21 – No One Compares to John

John teaches in the nights,
John in the evenings of the night
John teaches in the nights and says,
“Did I not go away alone and return?
What prophet compares to me,
and who teaches under my banner,
and who speaks with my sublime voice?”

When John said these things, two people cry:
Miriai and Elizabeth cry,
and the tears of the two women flow.
And they say, “We shall go while you stay.
lest you offend us.
I will go while you stay,
Lest you offend me.
I will go while you stay,
Lest lamentation take hold of me.”

John opens his mouth and says to Elizabeth,
“Is there anyone in Jerusalem that made me pass into heaven?
Is there anyone that made me pass into the house of greatness?
is there anyone that made me pass into heaven?

You can ransom me.
If you are pleased to ransom me, bring your gems and purchase me.
If you are pleased to ransom me, bring your pearls and purchase me.
If you are pleased to ransom me, bring your gold and purchase me.”

Elizabeth opens her mouth and speaks to John in Jerusalem,
“Who compares to you in Judaea,
And who compares to you in Jerusalem,
That I should see him and forget you?”

“Who is like me?
Who is like me,
That you see me and forget me?
As a result of my voice and the sound of my teaching,
The Torah has become void in Jerusalem.
As a result of the sound of their liturgical responses,
The reciter does not recite in Jerusalem.
The adulterers forsake their adultery,
And women do not go forth to (offer) sacrifices.
Brides come in their veils
And their tears reach the earth.
The child in its mother’s womb hears my voice and weeps.
Merchants do not trade in Judaea
and fishermen do not fish in Jerusalem.
Women of the sons of Israel do not wear dyed garments,
Brides do not adorn themselves with gold,
and ladies do not put on charms.
These women and men do not see their faces in the mirror.
At my voice and the sound of my teaching,
Water rises and stands in a pillar.
At my voice and the sound of my teaching,
Fish offered greetings.
At my voice and the sound of my teaching,
winged birds prostrated themselves in worship
And said ‘Hail to you, indeed hail to you, John,
And hail to the man whom you worship.
You were saved and you were set free, John,
And naked you have left the world behind.
Women did not seduce you into their adulteries,
And their words did not panic you
You did not forget censers,
And incense offerings to your lord did not leave your mind.
You did not become drunk with wine,
And you did not do deeds of abomination.
Infidelity did not snare you in Jerusalem.
You were saved and you were set free,
And your throne is established for you in the house of life.’”

And life is victorious

About James F. McGrath

Clarence L. Goodwin Chair in New Testament Language and Literature, Butler University.
This entry was posted in John the Baptist, Miriai and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply