Those who were sent away wept and made a plan
The children of the nobles of Israel, who were commanded to depart with the son of the king, took counsel together, saying, “What shall we do? For we have left our country and our birthplace, and our kinsfolk and the people of our city. Now, come ye, let us establish a covenant between us only, whereof our kinsfolk shall know nothing, that we will love each other in that country: none shall hasten or tarry here, and we will neither fear nor have any doubt. For God is here, and God is there, and may God’s Will be done! And to Him be praise forever and ever! Amen.” And ’AZÂRYÂS and ’ÊLMÎYÂS, sons of the priests, answered, “Let not the other matter—that our kinsfolk hate us—cause us sorrow, but let us sorrow on account of our Lady ZION because they are making us leave her. For in her they have committed us to God, and we have served her to this day, and let us be sorrowful because they have made us leave her. It is because of her and because of this that they have specially made us weep.” And the others answered and said unto them, “Verily she is our Lady and our hope, and our object of boasting, and we have grown up under her blessedness. And how is it possible for us to forsake ZION our mistress? For we have been given to her. And what shall we do? If we resist his command the king will kill us, and we are unable to transgress the word of our fathers or the king’s command. And what shall we do concerning ZION our Lady?”
’AZÂRYÂS, the son of ZADOK the priest, answered and said, “I will counsel you what we shall do. But make a covenant with me to the end of your lives, and swear to me that ye will not repeat it whether we live or whether we die, or whether we are taken captive or whether we go forth [unhindered].” And they swore an oath to him in the Name of the Lord God of Israel, and by the heavenly Zion, the Tabernacle of the Law of God, and by what God had promised unto Abraham, and by the purity and excellence of ISAAC, and by His making JACOB arrive in and inherit a land whereto he was a stranger, and his seed after him.
When they had sworn thus to him, he answered and said unto them, “Come now, let us take [with us] our Lady ZION; but how are we to take her? I will show you. And carry ye out my plan and if God willeth we shall be able to take our Lady with us. And if they should gain knowledge of our doings and slay us, that shall not trouble us, because we shall die for our Lady ZION.” And they all rose up and kissed his head, and his face, and his eyes, and they said unto him, “We will do everything that thou hast counseled us to do; whether we die or whether we live, we are with thee for the sake of our Lady ZION. If we die it will not cause us sorrow, and if we live—the Will of God be done!” And one of them, the son of YÔAS (BENAIAH), whose name was ZECHARIAH, said, “I cannot sit down because of the great gladness that is in my heart. Tell me, moreover, canst thou indeed carry her off, and is it not a lie? Thou canst go into the House of God in the place of thy father ZADOK, and the keys are continually in thy hand. But ponder well what we counsel thee before they take the keys out of thy hand. Thou knowest the hidden openings (or, windows) which King SOLOMON made; but none of the priests may enter therein except thy father once each year in order to offer up the sacrifice in the Holy of Holies on behalf of himself and on behalf of the people. Ponder, consider, and sleep not in the matter of thy wish to carry away ZION. And we will depart with her as soon as she hath been committed to our care, and we shall have joy and our fathers’ sorrow when she arriveth with us in the country of Ethiopia.”
AZÂRYÂS said unto them, “Do ye what I tell you, and we shall succeed. Give ye to me each of you ten dîdrachmas, and I will give them to a carpenter so that he will make haste to prepare for me a good planks of wood—now because of his love of money he will fasten them together very quickly—of the height, and breadth, and length and size of our Lady [ZION]. And I will give him the dimensions of myself, and I will say unto him, “Prepare for me pieces of wood for a framework (?) so that I may make a raft therefrom; for we are going to travel over the sea, and in the event of the ship sinking I shall be able to get up on the raft, and we shall be saved from the sea. And I will take the framework without the pieces of wood thereof being fixed together, and I will have them put together in ETHIOPIA. And I will set them down in the habitation of ZION and will drape them with the draperies of ZION, and I will take ZION, and will dig a hole in the ground, and will set ZION there until we journey and take it away with us thither. And I will not tell the matter to the king until we have traveled far.”
They each gave him ten dîdrachmas, and this money amounted to one hundred and forty dîdrachmas, and he took them and gave them to a carpenter, who straightway fashioned a good piece of work from the remains of the wood of the house of the sanctuary, and AZÂRYÂS rejoiced and showed it to his brethren.
They made a plan concerning ZION
While AZÂRYÂS was asleep at night the Angel of the Lord appeared unto him, and said unto him, “Take to thee four goats, each a yearling—now they shall be for your sins, thyself, and ’ÊLMEYÂS, and ’ABÎS, and MÂKRÎ—and four pure sheep, yearlings also, and an ox whereon no yoke hath ever been laid. And thou shalt offer up the ox as a sacrifice on the east side of her (i.e., ZION), and the sheep and the goats to the right, and left thereof, and at the west of it, which is close to its exit. And your Lord DAVID shall speak to SOLOMON the King and shall say unto him, ‘One thing I ask from thee, O father, I would offer up a sacrifice to the holy city JERUSALEM, and to my Lady ZION, the holy and heavenly Tabernacle of the Law of God.’ And SOLOMON shall say unto him, ‘Do so.’ And DAVID shall say unto him, ‘Let the son of the priest offer up the sacrifice on my behalf, even as he knoweth’; and he will give thee the command, and thou shalt offer up the sacrifice. And thou shalt bring forth the Tabernacle of the Law of God after thou hast offered up the sacrifice, and I will again show thee what thou shalt do in respect of it as to bring it out; for this is from God. For ISRAEL hath provoked God to wrath, and for this reason, He will make the Tabernacle of the Law of God to depart from him.”
When AZÂRYÂS awoke from his dream he rejoiced greatly, and his heart and his mind were clear, and he remembered everything that the Angel of the Lord had shown him in the night, and how he had sealed him [with the sign of the Cross], and given him strength and heartened him. And he went to his brethren, and when they were gathered together he told them everything that the Angel of God had shown him: how the Tabernacle of the Law of God had been given to them, and how God had made blind His eye in respect to the kingdom of Israel, and how its glory had been given to others, and they themselves were to take away the Tabernacle of the Law of God, and how the kingdom of Solomon was seized by them—with the exception of two “rods”, and how it was not to be left to ÎYÔRBĔ‛ÂM (REHOBOAM) his son, and how the kingdom of Israel was to be divided. And [AZÂRYÂS said], “Rejoice with me. I rejoice because it hath been shown unto me thus; for the grace of their priesthood and kingdom shall depart with us, and it shall be by the Will of God. Thus said he (i.e., the Angel) unto me. And now come ye, and let us go and tell David our Lord so that he may say to his father, ‘I will offer up a sacrifice.'”
They went and told [DAVID, the son of SOLOMON] and he rejoiced, and he sent to YÔ‛AS (BENAIAH), the son of YÔDÂḤÊ, to come to him, that he might send him to his father, and he came. And DAVID sent him to his father SOLOMON, and he said unto him, “Send me away, for I will depart to my own country, together with everything that thy goodness hath given me; and may thy prayers accompany me always whithersoever I shall go. But now there is one petition which I would make unto thee, if peradventure I have found grace with thee, and turn not away thy face from me. For I thy servant is going to depart, and I wish to offer up a sacrifice of propitiation (or, salvation) for my sins in this thy holy city of Jerusalem and of Zion, the Tabernacle of the Law of God. And peace [be] with thy majesty.”
The offering of AZÂRYÂS (AZARIAH) and the King
YÔ‛ÂS (BENAIAH), the son of YÔDÂḤÊ, went and told King Solomon, and the King rejoiced over it and commanded them to make ready the altar of offering so that his son might sacrifice. And he brought and gave unto him that which he had vowed to God, one hundred bulls, one hundred oxen, ten thousand sheep, ten thousand goats, and ten of every kind of animal that may be eaten, and ten of every kind of clean bird, so that he might offer libations and sacrifices to the God of Israel; and twenty silver sâḥal of fine white flour, each weighing twelve shekels, and forty baskets of bread. All these things did SOLOMON the King give unto his son DAVID. And again DAVID sent a message saying, “Let AZÂRYÂS the priest offer up the sacrifice on my behalf”; and Solomon said unto him, “Do that which thou wishest.” And AZÂRYÂS rejoiced because of this thing, and he went and brought from his father’s flock an ox whereon never yoke had been laid, and four yearlings of the goats and four clean yearlings of the sheep. And the king went to offer up sacrifice, and the priests made themselves ready, and the poor folk was gathered together, and the birds of the heavens rejoiced, and they were all united in their great gladness that day. And AZÂRYÂS mingled [his offerings] with the offerings of the king, and he made an offering with his vessels, even as the Angel of God had commanded him to do by night. And then, after they had offered up their sacrifices, they went back to their houses and slept.
They carried away ZION
Behold, the Angel of the Lord appeared again to AZÂRYÂS and he stood up above him like a pillar of fire, and he filled the house with his light. And he raised up AZÂRYÂSand said unto him, “Stand up, be strong, and rose up thy brother ÊLMĔYÂS, and ’ABĔSÂ, and MÂKARÎ, and take the pieces of wood and I will open for thee the doors of the sanctuary. And take thou the Tabernacle of the Law of God, and thou shalt carry it without trouble and discomfort. And I, inasmuch as I have been commanded by God to be with it forever, will be thy guide when thou shalt carry it away.”
AZÂRYÂS rose up straightway and woke up the three men his brethren, and they took the pieces of wood and went into the house of God—now they found all the doors open, both those that were outside and those that were inside—to the actual place where AZÂRYÂS found ZION, the Tabernacle of the Law of God; and it was taken away by them forthwith, in the twinkling of an eye, the Angel of the Lord is present and directing. And had it not been that God willed it ZION could not have been taken away forthwith. And the four of them carried ZION away, and they brought it into the house of AZÂRYÂS, and they went back into the house of God, and they set the pieces of wood on the place where ZION had been, and they covered them over with the covering of ZION, and they shut the doors, and went back to their houses. And they took lamps and set them in the place where [ZION] was hidden, and they sacrificed the sheep thereto, and burned offerings of incense thereto, and they spread purple cloths over it and set it in a secret place for seven days and seven nights.
The Father blessed his Son
Then the King of Ethiopia rose up to depart to his country, and he came to his father that he might pray on his behalf, and he said unto him, “Bless me, father”; and he made obeisance unto him. And the King raised him up, and blessed him, and embraced his head, and said, “Blessed be the Lord my God Who blessed my father DAVID, and Who blessed our father ABRAHAM. May He be with thee always, and bless thy seed even as He blessed Jacob, and made his seed to be as many as the stars of heaven and the sand of the sea. And as Abraham blessed ISAAC my father, even so, shall thy blessing be—the dew of heaven and the spaciousness of the earth—and may all animals and all the birds of the heavens, and all the beasts of the field and the fish of the sea be in subjection unto thee.
Be thou full, and not lacking in fullness; be thou perfect, and not lacking in perfection; be gracious, and not obstinate; be in good health, and not suffering; be generous, and not vindictive; be pure, and not defiled; be righteous, and not a sinner; be merciful, and not oppressive; be sincere, and not perverse; be long-suffering, and not prone to wrath. And the enemy shall be afraid of thee, and thine adversaries shall cast p. 73 themselves under the sole of thy foot. And my Lady ZION, the holy and heavenly, the Tabernacle of the Law of God, shall be a guide unto thee at all times, a guide in respect of what thou shouldst think in thy heart and shouldst do with thy fingers, whether it be far or near to thee, whether it be low or high to thee, whether it be strong or weak to thee, whether it be outside or inside thee, whether it be to thee in the house or in the field, whether it be visible or invisible to thee, whether it be away from or near to thee, whether it be hidden from or revealed to thee, whether it be secret or published abroad to thee—unto thee our Lady ZION, the holy and heavenly, the pure Tabernacle of the Law of God, shall be a guide.” And DAVID was blessed, and he made obeisance and departed.
‘The Contents of the Kebra NagastT Described [ch1-59]’
‘The Contents of the Kebra Nagast Described [ch 60-117]’
‘THE GLORY OF KINGS’- [ch1-10]
‘The Glory of Zion’-[ch11-20]’
The queen came to Solomon the king’-[ch-21-25]
‘Solomon gave Commandments to the Queen’-[ch 26-29]
‘The King of Ethiopia traveled’-[ch 30-34]
‘They made the Son of King Solomon’- [ch 35-39]
‘ The Ten Commandments’-[ch 40-44]
‘They carried away Zion’-[ch 45-49]
‘The Wagon was given to Ethiopia’-[ch 50-55]
‘The Fall of Zadok the Priest’- [ch 56-60]
‘The sin King Solomon’-[ch 61-65]
‘The Question of Solomon'[ch 66-69]
‘Mary the daughter of David’-[ch 70-75]
‘The King of Persia’-[ch 76-80]
‘Abraham traveled to Egypt’-[ch 81-87]
‘This is what ye shall eat: the clean and the unclean’-[ch 88-91]
‘The first war of the Ethiopian King’-[ch 92-95]
‘Prophecy about Christ’-[ch 96-99]
The Ark of the covenant-[ch100-104]
‘The Coming of Christ”-[ch 105-109]
‘The return of Zion’