Friday, February 5, 2016
Marcion and the First New Testament
Marcion - The Father of Christianity, article in Antiquity Unveiled 1912
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The epistles attributed to St. Paul by Christians, were nothing more nor less than certain epistles of Apollonius of Tyana, found some thirty-two years after his death at Antioch, by Marcion, who copied them, he making such alterations as would conceal their real authorship and object, and that they were taken by him to Rome, about A. D. 130, where he hoped to become the head of the Christian religion by establishing a new canonical scripture. This spirit testifies positively that he was the first to introduce those writings to the public, and this fact seems to be amply sustained by indisputable historical evidence. According to Dr. Lardner, Marcion rejected three gospels of the Christians, the Acts of the Apostles, and other books now claimed to be canonical. This is simply absurd. Those books were then not in existence. The probability is, that Apollonius had never made public these writings, and as they were written in the Samaritan tongue, as Apollonius, Ulphilas, Hegesippus, and other spirits have stated, they were not available to the Greek and Latin scholars of that time. Nothing was more natural than that an educated and influential Cappadocian, whose native language was the Samaritan tongue, should have found those writings of Apollonius in Antioch after the death of that great medium, oracle and prophet, and copied or translated them, from the Samaritan, into the Greek and Latin tongues, with both of which languages he was familiar as with his own.
But we have these matters set perfectly at rest by the priceless researches of our countryman, Mr. Charles B. Waite, in his "History of the Christian religion to A. D. 200." This fearless and indefatigable searcher for truth has shown, beyond all question, that the Gospel of Marcion, is the original from which the four canonical Christian gospels have been fabricated by Christian plagiarists. We will therefore refer our readers to his invaluable labors in order to prove the importance and truthfulness of that startling communication from Marcion, entitled by Christian writers, St. Mark.
I ask the reader, whether in the light of the spirit communication from the spirit of Marcion, there can any longer be a question that there was a Gospel of Paul, and that the writer of it was none other than Apollonius of Tyana? (This Gospel of Paul, was a Samaritan version of the Sanscrit gospel or gospels of Deva Bodhisatoua, obtained at Singapoor by Apollonius, and modified by him in accordance with his philosophic views.") It was this Buddhistic gospel of Apollonius that was still further modified by Marcion in the gospel which he took to and preached at Rome. It was still further modified by some writer thirty years afterward, and labeled the Gospel according to St. Luke. The author of the Gospel of Marcion, the Gospel of Luke, and the Pauline epistles being one and the same person and that person none other than Apollonius of Tyana, the only Apollos or Paulus or Paul, that ever had an existence...In speaking of the loss or destruction of evidence, Mr. Waite speaks of the writings of Marcion in the following just and forcible manner, which we cannot refrain from quoting in this connection.
"Pure Christianity has suffered no greater loss, than that of the writings of Marcion, the great theological thinker of the second century—the compiler of the first complete gospel — the collector of the epistles of Paul — the editor and publisher of the first New Testament. While the elaborate work against him, written by Tertullian, who called him a 'hound,' has been preserved, and the work of Epiphanius, who bestowed upon him the euphonius appellation of 'beast,' the writings of Marcion have perished, except such as are found in the references and citations of his adversaries. His works have shared the common fate of those of the heretics of the second century, none of which, in their original form, have been permitted to come down to us.
"Marcion was an educated man, and a profound thinker, and no relic of Christian antiquity, next to the Epistles of Paul, would to-day be more valuable, than his writings. Being himself a collector of gospel and New Testament manuscripts, his writings upon those subjects would forever set at rest the question, as to what gospels were then in circulation."
Can there be doubt any longer as to what the Gospel of Marcion was, in view of all the facts of the case? Through an unlettered man, who never heard of Marcion, a communication is given, which makes known the fact that the Paul of the Christian Scriptures was Apollonius of Tyana; and that the so-called Pauline Epistles were the writings of that Cappadocian sage, written in the Samaritan tongue and by himself procured and translated into Greek. Mr. Waite has demonstrated that the writer of Marcion's Gospel, the Gospel of Luke and the Pauline Epistles were one and the same person. Can you doubt that Apollonius of Tyana was that author? If you do, then what is yet to come, and now in hand, will settle that point beyond all doubt.
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