath turned to joy unto them the day wherein the chosen people should have perished. 22 Ye shall therefore among your solemn feasts keep it an high day with all feasting: 23 That both now and hereafter there may be safety to us, and the well-affected Persians; but to those which do conspire against us, a memorial of destruction.

24 Therefore every city and country whatsoever, which shall not do according to these things, shall be destroyed without mercy, with fire and sword, and shall be made not only unpassable for men, but also most hateful to

wild beasts and fowls for ever.



CHAPTER I. 2 To whom God sheweth himself, 4 and wisdom herself. 6 An evil speaker cannot lie hid. 12 We procure our own destruction 13 For God created not death.

hereafter as though we had never been: for the breath in our nostrils is as smoke, and a little spark in the moving of our heart:

3 Which being extinguished, our body shall be turn

LOVE righteousness, ye that be judges of the earthed into ashes, and our spirit shall vanish as the soft air, think of the Lord with a good (heart,) and in simplicity of heart seek him.

2 For he will be found of them that tempt him not;

and sheweth himself unto such as do not distrust him.

3 For froward thoughts separate from God: and his power, when it is tried, reproveth the unwise.

4 For into a malicious soul wisdom shall not enter; nor dwell in the body that is subject unto sin.

5 For the holy spirit of discipline will flee deceit, and remove from thoughts that are without understanding, and will not abide when unrighteousness cometh in.

6 For wisdom is a loving spirit; and will not acquit a blasphemer of his words: for God is witness of his reins, and a true beholder of his heart, and a hearer of his tongue.

7 For the Spirit of the Lord filleth the world: and that which containeth all things, hath knowledge of the


8 Therefore he that speaketh unrighteous things cannot be hid neither shall vengeance, when it punisheth, pass by him.

9 For inquisition shall be made into the counsels of the ingodly and the sound of his words shall come unto the ord for the manifestation of his wicked deeds.

10 For the ear of jealousy heareth all things: and the noise of murmurings is not hid.

11 Therefore beware of murmuring, which is unprofitab; and refrain your tongue from backbiting: for there is no word so secret, that shall go for nought: and the mouth that belieth, slayeth the soul.

12 Seek not death in the error of your life: and pull not upon yourselves destruction with the works of your


13 For God made not death: neither hath he pleasure in the destruction of the living.

14 For he created all things, that they might have their being: and the generations of the world were healthful; and there is no poison of destruction in them, nor the kingdom of death upon the earth:

15 (For righteousness is immortal :)

16 But ungodly men with their works and words called it to them for when they thought to have it their friend, they consumed to nought, and made a covenant with it, because they are worthy to take part with it.


1 The wicked think this life short, 5 and of no other after this. 6 Therefore they will take their pleasure in this, 10 and conspire against the just. 21 What that is which doth blind them.


OR the ungodly said, reasoning with themselves, but not aright, Our life is short and tedious, and in the death of a man there is no remedy: neither was there any man known to have returned from the grave.

4 And our name shall be forgotten in time, and no man shall have our works in remembrance, and our life shall pass away as the trace of a cloud, and shall be dis

persed as the mist that is driven away with the beams of the sun, and overcome with the heat thereof.

5 For our time is a very shadow that passeth away; and after our end there is no returning: for it is fast sealed, so that no man cometh again.

6 Come on therefore, let us enjoy the good things that are present: and let us speedily use the creatures like as in youth.

7 Let us fill ourselves with costly wine and ointments: and let no flower of the spring pass by us:

8 Let us crown ourselves with rose-buds, before they be withered.

9 Let none of us go without his part of our voluptuousness: let us leave tokens of our joyfulness in every place: 5 for this is our portion, and our lot is this.


10 Let us oppress the poor righteous man, let us not spare the widow, nor reverence the ancient gray hairs of the aged.

11 Let our strength be the law of justice: for that which is feeble is found to be nothing worth.

12 Therefore let us lie in wait for the righteous; be cause he is not for our turn, and he is clean contrary to our doings: he upbraideth us with our offending the law, and objecteth to our infamy the transgressions of our education.

he calleth himself the child of the Lord. 13 He professeth to have the knowledge of God: and

14 He was made to reprove our thoughts.

is not like other men's, his ways are of another fashion. 15 He is grievous unto us even to behold: for his life

staineth from our ways as from filthiness: he pronounceth 16 We are esteemed of him as counterfeits: he ab the end of the just to be blessed, and maketh his boast that God is his father.

17 Let us see if his words be true: and let us prove what shall happen in the end of him.

18 For if the just man be the son of God, he will help him, and deliver him from the hand of his enemies.

19 Let us examine him with despitefulness and torture, that we may know his meekness, and prove his pa


20 Let us condemn him with a shameful death: for by his own saying he shall be respected.

21 Such things they did imagine, and were deceived: for their own wickedness hath blinded them.

22 As for the mysteries of God, they knew them not: neither hoped they for the wages of righteousness, nor discerned a reward for blameless souls.

23 For God created man to be immortal, and made him to be an image of his own eternity.

24 Nevertheless, through envy of the devil came death

2 For we are born at all adventure: and we shall be into the world: and they that do hold of his side do find it

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The godly are happy in their death, 5 and in their troubles: The wicked are not, nor their children. 13 But they that are pure, are happy, though they have no children: 16 For the adulterer and his seed shall perish


UT the souls of the righteous are in the hand of God, and there shall no torment touch them. 2 In the sight of the unwise they seemed to die: and their departure is taken for misery,

3 And their going from us to be utter destruction: but they are in peace.

4 For though they be punished in the sight of men, yet is their hope full of immortality.

5 And having been a little chastised, they shall be greatly rewarded: for God proved them, and found them worthy for himself.

6 As gold in the furnace hath he tried them, and received them as a burnt-offering.

7 And in the time of their visitation, they shall shine, and run to and fro like sparks among the stubble.

8 They shall judge the nations, and have dominion over the people, and their Lord shall reign for ever.

9 They that put their trust in him shall understand the truth and such as be faithful in love shall abide with him: for grace and mercy is to his saints, and he hath care for his elect.

10 But the ungodly shall be punished according to their own imaginations, which have neglected the righteous, and forsaken the Lord.

11 For whoso despiseth wisdom and nurture, he is miserable, and their hope is vain, their labours unfruitful, and their works unprofitable :

12 Their wives are foolish, and their children wicked: 13 Their offspring is cursed. Wherefore blessed is the barren that is undefiled, which hath not known the sinful bed: she shall have fruit in the visitation of souls.

14 And blessed is the eunuch, which with his hands hath wrought no iniquity, nor imagined wicked things against God: for unto him shall be given the special gift of faith, and an inheritance in the temple of the Lord more acceptable to his mind.

15 For glorious is the fruit of good labours: and the root of wisdom shall never fall away.

16 As for the children of adulterers, they shall not come to their perfection, and the seed of an unrighteous

bed shall be rooted out.

17 For though they live long, yet shall they be nothing regarded and their last age shall be without honour 18 Or, if they die quickly, they have no hope, neither comfort in the day of trial.

19 For horrible is the end of the unrighteous generation.

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3 But the multiplying brood of the ungodly shall not thrive, nor take deep rooting from bastard slips, nor lay any fast foundation.

4 For though they flourish in branches for a time; yet standing not fast, they shall be shaken with the wind, and through the force of winds they shall be rooted out.

5 The imperfect branches shall be broken off, their fruit unprofitable, not ripe to eat, yea, meet for nothing. 6 For children begotten of unlawful beds, are witnesses of wickedness against their parents in their trial. 7 But though the righteous be prevented with death, yet shall he be at rest.

8 For honourable age is not that which standeth in length of time, nor that is measured by number of years. 9 But wisdom is the gray hair unto men, and an unspotted life is old age.

10 He pleased God, and was beloved of him: so that living among sinners he was translated.

11 Yea, speedily was he taken away, lest that wickedness should alter his understanding, or deceit beguile his soul.

12 For the bewitching of naughtiness doth obscure things that are honest; and the wandering of concupiscence doth undermine the simple mind.

13 He, being made perfect in a short time, fulfilled a long time:

14 For his soul pleased the Lord: therefore hasted he to take him away from among the wicked.

15 This the people saw, and understood it not, neither laid they up this in their minds, That his grace and mercy is with his saints, and that he hath respect unto his


16 Thus the righteous that is dead shall condemn the ungodly which are living; and youth that is soon perfected, the many years and old age of the unrighteous.

17 For they shall see the end of the wise, and shall not understand what God in his counsel hath decreed of him, and to what end the Lord hath set him in safety.

18 They shall see him, and despise him; but God shall laugh them to scorn: and they shall hereafter be a vile carcass, and a reproach among the dead for evermore.

19 For he shall rend them, and cast them down headlong, that they shall be speechless; and he shall shake them from the foundation; and they shall be utterly laid waste, and be in sorrow; and their memorial shall perish.

20 And when they cast up the accounts of their sins, they shall come with fear and their own iniquities shall convince them to their face.


The wicked shall wonder at the godly, 4 and confess their error, 5 and the vanity of their lives. 15 God will reward the just, 17 and war against the wicked.

HEN shall the righteous man stand in great boldness

Tbefore the face on such as have afflicted him, and

made no account of his labours.

fear, and shall be amazed at the strangeness of his salva2 When they see it, they shall be troubled with terrible tion, so far beyond all that they looked for.

shall say within themselves, This was he, whom we had 3 And they repenting and groaning for anguish of spirit sometimes in derision, and a proverb of reproach :

4 We fools accounted his life madness, and his end to be without honour:

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