Ezra’s Seventh Vision – 4 Ezra 14:1-48

Ezra has his final vision three days later while sitting under an oak (14:1-18).  The Lord calls to him and tells him to store up all of the visions he has received because the ages are growing old and the time of the end is drawing near.  History has been divided into twelve parts, and nine of these parts are already past as well as half of the tenth part.  The eagle of the last vision is “already hastening to come.”

Ezra the requests the Lord allow him to rewrite the scripture so the present generation will know what has happened (14:19-26). The Law was burned along with the Temple, therefore the people need new copies given to them by the Lord.  The Lord allows this, but some of the books are kept secret (14:26).  He announces his intention to rewrite the scripture to the people (14:27-36), and for forty days he goes into a field along with five scribes.

He is given a drink by an angel which will give him complete understanding and total recall as he dictates all day long.  After forty days ninety-four books were created:  the twenty-four canonical books and the seventy “hidden” books (14:37-48). This can be taken as a reference to an Old Testament canon since the 24 books are obviously the books of the Hebrew Bible. If 4 Ezra is dated to the end of the first century, then we have at least some indication that the canon was fixed by that date (for the author of 4 Ezra, at least!)

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