The Acts of Barnabas

The Acts of Barnabas
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The Travels and Martyrdom of St. Barnabas the Apostle

SINCE FROM THE DESCENT of the presence of our Saviour Jesus Christ, the unwearied and benevolent and mighty Shepherd and Teacher and Physician, I beheld and saw the ineffable and holy and unspotted mystery of the Christians, who hold the hope in holiness, and who have been sealed; and since I have zealously served Him, I have deemed it necessary to give account of the mysteries which I have heard and seen.

I John, accompanying the holy apostles Barnabas and Paul, being formerly a servant of Cyrillus the high priest of Jupiter, but now having received the gift of the Holy Spirit through Paul and Barnabas and Silos, who were worthy of the calling, and who baptized me in Iconium. After I was baptized, then, I saw a certain man standing clothed in white raiment; and he said to me: “Be of good courage, John, for assuredly thy name shall be changed to Mark, and thy glory shall be proclaimed in all the world. The darkness in thee has passed away from thee, and there has been given to thee understanding to know the mysteries of God.”

And when I saw the vision, becoming greatly terrified, I went to the feet of Barnabas, and related to him the mysteries which I had seen and heard from that man. And the Apostle Paul was not by when I disclosed the mysteries. And Barnabas said to me: “Tell no one the miracle which thou hast seen. For by me also this night the Lord stood, saying, ‘Be of good courage: for as thou hast given thy life for my name to death and banishment from thy nation, thus also shall thou be made perfect. Moreover, as for the servant who is with you, take him also with thyself; for he has certain mysteries.'” Now then, my child, keep to thyself the things which thou hast seen and heard; for a time will come for thee to reveal them.