The unclean spirit
5. AGAIN he said: When the unclean spirit is gone out of any, he walketh through dry places seeking rest, and finding none it saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out. And when he is come he findeth it empty, swept and garnished, for they asked not the Good Spirit to dwell within them, and be their eternal Guest. 6. Then he goeth and taketh with him seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there, and the last state of all such is worse than the first. Even so shall it be also unto this wicked generation, which refuseth entrance to the Spirit of God. 7. For I say unto you, whosoever blasphemeth the Son of Man, it shall be forgiven them; but whoso blasphemeth the Holy Spirit it shall not be forgiven them either in this age, or in the next, for they resist the Light of God, by the false traditions of men. Gospel of the Holy Twelve 45
“But that He is not pleased with sacrifices, is shown by this, that those who lusted after flesh were slain as soon as they tasted it, and were consigned to a tomb, so that it was called the grave of lusts. (Exodus) He then who at the first was displeased with the slaughtering of animals, not wishing them to be slain, did not ordain sacrifices as desiring them; nor from the beginning did He require them. For neither are sacrifices accomplished without the slaughter of animals, nor can the first-fruits be presented. But how is it possible for Him to abide in darkness, and smoke, and storm (for this also is written), who created a pure heaven, and created the sun to give light to all, and assigned the invariable order of their revolutions to innumerable stars? Thus, O Simon, the handwriting of God—I mean the heaven—shows the counsels of Him who made it to be pure and stable.
Chapter XVIII.—The Law to the Survivors.
“Since, therefore, the souls of the deceased giants were greater than human souls, inasmuch as they also excelled their bodies, they, as being a new race, were called also by a new name. (Demons) And to those who survived in the world a law was prescribed of God through an angel, how they should live. For being bastards in race, of the fire of angels and the blood of women, and therefore liable to desire a certain race of their own, they were anticipated by a certain righteous law. For a certain angel was sent to them by God, declaring to them His will, and saying:—
Chapter XIX.—The Law to the Giants or Demons.
“‘These things seem good to the all-seeing God, that you lord it over no man; that you trouble no one, unless any one of his own accord subject himself to you, worshipping you, and sacrificing and pouring libations, and partaking of your table, or accomplishing aught else that they ought not, or shedding blood, or tasting dead flesh, or filling themselves with that which is torn of beasts, or that which is cut, or that which is strangled, or aught else that is unclean. But those who betake themselves to my law, you not only shall not touch, but shall also do honour to, and shall flee from, their presence. For whatsoever shall please them, being just, respecting you, that you shall be constrained to suffer. But if any of those who worship me go astray, either committing adultery, or practising magic, or living impurely, or doing any other of the things which are not well-pleasing to me, then they will have to suffer something at your hands or those of others, according to my order. But upon them, when they repent, I, judging of their repentance, whether it be worthy of pardon or not, shall give sentence. These things, therefore, ye ought to remember and to do, well knowing that not even your thoughts shall be able to be concealed from Him.’
Chapter XX.—Willing Captives.
“Having charged them to this effect, the angel departed. But you are still ignorant of this law, that every one who worships demons, or sacrifices to them, or partakes with them of their table, shall become subject to them and receive all punishment from them, as being under wicked lords. And you who, on account of ignorance of this law, have been corrupted beside their altars, and have been satiated with food offered to them, have come under their power, and do not know how you have been in every way injured in respect of your bodies. But you ought to know that the demons have no power over any one, unless first he be their table-companion; since not even their chief can do anything contrary to the law imposed upon them by God, wherefore he has no power over any one who does not worship him; but neither can any one receive from them any of the things that he wishes, nor in anything be hurt by them, as you may learn from the following statement.
Chapter XVI.—Why They Wish to Possess Men.
“Now that the demons are desirous of occupying the bodies of men, this is the reason. They are spirits having their purpose turned to wickedness. Therefore by immoderate eating and drinking, and lust, they urge men on to sin, but only those who entertain the purpose of sinning, who, while they seem simply desirous of satisfying the necessary cravings of nature, give opportunity to the demons to enter into them, because through excess they do not maintain moderation. For as long as the measure of nature is kept, and legitimate moderation is preserved, the mercy of God does not give them liberty to enter into men. But when either the mind falls into impiety, or the body is filled with immoderate meat or drink, then, as if invited by the will and purpose of those who thus neglect themselves, they receive power as against those who have broken the law imposed by God.
Chapter XVII.—The Gospel Gives Power Over Demons.
“You see, then, how important is the acknowledgment of God, and the observance of the divine religion, which not only protects those who believe from the assaults of the demon, but also gives them command over those who rule over others. And therefore it is necessary for you, who are of the Gentiles, to betake yourselves to God, and to keep yourselves from all uncleanness, that the demons may be expelled, and God may dwell in you. And at the same time, by prayers, commit yourselves to God, and call for His aid against the impudence of the demons; for ‘whatever things ye ask, believing, ye shall receive.’736 But even the demons themselves, in proportion as they see faith grow in a man, in that proportion they depart from him, residing only in that part in which something of infidelity still remains; but from those who believe with full faith, they depart without any delay. For when a soul has come to the faith of God, it obtains the virtue of heavenly water, by which it extinguishes the demon like a spark of fire.
Chapter XVIII.—This Power in Proportion to Faith.
“There is therefore a measure of faith, which, if it be perfect, drives the demon perfectly from the soul; but if it has any defect, something on the part of the demon still remains in the portion of infidelity; and it is the greatest difficulty for the soul to understand when or how, whether fully or less fully, the demon has been expelled from it. For if he remains in any quarter, when he gets an opportunity, he suggests thoughts to men’s hearts; and they, not knowing whence they come, believe the suggestions of the demons, as if they were the perceptions of their own souls. Thus they suggest to some to follow pleasure by occasion of bodily necessity; they excuse the passionateness of others by excess of gall; they colour over the madness of others by the vehemence of melancholy; and even extenuate the folly of some as the result of abundance of phlegm. But even if this were so, still none of these could be hurtful to the body, except from the excess of meats and drinks; because, when these are taken in excessive quantities, their abundance, which the natural warmth is not
sufficient to digest, curdles into a sort of poison, and it, flowing through the bowels and all the veins like a common sewer, renders the motions of the body unhealthy and base. Wherefore moderation is to be attained in all things, that neither may place be given to demons, nor the soul, being possessed by them, be delivered along with them to be tormented in eternal fires.
Chapter XIX.—Demons Incite to Idolatry.
“There is also another error of the demons, which they suggest to the senses of men, that they should think that those things which they suffer, they suffer from such as are called gods, in order that thereby, offering sacrifices and gifts, as if to propitiate them, they may strengthen the worship of false religion, and avoid us who are interested in their salvation, that they may be freed from error; but this they do, as I have said, not knowing that these things are suggested to them by demons, for fear they should be saved. It is therefore in the power of every one, since man has been made possessed of free-will, whether he shall hear us to life, or the demons to destruction. Also to some, the demons, appearing visibly under various figures, sometimes throw out threats, sometimes promise relief from sufferings, that they may instil into those whom they deceive the opinion of their being gods, and that it may not be known that they are demons. But they are not concealed from us, who know the mysteries of the creation, and for what reason it is permitted to the demons to do those things in the present world; how it is allowed them to transform themselves into what figures they please, and to suggest evil thoughts, and to convey themselves, by means of meats and of drink consecrated to them, into the minds or bodies of those who partake of it, and to concoct vain dreams to further the worship of some idol.
Chapter XXI.—Heathen Oracles. Clementine recognitions
“Whence it is evident that they since they are demoniac spirits, know some things both more quickly and more perfectly than men; for they are not retarded in their learning by the heaviness of a body. And therefore they, as being spirits, know without delay and without difficulty what physicians attain after a long time and by much labour. It is not wonderful, therefore, if they know somewhat more than men do; but this is to be observed, that what they know they do not employ for the salvation of souls, but for the deception of them, that by means of it they may indoctrinate them in the worship of false religion. But God, that the error of so great deception might not be concealed, and that He Himself might not seem to be a cause of error in permitting them so great licence to deceive men by divinations, and cures, and dreams, has of His mercy furnished men with a remedy, and has made the distinction of falsehood and truth patent to those who desire to know. This, therefore, is that distinction: what is spoken by the true God, whether by prophets or by diverse visions, is always true; but what is foretold by demons is not always true. It is therefore an evident sign that those things are not spoken by the true God, in which at any time there is falsehood; for in truth there is never falsehood. But in the case of those who speak falsehoods, there may occasionally be a slight mixture of truth, to give as it were seasoning to the falsehoods.
Chapter XXX.—Noah’s Sons.
“In the twelfth generation, when God had blessed men, and they had begun to multiply, they received a commandment that they should not taste blood, for on account of this also the deluge had been sent. In the thirteenth generation, when the second of Noah’s three sons had done an injury to his father [Ham], and had been cursed by him, he brought the condition of slavery upon his posterity. His elder brother [Shem] meantime obtained the lot of a dwelling-place in the middle region of the world, in which is the country of Judæa; the younger[Japheth] obtained the eastern quarter, and he the western. In the fourteenth generation one of the cursed progeny first erected an altar to demons, for the purpose of magical arts, and offered there bloody sacrifices. In the fifteenth generation, for the first time, men set up an idol and worshipped it. Until that time the Hebrew language, which had been given by God to men, bore sole sway. In the sixteenth generation the sons of men migrated from the east, and, coming to the lands that had been assigned to their fathers, each one marked the place of his own allotment by his own name. In the seventeenth generation Nimrod I. reigned in Babylonia, and built a city, and thence migrated to the Persians, and taught them to worship fire.”
Chapter LXXI.—Separation from the Unclean.
But Peter, most benignantly regarding me, lest haply that separation might cause me sorrow, says to me: “It is not from pride, O Clement, that I do not eat with those who have not yet been purified; but I fear lest perhaps I should injure myself, and do no good to them.For this I would have you know for certain, that everyone who has at any time worshipped idols, and has adored those whom the pagans call gods, or has eaten of the things sacrificed to them, is not without an unclean spirit; for he has become a guest of demons, and has been partaker with that demon of which he has formed the image in his mind, either through fear or love. And by these means he is not free from an unclean spirit, and therefore needs the purification of baptism, that the unclean spirit may go out of him, which has made its abode in the inmost affections of his soul, and what is worse, gives no indication that it lurks within, for fear it should be exposed and expelled.” Clemetine Recognitions