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  • The Biblical Antiquities of Philo, Chapter 23Philo 23
Andries Hendrik Potgieter Andries Pretorius FW Reitz General Louis Botha Gideon Jacobus Scheepers Jacobus Herculaas de la Rey Johanna Brandt Johannes Cornelius Lötter Koos De La Rey Pres MT Steyn Sarel Cilliers Siener van Rensburg

Debat oor Christendom en Godsdiens

The Biblical Antiquities of Philo

Or the history of philo from the beginning of the world to king david

Chapter 23.

Joshua's last speech, with the story of Abraham's vision and of the giving of the Law.

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p. 141

1. And Jesus the son of Naue ordered the people and divided unto them the land, being a mighty man of valour. And while yet the adversaries of Israel were in the land, the days of Jesus drew near that he should die, and he sent and called all Israel throughout all their land with their wives and their children, and said unto them: Gather yourselves together before the ark of the covenant of the Lord in Silo and I will make a covenant with you before I die.

Jos. 24

2. And when all the people were gathered together on the 16th day of the 3rd month before the face of the Lord in Silo with their wives and their children, Jesus said unto them: Hear, O Israel, behold I make with you the covenant of this law which the Lord ordained with our fathers in Oreb, and therefore tarry ye here this night and see what God will say unto me concerning You.

Num. 22:19

3. And as the people waited there that night, the Lord appeared unto Jesus in a vision and spake saying: According to all these words will I speak unto this people.

4. And Jesus came in the morning and assembled all the people and said unto them: Thus saith the Lord: One rock was there from whence I digged out your father, and the cutting of that rock brought forth two men, whose names were Abraham and Nachor, and out of the chiselling of that place were born two women whose names were Sara and Melcha. And they dwelled together beyond the river. And Abraham took Sara to wife and Nachor took Melcha.

Isa. 51:1, 51:2

5. And when the people of the land were led astray, every man after his own devices, Abraham believed in me and was not led aside after them. And I saved him out of the fire and took him and brought him over into all the land of Chanaan. And I spake unto him in a vision saying: Unto thy seed will I give this land. And he said unto me: Behold now thou hast given me a wife and she is barren. And how shall I have seed of that womb that is shut up?

p. 142

Gen. 15

6. And I said unto him: Take for me a calf of three years old and a she-goat of three years and a ram of three years, a turtledove and a pigeon. And he took them as I commanded him. And I sent a sleep upon him and compassed him about with fear, and I set before him the place of fire wherein the works of them that commit iniquity against me shall be avenged, and I showed him the torches of fire whereby the righteous which have believed in me shall be enlightened.(1)

Gen. 15:9
Gen. 15:12

7. And I said unto him: These shall be for a witness between me and thee that I will give thee seed of the womb that is shut up. And I will liken thee unto the dove, because thou hast received for me the city which thy sons shall (begin to) build in my sight. But the turtle-dove I will liken unto the prophets which shall be born of thee. And the ram will I liken unto the wise men which shall be born of thee and enlighten thy sons. But the calf I will liken unto the multitude of the peoples which shall be multiplied through thee. And the she-goat I will liken unto the women whose wombs I will open and they shall bring forth. These things shall be for a witness betwixt us that I will not transgress my words.

8. And I gave him Isaac and formed him in the womb of her that bare him, and commanded it that it should restore him quickly and render him unto me in the 7th month. And for this cause every woman that bringeth forth in the 7th month, her child shall live: because upon him did I call my glory, and showed forth the new age.

p. 143

9. And I gave unto Isaac Jacob and Esau, and unto Esau I gave the land of Seir for an heritage. And Jacob and his sons went down into Egypt. And the Egyptians brought your fathers low, as ye know, and I remembered your fathers, and sent Moses my friend and delivered them from thence and smote their enemies. 

10. And I brought them out with a high hand and led them through the Red Sea, and laid the cloud under their feet, and brought them out through the depth, and brought them beneath the mount Sina, and I bowed the heavens and came down, and I congealed the flame of the fire, and stopped up the springs of the deep, and impeded the course of the stars, and tamed the sound of the thunder, and quenched the fulness; of the wind, and rebuked the multitude of the clouds, and stayed their motions, and interrupted the storm of the hosts, that I should not break my covenant, for all things were moved at my coming down, and all things were quickened at my advent, and I suffered not my people to be scattered, but gave unto them my law, and enlightened them, that if they did these things they may live and have length of days and not die.

Ps. 18:9

11. And I have brought you into this land and given you vineyards. Ye dwell in cities which ye built not. And I have fulfilled the covenant which I spake unto your fathers.

12. And now if ye obey your fathers, I will set my heart upon you for ever, and will overshadow you, and your enemies shall no more fight against you, and your land shall be renowned throughout all the world and your seed be elect in the midst of the peoples, which shall say: Behold the faithful people; because they believed the Lord, therefore hath the Lord delivered them and planted them. And therefore will I plant you as a desirable vineyard and will rule you as a beloved flock, and I will charge the rain and the dew, and they shall satisfy you all the days of your life.

p. 144

13. And it shall be at the end that the lot of every one of you shall be in eternal life, both for you and your seed, and I will receive your souls and lay them up in peace, until the time of the age is fulfilled, and I restore you unto your fathers and your fathers unto you, and they shall know at your hand that it is not in vain that I have chosen you. These are the words that the Lord hath spoken unto me this night.

14. And all the people answered and said: The Lord is our God, and him only will we serve. And all the people made a great feast that day and a renewal(2) thereof for 28 days.


(1) 142:1 The vision in Gen. 15 is here the occasion of Abraham's receiving revelations of a future state. Compare the Slavonic Apocalypse of Abraham, in which future history is revealed to him at this time.

(2) 144:1 a renewal: innouationem. qu. έγκαινισμόν: Cf. 2 Chron. 30:23.