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The Apocryphal Abraham: The Trials of Abraham

by Josef Miyasato

The Apocryphal Abraham (Abridged)[1]

The Trials of Abraham

An Experiment Upon the Word[2]


Adapted from the confirmed,[3] and the imagined by Josef Firmage Miyasato


“It is commonly supposed that what faith produces is no work of art but a crude and vulgar effort only for clumsier natures; yet the truth is quite otherwise. The dialectic of faith is the most refined and most

remarkable of all dialectics. It has an elevation...[that] is beyond me, for the marvel I cannot perform but

only be amazed at.” Soren Kierkegaard, “Fear and Trembling”

“My intention is to retell some of the narrative of the [patriarch] within the ambiance of [his] world...”

Chaim Potok, “Wanderings: History of the Jews”


NIMROD IS VISITED BY EVIL GODS


As Nimrod, grandson of Ham, the son of Noah, slept he was visited by El koneh aratz[4] and Sin.[5]

They stood majestically before him. Sin stood nine cubits and a span. His black beard was as long as a

lion’s tale and as striking as a lion’s mane. He wore large gold earrings in the shape of the ankh. He was

draped in purple and scarlet with a solid gold sheath that hung from his hip. The hilt of his sword was

blinding. It seemed to be the source of all of his light and power. The hilt was made of pure silver. It was

encrusted with lapis lazuli, star rubies, and sapphires. He held onto a large scepter topped by the head of a black onyx jackal. His shoulders were large enough that Elkenah’s powerful talons rested upon his right shoulder with plenty of space on either side.


Elkenah’s eyes were pitch black caves with thin ribbons of white spanning east-west. His curved beak

was of purple ivory. Long dark feathers hung from the crown of his large head and stood on end, giving

his face a terrifying amplification. His muscular wings sat docile for the moment. Regardless, Nimrod felt the possibility of being ripped apart by the sheer presence of the God who created the earth. 


Elkenah’s speckled feathers bristled as he took the lowly Nimrod in. Nimrod dropped his scepter with a clang and prostrated himself before them. He cried out, “Have mercy on me, for I am a man consumed with weakness.”


Nimrod found himself at the base of a red mountain far away from his gods. Sin stared down at him,

pointed his finger and said, “Little child, you are a man of a wavering tongue and an uncommitted heart.”

Elkenah let out a piercing screech and rose from his purchase. His wings unfolded as if he was opening up

the expanse of heaven. He swooped down with a mighty gust. In an instant he was upon Nimrod’s chest.

Nimrod lost all power in his legs. He would have fallen but he was being held up by Elkenah’s talons as

they tore into his chest. Elkenah thrust his beak into Nimrod’s mouth and grasped his tongue like it was a worm. He flew back to Sin’s outstretched arm carrying Nimrod’s tongue in his beak and heart in his

talons. Sin devoured Nimrod’s heart. Elkenah swallowed his tongue.


Nimrod found himself in a large city. He was a great ziggurat, 5,433 cubits and 2 palms reaching to

heaven. Inscribed on his walls was the title, “Gateway of God.[6]” Lush gardens and trees covered his

balconies and hung down towards the people gathered below. He was topped by the holy shrine of Sin.

People marveled at his beauty. Peeking from the fissure in the ground below was a small vine. It climbed

as it grew, grasping onto his stone walls. He tried to chop the vine down but his edges were dull. He tried to drink up all of the waters but he had no power to drink. He tried to blot out the sun but it shone brightly on the vine which continued to climb until it began to choke out his gardens.


Nimrod sat upon his throne and surveyed the feast in his honor. His tables were filled to overflowing

with roasted goats, chickens, and seven young bullock. His harem danced while he drank from his finest

reserves. He continued to drink but he could not get drunk. He ate two chickens, then a goat, two pigs,

and finally the bullock. He was famished. The more he ate the hungrier he grew. His stomach cramped

with pain. He was starving to death. A comely man with a short, gray beard and broad shoulders sat

opposite of him. He held onto an unidentified piece of fruit. Nimrod ordered the man to eat the pig. He

refused. Nimrod ordered him to drink the wine. He refused. Nimrod ordered him to give of his fruit. He

refused. Nimrod fell to the ground. The man stood up. He was wearing the garment of Adam.[7] Without a word he walked away. The dead animals rose up and followed after him.


Nimrod stood in a large empty valley with his armies behind him. The comely man stood before him

with a serious look on his face. He was wearing the garment of Adam. He carried no sword. Nimrod

commanded him to give him the garment but he refused. Nimrod slapped the man but the man just turned his cheek. He raised his sword to slay the man he couldn’t control his swing. He missed the man with every stroke as if he were drunken. Standing behind the man were countless men and women. They

carried banners, but no arms, yet they were terrible. Nimrod grew fearful and wanted to flee but could

hear the screech of El koneh aratz. He was embarrassed and then furious. He turned to give the signal for his army to attack but there was no commotion behind him. He turned around and saw a valley of empty bones.


NIMROD’S EVIL COUNCIL


Nimrod woke up troubled. He sent for his council and dressed himself in the garment of Adam.[8] He

ordered the slaying of three sheep. As Nimrod sat on his throne in the temple of El koneh aratz he told his council, “I have received a prophecy.” He recounted his dreams. Chief among his priestly circle was the Priest Elkenah, his asipu.[9] The Priest spoke, “I shall perform the extispicy.[10]” As he read the entrails he entered into a trance. He swung his head from side to side. The amulets hanging around his neck gained momentum and were soon swinging wildly around his head in concentric circles. He recited his incantation in a fury of spittle. His face was red and his eyes narrowed as he directed his gaze into the third eye of his king. He raised his veined arms and spoke, “A man would be born who would give a lie to our religion, with enough power to overthrow your throne. He will be a mighty man, impossible to

contend with.”[11]


Nimrod gripped the arms of his throne with his powerful hands and bent forward as if in pain. He

groaned in the agony of despair and said, “My fate is sealed.” He straightened up and shouted. “No. No.

No. But it must be! It must be the will of the gods. Yet, they have warned me! What is to be done? It is

the god’s will that this can be undone, else why show it to me? Why warn me?” He asked again, “And

what of these garments of our father Adam? Are these not invincible?[12] But they are not my skin. What is to be done? I alone bear the load of the gods.[13]” He held onto his amulet and began to pray. He

looked at his council and cried, “What say ye, my priesthood?”


The council conferred and said, “Our King, our god Nimrod, son of Noah, great hunter of souls, savior

from the flood and the jealous myth of the One True God, wearer of the garment and holder of the

priesthood of Ham, unifier of man with the Many True Gods. They have your favor. Great hunter of

souls, our unanimous advice is that thou should build a great house and set thy seal upon it. Send out a

proclamation that in the whole of thy realm all the pregnant women shall repair thither with their

midwives. When the days of the woman to be delivered are fulfilled and the child is born, it shall be the

duty of the midwife to kill it, if it be a boy. If the child be a girl then let it live. The mother shall receive

gifts and costly garments, and a herald shall proclaim, “Thus is done unto the woman who bears a

daughter![14]”


The King nodded with hope in his eyes. “This shall be the great house of Sin. We shall destroy the liar.

We shall open the gateway of the gods to defeat the flood that the jealous god sends forth.” But he still

remained troubled. “This is the will of the gods and yet we must do something more than lay snares for

rabbits. We must use the cunning of the gods.” The Priest of Elkenah stepped forth and spoke, “We must

invoke Lamashtu.”


The council gasped. Nimrod looked narrowly at his chief priest.


The Priest of Sin demanded, “Why do you invoke the name of a demon in this temple?”


“She is also a demigod. She has a purpose. One which fate has called for. She prays on pregnant

woman and children. She will spare them not. The gods have warned us of the end of our religion. We

must fight fire with destruction. We are justified in this thing.”


The Priest of Sin cried, “We shall bring evil upon us!”


The Priest of Elkenah laughed, “It is too late. We have been warned by Almighty El koneh aratz and

Everlasting Sin themselves.”


The Priest of Pazuzu[15] said, “The son of Hanbi shall bring famine upon us.”


Nimrod stroked the garment of Adam and said, “We can survive famine. We cannot survive the end of

our religion. And I cannot survive death. Who is this disrupter?”


The Priest of Elkenah spoke, “The gods have created all things for the good of man, including,

Lamashtu. We shall stop this lie to deny the floods of a jealous god or else we perish.”


Nimrod stood erect with his scepter raised high. He spoke, “As your High Priest, and second only to

the gods, I say unto you, that this thing must be. Lamashtu will serve us in our great cause of our god and our religion.”


Nimrod entered the Circle of Priests and the Priest of Elkenah led the incantation, “Lamashtu comes

up from the swamp, is fierce, terrible, forceful, destructive. Powerful: she is a goddess, is awe-inspiring.

Her feet are those of an eagle, her hands mean decay. Her fingernails are long, her armpits unshaven. She is dishonest, a devil, the daughter of Anu.[16]”


THE BIRTH OF ABRAM


At the end of three months Emtelai’s countenance grew pale. The angel told her in a dream, “A son

will be born. He will be called Abram, for an exalted father[17] he will be, for he will be a type and a

shadow of things to come. Through him God will bind the heavens to the earth, lest the whole earth be

wasted at His coming.” But Emtelai could no longer hide her fate from Terah. By the King’s decree the

midwives had killed seventy-thousand male children as they waited upon their mother’s milk.


The angels wondered at the great evil of Nimrod and lamented, “He searches Raukeeyang[18] for the

great governing bodies. He kills the innocent in search of the man of the covenant. Is there no stopping

Nimrod? His sin doth exceed Cain.” But God heard Emtelai and would prove the angels’ fears unjust.

Terah saw his wife by the light of the moon and said, “My wife is big with child therefore we must

honor the decree of our god, Nimrod, and go up.”


“Not so. Every year I suffer this malady.”


“But you are surely with child. Show me thy body.” When he passed his hand over her stomach God

pulled the child up until it lay beneath her breasts and Terah was convinced of his wrong.[19]


When her time approached Emtelai left the city in the dark of night. She wandered through the desert

and could hear wolves in the distance. The moon shone bright and she made her way to a cave. She fell

down in great agony but was greeted by an angel who comforted her and she was delivered.


Remembering God, she named the boy, Abram. The angel said, he shall be a shield and protector. She

greatly desired to bring the child back. But the angel read her thoughts and said, “If you take him back

Nimrod will slay him at thy breasts. If you stay here you shall die.” Emtelai left her child in the care of

God with great sorrow in her heart.


NIMROD, THE PRIEST OF ELKENAH, AND THE DEMON


Nimrod walked upon his tower with the Priest of Elkenah in the eventide. Nimrod’s countenance fell

as he saw a shadowy figure crouched on the balcony. He placed his hand on his sword. The Priest of

Elkenah whispered, “She’s come.”


Lamashtu crouched on the railing of the balcony before them. Water dripped from Lamashtu to the

stone below, leaving a dark and growing stain. She smelled of cooked meat and urine. Her eyes were

milky and bloodshot. Her dirty hair was matted in large clumps. Dandruff fell about her as she shifted

aggressively from side to side. Tattered rags barely covered her body. Her skin sagged from her bones.

Greasy hair protruded from her armpits. She held leprosy in her palms and wrists. Her nails were long,

dirty, and broken. Her stomach looked bloated. The skin of her feet had a scale-like hide the hue of lard.


The knuckles of her naked feet looked swollen. Her large toes curled like talons over the railing.

The Priest spoke, “Terrible goddess, drinker of blood, what great blessings have you for us?”


“The men children have been slain unto the count of eighty-thousand but you have not reached all,

great god-King. Nimrod has enemies abroad and in the sky. Your tower must be completed to blot out

Jehovah. But this will do no good if the enemy is allowed to grow into a man.”


Nimrod asked, “Can’t you destroy him?”


Lamashtu snapped, “I devour the children you give me. My bounds are set.”


The Priest of Elkenah said, “Then our work is not done.”


Nimrod Lamented, “At this rate we will have no armies.”


Lamashtu snarled, “That is not my problem. This is yours.”


ABRAM RETURNS TO UR


Ahiman walked Abram to the city of Ur. Ahiman embraced Abram and said, “Go with God and he

shall be with thee to preserve the earth for His coming.” He bid Abram farewell and departed. Abram

wept and was met at the roadside by a seller of idols who said, “Peace be with thee. Where is thy mother and father? Have they come to purchase the gods of Nimrod or Pharaoh?” He said this suspecting him to be a foreigner in the land as very few boys below the age of ten were in the land of Ur.


Abram returned, “With thee be peace. My father is a man of the Most-High God, and my mother an

angel.”


“Run off with you. You speak nonsense from before the flood. Your generation has perished with your

God.” The man swung a broom at Abram. He walked further into the city. Days later he sat begging in the street when Emtelai approached. She handed him a handful of dates. “Peace be with thee. I have seen you now three days in this spot. Where is thy mother and father?”


“With thee be peace. My father is a man of the Most-High God, and my mother an angel.”


“Where are they now?”


“My mother flew back to heaven and my father is in search of God’s will.”


“Where are you from?”


“I was born in a cave in the desert far from the gods of Egypt.”

“How old are you?”


“I am but nine years.”


“What is thy name?”


“Abram.”


Emtelai fell on his neck and wept. “The God of my father’s has preserved you. I have sought you with

sorrow and tears.”


“Am I thy son that though should display such joy?”


“Yes. I am thy mother. Come with me where it is safe and I will tell you my sad tale. Thy father Terah

is not home.”


TERAH TELLS NIMROD ABOUT ABRAM


Terah was a prince and a magnate in the house of the king. He was a practitioner of magic, and a

skilled maker and seller of idols. Emtelai sat at meat with Terah and told him of finding Abram. She said,

“He is our son. The gods have smiled upon us and preserved him from the hand on Nimrod.” Terah’s

heart warmed yet he feared Nimrod greatly. He cried, “The terrible god Pazuzu has protected my son. But this great evil be upon me and betwixt my god Nimrod.”


Terah asked Abram, “My son, is there a God beside Nimrod?”


“Yes, father. The God of the heavens and the God of the earth, He is also the God of Nimrod, son of

Cush.”


Abram, having learned the truth of his lineage tried eagerly to please his father. Terah went to the

royal palace and prostrated himself before Nimrod. Nimrod gave him permission to rise and state his

request. Terah related all that his wife had said, omitting her initial deception in hiding the child in the

cave.


Nimrod greatly feared. “How was it that you, a prince, knew not of your wife’s pregnancy? What is

this great deception you have pulled over your king?”


“Oh, Great King, have mercy upon me. The terrible Pazuzu has protected this child. I was on my way

to take my wife to the Place of Lamashtu when Pazuzu interfered and hid him behind her breasts.”

“Is this so? And what says Elkenah?”


The Priests of Elkenah and Pazuzu stepped forward. They placed a black cloak over their heads and

hummed deeply. The Priest of Elkenah was deeply troubled and worried that his earlier incantation had

not worked. The Priests spoke to one another in a hidden tongue. They removed the cloak and the Priest of Pazuzu spoke, “It is so. Pazuzu has acted to protect this child.”


The king asked, “What does this mean?”


The Priest of Elkenah said, “It means the will of the gods. We shall watch him closely. But perhaps he

will save us from the liar. If he will not, we will destroy him.”


Terah bowed gratefully and went home to raise Abram in the religion of Nimrod.


ABRAM THE ICONOCLAST


Though Terah loved Abram, he proved troublesome. Though Abram was obedient in every other way

he would he not honor Nimrod by bowing down to dumb idols. When Abram turned twenty Terah fell ill.

He asked Abram and his brother, Haran, to mind the store for him. But when a person would come to buy and idol from Abram and asked the price, Abram would say, “Three manehs,” and then question in turn, “How old art though?” “Fifty years” the reply would be. Abram would tease, “Thou are fifty years of age, and yet thou wouldst worship an idol which I made but today?” The customer would depart without the idol in hand. Soon Terah heard what Abram had done and chastised him, even threatening to tell Nimrod if Abram did not stop for Terah feared the displeasure of the gods. He said, “How can I have my son flaunt and tease the gods while my god sits upon his throne?” Haran took over the duties of selling the idols.


Terah grew even sicker. Abram sat in his workshop fashioning idols for the store. He prayed to the

God of Adam and Noah for the health of his father but Haran heard him. Haran told his father and Terah

forbade him from praying to his God on threat of telling Nimrod. Abram took two idols and tied a rope

around their necks. With their faces turned downward he dragged them along the ground, crying aloud all the time, “Who will buy a dumb idol? Your idols cannot protect you when they can’t even protect

themselves from this humiliation. It has a mouth but it speaks not; ears but it hears not; eyes but it sees

not, feet but it walks not.[20]”


THE RITUAL SACRIFICE OF ABRAM


Upon Terah’s recovery two years later, his business was barely holding on due to the reputation of

Abram. He had gained a following and many began to believe in the God of Abraham. “My son, are there

any gods beside the god Nimrod?” “There is the one true God and Nimrod is none.” In the dead of night

Terah delivered Abram up to Nimrod’s guards. Nimrod confined Abram to prison where he sat for two

years without a word as to his fate.


Nimrod conferred with his Priests as to what to do with Abram. “The Priest of Sin spoke, “At the Feast

of Sin we shall be visited by Pharaoh, King of Egypt. We shall be partaking in some of his ceremonies.

They will be led by the Priest of Elkenah.” The Priest of Elkenah was in Pharaoh’s court having sought

confederacy with Pharaoh, having angered Nimrod when it was discovered that his enchantment failed to kill Abram when he was in the cave. The Priest continued, “We shall bring Abram out to view the fertility ritual using Abrahamites. If he objects, he shall be put to death.”


On the day of the Feast of Sin, Abram sat beside his father, as a prisoner. His father was dressed in the

cloak of the Priesthood of Pharaoh as were Nimrod and all of his priests and princes. the Priest of Sin

presented three virgins, daughters of Onitah, who were to act out Ashertu’s seduction of Ba’al. As they

refused to prostrate themselves before the idols, Abram cried out, “May the God in heaven bless and

preserve you for your faith.” The priests grabbed Abram and gagged his mouth. The Priest of Sin handed

the three virgins over to the Priest of Elkenah who sacrificed them on the altar.


The priests dragged Abram to the altar and tied him down. The Priest of Elkenah smiled at Nimrod and

raised the knife, still slick with blood. Pharaoh gave his consent and Nimrod nodded his head. The priest

lowered the knife but dropped it suddenly. He cried out and fell to the earth. Blood flowed from his

mouth. Abram’s bands were loosed as an angel took him by the hand and told him to flee. The altar broke into pieces with a giant crack. The idols of the gods of Elkenah, Libnah, Mahmackrath, Korash, and

Pharaoh smashed as if by an invisible hammer. The Priest of Sin fell to his knees and was knocked off the podium so that he was trampled to death.


ABRAHAM OFFERS ISAAC[21]


v1. “And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham:

and he said, Behold, here I am.” But what are these things? A long sought-after son was just the “final

test.” God did test Abraham three times. The first trial of his life was in being a son that his father did not want but whom he loved still. The second trial of his life was in wanting a son but being denied by nature while the God of nature held back His hand until the very last moment, the third-watch so to speak. “And Abraham and Sarah were old and well stricken in age; and it ceased to be with Sarah after the manner of women” (Gen. 18:11). Post-menopausal Sarah who knew her body well, laughed at the Lord who came to them as a herald, “The Lord appeared unto him in the plains of Mamre...[as] three men...who “said unto him...Sarah thy wife shall have a son. ...Therefore Sarah laughed within herself” and her heart cried out in its pain, the sarcasm, the cynicism, “After I am waxed old shall I have pleasure...?” (Gen. 18:1–2, 10,

12).


And it was early in the morning, during the first watch when Abraham woke, restless. He couldn’t

sleep. He dreamed of the Priest of Elkenah holding onto his ankle with his clammy, cold skin. The black

blade was raised to cut out his heart. His father couldn’t watch but he had given Abraham up to Nimrod.

The Priest of Sin had promised Terah that Abram could be converted and saved so he had allowed

Nimrod’s guards to take him.


The shadow of something higher was on Abraham’s mind. He turned further away from his tent. The

sky was clear but his mind was not. The Lord had woken him but it wasn’t to relive the trauma. He

thought of Terah again. He had promised him that he would return from Haran but he never saw him

again. Abraham knew why he stayed. He could never leave Sin behind. And so he died serving lesser

gods. Abram could hear the lowing of the cattle in the distance. No, he needn’t droop in the sins of his

father. It was the Lord who had woken him. The Lord wanted him to know something. Abraham fell on

his knees and said, “Here I am Lord.”


v2. “And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land

of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.”

And Abraham fell on his face and wept. He rent his clothes and refused to be comforted. When Sarah

saw him, the silence divided them. Abraham took Isaac and fell upon his neck. He wept and bathed his

child in his tears.


Sarah sat down with Abraham to sup. He refused to look upon her. She tried to console him but knew

he would not be consoled. She pleaded, “My husband there is a desert between us. Why do you not eat?


Did you dream of your father?”


“Not so. The Lord has commanded a hard thing and I will do. But the Lord provides no comfort in this

thing.”


“What is it my Lord?”


But he refused to answer her.


In the evening the Spirit fell upon his heart but he refused to be comforted. But even still, his

conviction was certain. There would be no wrestle with God this time. He would surrender to God’s

terrible demands. The Lord had always preserved him and set him apart. His promises would be fulfilled

in this life or the next.


At night he held Sarah and she wept in silence. Something had changed. What had God commanded

Abraham to do? That he would do for certain, but what terrible price did obedience exact? Abraham wept into Sarah’s hair and she was afraid.


v.3 “And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took two of his young men

with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the

place of which God had told him.”


The party traveled in silence. On the second day they arose early. Abraham walked slowly, saying, “I

am but an old man.” The party adjusted. When they were not silent, they prayed. Isaac sang and the men

joined in. Abraham hummed under his breath and prayed in silence. Other times he wept. He spoke of

leaving his home in the wilderness under the watchful eye of God. He spoke about obedience to God and the austerity of sand. He spoke of things behind him when he was Abram. He spoke of the endless

expanse of sand. He wondered what the kernel held inside of it. He spoke of the promise of sand and

stars. He wondered at the sky, was the edge of the universe where they stood, or was it truly endless?

Were they seeing all that had come before or all that would eventually come?


At night Abraham sat next to Isaac and said, “You are a young man. You are strong. I am not like you.

I am weak. I do not do that which God desires. I am uncharitable. I am selfish.” Isaac hugged his father.

Abraham spoke, “Squeeze me to death.”


Isaac said, “You speak from your heart, truly.”


Abraham replied, “My heart is far from Him. I have failed God, then.”


Isaac countered, “You have not failed if you travel to your destination in doubt. You still travel.”


Abraham answered, “You see, I doubt. How can I know I will do His will?”


Isaac smiled and shook his head, “Father, you have always gone forward in the faith of Christ though

you don’t know the outcome. But, how should you? Do you presume to have the mind of God? Do you

presume to have the eyes of God? No, you see the desert before you but you do not know whence it came and where it goes. It is but a sea of sand, not glass, shimmering in the eternal sunshine. Do you not graze like a beast? How does a beast know more than the master upon its back? Does a beast survey the land nand equate the future? No. A beast goes where the master leads. We are no more than beasts. But your master and mine doth call us to a task, though terrifying, we go as a man in a dream. And when we wake, we know where we stand. But for now, we are dreamers in a harsh land and the God who mines the salt has called us forward.”


That night Abraham dreamed he was holding a cup. The Savior was looking down holding the pitcher

just above the goblet. The Savior spoke and said, “This take, in remembrance of my blood which was

spilled for you. This do in remembrance of me.” Abraham watched as the wine flowed from the cup. The

Savior poured a second but He never stopped.


vs.4–6 “On the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off. And Abraham said

unto his young men, Abide ye here with the ass; and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come

again to you. And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it upon Isaac his son; and he

took the fire in his hand, and a knife; and they went both of them together.”


vs.7–8 “And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my

son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering? And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together.”


As Abraham walked he saw the face of his father and his idols made of wood and stone, mute, but still

calling for the blood of those three virgins. He saw the Priest of Elkenah and could smell his spoiled flesh.


El Mindor still had the blood of the virgins on his garb when they grabbed Abram. Having been a prisoner of Nimrod he had witnessed their death and still would not bow down himself to these gods. The final proof of their diabolical nature was their ultimate demand of human flesh.


Abraham began to plead with God, “Jehovah, why has thou abandoned me? Where is the angel of the

Lord?” As they ascended mount Moriah Isaac repeated the phrase, “We go without but it mattereth not,


God will provide himself a lamb. Will God provide a lamb without blemish and without spot, a firstborn?

We do nothing but show up? My father, this test is not quite like those which you have endured but it is a new thing, isn’t it?”


v.9 “And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid

the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood.”


“These...victims were wholly consumed...The victim, if a large animal, was flayed and divided; the

pieces being placed above the wood on the altar, the skin only being left to the priest. The fire which

consumed the offerings was never allowed to go out, since they were slowly consumed...[22]”.


Abram “bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood.” Isaac cried as he spoke, “I

know what thou art doing and I surrender. I am thy son father, highly favored of God.” Abraham laid his

head on Isaac’s chest and sobbed as a little child. Isaac continued, “I had a dream last night. In it the

Savior offered me a cup. He told me that if I drank it, I would remain forever by his side. But he said that

if I drank it I would be brought as a lamb to the slaughter by my father. As I drank it I was transformed

into the Lamb. I looked down upon my people. The weight was too heavy. I could not bear it. When I

looked to my left I saw the Savior. He too was bound. He spoke and said, ‘This day you shall be with me

in paradise.’ This is my cup father.”


v.10 “And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son.” And he spoke to the

heavens, “There is no more to say, no more to pray. I have given you everything. I have consecrated my

life from the cave wherein thou did bless me with righteous parents. I have been preserved from Nimrod and the Priest of Elkenah. I have been absolved of my sins yet my natural heart cries out, do not take my son, but if it be thy will, thy will be done.” Abram began to lower the knife.


v.11–12 “And the angel of the Lord called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham: and

he said, Here am I.” And Abram recognized the words of the Lord, the Lamb of God. “And [the angel]

said, Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou anything unto him: for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from me.


v.13 “And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him a ram caught in a thicket by

his horns: and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son.”


V.15–18 “And the angel of the Lord called unto Abraham...for because thou hast done this thing, and

hast not withheld they son...That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed

as the stars in heaven...And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast

obeyed my voice.”





[1] This is a work of fan fiction based on the account of Abraham found in Genesis 17, 18, 22:1–13; The Pearl of Great Price, Abraham 1–2; and “The Legend of the Jews” by Louis Ginzberg.


[2] Stylistically: This work owes much to Louis Ginzberg’s, “Legends of the Jews,” with the caveat that my aim is to retell Abraham in the light of the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Spiritually: This work follows the example set forth by Neal A. Maxwell’s, “The Enoch Letters” (1979). I apply Maxwell’s fictional experiment with Enoch to Abraham, wherein Maxwell posited, “In our own time of increasing perplexity...and individual despair, it is important to realize that thousands...” of years ago, there lived a man who rejected the matrix of the material word with all of its sophistic props, existential traps, and very real consequences and sought God in the face of a blind and dogmatic culture and found Him, only to be tested and purified in the most excruciating manner; and show that if we can but do likewise we too can enjoy the fulness of the Abrahamic covenant. Philosophically: This work is an exploration of Kierkegaard’s dialectic of faith. “[T]he positive ideals of Christianity, such as faith, hope, joy and consolation, are always qualified by the negative determinants of Christian existence. The essentially Christian form of life is marked by the consciousness of sin, sacrifice, self-denial...suffering, and adversity. [T]he believer must neither seek to avoid these nor to give in to them entirely, but rather to understand that it is only through these negative conditions that one can experience the true nature of divine grace and give proper expression to the positive ideals of Christianity,” Steven M. Emmanuel, Book Review of “Living Christianly: Kierkegaard’s Dialectic of Christian Existence,” by Sylvia Walsh, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews, An Electronic Journal, December 12, 2010, https://ndpr.nd.edu/news/living-christianly-kierkegaard-s-dialectic-of-christian-existence/, accessed 11/20/19.


[3] This adaptation is confirmed in faith by the Spirit of prophecy and revelation, rooted in the writings of the Old Testament and the Pearl of Great Price; with an eye of faith, hope, charity, and wonder (imagined with the help of Jewish legends).


[4] “Elkenah is very likely the shortened form of the name of the Canaanite god El koneh aratz, meaning ‘God who created the earth’ (or ‘God, creator of earth.’), BMC Team, “The Idolatrous God of Elkenah,” August 15, 2019, Pearl of Great Price Central, https://www.pearlofgreatpricecentral.org/the-idolatrous-god-of-elkenah/ , accessed

11/20/19.


[5] Sin, also known as Nanna, is the patron deity of the city of Ur. Sin is the “Sumerian and Akkadian (Assyrian- Babylonian) moon God,” “Ur,” Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ur, accessed 11/19/19.


[6] Nimrod would go on to build the tower of Babel. This could have been a very large ziggurat. Babel means gateway of God, as it also means confusion. See “Fair Issues 73: Is the Tower of Babel historical or mythological?,” Fair Mormon Podcast, November 2, 2014, Ned Scarisbrick, https://www.fairmormon.org/blog/2014/11/02/fair-issues-73-is-the-tower-of-babel-historical-or-mythological, accessed 11/25/19.


[7] “The Legends of the Jews assure us that it was by virtue of owning this garment that Nimrod was able to claim

power to rule over the whole earth, and that he sat in his tower while men came and worshipped him,” Hugh Nibley,

Collected Works of Hugh Nibley, vol. 5, Part 2 (”Nibley Collected Works”), ch. 1, p. 169–171,

http://www.rockyespy.com/Doctrine/AdamGarment.html#, accessed 11/19/19.

[8] “Nimrod claimed his kinship on the ground of victory over his enemies; his priesthood, however, he claimed by virtue of possessing ‘the garment of Adam,’” Nibley Collected Works.


[9] Chief magician.


[10] The reading of animal entrails.


[11] Loius Ginzberg, translated by Henrietta Szold, “The Legend of the Jews: Ch. V. Abraham,” the Jewish Publication Society of America, 1909 (“Ginzberg Legend”),

http://www.swartzentrover.com/cotor/ebooks/misc/Legends/Legends%20of%20the%20Jews.pdf, accessed 11/01/19.


[12] “Pirke De-Rabbi Eliezer (c. 833) relates the Jewish traditions that Nimrod inherited the garments of Adam and Eve from his father Cush, and that these made him invincible.” “Nimrod,” Wikipedia,

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nimrod, accessed 11/25/19.


[13] Darci Clark, “Mesopotamian Theology and Religious Beliefs: Paper for Culture and History of Ancient Mesopotamia,” Semiramis-Speaks.com, May 31, 2012 (“Clark 2012”), http://semiramis-speaks.com/mesopotamian-theology-and-religious-rituals/, accessed 11/21/19.


[14] Ginzberg Legend.


[15] Pazazu was “the king of the demons of the wind...the bearer of storms and drought.” He is the son of the god Hanbi (the god of all evil forces). He was considered and enemy and rival of Lamashtu. See “Pazazu,” Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pazuzu, accessed 1/20/19.


[16] Clark 2012.


[17] A title of God, Himself.


[18] “[E]xpanse or the firmament of the heavens,” Fig. 4, from the Facsimile No. 2 from The Book of Abraham.


[19] Ginzberg Legend.


[20] Ginzberg Legend.


[21] Now we have come to the heart of the story. This section is derived from Genesis 22. The white heat of this experience must be reckoned with if we are to get a grasp on what kind of sacrifice Abraham was asked to go through. If we think we have gone the extra mile of faith and can’t go any further we might think of Abraham and then muster the courage to take yet one more step. See, Elder Melvin J. Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, before his death in 1939, “You remember the story of Abraham’s son came after long years of waiting and was looked upon by his father as more precious than all of his other possessions. Yet in the midst of his rejoicing, Abraham was told to...offer him as a sacrifice to the Lord. He obeyed. But can you imagine what was in the heart of Abraham on that occasion? What do you think he felt when he started away from Mother Sarah? What do you think was in his heart when he saw Isaac bidding good-bye to his mother to take that three-day journey to the appointed place where the sacrifice was to be made?,”

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/liahona/1980/01/abrahams-sacrifice?lang=eng, accessed 11/30/19.


[22] Jastrow Morris et al., “Burnt Offering,” JewishEncyclopedia.com,

http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/3847-burnt-offering, accessed 11/26/19.