THE CHILDHOOD OF JESUS
THE GOSPEL OF JAMES

Biographical Gospel of the Lord

- Chapter 254 -
The Return Of The Stolen Clothes


 
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SHORT TIME AFTERWARD a howling was again heard some distance away, as if coming from the city, and a number of people were to be seen hastening toward the villa.
 
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'What is going on again now?' Joseph asked of the surprised Jonathan.
 
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And the latter said, 'That, like everything else, the Lord will surely know better than we both.'
 
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And James said to them, 'Do not make much of it, for those are the clothes-thieves!
 
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The Lord's might has caught up with them, and they now are paying for their desecration against the hallowed clothes,
 
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for whoever puts them on or even touches them is immediately seized by an inward, consuming fire.
 
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Therefore they now run about crying and lamenting, and will beg us to take these clothes out of their half-burned houses in the city.
 
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Now we are willing to help them, but the Lord will first warn these evil-doers!'
 
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James hardly finished speaking these words, when the howling clothes-thieves were already at Joseph's door.
 
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There they cried mightily for help and deliverance, whereupon Joseph went outside, accompanied by Jonathan.
 
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When he came out, thirty despairing men cried to him,
 
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'You almighty god Jupiter, help us and save us, for we have blasphemed against you, since we did not recognize you!
 
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But now we have recognized you; so we beg you, kill us, or get the clothes belonging to your house out of our houses!'
 
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Here the little Child came outside and warned: 'Listen, you wicked thieves!
 
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As you have taken the clothes, so also bring them back here again.
 
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If you do not do that, death shall be your lot!'
 
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When the thieves heard this, they cried,
 
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'That is the young God, Him we must obey or we are lost!'
 
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Then they all suddenly ran away and brought back all the stolen clothes on iron rods,
 
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for none could touch these clothes with their bare hands.
 
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When the clothes were returned, the little Child let the thieves go and did not punish them any further. Here Joseph joyfully took the clothes back and carried them into the house.