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Written By: Mar Narsai (?-502)

Translated by: Orahim Yalda Orahim (also known as, Ibrahim Y. Ibrahim)

The Word that John wrote prepared a new path for us;

And he was the first to tread on and becarne a guide for all of us.

He prepared the way towards Existence, and showed that one is the equality;

That the Father and His Begotten are one, and there is no time between Him and His Begotten,

His word was like thunder, and he roared in the four directions;

He beautifully called him the son of thunder, he who preached the word 'In the beginning'.

Hear all you peoples, and listen all you nations to the message that I preach!

The Father, who out of His bosom, begot the Son who is not younger than His begetter.

In the beginning He was a Word, and He was with God,

And that Word was the God by Qnooma and by Power,

O mystery that was hidden since ages and from generations!

The son of thunder made it known and revealed it to the celestial and the terrestrial beings.

O John the preacher the wretched race of Adam

To whom the Holy Spirit gave the keys and opened the treasure of Existence with.

He climbed and reached the height of heights above the spiritual hosts. And the power of grace brought him close to talk about Existence.

He received power and authority, and preached the Word that was 'In the beginning'

That the Son in the beginning was eternally with His begetter.

He was from all eternity with His Father; like the rays with its sun. That neither the sun is earlier than its radiance, nor is the radiance earlier than the sphere.

The radiance of the sun is with it; there is no time it is not with it.

With the Father is the begotten; there is no time that He is departed from Him.

The father is the true Qnooma, and the Son a Qnooma like Him;

Though He is called the Father, there is no time between Him and His begotten.

He is the nature that is from eternity, and there is no beginning for His Existence.

Neither the Father began to be, nor the Son, there is time for His begetting.

The Father is an eternal being; there is no time He was not a father;

And the Son perfect who is no less there is no time that He was not begotten.

The Being is very far from times; the times and the worlds commence from Him.

How a Being could be limited by the times that He made.

As far as the thought could go, up to the times will find Him;

And neither the Father began at His begetting, nor there is time for the begetting of the Son.

John called Him the Word that is from eternity with His Father;

Like the word with the soul which is from it and with it.

The word is with the soul, and it travels away from it and it is in it; The Son was with His Father, and He came to the world and was with Him.

The word does not travel away, and depart from the soul for good; neither did the Son travel away from His Begetter, or was afar from Him by departure.

The word travels to all directions, and never departs the soul;

When it is a mediator it is in the soul where it is.

The Word traveled also away from the Father and came to our dwelling we the mortals;

And while He dwelt in our nature, His whole was in His Father.

The word that is in the soul could be seen manifestingly;

And when it is fashioned by ink, it is seen through letters.

Though it is confined within letters and limited within the garments of ink,

By letters it is by name; and its whole dwells within the soul. The pupils see the ink when they stare at the letters;

And the word does not give its nature to be limited by the pupils. The Son was hidden with His father from those up high and those down below.

We were shown Him by His will through the ink of Adam's body. And though the garment of our nature shrouded His divinity,

His will dwelt in our nature, and His nature stayed in its hiding.

The body that He wore did not limit His unlimitable nature;

Nor did the eye of flesh see the secrecy of His divinity.

It was by His hand John said, that everything that became was made, Nothing became without Him; He willed and put in order everything that became.

He is a fountain that is full of life, and that has gained life by His nature.

And from life that is in His nature divided life among His hand-made. Life is the light that chases darkness out of life;

And the darkness of oblivion cannot hinder the course of light.

He was in the world from eternity, and the world was made by His hand;

And though the world was His, the world did not want to believe in Him.

The Creator came for those of His own, and those of His own did not accept His Word;

And those who listened to His commands, merited the power of sons.

He called us His own sons, by the mercy He showed towards our kind;

He made us to be reborn by the Baptism of water and of the spirit.          

His good will showed us that He dignified us by the name of son ship.

And He proved that by choosing for Himself a dwelling among His children.

The Word, John said, that became flesh and dwelt in us, And we saw the glory of his hiddeness at the threshold of our humanity.

He became flesh and dwelt in us, and He showed us His hidden glory.

Since He is hidden by His nature, He showed His glory through our body.

Not into a being He was inferiorated when he said that He became flesh, but by that when He made flesh for Himself and dwelt in it.

For it is not possible for a Creator to come into a new existence, by His own will.

Neither Existence that has no beginning could be limited by the time of His begetting For if He was from eternity, how would He come into existence?

And if He came into existence, then He is far from what He was.

There is no beginning or end for the Existence that is from Eternity,

And what comes into existence, that existence precedes its nature.

If the Being is with the Father, He will not be limited by His nature.

And if He limits Himself by the womb, then He is not a Being like His begetter.

And if He is everywhere, and now He came into existence, how did He receives His formation? Was it a part of Him or His whole?

If His whole was limited, He is not merited with that that He is unlimited:

And if a part was limited, then His whole was limited.

And if He could be limited as a whole or by part,

Then the Father is limited too, from whom is the nature of the Son.

How could He be with His Father and at the same time dwelling in the womb of flesh?

This is the demanding question; how did He receive His dwelling?

And if the heretics say, because He is in up high and in down below He has the power to divide Himself to be in the womb and up high.

Then His will precedes His nature which is from eternity; then He is subject to His will and it limits His nature.

And if His will has the power to resist and to subjugate His nature, then He changes every hour as His will desires.

And if His will could rule over His nature as it desires, hence, where is His existence that His nature merited eternally?

O you who are deprived of light and follow the path of darkness!

Let this blasphemy go after the impudence of the heretics,

Because they lowered the Being into contempt when they limited Him in the womb of the daughter of man.

O you who are deprived of light and follow the path of darkness,

How could a self-existence nature be limited by His creation?

And if He is limited by what He made, like the saying of the heretics,

Then His hand-made is greater than Himself, if it can limit His nature.

How did the nature that is weaker than the spirit receive composition?

Is He in His own nature or in a nature not of His own?

Come! Explain to us your mysteries, You filthied with uncircumcised hearts;

And teach us how to confess on the Word that became flesh?

Or, explain how the Word dwelt in the members?

Or prepare your weapons and let us make war, and we shall see whose victory it will be?

Gather all your arrows and stretch the strings of your bows;

And put the Word that became flesh as the target, and let us see who will hit?

All the fight is over the Word that became flesh;

And as I know that is why you prepared your weapon against us.

You want to fight us with your master's weapon,

He is the one who cast the weapon and armed you against the Word that is from the Father.

Come with your Egyptian master, and we demand the  power of word

To see how the created began to be a Creator!

Is it that He began to form Himself, or He thus began to be?

Or, is it that someone else is who formed and He was afar from


If He is formed then He does not exist, and if He exists it was not now.

That the Self existence cannot accept formation after His existence.

He became flesh as you say; was it a part of Him or His whole:

How could a nature that gained no formation to be divided?

If His whole was composed, then His whole was limited;

And He was limited from everywhere and He merely dwelt in the womb.

If this is so, where is that that He is infinite?

The womb of flesh did limit Him according to the craft you formed.

And if it is from Him that He was composed, and from Him remained in His nature;

Where is the equality if He is divided in His nature?

If the Word became flesh, we ask whose flesh is it?

Did He bring it down with Him from the Height or is it the flesh of man?

If it was His qnooma that became flesh and He took no flesh from Mary, who then helped our nature- that He became flesh in that of His own?

Void is the Promise that was given to David, and by an assumed name was He called the Son of David, while He is not.

Who benefitted, O you mortals, from the Word that became flesh?

That He by His nature became flesh, and our nature remained in its fall.

How, then, does He stop the sentence of death from us,

If He did not take flesh from Mary and assist our mortal body?

The Word took body from Mary and dwelt in it,

And this appeals to the learned, and the truth is a witness to their words.

For, it is impossible for the Selfexistence to become flesh by its Qnooma,

And the becoming of the flesh is afar from the Existence that has no beginning.

Why is the veil of cunning spread over your words?

Reveal to us the goal of your opinions and explain like Arius. Your words and your utterances strengthen and support him,

When he renounced the Existence of the Son and called Him a slave and a servant.

This is all the struggle of Arius- the disciple of deceit-

To make the Son inferior to the Father and to count Him among His created beings.

You aim at his goal, even you, 0 heretics!

Who conceal in a uniform the wickedness that is hidden in your words.

Get out of the flock you insolents; in the form of lambs do not drive people astray;

You corrupted the distinction of the two natures that became one.

Your ungodly blasphemy went up to the height of heights,  

And brought down the Being from His term and tied Him with the ropes of members.

Listen and hear you Heaven and Earth the blasphemy that the ungodly spoke-

They limited and confined within the womb the unconceivable Existence. Like the shield at a battle, they seized onto this word-

That the Word composed Himself and became flesh as it is written.

O teachers of novelty! how He became you accepted,

And that He dwelt in us you forgot and you never examined its sense? John said, 'He dwelt in us '. Who in who did dwell?

Show us clearly the dwelling of the two that became one?

If he said of the dwelling, then, that that he became in us is demanded. It is possible then to dwell, even though, there is not that of coming into existence.

If of that He dwelt in some other, then, the formation is extra.

And this fits His nature to dwell and not to be limited.

Therefore come you listener, examine my words whether they are right;

And by the scale of your mind, weigh my words if they deviate. Do not be disturbed by hearing the words that are said by means of antiphonies;

They are not of research but rather a desire for profit.

The desire that is full of benefits, in which the hope of our life is hidden; That brings us closer to our nature, for the respect of the image that it lost. 

Our struggle is for this - that the word did not inferiorate by the dwelling,

But rather took our nature and dignified it by the glory of His greatness.

This is the question of the dwelling that we examined with the heretics; That the Existence was not inferiorated by the dwelling in humanity.

That He became is that He dwelt,and that He dwelt is that He took flesh;

And He covered the splendor of His greatness with the garment of the mortal body.

The Self-existence Word built a shrine of a body for Himself and dwelt in it; 

It was not Him that received composition as the blasphemy of the heretics;

He was not limited by His nature to be brought towards composition; 

Neither the shrine that He built for Himself could limit His Nature.

He did not dwell by His nature. He took from us.

But rather the dwelling ofRis will by the oneness without distinction.

The Word weaved a garment of flesh to cover His greatness with;

For the man to see through man the image of the glory of His greatness. 

A promise that could not be breached He promised Abraham and David; 

And He accomplished it now by deed, by the principle from the house of David.

The Word is not the son of David O heretics! What are you arguing?

The Son of David is of our kind that the Word took and dwelt in it.

All His will He accomplished - the Word in the body and dwelt in it; 

While His will by it was limited, His nature was not. 

His whole was in it by His will, and by His nature in it and everywhere;

This is proper for a Maker- not to be limited by the make of His hands.

The body is a make of His own which He willed to be His dwelling; 

And that it did not limit His nature,He dwelt in it wholly by His will.

The heretics might strive with our words as they are used to;

How could you call the Maker and the made as one person?

The made we call a shrine the Word built for His dwelling;

And the Only One we call the maker,Him Who willed to dwell in His hand-made.

Like soul and body that are co-equal,and are called one person,

The soul is a nature of living, and the body a mortal nature.

The two that distinguish one from another are called one person;

The Word the nature of existence,and the body the nature of humanity. 

One created and one Creator; they are one by individuality;

The soul is contained in the body, and its deed is beyond the body.

While the body is at one place, the motion ofthe soul is in every direction.  

The Word had dwelt in the body, yet, He was in the up high and in the deep.

His manhood was limited; His divinity was in every direction; 

The soul is not affected when the members suffer.

Neither did the Divinity suffer by the passions of the body in which He dwelt;

And if the soul does not suffer though it is a made like the body;

How is it for the Existence whose nature is more sublime than the passions to suffer?

The soul suffers with the body by love and not by nature. 

And they attribute the passions of the body to the soul, metaphorically;

He made him one with Him in gloryythe man that He took from us.

And because of His love towards him, He took his defects onto Himself;

The soul dwells in the body and the spectators do not see it.

Though it is limited by its nature, the eyes of flesh did not see it;

The Word also dwelt in our nature, yet, He was not limited by our nature.

That it was a dwelling of the Will and not a dwelling of nature,

The evidence is in our natute- that two natures became one.

One that lives, the other mortal; one hidden and the other manifested; Come along O heretics, we demand the question of duty.

Lower down your words and know your feeble nature.

Let us cast away the question of Existence-for, Existence is incomprehensible;

Let us talk about the son of our kind, that the Self-existence took and dwelt in him.

He dwelt in him but He did not limit His substance; His nature is not apt to be limited;

The mortal suffered in his nature, and the passions did not touch the Existence.

A rational image He built for Himself, through whom to show His power;

So that the rational will see Him and they will dignify the hidden by the manifested.

In the Holy of Holies of His secrecy the Self-existence secretly dwells;

And by the mediator of the son of our kind we see the image of His glory.

For this He chose him and dwelt in him, for the hidden to be revealed by the manifested;

And at the threshold of His manifestaion we worship His hidden nature.

He made him the lord of His house and the authority on His earnings;

And subdued to him the height and the depth of the rational and the irrational alike.

By Him our created image that was filthied by sin was renewed;

And it was, actually, accomplished with us, when He called us the image of His own.

Him they worship, both, the watchers and the human beings, like a clear image of a king,

They admire what they see, instead of the hiddeness of the only one. Listen with reason and understand,

O I istener, those that I repeated;

Do not be disturbed by the thoughts on the Word that became flesh.

I have prepared for you the path by words, come and follow my sayings;

For, at the end of the road that I have prepared for you, You shall find the fountain of life.

Glorify the Self-existence in His hiddeness, by the manifested He took for

His dwelling, and Dignify the King by His image, for, the King by His image is dignified.

Because of the difficulty of the way that leads towards His Existence without beginning,

He prepared for us the way towards, His hiddeness through a son of our kind as a guide.

Since the nature of the created cannot observe the concealed Being,

By the image He composed, He showed us the beautiful glory of His hiddeness.

By the envoy He took from us, He captured the love of the created beings;

And by the mediator of our kind He appeased us with His greatness.

This is the cause of His coming- to renew our making,

And to tighten the peace that was loosened by the means of our principle.

For our consolation He built in a shrine of flesh and dwelt,

For us, to worship, through external sanctuary, the hidden Holy of Holies.

The external sanctuary of His body we see by the eye of flesh;

And the Holy of Holies of His hiddeness by the spiritual motions of the soul

By the veil of Adam's body, those up high and those down below were stunned;

For, the created beings are not allowed to see the Holy of the Existence.

There, the path of life is prepared; come you heretics and tread on, And do not be stumbled in the way by your divided opinions.

With our confession of the Existence we do not mix doubt,

By the Son being co-equal with His Begetter we do not inferiorate Him into weaknesses.

We confess that the Word wore flesh, and He willed to dwelt in our nature;

And that the shrine of flesh that He dwelt in did not limit His nature.

He dwelt in it in whole and by His will, and abided His whole by His existence;

And namely He took his defects and made him share Him His glories.

Let us come we in-debtors, the sons of Adam, and pay our gratitude

To the Good who made our kind share with Him the glories of His greatness.



This page was last updated on 09/25/15.