Rick Brannan translation.
Shepherd of Hermas (considered secondary scripture by the early church, see Muratorian Cannon)
4.1 Hermas and the Beast
22.1 What I saw, brothers, twenty days after the previous vision, was a type of the tribulation which was coming. 2 I was going into the country by the Campanian Way. It is ⌊just over a mile⌋ 2 from the public road and the place is easily reached. 3 Therefore, walking by myself I desired that the Lord complete the revelations and the visions which he made known to me through his holy church, that he might strengthen me and give repentance to his servants who had stumbled, that his great and glorious name might be glorified, because he considered me worthy to show to me his wonderful things. 4 And I was glorifying and giving thanks to him when the sound of a voice answered me, “Do not be of two minds, Hermas.” I began to reason with myself and say, “How can I be of two minds having been so firmly established by the Lord and having seen his glorious deeds?” 5 And I approached a little further, brothers, and behold, I saw dust like into heaven, and I began to say to myself, “Maybe cattle are coming and raising dust?” And it was about ⌊an eighth of a mile⌋ 4 from me. 6 As the dust grew greater and greater, I suspected it was something supernatural. The sun shone a little, and behold, I saw a large beast like some sea monster and fiery locusts were coming out of its mouth. And the beast was about one hundred feet in length and its head was like a ceramic jar. 7 And I began to weep and to ask the Lord that he rescue me from it, and I remembered the word which I had heard, “Do not be of two minds, Hermas.” 8 Therefore brothers, having put on the faith of the Lord and remembering what great things he taught me, taking courage I gave myself over to the beast. And thus the beast came with a whoosh as though it was able to destroy a city. 9 I came near it, and the enormous sea monster stretched itself out on the ground. And ⌊it only stuck out its tongue⌋, 7 and did not move at all until I had passed it by. 10 And the beast had four colors upon its head: black, then red as fire and blood, then gold, then white.
4.2 Hermas Tells of his Encounter
23.1 And after I passed the beast and went on ahead about thirty feet, behold, a young woman met me, adorned as if coming out from a bridal chamber, completely in white and white sandals, veiled to the forehead, and her head covering was with a turban, and her hair was white. 2 I knew from the previous visions that she was the church and I became more cheerful. She greeted me saying, “Greetings, my man!” and I greeted her in return, “Lady, greetings!” 3 Answering me she said, “Did nothing meet you?” I said to her, “Lady, an enormous beast able to destroy nations, but by the power of the Lord and his great compassion I escaped it!” 4 “You escaped well,” she said, “because you cast your anxiety upon God and opened your heart to the Lord, believing that you are able to be saved by nothing except by the great and glorious name. Because of this, the Lord sent his angel who is over the beasts, whose name is Thegri, and he shut its mouth that it might not destroy you. You have escaped great tribulation because of your faith, and because having seen such an enormous beast, you were not double-minded. 5 Therefore go and make known his great acts to the elect of the Lord, and tell them that this beast is a type of the great tribulation which is coming. Therefore if you prepare ahead of time and repent with your whole heart to the Lord, you will be able to escape it, if your heart becomes pure and blameless, and the remaining days of your life you serve the Lord blamelessly. Cast your anxieties upon the Lord, and he will set them straight. 6 Trust in the Lord, you double-minded ones, because he is able to do all things. He turns his wrath away from you and sends out torments to you who are double-minded. Woe to those who hear these words and who disobey! It would be more desirable for them to not have been born.”
4.3 About the Four Colors
24.1 I asked her about the four colors which the beast had on its head. And answering me she said, “Again you are meddlesome about such things?” “Yes,” I said, “Lady, explain to me what these things are.” 2 “Listen,” she said, “the black, this represents the world in which you dwell. 3 And the color of fire and blood means that it is necessary for this world to be destroyed by blood and fire. 4 And the gold part represents you, who have escaped this world, for just as the gold is tested by the fire and becomes useful, so also you who dwell among them are tested. Therefore those who stay and ⌊pass through the flames⌋ will be purified by the flames, just as the gold throws off its slag, so also you will throw off all sorrow and distress and you will be purified and will be made useful for the construction of the tower. 5 And the white part is the age which is coming, in which the elect of God will dwell because those chosen by God for eternal life are without fault and pure. 6 Therefore you do not stop speaking to the ears of the saints. You also have the example of the great tribulation which is coming, but if you so desire, nothing will happen. Remember what was written beforehand.” 7 Saying these things, she departed and I did not see to what place she departed, because a cloud came and I turned ⌊around in fear⌋, thinking that the beast was coming.
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Last edited by njd83 on Sat Jun 03, 2017 7:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Different Translation: Lightfoot:
1. The fourth vision which I saw, brethren, twenty days after the former vision which came unto me, for a type of the impending tribulation. 2I was going into the country by the Campanian Way. From the high road, it is about ten stades; and the place is easy for travelling. 3While then I am walking alone, I entreat the Lord that He will accomplish the revelations and the visions which He showed me through His holy Church, that He may strengthen me and may give repentance to His servants which have stumbled, that His great and glorious Name may be glorified, for that He held me worthy that He should show me His marvels. 4And as I gave glory and thanksgiving to Him, there answered me as it were the sound of a voice, ‘Be not of doubtful mind, Hermas.’ I began to question in myself and to say, ‘How can I be of doubtful mind, seeing that I am so firmly founded by the Lord, and have seen glorious things?’ 5And I went on a little, brethren, and behold, I see a cloud of dust rising as it were to heaven, and I began to say within myself, ‘Can it be that cattle are coming, and raising a cloud of dust?’ for it was just about a stade from me. 6As the cloud of dust waxed greater and greater, I suspected that it was something supernatural. Then the sun shone out a little, and behold, I see a huge beast like some sea-monster, and from its mouth fiery locusts issued forth. And the beast was about a hundred feet in length, and its head was as it were of pottery. 7And I began to weep, and to entreat the Lord that He would rescue me from it. And I remembered the word which I had heard, ‘Be not of doubtful mind, Hermas.’ 8Having therefore, brethren, put on the faith of the Lord and called to mind the mighty works that He had taught me, I took courage and gave myself up to the beast. Now the beast was coming on with such a rush, that it might have ruined a city. 9I come near it, and, huge monster as it was, it stretcheth itself on the ground, and merely put forth its tongue, and stirred not at all until I had passed by it. 10And the beast had on its head four colours; black, then fire and blood colour, then gold, then white.
2. Now after I had passed the beast, and had gone forward about thirty feet, behold, there meeteth me a virgin arrayed as if she were going forth from a bride-chamber, all in white and with white sandals, veiled up to her forehead, and her head-covering consisted of a turban, and her hair was white. 2I knew from the former visions that it was the Church, and I became more cheerful. She saluteth me, saying, ‘Good morrow, my good man’; and I saluted her in turn, ‘Lady, good morrow.’ 3She answered and said unto me, ‘Did nothing meet thee?’ I say unto her, ‘Lady, such a huge beast, that could have destroyed whole peoples: but, by the power of the Lord and by His great mercy, I escaped it.’ 4‘Thou didst escape it well,’ saith she, ‘because thou didst cast thy care upon God, and didst open thy heart to the Lord, believing that thou canst be saved by nothing else but by His great and glorious Name. Therefore the Lord sent His angel, which is over the beasts, whose name is Segri, and shut its mouth, that it might not hurt thee. Thou hast escaped a great tribulation by reason of thy faith, and because, though thou sawest so huge a beast, thou didst not doubt in thy mind. 5Go therefore, and declare to the elect of the Lord His mighty works, and tell them that this beast is a type of the great tribulation which is to come. If therefore ye prepare yourselves beforehand, and repent (and turn) unto the Lord with your whole heart, ye shall be able to escape it, if your heart be made pure and without blemish, and if for the remaining days of your life ye serve the Lord blamelessly. Cast your cares upon the Lord and He will set them straight. 6Trust ye in the Lord, ye men of doubtful mind, for He can do all things, yea, He both turneth away His wrath from you, and again He sendeth forth His plagues upon you that are of doubtful mind. Woe to them that hear these words and are disobedient; it were better for them that they had not been born.’
3. I asked her concerning the four colours, which the beast had upon its head. Then she answered me and said, ‘Again thou art curious about such matters.’ ‘Yes, lady,’ said I, ‘make known unto me what these things are.’ 2‘Listen,’ said she; ‘the black is this world in which ye dwell; 3and the fire and blood colour showeth that this world must perish by blood and fire; 4and the golden part are ye that have escaped from this world. For as the gold is tested by the fire and is made useful, so ye also [that dwell in it] are being tested in yourselves. Ye then that abide and pass through the fire will be purified by it. For as the gold loses its dross, so ye also shall cast away all sorrow and tribulation, and shall be purified, and shall be useful for the building of the tower. 5But the white portion is the coming age, in which the elect of God shall dwell; because the elect of God shall be without spot and pure unto life eternal. 6Wherefore cease not thou to speak in the ears of the saints. Ye have now the symbolism also of the tribulation which is coming in power. But if ye be willing, it shall be nought. Remember ye the things that are written beforehand.’ 7With these words she departed, and I saw not in what direction she departed; for a noise was made; and I turned back in fear, thinking that the beast was coming.