(7.1) Beloved, we write not only admonishing you, but also reminding ourselves, for we are in the same arena and the same contest is imposed on us.
(7.2) Therefore, let us leave behind the empty and worthless concerns, and approach the renowned and honorable rule (canon) of our tradition.
(7.3) And let us look to what is good, and what is pleasing, and what is acceptable before our Maker.
(7.4) Let us look to the blood of Christ, which is precious to His Father, which, having been poured out for our salvation, has made available to the whole world the abundance of repentance.
(7.5) Let us go through every generation and observe that, from generation to generation, the Master has granted a place of repentance to those who would turn to Him.
(7.6) Noah preached repentance, and those who listened were saved.
(7.7) Jonah preached destruction to the Ninevites, but they, having repented of their sins, appeased God by supplication, and received salvation, even though they were foreigners to God.
(8.1) The ministers of the grace of God have spoken through the Holy Spirit about repentance.
(8.2) Indeed the Master of All has spoken of repentance with an oath: “For as I live, says the Lord, I do not desire the death of the sinner, rather his repentance,” also adding this beneficient statement:
(8.3) “Repent, House of Israel, of your lawlessness. Say to the sons of my people, Even though your sins reach from earth to heaven, and even though they are redder than scarlet, and blacker than sackcloth, if you turn to Me with your whole heart and say Father, I will listen to you as a holy people.”
(8.4) And in another place He says thus: “Wash, and become clean. Remove the evils from your souls from before My eyes. Cease from your evils. Learn to do good. Rescue the unrighteous. Judge the orphan and justify the widow. Come, let us reason, says the Lord. Even though your sins might be like purple, I will make them white as snow. Even though they might be as scarlet, I will make them white as wool. And if you are willing and listen to me, you will eat of the good things of the earth. And if you are not willing, and will not listen to me, the sword will devour you. For the mouth of the Lord has said these things.”
(8.5) Therefore, willing all His beloved ones to have a part in repentance, He has established (it) in His Almighty will.
(9.1) Therefore, let us listen to His excellent and glorious will, and being suppliants of mercy and His goodness, let us prostrate ourselves and return to His compassion, leaving behind fruitless toil, strife, and envy that leads to death.
(9.2) Let us look particularly to those who perfectly ministered to His magnificent glory.
(9.3) Let us take Enoch, who, having been found righteous in obedience, was taken up, and he was not found (by) death.
(9.4) Noah, having been found faithful, through his ministry preached regeneration to the world, and by him the Master saved the animals, which entered in harmony into the Ark.
(10.1) Abraham, called the Friend, was found faithful, in his being obedient to the utterances of God.
(10.2) Through obedience, he went away from his land, and from his kindred, and from the house of his father, so that in leaving a little land, a weak family, and a small house, he might inherit the promises of God. For He said to him:
(10.3) “Go out from your land, and from your kindred, and from the house of your father, to the land I will show to you, and I will make you a great nation, and I will bless you, and I will make your name great and you will be blessed. And I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse those who curse you. And in you will be blessed all the tribes of the earth.”
(10.4) And again, in his separating from Lot, God said to him, “Lift up your eyes. Look from the place where you are now to north, and south, and east, and west, because I will give it, all the land which you see, to you and to your seed forever.
(10.5) “And I will make your seed like the sand of the earth, so that if one may count the sand of the earth, your seed may be counted.”
(10.6) And again (He) says, “God led out Abraham and said to him, ‘Look up to heaven and count the starts, if you can count them. So shall your seed be.’ Abraham believed God and it was reckoned to him as righteousness.
(10.7) Because of faith and hospitality, he was given a son in old age, and by obedience brought him as a sacrifice to God on the mountain which He showed him.
(11.1) Because of hospitality and godliness, Lot was saved from Sodom, the condemnation of the surrounding area by fire, the Master having made it divinely evident that those who place their hope in Him will not be abandoned, but those inclined toward possessions are given over to punishment and torments.
(11.2) For his wife went out with him, being different-minded, and not in harmony with it; therefore a sign was appointed, her becoming a pillar of salt unto this day, to be known to all, that the two-minded and the doubters about the power of God will be for judgment and a warning to all generations.
(12.1) Because of faith and hospitality, Rahab the prostitute was saved.
(12.2) When the spies were sent out by Joshua son of Nun to Jericho, the king of that land knew that they had come to spy on his country, and sent out men to catch them, so that having been caught, they’d be put to death.
(12.3) But hospitable Rahab welcomed them, hiding them on the roof, under stalks of flax.
(12.4) When those from the king arrived and said “Those spying on our land came to you; bring them out, for so orders the king,” she replied, “The men whom you seek certainly came in to me, but immediately left and are gone on their way,” pointing them in the opposite direction.
(12.5) And she said to the men, “I certainly know that the Lord God has given this land to you, for the fear and the dread of you is fallen upon all its inhabitants. When, therefore, you have taken it for yourselves, save me and the house of my father.
(12.6) And they said to her, “It will be as you have spoken to us. Therefore, as soon as you know we are coming, gather all of your (family) under your roof; for as many as are found outside the house will perish.”
(12.7) And they also gave her a sign, that she would hang outside her house some scarlet, making it evident that through the blood of the Lord is redemption for all who have faith in and put their hope in God.
(12.8) Notice, beloved ones, that there was not only faith, but also prophecy in this woman.
(13.1) Therefore, brethren, let us be humble-minded, laying aside all pretension and arrogance and foolishness and anger and let us do what is written, for the Holy Spirit says, “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, nor the strong man in his strength, nor the rich man in his wealth, but rather let him who glories glory in the Lord, to seek Him, doing justice and righteousness,” especially remembering the words of the Lord Jesus which He spoke, teaching us gentleness and patience.
(13.2) For He spoke thus, “Be merciful, that you might obtain mercy; forgive, that you might be forgiven; as you do, so it will be done to you; as you give, so shall you receive; as you judge, so shall you be judged; as you are merciful, so shall you receive mercy; the measure you measure with, with it shall be measured to you.”
(13.3) With this commandment and these instructions, let us strengthen ourselves in order to conduct ourselves in obedience to His holy words, being humble-minded. For the holy word says,
(13.4) “On whom shall I look, but upon him who is humble and quiet and trembles at my words?”
(14.1) Therefore, men, brethren, it is right and holy to be obedient to God rather than to follow those leaders in pretension and disturbance of detestable envy.
(14.2) For it is not the gain of a small injury, but rather great danger we will suffer if we recklessly give ourselves to the intentions of these men who aim at strife and rebellion, in order to alienate us from having good health.
(14.3) Let us be kind to one another, according to the kindheartedness and sweetness of our Maker.
(14.4) For it is written, “The kind will inhabit the earth, and the innocent will be left upon it, but the lawless shall be uprooted from it.”
(14.5) And again, it says, “I saw the impious being raised high and being exalted like the cedars of Lebanon; and I passed by and behold, he was not; and I searched for his place but did not find it. Guard innocence and look on uprightness, for there will be a remnant for the peaceful man.
(15.1) So let us associate with those who live in peace with godliness, and not with those who hypocritically desire peace.
(15.2) For it says somewhere, “This people honors me with the lips, but their hearts have departed far from me.”
(15.3) And again, “With their mouth they bless, but curse with their heart.”
(15.4) And again it says, “They loved him with their mouth, and their tongue told him lies, and their heart was not upright with him, nor did they believe in his covenant.”
(15.5) Therefore, “let the deceitful lips that are speaking against the righteous become speechless;” and again, “Let the Lord destroy all the deceitful lips, and the boastful tongue of those who said, We will magnify our tongue; our lips are our own; who is our lord?
(15.6) “Because of the distress of the poor, and the groan of the needy, I will now arise, says the Lord; I will place (him) in safety.
(15.7) I will deal boldly with him.”