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2 Esdras 5:1-13 Revised Standard Version (RSV)

Signs of the End

“Now concerning the signs: behold, the days are coming when those who dwell on earth shall be seized with great terror,[a] and the way of truth shall be hidden, and the land shall be barren of faith. And unrighteousness shall be increased beyond what you yourself see, and beyond what you heard of formerly. And the land which you now see ruling shall be waste and untrodden,[b] and men shall see it desolate. But if the Most High grants that you live, you shall see it thrown into confusion after the third period;[c]

and the sun shall suddenly shine forth at night,
    and the moon during the day.
Blood shall drip from wood,
    and the stone shall utter its voice;
the peoples shall be troubled,
    and the stars shall fall.[d]

And one shall reign whom those who dwell on earth do not expect, and the birds shall fly away together; and the sea of Sodom shall cast up fish; and one whom the many do not know shall make his voice heard by night, and all shall hear his voice.[e] There shall be chaos also in many places, and fire shall often break out, and the wild beasts shall roam beyond their haunts, and menstruous women shall bring forth monsters. And salt waters shall be found in the sweet, and all friends shall conquer one another; then shall reason hide itself, and wisdom shall withdraw into its chamber, 10 and it shall be sought by many but shall not be found, and unrighteousness and unrestraint shall increase on earth. 11 And one country shall ask its neighbor, ‘Has righteousness, or any one who does right, passed through you?’ And it will answer, ‘No.’ 12 And at that time men shall hope but not obtain; they shall labor but their ways shall not prosper. 13 These are the signs which I am permitted to tell you, and if you pray again, and weep as you do now, and fast for seven days, you shall hear yet greater things than these.”


  1. 2 Esdras 5:1 Syr: Ethiop confusion: Latin is uncertain
  2. 2 Esdras 5:3 Syr: Latin is corrupt
  3. 2 Esdras 5:4 Literally after the third; Ethiop after three months; Arm after the third vision; Georg after the third day
  4. 2 Esdras 5:5 Ethiop Compare Syr and Arab: Latin is uncertain
  5. 2 Esdras 5:7 Cn: Lat fish; and it shall make its voice heard by night, which the many have not known, but all shall hear its voice.
Revised Standard Version (RSV)

Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright © 1946, 1952, and 1971 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


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