Marcion's Gospel

Discussion about the New Testament, apocrypha, gnostics, church fathers, Christian origins, historical Jesus or otherwise, etc.
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Ben C. Smith
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Re: Marcion's Gospel

Post by Ben C. Smith » Sat Dec 28, 2019 6:28 am

MrMacSon wrote:
Sat Dec 28, 2019 3:02 am
Ben C. Smith wrote:
Fri Dec 27, 2019 8:32 am
What are the rules for this little game, then? ... What are the analogies you are working from?

... the rule you seem to be setting up may be flawed, and the exposure of the flaws in such rules knows no chronological boundary unless the rule itself has established one.
I'm not setting up a rule.* I started commenting on Tertullians references to or use of Paul. I've started looking at Irenaeus on Paul (I'm aware Justin Martyr either hardly referred to Paul or didn't know him at all).

* the only 'rules' or 'inquiry-considerations' I'm following (but not setting up) are

(a) that, when dealing with Church Fathers, one ought to question which direction passages and pericopes flowed - whether, (i) as traditionally thought, from versions of what eventually became the NT books to the Fathers' documents; or (ii) from the Fathers to the eventual NT books (and therefore that passages in the Fathers' works identical to or similar to those in the eventual NT books might be a coincidence, or that the epistle or gospel writers used the Fathers' works to finalise their books); ....
This is possible, and should always be considered.
...and

(b) whether the Church Fathers might have been dealing with Marcion's version of a document or an orthodox one (something I'm hardly knowledgeable enough to discern)
You asked:
Why would Tertullian find it necessary to elevate Paul at this stage of Christianity if Christianity was [supposedly] well established?
The very question implies a rule: namely, that Tertullian finding it necessary to elevate Paul implies one particular stage of Christianity and not another; presumably, Tertullian not finding it necessary to elevate Paul would have implied a different stage of Christianity (if not, then what you noted about Tertullian was, by definition, irrelevant to the issue of which stage of Christianity he represents).

You may object to calling this a "rule" for some reason, but call it whatever you like and the dynamics are still the same: Tertullian's elevation (or lack thereof) of Paul carries, according to your statement, certain implications. And my question is why you think that it carries those implications. Why not exactly the opposite? Or why assume that those implications are related in the first place? Whence are you drawing this "rule," this guideline, this method of figuring out which stage of Christianity a certain church father represents?
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MrMacSon
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Re: Marcion's Gospel

Post by MrMacSon » Sat Dec 28, 2019 8:31 pm

Ben C. Smith wrote:
Sat Dec 28, 2019 6:28 am

You asked:
Why would Tertullian find it necessary to elevate Paul at this stage of Christianity if Christianity was [supposedly] well established?
The very question implies a rule: namely, that Tertullian finding it necessary to elevate Paul implies one particular stage of Christianity and not another ...
  • Nope.

Ben C. Smith wrote:
Sat Dec 28, 2019 6:28 am
... presumably, Tertullian not finding it necessary to elevate Paul would have implied a different stage of Christianity
  • Nope.

Ben C. Smith wrote:
Sat Dec 28, 2019 6:28 am
(if not, then what you noted about Tertullian was, by definition, irrelevant to the issue of which stage of Christianity he represents).
  • Nope.

Ben C. Smith wrote:
Sat Dec 28, 2019 6:28 am
Tertullian's elevation (or lack thereof) of Paul carries, according to your statement, certain implications.
  • Yep.

And my question is why you think that it carries those implications[?]
  • I am wondering - hypothesizing - if there is an implication, via Tertullian's commentaries, whether the Pauline epistles could have been expanded the way Jason Beduhn, Markus Vinzent, and Matthias Klinghardt have proposed (& argued) Marcion's gospel was expanded to become Luke's and other canonical gospels.

Ben C. Smith wrote:
Sat Dec 28, 2019 6:28 am
Whence are you drawing ... this method of figuring out which stage of Christianity a certain church father represents?
  • I'm not yet sure if each church father represents a stage of Christianity. But what Tertullians implies what he knew about the Pauline epistles, compared to what Irenaeus implies he knew about Paul [+/- the epistles attributed to him], might be a good exercise (in parallel with considering aspects of the Marcion gospel and its provenance).

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Re: Marcion's Gospel

Post by Ben C. Smith » Sat Dec 28, 2019 9:17 pm

MrMacSon wrote:
Sat Dec 28, 2019 8:31 pm
Ben C. Smith wrote:
Sat Dec 28, 2019 6:28 am

You asked:
Why would Tertullian find it necessary to elevate Paul at this stage of Christianity if Christianity was [supposedly] well established?
The very question implies a rule: namely, that Tertullian finding it necessary to elevate Paul implies one particular stage of Christianity and not another ...
  • Nope.

Ben C. Smith wrote:
Sat Dec 28, 2019 6:28 am
... presumably, Tertullian not finding it necessary to elevate Paul would have implied a different stage of Christianity
  • Nope.

Ben C. Smith wrote:
Sat Dec 28, 2019 6:28 am
(if not, then what you noted about Tertullian was, by definition, irrelevant to the issue of which stage of Christianity he represents).
  • Nope.
??
Ben C. Smith wrote:
Sat Dec 28, 2019 6:28 am
Tertullian's elevation (or lack thereof) of Paul carries, according to your statement, certain implications.
  • Yep.

And my question is why you think that it carries those implications[?]
  • I am wondering - hypothesizing - if there is an implication, via Tertullian's commentaries, whether the Pauline epistles could have been expanded the way Jason Beduhn, Markus Vinzent, and Matthias Klinghardt have proposed (& argued) Marcion's gospel was expanded to become Luke's and other canonical gospels.
Okay, so how does Tertullian elevating Paul (or not) play into this hypothesizing of yours?
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Re: Marcion's Gospel

Post by andrewcriddle » Mon Dec 30, 2019 5:42 am

MrMacSon wrote:
Wed Dec 25, 2019 2:58 pm
andrewcriddle wrote:
Mon Dec 23, 2019 1:38 am
perseusomega9 wrote:
Sat Dec 21, 2019 6:10 am
But why even mention that at all? Mentioning Paul sure, given the tradition of Markion and Paul, but why even bring up gMark unless their was a connection in the tradition?
I made a suggestion of a possible explanation here

Basically Hippolytus is arguing:
i/ The Gospel tradition which Hippolytus, (but apparently not Marcion), attributes to Luke derives from Mark and Paul.
ii/ Marcion’s doctrine cannot be derived from Mark and Paul.
iii/ Therefore, Marcion’s doctrine cannot be regarded as a legitimate version of the Lukan Gospel tradition.

Andrew Criddle
I agree with premises (i) and (ii), but I cannot agree that (ii) is a conclusion or even logically follows from them.
IF all legitimate Lukan traditions derive from Mark and Paul AND Marcion's doctrine does not derive from Mark and Paul THEN Marcion's doctrine is not a legitimate Lukan tradition.

(IF all As are B AND C is not B THEN C is not an A.)

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Re: Marcion's Gospel

Post by Secret Alias » Mon Dec 30, 2019 8:35 am

That's too complicated Andrew. Can you simplify it a little more?
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MrMacSon
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Re: Marcion's Gospel

Post by MrMacSon » Mon Dec 30, 2019 9:50 pm

andrewcriddle wrote:
Mon Dec 30, 2019 5:42 am
MrMacSon wrote:
Wed Dec 25, 2019 2:58 pm
andrewcriddle wrote:
Mon Dec 23, 2019 1:38 am
perseusomega9 wrote:
Sat Dec 21, 2019 6:10 am
But why even mention that at all? Mentioning Paul sure, given the tradition of Markion and Paul, but why even bring up gMark unless their was a connection in the tradition?
I made a suggestion of a possible explanation here

Basically Hippolytus is arguing:
i/ The Gospel tradition which Hippolytus, (but apparently not Marcion), attributes to Luke derives from Mark and Paul.
ii/ Marcion’s doctrine cannot be derived from Mark and Paul.
iii/ Therefore, Marcion’s doctrine cannot be regarded as a legitimate version of the Lukan Gospel tradition.

Andrew Criddle
I agree with premises (i) and (ii), but I cannot agree that (ii) is a conclusion or even logically follows from them.
IF all legitimate Lukan traditions derive from Mark and Paul, AND Marcion's doctrine does not derive from Mark and Pau, THEN Marcion's doctrine is not a legitimate Lukan tradition.

Andrew Criddle

"IF" ...

What do you mean by "legitimate Lukan tradition/s" ?? [Traditional perceptions and assertions about the supposed 'Lukan priority tradition' ?? ]

What are your understanding and perceptions of the propositions and arguments of Joseph B Tyson, Jason Beduhn, Markus Vinzent, and Matthias Klinghardt: that the-gospel-attributed-to-Marcion has priority?

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Re: Marcion's Gospel

Post by MrMacSon » Mon Dec 30, 2019 9:55 pm

The question/hypothesis I have proposed has since been asked on the subreddit, r/AdademicBiblical, but not by me -

If we assume Marcion priority over Luke, what reason do we have to believe Marcion edited the Pauline Epistles?, -

If we assume that gLord has priority over gLuke (Vinzent, Klinghardt, Tyson, etc.), and thus the early church figures that accused Marcion of editing gLuke were either wrong or lying, what reason do we have to suspect that these figures are more honest/correct when it comes to the Pauline Epistles?

Marcion's versions of the epistles were lacking certain verses and he was accused by these figures of purposefully removing these verses, but what reason do we have to believe these statements? Could these verses have not just as easily have been later interpolations and the church figures are making false accusations about Marcion in the same vein as their accusations about him editing gLuke?

Again, if we assume the theory of Marcion priority, what reasons are there to think it was, in fact, Marcion that edited the Pauline Epistles?
.
The poster, u/ShadowDestroyertime, has elaborated, in response to a query, -
Sorry if I wasn't clear in the OP, but one of the main reasons to suspect that he was the one that edited Paul's letters are the accusations made by the same church figures that accused him of editing gLuke.

Marcion is usually credited with being the first to gather Paul's letters (though, there are some arguments that it may have happened earlier) and his versions of Paul's epistles are lacking certain verses, which many church figures accused Marcion of having taken out (meaning that they say these missing verses are originally part of the epistles).

If these figures are wrong/lying about Marcion editing gLuke to create gLord, then should we not also doubt them in regards to Marcion editing the Pauline Epistles? Maybe it is the case that these missing verses are, in fact, the interpolations rather than Marcion having removed them.

https://www.reddit.com/r/AcademicBiblic ... dium=web2x

u/PastorNathan has also clarified the point, -
...There is one claim, made by both Epiphanius and Tertullian: "The differences between the books used by Marcion and the books we use are due to alterations made by Marcion." Given that Klinghardt, Vinzent, et al have thoroughly disputed the specific case of whether Marcion edited the Gospel, it absolutely makes sense to turn a skeptical eye to the supposed Marcionite edits to the epistles.

https://www.reddit.com/r/AcademicBiblic ... dium=web2x
and
... Unlike the Evangelion, where Tertullian and Epiphanius usually agree in their contrasts between the Marcionite and Lukan texts (with a few significant exceptions), their descriptions of the Apostolicon [the proposed Marcionite collection of ten of the Pauline epistles] are significantly different. For instance, regarding Philemon, Epiphanus says "I likewise make no selections from it, since in Marcion it is distorted," whereas Tertullian says, "This epistle alone has so profited by its brevity as to escape Marcion’s falsifying hands."

This is a huge roadblock when it comes to reconstructing the text [of the Apostilicon] and doing the sort of analysis that Kinghardt, Vinzent, et al, relied on to show that Luke redacted gMarcion ...

https://www.reddit.com/r/AcademicBiblic ... dium=web2x
I am not a participant in the comments in the ensuing, below-the-line threads.

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Re: Marcion's Gospel

Post by John2 » Wed Jan 01, 2020 2:24 pm

Regarding the idea of Marcion's version of Luke having priority over the NT Luke, while I can accept that there could have been more than one version of Luke, I suspect that they were originally all more or less from the same time period and like the NT Luke, and I still have the impression that Marcion altered the version he had access to more or less like Church writers say. In my view the only major odd thing to explain is Hippolytus, but even in that case the account of Marcion's gospel that he cites is from Luke.

So here's my big picture view again. I suspect Luke and Acts were written by Paul's (and later Josephus') patron Epaphroditus and that he is the person of the same name who was executed by Domitian c. 95 CE. And given that he was executed, he may not have had time to finalize Luke and Acts and thus perhaps more than one draft of them had circulated, and one of them became the NT version and another became Marcion's version.

And I think the appeal of Luke for Marcion (which may not have been called Luke yet in his time, hence his gospel having no name) could have been that it was known or thought to have been written by a follower of Paul (which in time was thought to have been Luke). And Marcion's rejection of Acts makes sense because it appears to have the agenda and smoothing things over between Paul and Jewish Christians and presents Paul as observing the Torah.
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Re: Marcion's Gospel

Post by Charles Wilson » Wed Jan 01, 2020 3:15 pm

John2 --

I commend you for a thoughtful Post. That is, I agree with a lot of what you say!
John2 wrote:
Wed Jan 01, 2020 2:24 pm
So here's my big picture view again. I suspect Luke and Acts were written by Paul's (and later Josephus') patron Epaphroditus and that he is the person of the same name who was executed by Domitian c. 95 CE.
I, of course, have held the view that "Paul" is a character based on Mucianus, Procurator of Syria. I hold no opinion on Epaphroditus though I'll be glad to explore more here. Nonetheless, you get to Domitian quickly enough and that is always good to see:

Suetonius, 12 Caesars, "Domitian":

"They even had ladders brought and his shields and images torn down before their eyes and dashed upon the ground; finally they passed a decree that his inscriptions should everywhere be erased, and all record of him obliterated."

These acts have a name that has come down to us as "Damantio Memoriae" and it ties up the early Flavians with a nice little bow. Vespasian the father, Titus the son and the Damnatio'd Domitian dba "The Holy Spirit". The HS has no existence Predicates attached to him, reflecting the Decree that, indeed, "all record of him [was] obliterated". Domitian held the pen last, so to speak, for the Founding documents for the NT, but this changes in a hurry after his assassination by Domitilla's Steward, Stephanus. Your date of 95 is close to the earliest date for any Proto-Gospel being built on the deification of Titus. The appearance of "Holy Spirit" as a name probably is early (98/99 - 105-ish) as the Documents supporting the New Religion must come soon after Domitian's death.
And given that he was executed, he may not have had time to finalize Luke and Acts and thus perhaps more than one draft of them had circulated, and one of them became the NT version and another became Marcion's version.
The third way out: Marcion AND the early Church had a version and the the Race for Orthodox Supremacy rested on the Certification that "Our corrupted Version is better than Marcion's corrupted Version."
And I think the appeal of Luke for Marcion (which may not have been called Luke yet in his time, hence his gospel having no name) could have been that it was known or thought to have been written by a follower of Paul (which in time was thought to have been Luke). And Marcion's rejection of Acts makes sense because it appears to have the agenda and smoothing things over between Paul and Jewish Christians and presents Paul as observing the Torah.
Enter an Analysis of Mucianus here - and the 12th Legion - which are the subjects of Acts. That, however, is for another day.

Nice Post, John2.

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Re: Marcion's Gospel

Post by Ben C. Smith » Wed Jan 01, 2020 4:11 pm

John2 wrote:
Wed Jan 01, 2020 2:24 pm
Regarding the idea of Marcion's version of Luke having priority over the NT Luke, while I can accept that there could have been more than one version of Luke, I suspect that they were originally all more or less from the same time period and like the NT Luke, and I still have the impression that Marcion altered the version he had access to more or less like Church writers say.
Marcion's gospel (or the gospel tagged as Marcionite by the usual patristic suspects) apparently lacked, based on external evidence, chapters 1-2. Luke itself apparently lacked, based on internal evidence, chapters 1-2, as well. That Luke was written with these two chapters originally and then Marcion sheared them off all of his own accord, as the church fathers would have it, seems very unlikely to me. Rather, either the two chapters had not yet been added in Marcion's time or he excised them from his own version precisely in order to line up with what he knew or thought to be earlier editions.

The other (admittedly smaller) indications of Marcionite priority are also awaiting explanation, to my eye.

Moreover, the Lucan prologue seems to me to be explicitly combining or reconciling different textual traditions; that one of those traditions should have been the one that Marcion inherited and (re)published ought not to come as a surprise.

All of this to say: I think that Marcion altering what he found more or less like the church fathers say is one of the least probable options on the table. That he made alterations to anything he may have found is more than fair; everybody else seems to have made alterations of their own, so why not Marcion, too? But that he made the alterations attributed to him by the church fathers is quite another matter; no way was Marcion solely and originally responsible for the removal of Luke 1-2, for example.
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