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Apocalypse of Abraham

First to Second Century A.D.

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Martin McNamara writes: "The apocalypse is found in chapters 9-32. In it God narrates to Abraham the fall of man and the idolatry of Abraham's own descendants. Thus their infidelity will bring about the judgment. The end is said to be near. The pagan nations are soon to be punished or destroyed. The trumpet will sound and God's elect one (the Messiah) will come to gather together his own people and burn his enemies with fire." (Intertestamental Literature, p. 84)

James Charlesworth writes: "Extant only in Old Slavonic manuscripts, the Apocalypse of Abraham was edited best by N. Tikhonravov (Pamiatniki otrechennoi russkoi literatury, St. Petersburg, 1863. Vol. 1, pp. 32-53) and translated into English by G. H. Box, assisted by J. I. Landsman (The Apocalypse of Abraham, London: S.P.C.K.; New York: Macmillan, 1919). This interesting composition, which has not received the attention it deserves, probably dates from A.D. 80-100 and was written in a Semitic language. It is an haggadic midrash upon Genesis 15:9-17, beginning with a humorous account of Abraham's conversion from idolatry, chapters 1-8, and concluding with the apocalypse itself, 9-32. One of the most intriguing features is the 'Christian' interpolation in chapter 29, which is appreciably different from the Christianity of the New Testament." (The Pseudepigrapha and Modern Research, pp. 68-69)

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