Saturday, May 2, 2015

A resume of the Similitudes of the Shepherd of Hermas Book (part 4)

A resume of the Similitudes of the Shepherd of Hermas Book (part 4)

The angel of luxury and deceit

"1. And the Shepherd said to me, Seest thou this pastor? 
I see him, sir, quoth I.  This, quoth he, is the angel of luxury and deceit       
He weareth out the souls of God's servants and subverteth them from the truth,
cheating them with evil lusts whereby they perish.
2. For they forget the commandments of the living God,
and walk in vain deceits and delights, and are destroyed by this angel,
some unto death and some unto decay." (Shepherd of Hermas 6th Sim. 2.1,2)

"In them there is no repentance unto life, for they added to their sins
and blasphemed against the name of God.
To such men belongeth death." (Shepherd of Hermas 6th Sim. 2.3)

The angel of retribution

"1. Seeing them then so scourged and in misery I was grieved over them,
because they were thus tormented and had no respite at all.
2. And I said to the Shepherd who was speaking with me, Sir,
who is this shepherd that is so unmerciful and cruel and quite without pity
upon these sheep? This, quoth he, is the angel of retribution;
and he is one of the righteous angels, and is set over punishment.
3. He rcceiveth therefore such as have strayed away from God and walked
in the lusts and deceits of this world, and punisheth them with dreadful
and divers punishments according to their deserving." (Shepherd of Hermas 6th Sim. 3.2,3)

 "... the divers punishments and torments are torments during lifetime.
For some are punished with losses, some with wants, some with sundry infirmities,
some with all unsettlement; and some by being insulted by the unworthy,
and by suffering many other mishaps." (Shepherd of Hermas 6th Sim. 3.4)

The suffering, repentance, righteousness, happiness.

"6. When therefore they have been afflicted with all manner of affliction,
they are delivered to me for good instruction and made strong
in the faith of the Lord, and the rest of the days of their life
they serve the Lord with a pure heart;
and if they repent, the evil things that they have done come into their mind,
and then they glorify God, saying that He is a just judge and that they
have suffered justly, each according to his doings.
And thenceforth they serve the Lord with a pure heart and are prospered
in all their doings, receiving from the Lord all things that they ask;
and then they glorify the Lord for that they were delivered to me,
and they never again suffer any ill." (Shepherd of Hermas 6th Sim. 3.6)

The time of torment. One year per day.

"As many days therefore as one liveth in pleasure,
so many years he is tormented." (Shepherd of Hermas 6th Sim. 4.4)

OBS: In accordance with Num. xiv. 34, Ezek. iv. 6 each day for a year, and
John xi. 9 Are there not twelve hours in the day?
although "day" there means daytime, he makes " the day of torment " equal
twelve months. Compare in Aboth iv. (Jewish Fathers, p. 74),
" Better is one hour of repentance and good works in this world than all the life
of the world to come  better is one hour of refreshment of spirit in the world
to come than all the life of this world." (Shepherd of Hermas 6th Sim. Taylor vol II, page 42)

The pleasures that hurt men.

"5. What manner of pleasures, sir, quoth I, are hurtful?
Every act, quoth he, which he doeth gladly is a pleasure to a man,
The passionate man in satisfying his own temper delighteth himself;
and the adulterer and the drunkard and the slanderer and the liar
and the covetous and the defrauder and they who
(do the like to these things indulge their proper disease, each taking pleasure
in what he doeth.
6. All these pleasures are hurtful to the servants of God,
and because of these deceits do they suffer who are punished and tormented. "
(Shepherd of Hermas 6th Sim. 5.5,6)