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Recognitions of Clement

 

Defends Peter From Eating Issue As Relating to Meat Sacrified to Idols

 

Clement, bishop of Rome, after the first day's debate by Peter with Simon Magus, is told by Peter why he will not eat with the people who were his supporters waiting after the debate to see him. Interestingly, it had to do with the issue of eating meat sacrificed to idols:

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.671671 [Comp. book i. 19, vii. 29; Homilies I. 22, XIII. 4.—R.] For this I would have you know for certain, that every one 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.672672 . 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.” (Recognitions LXXII.)  

 

Vain Boastings Impair Seeing Founder Aright

 

The Clementine Recognititions at 1:15 have this interesting quote of Apostle Peter making another allusion to Paul in a letter to Clement:

Bad instruction...vain boasting, and other such evils have filled the whole house of this world, like some enormous smoke...preventing those who dwell in it from seeing its Founder aright....What is fitting for those who are within, excepting with a cry brought forth from their inmost hearts to invoke His aid, who alone is not shut up in the smoke filled house, that He would ... open the door...so that the smoke may be dissipated...and the light of the sun...may be admitted.  

 

This says we are living in a Bubble of Smoke. We need the light to penetrate to see outside the bubble. So true! What follows this quote is Peter saying that Paul was the source of these errors, and Paul's visions deluded him. (This is discussed in Lawrence Goudge, How The Church Silenced Jesus's True Heirs (2012), Kindle, loc. 1%.)

 


Paul's Disruption of James' Preaching

 

The Recognititions of Clement are recognized by scholars as written by the early Ebionites. The passage below tells of Paul interrupting a speech where James is persuading leaders among the Jews to accept Jesus. James is addressing them from the Temple portico. Paul interrupts and throws James down, injuring him but not killing James. Now this passage went through the hands of later editors (Rufinus who boasts altering translations to add doctrines only affirmed later - see link) who added Trinity messages (e.g., there is a reference to a baptism in the "three-fold blessedness," etc.) --- doctrines that arose in the 300s, but it is a likely source of historical information of the pre-Damascus Paul. We read in Recognitions:

"... the high priest of the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem had often sent priests to ask us that we might discourse with one another concerning Jesus: when it seemed a fit opportunity, and it pleased all of our church, we accepted the invitation and went up to the temple. It was crowded with people who had come to listen, many Jews and many of our own brethren. First the high priest told people that they should listen patiently and quietly.... Then, he began exalting with many praises the rite of animal sacrifice for the remission of sins and found fault with the baptism given by our Jesus to replace animal sacrifice....
"To him our James began to show, by abundant proof that Jesus is the Christ, and that in Him are fulfilled all the prophecies which related to His humble advent. For, James showed that two advents of Him are foretold: one in humiliation, which He has now accomplished; the other in glory, which is yet to be accomplished....
"And when James had plainly taught the people concerning these things, he added this also, that unless a man be baptized in water, in the name of the threefold blessedness, as the True Prophet taught, he can neither receive remission of sins nor enter the kingdom of heaven: and he declared that this is the prescription of the unbegotten God.... And when James had spoken some more things about baptism, through seven successive days he persuaded all the people and even the high priest that they should hasten straightaway to receive baptism....
"And when matters were at that point that they would all come and be baptized, [Paul] [changed by historical revision to "some one of our enemies"] and his men entered the temple: and [Paul] cried out: 'Oh men of Israel, why are you so easily influenced by these miserable men?' He began to excite the people and raise a tumult... and drive all into confusion with shouting, and to undo what had been done by James. [Paul] rebuked the priests for having listened to James, and, like a madman, began to excite the priests and people to murder James and the brethren, saying 'Do not hesitate; grab them and pull them to pieces.' [Paul] then, seizing a strong brand from the altar, set the example of smiting. Then others also, seeing him, joined in the beating. Much blood was shed. Although James and the brethren were more numerous and more powerful they rather suffered themselves to be killed by an inferior force, than to kill others. [Paul] [changed into "that enemy"] attacked James and threw him headlong from the top of the steps; and supposing him to be dead left him."

See "Recognitions of Clement," Book 1, Chapters LXIX and LXX, in Alexander Roberts et al. Ante-Nicene Fathers: Translations of the Writings of the Fathers Down to AD 325 (1886) Vol. 8 at 95-96. (Catholic editing is obvious, and even Roberts alludes to these softened references as forgeries, and titles the heading as Tumult Raised by Saul even though Saul-Paul is never mentioned by name.]

 

It should be noted that in this account of Paul -- although his name was hidden by Rufinus' edits in translation from the 300s -- that James, the Bishop of Jerusalem, does not die. He is severly injured. This is a pre-Damascus Road Paul.

Later, a terrible historian named Dorotheus conflated / confused this James with the James killed in Acts 12. However, the James in this Clementine account is Bishop James (brother of Jesus) who is very much still alive in Acts 15 and Acts 21. Yet, Dorotheus claimed Paul murdered James, son of Alpheus (killed in Acts 12) whom he claims was also the brother of Jesus (a different James who is very much alive in Acts 15 & 21). Talk about a bad historian. This is discussed in detail in Did Paul Murder James, the Brother of Jesus?



Peter's Declaration in Clementine Homolies At Odds With Paul's Views on Idol Meat

 

The Clementine Homolies from the 200 AD edition (translated into Latin manuscripts in the 300s by Rufinus) are also regarded by scholars as the preserved views of the early Ebionites -- which means "The Poor" in Hebrew. (Ebion = Poor in Hebrew.) I explain in Jesus Words Only they actually were the early church under James and the 12 Apostles depicted in Acts 15 and 21. Paul collected money for the POOR at Jerusalem, meaning the church which called itself the Poor. Jerome concurs that is the party to whom Paul was referring to as the Poor. See Jerome quote.

Here is an excerpt pertaining to whether eating idol meat is ok, which indepently we know Paul's epistles we are told three times it is permissible to eat the same:

"But you are still ignorant of this law, that everyone who worships demons or their idols, 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 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 wherein the demons have no power over any one who does not worship them by being their table-companions in the eating of flesh.... But you, being ignorant of the foreordained law, are under the power of the chief of demons through evil deeds, wherefore you are polluted in body and soul, and in the present life you are tyrannized over by sufferings and demons.... If therefore, ye wish to be the vesture of the Divine Spirit,.... neither believe in idols, nor partake with them of the impure table...."  

See "Clementine Homolies," Homily VIII, Chapter XX, in Alexander Roberts et al. Ante-Nicene Fathers: Translations of the Writings of the Fathers Down to AD 325 (1886) Vol. 8 at 274

 

Paul's Angel of Satan Remark Explained in Clementines

 

Paul in 2 Cor. 12:7 says the "Lord" refused his prayer three times to be released from torment by an "Angel of Satan." The Clementines obviously connect that affliction of Paul aka Simon Magus to Paul elsewhere defending Christians can eat meat sacrificed to idols. Peter addresses him:

 

"But you are still ignorant of this law, that everyone who worships demons or their idols, 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 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 wherein the demons have no power over any one who does not worship them by being their table-companions in the eating of flesh.... But you, being ignorant of the foreordained law, are under the power of the chief of demons through evil deeds, wherefore you are polluted in body and soul, and in the present life you are tyrannized over by sufferings and demons.... If therefore, ye wish to be the vesture of the Divine Spirit,.... neither believe in idols, nor partake with them of the impure table...."  (Recognitions of Clement, chapter XXIII at this link.) 

Peter Addresses Paul's "Imparted" Nothing Remark.

 

The Clementines have Peter address two passages in Paul's epistles by indirect means. First, in the quote that follows Peter is alluding to Paul's remark that the apostles - in particular the "so-called pillars" -- Peter, John and James -- "imparted nothing to me." This is in contrast to Paul's boasts of his revelations in visions from Jesus. Second, in the quote that follows, Peter alludes to Paul saying that Peter erred by withdrawing eating with Gentiles. While Paul in his epistle did not give Peter's ground was because to dine with them would result in eating meat sacrificed to idols, now here  Peter speaks to Paul aka Simon Magus about the audacity to correct himself for obeying Christ whom unquestionably was Peter's true teacher. Here is the quote covering both points: 

 

But if you say that I am condemned, you bring an accusation against God, who revealed the Christ to me, and you inveigh against Him who pronounced me blessed on account of the revelation. But if, indeed, you really wish to work in the cause of truth, learn first of all from us what we have learned from Him, and, becoming a disciple of the truth, become a fellow-worker with us. (Clementine Homilies 17,19.) 22 

 

Peter Addresses Quality of Paul's Revelations When He Clearly Contradicts Jesus 

 

The Clementines also include a clear reference to the obvious fact Paul contradicts Jesus in Matthew 5:17-19 and Matthew 19 on the importance of the Law, and its role in Salvation. Peter in this next quote from the Clementines says in Homoly 17: 

 

"If then, our Jesus appeared to you in a vision, made Himself known to you, made himself known to you, and spoke to you, it was as one enraged with an adversary .... And how did he [Messiah] appear to you when you entertain opinions contrary to his teachings? ... And how are we to believe your word when you tell us He appeared to you? But if you were seen and taught by him, and became his apostle for a single hour, proclaim his utterances, interpret his sayings, and love his apostles." ("Clementine Homolies," Ante-Nicene Fathers (ed. Rev. Alexander Roberts) Ch. XIX at 323 / 324.)

 

Created May 29, 2011

 

Study Notes

    Series by David Notsari

 

Peter's Letter to James (in Recognitions)-You Tube

 

Peter's Letter to James - Part 1 (in Recognitions)-YT

Peter's Letter to James - Part 2 (in Recognitions) - YT

Doctrines of the Nazarenes Hidden by Church -YT

Who Were the Original Followers of Yeshua - YT 

49 YTs Readings of Clementines - starting link 

Clementine Recognitions - Part 10 - 33:35 -

-- Being seduced into error by Satan contradicting God is no excuse, for Eve suffered punishment for being deceived in that manner. Likewise, Deut 13:1-5 - Peter contends --  proves being deceived by signs and wonders is no excuse on judgment day from straying from God's Law.

 

Mr. Notsari has a webpage on Hebrew Christianity resources, such as free download copies of Clementine literature. You can find such downloads at this Link. I don't necessarily endorse Mr. Notsari's site itself. I have not had time to review it. But he provides links to books in print which are clearly a valuable service.

 

Series by Hosha

Hosha -How Early Christians left Roots -YT (often not aware of important facts)

 

Detering’s Explanation

Detering says Clementines were altered to change Paul’s name by Catholic authorities to Simon Magus to protect Paul. See Biography of Paul.