ACTS OF ANDREW AND MATTHIAS (MATTHEW) Part I

ACTS OF ANDREW AND MATTHIAS (MATTHEW) Part I
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From “The Apocryphal New Testament”M.R. James-Translation and NotesOxford: Clarendon Press, 1924

IT WAS LONG THOUGHT that this must be an episode from the old Acts of Andrew: but Flamion’s study of that book has finally made it clear that there is no place for the tale in those Acts: and that our story is an early member of that which we call the Egyptian cycle: it is a tale of wonder with no doctrinal purpose.
Text
1 At that time all the apostles were gathered together and divided the countries among themselves, casting lots. And it fell to Matthias to go to the land of the anthropophagi. Now the men of that city ate no bread nor drank wine, but ate the flesh and drank the blood of men; and every stranger who landed there they took, and put out his eyes, and gave him a magic drink which took away his understanding.

2 So when Matthias arrived he was so treated; but the drink had no effect on him, and he remained praying for help in the prison.

3 And a light came and a voice: Matthias, my beloved, receive sight. And he saw. And the voice continued: I will not forsake thee: abide twenty-seven days, and I will send Andrew to deliver thee and all the rest. And the Saviour went up into heaven. Matthias remained singing praises; when the executioners came to take victims, he kept his eyes closed. They came and looked at the ticket on his hand and said: Three days more and we will slay him. For every victim had a ticket tied on his hand to show the date when his thirty days would be fulfilled.