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The Apocryphal Old Testament Collection of the most important non-canonical Old Testament books designed for general use.

Chapter VI

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Text Commentary

1And I ordered Beezebul to stand before me again, and I sat him beside me, and I thought it fit to ask him, Why are you the only ruler of the demons? 2He said to me, Because I am the only one of the heavenly angels left remaining. For I was a leading heavenly angel called Beezebul. 3And with me was a second impious one whom God cut off, and now confined here he rules my folk that are imprisoned in Tartarus: he gets his food in the Red Sea, and in his own time will come to triumph. 4And I said to him, What are your functions? And he said to me, I too destroy through tyrants, and cause the demons to be worshipped among men, and excite holy priests, who have been chosen by God, to lust; and I bring about jealousies in cities and murders, and I bring on wars. 5And I said to him, Bring me the one you mentioned, who feeds in the Red Sea. But he said, I will not bring up anyone to you myself; but one called Ephippas shall come, who will bind him and bring him up from the depth. 6And I said to him, Tell me how he comes to be in the depth of the Red Sea and what his name is. He said, Do not ask me: you cannot learn it from me; for he himself will come to you because I too am with you. 7I said to him, Tell me, what star are you associated with? He said, What is called the Evening Star among men. 8I said, Tell me what angel you are inhibited by. He said, By the all-powerful God: he is called among the Hebrews Patike (he that came down from on high); but he is the Emmanuel of the Greeks. And I am afraid of him and tremble before him. 1 Lit. ‘I fear him with trembling’. If anyone adjures me by Eloi, 2 Cp. Mark xv. 34 . his great name of power, I disappear. 9When I, Solomon, heard this, I commanded him to saw Theban marbles. When he began to saw, all the demons shouted with a loud voice because of their king Beezebul. 10I, Solomon, questioned him, saying, If you want to obtain your release, tell me about heavenly things. And Beezebul said, Listen, O king. If you burn gum and incense and sea-bulbs, nard and saffron, and light seven lamps in an earthquake, you will make your house secure. But if (that is, if you are pure) you light them in the early morning sunlight, you will see how the heavenly serpents wind along and draw the chariot of the sun. 11When I, Solomon, heard this, I rebuked him and said, Be quiet, and saw the marbles I told you to.

Chaps. VII to XVIII all follow the same pattern. Demons are summoned, questioned as to their names and functions and the angel by whom each is inhibited, and finally assigned to work on the temple. The contents are summarised.

Notes:

1 Lit. ‘I fear him with trembling’.

2 Cp. Mark xv. 34 .

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