|4 Esdras 7:26,28-29 |
26 Behold, the time shall come, that these tokens which I have told you shall come to pass, and the bride [city] shall appear, and she coming forth shall be seen, who now is withdrawn from the earth.
28 For my son Jesus shall be revealed with those that be with him, and those who remain shall rejoice within four hundred years.
29 After these years shall my son the Christ die, and all men who have life.3
3 For my son Jesus shall be revealed with those that be with him, and those who remain shall rejoice within four hundred years. After these years shall my son Christ die, and all men that have life. This is a remarkable prophecy about his son Jesus, written 400 years before his birth. Many scholars have worked hard to discredit it as written before the death of Christ. However, George Fox quoted from these verses and others to prove that the Jesus was the Messiah and was shamefully put to death, just as predicted in the Jews' own scriptures:
Again [like Mat 23:37] , in 4 Esdras 1:30. ‘the Lord [would have] gathered you, as a hen gathers her chicken under her wings: but now what shall I do for you? I will cast you out of my sight.’ Would not the Messiah have gathered you when he came, but you would not hear? So your house has become a desolation [the temple destroyed], and you were cast forth [scattered in exile].
And in Solomon's Book of Wisdom Chapter 2: ‘He upbraids us for offending against the law (2:12); he makes his boast to have the knowledge of God and calls himself the Son of God (2:13); he is made to reprove our thoughts (2:14); it grieves us also to look upon him for his life is not like other men's, his ways are of another fashion (2:15): let us examine him with rebukes and torments, that we may know his meekness, and prove his patience(2:19); let us condemn him to a shameful death (2:20).’ And did not you Jews fulfill all this? Are not these sayings verified by you concerning the Messiah?
And you sons of Adam, who are called Jews, what do you think of the saying in 4 Esdras? Chapter 7, ‘The bride shall appear, and he shall come forth and be seen, that now is under the earth: for my Son Jesus shall appear with those that be with him, and those who remain shall rejoice within four hundred years; and after these same years shall my Son Christ die.’ So do you think he spoke truth? What Jesus was this, the anointed,* that was prophesied of should die after the four hundred years?
*the crucified, purified, sanctified, perfected believers of the early Church had the anointing and had the life of God within them, as they walked the earth but dwelled in sight and consciousness in heaven. Both Jesus and John spoke of the anointing as "he," a person, that person being the Spirit of Jesus. They freely confessed that Jesus, (the anointing), had come in their flesh to be their ruling Lord and King.
Further, the 400 years was close to the life of the early church, which was the woman who was forced to flee into the wilderness. Then the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, that they should feed her there one thousand-two-hundred and sixty days. Rev 12:6. The woman had a man child who was to rule the nations with a rod of iron; The man child child was taken up into the heavens in 388 AD. The woman is the church of Christ; the true church, which was forced by the devil to flee into the wilderness for 1260 days (years by Bible references) by the persecutions of the false church in which Satan rules. So the true church was no longer seen in the world, no longer organized, but instead became a few isolated individuals; and all men that have life also died after 400 years — the true church died out, (after these years shall my son Christ die, and all men that have life). George Fox refers to this throughout his writings. The true Church of Christ returned from the wilderness in 1648, the beginning of Fox entering the Kingdom, which resulted in thousands entering the kingdom of heaven to be kings and priests to God. Counting backwards, the true church totally disappeared in 388AD. The woman had a man child who was to rule the nations with a rod of iron; The man child child was taken up into the heavens in 388 AD, a few years after the sainted Roman Emperor Theodosius I had enacted a law in 380 AD establishing Roman Catholic Christianity as the official religion of the Roman Empire, which effectively combined the church and Roman state as one entity. The crushing boot of the Empire's sponsored Roman religion was used to persecute and kill the true church by burning all heretics. The Roman Empire's church, both east and west, had doctrines that had been dictated by the sainted Emperors Constantine and Justinian the despot, thus eliminating the true gospel by 388 AD. As prophesied in Revelation, the church adulterated with the Kings of the earth.
The Book of 4 Esdras 7:28 states: "For my son Jesus shall be revealed with those that be with him, and those who remain shall rejoice within four hundred years." This book was originally in the King James Bible, to be removed in the early 1800s. There is argument over when this book was written: some say long before Christ, some say in the 2nd Century — but in either case it was a prophecy that came true. 388 years is close to 400 AD, the time that the early church died, (and all men that have life died too), the woman (Church) went into the wilderness, and her son, (the man-child Jesus) was taken up to heaven (referenced as died).
Around 1750, the Quaker movement, as pure as it had been in the beginning, became completely apostatized, with the last substance disappearing by 1880. The long night of apostasy picked up again. The man child awaits his appearance again. From the Word of the Lord within: "The woman was snatched away and hidden in the wilderness again. The woman in the wilderness is beautiful. Little children, listen to the woman in the wilderness. This time when she appears, she will come in great power." So the true church is no longer seen in the world, no longer organized, but instead is a few isolated individuals being prepared and following their Lord and Master.
Isaac Penington writes of the church in the wilderness:
But Zion, all this while, has lain in the dust, and been despised; she has had no building, no fence, but has been trampled under foot by every unclean beast. Her witnesses have been clothed with sack-cloth, (a garment which all the lofty inhabitants of Babylon disdain): her fare has been hard in the wilderness, only a little manna, (which, with the fleshly Israel, who lust after rich and large knowledge, is counted light bread, and their souls soon loathe it);* nor had she this in plenty, but only a small proportion daily, from the hand of the free Giver, sufficient to keep life in her in the wilderness, and to furnish her with strength to give in her testimony against Babylon, so far as the Lord saw good to call any of her seed thereunto. Now what believer can be willing to fare thus with her at present, and to wait for her future riches, fullness, beauty, and glory? No, no; they have so long lived richly, and fared so deliciously in Babylon, that they know not how to eat the bread of affliction, and drink the water of affliction, with sad and desolate Zion: and yet this is the only way and passage out of Babylon into Zion. That which has been rich and fat, and full fed there, must become poor and lean, and feel hunger, and have none of the bread of life administered to it; no, not so much as husks either.
*Penington has said that a seeker in the wilderness must be satisfied with a difficult-to-receive bread and with not much bread (spoken words heard in the heart); in the wilderness there is no organized, mature body of true Christians to meet with and be ministered to by them all speaking from the Word of God in their hearts. Further Penington observes that many fleshly Christians cannot tolerate small beginnings, only content with volumes of words heard or read. For years, waiting on God every day for an hour in the morning, I would hear one short sentence every week or two; such are the small beginnings in the wilderness.