Chapter 7 2 And he said unto me, Up, Esdras, and hear the words that I am come to tell thee.3 And I said, Speak on, my God. Then said he unto me, The sea is set in a wide place, that it might be deep and great.4 But put the case the entrance were narrow, and like a river;5 Who then could go into the sea to look upon it, and to rule it? if he went not through the narrow, how could he come into the broad?6 There is also another thing; A city is builded, and set upon a broad field, and is full of all good things:7 The entrance thereof is narrow, and is set in a dangerous place to fall, like as if there were a fire on the right hand, and on the left a deep water:8 And one only path between them both, even between the fire and the water, so small that there could but one man go there at once.9 If this city now were given unto a man for an inheritance, if he never shall pass the danger set before it, how shall he receive this inheritance?10 And I said, It is so, Lord. Then said he unto me, Even so also is Israel's portion.11 Because for their sakes I made the world: and when Adam transgressed my statutes, then was decreed that now is done.12 Then were the entrances of this world made narrow, full of sorrow and travail: they are but few and evil, full of perils,: and very painful.13 For the entrances of the elder world were wide and sure, and brought immortal fruit.14 If then they that live labour not to enter these strait and vain things, they can never receive those that are laid up for them.15 Now therefore why disquietest thou thyself, seeing thou art but a corruptible man? and why art thou moved, whereas thou art but mortal?16 Why hast thou not considered in thy mind this thing that is to come, rather than that which is present?17 Then answered I and said, O Lord that bearest rule, thou hast ordained in thy law, that the righteous should inherit these things, but that the ungodly should perish.18 Nevertheless the righteous shall suffer strait things, and hope for wide: for they that have done wickedly have suffered the strait things, and yet shall not see the wide.19 And he said unto me. There is no judge above God, and none that hath understanding above the Highest.20 For there be many that perish in this life, because they despise the law of God that is set before them.21 For God hath given strait commandment to such as came, what they should do to live, even as they came, and what they should observe to avoid punishment.22 Nevertheless they were not obedient unto him; but spake against him, and imagined vain things;23 And deceived themselves by their wicked deeds; and said of the most High, that he is not; and knew not his ways:24 But his law have they despised, and denied his covenants; in his statutes have they not been faithful, and have not performed his works.