A resume of the Mandates on the Book of Shepherd of Hermas (part 4)
A Warning against false prophets:
"Hear, quoth he, concerning both the prophets (true and false); and as I will now tell thee,
so shalt thou prove the prophet and the false prophet.
From his life prove thou the man that hath the divine Spirit.
8. First he that hath the divine Spirit which is from above
is meek and peaceable and lowly, and refraineth himself from every wickedness
and vain desire of this world, and he maketh himself more needy than all men,
and answereth nothing to any when enquired of,
and speaketh not solitarily, neither when a man would speak doth the Holy Spirit
speak; but when God willeth that he should speak, then he speaketh.
9. Whensoever therefore the man who hath the divine Spirit cometh into a synagogue
of just men who have faith in the divine Spirit, and the congregation of those men
make their prayer unto God, then the Angel of the prophetic spirit which besetteth
him filleth the man, and the man being filled with the Holy Spirit speaketh
to the multitude as the Lord willeth."
(Shepherd of Hermas 11th Mand. 1.7-9)
Hilgenfeld supposes that Mand. xi originally stood after Sim. iv. as one
of the similitudes; and he remarks that pseudo-Athanasius quotes Mand. x., xii. in
reverse order as the Eleventh and Tenth commandments,
and does not quote Mand. xi.
(Shepherd of Hermas, to english by Taylor, 1903, 11th Mand. page 149)
"But men who are of two minds and often repent use divination like the heathen,
and bring upon themselves the greater sin by their idolatry;
for he that enquireth of a false prophet about any matter is an idolater
and void of the truth and foolish.
For any Spirit given of God is not enquired of,
but having the power of the God-head it speaketh all things of itself,
because it is from above, from the power of the divine Spirit
6. But the Spirit that is enquired of and speaketh according to the desires
of men is earthly and light and hath no power,
and it speaketh not all except it be enquired of." (Shepherd of Hermas 11th Mand. 1.4-6)