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The General Epistle of Barnabas

From, The Lost Books of the Bible
Edits, corrections and cross references by The Firmament

Introduction

Barnabas, whose name means “son of encouragement”, addresses this epistle to his sons and daughters saying, “I therefore, not as a teacher, but as one of you, will endeavor to lay before you a few things by which you may, on many accounts, become the more joyful.” (Bar 1:10)

Barnabas was a Levite from Cyprus, and his given name was Joseph or Joses. He sold his land and gave the money to the apostles in Jerusalem. (Acts 4:36-37) This was the custom of the apostles who “had all things common… and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need.” (Acts 4:32-35)

Barnabas was a companion and fellow teacher with Paul, the apostle. He introduced Saul (as Paul was still called) to the apostles and told them how “he spoke boldly in the Name of the Lord…and disputed against the Hellenists…” (Acts 9:27-29) He accompanied Paul on his first journey from Seleucia, a place near Antioch in Syria, to Cyprus where they taught the Word of God. (Acts 13:4-5) From there they went to the provinces of Asia Minor, where they again declared the message. (Acts 13:13, 14:1-6) After traveling throughout the region, they returned to Antioch and remained there for some time. Afterward, they passed through Samaria to Jerusalem and then later back to Antioch. (Acts 15:1-6, :12-35) Afterwards, Barnabas took Mark on a second journey to Cyprus while Paul and Silas traveled through Syria and Cilicia. (Acts 15:36-41)

Barnabas and Paul went in search of the lost sheep of the house of Israel to give them the news of the coming King of Righteousness, prophesied to come in the latter days. As it is written in the Lost Chapter of Acts (Acts 29), “And Paul, full of the blessings of Christ, and abounding in the Spirit, departed out of Rome, determining to go into Spain, for he had a long time proposed to journey there, and was minded also to go from there to Britain.” (Acts 29:1)

Barnabas wrote, “In many times and in many ways of old, God spoke to the forefathers by the Prophets, of the last days, He has spoken to us of a Son, whom He has appointed heir of the Throne, He by whom all things have been made through the ages.” (Heb 1:1-2)

Paul states, “And in the latter days new announcements of the Righteous Message shall issue forth out of Jerusalem, and the hearts of the people shall rejoice, and behold, Fountains shall be opened, and there shall be no more plague. In those days there shall be wars and rumors of war; and a King shall rise up, and his Sword, shall be for the healing of the people, and his Law of Rest shall stand, and the glory of his Kingdom a wonder among rulers.” (Acts 29:11-12)

In this epistle, Barnabas gives explanation of the time frame of these latter days. “For with Him one day is a thousand years; as Himself testifies, saying, Behold this day shall be as a thousand years. Therefore, children, in six days, that is, in six thousand years, shall all things be accomplished. And what is it that He said, And He rested the seventh day: He means this; that when His Son shall come, and abolish the season of the Wicked One, and judge the ungodly; and shall change the Sun and the Moon, and the Stars; then he shall gloriously rest in that seventh day.” (Bar 13:5-6)

In the book of Hebrews, Barnabas writes, “For if Joshua had given them rest, then he would not have afterward spoken of another day. There remains therefore a rest (a keeping of the Sabbath) to the people of God. For the one that enters into His rest, they also will cease from their own works, as God did from His. Be eager therefore to enter into that rest…” (Heb 4:8-11)

Lastly, Barnabas tells us, “Be you taught of God; seeking what it is the Lord requires of you, and doing it; that you be saved in the Day of Judgement.” (Bar 15:13)

The Book of Barnabas was indexed from the “Canon” Bible, even though his book of Hebrews remains in the New Testament. He reveals the meaning of parables and uncovers the shadows of the Law with the same clarity in both his book of Hebrews as well as this book, his general epistle. “For should I speak further of the things that now are, and of those that are to come, you would not yet understand them, seeing they lie in parables. This therefore shall suffice as to these things.” (Bar 14:2) “For the Law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things…” (Heb 10:1) He writes lastly, “…I have given the more diligence to write to you, according to my ability, that you might rejoice. Farewell, children, of love and peace.” (Bar 15:16)

In this translation, the name “Jesus” has been left from the original Greek translation. It should be noted, however, that “Jesus” is a Greek name that has been grafted onto the Israelite teacher and prophet. His name was “Joshua” or “Y’hoshua”, as it would have been pronounced in the Hebrew tongue.

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